The Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) was negotiated in a world marked by one fundamental, discriminatory reality. A small group of states – five in a system of nearly 200 – possessed nuclear weapons. All other states not only did not possess them but were being asked to join a legally binding agreement that would require them to forsake nuclear weapons for ever. The NPT, signed in 1968, acknowledged this discriminatory reality by designating the nuclear five as the only legally recognized nuclear-weapon states. Thus, though the NPT did not create this situation, it did accept and codify the division of the world into nuclear haves and nuclear have-nots.