Nuclear weapon states’ policies with regards to their arsenals and doctrines remain ambiguous, with transparency used mainly to support explicit and implicit threats. When a state has the apparent ability and also the willingness to act, its threats are more likely to be believed. A new and comprehensive Deep Cuts Working Paper by Olga Oliker, Franziska Stärk, Dmitry Stefanovich and Maren Vieluf examines the logic for and against nuclear weapons transparency and how it manifests itself in the attitudes and behaviors of nuclear weapon states and their allies.
The authors conclude that in an uncertain and dangerous environment, greater transparency may be hard to reach but would retain evident benefits for stability and predictability. The paper includes suggestions on how to increase accountability and transparency – within and outside of the framework of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).
The Deep Cuts Working Paper No.15 “Truth or Dare: Transparency, Ambiguity, and Prospects for New International Commitments in the Nuclear Realm” can be found here.