Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

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jambudvipa
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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby jambudvipa » 16 May 2011 15:00

Atriji,excellent write up on Chandragiri.Will defiantely visit it sometime.Could you add some photos if possible?

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby brihaspati » 16 May 2011 17:08

ManishH wrote:
brihaspati wrote:While at it, please look at the very early connection of money/trade/minting/royalty with monasteries. Coin hoards/minting equipment appears to have been found in monasterial sites.


Well the coin hoards in Buddhist viharas could have been banks. Eg. sultans would trust their harem to eunuchs, similarily society could have trusted these monasteries with wealth. Of course, human nature might have succumbed to temptation and fear as your excerpts from Chachnama clearly say. But it is unwise to lay the blame for corrupt priesthood on the faith.

In today's times, not taking Buddhism along in the struggle for national survival is a liability. It'll open up more fissures. Trying to be indirect here, but Ambedkarism is in it's stridency and those forces should be aligned to national goals, not to be needled about their past. I'm against similar needling by using words like "Brahminism" and the implication that blame for past social weaknesses lies on one group.

Applicability of Kibbutz solution is very apt in J&K today. Although, I confess, I hadn't realized before this discussion that without cultural unity, they'll be a non-starter.


I was taking this up on the historical representation of Buddhism as reformist etc. In earlier strat scenarios threads I was an early proponent of raising the 'Buddhist" connection - to the SE and East. I was strongly for refocusing on GV as a centre for Buddhism through re-raising the Vihara-monasteries of Odantapuri and Nalanda for a start.

However, we should be aware of the potential weaknesses. And yes, there is more to the "coin hoards" "minting" story than mere banking. OT.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby Atri » 16 May 2011 20:48

jambudvipa wrote:Atriji,excellent write up on Chandragiri.Will defiantely visit it sometime.Could you add some photos if possible?


Updated... Also check the Forts Dhaga on military forum.. :)

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 17 May 2011 03:16

X-post...

IAF against creating CDS ‘in present format’

.....
The IAF chief, Air Chief Marshal P.V. Naik, told a seminar on national security reforms that he disfavoured the creation of a CDS ‘in the present format’ as it would create obstructions in the existing security apparatus.

‘I would like to emphasise and reiterate that the IAF is all for the formation of CDS, but we are against appointment of CDS in the present format. The appointment in this format will only create another obstruction to the system,’ :cry: Naik said here at the seminar organised by the Centre for Land Warfare and Studies (CLAWS).

The Kargil Review Committee headed by the late security analyst, K. Subramanyam, was set up in the backdrop of the India-Pakistan war in the Kargil sector of Jammu and Kashmir. It had proposed a CDS to enable jointness among the army, navy and air force and to act as a single-point adviser to the government on security, a gap found during the 1999 operations.

Though the proposal is more than a decade old, Defence Minister A.K. Antony has on several occasions told parliament that consensus among political parties on the CDS was lacking.

Political consensus apart, there was no unanimity among the three services on the CDS.

Naik said the IAF was not ready to accept the appointment a four-star or five-star serving officer as the CDS, saying the he would not have the wherewithal to execute his duties. :?:

Favouring the continuance of the existing structure of command with each service individually communicating with the defence ministry, the IAF chief said: ‘Our existing system, without a CDS, has worked well in last 40-50 years. We fought four wars in 1947, 1969, 1971 and Kargil without any major glitches.’ :(( :eek: :( :cry:

Contesting the suggestion that the CDS could be the most important reform in the defence sphere, Naik said: ‘Lots of people think that by withholding the appointment of CDS, the government has actually weakened the pace and quality of military reforms.’

Referring to the CDS format of other countries, he said the model varies from country to country.

In United States, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff controls the operations; in Australia, the CDS and the defence secretary are parallel and report to their equivalent of the defence minister. Which model do we want to adopt,’ he asked.

Naik dubbed the CDS concept a ‘foreign’ idea and called for ‘strengthening the Chiefs of Staff Committee’ as the first step in the security reforms. ‘Setting up new structures will not make the system more efficient or effective,’ he said.

Stressing the need for a national security doctrine and a White Paper on defence, Naik pitched for a regular dialogue between the political and military leadership of the country, saying it was essential for India, which faced a large number of military and non-military threats.

{So he is aware of the issues yet doesn't want to solve them. Throwing out foreign solutions is OK. But what is his solution? Can't be the same as last 40-50 years. There was chaos during May 1999 that is why the KRC recommended single point of advice. Not three points of advice. The IAF chief wanted more time. The Army Dy Chief wanted to wait for his boss to come back form Poland. The IN moved the fleet to battle stations.}


At present there is no political interface. One very good step that has been taken is that the three service chiefs have been participating in the meetings of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS). It is a good step in my opinion. A lot of our inputs have been taken and acted upon by the government,’ he added.

{This is token move to get around the lack of CDS. The real reason is he is not confident that a CDS will be form IAF. Both IN and IAF have shown they have great leaders who can step into that role.}


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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ManishH » 24 Jun 2011 09:17

Chorus within govt for national security doctrine


NEW DELHI: The demand for India to put in writing a National Security Doctrine is growing within the government. This comes even as the Manmohan Singh government has decided on a comprehensive review of national security. The last time such a review was undertaken was after Kargil conflict of 1999.

Senior officials said they are hopeful that the task force, to be headed by former cabinet secretary Naresh Chandra, would end up helping the government to finally come out with the country's first National Security Doctrine.

The doctrine/strategy would define India's security concerns and how it plans to approach them. The doctrine would look at all aspects of security including the economic, technological, political and scientific.

"Everything would flow from the National Security Doctrine," the head of a major security agency of the government said, pointing out that his organization too had recently taken up with the government the need for such a doctrine. He hoped that the Naresh Chandra committee would help India finally have its own National Security Doctrine/Strategy.

He pointed out that such a doctrine would also help better utilize national assets and set specific targets for various organizations. For example, he said, the indigenization of critical technologies, undertaken mostly by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has not been satisfactory.

"If we have written, defined national security objectives then there would also be higher level of accountability among all concerned," the head of another agency said.

The lack of a national security strategy is also hampering several other key aspects of India's security apparatus. For example, India's Special Forces are directionless thanks to the absence of a defined national strategy. "Once you have a strategy, from it will flow the national security objectives. It would include India's interests in the region and the role of Special Forces," says Lt Gen PC Katoch, a retired Special Forces officer.

In most developed countries, National Security Doctrines are among the key documents defining the nation-state. In the US by law every president has to present his security strategy to the Congress. Barack Obama released a 52-page strategy in May 2010, significantly differing with George Bush. In contrast to the Bush strategy that spoke about Islamic radicalism and gave overarching approval for unilateral military efforts abroad, Obama called for global cooperation and placed focus also on climate issues.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 24 Jun 2011 09:44

Adm Cunningham of the RIN once said" Naming enemies, creates them." This was quoted by Adm. Kohli. Sometimes while you are still growing its not better to enunciate your aims and goals. I wonder what prevents the GOI senior officers to need direction on such an important matter. Maybe lot of internal bickering and turf wars going on.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby UBanerjee » 24 Jun 2011 11:08

ramana wrote:Adm Cunningham of the RIN once said" Naming enemies, creates them."


Cue GWB's Axis of Evil speech!

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby Arjun » 24 Jun 2011 11:51

On balance, considering the significant benefits to be derived from increased accountability, sense of direction and greater sophistication of analysis that comes from sharing a strategy with a wider group - a national security doctrine makes sense.

As regards, naming specific countries - in some cases they can be named - and in other cases left more open-ended.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby devesh » 25 Jun 2011 19:21

a "national security doctrine" doesn't have to name any countries. the strategic objectives should be carefully masked. but the tactical needs and goals should be clearly defined. this gives a sense of purpose to the various arms of the GoI to work for those tactical objectives which in turn improve the overall strategic picture and the top officers and officials can ensure that strategic objectives are being taken care of. the "doctrine" is tactical manual that underlines the immediate goals to be achieved. I personally think there should be different goal-oriented "doctrines" for different National security functions. DRDO can have one. MEA can have one. etc. the broad National Security Doctrine basically accumulates all of these into one piece and summarizes.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 02 Sep 2011 09:32

Sandy Gordon, an Australian scholar and expert o India:


India's strategy as an emerging power

He has been single mindedly focused on rise of India for quite a few decades.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby JE Menon » 02 Sep 2011 15:58

And a very keen observer he is too.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 07 Sep 2011 05:09

From Ram Narayanan:

Dear Friends:

QUOTES from the article below:

“We have celebrated our 64th independence day, and we still don’t have a national security strategy,” Lieut Gen Katoch said. “The ministry of defence does not have a set-up for strategic thinking”. He added that 11th five-year defence plan had still not received official approval even though it ends next year.

Indian commanders are particularly frustrated by delays surrounding the establishment of an Mountain Strike Corps along its Himalayan border with China, in response to People’s Liberation Army-related infrastructure projects in Tibet.

Civil servants in the defence ministry have questioned the Rs120bn ($2.6bn) deployment of high-altitude troops in the region, over which China and India fought a short war in 1962. “It’s mandatory that we develop our mountain warfare,” said Col. Kundra. “Look how China has modernised infrastructure in the Tibetan autonomous area. We need to do the same on our side [of the border].”

What sort of a government does India have? Or, does it have any, one wonders? As for the quality of the file pushing civil servants of India, the less said the better.

While one hopes Anna Hazare's movement will help drastically reduce the degree of corruption the common man faces in India, one also wishes another Anna Hazare will arise to shake up the lethargic Indian administration which seems to have learnt no lesson from the debacle of 1962.

As I said at an informal chat with distinguished friends during my recent visit to New Delhi and Chennai:

"People who lived through the nightmare of 1962, as I did, will recall with horror how an ill-prepared India facing defeat had to suffer the ultimate humiliation -- a pathetic sight indeed -- of a proud Jawaharlal Nehru having to appeal in utter desperation to President Kennedy to rush urgent military supplies to India .....The question for deep consideration is this: DO INDIANS WANT THAT SHAMEFUL EPISODE TO GET REPEATED ONCE MORE AND IN THE PROCESS LOSE SOME MORE TERRITORY?

"The ideal approach to India's defence policy is to make her self reliant to the extent possible for all her requirements of major weaponry. I hope India has initiated or will initiate suitable steps to substantially get to that position by 2020.

"As of now, that is NOT a practical proposition. So, what's the next best option? Shouldn't India leverage on the one great advantage she enjoys over China, viz. access to the most sophisticated weapons systems of the United States which are NOT available to China?

"All that India needs to do over the next five years or so is to equip her army, navy and air force with weaponry the Chinese cannot match in effectiveness for many years to come.

"ALONG WITH BETTER PLANNING AND TRAINING , QUALITY CAN DEFEAT QUANTITY SHOULD THE CHINESE COMMUNISTS EVER THINK OF TRYING TO DO A I962 ONCE AGAIN.

"ARE INDIA'S DEFENCE PLANNERS LISTENING?"


Best wishes,

Ram
-----------------------------

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/b46e4d34 ... z1XClgFevc

FINANCIAL TIMES

September 5, 2011 2:30 pm
Indian military officers voice fears on defence

By James Lamont in New Delhi

Senior Indian military officers have voiced their concerns about a widening gap between India and China’s defence capabilities, as New Delhi falls behind in the modernisation of its armed forces.

At a time when Beijing is unveiling advanced military hardware , including a prototype stealth fighter jet and its first aircraft carrier, India’s military establishment is increasingly critical of bureaucratic paralysis in New Delhi, where the government has been beset by anti-corruption protests.

Indian commanders say the government’s reluctance to take decisions is severely hampering their ability to guard against a “collusive threat” from two nuclear armed neighbours – China and its ally Pakistan.

