@Rabs_AA hosted @seb_bw and @WheelerICCS, to discuss their co-authored report entitled 'Nuclear Responsibilities: A New Approach to Thinking and Talking about Nuclear Weapons'.
Introducing the report, @seb_bw said that the idea was to explore ways to foster a culture of responsibility in the heart of nuclear politics, adding that a strong culture of talking and thinking about nuclear responsibilities will reduce mistrust, misperception, instability,etc.
Thinking and talking about nuclear responsibilities, said Sebastian, helps in better policymaking which, among other things, is critical to mitigating misperceptions and creating a better understanding at multiple levels when it comes to nuclear policy.
According to @seb_bw ,talking about this concept separates acceptable behavior from that which should be flayed due to its being egregious.
In a bid to shun recrimination, Sebastian said, the program aims to develop a vocabulary for generating a new, different discourse.
The approach, Sebastian stressed, places systematic, holistic considerations of responsibilities at the center, with a view to reframing the conversation regarding nuclear weapons.
This, he believed, was important in changing how policies are framed and how dialogues are held on all things nuclear.
All this, said Sebastian, is essential to shifting the conversation from my to us, with the latter engendering a fair degree of responsibility as opposed to a competition-driven disquisition.
.@WheelerICCS said that the report does not, in any manner, advocates for one approach at the expense of the other. He said that this program is introducing a new way to think and talk about nuclear weapons that will but enable to develop the contours of a constructive dialogue.
When asked by @Rabs_AA as to what is the likelihood of the nuclear haves listening to their approach, Sebastian introduced select components of the Nuclear Responsibilities Toolkit: Thinking, Talking, and Writing( about nuclear responsibilities).
In the section on thinking, a framework will enable groups and individuals to think about their responsibilities in relation to NWs, said Sebastian while adding that it would also help identify conflicts and assumptions that drive them.
Sebastian delved into the three-step process of talking about nuclear responsibilities, starting from familiarisation and graduating to a broad-based, multi-stakeholder dialogue.
Bringing in optimism, @seb_bw said that one has to assume that parties do engage in dialogue, and that too in good faith. He contended that talks are impeded not because of lack of will but due to a not-so-rich vocabulary that is needed for an effective parleys.
When asked by @Rabs_AA as to how could constructivism leave a mark on a realist framework, Sebastian said that realists can engage with this approach, for they do understand the import of responsibilities. The idea, he said, is to bring to the fore what is implicit.
He added that this approach gives both schools of thought a language to communicate with each other.
When questioned as to why India and Pakistan would not look askance to this approach, Wheeler said that, through this program, space will be created where groups are open to recognising the very many stark differences in perceptions about each other.
Also, @WheelerICCS highlighted why a better understanding on part of the South Asian nuclear dyad is but a factor of stability when it comes to crises.
Does outsourcing escalation control exemplifies irresponsible nuclear behaviour, asked @Rabs_AA. Wheeler said he would, as per the nature of the project, not apportion responsibility among actors.
.@WheelerICCS added that, in a bid to make sense of the responsibility-irresponsibility pendulum, and, in the process, understand escalation dynamics during crises, actors who were involved back in the day must be brought together under a dialogue process.
The constructivist answer to a structural realist would be, according to Wheeler, that states may reassure adversaries in a manner that would not increase insecurity.
Wheeler reiterated that there is space for cooperation and mutual security in an anarchic international system.
When asked by @Rabs_AA as to what will the program pitch to Pakistani policymakers, Sebastian said given that there are risks aplenty in the region which emanate from lack of understanding, there is a need to add off-ramps and reduce crisis instability.
According to Sebastian, in the medium and long terms, both countries should talk about ways to reduce misperceptions and the underlying drivers of conflict.
Sebastian duly acknowledged that convincing India and Pakistan would be a tall order, but he stressed that the process has to start.
He said that the prospect of substantive dialogue could improve if the focus is shifted from obligations to responsibility.
Wheeler argued that this program offers India and Pakistan a new pathway, one that is far away from political minefields that have long marred their relations.
Wheeler reminded how Reagan and Gorbachev pulled off something that at one point looked impossible.
Dr.Akhtar asked as to how the program will navigate the challenge of substantive dialogue being contingent upon strategic chains (China, US).
In response to that, Sebastian said that the program is in the familiarisation phase. It will include all these countries in the process going forward.
He also admitted that to cajole countries to critically assess their policies in front of their adversaries is but a gargantuan task.
Dr.Akhtar asked as to whether London's recent announcement of increasing its nuclear arsenal will affect their efforts to create a culture of nuclear responsibilities.
Sebastian said that the language used in the recent policy document is new, for it moves away from the previous one that talked about its being a responsible NWS. He said that the UK dropped this term deliberately.
Sebastian said that policymakers in London would tell you that improving their nuclear deterrent for national security is the country's top priority and responsibility.
While noting that UK has increased the cap, not numbers, Sebastian talked about the tiff over Article VI of the NPT.
Both agreed that the UK has to demonstrate how its recent policy directions will not impinge on its commitment to building trust and reducing risks.
The UK, said @WheelerICCS ,could galvanise the P5, pushing for a P5 plus 2 framework to dabble into questions and issues pertaining to nuclear responsibilities.

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