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Re: Deterrence

Postby Tuan » 12 Jun 2020 06:28

A Nuclear Test Would Blow Up in Trump’s Face ... nkmanship/

The Trump administration doesn’t understand the brinkmanship concept its nuclear diplomacy is based on. :idea:


The latest example of this tendency comes amid reports that the administration might conduct a “rapid” nuclear test to strengthen its hand in negotiations with China and Russia. Experts around the world have denounced this proposal as dangerous, foolhardy, and “catastrophically stupid.”

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Re: Deterrence

Postby NRao » 13 Jun 2020 09:59

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Re: Deterrence

Postby krishna_krishna » 13 Jun 2020 19:59

NRao wrote:

Utter trash, the last line sums it all "IF there is global NFU then value of new clear weapons diminishes over a period of time and then India can move towards disarmament". Again brain farts of west these charsis are smoking a very potent stuff, the world they imagine no longer exists and west is crumbling under its own weight.Such trash can only come from mass funded fart org's with chor Tyagi as its top with Sanjay baru and ex def sec NN Vohra (out in out congrasss suckers).

They are all sell outs.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Manish_Sharma » 13 Jun 2020 20:21

^ I am shocked to see such a snakeoil peddling video posted on BRF. As if praful bidwai has come back from dead and started posting on BRF

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Re: Deterrence

Postby ramana » 14 Jun 2020 05:26

Dont know how such idealists are bred only in India and can claim to be strategic experts!
Nukes are here to stay and most likely being refined for bigger and accurate delivery.

And the jury is not yet out about what is this Covid all about?

How can these trash talk about NFU while China with impunity can still try to reenact 1962 even in 2020?

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Re: Deterrence

Postby amar_p » 14 Jun 2020 13:06

" Again brain farts of west these charsis are smoking"
"mass funded fart org's with chor Tyagi as its top"
"out in out congrasss suckers)."

Could learned posters take this hitopadehsa "Vidya dadati vinayam..." and show some self-restraint ?

IMHO, disagreeing without being disagreeable makes BRF what it is.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby krishna_krishna » 14 Jun 2020 19:02

amar_p wrote:Could learned posters take this hitopadehsa "Vidya dadati vinayam..." and show some self-restraint ?

Sir thank you for the hitopdesha, however that was a message to the intended audience on this forum.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby amar_p » 15 Jun 2020 01:37

Sir, you can use private messaging feature of the forum if you have messages specific to some members. What you post is for all to see and bear !

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Re: Deterrence

Postby SSridhar » 03 Jul 2020 18:46

Enhancing space deterrence thought for nuclear threshold threats (part 1) - Christopher M Stone, The Space Review

Space & Nuclear assets are getting more and more intertwined and so too is Deterrence. Though, the discussion here is wrt the US, the ideas are common.

Since the Cold War, the idea that nuclear weapons would have any impact upon space power theory, space deterrence, or space defense postures was considered unlikely. After all, the nuclear weapon’s influence upon foreign policy and strategy had taken a back seat to non-proliferation regimes and sanctuary theory, therefore making any need for deterrence of space attacks, especially at higher nuclear thresholds, unnecessary. However, recent scholarship has pointed to the fact that the world is now in the midst of a second nuclear age, one in which great power competition has returned, but with non-peer adversaries also acquiring capabilities for nuclear use and space access.[1] What does this environment mean for space deterrence given the proliferation of ASAT weaponry, missiles, and EMP weapons? This article provides background on these new dynamics of the strategic situation and reviews an alternate strategic analysis framework for credible space deterrence that is tailorable to a particular crisis’s context.

The second nuclear age and changes in deterrence theory

In the past few decades, nuclear weapons non-proliferation efforts have proven ineffective. As a result, the spread of nuclear weapons has emerged from “natural causes” of state interest.[2] This means that, despite attempts at norms and globalization efforts meant to limit the spread of such weapons, “normal dynamics of fear and insecurity that have long characterized international affairs” have led to nuclear weapons returning for a second act.[3]

Thomas Schelling stated that “there is a tendency in our planning to confuse the unfamiliar with the improbable. The contingency we have not considered looks strange; what looks strange is thought improbable; what is improbable need not be considered seriously.”[4] Now with the shift to a strategic environment in which nuclear weapons technologies and the means to deliver them effectively are actively pursued by rogue states like North Korea, the possibility of limited nuclear use may be on the rise.[5] As Herman Kahn states in his book, Thinking about the Unthinkable in the 1980s, “Some of the ideas [regarding nuclear use by states] are not on anyone’s minds, but probably should be.”[6] Put another way, “nuclear weapons exist. They are spreading. As a result, the United States may face a situation where other countries may use them.”[7] Due to the “second mover advantage” that North Korea gains through learning from Russia and China, what does that mean for deterrence and escalation thought?

Deterrence theorists have modified their theories somewhat because of the different strategic contexts of the second nuclear age. The “third wave” theorists such as Keith B. Payne or Therese Delpech argue that not all adversaries can be viewed as rational, reasonable, and predictive, and therefore a unified deterrence theory is ineffective in the modern world.[8] In addition, the personal beliefs, intentions, and worldviews that exist in the multiplayer, multicultural environment of today’s international system imply that more understanding of a state’s strategic culture and decision-making calculus is required to effectively posture for credible deterrence.[9] In addition to strategic culture, two scholars argue that not just any posture, but one capable of escalation dominance adds credibility to deterrence frameworks in this new nuclear age.[10]

Kerry Kartchner and Michael Gerson argue that strategies of escalation dominance claim to be more relevant to today’s strategic environment than in the past.[11] This is because escalation dominance “does not depend on shared commitment to a particular set of understandings or rules” and therefore might be more helpful in dealing with revisionist powers and states of concern that are either not invested in the international order’s rules and norms of behavior or are trying to rewrite them through action.[12] Escalation dominance, if done correctly, relies “purely upon superior brute force and war-winning strategies, coupled with the credible threat to employ those forces and strategies if necessary.”[13]

This credibility of threat is key. If a government or actor lacks the forces necessary to escalate or engage in a war-winning strategy, then escalation dominance will be lacking. An example of escalation dominance being successfully employed against the US is the Russian use of nuclear posturing to deter NATO and US intervention in the invasion of Ukraine in 2014. Russia postured its nuclear forces per its doctrine of escalate-to-deescalate and the open threat to use those nuclear forces if any conventional force entered Russian territory.[14] Escalation dominance was viewed as a credible possibility by NATO, and Russia seized Crimea and added it to the territory of the Russian state.[15]

With this context in mind, and with the possibility of having to include higher threshold events or crises within the National Strategy for Space of the US, one possible option based on third-wave thinking on deterrence and escalation dominance is the tiered, tailored approach to space deterrence.[16]

A review of the framework for credible space deterrence

The framework suggested in Reversing the Tao began with a look at the strategic level viewpoint necessary to understand the threat and operational environment within which all scenarios would play regarding DoD postures for deterrence in space. National leaders therefore are required to acknowledge four items of importance to frame the situation.

