Sunday, May 15, 2011

COVERT DETERRENCE AS AN INTERMEDIATE OPTION

B.RAMAN
(My reply to a reader's comments)

I have been in receipt of the following E-mail message from a reader:

"In your earlier articles in the past two months when you wrote about peace talks with Pakistan it had this context of cricket diplomacy and it appeared you even pushed for it and I understand it was a valid point and even recently after OBL was killed you mentioned that the new situation shouldn't affect peace talks or affect Indo- Pak relations and it seemed that you were of the opinion that the Mohali momentum should continue. In those articles you were explicit as to the reasons but this article, where you propose to continue the TTHH policy, seems to rake up old wounds which it looked like you were ok to overlook at that time.

"What I mean is in this article, there doesn't appear to be anything new which you and the rest were not knowing about Pakistan that John Kerry revealed so why & what is reason for reassessment? I understand that when you urged for the momentum of recent peace talks to continue you certainly didn't mean to forget TTHH policy but just that you probably meant to keep it aside for the time being. So what is the reason for reassessment when Pakistan hasn't made any anti-India comments (like Kayani's India centric comment or of that nature). If there were to be any new terrorist attack then fall back to TTHH policy was warranted but in the absence of, at least any apparent absence of Pakistan reverting to anti-India terrorist policy, how should your TTHH reassessment be read?

"I have been thinking about asking if in the wake of OBL killing will there be any possibility of Pak Army/ISI snubbing MMS's initiative and encouraging the jihadi terrorists to bleed India - part of its tactic to redeem the lost honor (US violating its sovereignty) and at the same time reassuring the jihadi constituency that ISI hasn't changed its policies?"

MY REPLY

My suggestion has always been to keep the capability for exercising the intermediate option available while even going out of the way to improve relations with Pakistan.Let me explain my policy once again:

1. We have to talk to Pakistan. Engage with Pakistan at different levels---political, military,intelligence, economic, people to people etc

2.With both becoming nuclear powers, the military option is out of the question. The military option should be only as a last resort when national existence is in peril.

3. We should have an intermediate option of covert action available if talks fail to make headway and Pakistan continues to use terrorism.

After 26/11, many think tanks of the world were of the view that another 26/11 cannot be avoided because India has not created for itself an intermediate option between the political and the military. There is no deterrence to more terrorism in the form of an intermediate option. I keep pleading: For God's sake, create that covert deterrence.

Unfortunately, in India, we do not have the culture of strategic analysis. One has to repeat the same point again and again and again.One feels tired.

Thanks for writing. Take care. B.Raman

7 comments:

Paresh said...

Today, Pakistan is cornered. It has tremendous pressure from the US, Europe, India and its own population, to cleanse itself of its most strategic weapon - terrorism!

Under these circumstances, it has lost the world's sympathy and is on the verge of a nervous breakdown. It is afraid.

China is its only saving grace. But even it cannot overtly support Pakistan beyond a certain limit due to international spotlight on Pakistan's mischief.

The only option Pakistan can see to redeem itself is to get India to start a war with it. This will immediately remove the negative World spotlight over it and will infact help it to turn around the world's sympathy towards itself. China will be able to assist it openly and by threatening the NATO supply routes into Afghanistan due to the war with India, the US and Europe, which are currently baying for its blood, will on the contrary stand behind Pakistan against India! Suddenly Pakistan will once again be the blue eyed boy of the world with India the new villian, thus removing all pressure from the Pak Army ISI.

Hence the increased firing and cease fire violations on the Indo-Pak border. India is doing good by remaining maturely patient and calm just now. From news paper reports I can sense that India is gathering international support and is building up its war machine for a war in the near future. But it is important for the citizens not to be too hyperactive but trust the Government to handle the situation maturely.

Krishna Kacker said...

International relations are based on all types of action Sama,Dana,Dand and Bhed as per our ancesters.This has to be used as the moment demands but all have to ultimate fit into the grand design of national interest.We must talk and also be prepared to hit where it hurts most.Sometimes slow bleeding is more effective as Pakistan proved in Kashmir.
Presently, our national interest requires US to continue to be active in Afghanistan to keep the Pak influence under check even though it is doubtful if it will ever succeed in its aim there.

Arun said...

Sir, can you be please more specific on what you mean by 'Covert Deterrence'..

traveller4life said...

Do you really believe Pakistan would use the nuclear option if Indian forces penetrate into its territory by say 30 - 50 km? Do you really think the generals with plush retirement vilas and families in Karachi would risk it all by going nuclear. I seriously think Pakistan is taking us for a fool by continuously hanging the nuclear dagger. We are of course happy to be fooled...

Sravan said...

Sir,
Are the U.S willingly closing their eyes on Pakistan?
What about U.S ambassadors to India are they blind too?
Wil anythinh like the Blood Telegram shift the balance toward India?

kuldeep singh chauhan said...

China is a long term threat to India and has been trying to encircle by cultivating opportunistic alliances and footholds in the region. The move in POK and northern areas is alarming and in long term would have implications for the whole regional security architechture in Asia. China is not supposed to dump pakistan in near future and would leaverage and coordinate with it to put pressure on india and bind it to low level equillibrium. This is the right time actually now is the time for india to premptly attack pakistan quickly neutralise it’s nuclear infrastructure with israeli help and dismember it. This will pave a long future of prosperity not only for india and south asia but for whole world. All well meaning people globally should think about it and through internet and various media create a movement to dismember pakistan and save world peace.
http://kuldeepsinghchouhan.blogspot.com/

kuldeep singh chauhan said...

China is a long term threat to India and has been trying to encircle by cultivating opportunistic alliances and footholds in the region. The move in POK and northern areas is alarming and in long term would have implications for the whole regional security architechture in Asia. China is not supposed to dump pakistan in near future and would leaverage and coordinate with it to put pressure on india and bind it to low level equillibrium. This is the right time actually now is the time for india to premptly attack pakistan quickly neutralise it’s nuclear infrastructure with israeli help and dismember it. This will pave a long future of prosperity not only for india and south asia but for whole world. All well meaning people globally should think about it and through internet and various media create a movement to dismember pakistan and save world peace.
http://kuldeepsinghchouhan.blogspot.com/