Sunday, March 10, 2019

India: Rising Great Power or Paper Tiger?

Is India what The Economist magazine describes a "paper elephant" in spite of huge increases in its military spending? Has this perception been reinforced by post-Pulwama events between India and Pakistan? Have the failures of Indian military in Balakot and Kashmir caused a reassessment of the western narrative that says "India is a rapidly rising and Pakistan is collapsing"?

India-Pakistan Military Spending: Infographic Courtesy The Economist

Do Indians, particularly its Hindu Nationalists, suffer from what Indian diplomat and politician Sashi Tharoor has described as "India's Israel Envy"? Is the Hindu Supremacist ideology similar to Naziism and Fascism? Does it represent a serious threat to world peace? Can it lead to a global disaster with billions dead if the two South Asian nations target each other with nuclear weapons?

Have post-Pulwama events brought Kashmir on the international agenda? New York Times editorial board has written: "As long as #India and Pakistan refuse to deal with their core dispute — the future of #Kashmir, India’s only Muslim-majority state — they face unpredictable, possibly terrifying, consequences." Does this suggest that Kashmir issue is back on the agenda? IOC, the world's second largest organization of 57 countries, has condemned “in the strongest possible terms recent wave of Indian terrorism in occupied Jammu and Kashmir that has resulted in the deaths of 48 people in the month of November alone, making 2018 one of the deadliest years." Is this a rejection of Indian position on Kashmir?

Viewpoint From Overseas host Misbah Azam discusses these questions with Sabahat Ashraf (iFaqir) and Riaz Haq (www.riazhaq.com).

https://youtu.be/Xc2oHd-T5qs




Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Rise of "Hindu Nazis" in India

Balakot and Kashmir: Fact Checkers Expose Indian Lies

Is Pakistan Ready for War with India?

Pakistan-Made Airplanes Lead Nation's Defense Exports

Modi's Blunders and Delusions 

India's Israel Envy: What If Modi Attacks Pakistan?

Project Azm: Pakistan to Develop 5th Generation Fighter Jet

Pakistan Navy Modernization

Pakistan's Sea-Based Second Strike Capability

Who Won the 1965 War? India or Pakistan?

13 comments:

Mantou said...

There is actually a lot or eerie similarities between India and Israel.

1) Both countries begins with the letter "I".
2) Both countries was created around the same time as a result of post colonialism.
3) Both countries have been massively abusing their Muslim populations.
4) Both countries are occupying United Nation recognized disputed territories. (Israel - Palestine (1947), India - Kashmir(1947) and South Tibet (2009))
5) Both countries have invaded and grabbed land from every single of its neighbors.

Here is an selected list for India

1947 Annexation of Kashmir:
http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/02/06/indias-shame/
http://thediplomat.com/2015/08/kashmirs-young-rebels/
1949 Annexation of Manipur:
http://www.tehelka.com/manipurs-merger-with-india-was-a-forced-annexation/
http://www.passblue.com/2017/09/05/in-lush-manipur-women-work-for-peace-as-militarization-marches-on/
1949 Annexation of Tripura:
http://www.crescent-online.net/2009/09/the-myths-of-one-nation-and-one-hinduism-in-india-zawahir-siddique-2316-articles.html
1951 Annexation of South Tibet:
http://kanglaonline.com/2011/06/khathing-the-taking-of-tawang/
http://www.mainstreamweekly.net/article2582.html
http://chasfreeman.net/india-pakistan-and-china/
1954 Annexation of Nagaland:
http://morungexpress.com/desire-nagas-live-separate-nation-deserved/
http://nagalandmusings.blogspot.com/2013/01/indias-untold-genocide-of-nagas.html
1954 Attempt annexation of Sikkim and Bhutan (Failed):
http://redbarricade.blogspot.hk/2013/01/twisted-truth.html
1961 Annexation of Goa:
http://www.ruleoflaw.org.au/the-annexation-of-goa/
http://www.historytoday.com/richard-cavendish/goa-falls-indian-troops
http://goa-invasion-1961.blogspot.in/2013/09/india-pirated-goa-china-is-regaining_16.html
1962 Annexation of Kalapani, Nepal:
http://www.eurasiareview.com/07032012-indian-hegemony-in-nepal-oped/
http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1239348
http://www.sharnoffsglobalviews.com/land-disputes-116/
1962 Aggression against China:
http://gregoryclark.net/redif.html
http://asiapacific.anu.edu.au/news-events/podcasts/renewed-tension-indiachina-border-whos-blame

Riaz Haq said...

