Strategic Implications of India's ABM Test

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Postby hnair » 02 Dec 2006 04:15

Tanaji wrote:1. announce that kashmir, kerala , west bengal are Dar -ul Islam and promise not to attack them if the leaders would "persuade" Indians to accept his terms


:evil: So it is Sheikh Anthony who is the RM? Anyways, dont worry we are already getting trained at Nagercoil/Coimbatore/Mangalore ashrams and infiltrating back into Kerala to fight the Caliphate hordes :P

Back to topic, what about the target that is considered the most plausible one for usage of Pak nukes - an advancing corps, which crossed that Kidwai line near Lahore or somewhere. Even at its current nascent stage, when deployed along the border, this system would be a damn useful umbrella to wade into the khaki pool.

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Postby Subramaniam » 02 Dec 2006 04:46

My guess is all nuke capable missile from TSP should/will be considered nuclear. A counter attack will be launched destroying TSP while the ABM takes care of the remnants. ABM is not 100% (atleast as of now) But what we will strive/aim is to get them close to that.

One could consider a JDAM response by TSP but wasn't that option always there? This test takes care of the overt threat or aimed to do so. Again it is more a bargaining chip than real until there comes a time when it will be real!

Yes surely it will affect thinking in several world capitals.

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Postby SaiK » 02 Dec 2006 05:39

it makes it mandatory for the neighbors (including china, pak and in the range countries) to make in well advance their intentions of missiles tests and launch details.. else, it may be considered as first strike.

this would also mean of unkil is trying to launch curise attacks into ME countries either from deigo garcia or from USS ships, he needs to keep in touch with us, before such launches.. under a Indian Subcontinent Missile Control Regime.

japanese extra-large BMD ground-based radars, detected russian bulova launches (per their claims).. we also need to study such large x-bands or wide bands., and inter-link with sat based systems.

thats would not change local politics around, but unkil and other would like seek info from Indian systems, and seek collaboration and live feeds.

it all depends on how far we can sense and reach.

go ICBM! should be the next yindoo agenda.

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Postby Prem » 02 Dec 2006 07:01

Next Cold Start gonna be too Hot for Pukes to Handle.
Extra 300 T90 will come handy.
New C30s will be very helpful.
Smerch will shower wonder .
Saddam Musharraf will be aprehended, Sindhi Balochi will go free.
Pakjabi fauj will be sold in bondage as Ashnas to Afghan brothers.
Lets hope ABM radar covers Iranian air space also. They might get emotional.

In the meantime terrorism by piglets will be increasing. Need to pay attention at home front. The price of commodoties like Shekhar Guptas and Raja Pandits will be going north. IT department need to get busy and do some auditing.

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Postby NRao » 02 Dec 2006 08:20

Tanaji,

What if:

1) If TSP lobs nukes, India takes out Chicom first
2) Dar U-Islam? Take out SA.

When it comes to nuclear calculus, Pakistan can never be viewed as a singular, free thinking, sane state. Just impossible. Her nukes and Islamic philosophy are both imported - funded is a better and more appropriate word.

The only viable control she has is a bunch of insane, drug addicted, thugs. And, may be, some Indian news outlets.

In the event of a nuclear attack I find it very hard to believe ANY nation would not take over all their communications, including news papers, etc. In India a state of emergency would be declared and out goes ToI, et al.
Even during "oridinary" war India used to clamp on news.

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Postby kgoan » 02 Dec 2006 10:13

Folks: aaahhh . . . .

This is starting to make a little more sense now . . .

You see, the issue is not Indian defence it's an Indian attack!!

See, the thing is we're looking at this as *raising* the costs of a potential Pak attack while we defend, while our friends are looking at it as *lowering* the cost and threshold of an Indian attack!

You get :?:

Consider an Indian first strike against PakeeLand is constrained by potential Pak retaliation by the remnants. But look at it now, *if* we get this working. After an Indian first strike the Pakees will *not* have 3 or whatever missiles per city as in Tanaji's scenario. Because most of them would be in the first target list of ours.

It's only the scattered and broken remanants that we have to defend against. Remember the "bolt-from-the-blue" stuff we laugh at the Pakees for fearing. Mebbe the Pakees aren't as stupid as we think - and they sure as heck don't believe GoI's pious mouthings of no-first-use.

Thats whats making some of folks a tad queazy as well.

Also, *that* freedom, to decide to go first or not puts *us* in the driving seat. That's true strategic independence. It gives our nuke posture as large an advantage over PakeeLand as our conventional forces currently have.

And I think Alok's right. An Indian ABM system isn't just about Pakistan. :)

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Postby Raja Ram » 02 Dec 2006 12:11

Gentle folks of BR!

Take a step back to see a larger picture, if I may say so. What I understand from the technical gurus is the following are essential for an Indian Theatre Missile Defence System (ITMDS).

(i) Space based assets for detecting launch of Ballistic Missiles (BM) at its origin (in the first phase) and possible destruction of the said missile at its boost phase from Space (second phase) - the latter I believe is what "Star Wars" of Reagan era.

(ii) Radar assets to cover and track incoming missiles from its launch thro' to its rentry with an integration to any interceptor system that allows for real time guidance

(iii) Interceptor systems that are multiple in terms of taking out the incoming missiles at different kill zones viz. at boost phase, ex atmosphere before re-entry,on re-entry and during terminal phase. The interceptors should be capable of eing launched from different platforms

We will get back to the above in a short while.

Now this test has surprised many just as the Shakti tests. Much like the Shakti tests, the timing and test itself was a surprise. In shakti tests, the biggest surprise was the "chotus" - that was a really surprise to many as it proved the extent and depth of Indian nuclear capability beyond doubt. (he likes of ramana and kgoan will know what iam talking about).

Similarly there is a surprise here in this test as well. The surprise is in the area of radars and in the realtime integration of hardware and software. There are innovations in hardware too.

