Normative factors in U.S. nuclear policy
Preczewski, Michael W.
MetadataShow full item record
This thesis explores the relative value that norms have on U.S. nuclear policies, particularly on their constraining effect on nuclear weapon use and possession. Contemporary academic literature explores how norms constrain the use of nuclear arms, but further research is needed to determine how they affect policies of possession. Using case studies from the Cold War, this thesis presents research indicating that norms have had inconsistent constraining effects on nuclear use and possession policies. Upon applying four leading theories on how norms affect U.S. nuclear policymaking, it becomes clear that no single theory dominated policymaker decisions throughout the Cold War. Instead, differing circumstances created vast inconsistencies as to the constraining effects that norms had on nuclear strategies. Today's policymakers must understand the constraining role that norms have on nuclear policy, and that these norms differ in their constraining effects when nuclear policies are broadened beyond just those of nuclear use. Nuclear policies regarding the possession of nuclear weapons are also influenced by norms, but not necessarily in the same way as they are for nuclear use.
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Kim, Su-kwang (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 2000-12);This thesis explores the future prospects and strategic impact of nuclear proliferation by a unified Korea on regional peace and security. It argues that the perception of vulnerability from external threats, public ...
Pugh, Jonathan P. (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 1994-03);This thesis uses the available literature regarding Egypt's nuclear development program from 1952 to 1981 to show that a weak state faces insurmountable structural restraints from developing nuclear weapons even if motivation ...
Center on Contemporary Conflict (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 2013);Ironically, the greatest likelihood for nuclear proliferation in the coming years may come from U.S. allies. The development of nuclear weapons by South Korea (ROK) could result in a regional nuclear arms race and global ...