In this book, the authors explore the controversial Iranian nuclear programme through the conceptual lens of nuclear hedging. In 2002, revelations regarding undeclared nuclear facilities thrust Iran's nuclear activities under the spotlight and prompted concerns that Tehran was pursuing nuclear weapons. Iran has always denied nuclear weapons aspirations, yet it cant be disputed that the Islamic Republic has gone well beyond what is required for a civil nuclear programme based on energy production and scientific research. What, then, is the nature and significance of Iran's nuclear behaviour? Does it form part of a coherent strategy? What can Iran's actions in the nuclear field tell us about Tehran's intentions? And what does the Iranian case teach us about proliferation behaviour more generally? This book addresses these questions by exploring the nature of nuclear hedging and how this approach might be identified, before applying this logic to the Iranian case. It provides fresh insights into the inherently opaque area of nuclear proliferation and a more nuanced interpretation of the Iranian nuclear challenge.
Wyn Bowen is Professor of Non-proliferation and International Security and Head of Department at the Defence Studies Department at King's College London, UK. Matthew Moran is Senior Lecturer in International Security in the Department of War Studies at King's College London, UK. Dina Esfandiary is a MacArthur Fellow at the Centre for Science and Security Studies at King's College London, UK.