First, American strategists should recognize that deterrence requires getting into an adversary’s decision-making process through observation and analysis of its strategic culture, doctrine, and behavior.[17]

Policymakers and strategists must view space systems as a critical infrastructure of the United States and not just a support structure for force enhancement and terrestrial operations.

Second, strategists and policymakers must acknowledge that space is an offensive, dominant medium.[18] As a result, in order to provide effective deterrence in a standard space power environment, much less at the higher nuclear thresholds of the second nuclear age, the US must actively protect its space systems through a credible offensive- counterforce capability to reverse the first-strike instability, at least up to the kinetic weapons threshold.[19] A kinetic ASAT’s use could not only be a threat or use of force for active deterrence in the conventional sense but could also be part of an adversary’s nuclear strategy.[20]

Next, theorists of the third wave suggest that any future national security space posture should acknowledge that damage limitation measures such as active defense of US critical space and terrestrial infrastructures are vital to ensure credible deterrence in scenarios of vertical escalation.[21] Deployment of active defenses supports the view expressed by second nuclear age scholars such as Keith B. Payne, who argue that to exercise force projection in regional contexts of the second nuclear age as means to deterrence requires management of risk to the US homeland and deployed forces. To ensure an adequate management of risk requires damage limitation measures such as “offensive capabilities for counterforce strikes; active defenses such as air and ballistic missile defenses; and passive defenses such as physical protection” and hardening against space-borne EMP.[22]

Finally, policymakers and strategists must view space systems as a critical infrastructure of the United States and not just a support structure for force enhancement and terrestrial operations.[23] The view of space systems as critical infrastructure has been a view in national strategy and doctrine for years, but it has never been fully funded or executed broadly by senior leadership as a critical infrastructure normatively.[24]

Following the strategic framing necessary to tailor deterrence to potential adversaries, the posture suggested in the framework in Reversing the Tao includes a tiered structure: Tier 1 space deterrence scenarios deal with the merger of the nuclear and space power threats that could impact the homeland; Tier 2 space deterrence deals with most counterspace threats across the counterspace spectrum and up the vertical escalation ladder; Tier 3 deterrence deals with strictly reversible counterspace threats and means to escalate.[25] Having the physical means to achieve escalation dominance is vital to this framework for space deterrence. To help clarify the thresholds of escalation in a space power context, even those that combine with nuclear use, the author devised the following escalation ladder (See Figure 1).[26]

Non-Interference/Peaceful Use of Space

Freedom of Action in Space (civil, commercial, military use of space for benefit of nation and world)
Intelligence/SSA Collections (Passive/Active)

Reversible, Yet Purposeful Interference Threshold (Deny/Degrade)

Passive Jamming
Active Jamming/Cyber Attacks
Laser Tracking/Dazzling
Unauthorized, Rendezvous and Proximity Operations Near U.S. or allied spacecraft
Posturing/Mobilization of Destructive Space Attack Forces

Irreversible, Purposeful Interference Threshold (Damage)

High Energy Chemical Laser
High Power Microwave Weapons Use

Kinetic, Debris Generation Threshold (Destroy)

Kinetic Energy (KE) Anti-Satellite (ASAT) missiles (Terrestrial Based- LEO)
Kinetic Energy (KE) Anti-Satellite (ASAT) weapons (Co-Orbital)
Kinetic Energy (KE) Anti-Satellite (ASAT) missiles (Terrestrial Based- GEO)

Nuclear Use Threshold (Destroy)

Terrestrial Fractional Orbital Bombardment Systems (FOBS)
Orbital Electro-Magnetic Pulse (EMP)
Orbital Nuclear Strike against spacecraft (all orbital regimes affected)

Figure 1. Space Power Escalation Ladder. (Reproduced from Christopher Stone, Reversing the Tao: A Framework for Credible Space Deterrence, CreateSpace Publishing, 2016).

To explain the escalation ladder tool, the first threshold describes the ideal peacetime condition of non-interference and the international peaceful use of space. The first threshold also describes conditions supported by customary norms such as freedom of action in space for civil space exploration, commercial space development, and military uses of space for the national and multinational interest. In addition, it also includes military operations such as intelligence and space situational awareness operations to ensure the status quo is maintained by all spacefaring nations and the monitoring of arms control treaties.

The next threshold addresses the first level of purposeful attack along the reversible side of the counterspace spectrum. Examples can include passive or active jamming of radiofrequency communications, tracking or illumination by lasers upon surveillance satellites, unauthorized rendezvous and proximity operations near US or allied spacecraft, or even posturing and mobilization of destructive, space attack forces on Earth. This threshold has been the current norm of behavior in space for the last decade or so.
Once the kinetic threshold has been crossed, destruction of US space assets is the adversary’s clear objective within its destructive space warfare concept.

The next threshold of the space power escalation ladder is the first set of damaging counterspace attacks. This threshold consists of two rungs of chemical laser use or high-power microwave weapons systems. High-energy chemical lasers, in the current context, refer to terrestrial-based laser systems, although high-energy space-based lasers have been proposed and discussed for decades.[27] Deterrence theorists of the Cold War, such as Keith B. Payne, have argued that deploying laser systems into orbit, especially for defensive purposes, could aid nuclear deterrence stability.[28] High-power microwaves are another form of directed energy weapons that can “produce effects that range from denying the use of electrical equipment to disrupting, damaging, or destroying that equipment” onboard spacecraft.[29] While these can deny and degrade spacecraft systems, these types of weapons systems, terrestrial-based or orbit-based, serve to bridge the destructive threshold of space power attack.