“Our defence budget is $32bn, China’s is $91.5bn. Their unofficial spending probably takes the total to $150bn. How are we going to match up?” said P.C. Katoch, a retired lieutenant general.

Colonel Rajesh Kundra, director of the Perspective Planning Directorate at the Ministry of Defence, added that India’s defence budget had lacked consistency over the past six decades, “waxing and waning” in response to crises rather than preparing for them.

Their misgivings come as China becomes more assertive across the region. Last week the Indian government acknowledged that one of its warships was challenged by the Chinese navy off the coast of Vietnam in late July. On Monday, China’s foreign ministry denied that there had been a confrontation.

While India is currently one of the biggest arms buyers in the world and maintains a 1.1m-strong army, both serving and retired officers are critical of both the country’s strategic planning and politicians suspicious of military spending given the country’s pressing development needs.

“We have celebrated our 64th independence day, and we still don’t have a national security strategy,” Lieut Gen Katoch said. “The ministry of defence does not have a set-up for strategic thinking”. He added that 11th five-year defence plan had still not received official approval even though it ends next year.

“The instruments of state action have become dysfunctional,” says K. Shankar Bajpai, the chairman of India’s National Security Advisory Board and former ambassador to the US. “India’s strategic interests extend between the Suez and Shanghai … but we have neither the manpower nor the strategic thinking to handle these challenges.”

Indian commanders are particularly frustrated by delays surrounding the establishment of an Mountain Strike Corps along its Himalayan border with China, in response to People’s Liberation Army-related infrastructure projects in Tibet.

Civil servants in the defence ministry have questioned the Rs120bn ($2.6bn) deployment of high-altitude troops in the region, over which China and India fought a short war in 1962.
“It’s mandatory that we develop our mountain warfare,” said Col. Kundra. “Look how China has modernised infrastructure in the Tibetan autonomous area. We need to do the same on our side [of the border].”

Additional reporting by Girija Shivakumar in New Delhi


There is a strategic review led by Naresh Chandra underway. Will see what comes out.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby SSridhar » 07 Sep 2011 10:32

Ramana, the two articles you have quoted are in direct contrast. As for the questioning by the bureaucrats on the expenditure for the new Strike Corps etc., these bureaucrats must be asked by the Defence Minister to patrol the LAC for two months a year during the winter as George Fernandes did when the Army asked for snow mobiles in Siachen.

But, I have an issue with the first article regarding getting weaponry from the US. As we know, critical arms acquisition from the US is fraught with its own dangers. Until the US-Pakistan relationship deteriorates to a level of no-return and PRC becomes much more menacing to US interests in the region and beyond, US may not sell top-drawer items to India without much conditions. In the meanwhile, we have to seek less-intrusive and more reliable vendors from Europe even if the product is a notch or two less sophisticated. GoI is in a tricky situation, but IMO, are doing pretty well in the present situation. We are definitely not in a 1962-like situation though much urgency on the part of GoI in strengthening infrastructure and capabilities in North East is imperative. The deepening military, diplomatic and economic engagement with the US-Japan-Australia-Vietnam-Singapore-South Korea could play a significant role while simultaneously doing everything to limit the expanding influence of PRC among all our neighbours. The latter is very difficult as PRC has deep pockets and our neighbourhood would do very well with some money. Joint R&D as we did in Brahmos, FGFA, MTA, avionics, the 30-odd projects that DRDO & the US are engaged in and the similar proposed deal with the UK etc. are the right approach.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 07 Sep 2011 19:28

Think of arms aquisiton's a bribe or hafta to the providing state. During COld War top of the line stuff was obtained. Now its not possible. Its all tit for tat arms race. IOW US/PRC provides TSP with stuff and India is forced to acquire counter weapons. IOW its hafta.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 21 Oct 2011 22:15

From Ramayana to Kargil war

Indian Military Thought: Kurukshetra to KargilAuthor: Brig (retd) K Kuldip Singh
Publisher: Lancer
Price: Rs 795



The book records India’s military thought from ancient to modern times, writes Ajit K Singh

At a time when some of the neighbours are engaged in endangering the national security, a battle-hardened military is needed to secure the borders of the country. The book under review illustrates what is needed to be done under these circumstances. The writer has done a great service by documenting the country’s military thought in different eras. This will provide a fair idea about our mistakes in the past and thus will help us evolve a smart military policy.

Divided into six sections and 23 chapters, the book is a synthesis of the past and the present. Describing the importance of espionage during a war, the author traverses through the Ramayana period. While dealing with the Mahabharata era, he highlights how it is important to exhaust the enemy. It has also been pointed out that the key to victory is being offensive rather than defensive.

While talking about the country’s military history, it’s difficult to ignore Kautilya, who has been quoted in detail. “He who possessed a strong army and who has offered remedies against all threats, may undertake an open fight; if he has secured position favorable to himself; otherwise a treacherous fight is better to defeat the enemy,” Kautilya said. On the methods of attack, the master strategician recommended, “Misled a favourably entrenched enemy by a false impression of your defeat, to lure the overconfident enemy into an unfavourable position before you attack with force; or, having harassed the enemy at night to deprive them of sleep, induce the weary enemy into attacking during the day when parched by the heat, and your troops are under the shade.”

After covering the the medieval age and the colonial era, the book reaches the post-Independence period. Specifically talking about the 1962 Sino-Indian war, it points out that the battle was lost more in the mind than on the ground. The argument put forward is that China had used the same tactics in its war against Koreans and, therefore, there was no element of surprise for the Indian troops. Moreover, it has been observed that the debacle could have been avoided had the Indians not ignored the golden maxim from the Arthashastra: “When strong, opt for war, when weak, seek peace.”

While dealing with the 1965 India-Pakistan war, the book looks into the issue of forfeiting war gains. It suggests that a policy for post-war negotiations has to be formalised well in advance, so that military gains are not squandered away on the negotiation table. Regrettably, the same mistake was committed in 1971. Covering the 1999 Kargil war, it highlights the intelligence failure.

While emphasising on a trim and modernised combat force, the book says that the only way to defeat terrorists is to strike them before they could strike you. “Strike them at their sources and wean them away their local support through an effective anti-terrorism law and interaction with the public,” it says.

Overall, it’s a well-researched book that is a must-read for both commoners and policymakers.

-- The reviewer is Research Fellow, Institute for Conflict Management, New Delhi


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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 07 Jan 2012 06:14

First KS Memorial lecture is being held on Jan 19th in IIHC New Delhi. NSA to speak. Contact the IIHC to attend.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 10 Jan 2012 03:27

Any updates to the Naresh Chandra commission report on Strategic Outlook for 2010?

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 10 Jan 2012 03:36

^^^^

Found this from HT on Dec 27th 2011

Report listing mandate of Intel agencies out next month

Strategic Review Committee's report out next month
With the Strategic Review Committee headed by Naresh Chandra expected to submit its report next month, the government is expecting the former cabinet secretary to recommend specific charters for Indian intelligence in order to avoid task overlap and one-upmanship among agencies.


Government sources said the 14 member committee was currently in the process of compiling the report with all the six sub-groups ready with their recommendations on border management, internal security, defence management and intelligence reform. The committee, set-up in June 2011, will submit its report in January 2012.

While the Committee will push for national security reforms, the government is hoping that Naresh Chandra will define mandates for intelligence agencies particularly the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) and the tri-service Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA). Apart from presence of disgruntled elements within, the R&AW is often at odds with Indian diplomats and growing number of Intelligence Bureau posts abroad. Top officials feel that rather than focus on core intelligence collection outside the country, R&AW agents often play diplomats and tinker with country specific foreign policy.

The DIA, on its part, is a matter of serious concern to the national security managers as the post of Director General DIA has become a sinecure for Lieutenant Generals awaiting their next postings. The average tenure of a DG DIA is around one to one-and-a-half years with only defence attaches coming under its ambit. As the individual services intelligence do not share data with DIA, the organisation has become bit of an orphan.

With former R&AW chief KC Verma and former Intelligence Bureau chief PC Halder on the Naresh Chandra committee, the government is hoping to spruce up its intelligence gathering apparatus to meet the demand of ever growing consumers.


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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 10 Jan 2012 03:40


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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 20 Jan 2012 02:06

ramana wrote:First KS Memorial lecture is being held on Jan 19th in IIHC New Delhi. NSA to speak. Contact the IIHC to attend.



NSA praise late KS

National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon has called for the broadening of debates on Indian national security, saying independent institutions outside the government had significant contributions to make to decision-making.

Mr. Menon made this remarks in a lecture delivered on Thursday to honour K Subrahmanyam, the eminent strategic thinker and administrator, who passed away in February last year.

4 key contributions

The NSA said Subrahmanyam had made four key contributions to Indian strategic thinking: building a consensus that nuclear weapons were the cheapest and most effective way of guaranteeing national survival in an uncertain world; creating an understanding that defence could not be sidelined in the pursuit of development; developing a modern national security structure; and emphasising the need for India to seek autonomy in its strategic decision-making.

For Subrahmanyam, Mr. Menon said, India's core constitutional values — secularism, democracy and the pursuit of the peoples' welfare — constituted a road map that provided overall shape to decision-making.

India's national security debates, Mr. Menon argued, drawing on the work of the scholar Kanti Bajpai, involve three kinds of voices: Nehruvians, who emphasise value-based relationships between states; neo-liberals, who see the pursuit of economic opportunity as a strategic priority; and hyper-realists, who have a more pessimistic view of the possibility for cooperation between states.

Subrahmanyam, the NSA said, approached these conflicting concerns with an open mind, proving willing to change his positions when confronted with new evidence.

Born in 1929, Subrahmanyam had served, among other capacities, as chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee and head of the prestigious Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses.



Lets wait for full text of remarks. I was hoping that NSA would speak on strategy etc rather than about KS Garu.


That would be better memorial to him for it shows he has taught the process.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 20 Jan 2012 03:09

Wow someone already uploaded the video of above talk

Part I



Part II


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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 20 Jan 2012 10:24

KS talk on "India's Grand Strategy" delivered in 2010 to IFS probationers

http://idsa.in/KSubrahmanyam

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 21 Jan 2012 07:58

shyamd wrote:Strategic Review Committee's report out next month
HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times
New Delhi, December 27, 2011
First Published: 11:49 IST(27/12/2011)
Last Updated: 13:55 IST(27/12/2011)

With the Strategic Review Committee headed by Naresh Chandra expected to submit its report next month, the government is expecting the former cabinet secretary to recommend specific charters for Indian intelligence in order to avoid task overlap and one-upmanship among agencies.

Government sources said the 14 member committee was currently in the process of compiling the report with all the six sub-groups ready with their recommendations on border management, internal security, defence management and intelligence reform. The committee, set-up in June 2011, will submit its report in January 2012.

While the Committee will push for national security reforms, the government is hoping that Naresh Chandra will define mandates for intelligence agencies particularly the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) and the tri-service Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA). Apart from presence of disgruntled elements within, the R&AW is often at odds with Indian diplomats and growing number of Intelligence Bureau posts abroad. Top officials feel that rather than focus on core intelligence collection outside the country, R&AW agents often play diplomats and tinker with country specific foreign policy.

The DIA, on its part, is a matter of serious concern to the national security managers as the post of Director General DIA has become a sinecure for Lieutenant Generals awaiting their next postings. The average tenure of a DG DIA is around one to one-and-a-half years with only defence attaches coming under its ambit. As the individual services intelligence do not share data with DIA, the organisation has become bit of an orphan.

With former R&AW chief KC Verma and former Intelligence Bureau chief PC Halder on the Naresh Chandra committee, the government is hoping to spruce up its intelligence gathering apparatus to meet the demand of ever growing consumers.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 21 Jan 2012 07:58

sanjchopra wrote:
'Pak will be India’s security test’

NEW DELHI: Challenges rising from Pakistan would remain the most serious security test for India over the next decade, says Naresh Chandra, chairman of the National Security Advisory Board, who is also heading a taskforce on reviewing the country's security architecture.

