Based on the three pillars of nonproliferation, disarmament, and the right of peaceful use of nuclear technology, the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) has become the cornerstone of the nonproliferation regime. The NPT prohibits any state that did not already possess nuclear weapons by 1968 from acquiring them. Yet, India, Israel, and Pakistan—who never signed the NPT—are known to have nuclear weapons since 1968. Of these outlier states, India presents a special case because it has voluntarily adhered to many of the NPT’s rules and has proven itself a responsible nuclear weapon state, though is not an NPT signatory.
Ubiquitous and unpredictable, the threat of a terrorist attack hovers over society like an ominous rain cloud. In the post 9/11 context, a perceived need to actively confront this threat dominates the security discourse in the United States and around the world. Yet, the vastness and amorphous nature of the threat poses great challenges to governments, who bear the primary responsibility for keeping their citizens safe.The impossibility of protecting every airport, bridge, water supply center, and other piece of critical infrastructure has given rise to a system of risk management whereby authorities attribute a level of dangerousness to a wide spectrum of potential risks and treat each one accordingly. The idea is to mitigate risk by employing security technologies within new frameworks that seek to manage the underlying uncertainty.