Nuclear Weapons Pros and Cons

Nuclear weapons have been in this world since World War 2 and have been used, till date only twice and that too in the same war we are speaking about. The only country to use nuclear weapons was the United States of America. The US dropped two atomic nuclear bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the world witnessed the power of the man-made nuclear weapons. The nuclear weapons effects were such that millions of innocent people were killed and this brought the end of the World War 2. Scientists have long debated on the pros and cons of nuclear weapons. Some say it's very essential for a country, but some still see it as a major threat to the human race. Let's discuss some nuclear weapons pros and cons.

Nuclear Weapons Facts
  • A nuclear weapon derives its devastating force from nuclear fission reaction. So, even a small nuclear weapon has enough potential to wipe out an entire city.
  • In history, nuclear weapons have been used twice both during the closing days of the World War 2. The first one was dropped on the 6th of August 1945 on Hiroshima and the second bomb was dropped three days later on Nagasaki. You may also want to find out more information on bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
  • There are still 26,000 nuclear weapons in the world which is enough to destroy the entire human civilization.
  • Of all the nuclear weapons in the world, 95% belong to US and Russia.
  • There are currently nine countries in possession of nuclear weapons (US, Russia, India, China, UK, France, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea).
  • The United States enjoys the right to declare any form of military action if it or its allies face any attack by a weapon of mass destruction. The United States also assures that it would not use a nuclear power bomb against a non nuclear state, unless the state attacked the US and its allies with a nuclear weapon.
  • There are up to 2,000,000 kilograms of Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) in global reserve and it take just 15 to 24 kilograms to make a nuclear weapon. There are about 27 countries which have enough reserve to make one nuclear bomb and 12 countries which have stock worth 20 nuclear bombs.
  • Nuclear reactors create plutonium which also acts like a source of bomb material. It takes less than 5 kilograms of plutonium to make a nuclear bomb. There are around 500,000 kilograms of plutonium in global stockpiles. Its stock continues to rise due to civilian spent fuel reprocessing.
  • The Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT) which was signed between the US and Russia, requires them to lessen their deployed nuclear weapons between 1,700 to 2,200 by December 31, 2012. The day this treaty expires, both the countries can redeploy as many nuclear weapons as they want. The weapons which have been taken off deployed status are not being demolished, but are placed in storage where they are easily accessible and can be stolen by criminal and terrorist groups.
Nuclear Weapons Pros and Cons

Nuclear weapons advantages and disadvantages have been discussed by people from all walks of life. Some rational people think it's a secured future for their families, but some who know and have seen the destruction caused by nuclear bombs despise it. You might also be interested in nuclear power pros and cons.

Pros: Nuclear weapons have protected mankind since two generations. They are the ultimate hindrance to any enemy and the best way to ensure peace. The decision to replace a nuclear bomb with a new security measure has always been laid back. Nobody can predict how much dangerous the world will become when there would be no nuclear bombs. It is probably impossible to check the number of nuclear bombs in the world. Defense experts also say that it wouldn't be a wise decision to scrap all nuclear weapons when hostile states like Iran are about to acquire a nuclear bomb.

Cons: Use of nuclear weapons is immoral. We should try to prevent their growth. More the number of nuclear weapons made, more are the risks it poses to human life. Maintaining a nuclear bomb is very expensive. It takes a large share of the country's defense budget. Countries are more likely to have a civil war in which they can use nuclear weapons against each other, which could prove disastrous to the entire globe. Possession of nuclear weapons is an outdated manly symbol. Countries like Germany, Spain and Australia don't have any nuclear weapons, but are still popular as the US and UK.

Read more on: This elimination of nuclear weapons is practically impossible, but if we take a sincere effort, we might be able to make this planet free from nuclear weapons. I hope this article on nuclear weapons pros and cons helped you understand the various aspects of this destructive weapon.
By Kulbhushaan Raghuvanshi
FEMA: Nuclear Power Plant Emergency
Reports prepared by FEMA on the issues involved in nuclear emergency management and background information on nuclear hazards.