Indian Nuclear News & Discussion - 25 Jul 2007

Sunoor Singh
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Postby Sunoor Singh » 28 Jul 2007 15:23

One major advantage that's possible is the training of graduate students/scientists in civilian installations followed by their transfer to strategic projects.

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Postby JCage » 28 Jul 2007 16:03

Thanks Dileep. While dealing with a 800 pnd Gorilla, ie the US, one has to be always on ones toes. Its a lesson which our strategic community (Esp babus) always forgets. Its an attitude difference- we think that if the paper says "x" then its done and we can live and die by that x. The US regards that paper and the x as a guideline, not necessarily the last word on the subject.

Sunoor,

I'd wager there are safeguards/ criterion imposed on that too. And from the establishment POV, you also want to limit access to people on one side of the fence, not those who straddle both. And frankly, pay matters. We have seen what DRDO/HAL/BEL have suffered due to IT resurgence, but the paymasters in Delhi have ignored it. ISRO funding - all talk apart, is more of a chalta hain business, and again little progress on integrating it with overall strategic goal. For that matter CDS is stillborn.

What I would point out is that this is just the first step. What comes thereafter is the issue. The US will use all and every means to use commercial activities to direct espionage and penetration of Indias nuke establishment whilst insisting on a commercial quid pro quo for the nuke deal. This is but logical and common.
But is India prepared for this? Do we even have the resources to gatekeep?

So the obvious solution is strict delineation between GOI and prvt power. And the equally stark issue there is of retaining talent in DAE when the latter will use the conversion effect to offer paychecks that beggar DAEs.

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Postby vsudhir » 28 Jul 2007 16:10

Indian officials hail nuclear accord with U.S. (IHT)

Somini-speak in the IHT/NYT

But in the end it was the United States that appeared to make more concessions. India stuck fast to its demand to be able to reprocess spent fuel from the reactors on the civilian side, which had raised concerns in Washington about opportunities to produce weapons-grade plutonium for India's military arsenal.


So after a long n loud drumbeat that unkil ended up giving more 'con-sessions', Congress will work itself up into a mood to rectumify (oops, rectify) matters - all in a chex n balances spirit onlee.

P.S.
The game's gotten so predictable its boring now.... The effect a year or BRF can have on a layman's under-standing....... :roll: :eek:

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Postby enqyoobOLD » 28 Jul 2007 16:28

I'd wager there are safeguards/ criterion imposed on that too. And from the establishment POV, you also want to limit access to people on one side of the fence, not those who straddle both.


Sure. The civilian side, where foreigners have access, will see nothing of the other side. And no FUEL or foreign-supplied equipment will go into the other side.

THAT is the separation.

Is any country going to be so stupid as to keep its experts from having access to high-tech stuff going on in the civilian sector? Exactly how is that going to happen? University professor X can come in and work with the civilian reactor, but DAE expert Y will be stopped at the gate? On what basis?

And if that were to happen because of foreign pressure, what's to keep Y from becoming a visiting professor at the same place as X? Will they stop Y at the gate because s(he) has in the past worked for the nation???

Or will they stop Professor X from spending a week at DAE? These are the thoughts that the Indian side had to learn to think, with regard to the Space "separation" arrangement. Same hangups operated then, as in will we be ALLOWED to talk to people on the civilian side?

Hello??? Something happened in 1947, remember? It's called "Independence". You don't have to seek foreign permission to talk to other Indians.

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Postby NRao » 28 Jul 2007 16:58

This is a dated article/interview, but one that helps us understand some of the core issues:

March 01, 2006 :: India 'does not need' nuke deal

By Parsa Venkateshwar Rao Jr, Correspondent

US President George W. Bush's visit to India from today is causing much excitement in the official and media circles.

There is intense speculation about the India-US civilian nuclear cooperation deal being clinched during the visit.

Also, there is much uncertainty because of the acute differences about the separation of the civil and military nuclear facilities.

For the first time, many scientists associated with nuclear research in the country have openly opposed the deal, and the American pressure to place the fast breeder reactor (FBR) to be made open to international inspections.

It is not yet clear whether nuclear deal will be clinched, but the dissenting voices are clearer than ever before. In an exclusive interview with Gulf News, former chairman of the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board A. Gopalakrishnan, explained the loopholes in the deal.

Excerpts from the interview:


Gulf News: Is this the first time that there is a clear division between the nuclear establishment and the political establishment over the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal?
Gopalakrishnan: Yes, it is. The July 16, 2005 agreement signed by Manmohan Singh and George W. Bush is not the problem. The problems arose when the US began to demand more than what is in the agreement.

According to the July agreement, it was left to India to separate the civilian and nuclear facilities, and to place the civilian facilities under international safeguards over a phased period. Due to pressure from the US Congressmen, officials of the Bush Administration asked for a list of the facilities to be separated, and they began to make the demand to include what has been left out.