Let us also understand what this test is not. By this test we have not got a an ABM sytem and it does not constitute the ability of operational ITMDS. The GoI or DRDO has not claimed this. With this test India has gained the capability to build an ABM system. The key technologies that need to be mastered have been proved to a significant extent. This is the real import of this test. There needs to be a lot more things happening before we can have an operational ITMDS.

Let us try and see what are the principal things in that regard. First, the rationale for an ITMDS stems from the DND. We have NFU as a policy. Which means second strike capability must be assured. Which in turn would require an effective ITMDS to ensure the survivability of our nuclear assets and delivery systems. The following therefore becomes crucial and integral components for building an effective ITMDS

(i) Space based technologies for monitoring and tracking of ballistic missile launches from security zones

(ii) Radar and Interceptor technologies for tracking and bringing down of incomings

(iii) Operationalizing the ITMDS in terms of command, control, assets and delivery systems across the services as part of the strategic forces.

Now if you look at the initiatives of the GOI it does indicate that clear programmes exists in all the areas that are listed above. Why do I say this? Consider the following for starters

(i) The AirForce chief going on record in creating an Aerospace command. The ISRO program to test re-usable launchers (will come in handy in placing mil sats at low orbits); the Divya Drishti programe for integrating real time communication to battle theaters, the cartosats and high resolution imagery may also lead to the first dedicated mil sat. IIRC there was a mention somewhere that ISRO had such plans. All this indicate that the Space assets for defence is definitely on the agenda.

(ii) The likes of SivathanuPillai have gone on record that the next stage will be the developments of radars and anti missile missiles right after one of the Brahos tests. The programme for sea based launches (Sagirika/Dhanush) with possible undersea launch capability, the further development program for Rajendra series of radar, the acquision of Green Pine and other systems all indicate that there are several programmes running in building the required radars, interceptors and launch platforms.

(iii) From an operational standpoint, the setting up of an Aerospace Command in the AF, the ATV programme and extensive program of naval launch capabilities of ballistic and cruise missiles in the IN, the operational missile groups in the Army conducting their own launch and testing of Pritivi in the recent times all indicate to these operational aspects being addressed.

Above all, consider the time line. By all accounts the present test is a result or a milestone of 5 years of work. Now look at the time when the then GOI came out with a statement somewhat welcoming the US ABM initiative. It does seem to me that the GOI was already on course in this journey and it was in India's interest not to be against this initiative.

There is also another important implication. In all the key technology areas where foreign technology is not going to be forthcoming, India is going to build the capability themselves. Just like the 3 stage nuclear plan, India is ready with plans for all key areas. This does not stop us from collaboration. Just like the J18 deal, India will be ready to collaborate but only on certain terms. India is quite prepared to work and build the capability otherwise on its own. This is what I call the "Kalam Principle". Although it predates him and he himself is a product of this philosophy, for convenience I use this term since he articulated in WOF.

Not many of the think tanks have grasped this point about India. They will be surprised time and again if they have not. India does not do things in pursuit of some pre-determined self image or because of the personal agendas of scientific establishment as the likes of George Perkovich and others claim.

So what next? I had already indicated some events. Like an Oracle :wink:
I have no intention of upseting bradmins and crow eating gurus. They are far more valuable to the forum than a rambler like me. :lol:

Let us see what are the implications in the near time. Watch out for offers of "cooperation" and deals that will involve CRE by back door. Also watch out for articles by think tankers. One group will degrade the tests and capability - just like Wallace et al after Shakti andd the other will casitgate India for accelerating an arms race in South Asia (group funded by Pakistan and China - Cohen, Albright can earn some money). Technology denials to India under some provision or the other to stop a fully Indian ITMDS and some technology proliferation to ensure better survivability of nuclear strike capability (eg. Submarine launch capability for Pakistan) by US/West and China.

So there it is folks, yet another rambling commentary on things important and otherwise. Till the next ramble, take it for what it is worth.

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Postby hanumadu » 02 Dec 2006 12:24

JCage wrote:
It would have been *even better* if this PADES test was kept under wraps for another three years and revealed at a stage when its unveiling would have cost Pak more strategic space.

By playing our hand too openly, we also have the negative aspect- of allowing our stated enemy, countermeasures, even if quickly purchased. By tomtomming the Phalcon, we ensured Pak went and signed up for 7 Erieyes. Run silent, run deep is something India has to do.


I was thinking on the same lines. Probably it was not feasable to hide it any longer once you test it. India would have to inform Pakland about missile tests and sattelites would have been trained on the test location. They would have anyway found out what we were up to.

--Ranadheer

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Postby Lkawamoto » 02 Dec 2006 13:31

Alok_N wrote:
JCage wrote: Previous data has spoken of ~400km and 200 target track ability. This is more than twice as powerful. So the issue is of range against what kind of targets, and whether the radar does have significant local hand in it, ie can we make it on our own now? Or do we at least have the source codes for it. Curiouser and curiouser. :)


does that mean 200 active targets in a 400 km radius? ... that would require serious real time pattern recognition ... my guess would be custom firmware ... of course, in today's world everything is "source code" at some level ...


i believe that such calculations undoubtedly require hardware assist, for example an array virtex-5 fpgas from xilinx perform idct on the incoming radar signature and embedded powerpcs do intermediate level calculations and data filtering, this then is fed over pci-express to a pentium for top level analysis and decision, for the range and number of targets you are talking about an array size of such slices would be 64 x 64

message, "everything is not just code, there is a lot of verilog programming as well as logic design and state-machine design"

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Postby ramana » 02 Dec 2006 21:06

Rajaram said
Above all, consider the time line. By all accounts the present test is a result or a milestone of 5 years of work. Now look at the time when the then GOI came out with a statement somewhat welcoming the US ABM initiative. It does seem to me that the GOI was already on course in this journey and it was in India's interest not to be against this initiative.