Once the kinetic threshold has been crossed, destruction of US space assets is the adversary’s clear objective within its destructive space warfare concept.[30]30 These rungs of escalation within this framework for space deterrence decision making includes kinetic energy anti-satellite (KE ASAT) missiles (terrestrial-based) with ranges of low Earth orbit (LEO) all the way up to geostationary orbit (GEO). In addition, co-orbital ASATs deployed in space are included within this threshold. Co-orbital ASATs are kinetic weapons that can be based in orbit and used to strike other satellite targets, interceptors, or other attacking satellites.[31] While current counterspace postures within this threshold are limited to terrestrial- based KE ASAT missiles and a few test co-orbital ASATs, future deployment modes could be multilayered and multiuse for both space-on-space and space-to-ground attacks. Writings from near-peer potential adversaries such as China indicate that this type of multilayer attack architecture is part of its future space strategy.[32]

As one continues to the top of escalation tool, the maximum damage that could be done is by crossing the threshold to nuclear use. These less familiar weapons systems could be used to affect critical space infrastructure in orbit, destroy terrestrial targets such as power grids and command and control centers, or both. This type of scenario constitutes a Tier 1 Deterrence event. One example of this is an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) employed via Fractional Orbital Bombardment Systems (FOBS) or satellites.

An EMP is defined as the interaction of high energy nuclear radiation with the atoms of the atmosphere causing damaging surges of electric power.[33] When a nuclear explosion occurs at high altitude or in space, “the EMP signal it produces will cover the wide geographic region within the line of sight of the detonation.”[34] This EMP capability can produce “widespread and long-lasting disruption and damage to the critical infrastructures that underpin the fabric of U.S. society.”[35]

An EMP attack has three phases. The E1 phase occurs when “gamma radiation during the first 10 nanoseconds from the nuclear detonation rips electrons out of the atoms in the atmosphere.”[36] This process induces very high voltages in electrical conducers, most of which are not designed to protect against such levels of surge. E2 is generated when the scattered gamma rays and emissions, produced by neutron collisions from the explosion for one nanosecond, pulse similar to a lightning bolt. Because of this similarity, this is one area that can be easier to protect against.[37] Finally, E3 is a slow pulse lasting hundreds of seconds and is a result of the impact of the EMP on the Earth’s magnetic field. E3 is similar to the geomagnetic storms that occur in nature and can negatively impact such things as power lines and spacecraft systems in orbit.

In testimony before a 2004 committee on EMP, Gary Smith of Johns Hopkins University stated that the effect of such an attack “can be continental in scope.”[38] Continent-wide damage is possible because a detonation at an altitude of 500 kilometers means the entire continental United States, as well as parts of Canada and Mexico, and vital parts of our critical space infrastructure would be impacted by such a strike.[39]

Lowell Wood also of Johns Hopkins University, previously described the potential impact of EMP before a hearing of the House Armed Services Committee in 1997:

We essentially…move [the United States] back in time by about one century and you live like our grandfathers and great-grandfathers did in the 1890s until you rebuild. You do without telephones. You do without television, and you do without electric power…and if it happens that there is not enough fuel to heat with in the winter time and there is not enough food to go around because agriculture has become so inefficient and so on, the population simply shrinks to meet the carrying capacity of the system.[40]

This assessment led the EMP Commission to assert that a high-altitude or space-borne EMP strike upon the homeland could lead to many deaths over a short period of time. Commission member Ambassador Henry Cooper testified, “We do not have experience with losing the infrastructure in a country with 300 million people, most of whom don’t live in a way that provides for their own food and other needs.”[41] As a result of this lack of data and given our technology-dependent society and the populations presently considered, it appears 10 percent, or 30 million people, “would probably be the range where we could survive as a basically rural economy.”[42]

The threat of an EMP strike, from high altitudes or in orbital space, taking the United States back over a century to a rural society may seem far-fetched, but this is not just considered likely by security focused groups and think tanks, but also by studies conducted within the arms control community. This agreement by seemingly disparate agendas provides additional weight to the concerns regarding this threat.

In the early twenty-first century, most national economies are heavily dependent upon infrastructures, both terrestrial and space-based, that rely on electricity and electronics.[43] These infrastructures are interdependent and overlapping, creating a situation where even a localized impact in one or more urban areas could have tremendous negative consequences. An EMP explosion in or near an urban area or on a continental scale “has the capability to produce widespread and long-lasting disruption and damage to critical infrastructures, creating the possibility of long-term catastrophic consequences.”[44] It could not only “seriously degrade or shut down a large part of the electric power grid in the geographic area of EMP exposure near instantaneously, it could also lead to functional collapse of grids beyond the exposed area, as electrical effects propagate from one region to another.”[45]

When cut off from the communication, financial, and other society- supporting functions provided through critical infrastructures dependent upon electrical grids, “emergency response efforts are jeopardized, and fuel reserves for back-up systems and stocks of food and medicine will quickly be exhausted. The maintenance of a reasonable standard of health will not be possible without the rapid recovery of the economies critical industries. Prolonged disruption of these systems puts the survival of the population and the prospect of economic recover into question.”[46]

In addition to the terrestrial impacts that an EMP strike from space or high altitude could convey upon the civilian population, its impact upon our critical space infrastructure, which is interdependent with our terrestrial infrastructure, is also worth considering.[47]47

According to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, “there is little question that unhardened satellites are vulnerable to high altitude nuclear explosions.”[48] It is also consensus that “any country or organization with sufficient technology, missile lift, and guidance capability can damage or destroy a satellite in orbit using a number of different weapons and kill mechanisms.”[49] These can include everything from reversible attacks using radiofrequency jamming and lasers, to irreversible kinetic effects such as anti-satellite missiles and nuclear detonations.[50]
Strategists should leverage the proposed framework for space deterrence analysis throughout the vertical escalation dynamics, and at all thresholds, to ensure the proper foundations to develop an effective Defense Space Strategy.