Does India need this civilian nuclear cooperation pact with US?
India does not need it. The Indian argument that it is necessary to ensure our energy security is so much hogwash. If energy security is the prime concern, then we should be paying more attention to the coal reserves and to the hydro-electric potential.

It is the Americans who have been pressurising India to sign the deal. The Americans have not built new reactors for more than 30 years now. India and China offer an attractive market for the US companies which sell civilian nuclear technology.


Why is Indian political establishment so enamoured of this deal?
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is an economist, and he looks at issues from the point of view of trade. And then the Americans are offering the political carrot of supporting India's bid to be a permanent member of the UN Security Council if it were to sign the nuclear deal.


There is an argument from the lobby favouring the agreement that India desperately needs to sign this deal because the failure to do so would force us to close the Trombay reactors due to shortage of fuel. What is the real picture?
That is a bogey. The two reactors in Trombay produce about 300 megwatts of electricity. And they have completed nearly 27 years of their 42 years life. It does not matter if we have to close them down because we have other reactors generating power.


How do you rate the status and standard of nuclear research in India? Is it world class?
Ever since the sanctions imposed by the US after the 1974 Pokhran test, Indian nuclear scientists had to find their own way. The reason was that we had to work as pioneers because technology and know-how was completely blocked. But Indian scientists have overcome all the hurdles.

Today we have got some of the best nuclear engineering courses in the world, which are as good as those in Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Caltech. I can say this with confidence because I had been in the US myself and seen the situation.

As a matter of fact, the 1974 sanctions were a blessing for Indian nuclear and space establishment. We have attained self-reliance. And I can tell you that even if US imposes sanctions against Iran, the Iranians will achieve their goal.


Why is then the success of the Indian nuclear and space scientists a secret?
The scientists are shy and they are not used to beating their own drum.


Do you think that the scientists from the nuclear establishment who moved into the government have betrayed the cause?
I would say that once the senior nuclear scientists moved into the advisory role in the government, they began to compromise. They were told by the bureaucrats about the compulsions of trade and of international relations.


How will the India-US talks on the nuclear deal play out?
I think the Americans will recognise the Indian compulsions, and they will stick to the July agreement.

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Postby JCage » 28 Jul 2007 17:05

Is any country going to be so stupid as to keep its experts from having access to high-tech stuff going on in the civilian sector? Exactly how is that going to happen? University professor X can come in and work with the civilian reactor, but DAE expert Y will be stopped at the gate? On what basis?


They may have to even if we can ignore all the odious clauses that are likely to be in the paperwork about not letting blah blah work on both bums and NE etc etc..and here is why (imho):

Hello??? Something happened in 1947, remember? It's called "Independence". You don't have to seek foreign permission to talk to other Indians.


Thats all very well, but if you see the stupidity in holding to the letter of the law, in the manner in which India operates, you will often wonder how long it will take for India to truly become "free".

Coming to the above:
I am reasonably sure- given the past nature of things, that the US will seek to use this agreement to penetrate DAE etc- there will be a scandal, and then the babus will do a CYA analysis and impose maximal separation between the civil-DAE fence.
This is the manner in which the US used the much vaunted IT security operation.

Fact of life is that unless GOI wakes up and gives its scientists and staff world class renumeration, whilst expecting miracles out of them on account of "patriotism" whilst the politicians and their chosen babus work under the table miracles....Indias R&D establishment will remain vulnerable.

As a cynic, I am quite sure that the above will be the way of things, while DAE et al become the "bakra" as compared to the efficient private sector and similar BS, similar to the manner in which DRDO et al have been left to fend for themselves whilst it is the GOI that controls the purse strings and can hobble the organization.

All this freedom stuff is for the history books, unfortunately fact is that in India, there is a significant group of people who regard Indian nationalism or its defence of its national interests as unecessary and uncivilized and would gladly sign away these items as they are "albatrosses around Indias neck" and they will be egged on by the likes of Shekhar Gupta.

Lets come to the issue of separation: even with the migration of people and ideas, the separation of DRDO and ISRO and replication of facilities has been disastrous in several ways, especially with regards to strategic problems. As always, in India, it has even led to the emergence of a class which has started believing the claptrap that was originally put out for psyops reasons as being the truth- that ISRO only stands for peace and humanity and it would be a travesty to involve it in defence. I can quote several examples of how this has negatively impacted Indian defence capability. DAE has been a perfect example of where these stupid artificial lines were not drawn, where one organization managed optimally with what it could, but this deal has the potential to again draw stilted lines between the "haves" and "havenots". And brilliant PMs like MMS will then turn up at DAE conferences, tell them to "gird their belts" and deliver without delay and similar BS, whilst deliberately ignoring their pay and other constraints.

I fully admit I am being cynical. But nothing that I have seen so far in how our political parties operate and suborn GOI via their pet babus makes me believe otherwise. The greatest thing is to operate via a huge PR campaign and deliver a fait accompli which nobody else can reverse.

