The overarching question imparting urgency to this exploration is: Can U.S.-Russian contention in cyberspace cause the two nuclear superpowers to stumble into war? In considering this question we were constantly reminded of recent comments by a prominent U.S. arms control expert: At least as dangerous as the risk of an actual cyberattack, he observed, is cyber operations’ “blurring of the line between peace and war.” Or, as Nye wrote, “in the cyber realm, the difference between a weapon and a non-weapon may come down to a single line of code, or simply the intent of a computer program’s user.”
Contrary to conventional wisdom, this presentation will offer a security-based argument for India’s nuclear weapons program. Based on U.S., Indian, and French historical documents from the 1960s, Jayita Sarkar, Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow, argues that New Delhi opted for the “Plowshare loophole” as a cost-effective way to enter the nuclear club. Its regional insecurities vis-à-vis Pakistan and nuclear China, and its mistrust of the United States contributed to its proliferation drift, despite its active involvement in the negotiations for the NPT.