Experts say that the use of a FOBS to execute an EMP strike upon the United States’ critical infrastructure by North Korea is more likely than a standard ICBM strike because such an attack “does not require an accurate guidance system because the area of effect, having a radius of hundreds or thousands of kilometers, is so large. No reentry vehicle is needed because the warhead is detonated above the atmosphere.”[51] This accessibility to technology for EMP from space makes for a very serious situation should a nation not deterred by traditional methods of deterrence and coercion gain the capacity to employ such technology. One of these nations of concern is North Korea.

According to the House Committee on Homeland Security, the North Koreans achieved what many thought impossible: they detonated a thermonuclear weapon. Following this test, the North Koreans released a technical report entitled, “The EMP Might of Nuclear Weapons” describing a capability similar to what Russia and China have called “Super-EMP” weapons.[52] North Korea also made a public statement after its thermonuclear test: its new weapon of “great destructive power” can “be detonated at high altitudes for super-powerful EMP attack according to [North Korean] strategic goals.”


Due to the changes in the strategic environment of space from one of perceived sanctuary to one of purposeful interference, testing of kinetic weapons, and the deployment of FOBS systems in Russia and perhaps North Korea, it becomes apparent that “thinking about the unthinkable” in space power contexts is warranted again. Strategists should leverage the proposed framework for space deterrence analysis throughout the vertical escalation dynamics, and at all thresholds, to ensure the proper foundations to develop an effective Defense Space Strategy and posture for the US Space Force and US Space Command. The next article in the series tests the framework by analyzing a non-peer adversary (North Korea) to see if the methodology enables understanding for the creation of an effective strategy and posture for the potential space power crises of the second nuclear age.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Manish_Sharma » 30 Jul 2020 21:11 ... ssile_test

2010 Chinese anti-ballistic missile test

The People's Republic of China carried out a land-based high-altitude anti-ballistic missile test on 11 January 2010.[1] This reportedly made China the second country[dubious – discuss] in the world after the United States of America to successfully destroy an incoming missile beyond the Earth's atmosphere.[2]

Possible purpose Edit
The test came just after an American official announced in Taipei that The Pentagon had just approved the sale of the MIM-104 Patriot missile system to Taiwan. In fact, the sale was part of a deal passed by the United States Congress more than a year before.[3] Beijing considers Taiwan to be part of its territory, and its Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Defense had voiced its strong opposition to these sales. Observers and analysts think the test was a response to the deal, and showed Beijing's stance on the issue.[3]

However, some others believe this test was routine, because[1] an article appeared in the PLA Daily as early as on November 12, 2009 claiming that a new type of Chinese missile provided anti-ballistic missile capability and would go to further tests. Recently, the statements from Zhu Zhuhua (朱祝华), a director of the People's Liberation Army Air Force Equipment Research Institute (解放军空军装备研究院) supported the claim.[1] Based on this analysis, the test was coincidental to Taiwan's weapon deal.

Basic information
The flight of Intercontinental ballistic missiles has three stages in air, the boost phase (the 1st phase), the mid-course phase (the 2nd phase), and the final reentry phase (also known as terminal phase).[1] The Chinese test targeted on the mid-course phase when the target was out of the atmosphere.[4] The test was said to be successful.[1][4] The full name of the test is called the Test of the Land-based Mid-course Phase Anti-ballistic Missile Interception Technology (simplified Chinese: 陆基中段反导拦截技术试验). However, the exact launch sites and types of these two missiles are not clarified in Chinese news, although it was rumored that the interceptor was designated the DN-1 or "Dong Neng 1".

According to The Pentagon, Beijing did not inform the test in advance.[3] And the statement "We detected two geographically separated missile launch events with an exo-atmospheric collision also being observed by space-based sensors",
by The Pentagon spokeswoman Major Maureen Schumann, also proves the profile and results of the test.[3]

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Re: Deterrence

Postby AdityaVM » 30 Jul 2020 21:58

X-post from Border security thread.

Arbit wrote:
RaviB wrote:
Please read the deterrence thread. What you're suggesting is basic Indian nuclear doctrine. Nuclear weapons are not meant for warfighting but for ensuring state survival and there has been a lot of discussion over nuclear strategy if it comes to the worst. They are useful for deterrence and little else. Nork nukes haven't led them to taking over New York but have kept the regime safe. That's it. India has a nuclear triad designed for a second strike capabiltiy.

Nukes have nothing to do with the current conflict apart from ensuring deterrence. So let's not derail this thread.

Voicing one's opinion is not derailing the thread. What i have stated is very much relevant to the matter at hand. you can not even dare to imagine that china can use nukes and yourself say "nuclear weapons are not meant for war fighting" yet you count it as deterrence. Ironical.

It becomes deterrence only when you are ready and willing to use the weapon.

Saar, you initial argument is based on a false premise. That being that India will not retaliate to China nuking Mumbai.

If India goes back 20 years because of nuking Mumbai, then how many years will China go back if we nuke Shanghai, Beijing,
Shenzhen etc ?

Coming to political will to nuke China, right from the time of ABV and continuing into MMS' regime, we have consistently emphasized that India will retaliate "massively" to inflict " unacceptable damage" to the enemy irrespective of the size of the nuke used against India.

This has been a policy that has been consistent and has been articulated at many international forums by the people who were in charge of executing it. They would not make such statements lightly and in jest.

Now, what could we possibly mean by saying " Unacceptable damage"?

Military targets, troops, airbases etc are implicitly acceptable targets during war and hence they are assumed to be in the category of " acceptable losses" as far as deterrence matrix is considered.

So, what comes under "Unacceptable"? Let me give you a hint. A country like India, considering the international situation when it first formulated its Nuclear Policy and doctrine cannot just come out and say " We will nuke your cities if you use nukes against us" no matter how rational it may have been.

It would have just strengthened the arguments of NPT Ayatollahs that India was a rogue and illegitimate nuclear power incapable of handling nukes responsibly, hence the Capping, Rolling back and Eliminating India's nuke arsenal should be an international priority.
It would have had adverse effects on India's ability to attract investments and caused other economical damage. It would not be a smart thing to do.

So, how do we say will nuke the ever-loving yellow stuff out of your cities with out actually saying it out loud ?


Hope this answers your question.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby vera_k » 31 Jul 2020 08:45

This runs counter to Indian nuclear doctrine. However, India should plan for first use against China given it has some advantages.