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Postby ShauryaT » 28 Jul 2007 17:24

JCage wrote:Thats all very well, but if you see the stupidity in holding to the letter of the law, in the manner in which India operates, you will often wonder how long it will take for India to truly become "free".
Moreover, that "stupidity" is actually codified in the Indian constitution as article 51, which states that India shall adhere to all its international treaties and agreements. The only country in the world with such a clause -- Thank our constitution forefathers for that.

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Postby Calvin » 28 Jul 2007 17:31

Folks - the existing military reactors are more than sufficient for the strategic program. The agreement does not prevent us from building new reactors, breeders or otherwise, if we use domestic "unsafeguarded" fuel.

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Postby JCage » 28 Jul 2007 17:50

Shaurya,

Hilarious. And why am I not surprised? A nation built on babugiri thinks that all others will be likewise and paperwork and living by paper rules, is the be-all.


Calvin wrote:Folks - the existing military reactors are more than sufficient for the strategic program. The agreement does not prevent us from building new reactors, breeders or otherwise, if we use domestic "unsafeguarded" fuel.


And I do wonder how future nuclear tests will be regarded as.

Any future tests will also have to run the "mile" of now cutting off these expensive reactors from fuel supplies and making them white elephants.

The smart thing to do would be to have a behind the doors agreement with russia or any other power, agreeable- that would not cut off fuel at times of tests.

But in CAG run India, creating a strategic reserve of nuke fuel, or for that matter engaging in long term planning like the above seems unlikely at best.

Limiting Indias ability to test, by linking it to huge economic concerns, is a way of limited CRE.

Not to mention the manpower and espionage issues mentioned prior.

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Postby NRao » 28 Jul 2007 18:12

The problem is within India - that there is fragmentation.

It is true that this deal will not prohibit India from building more military reactors. But that argument is a fig leaf. Because of the situation India is in - and it is a situation no other nation is in, not even the US - India needs a lot more leeway in decision making. Not only does India not have that leeway, but is held hostage. From that PoV, this deal has not helped India at all. (It has helped from an econ and trade PoV.)

IMHO, it is up to India. CAG or no CAG, if India has to test and still make the world heel, she can do it. Why do Indian leaders consider themselves second class I do not know.

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Postby Calvin » 28 Jul 2007 18:14

The question is whether an energy constrained India will ever be able to develop into a global power, and in that context, if this agreement allows India to do so - with the constraint that should India test again, it would have to obtain fuel from a third party source.

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Postby NRao » 28 Jul 2007 18:27

Calvin wrote:The question is whether an energy constrained India will ever be able to develop into a global power, and in that context, if this agreement allows India to do so - with the constraint that should India test again, it would have to obtain fuel from a third party source.


Econ power or a nuclear power?

The prior is OK.

The latter as talk is allowed as long as the $$ flow to the right pockets. The latter as action is not allowed under any circumstances - even if TSP threatens.

Also, I do not think Russia would have been of any help. Check out history, even they would let the dogs go after India.

It is us.

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Postby ShauryaT » 28 Jul 2007 18:35

Calvin wrote:Folks - the existing military reactors are more than sufficient for the strategic program. The agreement does not prevent us from building new reactors, breeders or otherwise, if we use domestic "unsafeguarded" fuel.


Sufficient or not is in the view of the one making policy, a policy that enjoys broad consensus. If AK is asked, does India have enough WgPU to make 200 TN weapons by 2012, AK would probably say - yes.

Turn the question around and ask, if India has enough WgPu to match China - let us say for a 1000 TN weapons - the answer (assuming Arun_S theory is not true and the reported figure of Cirrus producing a 3rd of our fissile material is true) probably is a firm no.

Now, WgPu with more reactors is not something you produce overnight (2-3 years) but an FMCT can come in that short time frame, especially with the pressure points of this deal, prohibiting India from such a venture of producing more PHWR or FBR in the non civilian domain, in the future.

Admittedly, I am approaching the MAD theory of a nuclear weapons war, a theory, which the super powers put into practice and something China, is probably, either ready or getting ready for. Although MAD in the Indian context seems unlikely in today's context, who knows, what it will be 20 years from now. We need maximum flexibility in capability, as we cannot control some one's intent.

While some say, we will do what we want 20 years from now, because we will be more powerful, that statement has to be measured against, our past practice, our constitution and laws and most important, our attitude.

This deal may make sense today, but if the parameters change in 20 years, will India change in a proactive manner fast enough in the strategic domain, or as usual, will it wait for a knife to be at its throat, before the elephant moves.

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Postby Calvin » 28 Jul 2007 18:41

ShauryaT: It may be useful to check the assumption that it is necessary to match warheads with warheads.

These are asymmetric weapons. A single effectively deliverable North Korean warhead will deter 10,000 US warheads. Equally, China needs/needed as many weapons due to the inaccuracy of their weapons. Indian weapons are more accurate and therefore do not need parity of weapon count, all we need is parity or superiority of WILL.

Unless we check our assumptions, we can easily get into fallacious arguments.

