New Ways to Think About Nuclear Weapons
New Ways to Think About Nuclear Weapons
Podcast 1 minutes

New Ways to Think About Nuclear Weapons

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and guest co-host Ali Vaez are joined by Emma Belcher, President of Ploughshares Fund, to talk about the extent to which nuclear policy debates have changed and ask whether we can break the deadlock by rethinking our approach to nuclear threats.

The threat posed by nuclear weapons is changing and policy-makers are struggling to keep up. As the Non-Proliferation Treaty review conference approaches, it is clear that the nuclear security field needs a new way of thinking. Nuclear-weapon states are expanding their arsenals and non-proliferation efforts have faltered: it is estimated that Tehran’s nuclear breakout time is now less than a month away, following Donald Trump’s unilateral withdrawal from the Iran deal in 2018 that had extended that timeline to 12 months.

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Special guest-host Ali Vaez, Crisis Group’s Iran Project Director, are joined by Dr Emma Belcher, President of Ploughshares Fund, to ask whether and how bold innovation can solve some of these intractable challenges. They discuss the ways in which policy debates have, or have not, evolved, the continued dominance of deterrence theory and the wave of new, diverse and creative thinkers challenging stale ideas. They also discuss the resumption of negotiations between Iran and the P5+1, prospects for other non-proliferation efforts and hopes for a nuclear-weapon-free future.

Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify

Make sure to learn more about Dr Belcher’s work at Ploughshares Fund by visiting and listening to Ploughshares podcast Press the Button.

This episode is part of our continuing War & Peace sub-series on nuclear weapons and strategy. Click on our special coverage page here to listen to more episodes and benefit from a range of perspectives about everything from deterrence to civil defense to nuclear-weapons-free zones.


Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
Senior Adviser to the President & Project Director, Iran
Emma Belcher
President of Ploughshares Fund

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