Monday, February 21, 2005

Flirting with Armageddon: welcome to a new arms race

"A new nuclear arms race is gripping the world. Many experts believe the likelihood of such an attack is greater now than it was during the Cold War. North Korea has already claimed it has nuclear weapons, Iran could be on the brink of building them. Both nations could trigger arms races among their neighbours. The international system set up to stop the proliferation of nuclear weapons has sprung a series of leaks. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has warned of a 'cascade' of states going nuclear.

"But that might not even be the biggest threat. Behind the ambitions and fears of nations lurk terrorist networks bent on acquiring weapons. Few doubt the most extreme groups would love to use them. It is a bleak picture that makes the Cold War look almost safe. 'We are in an extremely dangerous time right now,' said Natalie Goldring, a proliferation expert at the University of Maryland."

It's not all bad. Just most of it.