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Postby JCage » 28 Jul 2007 18:45

Calvin states:

Calvin wrote:ShauryaT: It may be useful to check the assumption


followed by:

Equally, China needs/needed as many weapons due to the inaccuracy of their weapons.


...

which of course needs to be tempered by:

Unless we check our assumptions, we can easily get into fallacious arguments.


..what makes you believe that the PRCs nuke deterrent is not accurate?

This is a stretch. They have spent far more in acquiring technology than India and even recruited Russians galore. Why would their guidance technology be lagging?

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Postby ShauryaT » 28 Jul 2007 18:47

Calvin wrote:ShauryaT: Unless we check our assumptions, we can easily get into fallacious arguments.
The last time, I checked, the assumptions of one actually practicing MAD theory, were doing so, on the basis of Parity (US:Russia). I am on fairly good ground here and what is fallacious is your comparision with N. Korea for MAD theory. If your, argument is that MAD is not required, that is a separate theory - not put into practice by the major nuclear super powers.

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Postby Gerard » 28 Jul 2007 18:54

A couple of years ago ramana did a rough estimate of the number of warheads that India needed.

I think we should revisit that discussion (with allowances for future Chinese ABMs and warhead fratricide).

How many targets in China? The ten largest Chinese cities? Fifteen perhaps? How many warheads per city?

What percentage of the warhead pits in storage/remanufacture?

Losses in machining? How much Pu in stockpile?

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Postby John Snow » 28 Jul 2007 18:59

We need 850 warheads of all (assorted) kinds to take care of any situation.

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Postby rgsrini » 28 Jul 2007 19:03

The last time, I checked, the assumptions of one actually practicing MAD theory


I doubt that... I think our policy has always been making it prohibitively expensive for other nuclear powers to initiate a nuclear war with India. Our priority has always been Assured survivable second strike capability based on triad off delivery systems. What is the point of having 1000s of nuclear weapons and bottling up billions of dollars in upkeap and maitenance, when we can have an effective deterence and more with a few hundred war heads or less.

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Postby Calvin » 28 Jul 2007 19:11

JCage - The reason that the chinese built up such a huge arsenal was because their missile technology was awful until the mid 1990s. Their MT class weapons at >2km (which is *why* they had to be MT class). Their newer ones are estimated to have CEP in the 0.5km range.

http://www.rand.org/pubs/conf_proceedin ... .chap9.pdf

Deterring a democratic open society is easier than deterring an authoritarian closed society. For open societies, it is generally assumed that successfully delivering a *single* thermonuclear weapon on a single city is sufficiently deterring. For closed societies, the number has to be larger.

For China, we probably need to effectively hit 5 cities. If there is a 50% chance that the missiles are inaccurate, that means we need 10 weapons. If there is another 50% chance that the weapons don't get off the ground, that brings us to 20 weapons. Since we have an NFU policy, we have to account for possible destruction of our arsenal in a first strike. Assuming that a first strike wipes out 50% of our arsenal, we will need 40 weapons. Now, if we assume that cities are going to set up TMD, that can take out 80% of all weapons, we will need 5X as many weapons. This brings us to 200 weapons. We are still a long way from 800. And likely we don't have to hit 5 cities in China.

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Postby ShauryaT » 28 Jul 2007 19:23

There was an old IDSA report by various Indian "experts" on the issue of the number of warheads needed and the answer as usual was a range between 20 and 800, depending on the view of the expert.

My point is, we do not know, how much will we need in the future, as we do not know, who are enemies are likely to be in the long term.

Hence, our policy should demand maximum flexibility, withing the context of CMND, this deal and the presuming FMCT will come into play or these policies need to be revisited, for there is a real risk of India, for a long time, if not forever, being relegated to a second grade power.

That status maybe OK for some, 50 years from now, but it is my view that this status is not compatible with Indian ambitions.

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Postby ShauryaT » 28 Jul 2007 19:27

rgsrini wrote:
The last time, I checked, the assumptions of one actually practicing MAD theory


I doubt that... I think our policy has always been making it prohibitively expensive for other nuclear powers to initiate a nuclear war with India. Our priority has always been Assured survivable second strike capability based on triad off delivery systems. What is the point of having 1000s of nuclear weapons and bottling up billions of dollars in upkeap and maitenance, when we can have an effective deterence and more with a few hundred war heads or less.
Who is talking about actually building these weapons today or in the future? It is about having that capability.

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Postby Calvin » 28 Jul 2007 19:36

Estimating 5 kg/WGP per weapon, including scrap etc, India presently produces 30 - 40 kg (6 - 8 weapons per year). By 2010, that number is estimated to rise to 150 kg per year (30 weapons per year).

http://www.princeton.edu/~aglaser/talk2 ... nceton.pdf

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Postby John Snow » 28 Jul 2007 19:43

200 for PRC alone, but to check mate others you have to increase the count correspondingly which comes to 850

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Postby rgsrini » 28 Jul 2007 19:53

Who is talking about actually building these weapons today or in the future? It is about having that capability.