I think the strategic surprise in the West is because they thought India was welcoming NMD as a supplicant and not as an equal power. There was a misapprehension of the facts.

This test proves that Indian interest in NMD was for their own reasons and not as a supplicant for a US NMD umbrella. This is a blow to H&D and image. To add to R^2 cautions look for article about betrayal etc from the think tanks and more importantly US officials.

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Postby Alok_N » 02 Dec 2006 21:45

Lkawamoto wrote:message, "everything is not just code, there is a lot of verilog programming as well as logic design and state-machine design"


not to push this point too far ... but verilog is also just code ... it is impressive how everything is just code now ... I have to program my oscilloscope too ...

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Postby hnair » 02 Dec 2006 22:15

kgoan wrote:You see, the issue is not Indian defence it's an Indian attack!!


Yep, as I mentioned above, it is the "Kidwai line" that is suddenly starting to fade.

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Postby menon » 02 Dec 2006 22:29

hnair wrote:
Tanaji wrote:*********
:evil: So it is Sheikh Anthony who is the RM? Anyways, dont worry we are already getting trained at Nagercoil/Coimbatore/Mangalore ashrams and infiltrating back into Kerala to fight the Caliphate hordes :P



I can tell ou one thing of RM. I have known him. He is 100% honest, and his integrity and patritotism is beyond reproach. He is not like the run of the mill kangrease politicians.

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Postby menon » 02 Dec 2006 22:57

And one thing I must say of pukistanis. They are very practial. They LOVE self preservation so any chance of damage to their cities (how many have they ? 5?) they will do nothing. Look at the way they offered their Musharaffs on a mere phone call by GOTUS?
so we need only assure their destruction and they will sooner or later offer their musharaffs to us too.

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Postby hnair » 02 Dec 2006 23:16

menon wrote:I can tell ou one thing of RM. I have known him. He is 100% honest, and his integrity and patritotism is beyond reproach. He is not like the run of the mill kangrease politicians.


btw, that comment of mine was purely blowing a "tongue firmly in cheek" response at Tanaji's broad brush strokes over some states. Anthony is one of the rarest of Congress folks in Kerala who has called a soil mover, a spade. That is why I chose AKA to stress my point about broad brush strokes.

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Postby Arun_S » 02 Dec 2006 23:24

One other aspect that should be kept in mind is what potential adversaries will consider to factor in Indian ABM?I submit it raises the bar for their missiles, and their effort on decoys and MIRV. The latter requires technology, more weapons and destabilizing to deterrence (for it invites first strike). So much so that biggest antagonists US and Russia could not handle it and have mutually stuck to make all their MIRV missiles to carry only single warhead.

Now if some recall Akash discussion on its ability to simultaneously attack multiple attacking aircrafts in close formation. Some thought how could it be possible? And now some of those guys are believers because gora sahaib in Europe have demonstrated such SAM. One can see its relevance to ABM in disabling multiple objects (including decoys) in a cluster raining down.

I also recall the smart Yindoo support that took US aback when India whole-heartedly supported American unilateral abrogation of ABM treaty with Russia. Clearly India had an axe to grind, & to use the axe to wreck the contemporary order for make room for its own interests.

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Postby abhischekcc » 03 Dec 2006 01:21

I am having to type this again as I lost the file where I had written this earlier, hence the delay.

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

saty, this should answer your concern.

Lkawamoto, this should tell you why we are whooping about the success even though no system has been deployed.

All the desi journalists who want to get educated on the importance of the ABM system should not pay attention to their collegues who lambast it, but instead go through the logic of war as it has changed in the 20 century.

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

A country's military nuclear strength in the nuclear age is determined not so much by the actual usage of nuclear weapons, but by the possesion and the ABILITY to use them. Compare this with the WW2 period, when countries had to actually go to war to threaten other countries. In the nuclear age, just the threat of war, and not actual war, was sufficient to achieve political objectives. In Cluaswitz's words, the 'higher direction of war' was achived without actually going to war. Just like this difference exists in the pre and post WW2 worlds, so also a difference exists between the cold war and post cold war periods. The cold war was about nuclear deterence, hence actual possession of nuclear weapons was necessary for deternce. But look at how the world has changd, now simply the ability to field weapons (and not actually fielding them) is sufficient to achieve deterence. Look at how Iran is keeping US at bay.

To understand how this situation has come about, let us look at the first example of a country that won a war with weapons it did not possess, and the enemy knew about it as well. I am talking about the SDI and the end of the cold war. SDI (strategic defence initiative) of US was supposed to shoot down missiles from the USSR. But while the system was on the drawing board, and only a few exploratory tests had been carried out, the Soviets sued for peace, got out of Eastern Europe. Why did they get scared of a system that did not even exist? Because they realized that if the system worked as well as it was said to (the Americans faked some data), then they would not be able to withdraw in dignity later. So they ended the cold war while they till could on their terms. They knew that the soviet nuclear threat would vanish in the face of the missile shield.

Now, compare the situation in India. We just unveiled a system that threatens to neutralise not just the pakistani nuclear threat, but also the chinese one. How will they react?

See the post by Arun_S above where he says that this system can detroy every missile in paki inventory.
So, to threaten India they need to have new missiles.
And where will they go to get these missiles?
China, of course.
But China has its own problems.
US is far less indulgent of its proliferation activities because they ultimately hurt US's own security.
Plus, India is offering cooperation (JJ Singh's statement).
So, China has both an incentive and a disincentive to not give paki any new missiles.
They can, of course, upgrade their own systems against India. But there is no gaurantee of their success as before.

Pakistan can of course increase the size, not the quality of its arsenal. But doing requires money. Something pakistan does not have a lot of. Building 20 nukes annually requires an infrastructure worth several billions. Building 100 nukes pr year will require tens of billions of dollars of infrastructure. Where will a 80 billion USD economy find that money?