Delivering the 6th R N Kao Memorial Lecture, organized by the Research and Analysis Wing, Chandra said, "dealing with the security challenges from Pakistan" will be the "most serious challenge that our armed forces, intelligence and security agencies and the people as a whole have to face in the next decade or more."

"There is a perception that our human intelligence capacity in our western neighbourhood has declined in recent years. I am sure this area is being given special attention in order to ensure that timely and accurate information is available not only to agencies responsible for counter-terrorism, but also to decision-makers for taking more informed decisions and timely action," Chandra said.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 21 Jan 2012 21:48

Full text of SSM speech at First KS memorial lecture on Jan 19, 2012...


K. Subrahmanyam and India’s Strategic Culture

Subbu Forum Memorial Lecture

19 January 2012

Shivshankar Menon

NSA


Dr. Sanjay Baru,

Mrs Subrahmanyam, (whose birthday it is today),

Air Marshal Kapil Kak

Cmdre. Uday Bhaskar,

Ladies, Gentlemen and Friends

I thank the Subbu Forum and the IIC for doing me the honour of asking me to deliver the first memorial lecture in memory of the late K. Subrahmanyam, (KS), a towering figure, a teacher to many of us, and someone who was central to debates on India’s national security for over half a century.

This lecture is also a responsibility because of the very high standards of intellectual rigour and analysis that KS set in his lectures and writings. Many of you present here knew KS well. His intellectual sharpness was awe inspiring until you understood that it was an expression of his dedication to his craft and to the power of reason, and hid a sensitive appreciation of others beneath that forbidding exterior. Today every think tank in India which concerns itself with strategic affairs has people who worked with KS and whom he mentored. He combined those qualities of mind with personal courage, which became evident when he was on an Indian Airlines aircraft which was hijacked.

But I am not here to recount KS’ life or his intellectual struggles with orthodoxy and political correctness in matters of national security.

Instead I would like to consider what K Subrahmanyam stood for in his professional life and the areas where he enriched our strategic culture. Let us first look at Indian strategic culture itself. Thereafter we might look at how KS changed the way that we in India look at some major security issues. And finally I will speculate on what would concern KS if he were looking at the world today.

1. India’s Strategic Culture

We often hear statements alleging that India lacks a strategic culture. Sadly this is more often heard from Indians than foreigners. One sometimes wonders whether the idea that India lacks a strategic culture was not useful in the past to those who did not wish to see India’s weight translate into the effective exercise of power on the international stage. While one can understand foreigners spreading this idea, it is incomprehensible to me that some Indians should also believe this and still propagate this idea.

The most cogent expression of this idea was by George Tanham, a senior defence analyst at Rand Corporation in the early nineties Frankly speaking, for a civilisation and state like India not to have a strategic culture is impossible. It is like someone claiming to be apolitical, which itself is a political choice. Many others see in India a strategic culture that is “more distinct and coherent than that of most contemporary nation states”, according to Rodney W. Jones.

What is strategic culture and how can foreigners and Indians draw such diametrically opposite conclusions about India’s strategic culture? As I have said before, the most comprehensive (but incomprehensible) definition I have seen is that: strategic culture is that set of shared beliefs, assumptions and modes of behaviour, derived from common experience and accepted narratives (both oral and written) that shape collective identity and relationships to other groups, and which determine appropriate ends and means for achieving security objectives. Or, to put it more intelligibly without the academic jargon, strategic culture is an identifiable set of basic assumptions about the nature of international and military issues. This would involve both a central strategic paradigm (about the role of war in human affairs, the efficacy of force, the nature of the adversary, and so on), and a grand strategy or secondary assumptions about operational policy that flow from the assumptions.

By this definition of course we in India have a strategic culture. It is an indigenous construct over millennia, modified considerably by our experience in the last two centuries. For instance, war and peace are continuing themes in Indian strategic culture. While not celebrating war the culture treats it as acceptable when good fights evil. Indian strategic culture has been comfortable with this contradiction. Both major Indian epics deal with wars, and treat rivalries as natural and normal. Kautilya addressed the use of force in detail. While Gandhiji shunned the use of force and opposed violence in politics he was politically steely and unyielding, and accepted appropriate violence as unavoidable in certain circumstances. {Here the NSA doesnt see that Gandhiji's picking non-violent means as a strategy in itself. Non-violence, in itself is a weapon to suit the situation of the British overwhelming strength and to prevent a blood bath in which the worst suffers would be Indians due to the disproportionate strength of the British Crown and Indians. Further L.P. Sen was blessed by MKG before he went to Kashmir in 1947.}As a result of this acceptance of contradictions, Indian strategic culture supports ethical views that dovetail easily with international norms of conduct whether legal or on human rights, so long as they respect India’s status. The traditional culture also has a strong pedagogical bias which is reflected in the way India chooses to negotiate, and in the attendant risk that any external compromise is seen domestically as surrender.{Not necessarily. Negotiations that help India are not seen as surrenders. The PTBT that limited nuke tests to underground and non-weaponization of space and Chemical Weapons ban are all supported.}

One of the best descriptions of India’s contemporary strategic culture is by Kanti Bajpai who pointed out differences between ‘Nehruvians’, neo-liberals and hyper-realists, stressed what is common to all three streams of Indian strategic thought, and described how they might differ on the best means but not on India’s external goals. To summarise Bajpai, all three streams agree on the centrality of the sovereign state in international relations and recognise no higher authority; see interests, power and violence as the staples of international relations that states cannot ignore; and think that power comprises both military and economic capabilities at a minimum. Beyond this they differ on the best strategy and means to be adopted.

For ‘Nehruvians’ the natural state of anarchy can be mitigated by understandings between states, and to make preparations for war and a balance of power central to security and foreign policy is both ruinous and futile. For neoliberals mutual gain is a conditioning factor for the natural state of anarchy between states, particularly as they become interdependent. They therefore see economic power as a vital goal for states, to be achieved by free markets at home and free trade abroad. {MMS vadis!}The hyperrealists are however pessimistic and do not believe in transformation, only endless cycles of inter-state threat, counter-threat, rivalry and conflict, where the risk of war is only managed by the threat and use of violence. For them the surest way to peace and stability is the accumulation of military power and the willingness to use force.{BK vadis!}

For Bajpai, relations with the USA provide an example of how this works in practice. All three streams recognise the USA as the only superpower and of real significance to India, and agree that it is no military threat to India but that it is a diplomatic threat at times with US policies affecting India collaterally, particularly in the region. Nehruvians see the USA as an imperial power that must be contained and cannot countenance any rivals, and they therefore seek multilateral answers to the preponderance of US power. On the other hand neoliberals take the opposite view, stressing how essential the USA is for India’s own development, and believing that the US can be supportive of India’s views and aspirations. Hyperrealists differ from both, arguing that the only way to build India into a military power of the first rank is to work with all those who might help, like the USA, but to realise the limits of that cooperation and its limited utility for India’s security.

The elements of Indian strategic culture are evident in what is common to all three streams, Nehruvians, neoliberals and hyperrealists. The same elements are also evident in earlier Indian writings on statecraft, whether in Kautilya, the Mahabharata’s Bhishmaparva, or even in Ashoka’s edicts. All regard the international system as anarchic, and see international relations as fundamentally power relations. In the practical application of that culture therefore, all three of today’s Indian schools believe that nuclear weapons are essential for India’s security in a world that shows no signs of moving to their abolition and elimination, and which is inhabited by threats to India’s security.

{ I beg to differ. The Nehruvians would like to get ready to build nukes but never ever build them. We saw the wasted decades of 1950s and even the 1962 Chinese aggression did not move them to do it. The farce of being left out of the NPT by not testing before 1968 are there still. The neo-liberals would like to put the nukes back into unassembled state to get illusory economic benefits not realizing that unless backed by military force the wealth of India was open for looting by the company traders who were astounded at their own modesty to quote Clive! KS garu was a critical thinker with breath of fresh air who always advocated strength with all round development and not only economic.}

It is this common strategic culture that we inherited, first clearly expressed and adapted for modern times by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, which explains the substantial agreement on values, on goals and even on means in our foreign policy, despite marked and rapid changes in the external environment in which we have operated. That is why the core traits of our foreign policies have persisted since independence, irrespective of the parties in power. Our goals have stayed constant even as the means available to us have increased and as the world around us has become more complex and more linked to our own development.

{Even if they were articulated by Nehruji, the common values and goals are really shared aspirations of the freedom movement. And hence there is consensus on these goals.The goals as I wrote a year earlier as a tribute to KS garu are: Get rid of the colonists, bring India into the modern world and prevent further fragmentation of India]
LINK to my tribute last year

For instance, our actions in 1971 should have been no surprise to anyone who had bothered to study our strategic culture. Both our major epics, the Mahabharata and the Ramayana, are about wars and treat them as natural and normal, not celebrating them but as necessary instruments of statecraft, justified when good fights evil. This says something about war and peace as themes in our strategic culture.

We are sometimes asked how the non-violent land of Gandhi could do what we did in 1971. As Gandhiji himself said in “The Gita and Satyagraha”, “I do believe that when there is only a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence. Thus when my eldest son asked what he should have done, had he been present when I was almost fatally assaulted in 1908, whether he should have run away and seen me killed or whether he should have used his physical force which he could have wanted to use, and defend me, I told him that it was his duty to defend me even by using violence…… I would rather have India resort to arms in order to defend her honour than that she should, in a cowardly manner, become or remain a helpless witness to her dishonour.”


{This is very correct and thanks to SSM garu for reminding all of us and dispelling the delusions.}

In saying so Gandhiji was expressing ideas and a political rationalism whose roots one can trace back to India’s ancient history, to Kautilya or Ashoka, whichever you prefer.

2. KS’ Contributions

It would be clear from this brief description of Indian strategic culture that KS stood squarely in a long tradition of thought and attitudes, but applied it creatively to the vastly changed circumstances of the second half of the twentieth century and the last decade. That his ideas faced resistance because they were new was natural. But so was their ultimate acceptance as orthodoxy, since they implicitly were a development of a long tradition of Indian strategic thought.

Let me try to list some of the more significant contributions that he made to Indian strategic thinking and culture. Five aspects in particular struck me as significant and relevant today.

· “Bomb-mama” and our Nuclear Doctrine:

When KS began speaking of the need for India to build a nuclear weapon as the most cost effective solution to our unique situation, his was a lonely voice in India. It took years of steady and unrelenting argument and persuasion, (and, quite frankly, the actions of the NWS’) for his ideas to be widely accepted. He persuaded us of the idea of nuclear weapons as political rather than war-fighting weapons. And when we did conduct nuclear weapon tests in 1998, it was natural that it was to KS as Chairperson of the NSAB that we turned to articulate the doctrine that governs the use and control of India’s nuclear weapons. (Pakistan, who tested soon thereafter, has yet to articulate its doctrine, which says something about the different strategic cultures at play in the sub-continent.)

It is easy to underestimate the significance of what KS did to teach us how to think about nuclear weapons in a democracy. The ideas that Indian nuclear weapons would only be used in retaliation, that they would remain firmly under civilian control, that deterrence required massive retaliation and therefore assured survivability creating a second strike capability, were all first articulated by KS. Today we take them for granted.

He also maintained the link with our traditional emphasis on disarmament, making it clear that it was because our security was threatened and the other NWS’ had not responded to our calls for general and complete nuclear disarmament that we were compelled to weaponise, and that we remained willing to disarm under legally binding commitments and timeframes accepted by all the NWS’ along with matching commitments from the NNWS’.

