Mulling the First Nuclear Attack (Revelation 8)

Musharraf mulled N-attack against India’

Orissa Post
‘Musharraf mulled N-attack against India’ Dubai, July 27: Pakistan’s former military dictator Gen Pervez Musharraf says he mulled the use of nuclear weapons against India amid tensions following the 2001 terror attack on the Indian Parliament, but decided against doing so out of fear of retaliation, according to a media report.
Musharraf, 73, also recalled that he had many sleepless nights, asking himself whether he would or could deploy nuclear weapons, the Japanese daily ‘Mainichi Shimbun’ said The former President disclosed that amid tensions between India and Pakistan following the 2001 terrorist attack on the Indian Parliament, he contemplated the use of nuclear weapons, but decided against doing so out of fear of retaliation.
“When tensions were high in 2002, there was a “danger when (the) nuclear threshold could have been crossed,” the paper quoted Musharraf as saying.
At the time, Musharraf had publicly said that he would not rule out the possibility of using nuclear weapons.
Musharraf also said, however, that at the time, neither India nor Pakistan had nuclear warheads on their missiles, so it would have taken one to two days to make them launch-ready.
Asked whether he had ordered that missiles be equipped with nuclear warheads and put into firing position, he said, “We didn’t do that and we don’t think India also did that, thank God” – pointing, perhaps, to a fear of retaliation, the paper reported.
The two countries subsequently avoided an all-out clash and tensions subsided. The then army chief Musharraf ousted the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in a coup in October 1999. The army general served as president from 2001 to 2008. Musharraf has been living in Dubai since last year when he was allowed to leave Pakistan on pretext of medical treatment. He has been charged with involvement in the murder of the former two-time Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 2007.

India May Accelerate Tensions with Pakistan

WASHINGTON: India is moving towards isolating Pakistan diplomatically and is considering punitive actions against Islamabad for its support to cross-border terrorism, a top American defence intelligence chief has told lawmakers, reports NDTV.“India has sought and continues to move to isolate Pakistan diplomatically and is considering punitive options to raise the cost to Islamabad for its alleged support to cross-border terrorism,” Lt Gen Vincent Stewart, Director, Defense Intelligence Agency told members of the powerful Senate Armed Services Committee during a Congressional hearing on worldwide threats. His statement came a day after Indian Army launched “punitive fire assaults” on Pakistani positions across the Line of Control. India, he said, is modernising its military to better posture itself to defend New Delhi’s interests in the broader Indian Ocean region and reinforce its diplomatic and economic outreach across Asia.
Bilateral relations between India and Pakistan worsened following several terrorist attacks in India, he said.“Continued threat of high-level terror attacks in India, violence in Jammu and Kashmir and bilateral diplomatic recriminations will further strain India-Pakistan ties in 2017,” he said.
Following a terrorist attack on an army base in Jammu and Kashmir last September, New Delhi conducted a highly publicised operation against terrorists across the Line of Control, he added.
“In 2016, Indian and Pakistani forces exchanged some of the heaviest fire in years along the Line of Control in Kashmir, and each expelled a number of the other’s diplomats amid growing tension,” Lt Gen Stewart said.
He also told lawmakers that in 2017, Islamabad is likely to slowly shift from traditional counterinsurgency operations along Pakistan’s western border to more counter-terrorism and paramilitary operations throughout the country.
Noting that Pakistan’s nuclear stockpile continues to grow, Lt Gen Stewart said the US is concerned that this growth, as well as an evolving doctrine and inherent security issues associated with Pakistan’s developing tactical nuclear weapons, presents an enduring risk. “Islamabad is taking steps to improve its nuclear security and is aware of the extremist threat to its program,” Lt Gen Stewart said.
Observing that China has long identified the protection of its sovereignty and territorial integrity as a “core interest,” he said in the South China Sea, China has embarked on a multi year, whole-of-government approach to securing sovereignty, principally through maritime law enforcement presence and military patrols.
In 2016, China rejected the international arbitration ruling on its excessive South China Sea claims, built infrastructure at its man made outposts on the Spratly Islands, and for the first time, landed civilian aircraft on its airfields at Fiery Cross Reef, Subi Reef, and Mischief Reef.
“China will be able to use its reclaimed features as persistent civil-military bases, which will enhance its presence and its ability to control the features and nearby maritime space. Beijing recognises the need to defend these outposts and is prepared to respond to any military operations near them,” he told the lawmakers.
Lt Gen Stewart said a key component of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) strategy in a regional contingency is planning for potential US intervention. The PLA Rocket Force has given priority to developing and deploying regional ballistic and cruise missiles to expand its conventional strike capabilities against US forces and bases throughout the region.
“In addition to the Rocket Force’s fielding of an anti-ship ballistic missile, China is fielding an intermediate range ballistic missile capable of conducting conventional and nuclear strikes against ground targets in the Asia-Pacific region as far away as Guam,” he said.

