When India conducted her nuclear tests at Pokhran back in the late 90's, the US promptly imposed sanctions on India. At that time I had despised US for doing so. My thoughts were roughly: "What do they think of themselves? Are they the policemen of the world?And what's this hypocrisy? Let them dismantle their nukes first, then they have the moral right to tell us to do so"
I felt the same about NPT (Nuclear non-proliferation treaty).
However, when N.Korea conducted two nuclear tests within a span of a few months, I had to revise my thoughts. Although it does appear that Obama envisions the world completely disarmed of its nuclear weapons in the near or far future, I am not sure whether that is a good thing or a bad thing.
I don't know whether I am making any sense, but I am jotting down the various random bullet-points that come to my mind in connection with this issue:
With rogue states like N.Korea around, it is never safe for the (seemingly) gentleman states to get rid of their nuclear arsenal. Who knows how many other Commie or military states are stocking up on their nukes.
Pakistan has nuclear arsenal. While the country is not a rogue-state in itself, the extremists and religious fanatics are taking control over large swathes. Who knows how soon they will have the N-button at their fingertips?
Who knows what seemingly harmless Governments like Myanmar (if you can call it a Govt that is!) are stashing underground.
And hey - even the gentleman states dont completely trust each other - do they? How can they be trusted to completely (I emphasize on the "completely") dismantle all their nuclear weapons?
Finally, even in the almost-impossible event that all the nuclear weapons which currently exist in the world are dismantled - how difficult will it be for any of the current nuclear powers to re-create the weapon? Remember, only the weapons are being destroyed - not the technology. And nuclear fuel will still be available, ostensibly for power generation!
It's a hopeless situation really. Nuclear proliferation or not .. nuclear disarmament is not going to happen anytime soon. Obama's vision may remain but a dream.