Let's compare the costs to India and Pakistan. India has spent 570 Crors (~120 million USD)on development. Countering this investment will require pak/china to spend billions of $. Pak simply can't afford this. China may, but will still find this dificult.

Think about it. For every dollar we spend, we are forcing them to consider spending upto 20 to 40 times more money. Even china does not have this kind of cash. It was precisely the threat of bankruptcy that forced the soviets to sue for peace. Will it do the same for China and Pak???

So what are the options available to them:
1. Sue for peace (very tasteless to them)
2. Try to force the issue by war (very uncertain, and India has demostrated staying power)
3. Do nothing for now, and then try to do 1 or 2 in vastly unfavourable circumstances later.

The soviets faced the same dilemma. They choose option # 1. Unfortuantely, my political instincts tell me that the stage is being set for another round of Indo-Pak war in a few years time. But this time one thing will be differnet from before. US will be on our side (politically, not militarily). More on this later.

Pakistan has a fourth option - increase terror attacks against India. Note that the most dastardly attacks came after the nuke tests in 1998. I think, these will continue/increase in the short and medium term. India can force the issue by ripping pakistan financially. I for one hold the opinion that terrorism will end the day India stops water flowing into Pakistan. Heck, not just in that day - it will stop in that very hour, that very minute.

If china or pakistan want to maintain the same threat level to India, they have to start spnding money on nuke infrastructure now, now 5-10 years later when the system is deployed. Hence, the system has an immediate positive effect on India's security. This is the most important point of any ABM deterence logic.


The success of the ABM test has a positive effect for us in one more way - it opens doors for co-development with other countries that already possess such a technology. Remember how the successful first flight of the LCA had every tom and his uncle offer Fighter A/C production lines to India? Such cooperation itself will shorten the development life cycle.

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

Summary:
The test is important because it forces our adversaries' to increase expediture by several orders of magnitude to maintain the same threat level to us. We can manipulate this difference in expenditure levels to our advantage by forcing them with either financial ruin or strategic decline. This ability gives us the initiative to damage our opponents' national and military budgets. Even if such ability is limited, we have something that they don't. This is assymetric warfare at its finest.

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Postby Anoop » 03 Dec 2006 02:07

abhischekcc wrote: Because they realized that if the system worked as well as it was said to (the Americans faked some data), then they would not be able to withdraw in dignity later. So they ended the cold war while they till could on their terms. They knew that the soviet nuclear threat would vanish in the face of the missile shield.


That's a simplistic reading of the flow of events; given the number of nuclear warheads pointed at the US, there was no doubt in either the Soviet or the American mind that a full fledged nuclear exchange would have completely destroyed each other.

The Soviet collapse was a result of the mismanagement of the economy in the decades prior to the 80s as well as their decision to lead with political reforms before economic reforms.

Extending the above (flawed) Cold War reading to the Indo-Pak scenario also ignores two other points - (i) Pak fighter aircraft can drop nuclear weapons over India whereas the distances involved effectively negated the Soviet aircraft threat (though it kept the USAF threat alive) and (ii) the nature of both Pakistan's and India's deterrents do not require either 100% success or failure in order to be effective. You have argued that India does not need a 100% successful ABM to gain the strategic upperhand, but have failed to point out that Pakistan needs only the possibility of 1 or 2 successes (which India cannot rule out) in order for Pakistan's own deterrence to be effective. Here the key is that given India's NFU, Pakistan's nuclear deterrence is intended primarily to protect itself from being overwhelmed conventionally and secondly to use that threat to carry out subconventional warfare (terrorism). Thus, it does not have to maintain the same level of threat to India, because India is not interested in calling its nuclear bluff. What would we do after calling its bluff? Invade and occupy Pakistan? We are only interested in minimizing the damage to ourself should push come to shove.
-------------

The greatest benefit from this ABM demonstration is that it has stabilized the nuclear postures in the subcontinent. In other words, India's NFU doctrine has just gotten a shot in the arm.

As to how Pakistan will respond, terrorism will continue as usual because this test does not change India's inability to stop that. A more provocative Pakistani response would have been to move to a warhead mated missile posture, but Pakistan's own internal decision-making fractures and the American oversight over Pakistan's nuclear weapons effectively rule that out.

It also strikes me that with the "peace-process" with Pakistan now three years old and the Western experience with Pakistan turning sour (which was inevitable, given Musharraf's desire to service both the Islamists-Chinese combine and the West) the timing of the test is very good. The Indian decision to stay calm in the face of grave provocations by Pakistan and its knowledge that the Western romance of Pakistan would indeed prove short-lived has paid off so far (case in point being the Israeli help with making the radar for the ABM).

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Postby milindc » 03 Dec 2006 03:10

Anoop wrote:The greatest benefit from this ABM demonstration is that it has stabilized the nuclear postures in the subcontinent. In other words, India's NFU doctrine has just gotten a shot in the arm.


What if we turn this premise of NFU on its head. After 3-5 years, when our ABM tech is far along, we renegade on NFU. Think about it....

abhischekcc wrote:Think about it. For every dollar we spend, we are forcing them to consider spending upto 20 to 40 times more money. Even china does not have this kind of cash.


China has 1 trillion $ in reserves.. they can spend..

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Postby abhischekcc » 03 Dec 2006 03:15

Anoop:

The soviet collapse was due to 3 main reasons:
1. Economy not able to keep up with western capitalist economies.
2. Afghan war costing a lot in money, men, and materials.
3. SDI - creating the threat of economic ruin.

I have not mentioned points 1 and 2 to keep the flow simple - not simplistic. :) As I have mention 2-3 times before, I am more interested in how this test will shape up the political responses of Pak and China (I am for the moment ignoring the 'fourth horseman'). Because the political responses come immediately, the military ones will take years to shape up.