Are #India’s Think Tanks filled with retired armchair generals Cheered on by #Indian media, Promoting Conflict With #Pakistan ? #Modi #Hindutva - Bloomberg

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-03-07/are-india-s-think-tanks-promoting-conflict-with-pakistan

Peace appears to have been given a chance in South Asia. Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, striving to play the statesman, has not only released a captured Indian pilot but also detained several alleged Pakistani militants. Still, there’s good reason to worry that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi might once again ratchet up tensions against a nuclear-armed neighbor as he approaches the most crucial election of his political life.



Modi’s militant nationalism, loudly amplified by Indian television anchors, isn’t the only flammable element in a volatile situation. India’s burgeoning military-intellectual complex also deserves the world’s close and skeptical scrutiny.

One wing of this community consists of superannuated and clearly bored generals, titillating hyper-patriotic television anchors and themselves with visions of do-or-die wars and glorious victories. Their jingoism far exceeds the capacity of the Indian military, which, an internal report recently revealed, is encumbered with “vintage” equipment.

Perhaps more worrying, though, are the credentialed members of what a recent report by Brookings India identified as India’s “strategic community.” Though much more sober than the fire-breathing talking heads on cable TV, they seem equally attracted to the “temptation,” as U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower put it in his classic warning against the military-industrial complex, of “some spectacular and costly” military action.

Perched in privately funded think tanks, many of these connoisseurs of “surgical strikes” did not seem in the least shocked or disturbed that an Indian leader who has, as the Economist put it last week, “made a career of playing with fire” was now playing with Armageddon by launching airstrikes into Pakistan. Rather, they echoed the Hindu nationalist consensus that India was now finally dictating the terms of engagement with its rival — a triumphalism shattered the very next day when Pakistan raised its own threshold for conflict with India by striking within Indian territory and bringing down an Indian warplane.

Eisenhower’s fear in 1961 of vested interests acquiring “unwarranted influence” is freshly pertinent in today’s New Delhi. With hopes rising that India would soon be a superpower closely allied to the U.S., as well as a strategic counterweight to China, much Indian and foreign money has gone into creating a luxurious ecosystem for strategic experts and foreign-policy analysts.

Riaz Haq said...

Are #India’s Think Tanks filled with retired armchair generals Cheered on by #Indian media, Promoting Conflict With #Pakistan ? #Modi #Hindutva - Bloomberg

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-03-07/are-india-s-think-tanks-promoting-conflict-with-pakistan

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

There’s ample reason to fear that such an often murkily funded and influential security establishment outside government won’t serve the cause of democracy and peace in the Indian subcontinent. In the U.S., a series of reports by the New York Times in 2016 alleged that on all kinds of issues, including military sales to foreign countries, think tanks were “pushing agendas important to corporate donors, at times blurring the line between researchers and lobbyists.” If intellectual dishonesty mars analysis in Washington, it can be expected to be more pervasive in New Delhi, where the line between paid service for corporate donors and research work is even fuzzier.

It may seem melodramatic to fear that a few well-connected intellectual racketeers might endanger democracy and social stability. But America under President Donald Trump confirms that Eisenhower was right to worry that an axis of government, corporations and intellectuals-on-hire might skew national priorities, or that, pathologically obsessed with an enemy, his country might degenerate into “a community of dreadful fear and hate.”