We also owe to KS the very vocabulary that we now use in discussing India’s nuclear weapons programme. When KS began writing in public on the subject, the vocabulary of nuclear weapons policy was that created and developed in the context of the nuclear arms race between the US and the Soviet Union. Its relevance to the Indian, or for that matter the Chinese, situation has always been limited. (In 2006 Chinese and US arms control experts realised after decades of talks that they needed a mutually agreed bilingual glossary to minimise misunderstanding. It took eighteen months to reach agreement on 1,000 terms relating to nuclear security. But there was still no consensus on key concepts like “limited deterrence” and “minimal deterrence” or “deterrence” itself!!) In our case, we are still in the process of developing our own vocabulary and concepts, building on the work of the pioneers.

· Defence and Development:

When KS first began to write on defence issues in the sixties, the conventional wisdom was that every rupee spent on defence was a rupee snatched from development or feeding our people. The ‘guns vs. butter’ argument was natural in a country where government and individuals were poor and hunger was rampant. KS was one of the few after Sardar Patel to argue that economic development needed a sound defence as a prerequisite. He also went on to argue that the economic spin-offs from defence spending were not inconsiderable in terms of growth and technological independence. He had a vision which was rare for that time of what defence as a sector could mean to the national economy, driving technological modernisation and growth by providing non-inflationary consumption. That we have not yet realised that vision in practice, despite exponential growth in resources available for defence, is not because his ideas were faulty but because they were never implemented. This debate on defence and development is one that still continues and is unsettled to this day.

· National Security Structures – The Kargil Review Committee and the GOM:

If India was the first parliamentary democracy to attempt to harness the advantages of a National Security Council system, and has constructed structures for this purpose in the last ten years, many of the initial conceptions and ideas can be traced back to KS’ writings and those of his generation. A lifetime worth of thought was compressed into the Kargil Review Committee’s report and many of those recommendations were later adopted by the GOM.

· Strategic Autonomy in thought and deed:

The one thread that ran through all of KS’ writings was the need to increase India’s real strategic autonomy. By this he never meant cutting ourselves off from the world. He realised that this would doom us to eternal technological mediocrity and leave us vulnerable to even minor threats. Instead he envisaged India working with other countries as equal partners, as an active participant in the shaping of international outcomes and, ultimately, the international system itself. For him non-alignment was a strategy, not an ideology. As a flexible realist he responded to changes in the international situation facing India: In the sixties he advocated India reaching out to the US; post-1971 he was a strong advocate of the Indo-Soviet relationship; after 1991, and particularly after 2005, he was impatient with our tardiness in grasping the strategic opportunities that he thought had opened up for India.

This was not mere opportunism. He was a strong nationalist, rejecting US conditionalities for military assistance after 1962; driving hard bargains with the USSR as Secretary Defence Production in 1979; and, resisting policy choices that would have constrained our nuclear options in the seventies.

· Values in National Security Strategy; Realism-plus:

What made KS’ realism different from the common or garden variety of Western realism was his ability to combine a strong commitment to the basic values of the Indian Republic, (of secularism, democracy and pluralism), with his realist pursuit of national interest. I suppose one could call this the “realist-plus” approach. He was an advocate of value based relationships: with the US and others on democracy, with Russia on secularism, and with Europe on liberalism. He often argued that there was no real contradiction between the promotion of democracy and the pursuit of India’s interests in our neighbourhood. I remember heated discussions in the JIC when KS was chair in 1977-78. The example used by both sides of the argument was Pakistan, where democratic governments had been well-meaning but ineffective while military regimes had promised delivery but presided over a basically unsatisfactory relationship with India. It is an argument that still resonates in India today. But there was no question where KS stood on this defining issue.

KS argued that the values in the Indian Constitution – secularism, pluralism, democracy and quasi-federalism -- were imperative to hold India together in the 20th century. India is alone, along with the USA in an earlier age, in seeking to industrialise and accumulate power as a democracy. All the other major nations of the world industrialised and gathered power before they became democratic. KS felt that this was why the rise of India, like the 19th century rise of the USS, would not arouse the concerns, conflicts and reactions that the rise of other powers throughout history have provoked. For him it was and remains a matter of India’s self interest to help to build a democratic, pluralistic and secular world order.

{I would use the word "modern or non religion based" world instead of secular which has its own meaning in India. This is because after End of History, the West and others are sliding back into pre-Enlightenment religion based miasma.}

To my mind, perhaps the greatest contribution that KS made to intellectual discourse in India was to bring us back to the Indian realist tradition, one of the few realist traditions in the world that has a place of pride for values. KS’ writings and work re-taught us how to think strategically. He taught us that strategy is not just about outdoing an adversary who is trying to do the same to you. It is also about finding cooperative solutions and creating outcomes in non-zero-sum situations, (which are most of our lives), even when others are motivated by self-interest and not benevolence. Strategy is the art of creating outcomes that further your national interest and values, and includes putting yourself in others’ shoes so as to predict and influence what they do.

The measure of his success is the extent to which these ideas are now commonly accepted and no longer strike us as extreme. Not very long ago, in the living memory of my generation, this was not so.

3. KS’ Concerns Today

What would have concerned KS today?

Shortly before he died KS sent me four papers that he was working on. One was unfinished and the others were unpolished. The papers were nothing if not ambitious and magisterial, as one would expect from him. They were on an Indian Grand Strategy for the first half of the 21st Century, Indian Defence Policy, Nuclear Deterrent in the Indian Context, and India in the 21st Century. I do hope the KS Forum and the Subrahmanyam family will see their way to publishing these papers.

Reading these papers today, when uncertainty in the international system is at unprecedented levels and as we seem to be entering a new phase of the world economy, one is struck by how his “realist-plus” perspective seems best suited to describe what we see around us, and to chart a course forward. We are in a world where there are few certainties, where coalitions form around issues and alliances are permeable, where power is increasingly shared but unevenly among several major powers, and where conflicts are asymmetric. This is a world with which the Indian state system was familiar for most of our pre-modern history, a world where Krishna, Bhishma and Kautilya would all feel equally at home. So it seems logical that we should return to our strategic culture as made modern by thinkers like KS to seek answers to the questions we face.

{Hear! Hear!!! SSM has sounded the clarion call and kudos to him. Arun gave him Dragon speak software in 2010 to make it easy for him to write his op-eds. He was working on creating a repository of his views on subjects of interest.}

4. Conclusion

If India is to deal with the issues of the new twenty-first century world, it is essential that we further elaborate our own culture and tradition of strategic thought. So long as India’s situation and needs are unique, we must encourage our own ways of looking at developments, and develop our own strategic culture, vocabulary and doctrine. To do so would be appropriate tribute to KS. Fortunately for us, there is no isolationist streak in our strategic thought so far, and we have a rich tradition to draw on. Ironically, the greater our capabilities, the more we need the world and are integrated into it. So, if anything, the need for and the rewards of studying our strategic culture will grow with time.

Also there is a sudden realization in West that the Indian way is the right approach for the long haul.

Incidentally his speech at the IDSA linked above was on India's Grand Strategy....
Can some one make a speech to word file of that speech?

ramana
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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 21 Jan 2012 22:01

ShyamD Posted this in the Intel thread. For sake of continuity can we get hold of the earlier five lectures?

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RN KAO MEMORIAL LECTURE BY SHRI NARESH CHANDRA. A Good read

India’s Security Challenges in the next decade – Role of Intelligence

I feel greatly honoured and privileged to have been asked to deliver the R. N. Kao Memorial Lecture this year. I believe, it is the sixth in the series started in 2007 by Shri Tharakan, the then Secretary, R&AW . It feels good to be following the five distinguished speakers who have delivered the lecture in previous years.

Before this distinguished gathering, it is hardly necessary to enumerate the achievements of Shri Ramji Kao, one of the most celebrated civil servants of our time and the architect of our secret service. He was given charge of organizing the R&AW in September, 1968. Shri Kao had been associated with the creation of the Aviation Research Centre after 1962. He was able to set up and harness the capacities for both human and technical intelligence so successfully that within a period of less than three years, the Organisation was able to make a most valuable contribution to our triumph in the 1971 conflict.

He is recognized as a father figure and role model for all officers, young and old, in the R&AW and the Directorate General of Security. As a person Shri Kao had an elegant and striking presence. He was measured and precise with his words yet had a keen sense of humour, an amazing human touch and a love for arts.

A significant feature of Shri Kao’s vision for the R&AW was to lay strong emphasis on the quality of manpower and the multi-disciplinary sources from which select personnel should be drawn. He realized that the most important element of the whole exercise was the expertise and the quality of personnel that R&AW could select and motivate for the complex tasks entrusted to the Organisation. He was also the first to recognize the need for having a specialized service like the RAS to develop a body of professionals with core competencies needed by the agency.

I am happy to recall that my first contact with Shri Kao was when he called me on phone in late 1968 to assist in securing release of an IPS officer from UP. All I could do as Deputy Secretary in the Home Ministry was to get the information and inform him that the file was stuck in the office of Chief Secretary. Later, Shri Kao was successful in his attempt to get the services of that officer, who later came to head the R&AW. My last meeting with Kao Saheb was in March, 2001, when I returned to New Delhi from Washington DC. He was gracious enough to invite me to tea at his residence and was generous in his remarks about the improvement of relations with the USA. His analyses of India-US relations and knowledge of the current situation was impressive and as keen as ever. I would always cherish his genial friendly manner and the way he could put junior officers at ease.

Presently engaged in review of National Security systems and issues, in a Task Force, which will make recommendations to Government of India soon, I cannot be very free, therefore, with loud thinking and tentative conclusions at this time. Nevertheless, I will venture to highlight some aspects of the issues involved that might be of interest to the knowledgeable gathering present here. These do not reflect the views being finalized in the Task Force.

To take up the security challenges we might face in the next decade and beyond, it might be appropriate to dwell on what our National Security Doctrine ought to be.

A country’s national security is conceived in terms of its capacity to defend and advance its stated interests and principles. This requires adequacy of infrastructure and the availability of specialized personnel to meet these challenges effectively. National security has come to acquire a much wider connotation comprising not only the traditional aspects of defence and maintenance of public order but also issues of nation’s economic strength, its technological capability along with food and energy security and the quality and well-being of its human resource. It is in this wider context that one has to identify and analyse challenges at present and those emerging in the future and consider the role that intelligence agencies have to perform. Proper intelligence input is essential to taking informed decisions on issues of national security. Intelligence agencies are important arms of the State for meeting external challenges and for the proper management of internal security.

In brief, our national security objectives are: (i) preservation of territorial and maritime integrity of the country; (ii) having friendly relations with all countries; (iii) providing for sustained economic and social development accessible to all; (iv) creating credible capacities to meet conventional and non-conventional threats and challenges emerging from space and cyber space; and (v) nurturing the values of secularism and democracy. These objectives set the agenda for our policies and programmes and bring out the challenges that we face in the future for the successful prosecution of these objectives.

To consider the security environment in which we have to fashion our policies, we find that the global strategic context is changing rapidly, driven by the speed of technology development, realignment of forces with the recent decline in the markets of the West along with emerging economic strength and rise of China and India. Many see in this a strategic shift from the West to the East, but one has to be realistic and not assume that this shift is going to indefinitely endure. Even today, the aggregate size of the economies of the US, Europe and Japan, covering about a tenth of the world’s population have an aggregate GDP which is eight times the size of the combined GDP of China and India, which together account for one-third of human-kind. This imbalance will reduce but gradually as the years roll by and so it needs to be factored in our policies aimed at managing the rebalancing of strategic power internationally.

These developments require careful management of the current global redistribution of power and taking steps to engineer a suitable political equilibrium within a rising Asia. In the economic sphere the main challenge would be in the shape of achieving rapid economic growth, a larger share of international trade and business along with substantial growth in employment opportunities. While every effort would be necessary to expand bilateral trade relations on fair terms of trade, the challenge would be in acquiring the necessary mineral resources for both energy, fertilizer and other industrial inputs in friendly countries. Sustained and broad-based economic development and all inclusive growth are central to strengthening national security. Programmes aimed at employment-generation, along with inclusive economic development remain a challenge. Promoting vast sections of our people out of poverty into gainful occupations has to be recognized as a security imperative.

