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16th June 2022 (6 Topics)

The fragile state of nuclear disarmament

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) released its yearbook a few days back highlighting some worrying trends of the past year in international security. The expected rise of the global nuclear arsenal was the chief cause of concern among SIPRI experts.

What have been the trends in military spending?

  • Average worldwide trend has been slightly downward -Average worldwide trend has been slightly downward -During 2012­2021, military spending as a percentage of gross domestic product has largely been stable. If anything, the average worldwide trend has been slightly downward.
  • Country wise analysis- Russia leads the charge in absolute numbers of nuclear inventory (5977 against the U.S.’s 5428), however it is the U.S. that has the largest number of deployed warheads (1744 against Russia’s 1588). The U.K. has 225 nuclear weapons in its inventory, while France has 290, China has 350, India has 160, Pakistan has 165. Israel is estimated to have 90 and North Korea 20.
  • Global Inequality- It is concerning to see how global discourse has created a sense of fear around China’s military modernisation and their upward trend in nuclear weapons development while the thousands of nuclear weapons held by the U.S. don’t seem to attract a similar level of attention.
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