Already by 1984, George F. Kennan, arguably America’s finest diplomat, was lamenting that the “habit” of constantly preparing for “an imagined war” with the Soviet Union had “risen to the status of a vast addiction of American society.” This habit, Kennan presciently warned, “would be difficult to eradicate in the future,” long after the U.S.S.R. had disappeared.

In India, Hindu nationalist politicians and their sympathizers in the media have similarly turned an imagined punitive war on Pakistan into another vast addiction, and the military-intellectual complex increasingly aggravates this national habit. Focused on Islamabad’s backing for the militant insurgency in Kashmir, they’ve successfully externalized a problem that is primarily domestic: the Modi government’s resolve to suppress, rather than address, Kashmiri demands for democracy and civil liberties.

Ajai Shukla was one of the very few mainstream Indian writers on security issues to point out that “the wider story in a crisis with such potential devastation is that the Modi government has launched a nationwide anti-Muslim agenda that regards Muslims as unpatriotic, Pakistan as a cunning and implacable foe and Kashmiri separatists as its willing tools.” Thus, Shukla argues, Kashmiris protesting against Indian brutality have come to be widely seen as “Muslim traitors, rather than the manifestation of a political problem that has to be discussed and resolved, not militarily crushed.”

Zealously pushing a military solution to a political problem, India’s political, media and security establishment suffered a debacle last month. They ought to “learn,” as Eisenhower exhorted, “how to compose differences not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose” — above all in Kashmir, which is the key, now more than ever, to the health of civil society in both India and Pakistan.

Ravi said...

Just accept that you are afraid of Modi.
Writing blogs will not help though.

Riaz Haq said...

Ravi: "Just accept that you are afraid of Modi."

You should be even more afraid of Modi than Pakistanis.

Modi is a megalomanic like Hitler who brought greater destruction to his country than to other countries.



Riaz Haq said...

#JF17Thunder Block III Production Starts. Fighter will feature #AESCAN radar, new electronic warfare system, upgraded avionics with a 3-axis fly-by-wire digital flight controls, and helmet-mounted display and sight system. #Pakistan #China @Diplomat_APAC http://thediplomat.com/2019/03/report-jf-17-thunder-block-iii-fighter-jet-production-is-underway/

Development and production of the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex/Chengdu Aerospace Corporation (PAC/CAC) JF-17 “Thunder” Block III multirole fighter aircraft is reportedly underway, the chief designer of the fighter jet, Yang Wei, said at press conference in China last week.

“All related work is being carried out,” Yang was quoted as saying by Chinese state media. “The third block will see the JF-17’s informatized warfare capability and weapons upgraded.” As I reported previously, JF-Block-III fighter jets are expected to receive the Chinese-made KLJ-7A active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar system. It would be the Pakistan Air Force’s first AESA-equipped fighter aircraft.

JF-17 Block III aircraft will reportedly also feature a new electronic warfare system, upgraded avionics including a three-axis fly-by-wire digital flight control system, and a helmet-mounted display and sight system. With its new integrated sensor package, the aircraft will have the capability for quick information sharing and network-enabled operations that facilitate earlier detection and interception of enemy aircraft.


When discussing the start of aircraft production, Yang was most likely referring to the manufacturing of the JF-17’s airframe, with PAC reportedly producing 58 percent and CAC 42 percent of it. The development status of any of the new Block III subsystems is not known. However, once the Nanjing Research Institute of Electronics Technology (NRIET) completes development of the new AESA radar system, it “can be fitted on the airframe very fast, ensuring a quick delivery time,” Yang emphasized.

(Notably, Yang in his comments named neither NRIET nor the exact AESA radar system to be installed on the JF-17 Block III.)

JF-17 Block I and Block II aircraft, of which the PAF operates around 85 in total as of March 2019, have been fitted with NRIET’s older KLJ-7 X-band fire control radar. All three JF-17 variants are powered by a Chinese license-built Klimov RD-93 (an RD-33 derivative) turbofan engine. The JF-17 has an approximate combat radius of up to 1,200 kilometers without refueling and can reach a maximum speed of up to Mach 1.6.

