In the field of nuclear disarmament, the identified priorities focus more specifically on: France has always sought to maintain its nuclear arsenal at the lowest possible level compatible with the strategic context, in line with the principle of strict sufficiency.
My presentation will focus on three specific points: It is the ultimate guarantee of the security and independence of France.
It is one of the conditions of our France and disarmament autonomy. Generally speaking, there is a strong political consensus in France — from the right to the left side of our political spectrum — on the fundamental role of nuclear deterrence.
The first works on the military use of nuclear force bring us back to the s. As you may know, this is General de Gaulle who first decided to build an independent nuclear deterrence force for France, in the early s. In order to understand this decision, you have to remember and what it means for France.
With the help of nuclear deterrence, France wants to make sure that its existence and its vital interests could never be threatened again without causing unacceptable damages to its enemy. This doctrine has been conceived during the Cold War era and France is not anymore exposed to the risk of a direct invasion.
But the end of the Cold War was neither the end of history, nor the insurance that our vital interests would never be threatened again. Nuclear deterrence gives us a long-term guarantee.
This guarantee appears to be still necessary for many reasons: As a consequence of this doctrine, we consider that we must master our own nuclear forces in total independence.
This will has caused many tensions between General de Gaulle and the American administrations. However, this attitude did not imply from our part any kind of anti-Americanism. However, we did adapt our doctrine to the end of the bipolar world and to the new threats that appeared in the past decades.
This concept means that we maintain our nuclear arsenal up to the lowest possible level in order to keep an effective deterrence capability on a to years scale. Byour ground-to-ground component was entirely dismantled. Each of our submarines can carry 16 ballistic missiles.
The new ballistic missile M51 has an inter-continental range and is able to deliver 6 nuclear warheads.
Our Airforce now has only 2 nuclear squadrons. A debate exists in France whether or not to maintain both of these two components. On the other side, aircrafts can be seen and are quite impressive, which is a way to show our determination to our adversary.
Therefore, those two components appear to be quite complementary. It offers a bigger range of striking options. In total, our arsenal is currently inferior to nuclear warheads, which represent half of what we had in We totally dismantled our fissile material production facilities, both our enrichment plant for highly enriched uranium at Pierrelatte and our plutonium producing plant at Marcoule.
These dismantling operations are still in process. We have also completely dismantled our nuclear test centers, located in the South Pacific, in a transparent and irreversible manner. France no longer retains the capacity to carry out further nuclear testing and now guarantees the efficiency of its arsenal by simulation means.
On this specific matter, the London Treaty put on the agenda the construction of a franco-british common facility in the French region of Burgundy Bourgogne.
This approach is linked to three main ideas: No true progress in the field of disarmament can ever be made if we fail to fix proliferation crisis and to guarantee the respect of the NPT by its signing members.
Proliferation keeps curbing disarmament. France does not agree with those who think that proliferation is a consequence of the slowness of disarmament. India, Pakistan, North Korea and Iran started to develop their programs at the very moment the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom and France were actively reducing their arsenals.The Moral Disarmament of France: Education, Pacifism, and Patriotism, (Studies in the Social and Cultural History of Modern Warfare) 1st EditionPrice: France and Britain are the two countries in Western Europe that are nuclear weapon states.
While French official policy is that stockpiles should be reduced and testing stopped, the government of President Nicolas Sarkozy has not indicated a commitment to total nuclear disarmament. Great Britain and France succeeded in making headway in the area of disarmament solely because the strategic context had changed considerably, with the end of the Cold War and the construction of a.
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Great Britain and France succeeded in making headway in the area of disarmament solely because the strategic context had changed considerably, with the end of the Cold War and the construction of a.
France has taken significant steps toward disarmament—including halving its warhead total since its Cold War peak, no longer deploying nuclear weapons on its aircraft carrier, the Charles de Gaulle, and extending the time it takes to launch nuclear weapons to several days—and it adheres to a principle of “strict sufficiency” whereby it.