No Sign Of Pakistani Nuclear Resolution (Daniel 8:8)

504-2002-05-28-india-pakistan-education-warIndia rejects Pakistan’s offer for nuclear test ban treaty

NEW DELHI, Sep 24, 2016, DHNS
India has rejected Pakistan’s proposal for a bilateral nuclear test ban treaty. The offer was made by Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during his recent speech at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. 
“We believe that the issues pertaining to nuclear disarmament do not have regional solutions,” spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Vikas Swarup said, indicating that
New Delhi was in no mood to accept the offer from Islamabad.  Sharif told the UN General Assembly on Wednesday that Pakistan was ready for talks with India to “agree on a bilateral nuclear test ban treaty”. His offer came at a time when New Delhi’s troubled relations with Islamabad worsened after the recent terror attack on the Indian Army camp at Uri in north Kashmir.
Four Pakistani suicide attackers had sneaked into India from across the Line of Control and carried out the attack, which resulted in the death of 18 soldiers of the Indian Army.
Sharif said while Pakistan was committed to establishing strategic stability in the region, it could not ignore India’s “unprecedented arms build-up” and would take whatever measures were necessary to maintain “credible deterrence”.
Sources told DH in New Delhi that India already had in place a unilateral moratorium on test of nuclear weapons and was not keen to hold discussion with Pakistan for a bilateral treaty.  New Delhi, however, argued that issues pertaining to nuclear disarmament were global in nature.  “Our position on these issues and our engagements with global forums dealing with these issues were a matter of record,” said Swarup.
The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) was adopted by the UN General on Assembly September 10, 1996 which is signed and ratified by 166 nations so far. The US and China are among the 17 nations, which have signed the treaty, but not ratified it.

Unfortunately not in this lifetime (Revelation 15)

On the eve of the International Day against Nuclear Tests, Pakistan has reiterated its offer for a bilateral arrangement with India on non-testing of nuclear weapons. While speaking at the UN General Assembly meeting, Pakistani delegate Yasar Ammar said, “Our commitment of not being the first to resume nuclear testing in our region also testifies our resolve to support the treaty’s objectives and purposes.” Islamabad’s commitment is praiseworthy and needs to be reciprocated by India. Nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation are in the interests of nuclear-capable states. Nuclear capability is no more a deterrence; rather, it has become a liability, and sooner the nuclear-armed states get rid of these arsenals, better the world will be.
Despite making good progress on stopping the proliferation of nuclear arms, the world is facing a growing threat of a nuclear war among hostile states as well as misuse of nuclear weapons by extremists who are trying to have access to these arsenals. Soon after taking charge as the president of the US, Barack Obama had pledged to rid the world of nuclear arms — a commitment that has not been materialised yet. The world needs to be more conscious of dangers associated with nuclear threat, and evolve failsafe strategies to save nuclear technology from going into the hands of terror groups. World powers should focus on efforts to lock down vulnerable atomic materials to prevent nuclear terrorism. A mutual ban on making further nuclear tests by Pakistan and India is need of the hour, and both states should cooperate in this regard. The leadership of both Pakistan and India claims that they have developed nuclear weapons as deterrence against any possible attack from either side. But these are only perceived fears that have no real grounds.
It is not rocket science. A nuclear war could yield an unprecedented human death toll and habitat destruction. Nobody is oblivious of the terrible consequences of using nuclear weapons. A total of 140,000 people were killed in Hiroshima on August 6, 1945 when the US dropped a nuclear bomb on the city. Therefore, these weapons are never going to be used in any case, and all states should cooperate and follow nuclear agreements in letter and spirit for the sake of humanity.
Although India and Pakistan have not signed the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty and Non-Proliferation Treaty, yet, ironically, they harbor a deep desire to become a part of the 48-member Nuclear Suppliers Group. Instead of focusing on the acquisition of more advanced nuclear capability, more efforts should be made to promote regional cooperation. Arms build-up by various states is hardly necessary in a world that badly needs peace. Instead of getting involved in the arms race and making irrational increases in defence budgets, rival states should spend money on positive usage of this technology. It is also necessary for Pakistan and India that instead of escalating tensions and increasing military expenditure, they should work for the establishment of lasting peace. Pakistan and India being neighbouring countries should focus on basic problems of their people. They should try to bring prosperity to their nations instead of indulging in an irrational nuclear arms race. *