1. India is less urbanized than China, therefore much of the population is dispersed away from urban areas to a greater degree.
2. China is demographically below replacement level fertility. It is likely to fall into demographic collapse after being nuked.
3. China cannot be be trusted.

Not to mention that this will be far cheaper of a strategy than funding mountain divisions, submarines and aircraft carriers.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby williams » 31 Jul 2020 11:23

vera_k wrote:This runs counter to Indian nuclear doctrine. However, India should plan for first use against China given it has some advantages.

1. India is less urbanized than China, therefore much of the population is dispersed away from urban areas to a greater degree.
2. China is demographically below replacement level fertility. It is likely to fall into demographic collapse after being nuked.
3. China cannot be trusted.

Not to mention that this will be far cheaper of a strategy than funding mountain divisions, submarines, and aircraft carriers.

Well, India always considered nuclear weapons as deterrence against nuclear attack and never thought of it has deterrence against conventional attack or as an offensive capability. The moment you take away no-first-use, you are now considering nuclear weapons for offensive capability or as deterrence against conventional attack. IMHO we need to develop and demonstrate the conventional offensive capability against both our neighbors to deter any future conventional or low-intensity aggression. We demonstrated some such capability in the west, we need to do the same in the East. In the future, both these countries (Pakistan and China) are going to always opt of low-intensity aggression for various reason that is documented to death in BR. Detering that with nukes is not practical.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby pankajs » 31 Jul 2020 13:24

vera_k wrote:This runs counter to Indian nuclear doctrine. However, India should plan for first use against China given it has some advantages.

1. India is less urbanized than China, therefore much of the population is dispersed away from urban areas to a greater degree.
2. China is demographically below replacement level fertility. It is likely to fall into demographic collapse after being nuked.
3. China cannot be be trusted.

Not to mention that this will be far cheaper of a strategy than funding mountain divisions, submarines and aircraft carriers.
The logic that works for China works for India too i.e. to say IFF India nukes China what do we expect China will do in that case? Send flower tipped missiles to India?

  1. Both India and China have a NFU policy i.e. to say that Nukes are for deterrence and not for war fighting. There remain the question of "China cannot be trusted wrt it NFU". We will address it later.
  2. Wrt pt 1, While India is less urbanized than China, it is more densely packed than China in its cities. Just compare Beijing to New Delhi on pop/sq Km. The devastation will be equally in both countries.

    Btw, there is also a technical point. One nuke per city will not be sufficient to annihilate an Indian city or a Chinese city. Our current arsenal is quite inadequate to flatten more than a dozen top Chinese city.

    Net/net on can assume that nuke war will be equally devastating to both thus unwinnable.
  3. Wrt pt 2, As explained in previous point, nuke wars are unwinnable. A "winner" will also be a massive looser. China is already on a path to "demographic collapse" but playing nuke/nuke will set India back by at least a generation or two.
  4. Wrt pt3, While China cannot be trusted with NFU, India can build up its capabilities enough, numbers of its nukes, delivery platforms and assurance of a crippling 2nd strike, to convince the Chinese of a nuke war's futility.
  5. Finally, a China that wants to replace America as the dominant power in Asia/World would be foolish to start a nuke war with India and allow America a further 2 generation of Global leadership.

    I don't believe the Chinese are so foolish not to understand that dynamics. However, India can and should prepare to deal with the foolishness by reinforcing a robust 2nd strike capability. Pre-empting a power like China is not the answer.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby souravB » 02 Aug 2020 17:06

A blood boiling read on how Holland let Photuchor get away with all the data and components and Unkil didn't lift a finger.
How Holland helped Pak get it's atim bum

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Re: Deterrence

Postby anmol » 02 Aug 2020 20:52

The link may not work for everyone, so posting here.

Nuclear secrets: the Dutch whistleblower who tried to stop Pakistan’s bomb

In the early 1970s, the Dutch technician Frits Veerman shared a large desk in a lab in Amsterdam with a charming Pakistani scientist named Abdul. One day, Veerman mentioned that he’d like to visit Pakistan. He asked if he could stay a few nights with his colleague’s family. Abdul — full name Abdul Qadeer Khan — replied that Pakistan’s government would pay for his entire trip. That’s when Veerman began to suspect that Khan was stealing Dutch nuclear secrets.

The evidence was everywhere. Veerman’s job was photography, and he’d once spent days with Khan snapping ultracentrifuges, the devices used to enrich uranium. He saw drawings of centrifuges and classified reports lying around Khan’s living room. And he says Khan once confided that his large gold ring was “my pocket money for if I ever need to leave somewhere quickly”.

How did Veerman feel when he realised the truth? “Frightened,” he replies. Now in his seventies, with short dark hair and rimless glasses, he is eating pasta on a restaurant terrace in Antwerp, Belgium, where we have arranged to meet. If you had to guess his profession, you’d say: retired technician. He’s a provincial Dutchman whose life was derailed by nuclear espionage.

Veerman first tried to report Khan to the Dutch authorities in 1973. He didn’t make it past a secretary. Had he been heard, then or later, the world might have been spared a nightmare. The Dutch allowed Khan to leave their country in 1975 and to keep visiting European suppliers. The US Central Intelligence Agency didn’t stop him either. Khan ended up building Pakistan’s nuclear bomb and selling the technology to Iran, North Korea and Libya. 

This January, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists moved its Doomsday Clock to 100 seconds to midnight, the latest it has stood since its creation in 1947. The clock symbolises the risk of human extinction. The Bulletin cited threats including “a renewed nuclear arms race . . . the proliferation of nuclear weapons and . . . lowered barriers to nuclear war”, potentially involving Khan’s clients North Korea and Iran.

After Veerman blew the whistle, he lost his job. A report this month by the Huis voor Klokkenluiders, the new Dutch Whistleblowers Authority, finally absolves him. It also helps explain why he and not Khan was punished.

Khan is now 84, and living under unofficial house arrest in Pakistan, where he has long had an up-and-down relationship with the authorities. He is closely escorted by security officials during his restricted movements, while any visitors to his home are screened in advance.