The JF-17 costs $25 million per unit, although the Block III per-unit price is expected to go up as a result of the new subsystems, including the expensive new AESA radar system. The PAF intends to procure up to 50 new Block III aircraft.

The aircraft can alternatively be armed with air-to-air, air-to-surface, and anti-ship missiles. It will also be able to fire beyond-visual-range air-to-air missiles (BVRAAM). An unnamed BVRAAM was test fired by the PAF last month and possibly today.

During a recent military standoff with India, a PAF JF-17 may have engaged an Indian Air Force fighter jet.

Riaz Haq said...

#India, #Pakistan threatened to unleash #missiles at each other. #India threatened to fire at least six missiles at Pakistan, and Islamabad said it would respond with its own missile strikes “three times over”. #Balakot #Kashmir #Modi https://reut.rs/2HzpotM

The way in which tensions suddenly worsened and threatened to trigger a war between the nuclear-armed nations shows how the Kashmir region, which both claim and is at the core of their enmity, remains one of the world’s most dangerous flashpoints.

The exchanges did not get beyond threats, and there was no suggestion that the missiles involved were anything more than conventional weapons, but they created consternation in official circles in Washington, Beijing and London.

Reuters has pieced together the events that led to the most serious military crisis in South Asia since 2008, as well as the concerted diplomatic efforts to get both sides to back down.

The simmering dispute erupted into conflict late last month when Indian and Pakistani warplanes engaged in a dogfight over Kashmir on Feb 27, a day after a raid by Indian jet fighters on what it said was a militant camp in Pakistan. Islamabad denied any militant camp exists in the area and said the Indian bombs exploded on an empty hillside.

In their first such clash since the last war between the two nations in 1971, Pakistan downed an Indian plane and captured its pilot after he ejected in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir.

Hours later, videos of the bloodied Indian pilot, handcuffed and blindfolded, appeared on social media, identifying himself to Pakistani interrogators, deepening anger in New Delhi.

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi facing a general election in April-May, the government was under pressure to respond.


That evening, Indian National Security Adviser Ajit Doval spoke over a secure line to the head of Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), Asim Munir, to tell him India was not going to back off its new campaign of “counter terrorism” even after the pilot’s capture, an Indian government source and a Western diplomat with knowledge of the conversations told Reuters in New Delhi.

Doval told Munir that India’s fight was with the militant groups that freely operated from Pakistani soil and it was prepared to escalate, said the government source.

A Pakistani government minister and a Western diplomat in Islamabad separately confirmed a specific Indian threat to use six missiles on targets inside Pakistan. They did not specify who delivered the threat or who received it, but the minister said Indian and Pakistani intelligence agencies “were communicating with each other during the fight, and even now they are communicating with each other”.

Pakistan said it would counter any Indian missile attacks with many more launches of its own, the minister told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“We said if you will fire one missile, we will fire three. Whatever India will do, we will respond three times to that,” the Pakistani minister said.

Doval’s office did not respond to a request for comment. India was not aware of any missile threat issued to Pakistan, a government official said in reply to a Reuters request for comment.

Pakistan’s military declined to comment and Munir could not be reached for comment. Pakistan’s foreign ministry did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.

---
U.S. security advisor Bolton was on the phone with Doval on the night of Feb 27 itself, and into the early hours of Feb 28, the second day of the Trump-Kim talks, in an attempt to defuse the situation, the Western diplomat in New Delhi and the Indian official said.

Later, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who was also in Hanoi, also called both sides to seek a way out of the crisis.

“Secretary Pompeo led diplomatic engagement directly, and that played an essential role in de-escalating the tensions between the two sides,” State Department deputy spokesperson Robert Palladino said in a briefing in Washington on March 5.

Anonymous said...

The primary objective of the ballot balakot airstrike was securing modi reelection that has happened..

Also you seriously think the IAF pilots were good enough to penetrate deep within Paki territory and fly back unharmed but not one of the state of the art Israeli bombs hit anything? Seriously?

Riaz Haq said...