If we need that capability in the future, there is nothing stopping us from doing it in the future. Of course there is some cost associated with it due to the cancellation of 'nuclear deal'. May be the cost is acceptable to us.

so far there is nothing in this deal that suggests that our Babus have capitulated and sacrificed the interests of our country. In fact, it appears that they have done a good considered balancing act between our strategic military requirements on one side and energy security, access to technology etc on the other.

Will this assure our security for ions to come?... probably not and no one can be sure what our threat is going to be in the future. We don't even know how the threat will manifest itself or if we would need a nuclear weapon to defend against it. As an example, US with all its 1000s of nuclear war head was unable to prevent 9/11.

Given the current situation, with the information available and our current perspective of the future did we make a right decision in entering into this deal. I certainly think so as it appears that the people in the know appears to have debated it extensively, weighed down all the pros and cons and come to this decision.

Besides, I cannot think of any situation when our babus have compromised India's security under any situation. Things might have moved under covers for a while, but were never brought to a complete halt even under dire situations.

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Postby ramana » 28 Jul 2007 20:05

Go back to my What Next article in BRM. I took care of all contingencies. The deal reduces the situation to medium level. That is what has happened.

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Postby Cain Marko » 28 Jul 2007 20:06

Hmm, Calvin makes a reasonable point: India doesn't need parity in numbers to effectively deter the Dragon. To match them warhead for warhead will just lead to a pointless race with the Pukes trying to catch up using the same kind of logic (parity). Considering that Pak is an unstable state with a distinct proclivity to lob a nuke or two in India, the thought of it trying to mass produce nukes is not very comforting.

At the same time, JC comes up with another brilliant insight - the danger of brain drain in DAE, not to mention the danger of espionage via U.S. agents. As far as loss of talent is concerned, I'm afraid this was bound to happen - only way this can change is if the GOI gets its head out of it's behind and starts upgrading payscales and such for employees. (apart from doling out some sort of punitive measures for transgressors).

Overall, is the deal a great thing for India? once again we have a mixed bag - some good, some bad. It can be made really good use of if effective measures are taken to prevent espionage in critical areas (hopeless situation) and it could really hurt if critical information is compromised. Actually, a nice fat nuke test is the best thing India could do after the deal - thereby ensuring the departure of the U.S. and its asscciated peeping tom agents. :twisted: By that time alternative routes for fuel will already be established and countries like France and Russia won't give a damn so supplies will be assured. JMT

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Postby Arun_S » 28 Jul 2007 20:07

Calvin wrote:JCage - The reason that the chinese built up such a huge arsenal was because their missile technology was awful until the mid 1990s. Their MT class weapons at >2km (which is *why* they had to be MT class). Their newer ones are estimated to have CEP in the 0.5km range.

http://www.rand.org/pubs/conf_proceedin ... .chap9.pdf

Deterring a democratic open society is easier than deterring an authoritarian closed society. For open societies, it is generally assumed that successfully delivering a *single* thermonuclear weapon on a single city is sufficiently deterring. For closed societies, the number has to be larger.

For China, we probably need to effectively hit 5 cities. If there is a 50% chance that the missiles are inaccurate, that means we need 10 weapons. If there is another 50% chance that the weapons don't get off the ground, that brings us to 20 weapons. Since we have an NFU policy, we have to account for possible destruction of our arsenal in a first strike. Assuming that a first strike wipes out 50% of our arsenal, we will need 40 weapons. Now, if we assume that cities are going to set up TMD, that can take out 80% of all weapons, we will need 5X as many weapons. This brings us to 200 weapons. We are still a long way from 800. And likely we don't have to hit 5 cities in China.

And to arm the triad (3) to be able to reliably deliver the punch independently, multiply that by 3. That number becomes ~600. Add to that some percentage will be in refurbishment and to maintain residual reserve for the day-after or possibility of two simultaneous challengers that need be deterred.

It is a fallacy to assume a Chinese city will be destroyed by one successful nuclear weapon of (~200Kt yield). IMHO (also I compared notes with recognized Indian strategists) 3/city are required. {This paragraph added later)

In my consideration (private assessment) India requires ~800 weapons for credible deterrence.
Last edited by Arun_S on 28 Jul 2007 20:22, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Mort Walker » 28 Jul 2007 20:18

Here is the link to Ramana's "What's Next" article in BRM from Nov-Dec 1999:

http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/MONITOR/ISSUE2-3/ramana.html

What we need to understand is that although politically the atomic bomb is seen as the doomsday device and end-of-civilization, it is nothing of the sort and is only a high yield explosive from the military point of view. The question is, what is the doctrine of use? From the military point of view you want to destroy CCC, high-value strategic targets and tactical threats. The last thing you want in a war is to start off launching city busters as its not going to deter any real adversary.

As India declared NFU and entered in to a nuclear deal with the US, it can be concluded that it has given up the option to test nuclear weapons. Thus, nuclear weapons for India are more political weapons and less of military use.