He was born in Bhopal, British India, in 1936, the son of a Muslim headmaster. He has said that as a child, during India’s partition in 1947, he saw trains carrying corpses of Muslims killed in sectarian fighting, write Douglas Frantz and Catherine Collins in The Nuclear Jihadist. Khan left India for Pakistan in 1952, after finishing high school. On the train journey, an Indian policeman stole his gold pen. “Hindus are crooks and mischievous,” the young Khan told a friend. “They are dreaming of destroying Pakistan to create a united India.”

In 1961, he went to study in Berlin, and in 1963 switched to the Dutch technical university, Delft, to study metallurgy. Looking back, he said: “Whatever I learnt, and whatever I know, I owe a great deal to Delft.” After Delft, he did his doctorate in Louvain, Belgium. In 1971, Pakistan lost a war with India, and the new state of Bangladesh was carved out of Pakistani territory. Khan wept, write Frantz and Collins. A year later he joined FDO, the in-house lab of the VMF industrial company, as a metallurgical scientist.

FDO was designing ultracentrifuges to enrich uranium. The Dutch didn’t have atom bombs, and the enrichment was intended for peaceful nuclear energy. But if the uranium was enriched further, it could be used to make bombs.

FDO had specified that Khan wouldn’t work on ultracentrifuges and noted that his wife’s family was Dutch. The Dutch intelligence service, then called the Binnenlandse Veiligheidsdienst (BVD), cleared him for secret work. And so, in 1972, Khan and Veerman — by then a technical photographer — became office mates. FDO was based in an old storehouse of the Dutch East India Company. Veerman had recently emerged from four years’ working alone in its cellar, perfecting details of the ultracentrifuge, which consisted of six cylinders on top of each other. It took art to keep them spinning, he recounts lovingly.

Veerman was born in 1944 in Huizen, a village where families had known each other for centuries. He still lives there: he can see his childhood home from his garden. His mother, a German, moved to the Netherlands before the war. ­Hitler’s occupation made her ashamed of her nationality. Each May 5, Dutch Liberation Day, “wasn’t a happy moment in the Veerman family”, he recalls. His paternal grandmother called him “a rotten Muff”, a pejorative for German. 

Joris van Wijk, a TV producer who is planning a series around Veerman, says: “The Netherlands after the war was an unfriendly place for kids with a German mother. Frits will have had a hard time. It must have impacted the development of his social skills. He ended up living with his parents into his thirties.” 

On visits to his mother’s family, Veerman would hear about relatives stuck in East Germany and meet others who seemed to have dubious wartime pasts. Earlier than most Dutch people, he learnt that terrible things happened in the world. This made him very cautious when he began handling nuclear secrets.

He had always had a gift for ­science. As a working-class boy, he attended technical schools. FDO was his dream job, the university he’d never had, “a playground for hobbyists of a high technical level”, he says. He built his own telescope at work. He loved learning from graduate colleagues. But they expected him to fetch coffee.

Khan was different. Abdul, as Veerman still calls him, was friendly, handsome, smiled easily and spoke good Dutch. A Pakistani in the 1970s’ Netherlands was an exotic creature. Veerman brought Khan cheese from Huizen. On quiet afternoons they played tennis at the FDO’s courts by the river. They visited each other’s homes: Khan lived in a brick terraced house, the epitome of Dutchness, near Schiphol airport.

FDO made ultracentrifuges for Urenco, a company with a plant in Almelo, a small town in the eastern Netherlands whose dullness was famously encapsulated by the ­comedian Herman Finkers: “A traffic light turns red, another green. In Almelo, there’s always something to do.” Khan found something to do there.

When Veerman’s suspicions about Khan crystallised, he initially didn’t know what to do. Khan was his senior. Veerman’s boss had known Khan since Delft. Eventually, Veerman went to a phone booth on Amsterdam’s Czaar Peterstraat and rang the director of Ultra-Centrifuge Nederland, which oversaw Dutch ultracentrifuges. The man’s secretary answered. She wouldn’t put Veerman through to the director, so he told her his suspicions. She said she’d pass it on. Later, having heard nothing more, he called again, fruitlessly.

Looking back, he muses, “I should have gone there and rung at the door and told the directorate, and it would all have ended differently. But I wasn’t that mouthy then.” He says he mentioned his suspicions to senior people at FDO, but they didn’t seem interested.

Meanwhile, Khan had begun doing work at Urenco, roaming the plant undisturbed despite lacking the right security clearance. Nobody seemed to mind. It was the cold war and the Dutch were looking out for snooping Soviets, not Pakistanis. 

Yet the Indian subcontinent was hotting up. In May 1974, India tested its first nuclear weapon. Khan wrote to Pakistani officials, offering to help build the “Islamic bomb”. In September, the prime minister, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, decided to gamble on him. Pakistan’s embassy in The Hague contacted Khan. Just then, Khan had another breakthrough, write Frantz and Collins: his employers asked him to translate German documents describing a new centrifuge into Dutch. He did the work at the “brain box” in Almelo, where the plant’s most sensitive information was kept. He was assembling quite a package.

But others now suspected him. A Pakistani diplomat had begun ordering parts from suppliers of Urenco and it was noticed that some orders had the same specifications as those used by Urenco. In October 1975, at a nuclear trade show in Basel, Dutch BVD agents trailed Khan as he questioned vendors about nuclear weapons.

This is the moment when Khan could have been stopped. The BVD made plans to arrest him at FDO when he arrived for work one ­morning, write Frantz and Collins. The Dutch foreign ministry approved. But Ruud Lubbers, then minister of economics, was opposed: a scandal could damage the high-tech sector.

The Dutch briefed the CIA on Khan, Lubbers told Japanese TV in 2005. The Americans opposed the nuclear ambitions of their Pakistani allies. Nonetheless, the CIA stopped the BVD from arresting Khan. The Americans wanted to watch him, so as to track Pakistan’s nuclear procurement and Europe’s secretive nuclear suppliers.

The CIA’s failure to stop him in 1975 “was the first monumental error”, Robert Einhorn, who worked on nonproliferation in the Clinton and Obama administrations, told Frantz and Collins.

The Americans asked the Dutch “to inform them fully but not take any action”, Lubbers recalled, laughing. He said he “found it a bit strange”, but also thought, “‘OK, it’s American business.’ We didn’t feel . . . safeguarding the world against nuclear proliferation as a Dutch responsibility.” The business of the Netherlands was business. The CIA would watch Khan for decades.