The main constraint to achieving rapid economic growth is going to be inadequacy of infrastructure, particularly the capacity to meet energy requirements in various sectors of our economy. The problem is likely to get more complex with the threat of climate change that calls for effective national and global intervention. All nations recognize the importance of taking urgent and drastic measures to reduce dependence on fossil fuels that add to greenhouse emissions but their approaches are heavily conditioned by national self-interest. In this area, India will have to be alert to the need for promoting a more equitable sharing of the global commons to secure its right to reasonable share of the ecological and economic space.

Our strategic concern has to seek an external environment in the region and beyond that is conducive to peaceful development and the protection of our value systems. While our policies are centred on the fact that we do not harbour any aggressive designs nor seek to threaten anyone, we have to take all necessary measures to safeguard the country and the interests of the people. We must also keep pace with technological advancement and provide for adequate infrastructure and the human resources required for growth in agriculture and industry and specialized services in the new emerging fields of military technology, cyber security, techint, forensics, etc.

To describe the security challenges nearer home, I would like to mention the rise of China as the first issue. In my view, we should not consider this only in the narrow context of a security threat or challenge, but also take note of the opportunities that emerge from the rapid growth of China’s economy. One need not under-estimate the apprehension generated by the thrust of China’s actions in countries of our neighbourhood, particularly in Pakistan and the coastal areas of our immediate neighbours. We are also yet to deal with and resolve the border disputes persisting in the Northeast as well as the Northwest. The continued military and technological assistance extended to Pakistan by China directly or through North Korea in the sphere of nuclear weapons technology and missile systems has been a dangerous development.

The growth in various sectors in China, especially in defence production capability require concentration of efforts to improve our defence preparedness, much larger capacity for defence production and upgradation of our armed forces. It is a national security requirement that the gap in the size of the economy between China and India does not widen to a level that further increases our concerns for a balanced relationship between the two major powers in Asia. This also highlights the need of improving the capability of our agencies in the area of economic and commercial intelligence.

Our relations with China have elements of cooperation and competition at the same time. While both of us are pre-occupied with internal transformation, we will need much better communication and dialogue to avoid misunderstanding each other’s actions and motives without letting the guard down on the serious security aspects. This is another area in which the role of intelligence agencies is of crucial importance.

While these challenges have to be taken very seriously, the importance of dialogue and building up of trade and investment relations with China have to be accorded priority. China is already our largest trading partner, but the terms of trade need urgent reform. It is also necessary to promote greater understanding of each other by promoting exchanges between the two countries involving not only diplomats and military personnel but also trade delegations and people from various walks of life.

This also highlights the importance of having language experts covering not only the Chinese language but the languages spoken in countries of our extended neighbourhood. There is paucity of language experts today and the capacity to train more people is very limited. Besides ensuring a number of language experts for translation and simultaneous interpretation, it would be necessary to train our own officers in the government and the agencies to acquire proficiency in various foreign languages of importance.


In the case of Pakistan, the situation is likely to remain as difficult and complex as before. Recent trends are even more discouraging. It has now become customary to describe Pakistan in very negative terms, such as a failing state, epicenter of terrorist activities, untrustworthy ally, etc. A noted academic and terrorism analyst has called Pakistan “perhaps the biggest and wobbliest domino on the world stage”.

The fact that the Pakistan military has a number of nuclear devices and associated delivery systems including missiles is a serious cause of concern, not only to India but to all powers committed to non-proliferation. Cooperation with agencies to ensure the provision of necessary safeguards has become international security imperative because of the fear that such weapons, or fissionable material might fall in the hands of non-state actors.

Dealing with the security challenge from Pakistan is a subject by itself and cannot be covered adequately in this address. Suffice it to say that this is the most serious challenge that our armed forces, intelligence and security agencies and the people as a whole have to face in the next decade or more. This is one area in which the armed forces and all the agencies including the NTRO, NATGRID and the recently announced NCTC will need to function in close coordination. Systems will have to be kept under constant review to ensure free and unrestricted flow of information through the entire security network covering many departments. This is essential to ensure that actionable intelligence inputs reach stations where counter measures have to be taken in time.

There is a perception that our humint capacity in our western neighbourhood has declined in recent years. I am sure this area is being given special attention in order to ensure that timely and accurate information is available not only to agencies responsible for counter-terrorism, but also to decision-makers for taking more informed decisions and timely action. While creating the capacities to anticipate and deal with unwelcome developments, infiltration and worse from across the border, we must not lose the long-term objective of having fruitful and friendly relations with people of Pakistan who are our closest neighbour in terms of history, culture and language. While exercising the utmost vigilance and remaining alert, we need to seize every opportunity of communicating with counterpart segments of Pakistani society in the hope of convincing our neighbour that we as a people wish them no harm and would like to partner with them in the overall development of the sub-continent.

Other countries of the region which have to be on our radar screen are Afghanistan, Myanmar, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. While these are all passing through a period of transition, our relations with them would further improve with the resolution of many problems dogging their internal situation.

In the case of Afghanistan, our policy of providing development assistance and support for infrastructure development, training of Afghani personnel and maintenance of certain basic services in that unhappy land must continue according to the wishes of the Government of Afghanistan. For stability in this region a strong government in Kabul is in everybody’s interest.

The situation today is fluid. Deterioration in US-Pakistan relations has created problems for provisioning the US-led NATO forces in Afghanistan. Further reductions planned this year in US force levels would create space for other interested powers, particularly Pakistan to take undue advantage of the situation. Development in Afghanistan and the ground situation needs to be specially monitored to enable making the right choices.

With Nepal, we have the closest and most comprehensive relationship. The fact that we have a largely open border between India and Nepal adds a major security dimension to our relationship. Continued engagement with Nepal with adequate assistance to their development programme is to the mutual benefit of both the countries. Nepal has been fairly cognizant of our security concerns, particularly in ensuring that their territory is not used by any neighbouring country or non-state actors for launching terrorist and other unfriendly acts against India. However, activities of some foreign agencies in Nepal will continue to be of serious concern.

In the case of Sri Lanka, our economic and political support to them should help in securing a more fair and durable political settlement between the major communities of that island. Problems and grievances of the Tamil community, if not adequately addressed by Colombo, have the potential of spilling over to the southern tip of India, creating a complication in India-Sri Lanka relations.

Our sincere efforts to improve the relations with Bangladesh have started to bear fruit, but much still needs to be done to take full advantage of the great potential that exists for cooperation and exploitation of water and mineral resources in a spirit of cooperation and friendship. There is great potential for economic cooperation between India and Bangladesh, including projects which improve connectivity and better road transport between Bangladesh and the territory of India bordering Bangladesh. Mutually beneficial projects have not been able to take off because of domestic political considerations. The situation can improve with sincere diplomatic efforts taking into account the political sensitivities involved on the Bangladeshi side. Lately, Bangladesh government has been quite responsive to our security concerns with regard to insurgent groups making unauthorized use of places in that country in order to regroup, train and make unwelcome inroads into Indian territory.

In the Indian Ocean and the countries of the littoral, India has unique and special responsibilities for ensuring safety of passage of vessels carrying precious cargo, particularly oil, fertilizer and minerals. Besides providing requisite capacity to Indian Navy, cooperative arrangements would need to be worked out with concerned Navies. Effective arrangements for sharing intelligence and commercial information would need to be worked out by our agencies.

Among the security challenges requiring urgent attention, terrorism is the most pressing real and eminent threat; especially from externally sponsored and state-assisted cross-border terrorism. Home-grown terrorism, both complements and adds to the burden. Left-wing extremism is the most serious threat to our internal security.

Note has to be taken of the nexus that exists between terrorist outfits, criminal gangs involved with drug trafficking, gun-running, pushing of fake currency and irregular movement of persons across national borders. This creates a very nefarious network of crime and threat to security that requires a very comprehensive and refined approach. For instance, relevant data and information on the activities of all these elements will need to be compiled, analysed and assessed as a base for supporting preparation of counter-measures by the concerned agencies. Needless to say this requires coordinated efforts by the intelligence agencies, para-military forces and state police. To the extent possible, cooperative assistance will have to be sought from agencies in neighbouring countries.

Within the country, there are serious gaps in our capacity to manage internal security issues effectively. This is a very wide subject but mention needs to be made about the crying need for reforming and modernizing the police force at the level of police stations and districts. There is similar need for augmenting resources for the lower judiciary and the government prosecution branch at the district level. Delays in securing assistance from the police or availing judicial remedy in a fair manner is a major cause of frustration, resentment and disaffection among the people at large. Substantial improvement in these areas is a national security imperative.

Although there is less likelihood of any conventional or full-scale conflict breaking out in the near future, the possibility of limited conflict or skirmishes in sensitive locations on the border or LOC cannot be ruled out. These perceptions require the necessary level of readiness in our capability to respond adequately. Our Defence Services cannot lower their guard in discharge of their paramount responsibility in this respect. Defensive and fighting capabilities of the Services will have to be continually upgraded along with establishing adequate infrastructure. Defence expenditure and programmes for upgradation of military technology, equipment, etc., has to be in reasonable proportion to the capabilities being developed in our neighbourhood. In this area, intelligence agencies have to play an important role in gathering and assessing relevant information to enable more informed decisions being taken by government. Shri Kao had realized the importance of R&AW working with other agencies to optimize the quality of intelligence and analysis generated by different agencies. Cooperative arrangements organised by him were in evidence during the 1971 conflict and thereafter.

The role of intelligence agencies has transformed tremendously and their functions have become manifold. In response to the changing security scenario from days of mere surveillance and information gathering through spies, double agents and police informers, the scene has changed completely with the introduction of new technologies, electronic gadgets and cameras and methods which are not only available to State agencies but also to well-funded terrorist and militant organizations and insurgents. The problem has acquired a new dimension with the ability of these irregular outfits to hire or recruit as their members from among highly qualified personnel. In this context, it is evident that the importance of what the Indian intelligence agencies are required to do cannot be over-emphasized.

Besides the traditional work involving gathering of information, making assessment and producing actionable reports for those in-charge of taking remedial measures, the agencies have now to manage new areas in a fast-changing scenario. For instance, highly specialized and trained personnel are needed to read and decode signals, interpret long distance photo-imageries, do forensic analysis of all explosives and other materials, undertake analytics, do horizon-spotting for anticipating emerging problems and connecting the dots coming out of diverse sources of data collection. The principal challenge in meeting these requirements would be to hire specialized personnel in requisite numbers and train them to the professional level required in the organization. A comprehensive programme of manpower planning and personnel development is going to be the single-most important issue to be tackled. The scene today is not encouraging. There are huge shortages in the agencies, specially in certain critical areas of their work. The rules and procedures for creating posts, recruiting people and the institutional capacity to train them is not adequate to meet this requirement in a timely manner. Finding innovative solutions, more pragmatic and liberalized procedures will need to be adopted to overcome this problem. This whole area is currently being reviewed by the Task Force to examine issues connected with National Security.

It is not necessary to provide for all specialization and skilled manpower within the agencies and government departments. There are experts and analysts available outside the government in the universities, think-tanks, the scientific community, specialists in business and commerce and journalism. I think the time has come for those in the government to reach out more and more to these national assets which are outside the government fold. This can be done not only through cooperative arrangements with necessary safeguards, but also through interchange of specialist personnel between government agencies and non-government institutions. In times of conflict, many nations have adopted such an approach to great advantage. In the US, interchange between government think-tanks and other non-government institutions is very common. In India, we are yet to utilize the substantial potential that exists in this respect.