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Postby Mort Walker » 28 Jul 2007 20:20

Arun,

The "day-after" scenario comes first for India as it has declared NFU.

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Postby NRao » 28 Jul 2007 20:27

For those who thought this a serious deal, here is the first disagreement between the to be signatories of this deal.

Nuke test will spike deal: US

[quote]
Washington/New Delhi, PTI & DHNS:

Washingtons assertion came hours after New Delhi claimed that it had got a good deal and all commitments made by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Parliament are fully and totally taken care of.

The United States on Friday said it could seek return of atomic technology and fuel if India conducts a nuclear test, hours after New Delhi insisted there was nothing in last week’s 123 agreement reached in Washington on the issue. {reminds me of SD requesting Indian embassy to remove an over zealous post on their web site}

Washington’s assertion came hours after New Delhi claimed that it had got a “goodâ€
Last edited by NRao on 28 Jul 2007 20:31, edited 2 times in total.

Arun_S
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Postby Arun_S » 28 Jul 2007 20:27

I meant the "day-after" India exercised the 600 weapons option in Calvin's scenario.

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Postby Cain Marko » 28 Jul 2007 20:36

rgsrini wrote:If we need that capability in the future, there is nothing stopping us from doing it in the future. Of course there is some cost associated with it due to the cancellation of 'nuclear deal'. May be the cost is acceptable to us.

so far there is nothing in this deal that suggests that our Babus have capitulated and sacrificed the interests of our country. In fact, it appears that they have done a good considered balancing act between our strategic military requirements on one side and energy security, access to technology etc on the other.

Will this assure our security for ions to come?... probably not and no one can be sure what our threat is going to be in the future. We don't even know how the threat will manifest itself or if we would need a nuclear weapon to defend against it. As an example, US with all its 1000s of nuclear war head was unable to prevent 9/11.

Given the current situation, with the information available and our current perspective of the future did we make a right decision in entering into this deal. I certainly think so as it appears that the people in the know appears to have debated it extensively, weighed down all the pros and cons and come to this decision.

Lets hope so, only time will tell. its my gut feeling that an alliance with the Amrikis is a step in the right direction, however, the fast pace at which this is occuring is a matter of concern IMHO.
Besides, I cannot think of any situation when our babus have compromised India's security under any situation. Things might have moved under covers for a while, but were never brought to a complete halt even under dire situations.

What of babus and police officers taking bribes to allow dawood types to explode bums in bumbai? This HUGE, topheavy babudom that India carries is more of a burden than an asset. Among other things, it ensures delays in defence acquisitions and thereby undermines security of the nation. Trying to present this newkiller deal as one of their glorious moments is at best clutching at straws.

Regards,
CM

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Postby JCage » 28 Jul 2007 20:41

Calvin wrote:JCage - The reason that the chinese built up such a huge arsenal was because their missile technology was awful until the mid 1990s. Their MT class weapons at >2km (which is *why* they had to be MT class). Their newer ones are estimated to have CEP in the 0.5km range.


Calvin, first, thank you for the reference. Your post led me to believe that you were making an off the cuff statement, hence my query.

But the other reason for my statement was that its been a decade since the mid 90's and the PRC has begged, borrowed and stolen tech like nobodys business.

Please take a holistic view of their entire missile development program. They are fielding a variety of AShMs, LACMs, ICBMs, IRBMs, SRBMs and show no signs of slowing down. This definitely means that they have crossed the threshold of operationalizing compact subsystems for guidance, navigation and terminal acquisition (radar and electrooptical seekers), not to mention the all important propulsion.

I for one, would consider western references (today) to judge the PRC development program as but one cog of a wheel. IMHO, their guidance should be sufficiently accurate to achieve mid-80's western ability in terms of CEP etc, which is sufficient to hurt us.

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Postby Sanjay M » 28 Jul 2007 21:00

NRao wrote:For those who thought this a serious deal, here is the first disagreement between the to be signatories of this deal.

Nuke test will spike deal: US



India will accept it.

The US Congress will accept it.

The US is where it always was.

On the Indian side "it" will only add more confusion. More importantly, I do not think current Indian leadership will have the guts to take action with this deal in place as compared to when there was no deal.


Again, this only reminds me of Oslo "peace process" where both sides are making totally opposite interpretations. It seems as if negotiations carried out amongst over-eager desperate parties then inevitably manage to leapfrog reality.

But you can't leapfrog reality. Temporarily turning a blind eye to it won't make it go away. China and Pak will see the obvious flat in this opposing-interpretations situation, and they will seek to bring it to a head.

What happens when China or its proxy NKorea proliferates more N-tech to Pak, then what do we do? Become the fallguy in this contradictory-interpretation game by not responding with our own test?

Congress Party is too desperate for re-election and too full of scheming and stuntsmanship to do a good job on this issue.