Pakistan is in the same dire straits as USSR in late eighties. China is in much better shape, but the moot point is does China have the need to engage India in an open arms race at this time in its development? I don't think so. Hence (I repeat) China has a need to keep India in good humour.

You have argued that India does not need a 100% successful ABM to gain the strategic upperhand, but have failed to point out that Pakistan needs only the possibility of 1 or 2 successes (which India cannot rule out) in order for Pakistan's own deterrence to be effective.

I never said that we don't need a 100% successful ABM system. I said that every gain in the effectiveness of the system requires a disproportionate response from the other side to counter it. The 'millions'-to-billions' expediture.

Indeed, your point makes me think whether Pakistan is even in consideration in this system's design or not. This system is too big to be paki centric. No, this system has to be meant for china. 8)


The greatest benefit from this ABM demonstration is that it has stabilized the nuclear postures in the subcontinent. In other words, India's NFU doctrine has just gotten a shot in the arm.

I am not so sure. Nuclear posture is part of the overall political posture. And this tool gives us the ability to engage both China and pak in a ruinious arms race (not yet, but eventually). I think we will have an advantage to exploit against them.

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Postby abhischekcc » 03 Dec 2006 03:23

milindc wrote:China has 1 trillion $ in reserves.. they can spend..


Errr. They also have similar size of NPAs. ANyway that is not the point. A dictatorship can always find the moeny it needs. and when it has a growing economy, toys can be overpaid for too.

What extra expenditure does is to provoke a rethink. If the cost is too high, they may simply decide to reduce tensions. Do you think Sun Yuxi would hve made the statements he did if he knew New Delhi has pointed 20 nukes at Beijing and China's missiles cannot reach New Delhi?

China's money is neither unlimited nor freely availale for weapons.

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Postby Kumar » 03 Dec 2006 03:28

Not sure whether these have been posted or not. Crossposting.

India crosses the ballistic missile threshold: Rajiv Singh

BMD Focus: India's giant leap forward : UPI


India's successful test of its own anti-ballistic Prithvi missile Monday still leaves the country a long way from fielding its own, home-produced short- and intermediate- range BMD systems. But it wasn't chickenfeed either.
...
"According to DRDO officials, the new missile had inertial guidance in mid-course and active-seeker guidance (i.e. a radar-seeking warhead) in the terminal phase," Singh wrote. "While the first stage of the interceptor was similar to the Prithvi missile, its second stage was a totally new segment. The yet to be named "high supersonic" interceptor missile has been developed by the DRDO as part of an 'exo-atmospheric intercept system' designed to 'hit-to-kill' incoming ballistic missiles."

Singh noted that DRDO officials told reporters the new ABM could detect a target in less than 30 seconds and launching an interceptor at it within 50 seconds. "According to the officials, many technologies, like high-maneuverability of the interceptor missile, were validated in the test. The flight time for nuclear capable missiles launched from Pakistan is a bare 5 to 8 minutes," he wrote.
...
The upgraded Prithvi ABM interceptor appears to rank with the U.S. Patriot PAC-3 system, Russia's S-300 and Israel's Arrow in its intended ability to intercept short- and intermediate-range ballistic missiles. However, the Patriot, the S-300 and the Arrow are all deployed, much tested systems. Even after the extremely positive results of Monday's test, the upgraded Prithvi ABM still clearly as a long way to go to achieve that status.

Indeed, the United States has been trying to sell the Patriot to India as part of the increasingly close strategic weapons cooperation between the two nations. However, so far the Indians have balked at that. Also Singh noted what he called "informed speculation over the years ... that India may already have deployed a few batteries of the Russian S-300 system as an interim arrangement."
...
At the end of the day, when all the cautions, caveats and qualifiers have been made, a crucial underlying fact remains: India has now shown its capability to home produce an effective anti-ballistic missile prototype. France, Britain, Germany, China and Japan have not yet developed the capability to make one of these by themselves, though Japan will certainly is on a crash program to do so with extensive U.S. cooperation and China is already lavishly supplied with S-300 systems, and possibly others, bought from Russia.

The strategic balance of the world therefore shifted on Monday. India took a very large step indeed and served notice that it has much to give, as well as to receive, in its strategic weapons and BMD cooperation with the United States.

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Postby disha » 03 Dec 2006 04:55

Hi! Long time follower [5+ years], reposting again after a long time. Great posts and good discussion.

Following the posts and thinking about the strategic implications of the ABM test for a long time and have to share those thoughts. First specific to DRDO and then to the implications of the ABM test.

1. First, my me too congratulations to DRDO. Excellent job done so far. Forget the IE's and the TOI's of the world - DRDO has my respect.

2. Second, I think DRDO is learning to manage expectations very well. Prior to the test they announced that if the missile cross the trajectories they will consider the test successful. In the light of the hostile media and some inferiority complex suffering desis (ICSD's) it made sense to set the expectation low.

3. What shocked most of the DDM is that they did not expect the ABM to succeed so spectacularly. They were probably ready with their rona-dhona act stating that the trajectory crossing is just a start and it will take decades for us to get any kind of safety net. Again the DRDO did set the bar low for the first test and prudently so.

