You can’t give one kid a lollipop without the rest of them complaining that they haven’t got one. And you know, it’s exactly the same with governments and exemptions from the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). You give one country an exemption and sure enough other countries will want one as well.
If India can have nuclear technology without signing the NPT, Pakistan are saying, then why can’t we? U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice declared the deal to allow India to trade in nuclear technology a ‘very big step forward’. Indeed, it’s a very big step over the corpse of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
You have to wonder what the US and the wider global family were expecting. If you treat one of your children as the favourite there is always going to be jealousy, resentment and conflict from the rest. As any parent can tell you, a lack of consistency in your attitude to discipline can lead to behavioural problems. Iran gets sanctions, Syria gets bombed, Libya gets arms, India gets exemptions. Is it any wonder people are confused? What will Pakistan get?
This, yet again, shows how dangerous and divisive nuclear energy is. Aside from the waste and safety fears, the industry has real potential to put nations at loggerheads. Say what you like about renewables but we defy sunlight, waves and wind to cause international tensions.