The Upcoming Asian Nuclear War (Rev 8)

A Nuclear Arms Race That Could Spell Disaster For India, Pakistan

India and Pakistan flags being lowered at the Wagah border. Credit: Jack Zalium/Flickr CC BY-NC 2.0

India and Pakistan flags being lowered at the Wagah border. Credit: Jack Zalium/Flickr CC BY-NC 2.0

Strategic weapons modernisation in South Asia is increasingly becoming a bone of contention between India and Pakistan. With India recently introducing its first squadron of indigenously produced Tejas fighters – combined with its development of a nuclear triad, ballistic missile defence and intercontinental ballistic missiles – the contours of this strategic rivalry are evolving.

This dogged pace of modernisation means that even though Pakistan has six different nuclear-capable means of missile delivery and more on the way, Indian strategic modernisation will always present a new technological and strategic challenge that Pakistan would feel compelled to match, given that its pursuit of tactical nuclear weapons and nuclear-capable cruise missiles was provoked, in part, by Indian actions.

The stakes are even higher when factoring in India’s reported development of multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicles (MIRVs). The action-reaction syndrome that the neighbouring countries have followed with regard to their strategic weapons modernisation implies that Islamabad will be tempted to react to MIRVs developed by New Delhi.

In a recent volume edited by the Stimson Centre titled The Lure and Pitfalls of MIRVs: From the First to the Second Nuclear Age, Feroz H. Khan and Mansoor Ahmed, both renowned Pakistani nuclear scholars, envision three potential strategic choices for Islamabad in response to India’s evolving nuclear capabilities and MIRVs in particular: the ‘ignore’ option (no response), the ‘tortoise’ option (a gradual, measured response) and the ‘hare’ option (a rapid response). Khan and Ahmed contend that Pakistan will reject the ignore option because of the dominance of the ‘military-bureaucratic-scientific enclave’ in Pakistan and the history of its strategic arms competition with India.

Similarly, while some in Pakistan’s strategic enclave would undoubtedly agitate for a rapid response to Indian MIRVs, the country lacks the financial wherewithal and specialised intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities to develop MIRVs aggressively. Therefore, the tortoise approach seems to be Pakistan’s best option. Not only would it allow Islamabad to gradually acquire capabilities without diverting scarce resources away from conventional needs, it would also have the extra benefit of seeming less controversial to the international community than the rapid acquisition of MIRVs.

Regardless of whether the MIRV buildup is measured or tenacious, the end scenario, however, would still remain a subcontinent with more fissile material, warheads and delivery systems than either country’s nuclear stewards imagined when they promulgated doctrines of “credible minimum deterrence” in 1998.

Transparency and accommodation?

One way for India and Pakistan to reduce the lure of MIRVs would be for India to signal the impact of its recent strategic weapons development upon its nuclear doctrine. A white paper or even a statement of clarification could help stabilise relations with Pakistan.

For its part, Pakistani leaders could put forth a declared nuclear doctrine that would assuage Indian and international concerns about Pakistan’s threshold for nuclear use. A joint Indian-Pakistani effort to bolster transparency could ameliorate the security dilemma and ease the external pressure for strategic modernisation.

The tortoise option that Khan and Ahmed propose would reinforce such signalling, potentially bringing forth a semblance of stability to the bilateral relationship. However, the Pakistani strategic establishment would have to clearly signal its intentions and avoid the veil of strategic ambiguity if it aims to curtail the security dilemma through the tortoise option.