4. Now coming to the strategic implications:

a. India in one stroke has put an hyphen in the Nodongs of IROTs. That is, IROT went from Nodong to No-dong.

b. *Assuming* that our PADE has only 25% kill probability, it is still possible to let go say 5 PADE ABM missiles against an incoming target. With some help from madrassa math, I can say that the probability of kill is now >90% [yes it is not that straight forward, but I just saw the CNN-IBN video and there DRDO claims 99.98% kill probability with a two-tier system. And I believe their math is better than my math]. Now if you are a Porki jernail, your costs have gone up tremendously. There is now a distinct possibility that *none* of your missiles are effective. Please repeat that, I am a porki jernail and none of my missiles can be effective and if I let go my missiles then I do not have a counter threat. And now imagine what you will go through.

c. Yes! I can make my missiles MIRV'ed!!! Lizard is my friend and is ready to give me the tech! But hold on, the ABM demonstrated can take out any missile in the boost-cruise phase. MIRVs are useless if they do not get released and they get released only in terminal phase! Practically you [the porki jernail that is] do not have any solution.

d. Do not tell me that my no-dongs can make "dog leg" kind of maneouvers during boost phase. They do not and none of the BM in the world do that during boost phase!

So strategically, we have proved that no-dongs are really just that. No-Dong. It would be imprudent for a jernail to start an arms race - particularly a noocular arms race.

Ofcourse there is the argument that the system is not deployed. But hey, what if the GOI and the DRDO were putting carnations in our ears? That is, the system was being tested all along and then they just wanted to demo before secretly handing over it to the Armed forces. That is a possibility! As a porki jernail, that thought will cross my mind. So my window of action is now curtailed. Damn those indoos.

Personally, I do want to state that at this stage the ballistic missile threat from the immediate neighbourhood is contained!

That is what I gather from other posts. I have read counter-arguments and has been playing it in my mind since several days. And still I come to the above conclusion.

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Postby Neupane » 03 Dec 2006 05:06

Now the Times of India reports on Israeli imprint on the latest missile interception technology says black listed defense analyst Rajat Pandit -

Israeli imprint in Prithvi missile test
Rajat Pandit
[ 3 Dec, 2006 0010hrs ISTTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]

NEW DELHI: In yet another indication of the deep but often covert strategic ties between New Delhi and Tel Aviv, it's now clear that there was an Israeli imprint in the incipient ballistic missile defence (BMD) system tested by India last Monday.

The crucial long-range tracking radar (LRTR) used in the Indian "exo-atmospheric" BMD system, which "successfully intercepted" an incoming Prithvi missile on November 27, owes its origins to the Israeli Green Pine early-warning and fire control radar. India had imported two Green Pine radars, which constitute a crucial part of the Arrow-2 BMD system deployed by Israel to counter the threat of Iranian and other missiles, in a hush-hush manner in 2001-2002.

"Other than the basic radar, which we modified to meet our requirements, all the other elements, hardware and software, are homegrown," said DRDO chief controller R&D, V K Saraswat. Since missile defence can take place both inside (endo) or outside (exo) the earth's atmosphere, DRDO will now test an "endo-atmospheric interceptor" in the next four-five months. The "exo-atmospheric" hypersonic interceptor missile tested on Monday destroyed the Prithvi missile at an altitude of 50-km.

The "endo-atmospheric interceptor", in turn, will shoot the "hostile" missiles much closer to earth with a 30-km range. "Our endo-atmospheric interceptor will be similar to the American Patriot-3 AMD system, which has a 15-km range," said Saraswat.
Though the indigenous BMD system is still several years away from becoming operational, as reported by TOI earlier, it will be a "unique" two-tier system once it is ready. The system will have a mix of the two types of interceptor missiles for a kill probability of 99.8%. "A couple of these missile batteries, for instance, should be able to protect Delhi," said Saraswat. "We have made a very good beginning. At least half-a-dozen tests would be required over the next three years before the system can become ready," he added.

DRDO claims to have modified the Green Pine radars, which can detect targets at ranges up to 500-km and can track them at speeds over 3,000 metre per second. The modifications included making the radar capable of tracking intermediate range ballistic missiles.
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Isra ... 690102.cms

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Postby rsingh » 03 Dec 2006 05:06

Disha Thannks for" inferiority complex suffering desis (ICSD's" I was trying to put this in words for long.

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Postby ramana » 03 Dec 2006 05:10

Raj, I think SLIME is more appropriate- Self Loathing Indian MEdia.

Subset of DIE- DeRacinated Indian Elite.

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Postby rocky » 03 Dec 2006 05:12

One of the things this test has made (without us having to even wait for the successful deployment of this tech) is that it has made the entire missile and nuclear proliferation cycle between TSP-China-North Korea come a full circle and put a lid on it.

Even an alleged Packee or Chinese ABM test will not open it up.

The price of a string of pearls just shot through the roof.

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Postby Kumar » 03 Dec 2006 05:20

It sounds a bit naughty to have a Prithvi no-dong a Ghauri in the boost phase itself.

In an accursed Paki moment, I even imagined the iron pillar at Qutub Minar complex in Delhi with fins.

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Postby disha » 03 Dec 2006 05:23

Just found out from Yindoo -

" .... Dwelling on interception by the liquid-fuelled Prithvi missile, Dr. Saraswat said the decision to destroy a missile at a distance of 50 km was undertaken in view of the likely threat perception from IRBMs. Defence scientists were looking at a pack of six missiles to decisively intercept the enemy missile with a kill probability of 99 per cent. They felt two missile batteries would be enough to defend a large city like Delhi or Chennai. The project for developing missile interception capability began three years ago. After several simulations and changes in guidance and control software, the target missile was launched on November 19 this year and intercepted electronically. ..." :-)

And also ...

"... The DRDO modified the Israeli Greenpine radar to enable it detect IRBM missiles with a velocity of 5 km per second from a distance of 600 km. ... "

So all missiles from our immediate neighbourhood can be targeted at Boost phase itself.

----
The URL is www.hindu.com/2006/12/03/stories/2006120312940100.htm. Sorry if the url is reposted, BR is sometimes too fast with their news gatherers.

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Postby ramana » 03 Dec 2006 05:38

When Kgoan said 80 missile units and wanted to know how many per Unit I guessed three. So from the two units and six missiles per city that guess is right.