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Postby rgsrini » 28 Jul 2007 21:13

What of babus and police officers taking bribes to allow dawood types to explode bums in bumbai

I have no doubt that we have some babus in our midst who are thugs, common criminals and some who are more than willing to support maoists, J&K terroists, LTTE even after the assasination of our prime minister (Vaiko) or worse they may even lob a bomb on their own against their country for the right price. These are threats that we are most vulnerable at present, that has the potential to bring our economic activity to its knees. The enemy is aware of it and is using it effectively for the past many years and will continue to do so in the future.

There have been cases of kickbacks and counter kickbacks even in major military deals and will continue to be there in the future. I am aware that the babus are not going to grow a conscience over a weekend.

However, our core strategic needs such as nuclear weaponization or missile delivery systems have not been compromised so far in a major way so that it cripples India from defending itself. There is no evidence to believe that the current lot of babus in power will compromise it. The babus including the current lot will continue to take care of themselves, while taking care of the country and the common man.


Added later...
Trying to present this newkiller deal as one of their glorious moments is at best clutching at straws.

Politicians are politicians. One side will sell it as the best thing ever to happen to India since its independence. The other side will sell it as if we have lost our independence. It is up to the individuals to analyze and understand the details, if they care. Or seek forums such as BR to see what fellow Indians and well wishers, think about the deal and what are they most concerned about.

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Postby Manav » 28 Jul 2007 21:40

NRao wrote:For those who thought this a serious deal, here is the first disagreement between the to be signatories of this deal.

India will accept it.

The US Congress will accept it.

The US is where it always was.

On the Indian side "it" will only add more confusion. More importantly, I do not think current Indian leadership will have the guts to take action with this deal in place as compared to when there was no deal.


This is precisely what the busdriver told me and which I reported here some time back. In fact in my most recent meeting with him, according to him, privately, the scientists are fuming...I asked about AK and the soundbytes that came from him in the wake of the agreement. He smiled and referred me to the internal political condition that the current govt. needs to address/ is addressing. AK, according to this guy, has also been 'frozen' in that he has been made complicit in the govt's decisions despite his disagreement - somewhat like being co-opted.

Note: Usual caveats apply.

Cheers!

Edit: Nrao's post below again corroborates what this guy said. The Americans have not given anything...but I guess the 'gurus' here know more than I do.
Last edited by Manav on 28 Jul 2007 21:46, edited 1 time in total.

NRao
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Postby NRao » 28 Jul 2007 21:40

Oh boy. The deal is not even signed and within hours the price of testing has already gone up!!!! Nuclear inflation.

India can test, but at a very high price: US daily

Indo-Asian News Service
Washington, July 28, 2007
First Published: 19:58 IST(28/7/2007)
Last Updated: 22:24 IST(28/7/2007)

Under the India-US civil nuclear deal, Washington cannot guarantee that India will refrain from testing a nuclear weapon but it would pay a very high price if it did, says a US daily.

"The whole system is stacked against testing," an unnamed "senior administration official familiar with negotiations" was cited as saying by the Washington Post on Saturday.

"The American president would have the right to ask for return of any technology. That's a huge penalty to pay. India would also have to think about the reaction from the Europeans and other suppliers of nuclear technology," the official added.

In a 'News Analysis' the influential New York Times too suggested that in its nuclear deal with India, Washington appeared to have made more concessions.

"The agreement, which was forged during five rounds of negotiations, requires India to separate its civilian nuclear power reactors and open them to international inspections. But in the end it was the United States that appeared to make more concessions," it said.

"India stuck fast to its demand to be able to reprocess spent fuel from the reactors on the civilian side, which had raised concerns in Washington about opportunities to produce weapons-grade plutonium for India's military arsenal," it said.

"At the very least, the Bush administration should not make it easier for New Delhi to resume nuclear testing and to produce fissile material for nuclear weapons," the daily said citing Michael Krepon, co-founder of the Washington-based Henry L Stimson Centre.

Some critics of the deal, led by Edward J Markey, a Democrat member of US House of Representatives, have vowed to try to defeat it, the Times said. "But it appears unlikely that they will muster the votes, especially in an election year when Indian-Americans are courted by both parties."

Other critics cited by the Washington Post suggest the deal sets a bad example because India will win access to US technology without complying with the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which allows cooperation on nuclear energy only with those countries that pledge not to develop nuclear weapons.

"This deal is a complete capitulation on existing US laws..." said Joseph Cirincione, a non-proliferation expert with the Centre for American Progress cited by the Post.

"It helps India reprocess fuel from a reactor to produce plutonium, which could be used in bombs, and it dilutes strict conditions that Congress had placed on aid should India test a nuclear weapon again. It's not exactly a green light for expanding India's nuclear weapons programme, but it's at least a yellow."

Daryl G Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, refuted US claims that the deal will bring India into the nuclear mainstream, the Post said.

"We're giving India rights and privileges not afforded by other non-nuclear states, and we're not holding India to the same standards expected of a nuclear weapons state," he was quoted as saying.

Howard L Berman, a senior Democratic member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said he and several lawmakers were "disturbed" by the deal.