Just as clearer signalling from Pakistan of its intentions might have a stabilising effect, so too would an international initiative to accommodate Pakistan into the global nuclear order. In the absence of integration into the institutions that comprise this order, such as the Nuclear Suppliers Group, it is hard to imagine Islamabad abandoning its behaviour in the region. This is an important point, as it is clear that without so-called normalisation, Islamabad does not have an incentive to exercise strategic restraint. International actors like China and the US would have to negotiate the form this accommodation would take, but the need for their involvement in diplomatic initiatives to ameliorate the subcontinental rivalry is no longer in doubt.

Assessing the security dilemma

Besides more responsible communication and institutional integration, Pakistan would also be wise to take a more sober view of India’s emerging nuclear position. The main set of Indian weapons that concern Pakistani force planners and drive competitive modernisation are long-range ballistic missiles – particularly the Agni-V and Agni-VI land-based missiles, and the K-4 and K-15 sea-based missiles. It remains unclear, though, what new threat these add to Pakistan’s strategic calculus. The Agni-V and Agni-VI are clearly targeted towards China, not Pakistan. Targeting Pakistan with such weapons would be ineffective, especially since shorter-range systems exist for this purpose.
The argument that India’s development of the K-4 and K-15 could threaten Pakistan is perhaps more persuasive, but second-strike sea-based forces are widely perceived as defensive, stability-inducing capabilities rather than offensive, destabilising ones.

Khan and Ahmed do not address why these future capabilities would be more threatening to Pakistan than India’s current arsenal of land-based missiles, particularly the Prithvi (I-III) and the Agni (I-IV) series. This is an important omission considering that existing missiles already enable India to securely target much of Pakistan. With this in mind, it seems that the authors dismissed the ignore option too quickly because matching Indian capabilities, even at a slower pace, might add little to Pakistan’s security, while further aggravating the security dilemma.

Given these factors, one could argue with Khan and Ahmed’s contention that the tortoise option is a stable path for Pakistan to adopt. It could make sense for Pakistan to allow India to pursue the expensive proposition of developing MIRVs while opting not to do so itself, because India is highly unlikely to use such capabilities against Pakistan. Moreover, New Delhi remains unlikely to contemplate a ‘splendid first-strike’ against Pakistan because Islamabad is sufficiently prepared to launch a nuclear response. Thus, matching Indian capabilities, even over time, might provide few security benefits while further aggravating the security dilemma. From this perspective, maintenance of the status quo – and deploying crucial resources toward other priorities – could better enhance Pakistan’s security than the pursuit of MIRVs.

Shadow of the near future

That Pakistan’s strategic modernisation will respond to Indian advances is no surprise. However, what form this will take is anybody’s guess. This is a classic security dilemma scenario, where the defensive developments of each state breeds insecurity on the other side. Sino-Pakistan cooperation with regard to MIRVs or the exquisite ISR capabilities needed for effective counter-force targeting would do little to improve Islamabad’s security while deepening Washington and New Delhi’s strategic embrace. As India and Pakistan increasingly depend on their strategic partners to assert power in the Indian Ocean region, such relationships are likely to be extremely consequential for the stability of the region in the near future. India and Pakistan’s strategic modernisations thus cannot be seen in a vacuum. They have important implications for regional and global stability. The endgame here for the actors involved should thus not just be strategic stability in the subcontinent, but a semblance of stability in the balance of power in the larger game between the US and China. If recent developments in the region are anything to go by, this isn’t anywhere close to happening.

Debak Das is a PhD student at the Department of Government, Cornell University. A version of this piece originally appeared at South Asian Voices (@SAVoices), an online platform for strategic analysis and debate hosted by the Stimson Center.

The Pakistani Nuclear Flashpoint

Kashmir-nuclear-warKashmir: Nuclear flashpoint!

Muhammad Ali Baig

THE region of Kashmir is administered by Pakistan, China and India. It further divides in to the sub-regions of Jammu, Ladakh, Gilgit-Baltistan, Aksai Chin and Shaksgam Valley. The geo-strategic location of the region is pivotal in the geo-politics of South Asia. The major area of the region is disputed between Pakistan and India while the eastern territory is disputed between India and China. The importance of the region is undeniable and it puts great pressure on Pakistan as well as on China to meticulously watch the political situation in Kashmir in best of their interests.

