Published online by Cambridge University Press: 17 April 2021
Advocates of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) invariably view nuclear weapons as a threat to international peace and security. The ideals presented by the humanitarian disarmament movement challenge conventional nuclear deterrence policies and defense doctrines currently held by the nuclear-weapon states and their allies. An aim of the TPNW is to challenge basic deterrence assumptions with the intention of advancing normative change by delegitimizing nuclear weapons and changing how they are perceived throughout the world. The position of some states that nuclear weapons provide a military deterrence for overall global security and protection against war is under increasing scrutiny and now there is an actual treaty – the TPNW – opposing this position.