Weinberg, Alvin M.
April 1971
Foreign Affairs;Apr1971, Vol. 49 Issue 3, p407
This paper examines U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower's proposal of sharing the benefits of nuclear energy with the rest of the world, particularly its underdeveloped areas, through the establishment of the International Atomic Energy Agency. The first part of this paper discusses the influence H. G. Wells, who predicted that peaceful nuclear energy might profoundly affect the relations between nations, had on Eisenhower's proposal. According to the author, Eisenhower was fundamentally right when he tried to put flesh on Wells' visionary skeleton, but that he underestimated the time that would be required to actualize the vision. Next, this paper notes that perhaps the most intense international cooperation in peaceful nuclear matters has developed among the countries of Western Europe. In this part, the author describes, however, the lesser, derivative promise of international nuclear energy. The author does not contend that the Eisenhower plan is itself a realistic option; he insists, however, that some variants of the basic idea, in which nuclear energy plays a role in supplying new water, deserve serious attention. The Indo-Gangetic and the Eisenhower plans fall short of Wells' World Set Free. On the other hand, the author contends, they are tangible examples of how the new source of energy might make a political difference.


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