The Kashmir region was ruled by Hari Singh at the time of partition and he unlawfully ceded the state to India; completely against the wishes of the majority Muslims present in the region. Soon after, the area was invaded by the Indian troops and has been disputed between India and Pakistan ever since. The Kashmir issue has been a source of almost every armed conflict between the two states and has also been named as the “Nuclear Flashpoint” by the international community.

President Ayub lost the chance of solving Kashmir issue during the 1962 Sino-Indian War and assured PM Nehru in written that Pakistan will never attack Kashmir. Even Chinese diplomats in Islamabad invited Pakistan to take back Kashmir but the brave Field Marshal Ayub Khan failed to realize the gravity of the situation. Senior diplomat Qudrat-Ullah Shahab narrates this event in his famous book “Shahab Nama”.

The Kashmir dispute can only be solved with the involvement of China on a larger scale. The stakes of China in the region are high and it is feasible to chalk out a plan with the assistance of Beijing. Pakistan may conduct a new form of “1939; Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact” with China and may give Eastern territories of Kashmir to China. The plan can only work with a combined political, military and diplomatic effort by China and Pakistan. The contemporary situation is feasible and China will move only by the hopes of incentives. The Kashmir may serve as a huge base for China and it will be pretty fruitful for China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) as well. In this way, the strategically important high mountains and plains of the region will not get into the hands of the U.S. or any other anti-China alliance in the future.

Indian domination dreams were envisaged by PM Nehru and since then its leadership is in the pursuit of a never ending pursuit. The Indian concept of Hindutva and the aim to lead Asia is quite challenging for both Pakistan and China. With the unprecedented support of the U.S.-led NATO; it is believed that India will soon begin to challenge the regional hegemony of China. According to the August 2016 issue of an Indian magazine “India Strategic”, the Indian Air Force has now evolved into a strategic air force with the help of America and the West. PM Modi’s address in the U.S. Congress is also an example when he said that “India’s activities in South China Sea are in the favour of the U.S.”. It clearly signifies the historic “hedging” ability of Indian Foreign Policy but the distance between Moscow and New Delhi is increasing steadily as well.

Any joint movement on the North-East and South-West of Kashmir by Pakistani and Chinese troops will not provoke full-scale war since the action does not involve crossing of international borders. In the opinion of the author, India only understands the language of power and resistance that is now exhibited by the gallant and brave people of Kashmir who are sacrificing lives every day in the name of freedom. The movement started by Burhan Wani will come to its logical end and the oppressive Indian rule in Kashmir will meet its bitter conclusion.

— The writer is freelance columnist based in Islamabad.

Nuclear Conflict Between India And Pakistan Rise


Tensions Between India And Pakistan May Rise Over Nuclear Deal

By Global Risk Insights – Jul 04, 2016, 3:02 PM CDT
Nuclear Suppliers Group backgrounder

At the recent visit of India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the U.S. in May 2016, the closer relationship between the U.S. and India was clear. A logical step forward was further seen when U.S. President Obama stated his approval for India to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG). While this would be a great move for overall worldwide security and nuclear non-proliferation, there is a danger of greater tensions between India and Pakistan.

As an international group with a current membership of 48 countries, the NSG seeks to control the export and transport of nuclear materials, equipment and technology in an effort to prevent nuclear proliferation. It sets global rules for international trade in nuclear energy technology. Only NSG members are allowed to transport the material.

Any non-members face huge restrictions on their use and transport of nuclear material. This explains why Iran, a non-member, received sanctions and resultant controversy over its nuclear programme prior to the recent nuclear deal. Ironically, the NSG was first founded in 1974 in the wake of India’s nuclear test and first met in November 1975.

In effect, the NSG is a body to control the global nuclear industry. Significant members include the USA, Russia, the UK, Japan, Germany, France, South Korea and China. These are all states which have nuclear weapons or have a significant history with nuclear weapons as well as Cold War tensions associated with them. Ultimately the NSG is another potential body, along with the UN, NATO and the European Union, which can help to maintain peace and solve international disputes.
Indo-Pakistani nuclear troubles

India’s joining the NSG is significant because of its past history with nuclear weapons and the consequential tensions with its neighbour and rival Pakistan. India’s first successful nuclear weapons test in 1974 was met with alarm in the international community. The NSG’s formation soon afterward reflected this alarm.