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Postby Anoop » 03 Dec 2006 06:09

abhischekcc wrote:The soviet collapse was due to 3 main reasons:
1. Economy not able to keep up with western capitalist economies.
2. Afghan war costing a lot in money, men, and materials.
3. SDI - creating the threat of economic ruin.


Abhischek,

My comments were not intended to be a criticism and I'm sorry if they came across that way. However, when comparing the Cold War to possible Pakistani-Chinese responses consider these points:

- If the USSR's economy had been healthy would they have caved in to the threat of SDI?

- How much credibility did SDI have among military planners at the time, given the 1000s of warheads they had aimed at each other?

- Is either Pakistan or China in a competition with India to divide the world into two competing camps with different economic and political ideologies? If not, does it have the same compulsions to enter an arms race to draw new allies/retain old allies by showing how much better it is over the other in every sphere of scientific, military and economic endeavor, much like the Cold War was?

- If none of these are true, then might we not be disappointed when neither China nor Pakistan fold in response to India's BMD capabilities?

And this tool gives us the ability to engage both China and pak in a ruinious arms race (not yet, but eventually). I think we will have an advantage to exploit against them.


And why would we want to do that and follow the Soviet model of collapse by engaging in an arms race? It's not only China that has learnt the lessons of the Cold War, India has too! The NFU is a direct example of the need to obtain a minimum credible defense and focus on economic growth under that umbrella. The BMD just makes the umbrella so much stronger, but it would be a pity to overturn the umbrella and use it as a boat in an arms race of our making!!

A look at the recurring arms acquisition in the sub-continent shows that the expenditure has been heavily weighted in the conventional area. This is so because the one-time (costly) acquisition of nuclear and missile capabilities has been deemed sufficient by all parties given their military and political aims and because such strategic weapon systems are not available for sale and Pakistan does not have the ability (or need) to fine tune the system by indigenous efforts. China's arms acquisition spree has been weigthed heavily towards modernizing their large conventional armed forces and acquiring a blue water navy.

Will India's BMD capabilities change the pattern of either country's arms acquisition? I argue no, because there are simply no commensurate rewards for that effort. Pakistan's primary need is to achieve theatre parity in conventional forces so that India does not make much territorial advance - so they focus on blunting IAF's AWACS advantage and submarines to threaten the IN. China's interest is in keeping alive the belief that it can force a Taiwan fait accompli before the US can interfere, so they strengthen their Navy and seek bases in the IOR to protect their shipping lanes. Finally, India has shown no desire to press home the advantage we have over Pakistan militarily and China realizes that a war with India does neither country any good. India realizes that the need of the hour is economic strength and political stability, not a need to taunt (by deeds not words) either Pak or China into an arms race.

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Postby Alok_N » 03 Dec 2006 06:57

disha wrote:*Assuming* that our PADE has only 25% kill probability, it is still possible to let go say 5 PADE ABM missiles against an incoming target. With some help from madrassa math, I can say that the probability of kill is now >90%


probability of miss = (0.75)**5 = 24% => Prob of kill with 5 = 76%

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Postby Shankk » 03 Dec 2006 07:15

Anoop wrote:Finally, India has shown no desire to press home the advantage we have over Pakistan militarily and China realizes that a war with India does neither country any good. India realizes that the need of the hour is economic strength and political stability, not a need to taunt (by deeds not words) either Pak or China into an arms race.


Thanks Anoop for rational and sane thoughts. Need of the hour is not to threaten anybody but just keep calm and raise the stakes if someone tries to harm India. No matter what, we have to live with our neighbors, whether we like it or not. Going to a war or even limited conflict with them will just keep India busy in this theater (not that anybody here is proposing that) and outsiders will take benefit of that. It is unfortunate that Pakistan does not understand this and initiates something like Kargil but it is more of an initiative of others (mainly US and China) who are prodding them. Now with US having less interests in Pakistan and China realizing that helping Pakistan outright will cost them relations with India it will hopefully be a different game.

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Postby disha » 03 Dec 2006 07:24

Alok_N wrote:probability of miss = (0.75)**5 = 24% => Prob of kill with 5 = 76%


Assuming that 6 PADE ABMs achieve 99% kill, then the probability of each comes to 50%. That is from the above eqn. probability of miss = (0.50)**6 = 1% => prob of kill with 6 = 99%.

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Postby disha » 03 Dec 2006 07:52

Anoop wrote:
abhischekcc wrote:
And this tool gives us the ability to engage both China and pak in a ruinious arms race (not yet, but eventually). I think we will have an advantage to exploit against them.


And why would we want to do that and follow the Soviet model of collapse by engaging in an arms race?


I believe what it does is send the "arms race" into an entirely different orbit. The message it sends to Pakis is that they cannot compete with us in the missile arms race. Either they give up on that option or they can continue, but it will not necessarily be sane. Yes the race does take away some of the precious resources away, but the quantum of resources will be more for porkis compared to India.

This is what led the Soviet bloc to come to the negotiating table. It was the quantum of resources that the Soviet bloc had to spend compared to the western bloc. Can we apply the same equation here?

Now is the quantum of resources spent by lizard is same or less or more than the quantum of resources spent by India? Note that whatever is spent in the "race" with lizard will automatically take care of the other regional wannabes.

Another thing we forget is that Defense expenditure is considered as a cost. If it is not considered as investment, it should be at-least considered as a cost of doing business.

If the Defense expenditure has some spinoffs that help the economy, then it is *not* an expenditure. That is true for any dual-use technology.

So it is not the defense expenditure per se, but the rate of "spinning off" the defense expenditure into profitable ventures decides who is ahead in the race and who is behind.

Just my opinions.

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Postby JCage » 03 Dec 2006 07:56

The news video shows Dr Saraswat saying that a Endo-plus a Exo combined, against a target missile give a 99.8 % Pk (theoretical)

The compere says 4 missiles together (indicating that either he made a mistake or that they edited the tape when Saraswat clarifies the number of missiles).

