Will We Ever See a Nuclear-Free World? (VIDEO)

[ 0 ] August 6, 2012 |

How has war evolved over the last few decades? In many ways, not too much. Watch Michael O’Hanlon, senior fellow at The Brookings Institution and author of Bending History: Barack Obama’s Foreign Policy, talk about how combat isn’t much different than what the U.S. saw in Vietnam, plus his hopes for a reduced global nuclear arsenal:

Michael O’Hanlon (left) with genConnect’s Baruch Shemtov (right); © Robert Millman 2012

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Although O’Hanlon says he one day hopes for the world to have fewer nuclear weapons, there are challenges to eliminating them.

“Nuclear weapons are small, and not that easy to detect,” O’Hanlon says. “How do you ever eliminate what’s already here and how do you ensure yourself that somebody is not building a new one? So it’s a verification challenge.”

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Plus, he points out, we built nuclear weapons for a reason. “We still think they can contribute to peace among the great powers,” O’Hanlon said. But with tense situations such as Israel’s existence being questioned by some Arab states, and China’s fight for Taiwan, “there are some big challenges that make you wonder if you can really give up what’s sort of an insurance policy against the outbreak of major war.”

genConnect was credentialed press at the 2012 Aspen Ideas Festival in Aspen, Colo., where we interviewed the premier speakers and attendees at the conference. For more of our video interviews and articles from the Ideas Festival, click here.

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About Michael O'Hanlon: Michael O'Hanlon is a senior fellow in Foreign Policy at the Brookings Institution, where he specializes in U.S. defense strategy, the use of military force, homeland security and American foreign policy. He is a visiting [...]
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