The writer is a retired chief of naval staff.
As we watch the situation in Ladakh unfold, it becomes increasingly obvious that not only is a military resolution improbable, but a “hot-war” may be unaffordable for both nuclear-armed countries
The time for ambivalence is over and while India will have to fight its own territorial battles with determination, this is the moment to seek external balancing. It is also time to seek an enlargement of this grouping into a partnership of the like-minded.
At the strategic level, the government must moot a sustained process of engagement with China at the highest politico-diplomatic echelons. The negotiations should seek multi-dimensional Sino-Indian modus-vivendi; encompassing the full gamut of bilateral issues like trade, territorial disputes, border-management and security.
For reasons of national security as well as self-respect, India cannot continue to remain in a “reactive mode” to Chinese provocations and it is time to respond in kind.
The establishment of credible mutual deterrence between two nuclear rivals, by diminishing the possibility of a surprise nuclear attack, forms the basis of what is termed “strategic stability”.
It needs to be borne in mind that selection of important office-holders — civil and military — remains the prerogative of the government in power.
Will the nation not be immeasurably strengthened if we retain sharp focus on enhancing internal cohesion through assimilation, inclusivity and maintenance of domestic harmony — and above all, on economic development?
The past five years have seen the last vestiges of the Nehruvian legacy being progressively swept away. Conclusive proof of this came when the present government ordered retaliatory raids, in peace time, on Pakistani soil.
Since 1947, New Delhi has failed to learn anything from the past in Kashmir.
Defence reforms should be a priority, the most vital being the creation of a Chief of Defence Staff
India will soon have a newly-elected government in place. But as far as national security goes, all party manifestos appear equally insipid and unfocused, confirming fears that the recent hoopla about security was superficial and election-driven.
Absent a “Kashmir Strategy” in New Delhi, the army’s sacrifices to establish peace in the Valley have been in vain because a venal political class has never risen to the occasion to restore a functional civil administration.
Hyper-nationalism at the hustings and war-mongering in TV studios could not only damage India’s delicate social fabric but also drive the nation into an unwanted conflict.
We remain deficient in intelligence-analysis, inter-agency coordination, and, above all, a national security doctrine. Having created an elaborate national security framework, post Pokhran II, India has strangely shied away from promulgating a doctrine.
Navy’s first home-built, ballistic-missile armed submarine makes India’s nuclear deterrence credible
India-Japan ties are warming up but expectations from Modi-Abe discussions must remain anchored in reality
Serving soldiers have approached SC over AFSPA. They must not be made to pay for governments’ failures.
China’s maritime strategy calls for a paradigm shift in India’s defence-industrial programmes. But declining budgets, dysfunctional acquisitions could stymie strategic necessities.
Defence cooperation remains high on rhetoric, short on delivery. Both South Block and Capitol Hill need to do more to revitalise and elevate ties.
The absence of an over-arching vision which views the Indian Ocean region in a long-term perspective has led to the neglect of maritime issues critical to India’s vital interests
Continuing dependence on foreign arms, coupled with a dysfunctional acquisition process, is eroding the combat readiness of India’s armed forces.
India needs to mark 25 years of Indo-ASEAN by breaking diplomatic stasis, broadening horizons.
It must stay with Quad. It offers space for economic consolidation, strategic autonomy
First, we need to create a sub-cadre within IAS, trained in the management of national security issues.
Malabar exercise has far-reaching geo-political impact. India-Japan-US triad must be elevated to strategic status