Tensions with Pakistan logically increased again and it is arguably because of India developing nuclear technology that Pakistan decided to pursue that technology as well. This animosity resulted in the two countries’ first successful nuclear weapons test in 1998. The Cold War theme of mutually assured destruction and the nuclear arms race seen between the U.S. and the Soviet Union was effectively played out again on a smaller scale.

Fears of nuclear war between India and Pakistan were high and it is still feasible in the present day. India’s joining the NSG will therefore be a positive move towards potentially stopping that. What will likely happen, and is already happening to some extent, is a closer relationship between the USA and India, economically and politically.

This will probably result in India moving further into the U.S. sphere of influence. The expansion of India’s nuclear industry is also possible and would be a strong move to meeting the energy needs of a growing population. This is relevant in a country where consistent electricity with no power cuts is still a luxury. Overall it would be a positive development.

However, the wider implications of India’s initiation into the NSG are less positive. Ultimately it has isolated Pakistan and put an end to any future talks between Pakistan and India, at least for now. This move could also push Pakistan closer to China, India’s current economic, and in some cases, political rival.

The USA’s reluctance to let Pakistan into the NSG as well, which Pakistan is now requesting, shows the underlying suspicions and mistrust of Pakistan. This stems from Pakistan’s past history with groups such as the Taliban and figures such as Osama bin Laden. It’s also a result of long-running issues in Pakistan such as corruption and the power of the military.

For India, Pakistan’s history with nuclear technology is a source of concern given unconfirmed rumors that the head of Pakistan’s nuclear programme sold secrets to Iran and North Korea. Overall, if India’s ascension to the NSG is confirmed, then it would move closer to the West. This would happen simultaneously with Pakistan’s closer alignment with China and nuclear weapons-based tensions could reemerge on the subcontinent.

In conclusion, the U.S. support of India joining the NSG is a story which has not been publicised much, but is one which could be extremely significant for the U.S., India, Pakistan, China, and the Middle East region as well. The Cold War may have ended more than 20 years ago, but its legacy remains. From an economic perspective, India’s NSG ascension would continue the trend under Modi of making India much more attractive to international investment.

By Rayhan Chouglay via Global Risk Insights

Not Armageddon But The Bowls of Wrath

Kashmir, the Flashpoint for a India-Pakistan Armageddon?

The most irresponsible and provocative statement of Dr. Qadeer Khan about nuking Delhi has drawn attention to the real possibility of the whole sub-continent along with South Asia going up in a flash! There have been a number of predictions about a possible nuclear holocaust in the sub-continent because of the race going on between the two neighbouring countries to acquire more and more nuclear and thermo-nuclear warheads. Pakistan is supposed to have 110 to 130 warheads while as India is stated to have 90 to 110! The most worrying aspect is the attempt by Pakistan to acquire tactical warheads capable of stalling the India’s cold start thrusts. They are also concentrating on getting submarines with nuclear missiles for acquiring a second strike capability.

About a couple of months back, Atul Singh wrote a detailed article in Fair Observer, titled, “Yes, Nuclear Terrorism is a Real Threat”! According to him, “Paul Ashley, a retired professional from the British Armed Forces, has mused that 2016 could be the year of nuclear terrorism. Many worry about a “dirty bomb” that might combine conventional explosives with radioactive material. Two of the bombers involved in the Brussels attacks appear to have monitored a senior researcher who worked at a Belgian nuclear center”. “A 2014 report by the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) estimated that “nearly 2,000 metric tons of weapons-usable nuclear materials remain spread across hundreds of sites around the globe.” The NTI report points out that some of these sites are poorly secured and that terrorists might have acquired the ability to build a bomb”.