"We have said, 'You're not going to get anything if you resume nuclear testing.' But now we're making an agreement that India will get a fuel supply even if it resumes testing."

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Postby NRao » 28 Jul 2007 21:44

July 28, 2007 :: U.S. and India Finalize Controversial Nuclear Trade Pact

U.S. and India Finalize Controversial Nuclear Trade Pact

By Robin Wright and Emily Wax
Washington Post Staff Writers
Saturday, July 28, 2007; Page A14

After two years of controversial negotiations, the United States and India yesterday announced a deal on peaceful nuclear cooperation that allows trade in nuclear reactors, technology and fuel, permits India to reprocess nuclear fuel and opens the way for the United States to become a "reliable" supplier for India's energy program.

"This is perhaps the single most important initiative that India and the United States have agreed to in the 60 years of our relationship," said R. Nicholas Burns, undersecretary of state for political affairs, in announcing the deal. It is also a boost to an administration struggling with diplomatic initiatives in the Middle East, Africa, Russia and other parts of the world.

The deal could foster greater strategic cooperation between the two nations and open up markets for U.S. energy and defense industries. The so-called 123 agreement still faces significant hurdles, however, notably in Congress, which must approve the accord. Critics say the deal sets a bad example because India will win access to U.S. technology without complying with the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which allows cooperation on nuclear energy only when countries pledge not to develop nuclear weapons.

"This deal is a complete capitulation on existing U.S. laws . . ." said Joseph Cirincione, a nonproliferation expert with the Center for American Progress. "It helps India reprocess fuel from a reactor to produce plutonium, which could be used in bombs, and it dilutes strict conditions that Congress had placed on aid should India test a nuclear weapon again. It's not exactly a green light for expanding India's nuclear weapons program, but it's at least a yellow."

The deal includes cooperation on civil nuclear research and development, allows India to reprocess nuclear fuel at a new national facility that will operate under International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards and approves India's right to create a strategic fuel reserve.

"Civil nuclear cooperation between the United States and India will offer enormous strategic and economic benefits to both countries, including enhanced energy security, a more environmentally friendly energy source, greater economic opportunities and more robust nonproliferation efforts," Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Indian External Affairs Minister Shri Pranab Mukherjee said in a statement.

President Bush said the deal reflects the deepening partnership with India and pledged to work with Congress on ratification.

Daryl G. Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, refuted U.S. claims that the deal will bring India into the nuclear mainstream. "We're giving India rights and privileges not afforded other nonnuclear states, and we're not holding India to the same standards expected of a nuclear weapons state," he said.

A senior administration official familiar with negotiations conceded that the United States cannot guarantee that India will refrain from testing a nuclear weapon but said that New Delhi would pay a very high price if it did. "The whole system is stacked against testing. The American president would have the right to ask for return of any technology. That's a huge penalty to pay. India would also have to think about the reaction from the Europeans and other suppliers of nuclear technology."

Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) charged that the White House has abandoned its own long-standing position. "In the past, the president has said, correctly, that reprocessing and enrichment are not necessary for the peaceful use of nuclear energy. But now he has apparently reversed course and decided to allow India to reprocess all U.S.-origin fuel." Markey, co-chairman of the House's Bipartisan Task Force on Nonproliferation, was one of 23 members of the House who wrote the White House Wednesday warning that any deal with India could not circumvent U.S. laws.

Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-Calif.), a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said he and several lawmakers were "disturbed" by the deal. "We have said, 'You're not going to get anything if you resume nuclear testing.' But now we're making an agreement that India will get a fuel supply even if it resumes testing."

In New Delhi, government officials have consistently said that they will not knuckle under to U.S. efforts to curtail India's nuclear arsenal. Nearly every week, newspapers run fiery editorials about the country's need to defend its national interests, often pointing toward neighboring Pakistan, also a nuclear power.

India's tough stance during negotiations reflects its growing confidence in world affairs, a contrast from the days it was among the world's poorest and most politically marginalized countries. "Let India keep its bombs," newspaper headlines have declared.

The nuclear deal was approved by India's cabinet Wednesday, but the country's biggest political parties have refused to endorse the agreement in parliament until they read the fine print, which so far has not been publicly disclosed.

"We assure everyone there is nothing to stop India from carrying out further nuclear tests," M.K. Narayanan, India's national security adviser, said on Indian television. "Our right to test did not come into this at all. And that's key."

The nuclear deal is being widely portrayed on the subcontinent as yet another step in warming relations between the United States and India, once a staunch ally of Russia during the last decades of the Cold War and an economic backwater. Before the pact can come to a vote in Congress, however, India must reach agreement with the IAEA on inspections and safeguards and win approval from the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group.

Wax reported from New Delhi.

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Postby Rangudu » 28 Jul 2007 21:58

Let's assume this deal were not there. Does anyone think that the consequences of an Indian n-test is going to be sweet and honey?

It does not matter what laws or treaties exist. The consequences of India's n-test is always going to be more affected by India's political relationship with the US and other powers thant it is by "rules."


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