FDO didn’t tell Khan he was under suspicion. It gave him a new job, calling it a promotion, and said he could stop visiting Almelo. He may have realised the game was up. On December 15 1975 he flew to Pakistan on leave, taking his wife, daughters and blueprints of centrifuges. Soon afterwards, from Pakistan, he resigned from FDO.

On January 15 1976, Khan sent Veerman a handwritten letter in Dutch from Karachi that began:

Dear Frits,
It’s now almost a month that we’re out of the Netherlands and gradually I’m starting to miss the tasty chicken. Every afternoon I think: let’s ask Frits if he feels like eating chicken!

The letter then asked him to help Khan’s wife Henny (presumably back in the Netherlands to pack up the family’s possessions) empty his locker at FDO into a cardboard box one Saturday morning. Veerman didn’t. He knew the locker was full of drawings and parts of ultracentrifuges. Khan’s letter also urged him to request a Pakistani visa. It seemed Khan needed his help in completing Pakistan’s Project 706: getting the bomb. Van Wijk, the TV producer, says: “I think Khan recognised Frits’s brilliance.”

In September 1976, FDO held a meeting about Khan. Veerman told his colleagues that he thought Khan was a spy. FDO doesn’t seem to have launched an investigation or taken measures, says the Dutch Whistleblowers Authority.

Later, Veerman detailed Khan’s actions to BVD agents. But his speaking out was unpopular. There had been rejoicing within FDO when an executive returned from a visit to ex-employee Khan in Pakistan with orders of work. Pakistani technicians began visiting FDO for what Veerman calls “a course in ‘how to build an ultracentrifuge’”.

Whistleblowers are commonly punished. The Dutch authority’s report is cautious, given the time that has elapsed, but says it is “plausible” that this is what happened to Veerman. Soon after he spoke out, FDO demoted him to photocopying work. When he wrote to Khan, complaining about his treatment and sending cheese, Khan commiserated. In 1977, Khan wrote again:

Dear Frits,
Strictly confidential I am requesting your help. I urgently need the following information for our research programme:
1. Etches of axles
(a)Potential how many volts?
2. Lower absorber
Can you arrange for an entire CNOR lower absorber? Will you please give my affectionate greetings to Frencken and try to get [one] for me. [Etcetera]

Khan added that there was “lots of photo-work” for Veerman in Pakistan, promising: “You’ll surely have a lot of fun and won’t regret it . . . When you write me, please do not write your own address on the envelope please. Instead of my name just put ‘Mrs Khan’ or even just Henny and then the home address.”

Veerman didn’t reply to the letter. He showed it to his bosses, who told him to destroy it. He kept it in his safe instead. In 1978, the day Veerman returned from his honeymoon, a postman handed him a telex from FDO informing him of his redundancy. The stated reason was that photography work had dried up.

Why was Veerman sacked? A former Dutch security investigator, who handled the Khan case from 1979, told the whistleblowers authority that Veerman was “sacrificed” because he wouldn’t stop talking. FDO’s security had been lax, the Netherlands and its high-tech sector were embarrassed, those involved didn’t want the story to reach the media or other countries, and the junior employee had to shut up. This is what Veerman had always suspected.

No other Dutch tech company would hire him. Is Veerman bitter? The question seems to surprise him. He doesn’t have a large emotional vocabulary. “I don’t cry about it all day. A great injustice was done to me, but I don’t think about it much. When something like that happens, you have to make an assessment — maybe I am too sober — and go on.” 

Now, with the whistleblowers’ report, Veerman plans to seek compensation from the Dutch state and the present incarnation of FDO’s former holding company, VMF-Stork (FDO closed in 1992). The current Stork, which now consists of a very different set of operating companies, says it “has fully co-operated with the investigation [by the Dutch Whistleblowers Authority], even though this question is from a very long time ago . . . The ­current Stork cannot be regarded as Mr Veerman’s employer, as the Authority’s report confirms.”

Veerman continued to receive lucrative offers. “I could have got 500,000 guilders from Abdul if I’d wanted,” he muses. He says diplomats from Iran, Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries called him at home, offering him visitors’ visas. In the end, he requested a secret phone number.

His life took a different path. When he went to apply for unemployment benefit, he found his local social security agency a mess. He asked to see the manager, who ended up offering him a job paying less than half what he’d earned at FDO. Yet, he says: “It was the biggest luck of my life that I could land there.” He stayed in the Dutch social security administration until retirement — not “the glittering career I had dreamt of”, he says. But he enjoyed the work.

In his first weeks there, BVD agents kept coming to see him. “What’s this about?” his boss asked. “Nuclear bombs,” said Veerman. Agents also visited his house, once interrogating him in his bedroom while his family was celebrating his birthday. The BVD suggested he could be prosecuted as Khan’s accomplice. (Veerman’s request to see his BVD file has been denied.)

Meanwhile, Khan regularly flew into Brussels, then drove to nearby countries visiting suppliers and scientists. The BVD took no action, even when Dutch businessman Nico Zondag reported in 1977 that Pakistan was seeking products to build a nuclear bomb. A Dutch foreign-ministry official wrote in a memo in 1984 that exports to Pakistan continued, “including essential bomb components that for whatever reason couldn’t be blocked”. 

Khan said in 1987 that Europeans were keen sellers: “People chased us with figures and details of equipment they had sold to Almelo and Capenhurst [the British site of another Urenco plant]. They literally begged us to buy their equipment.” There were few restrictions on such exports in those days. If an item seemed particularly problematic, the trick was to conceal its destination by routing it through an inoffensive third country.

A small country with an impenetrable language can generally keep national embarrassments secret. The Dutch government commissioned a report on Khan only in 1979, after the German TV channel ZDF — using sources other than Veerman — revealed Khan’s espionage to the world. Nobody then thought Pakistan was close to getting the bomb and the CIA believed it had the matter under control, but the Netherlands — a vocal supporter of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty of 1968 — was humiliated in front of its allies. 