Nuclear Terrorism may be the immediate concern of the western powers but our main apprehension is a sub-continental Armageddon! This has been highlighted by Dilip Hiro in his article “The most dangerous place on Earth” in Caravan Daily. The first para of the article sums up the situation, “Undoubtedly, for nearly two decades, the most dangerous place on Earth has been the Indian-Pakistani border in Kashmir. It’s possible that a small spark from artillery and rocket exchanges across that border might — given the known military doctrines of the two nuclear-armed neighbors — lead inexorably to an all-out nuclear conflagration. In that case the result would be catastrophic. Besides causing the deaths of millions of Indians and Pakistanis, such a war might bring on “nuclear winter” on a planetary scale, leading to levels of suffering and death that would be beyond our comprehension”.

According to Hiro, Kashmir is the root cause of enduring enmity between India and Pakistan. Three wars have been fought by the rivals on this, “toxic bone of contention”. He quotes President Bill Clinton who called the India Pakistan border in Kashmir as the most dangerous place on Earth! The most worrisome aspect is the Indian Cold Start doctrine involving massive tank thrusts and Pakistan’s response with the tactical nuclear weapons at the disposal of the field commanders. A limited encounter can rapidly escalate and result in a total nuclear exchange. It is a more worrisome scenario than Richter Scale 8 earthquake!

Within the sub-continent, it has been repeatedly asserted by all concerned that the core issue is Kashmir. India has been off and on deviating from its initial commitment of solving the problem in reference to the wishes of the people. In the beginning, Indian leaders including Pandit Nehru had declared that the final status of the State would be determined by reference to the people. Slowly, they reneged from this commitment and came to declare that Kashmir is an inseparable and integral part of India and the only dispute is the recovering of the part under Pakistani control. They not only made a total about turn in their stand but started measures for physical and cultural integration of the State into the mainland India.

Earlier, these measures were taken in a clandestine way but after the installation of the BJP government at the centre, these measures have not only been accelerated but are being taken in a brazen way. The recent events involving certain steps being taken by the Central Government with the active participation of the State Government have been alleged to be a part of a diabolical plan to change the demography of the only Muslim majority state in India. The Sainik Colonies, the Composite Townships for Pandits, the permanent settlement of Pakistani refugees and so on are being viewed with suspicion in spite of clarifications by the State Government. Incidentally, State Government’s explanations are negatived by BJP leaders time and again.

The result has been extreme alienation of the people in general and the youth, being harassed from all sides, in particular. The recent militant attacks show that the youth getting squeezed in from all sides are reacting violently. According to some top security and defence officials, the most worrying aspect is the open support of common people to these new militants, mostly locals and even some deserters from the Kashmir Police. The new Hindutva slanted measures have started uniting the various groups in the “Azadi” camp which had been earlier drifting apart. This attempted Hinduisation of Muslim Kashmir is a fuse not only locally but an invitation for outsiders to join in the “Jihad”! BJP’s failure to bring in Ache Din and the looming elections in some States need a new round of opium for the poor voters. As always, rising Indo-Pak tension posing a threat to “National Security” has been the best bet. However, the authors of this strategy need to think over the ultimate consequences of this dangerous game which, as predicted by many, may end in a South Asian Armageddon!

Upcoming Asian Nuclear Conflict

Conventional conflict between India-Pakistan can escalate to nuclear use: US

India TV News Desk 01 Jun 2016, 11:06:39

Washington: The United States has expressed serious concern over the conventional conflict between India and Pakistan saying it can escalate to include nuclear use.

“We are concerned by nuclear and missile developments in South Asia,” a State Department spokesperson said here on Tuesday.

The spokesperson also called for a sustained and resilient dialogue process between the two neighbouring countries to boost regional peace.

The reaction came in the backdrop of the recent statement by father of Pakistan’s nuclear programme Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan (80) that Islamabad has the ability to target New Delhi in just 5 minutes.

“We are concerned by the increased security challenges that accompany growing stockpiles and the increased risk that a conventional conflict between India and Pakistan could escalate to include nuclear use. It is important that there be a sustained and resilient dialogue process between the two neighbours, and that all parties in the region continuously act with maximum restraint and work collaboratively toward reducing tensions,” the spokesperson said.

Improvements in Indo-Pak bilateral relations would greatly enhance prospects for lasting peace, stability and prosperity in the region, the official said.

US had in past asked both India and Pakistan to make progress in reducing their nuclear arsenal and develop military doctrines so that they do not continually move in the wrong direction.