#Islamabad should not anticipate #Modi’s hostility towards Pakistan to abate after #India's elections. To the contrary, any #BJP win will reinforce their conviction that aggression against #Pakistan and the #Kashmiris is a winning formula. #Balakot https://www.dawn.com/news/1470123

Any belief in India that its military adventurism has ‘worked’ could erode the stability of mutual deterrence which Pakistan’s military response of Feb 27 re-established. If New Delhi is convinced that Pakistan can be cowed by a combination of military and diplomatic pressure, it may feel emboldened in the next crisis to conduct military strikes at a ‘higher’ level.


Pakistan must, therefore, take steps to expose India’s falsehoods before, during, and after the military exchanges of Feb 26-28. It should advertise that India’s bombs destroyed trees and killed a crow. It must reveal to the world, including the people of India, how Pakistan could have destroyed Indian military targets but chose not to do so. It should point out that India’s captured pilot could have been humiliated and India could have had its nose rubbed in the dirt by requiring a minister or its air chief to come and retrieve him. Finally, it should be made clear that Pakistan’s actions against militant organisations are designed to implement its own National Action Plan, not in response to Indian or other external pressure.

Islamabad should not anticipate that Modi’s hostility towards Pakistan will abate after the Indian national elections. Apart from their ideological animus, if Modi and the Hindu alliance succeed in the forthcoming elections, it will reinforce their conviction that aggression against Pakistan and the Kashmiris is a winning formula.

Unfortunately, India’s aggressive posture is being actively encouraged by the US which is now firmly aligned with New Delhi in its global rivalry with China. Pakistan enjoys some leverage in the context of Afghanistan; but this does not seem to have prevented Washington’s one-sided pressure on Pakistan during and after India’s military incursion.

Yet, this does not imply that the Kashmir issue will fade away. Despite all odds — massive Indian oppression, over 100,000 killed, Pakistan’s frequent indifference — the Kashmiris have persisted in their struggle for freedom from Indian rule for over 70 years.

The current uprising in occupied Kashmir is led by the third generation of Kashmiris. It is entirely indigenous. It has continued for four years without external support and is likely to be sustained. Like Afghanistan, Kashmir is mountainous, and India is a large and fractured country where active insurgencies are under way in 119 districts (according to former prime minister Manmohan Singh) and can find succour from various internal sources.

The BJP’s plan to ‘resolve’ the Kashmir ‘problem’ is to colonise it and transform it into a Hindu-majority state. A first step in this plan would be to eliminate Jammu & Kashmir’s ‘special’ and autonomous status under the Indian constitution. If Modi and the BJP proceed with this plan, the Kashmiri resistance will obviously intensify. The Hindu fundamentalists may then be tempted to resort to the outright genocide of the Kashmiri Muslims.

As the blood flows, the Kashmiri diaspora, and sympathetic Pakistanis, will seek to join the freedom struggle, including from Pakistan’s territory. The Pakistan government will then face a binary choice: facilitate the freedom fighters or fight them as ‘terrorists’.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan: No links found in probe of #India's #Pulwama dossier. At least 54 individuals had been arrested, 22 locations investigated and a number of phone numbers tracked as part of the investigation@AJENews https://aje.io/bzmy8

Pakistan says it has conducted initial investigations into a dossier provided by neighbouring India on the Pulwama suicide attack in Kashmir, concluding that so far no links can be drawn between Pakistan and the bombing, the foreign office said.

At least 54 individuals had been arrested, 22 locations investigated and a number of phone numbers tracked as part of the investigation, said a Pakistani foreign office statement released on Thursday.

Pakistan said it had shared its findings with India a day earlier, while also briefing top diplomats in the capital Islamabad.

Tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours spiked last month after a suicide bombing in the Indian-administered Kashmir town of Pulwama killed at least 40 Indian security forces personnel.

India blamed Pakistan for "controlling" the attack and launched punitive air raids on what it termed "a training camp" on Pakistani soil shortly thereafter.

Pakistan said the air attacks hit an uninhabited forest, and launched its own air attacks adjacent to Indian military targets, causing no casualties.

