ISSN 2330-717X

Cooperation, Collaboration And Deterrence – Analysis


Today there has been a drastic change in the applicability of nuclear warheads due to various societal transformations that have enabled countries to sign peaceful coexistence treaties. These treaties aim to improve the entire relationships between these countries, most of them abolishing the production and limitation of both chemical and nuclear weapons during inter-country conflicts as exhibited during the world war period (Wiitala, 2016). However, most countries have expressed traits of adopting credible minimum deterrence as complementary to the collaborations and cooperation they agree with through numerous multilateral talks meant to improve worldwide relations. Therefore, as exhibited in most multilateral talks that frequently happen on nuclear weapons production and usability, cooperation and collaborations have been some of the common characteristics exhibited in these talks as means of enhancing deterrence as far as the peaceful coexistence of countries across the world is concerned (Gentile, Linick & Shurkin, 2017).


Historically, countries have continuously improved their defense systems to render acts of terrorism minimal through the development of related contingency plans. Multilateral collaboration through cooperation has been on the forefronts, which has succeeded and failed depending on the talks’ nature, basically representing the fundamental aspect of deterrence (Shulman & Armstrong, 2009). First, the sixth committee speaker’s multilateral talks have been at the forefront in initiating joint efforts of countries towards combating terrorism through cooperation and collaboration.

With approximately 70 members in agreement through the signing of the Code of Conduct on Counter-Terrorism, cooperation and partnership were the main proposed and negotiated terms between nations. Globally the member countries across different countries agreed to join efforts towards various terrorist groups operating across the continent. Among the most mentioned and target groups across all the continents are the Al-Shabaab and the Boko Haram, which are more disastrous in African countries. The Al-Qaeda group threatens the security of most worldwide countries. However, this collaboration is on restricted terms under the minimum deterrence of most countries in efforts to have reduced collateral damage and peaceful coexistence between member them (Croft, 1996). This sixth committee has been one of the successful multinational negotiations due to deterrence that exists between member nations creating an avenue and one enemy on which both countries were to focus and channel all their efforts.

Furthermore, the United Nations, as an organization since time immemorial, has been at the forefront in fostering nuclear disarmament. According to the former United Nations Higher Representatives on Disarmament Angela Kane, generally, United Nations’ failure in initiating persuasive and collaborative efforts to have all countries disarm their Nuclear weapons and strategies has failed. This failure is based on analysis seventy years after the U.N.’s organizations were formed (Adler, 1992). According to her claims, this was due to the failure of most governments and civil societies to appropriately make effective use of the proposed and established strategies put forward by the United Nations system. Instead of believing to notions that nuclear abolition is an impossible goal and would only act under the adoption of its minimum aspect. Even though U.N., as an organization, has only been successful in the complete prevention of the use of other nuclear weapons after Hiroshima and Nagasaki. 

And the containment of nuclear weapons in just a few countries, the general role of complete disarmament of such weapons from all countries, has failed (Wiitala, 2016). According to the prevailing belief that most developed countries, such as the United States, Germany, Russia, France, Israel, the U.K., and others are still in possession of such weapons.  In doing so, many countries feel threatened by the existence of these nuclear weapons. This perspective comes from nations that have already disarmed them or abandoned pursuing to build them. Thus, implying that this failed deterrence demands that only adoption of minimal deterrence will be accepted.

The 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) was another successful multilateral negotiation that allowed minimal deterrence on the manufacture and usability of chemical weapons for mass destruction against the enemy. Chemical weapons went from being termed as an essential part and parcel of United States arsenals’ deterrence to those considered very disastrous and useless (Gentile, Linick & Shurkin, 2017). With the move, a move being taken by various delegates in that meeting, pressure on the US-led to other countries adopting the same path of complete banning and eliminating their world-class weapons during that year. This being more of cooperation and collaboration as the expected ideology of deterrence that most stakeholders in most countries can follow the same path with Nuclear weapons. 


In addition to that, successful deterrence’s pressure was evident in the 1999 Mine Ban Treaty, commonly referred to as the Ottawa Convention. Based on this treaty, success was achieved through a determined coalition of countries and other non-governmental organizations to yield effective legal and constructional measures in the absence of major significant and relevant countries (Vicente, 2019). Its success has been able to be measured in the removal of thousands of dangerous landmines and established constructive policies of states.

Finally, successful minimal deterrence was exhibited in the collaboration of the United States (Nuclear Posture Review), the Russian (Military Doctrine), and NATO (Strategic Concept). This was after the Russian, and U.S. nuclear weapons had been used to a climax of approximately 70,000 and more in 1986 (Wan, 2017). In Reykjavik, both the United States and Russian leaders, President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Union leader at that time Mikhail Gorbachev, agreed that was to be effective also to other countries. These nuclear weapons were reduced by approximately 85 percent. These were practical effects that affected other countries’ security levels, making them part of the multilateral negotiations and deterrence. Over and above, the United States policies also steadily reduced the role of adoption and manufacture of nuclear weapons while maintaining all the vital deterrence theories and extended deterrence coverage on all their allies (Ziauddin, 2018). It is clear that the attainment of a zero nuclear weapon goal is difficult as expected and desired by most stakeholders worldwide. However, these may be achieved through the fundamental transformation of the entire world political order as proposed by the U.S. congressional commission in 2008.


Deterrence, as based on its theory, revolves around the inferior force of which, by virtue of the power of destruction, is usually aimed at deterring a more powerful adversary as long as it is clear that there are high possibilities of surprise attacks. Therefore, in modern society, many countries usually use it as a strategy to dissuade an adversary from undertaking an action that is not taken using the threat of reprisal. It is clear that even though most multilateral talks usually aim at having a world that no country possesses nuclear weapons. Hence cannot use such weapons when in conflict with another. Such discussions typically end up with countries considering deterrence as the best alternative to enhance inter-country relations. 


Adler, E. (1992). The emergence of cooperation: national epistemic communities and the international evolution of the idea of nuclear arms control. International Organization, 46(1), 101-145.

Croft, S. (1996). European integration, nuclear deterrence, and Franco-British nuclear cooperation. International Affairs, 72(4), 771-788.

Gentile, G., Linick, M. E., & Shurkin, M. (2017). The Evolution of U.S. Military Policy from the Constitution to the Present (No. RR-1759-A). RAND ARROYO CENTER SANTA MONICA CA SANTA MONICA United States.

Shulman, C., & Armstrong, S. (2009, July). Arms control and intelligence explosions. In 7th European Conference on Computing and Philosophy (ECAP), Bellaterra, Spain, July (pp. 2-4).

Vicente, A. (2019). European Nuclear Deterrence and Security Cooperation: Post-Brexit Relations and Challenges. In Peace, Security and Defence Cooperation in Post-Brexit Europe (pp. 163-190). Springer, Cham.

Wan, W. (2017). Beyond the Alliance: The Regional Value of US‐Japan Nuclear Cooperation. Asian Politics & Policy, 9(1), 66-81.

Wiitala, J. D. (2016). Challenging minimum deterrence: articulating the contemporary relevance of nuclear weapons. Air Force Research Institute Maxwell AFB United States.

Ziauddin, S. B. (2018). Sharing Knowledge, Shaping Europe: U.S. Technological Collaboration and Non-proliferation by John Krige. Technology and Culture, 59(1), 188-190.

Dr. Mustapha Kulungu

Dr. Mustapha Kulungu is the Principal Researcher at the ILM Foundation Institute of Los Angeles, California. He graduated from Fielding Graduate University, Santa Barbara, California.

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