Looking forward to PM Modi’s visit: US

Meanwhile, the State Department said that it is looking forward to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US.

“We look forward to the Prime Minister’s visit and we want it to be successful,” State Department John Kirby told reporters at his daily news conference.

Modi will embark on a five-nation visit from June 4 which will cover Afghanistan, Qatar, Switzerland, the US and Mexico.

He will travel to the US on June 7 at the invitation of US President Barack Obama, with whom he will review the progress made in key areas of defence, security and energy, and will also address a Joint Meeting of the US Congress.
With PTI Inputs

The India Pakistan Dilemma (Daniel 8:8)


SOUTH ASIAN DILEMMA
Abrar Hussain

Saturday, October 10, 2015 – South Asia has been a region of significance to the major powers for centuries. It has always been under consistent study owing to its unique geography in between the sea routes of the Indian Ocean and the possible land route of Central Asia to connect Europe to the East. The struggle between the major powers owed to its vital geostrategic posture and maritime lines of communication has diluted the regional balance of power. Major Powers invariably prefer resource rich, logistic vital South Asia for their economic and strategic gains over regional stability. US pivotal role, China’s policy of “Peaceful Rise” and the quest of Russian geopolitical aims, introduced South Asia to a new Great Game. It includes the competition over maritime advancements, transit routes, economic zones and strategic points.

‘Vietnam Syndrome’ of US in South Asia is aimed against China’s aggressive soft power diplomacy of providing loans with uncomplicated repayment terms, investment in infrastructure buildup, military assistance and political support. China’s strive to access maritime extension via Indian Ocean has threatened Delhi and Washington. Robert D Kaplan sees China’s excessive involvement in South Asian waters as insecurity of US and a reason of turmoil in the region.

Aiming to restrain China’s ambitions of extending its regional plus global sphere of influence, Indo-US strategic nexus is going beyond the ideology of non-proliferation and arms control. Their ‘Next Steps in Strategic Partnership’ through which US intended to assist India with its space programme, high technology deals and missile defence. This will not only restrain China’s rise in Indian Ocean but also it will ease US engagements in Far-East and Southeast Asia. Accordingly US power play adds fuel to the existing fire of Indo-Pak relations. Pakistan is concerned about the long term implications of Indo-US nuclear deal and the growing strategic partnership between the two countries.

Russo-American interest in the defence market of India as a well-off investment has drastically altered Indo-Pak military balance. Indian multidimensional modernization in military architecture has compelled Pakistan to enhance its nuclear programme to deter Indian massive conventional arms buildup and offensive doctrinal shifts. In the face of unsettled disputes and harsh hostility between India and Pakistan, the discriminatory defence agreements raised more red flags in the conflict-ridden South Asia. Another rationale of South Asian ugly stability is the nuclear imbalance. The non-proliferation regime has failed to produce non-discriminatory, multilateral and internationally effective treaty. Secondly the commitment of non-proliferation regime seriously weakened by Indo-US nuclear deal and welcoming waiver for India into NSG. Through the deal India can freely import Uranium, which will enable it to produce significant amounts of fissile material. Though its peaceful purpose is being highlighted, but owing to the critical regional geopolitics, it will not take long for India to develop atoms of peace into war machinery.

In such an unstable environment, there is no question for Pakistan to endorse the loose abbreviation of arms control treaties. Various international actors are taking benefit of Pakistan’s refusal to permit talks on NPT and FMCT, despite of the fact to highlight the prerequisites and inability of international non-proliferation regime to go after the big fish.

NPT being the most widespread treaty on non-proliferation of nukes, needs a considerable revision according to the politico-strategic canvas of Nuclear South Asia. Its core agenda of Nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation remained unfulfilled because the P5 inability to assure national security interest and objectives of strategic stability equally to both India and Pakistan. The status-quo of P5 in the series of NPT review conferences without any agreeable conclusion sets NPT itself in trouble. Furthermore, FMCT itself is objectionable; it implies only a halt in future production of fissile material. It never emphasized about existing stockpiles and reactor grade Plutonium in which India supersedes Pakistan. Pakistan always wants a solution to the problem of existing uneven stockpiles.

—Islamabad