A revolution in communication and the tremendous expansion of the internet has created a new situation. The utility of monitoring telephonic conversation or intercepting messages on wireless is hardly sufficient any more. Besides the print media and TV, the social media has now a reach which runs into millions with extremely fast communication capable of creating a surge of public opinion and movement faster than any government agency can monitor, let alone control. We have seen highly centralized governments taken by surprise on movements springing on to the streets in unexpectedly large numbers united with a common intent. This is a new destabilizing phenomenon, but the impact of such events is fortunately less in democracies where the media is free and open.

Cyber security threats are very real and pose a serious danger to our security systems. It transcends geographical and domain boundaries and is not subject to control through physical security. The prevalent threats, besides threat and fraud include espionage, sabotage, psywar and propaganda. For adequate cyber security considerable expertise needs to be developed in the areas of cryptography, network security and information security. In fact, establishing and following a cyber security doctrine is the first step to building an effective defence system. Such a doctrine has to be developed for the entire cyber space covering each organization involved with providing or using internet services. Recent experience has shown that threats and actual attacks are becoming more and more unpredictable. This requires preventive measures and contingency plans to deal effectively with the crisis in quick time.

These new developments call for structures and methods enabling much faster response. The earlier divisions and distinctions in the sphere of security and intelligence are no longer valid. The line between internal and external threats has got blurred. Cross-border terrorism has links in our own country and several internal insurgencies and home-grown terrorism has external ramifications, like sanctuaries, training camps, etc., available in neighouring countries.

Earlier the premier intelligence agencies concentrated mainly on strategic intelligence, leaving technical intelligence mostly to security forces and police organizations. Now there is need for greater emphasis on collecting both strategic and technical intelligence. There is increasing requirement for timely and specific intelligence on which rapid response can be planned and executed.

There is also greater need for effective systems and mechanisms for sharing all worthwhile actionable intelligence without delay and for coordination in the follow-up action or response. This requires a holistic view of the entire network through which information flows to the departments and agencies of the Central and State Governments. In all spheres it has been found that important bits of information lie unnoticed and unattended while it would have made a crucial difference in the hands of the concerned authority. This aspect needs to be studied by the major departments and agencies to improve the system of collection, storage and retrieval of information across different turfs in a seamless manner. In the case of sensitive information, officials in the hierarchy can be accorded a level of clearance to enable use with the necessary safeguards.

India is steadily building capabilities to take care of its security concerns largely on its own, but some concerns have international dimensions. In this, diplomacy and strategic partnerships would play an important role, but intelligence cooperation with major powers and countries is also required, particularly in combating international terrorism. We have to always oppose any move to compartmentalize terrorism by considering foreign terrorists as your terrorists and some as ours, depending on their target country. However, we may have to make allowances for each other’s constraints, priorities and areas of divergence of interests.

Suggestions in this regard range from reforms across the board involving setting up of new structures, systems and procedures to the more moderate ones of refinement and modifications of the existing structures and systems, making provision for more radical changes in an evolutionary way. Diverse views need to be examined and studied carefully. The bottom line is that the measures suggested have to be effective and acceptable in the existing and emerging realities. There is the conventional view that systems and procedures evolve over decades along with periodical reviews and modifications from time to time. The other view is that the present structures and systems are not capable at all to deal with new challenges and threats and there should be a major overhaul.

The intelligence apparatus in India conforms to the generally accepted pattern prevalent in democratic countries. Most totalitarian governments and dictatorships follow an integrated system as is the case in communist countries, China, Russia, Pakistan, Myanmar, etc. In democracies like USA, UK, France, Japan, etc., the security service and the secret service have come to be separated. This occurred in India in September, 1968. Separation of normal police, the security service and the secret service provide necessary safeguards in protecting citizens’ rights and upholding due process of law. For instance, the intelligence establishment is not empowered to arrest and detain persons except through and with the help of civil police. The citizen is thus assured that the secret security apparatus cannot touch him directly, but only through normal police where legal and judicial remedies are available. Further, the secret service does not have a role within the country and operates in a manner which is consistent with the overall national security objectives and interests of the country.

The operations of the external agency have certain specialized features. Its officers and operatives often have to work in alien or even hostile environment. We have to see how these intelligence operatives should be best recruited and trained and how to take care of their future prospects. First, we need persons of strong nerves who can take care of themselves in unpredictable circumstances and who can work coolly under pressure, and also having the judgement to guard against various risks and retaining the benefit of deniability. They are expected to do whatever it takes to achieve their objective and yet discharge their duties without breaking the law of their own country, although the rules of engagement differ when they have to operate abroad in unfriendly and hostile territory. We have also to choose people from different backgrounds and walks of life with special skills and aptitudes. Therefore, all recruitment to the organization may not be best done through the normal selection procedures and bodies or into one or two organized services. We have to study procedures in other countries and adopt some features to suit the conditions in our own country. In bringing about any major changes in the system of recruitment the prospects of existing incumbents should not be overlooked.

In the training of recruits, more attention has to be paid to their minds and mental orientation and the overall approach and attitude towards service in the organization they are joining. Needless to say, much more attention has to be given to the practical side of training in addition to theory. At the same time, besides the need for area specialization and acquisition of some special skills, there will be obvious need for diversifying their cover and having different criteria for placement, promotions and remuneration.

In the interest of their work, intelligence agencies have to be provided much greater degree of flexibility and freedom in using public funds and resources. It is not possible to apply the same rules of transparency and audit that are imposed on other departments of the government. On the question of accountability, I find that the views I had expressed several years ago remain largely valid still. If public servants undertake activity with public funds, then a measure of transparency and accountability are questions which cannot be ignored. Being part of the Executive there is no fundamental immunity available to intelligence agencies from parliamentary scrutiny or judicial review. To an extent, this also goes for audit of expenditure incurred by the intelligence agencies. It would be clear to the meanest intelligence, however, that there is no way the intelligence agencies can be expected to function in the open for a substantial part of their operations. If public funds are to be utilized for the purposes described above as functions which intelligence agencies must necessarily perform in the national interest, then a balance has to be struck between two sets of conflicting considerations. It is no use imposing the standard framework of accountability in a manner which brings essential secret and security services to a halt, causing funds and energy to be expended to no effect. We must remember what we are dealing with and what the other side is throwing at us. So in a democracy run by rule of law who is ultimately responsible for striking a balance on this issue, and for making a right choice? In Parliamentary form of government this can be only done by the Prime Minister as chairman of the Cabinet Committee on Security with ultimate accountability to Parliament.

There is also the contradiction involved in the spirit that characterizes the RTI Act on the one hand and the Officials Secret Act on the other. The generally accepted principle in securing right balance is to weigh the pros and cons of putting information in the public domain, keeping in mind that the same would be also available to the interested diplomatic agents of foreign missions based in India. While intelligence agencies are exempted from application of the RTI Act, audit and accountability has to be ensured rather carefully to avoid damage to security interests.

At the same time, it is important for intelligence agencies to devote attention to their image, public relations as well as communication with the media. Closed-door meetings by officers with senior editors on non-attributable basis have helped in the past in managing public opinion in crisis situations. Failure to do so has on occasion resulted in embarrassment and avoidable burden upon those taking important strategic and tactical decisions. This is an area requiring greater interaction and special handling by trained professionals.

I thank Secretary (R&AW), former heads of agencies, members of the media and other distinguished colleagues for enabling me to share my views.

Thank you.

ramana
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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 22 Jan 2012 08:29

I wish somehow we can get the script of the TV serial Chanakya in word form either in Hindi or English.* The great thing about the serial is shows the evolution of Vishnugupta's thinking on strategy and how he synthesizes the teachings of earlier preceptors and adapts them to his times.

KS garu also did the samewise and we don't have a repository of his evolution in thinking on strategy. SSM is not right on some aspects. Above all else KS was a realist who put together disparate strands and wove them together into a fine tapestry of thought.

* I have the serial on DVD and watch it as often as I can. Reading the book is one thing and seeing it is another.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 26 Jan 2012 02:12

X-Post.....

satya wrote:Had a talk with not so hot billi in dilli ( billi don't like this cold weather ) wrt Sh. Naresh Chandra's lecture . It fits the piece in puzzle of India's National Intelligence Set Up's ongoing transformation taking place . What i remember from talk is :

1) Desh had & still has very few defense background intell officers in upper levels why don't ask we all know . Most of them come on deputation & were not allowed to put in groundwork to be followed up by their successors apart from the gravy train lure is still there specially among the air force's officers on deputation . Whatever limited role defense background officers have is in field of techint & covert ops ( karate sarate commando wammando thing in words of billi :( ) not in actual planning or related remotely to strategy . Sadly not much has changed in this regard . So we still miss out their PoV who for a change now very well understand strategy & its aspects .

2) Current RAW Top Black Hat RAS himself well regarded in the set up . Was instrumental in increasing the pay & perks for officers above certain rank . Did few other things gud ones as he has blessings from the very top so some sort of house cleaning taking place to be followed by trim the fat & build the muscle exercise to be followed by an increase in brain cells if we are lucky ok its too far but still this what the intention is .

3) Given most of our intell set up is based on police officers , set up's philosophy is to look at everything from a law & order thing so what ever humint & techint we have is almost entirely focussed on foot soldiers & their cell leader ( if lucky) . Had a big trouble to look at things from a strategic PoV ( an example wht happened in Kerala wrt to cow slaughter in temple permises would have seen some PMO or another ministry babu ringing up RAW & IB office to ask them what's happening & why was it not told so before in short no focus as current need is to get one more angle in talks over chai biscuit & to butter one's own position in eyes of Master, top priority in intel is what ever that hits the media so in morning one thing evening it will the something else & in between we all can imagine ) . This has led to considerable diversion of resources who even in best of times work 4 /10 times other 2-3 times plain lucky rest we get bomb blasts here & there. Myopia might be the right word & then there is need to talk else how can we digest our pandara road & khan market food no wonder Blackberry is a much cherished handset for such mantris & santris.

4) NSA is one of few people who tend to look at things strategic pov . PC was sent to TSP to meet TSPA Jernails what transpired was some sort of message delivered ( might be understanding might not be ) whereby another Mumbai scale incident to be considered a strategic attack & not a mere law & order terror related incident & will have some consequences what they are don't know but there was a frank discussion given more than 2 Generals were present from TSP side . Cold Start one of the vectors in place should another 26/11 or worse happen, there's talk of TSP jihadis ( uniformed & non uniformed to go for something bigger & they agree on something bigger to happen but to what purpose not clear yet so till then maybe there's time maybe there's not big uncertainty on this front ) . TSPA jernails said not in control of all Abduls fauji/jihadis maybe a lie not one sure .

5) If we remember there was news of SPS under PMO , it was primarily tasked initially to give specific tasks to our intel boys ie things to do clearly so now we have a set up ( SPS) that gets feedback ( for now to be used later on to develop our own strategic options ) to understand the strategic affairs that will affect India ( work in progress) . Its a slow process but nevertheless a start . One more thing what ever u hear about intel set up in media 10/10 times its false there might be one or 2 that may count up to something but what media paint is nowhere near the things are . Again had things been so bad Dilli would have the largest embassies of Unkil & Aunty overtly again words of Billi . For very first time there's growing recognition of babu log from South India specially Kerala held in very high esteem but what to do when some chu***a in party suggested to Yuvraaj to have babus from UP if he wanted to get a good performance in UP election & now we have a wonder called Home Secretary following in footsteps of Sh. Gowda sleeping in official meetings & yet we hear PC is bad what to say its all Kalyug getting jawan :mrgreen:

6) MMSjee & a few others ( club boys ) were frustrated in getting almost 0 strategic intel from our set up so tube light or bulb moment :idea: & was agreed that this needs to be changed resulting in committee under Sh. Naresh Chandra to find first the causes & remedies . SPS was made functional so as not to waste time .

