Reimagining Security: The Metaphors of Proliferation
'Proliferation' appears to have been developed as a central image in the new international security agenda in the time between Krauthammer's article and the recent NATO summit. The spur to the construction of this image was the war in the Gulf. In the first section of this paper, I trace the construction of the image of proliferation in the pronouncements and practices of the Western states following the Gulf War. This image of proliferation as a security problem is, as Krauthammer noted, a perception of the state of the world. That perception is a metaphorical one, as the image of a security problem which is created is grounded in metaphor. In the second section I discuss the nature of image and metaphor as they relate to the constitution of international security. Finally, I examine the particular metaphors of the proliferation image, in order to show how they shape the understanding of a problem, and the policy solutions which are developed in response.