October 16 2008 - The U.S.-India nuclear agreement is an unneeded and potentially disastrous Bush administration initiative that undermines a 30-year nonproliferation policy pioneered by the United States and adopted by 189 nations.
It will accelerate both the nuclear and conventional arms races between India and Pakistan, countries that have fought three wars in the past 60 years and have come close at least two other times within the past decade.
After two years of arm-twisting by the United States, the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) recently agreed to make an exception to its trade rules for India. Congress followed by voting its approval, and President Bush signed the agreement into law. Until the exception, the NSG rules required that India (and all other 184 countries in its category as defined by the 1970 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty) allow international inspections of all its nuclear materials and the facilities containing them. India had consistently refused to sign the treaty, known as the NPT, and agree to such safeguards, which led to the cutoff of nuclear trade by the United States under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Act of 1978. This law was motivated in part by India's 1974 nuclear test using U.S. nuclear material that violated the sale agreement prohibiting the use of such material for nuclear explosives. India's violation led to the creation of the NSG, which adopted the safeguards standard for nuclear trade in 1992. More >>>