7) As per what i understood all terror related incidents ( below Mumbai /parliament scale ) to be handled by local police-ATS -IB over the time RAW will become increasingly focus on strategic aspect once our Janabs ( old timers still luv this word more than Saab ) understand what makes up strategic aspect in intelligence . Debate did take place & wht they mentioned was strategic aspect meant vote bank politics so how much re education had to happen one can imagine but atleast there's growing realization things cannot go on like this where MI boys too were given terror related tasks as top priority . Anyhow normal sense coming back . PMO under new secretary working nicely atleast on this aspect .No word on NIA , GoI knows it was a wrong move

8) Asked why it took so longer to understand that India is a natural empire but as dilli billi said correction India is the longest surviving empire functional since dawn of tube light moments in gora log & mankind came into existence if one go by their definition of what makes up an empire & state . Point is what Shr. 5 pegs of JD down every night ABVjee ( sorry couldn't resist this dig :rotfl: ) decided to do in '98 has led to this statement from billi's mouth = dawn of realization or realization of dawn almost here :?: . In short now there's certain degree of acceptance to play the game .I will believe it more when i will see a world map or atleast a tiny globe on their table till then have to work with it

TWIW .

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 27 Jan 2012 07:28

I guess it belongs in this thread:
From RamN:


http://the-diplomat.com/the-editor/2012 ... k-failure/

India’s Think Tank Failure

January 19, 2012

By Jason Miks

Diplomatic Courier* has released its new list [Global Think Tanks, Policy Networks and Governance http://www.gotothinktank.com/] of the world’s leading think tanks, which always makes for interesting reading. In top spot this year in their global list is Washington-based Brookings Institution, which also came in second overall in the United States on the specific area of international affairs, behind the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).

The list is drawn up largely by the University of Pennsylvania, and this year included nominations for 5,329 think tanks around the world.

“Our rankings process, as in the past, relies on a shared definition of public policy research, analysis, and engagement organizations, a detailed set of selection criteria, and an increasingly open and transparent nomination and selection process,” said James McGann, director of the university’s think tank and civil societies program, in announcing the results.
It’s no surprise on the overall list to see organizations like Brookings, Chatham House in the U.K., Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Council on Foreign Relations and CSIS making up the top five. But what is in some ways surprising is the failure of India to place a single think tank in the global top 30.

That American think tanks dominate the top 30, taking 12 spots, isn’t a surprise – they are extremely well-funded here, and there’s a long-established culture of ideas generation based around this format in Washington and elsewhere that’s boosted by the ease with which former politicians and government officials move in and out of the “circuit.” U.S. think tanks undoubtedly benefit from the U.S.-style of government, which often involves officials being appointed, serving a relatively short period in government, making contacts and then returning to the research sector. You only have to look at the staff line-up of any of the top organizations to see a host of former (often very senior) government officials making up the ranks.

This is in stark contrast to parliamentary systems such as the U.K., where cabinet positions are typically filled by members of parliament – a British Foreign Office minister whose term in government has ended returns to the back benches rather than becoming a fellow at, say, Chatham House.

But none of this explains the absence of India on the list – an absence that should trouble Indian policymakers. At their best, think tanks can be a hotbed of ideas for government to draw upon, and if India has aspirations toward looking past its neighborhood and stepping up on the global stage it will need to draw upon the vigorous exchange and debate of ideas and policy proposals that such research centers can offer. And yet clearly, in the eyes of their peers, Indian think tanks lack the rigor and influence of a Germany, Canada or indeed Kenya, at least according to the latest list.

I’m going to quote here at some length from one of our writers on this issue from a couple of years back:

“Apart from (the) persistence of endemic poverty and poor infrastructure, India faces other critical challenges in its search for great power status: its acute shortage of critical human capital. At one level, the country can justifiably claim that it has some institutions of higher education which can compete with their peers on a global basis. But these institutions are mostly confined to the realms of science, engineering and management and despite the existence of these centers of excellence, mediocrity is the hallmark of many of India’s other educational institutions.

“For example, with the possible exception of the discipline of economics, India lags woefully behind in the other social sciences such as sociology, anthropology and political science. Few, if any, significant contributions to these fields of intellectual endeavor have emerged from India in recent decades. Most scholarship in these areas is either derivative, or worse, still mostly descriptive and hortatory.”

It’s the kind of damning indictment I’ve come to expect from those engaged in the China vs India debate that rages on our site and elsewhere. And yet these words were written by one of our Indian Decade bloggers, Sumit Ganguly.

And he’s right. When we’re sourcing material for the site, too often we find Indian think tank analyses littered with basic errors, unsubstantiated claims or rehashings of long debunked theories (Flashpoints contributor James Holmes is just one of many to have expressed frustration at how a likely non-event involving the Chinese and Indian navies last summer is still treated as fact in Indian media and policy circles).

It goes without saying that India has an enormous amount to offer the international community. But there’s no excuse for its absence on a list like this.

*I mistakenly referred to this year’s list as being published by Foreign Policy as it was in previous years. This year, it’s being being published by Diplomatic Courier, although the report is also being hosted on Foreign Policy. My apologies for any confusion.
___________________________________



AN EXPLANATORY NOTE FROM RAM NARAYANAN

The report on Global Think Tanks, Policy Networks and Governance (http://www.gotothinktank.com/), runs to some 96 pages. It can be down loaded at http://www.gotothinktank.com/wp-content ... TTEr-1.pdf

COUNTRIES WITH THE LARGEST NUMBER OF THINK TANKS:

USA 1815; CHINA 425; INDIA 292; UK 286; GERMANY 194; FRANCE 176; ARGENTINA 137; RUSSIA 112; JAPAN 103; CANADA 97; ITALY 90; SOUTH AFRICA 85; BRAZIL 82; ISRAEL 54; S. KOREA 35.

In spite of the presence of 192 think tanks in India, only some figure among the various categories of think tanks surveyed in this report, and they too not among the top ones.

The top think tank of the year 2011 – the top think tank in the world – is Brookings Institution of the US.

The top fifty think tanks – worldwide (non-US) - include U K 14, Germany 8, Belgium 4, France 2, China 2, Canada 2, Norway 2, Poland 2, Sweden 1, Russia 1, Lebanon 1, Denmark 1, The Netherlands 1, Brazil 1, Australia 1, Azerbaijan 1, India 1, Egypt 1, Indonesia 1, Japan 1, Singapore 1, South Africa 1.

The solitary India think tank is listed number 34 and it is, none of the well known ones such as Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) or Observer Research Foundation (ORF) or Institute of Peace & Conflict Studies (IPCS) or Centre for Policy Research (CPR), but the Center for Civil Society which does not even focus on foreign policy or national security issues.

IDSA, ORF, IPCS and CPR owe an explanation to the people of India as to why, in spite of the transparent procedure adopted by the University of Pennsylvania team which did the research and prepared the report, they failed to qualify for entry into the list of the top 50 think tanks in the world.

CPR (Centre for Policy Research) does figure as number 4 among the top thirty think tanks in Asia, a think tank which specializes in Economics (Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations -ICRIER) occupies the 15th place, The Energy Research Institute (TERI) takes the 17th place, the Centre for Civil Society (CCS) the 18th place and Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses (IDSA) the 24th place -- in all 5 Indian think tanks figure among the 30 Asian think tanks. The first place is taken by Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, the second by Japan Institute of International Affairs and the third by Centre for Strategic and International Studies of Indonesia. The Chinese in all have 7 think tanks among the thirty Asian ones, the Japanese 4, Singapore 4, Australia 2, Korea 2, Malaysia 2, Indonesia 1, Taiwan 1, Uzbekistan 1, Bangladesh 1.

Surprisingly, neither IDSA nor any other Indian think tank figures in the list of top fifty security and international affairs think tanks, worldwide -- US 18, UK 4, France 4, Germany 3, Belgium 3, China 2, Norway 2, the Netherlands 1, Sweden 1, Brazil 1. Korea 1, Indonesia 1, Australia 1, Poland 1, Singapore 1, Japan 1, Jordan 1, South Africa 1, Russia 1, Spain 1, Israel 1.

Of the top thirty international development think tanks, one is from India -- Center for Development Alternatives, Ahmedabad, which ranks # 34.

Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE), Bangalore is # 19 among the top thirty environment think tanks in the world.

Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi which specializes in economic and social development, surprisingly, figures under top thirty health policy think tanks and it holds, obviously an error, both ranks 25 and 29.

Not a single Indian think tank is counted among the top thirty domestic economic policy think tanks.

India Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER) is placed # 25 among the top thirty international economic policy think tanks.

Centre for Policy Research (CPR) is part of a list of top thirty social policy think tanks, ranking # 27. A think tank each from Bangladesh, Peru, South Africa and Singapore rank above CPR.

The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), # 16, and the Telecom Center of Excellence (TCOE), # 30, figure among the top thirty science and technology think tanks. India has many other excellent scientific and technological think tanks. It is not clear why none of them made it to the list.

Development Alternatives, # 22, and Common Cause, # 28, are among the top thirty transparency and good governance think tanks.

Development Alternatives, again, ranks # 23 among the 30 think tanks with the most innovative policy ideas/proposals.

No Indian think tank figures as part of the 20 best new think tanks (established in the last 18 months).

Again, not a single Indian think tank is included among the 30 think tanks worldwide with outstanding policy-oriented public policy research programs.

Even more distressing for a software giant, no Indian organization figures among the 30 think tanks with the best use of the internet or social media to engage the public.

Development Alternatives of India is the only one and counts as # 30 among the 30 think tanks with the best use of the media (print or electronic) to communicate programs and research.

Again, Development Alternatives at # 21, is the only Indian organization to be counted among the 30 think tanks with the best external relations/public engagement programs.

To its credit, but otherwise not really much of an achievement for India’s think tanks, Development Alternatives ( the sole Indian think tank) ranks at # 44 to figure among the 50 think tanks worldwide with the greatest impact on public policy (global). Does that mean Indian policymakers pay no attention whatsoever to the work done by think tanks such as IDSA, ORF, ICRIER, CPR and IPCS?

Of the 30 best university affiliated think tanks (global), not one is from India.

Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) is # 20 among the 30 best government affiliated think tanks, Congressional Research Service of the US secures the first place. Four Chinese think tanks are on this list with ranks #s 12, 17, 18 and 21.

No Indian organization figures among the 30 best worldwide party affiliated think tanks. Indian political parties no doubt do not need think tanks to advise them on what they focus on, viz. fissiparous issues!

Finally, one Indian institution figures among the 15 top think tanks with annual operating budgets of less than $5 million USD -- Integrated Research and Action for Development (IRADe) at # 15. IRADe of New Delhi "conducts research and policy analysis and connects various stakeholders including government, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), corporations, and academic and financial institutions. Its research covers many areas including energy & power systems, urban development, climate change & environment, poverty lleviation & gender, food security & agriculture, as well as the policies that affect these areas".

------------

ramana comments:

It could be psy-ops to evoke a me too response from Indian elite to ask US think tanks to setup bases in India. IOW make Indians pay on their own experimentations.

UPenn has CASI in business for a long time under Francin Frankel.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby johneeG » 27 Jan 2012 12:30

brihaspati wrote: And yes, there is more to the "coin hoards" "minting" story than mere banking. OT.


Bji,
keenly interested in the topic of Buddhist viharas/monastries, bikshus/bikkus and their role in society including the various factors that were involved. Please use the appropriate thread and post about it. Also, would be glad if you could tell briefly about the evolution of buddhism.


ramana
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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 03 Feb 2012 10:49



India’s Grand Strategy
K. Subrahmanyam Posted online: Fri Feb 03 2012, 03:38 hrs
Knowledge, not weapons, will be the currency of power in this century

India is unusual in having had a grand strategy at Independence to meet the external and internal challenges to its growth in order to become a major international actor. The Constituent Assembly’s oath in 1947 implied that India would promote world peace for the welfare of mankind, including its own population, and it would assume its rightful global position by developing itself to the standards of the industrialised world. This was the strategic goal. It had to be achieved in a world recovering from a war-ravaged economy and entering the Cold War. At Independence, India was a downtrodden former colony with 80 per cent poverty, a life expectancy of 31, food shortages and low literacy. India’s grand strategy during the second half of the 20th century, therefore, involved a policy of non-alignment to deal with external security problems, the adoption of the Indian Constitution to address governance challenges, and a partly centrally planned development strategy to accelerate growth.