Both sides deployed fighter jets and in an aerial dogfight, an Indian aircraft was shot down, resulting in the capture of its pilot.

With his return two days later, tensions began to subside, although both countries' militaries remain on high alert.

On Wednesday, Pakistan fully reopened its airspace for flights originating or departing from the country for the first time in a month. Transit flights over Pakistani airspace remain suspended.

Shortly after the attack, a video emerged of alleged suicide bomber Adil Dar, a native of Indian-administered Kashmir, claiming responsibility for the attack and swearing allegiance to Pakistan-based armed group Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM).

Riaz Haq said...

#Modi threatens #Pakistan: We have not kept our nuclear arsenal for Diwali: PM Narendra Modi warns Pakistan. #India #BJP #nukes https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/videos/news/we-have-not-kept-our-nuclear-arsenal-for-diwali-pm-narendra-modi-warns-pakistan/videoshow/68978935.cms

Prime Minister Narendra Modi today issued a stern warning to Pakistan and said that India no longer fears Pakistan's nuclear threats. PM Modi further said that India's nuclear arsenal are not saved for Diwali. The BJP leader's comment came during a rally at Rajasthan's Barmer. PM Narendra Modi said, "India has stopped the policy of getting scared of Pakistan's threats ... Every other day, they would say 'we have nuclear button'. Our media used to write that Pakistan too has nuclear weapons ... What do we have then? Have we kept ours (nuclear arsenal) for Diwali?"

Riaz Haq said...

Ex CM of #India Occupied #Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti hits back at PM #Modi , says #Pakistan #nuclear bombs not kept for Eid either

https://scroll.in/latest/920944/pakistans-nuclear-bombs-are-not-kept-for-eid-either-mehbooba-mufti-hits-back-at-pm-modi

The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister’s statement came after the prime minister had bragged about India’s nuclear capability.

Peoples Democratic Party chief and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for bragging about India’s nuclear capability. She accused Modi of “stooping low” and lowering the country’s political discourse.

On Sunday, Modi had said that his government had refused to be intimidated by Pakistan’s nuclear threats and that with the Balakot air strike, India had given Pakistan a “fitting reply”. “What do we have then? Have we kept our nuclear bomb for Diwali?” Modi had said at a rally in Barmer district of Rajasthan. Modi had said that his government had made the terrorists afraid from across the border and the results of it were visible as there were no blasts anywhere in the country in the last five years.

On Monday, Mufti said, “If India hasn’t kept nuclear bomb for Diwali, it’s obvious Pakistan’s not kept theirs for Eid either. Don’t know why PM Modi must stoop so low & reduce political discourse to this.”

Addressing reporters in Kulgam, Mufti once again criticised Modi for his remark. “What Pakistan [nuclear bombs] possesses would not be saved for Eid either. We are evenly placed in this matter,” she said.

Riaz Haq said...

Military expenditure in Asia and Oceania has risen every year since 1988. At $507 billion, military spending in the region accounted for 28 per cent of the global total in 2018, compared with just 9.0 per cent in 1988.

In 2018 India increased its military spending by 3.1 per cent to $66.5 billion. Military expenditure by Pakistan grew by 11 per cent (the same level of growth as in 2017), to reach $11.4 billion in 2018. South Korean military expenditure was $43.1 billion in 2018—an increase of 5.1 per cent compared with 2017 and the highest annual increase since 2005.

‘The tensions between countries in Asia as well as between China and the USA are major drivers for the continuing growth of military spending in the region,’ says Siemon Wezeman, a senior researcher with the SIPRI AMEX programme.

https://sipri.org/media/press-release/2019/world-military-expenditure-grows-18-trillion-2018

https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/Data%20for%20all%20countries%20from%201988%E2%80%932018%20in%20constant%20%282017%29%20USD%20%28pdf%29.pdf

https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/Data%20for%20all%20countries%20from%201988%E2%80%932018%20as%20a%20share%20of%20GDP%20%28pdf%29.pdf