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This essay is about the power of the international law of nonproliferation- its mounting power in the world today and its properly augmented power in an enlightened future. The article focuses on three primary areas in which international law may play a greater role than is commonly appreciated in affecting the behavior of potential proliferators, their suppliers, and their resolute opponents. The three topics-areas in which the essay pleads for law to be taken even more seriously, and by a wider audience of governments and the international public-are: (a) treaties (especially the provisions of those treaties that commit the parties to pursue further incremental measures of disarmament); (b) customary international law (especially those aspects of behaviorbased jurisprudence which provide unwritten, but nevertheless binding, constraints upon the preparation for and conduct of state violence); and (c) disarmament institutions (especially those novel multilateral organizations that have recently sprung up to play a variety of fact-finding, confidence-building, and dispute-resolution functions).

In all of this, the core notion is the suggestion that international law works, and that it would work even better if more people would notice it and come to understand how lawfulness advances their own self-interest.

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2 Transnat’l L. & Contemp. Probs. 357