Non-alignment, while a strategy, is often mistaken for ideology. Nehru first articulated it as a means to safeguard Indian security in 1946, after Churchill’s “Iron Curtain” speech, but before independence or Partition plans had been decided. But Nehru was not enthusiastic about a non-aligned movement. He favoured remaining in the Commonwealth and procuring defence equipment and licences from the UK, France and the US. It was only when the Soviet Union emerged as a more reliable provider of cheap but adequate military equipment against an increasingly hostile China that India’s security interests aligned with Moscow’s. Even then, India made defence deals in the 1970s and the 1980s with France and the UK, and also with the Reagan administration for jet engines. Non-alignment was therefore pragmatic, and meant that India could get support from a superpower if its national security was threatened.

While campaigning against nuclear weapons, India’s leadership from Nehru onwards also kept the nuclear option alive. India was compelled to declare itself a nuclear weapon power in 1998, only after the international community legitimised nuclear weapons by indefinitely extending the Non-Proliferation Treaty, and China armed Pakistan with nuclear weapons to balance India. Once India declared its nuclear capability, the attitudes of major powers changed.

The other aspects of India’s grand strategy related to governance and development. No other country is comparable to India in terms of its diversity of religions, languages and ethnicities. Consequently, unity is only possible under a secular, pluralistic, democratic and quasi-federal constitution. Although India’s Constitution implied accountable governance and the delivery of goods and services by the state, grave deficiencies emerged. Inadequate justice and law enforcement, unacceptable poverty and widespread illiteracy all persist, but universal adult franchise has empowered the previously disadvantaged to a level incomparable to elsewhere in the decolonised world. Although the record of the Election Commission is something to be proud of, deteriorating governance remains a serious internal security threat.

By century’s end, India was a pluralistic and secular democracy on the path to becoming the world’s third largest economy, with 62 per cent of the population above the poverty line despite its having grown fourfold. India had also dismantled the licence-permit-quota raj, demonstrated its technological prowess, and developed sizeable foreign exchange reserves. Despite such positive trends, poverty and illiteracy have still regrettably not been eliminated. Many have wondered whether India’s development could not have been expedited by following another model, such as China’s. They forget that Chinese communism allowed 30-40 million deaths from starvation. Independent India, by contrast, has never experienced that thanks to its democracy. Moreover, China benefited from Soviet assistance in the 1950s and external investments in the 1980s. Nor were many US allies significantly better off than India. It was only after the rehabilitation of Western Europe and Japan that available capital enabled the development of the Asian Tigers. India (along with the US) is unusual for democratising before industrialising. The emergence of most major nations — Britain, France, Russia, Japan and Germany — was viewed with concern by others, often resulting in war. While China’s rise causes concern today, India’s emergence does not.

The 21st century is vastly different from the 20th century. The number of states, their populations, their productivity and their standards of living have all increased manifold. The transportation and information revolutions have globalised the international system. Humanity as a whole has become more sensitised to gender, racial, and religious inequality and inequality of opportunity. Migration and demographic trends mean that pluralism will be required for peace and domestic stability. Violent conflict between great powers is becoming ever more unthinkable, and major states are today competing in peace, not war. There are many reasons for this: the existence of nuclear weapons, the establishment of the UN, powerful military alliances, decolonisation, the success of armed insurgencies and the spread of democracy. In this century, knowledge — not weapons — will be the currency of power and will determine the international hierarchy.

However, there are still challenges and threats to peaceful human progress and the preservation of pluralistic and democratic societies, including terrorism, failed states, one-party rule, pandemics and organised crime. The 20th century world order is unable to adequately address these challenges. The NPT cannot address terrorism resulting from acquiring nuclear weapons, old military alliances cannot deal with challenges such as Afghanistan, and the UN is not designed to defend pluralism, secularism, and democracy.

India’s gravest security problem is jehadi terrorism, centred in Pakistan. Pakistan has been using terrorism as a state policy since it acquired nuclear weapons with Chinese help and American acquiescence in the 1980s. The United States’ motives at the time were anti-Soviet, but China’s were anti-India. India, of roughly equal population to China, has proved that a developing country can grow rapidly without sacrificing either democracy or pluralism. Along with American influence, India’s rise threatens China’s hegemonic ambitions in Asia, and Pakistan serves as a convenient springboard by which to counter both.


{First time an Indian policy maker highlighting the US role in TSP nuclearization. The deeper perfidy was under Clinton in allowing PRC and North Korea transfer missile delivery vehicles for the nukes.}

Thus the real question about the future world order is whether it is to be democratic and pluralistic, or dominated by one-party oligarchies that prioritise social harmony over individual rights. If the US remains the world’s predominant power, and China is second, India will be the swing power. It will therefore have three options: partnering with the US and other pluralistic, secular and democratic countries; joining hands with China at the risk of betraying the values of its Constitution and freedom struggle; and remaining both politically and ideologically non-aligned, even if against its own ideals. Many Indians worry about an unequal partnership with the US because they do not appreciate the full potential of India as a knowledge power. In the years ahead, the US will require a reservoir of skilled manpower, and India will require green energy and agricultural technology to grow faster. The emerging Indo-US partnership is not about containing China. It is about defending Indian values from the challenges of both one-party rule and jehadism, and realising a future in which poverty and illiteracy are alleviated.

{Here KS garu is not recognising that the one world governing system that US aspires for is not compatible with the traditonal balance of power system he sees.

What if the US and PRC are really a duopoly or the two faces of the dominant system: one with capital and the other for manufactured goods. The introduction of China without controls into world markets has destroyed mfg capacity world wide. Secondly he sees these powers as being eminent for ever. We know that the baby boomer generation in US and the one child policy of China will cause demographic changes in the middle of this century around 2050. And to add to this mix by 2030, the population in India with IQ >110 will be 230Million that is about the size of current US population. Such being the case India should let these duopoly collapse on its own contradictions like the two headed bird in Sindbad's travels.}



Indian strategic thinker K. Subrahmanyam passed away on February 2, 2011. This article is the first of two adapted by Dhruva Jaishankar from four of Subrahmanyam’s unpublished essays on grand strategy, Indian foreign relations, defence policy and nuclear deterrence.

Part 2 will appear tomorrow.
express@expressindia.com



He speaks from the beyond of a new India for a new century.Glad he is putting to rest the canard about India not having a grand strategy.


Even the NSA SS Menon in his speech honoring him was alluding to Tanham's immature statement.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby svinayak » 03 Feb 2012 11:00

A civilizayion which has survived many millennial has to have had a grand strategy at a minimal.
The modern mind is unable to recognize it. It is a bodh tree

Asked why it took so longer to understand that India is a natural empire but as dilli billi said correction India is the longest surviving empire functional since dawn of tube light moments in gora log & mankind came into existence if one go by their definition of what makes up an empire & state .

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby Pranav » 03 Feb 2012 11:11

ramana wrote:India’s Grand Strategy: K. Subrahmanyam

Pakistan has been using terrorism as a state policy since it acquired nuclear weapons with ... American acquiescence in the 1980s. The United States’ motives at the time were anti-Soviet, ...


That is debatable.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby Prem » 03 Feb 2012 11:16

USA is helping now and no longer a road block in achieving 4k Nuke inventory so whole of China dont miss the taste of salted Nukes in case Paki get funny idea.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby pankajs » 03 Feb 2012 19:50

KS wrote:Thus the real question about the future world order is whether it is to be democratic and pluralistic, or dominated by one-party oligarchies that prioritise social harmony over individual rights. If the US remains the world’s predominant power, and China is second, India will be the swing power. It will therefore have three options: partnering with the US and other pluralistic, secular and democratic countries; joining hands with China at the risk of betraying the values of its Constitution and freedom struggle; and remaining both politically and ideologically non-aligned, even if against its own ideals. Many Indians worry about an unequal partnership with the US because they do not appreciate the full potential of India as a knowledge power. In the years ahead, the US will require a reservoir of skilled manpower, and India will require green energy and agricultural technology to grow faster. The emerging Indo-US partnership is not about containing China. It is about defending Indian values from the challenges of both one-party rule and jehadism, and realising a future in which poverty and illiteracy are alleviated.
ramana wrote:Here KS garu is not recognising that the one world governing system that US aspires for is not compatible with the traditonal balance of power system he sees.

What if the US and PRC are really a duopoly or the two faces of the dominant system: one with capital and the other for manufactured goods. The introduction of China without controls into world markets has destroyed mfg capacity world wide. Secondly he sees these powers as being eminent for ever. We know that the baby boomer generation in US and the one child policy of China will cause dempgraphic changes in the middle of this century around 2050. And to add to this mix by 2030, the population in India with IQ >110 will be 230Million that is about the size of current US population. Such being the case India should let these duopoly collapse on its own contradictions like the two headed bird in Sindbad's travels.

If what you suggest is true saar, it is imperative that the US and PRC not be allowed to join forces against India. So the choice cannot be 'remaining both politically and ideologically non-aligned'. Of the remaining 2 choices outlined by KS garu, the one advocated by him becomes the natural choice.

If the demographics ultimately overtake both, so much the better. Till such times we will be better off partnering with the US which is on the decline but can still offer us much more than the Chinese.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 03 Feb 2012 21:20

Pranav, What is debatable about that?

The charitable view is in 1984, the US looked away while PRC transferred the nukes to TSP. The debatable version is did they agree to it? The probable Cold War exigency was the need to ward of a SU retaliation on TSP to secure their Afghan deployment. In 1990s the Clinton Admin did not pursue the ring magents issue or other transfers. They did not prusue the missile transfers from PRC and NoKo. Instead their official Eihorn made dupliltitous statements about Sagarika etc in Congress to justify the TSP arming by PRC. All these measures added to Indian insecurity. Can you dispute that?


Jhujar, US is helping who? Please be more clear in your writing and thinking..

pankajs, They have joined forces in the past and continue to do so in some directions eg propping up TSP. IMHO they are the two faces of the same problem of a hegemonistic world order. US provides the intellectual and monetary capablity for this NWO which allows them to marshall world opinon to enforce the writ and PRC is the other side of that by being the rogue from whom the US 'protects'.

So casting them as two separate entities will lead to wrong conclusions.

They will devour each other as the mythical two headed bird. And the other factor is demographic changes underway any way.

Supporting US with Indian intellectual capital is feeding the system.

Indian capital should be to support Indian interestss.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby svinayak » 03 Feb 2012 23:14

To take care of US security interest and due to its rivalry with Russia, the rest of Asia has to suffer.
Is this fair?

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby Pranav » 03 Feb 2012 23:33

ramana wrote:Pranav, What is debatable about that?

The charitable view is in 1984, the US looked away while PRC transferred the nukes to TSP. The debatable version is did they agree to it? The probable Cold War exigency was the need to ward of a SU retaliation on TSP to secure their Afghan deployment. In 1990s the Clinton Admin did not pursue the ring magents issue or other transfers. They did not prusue the missile transfers from PRC and NoKo. Instead their official Eihorn made dupliltitous statements about Sagarika etc in Congress to justify the TSP arming by PRC. All these measures added to Indian insecurity. Can you dispute that?


The debatable point is whether the motivation was anti-Soviet, as KS wanted to believe, or whether it was anti-India.

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Re: Evolution of Indian Strategic Thought-1

Postby ramana » 04 Feb 2012 00:04

Eitehr way he is calling US on their role in TSP nuclearization right?


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