Disaggregating Noncompliance: Exit and Predation in the Nonproliferation Regime
48 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2009 Last revised: 1 Sep 2009
Date Written: 2009
How do countries behave towards international agreements they do not intend to comply with? Do they enter agreements and cheat or do they decline participation altogether? We address these questions by analyzing how countries pursuing nuclear weapons treat the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT). Why do some proliferators enter the NPT and cheat while others do not? We argue that democratic proliferators are less likely to join the NPT for a variety of theoretical reasons. A Heckman probit selection model designed to analyze the behavior of proliferators between 1968 and 2006 reveals that non-democratic proliferators are substantially more likely than democratic proliferators to make deceitful nonproliferation commitments. Armed conflict and strong nonproliferation norms increase the likelihood that states will disingenuously enter the NPT. High levels of industrial capacity reduce this probability. These findings enhance scholarly understanding of nuclear proliferation and generally underscore the value of disaggregating noncompliant behavior.
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