In 1983, Veerman was summoned to a meeting at the Bijlmer prison. There, he later told the whistleblowers authority, government officials ordered him to keep quiet about Khan “because the Netherlands’ international relations and reputation were at risk, and the interests of Dutch industry”. When he said he’d keep speaking out, an executive from FDO snapped that speaking out had got him fired — thereby blowing the company’s cover story. 

Veerman went straight from the meeting to a Dutch newspaper, but afterwards retreated into his social security job and was hardly heard of again in public for decades until now. He was also put on an international watchlist and for many years was questioned by the authorities when he travelled abroad. On one family holiday in Italy, his car was stopped by armed police.

In 1983 the Netherlands sentenced Khan in absentia to four years in jail for seeking secret information. The main evidence was his letters to Veerman. Khan was offended by the verdict and his biographer Zahid Malik would record his complaint that two of the judges were Jews. Later, his sentence was overturned because he hadn’t been served the summons. The Dutch then abandoned prosecution of the most consequential crime committed on their territory since the second world war. The ministry of justice later admitted that Khan’s legal file had gone missing.

Lubbers, who became prime minister in 1982, wanted Khan arrested but was told to “leave it to the [intelligence] services”. Looking back, he told the Argos radio show: “The last word is Washington. There is no doubt they knew everything, heard everything. There is an open line between The Hague and Washington . . . It was very dumb.” Khan was allowed to return to the Netherlands repeatedly, including for a visit to his dying father-in-law in 1992.

The CIA’s former director of central intelligence, George Tenet, once boasted: “We were inside [Khan’s] residence, inside his facilities, inside his rooms.” Yet the Americans missed a lot, partly because they expected Pakistan to pursue a bomb made with plutonium rather than uranium. They were also late to realise that Khan had opened a nuclear supermarket, offering starter kits to many countries including Syria and Saudi Arabia. Decades after leaving the Netherlands, he was still selling Dutch knowledge. He grew rich. In 1998, he also became celebrated as “Mohsin e-Pakistan” (Saviour of Pakistan), after the country detonated six nuclear bombs at a test site. 

Proof of his sales emerged in 2003, when the US Navy intercepted a ship carrying nuclear technology from one of his factories to Libya. Later, the Libyans handed the Americans two plastic bags (bearing the names of an Islamabad tailor and a dry cleaner) that contained bomb designs. In 2004, Khan confessed on live television to transferring the technology to Libya, Iran and North Korea. By then, the US couldn’t demand his punishment, as Pakistan was an ally in the “war on terror”.

Meanwhile, the Dutch government admitted in 2004 that Iranian centrifuges had been seen that used “Urenco technology from the 1970s”. Pakistan’s centrifuges were similar. The Dutch foreign ministry told the FT: “The Netherlands attaches great importance to the Non-proliferation Treaty and the prevention of proliferation. The Netherlands did not actively contribute to unwanted proliferation of knowledge.”

Khan later withdrew his confession. Some years ago, an American documentary-maker arranged for Veerman to phone his old friend. Khan, who resents being painted as a common spy, told him, “Frits, you are the biggest liar around.” Khan is now out of favour with Pakistan’s government. Security forces personnel installed in the house next door block him from meeting his relatives, friends and lawyers, he complained in an appeal to Pakistan’s Supreme Courtlast month.

How does Veerman view him now? Veerman reflects, then says: “He has performed great services for his country. He became a spy, in my view. That doesn’t mean I’m hostile towards him. When we spent time together, I thought he was a nice man.”

Veerman is harsher about his own country: “If Iran ever manages to destroy Israel, they could put on the weapons, ‘Made in Holland.’”

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Joined: 09 Feb 2009 16:58

Re: Deterrence

Postby wig » 03 Aug 2020 17:53 ... 2020-08-03

China’s Kashgar airbase: Underground vaults hint at nuclear facilities, H-6 bombers seen since early June
extracted- should be gone through
An underground vault construction in China’s Kashgar airbase months before the India-China standoff started in Ladakh shows how People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) has been ramping up infrastructure for air power, satellite images analysed by India Today’s OSINT team suggest.

The underground construction that could be used to conceal nuclear warheads is among the many strategies adopted by China taking an aggressive stand against India including the deployment of its H-6 bomber aircraft in Kashgar. Thr H-6 bomber aircraft was recently part of war games by in the South China Sea.

The Kashgar airbase is 475 km away from the Karakoram Pass and is seen as a direct deployment against India.

From the Finger 4 area of the Pangong Lake that has been the biggest flashpoint Kashgar is 690 km. The distance of Daulat Beg Oldie, India’s airfield in eastern Ladakh at more than 16,000 feet the distance to Kashgar is 490 km.

The underground vaults are weapons storage and security systems built under the floors of protective aircraft shelters.

These are built to avoid carriage of nuclear weapons from the weapon storage area or igloos to the aircraft which otherwise would require protection party during even the small movements.

These are invariably automated to protect and safeguard nuclear weapons from unauthorised use and mishandling.

The vaults generally contain two to four weapons and can be fed to the same hardened shelter or nearby shelter through automated conveyor belt system.

Sources said such underground vault seems to suggest the presence of secret weapons or nuclear heads.

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Re: Deterrence

Postby Rsatchi » 04 Aug 2020 17:30

N Korea has 'probably' developed nuclear devices to fit ball ..
Read more at: ... go-nuclear
These are worrying signs!!
Somehow I feel Cheen and Napaks are involved in these shenanigans!
No wonder Turdogan was so chummy with Dimran and Napak!
If this is true DT will find it difficult during Presidential Debates what with COVID n ECONOMY already in trouble!!

BRF Oldie
Posts: 3391
Joined: 19 Jan 2005 01:05
Location: Pindi

Re: Deterrence

Postby rsingh » 04 Aug 2020 18:23

vera_k wrote:This runs counter to Indian nuclear doctrine. However, India should plan for first use against China given it has some advantages.

1. India is less urbanized than China, therefore much of the population is dispersed away from urban areas to a greater degree.
2. China is demographically below replacement level fertility. It is likely to fall into demographic collapse after being nuked.
3. China cannot be be trusted.

Not to mention that this will be far cheaper of a strategy than funding mountain divisions, submarines and aircraft carriers.

People breed like mushrooms right after wars , draughts and other widespread calamities. Historical records back this.

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