So, taking the higher figure - 4 Missiles (2 Endo + 2 Exo)- are to give a 99.8% Pk.

Basically, a baseline of what we want to achieve. Note saraswat repeatedly clarifies that its early days yet, and that assistance/ other systems havent been ruled out.

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Postby JCage » 03 Dec 2006 08:01

About defense expenditure, Pak will just import whatever PRC has. Thats a given.

This is the best China has.

http://missilethreat.com/systems/hq-9_china.html

It has significant Russian assistance.

Please dont expect the Paks to immediately back away from an arms race. The Pak elite will sell starving orphans on ebay, if necessary to try and keep up with India. They care two hoots for development vs military debates. As long as the farcical WOT goes on, and the US aid keeps pouring in, they have some leeway in terms of a susbtantial cash fund for such purchases. But in the long run, they cannot compete. But in the short run, they will definitely try for a locally painted equal- equal.

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Postby Alok_N » 03 Dec 2006 08:07

disha wrote:Assuming that 6 PADE ABMs achieve 99% kill, then the probability of each comes to 50%. That is from the above eqn. probability of miss = (0.50)**6 = 1% => prob of kill with 6 = 99%.


there are only 2 variables in this and you have arbitrarily changed both ... 5->6 ... 25% -> 50% ... what gives?

JCage wrote:The news video shows Dr Saraswat saying that a Endo-plus a Exo combined, against a target missile give a 99.8 % Pk (theoretical)


so it would seem that there is correlation between the kill vehicles ... the uncorrelated peobability I calculated above does not apply ...

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Postby SriKumar » 03 Dec 2006 09:30

abhischekcc wrote: Pakistan can of course increase the size, not the quality of its arsenal. But doing requires money. Something pakistan does not have a lot of. Building 20 nukes annually requires an infrastructure worth several billions. Building 100 nukes pr year will require tens of billions of dollars of infrastructure. Where will a 80 billion USD economy find that money?


Summary:
The test is important because it forces our adversaries' to increase expediture by several orders of magnitude to maintain the same threat level to us. We can manipulate this difference in expenditure levels to our advantage by forcing them with either financial ruin or strategic decline. This ability gives us the initiative to damage our opponents' national and military budgets. Even if such ability is limited, we have something that they don't.
Interesting thread. Couple of comments here. Abhisheckcc, if I understand you right, the core of your argument seems to be that for Pakistan or China to reliably penetrate India's missile shield, they would need to drastically increase the number of missiles they have; and doing that would be cost-prohibitive, potentially leading them into financial problems or even bankruptcy.

I am wondering though, how does this really help India? Pakistan knows that they cannot wage a conventional war without getting their butts handed to them; and after Kargil they know they cannot win even a 'semi-conventional', deniable war. So now they send their terrorists across the border or activate their cells to blow up trains/people. Pakistan can very well stay with this 'tactic' whether or not India has a missile shield. I don't see this missile shield stopping Pakistan from doing this. What would India do with a missile shield that it would not do now? (I agree it would deter China from threatening a conventional war and any escalation beyond that).

Another point (not new, obviously), the fact that India will have a ballistic missile shield would only encourage them to look for other ways of delivery- high-tech or low tech. Finally, on the topic of kill ratios, is India willing to take a hit of even 1 (or 2) nukes on a major city? Is this a cost India is willing to bear? Under what circumstances? If war is thrust upon India, perhaps. I think there may be a Laxman rekha India will not cross (unless public opinion changes in the future).
Last edited by SriKumar on 03 Dec 2006 10:45, edited 2 times in total.

Raju

Postby Raju » 03 Dec 2006 10:32

DDM strikes,

Israeli imprint in India's 'indigenous' missile test

Rajat Pandit | TNN
3 Dec, 2006 0010hrs ISTTIMES NEWS NETWORK

NEW DELHI: In yet another indication of the deep but often covert strategic ties between New Delhi and Tel Aviv, it's now clear that there was an Israeli imprint in the incipient ballistic missile defence (BMD) system tested by India last Monday.

The crucial long-range tracking radar (LRTR) used in the Indian "exo-atmospheric" BMD system, which "successfully intercepted" an incoming Prithvi missile on November 27, owes its origins to the Israeli Green Pine early-warning and fire control radar. India had imported two Green Pine radars, which constitute a crucial part of the Arrow-2 BMD system deployed by Israel to counter the threat of Iranian and other missiles, in a hush-hush manner in 2001-2002.

"Other than the basic radar, which we modified to meet our requirements, all the other elements, hardware and software, are homegrown," said DRDO chief controller R&D, V K Saraswat. Since missile defence can take place both inside (endo) or outside (exo) the earth's atmosphere, DRDO will now test an "endo-atmospheric interceptor" in the next four-five months. The "exo-atmospheric" hypersonic interceptor missile tested on Monday destroyed the Prithvi missile at an altitude of 50-km.

The "endo-atmospheric interceptor", in turn, will shoot the "hostile" missiles much closer to earth with a 30-km range. "Our endo-atmospheric interceptor will be similar to the American Patriot-3 AMD system, which has a 15-km range," said Saraswat.

Though the indigenous BMD system is still several years away from becoming operational, as reported by TOI earlier, it will be a "unique" two-tier system once it is ready. The system will have a mix of the two types of interceptor missiles for a kill probability of 99.8%. "A couple of these missile batteries, for instance, should be able to protect Delhi," said Saraswat. "We have made a very good beginning. At least half-a-dozen tests would be required over the next three years before the system can become ready," he added.

DRDO claims to have modified the Green Pine radars, which can detect targets at ranges up to 500-km and can track them at speeds over 3,000 metre per second. The modifications included making the radar capable of tracking intermediate range ballistic missiles.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Isra ... 690102.cms


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