Colonel Anil Athale (Retd)
Two points make the 2009 electoral verdict very satisfactory-for one, there is a clear mandate and the govt would be stable. Secondly, the resounding defeat of the Chinese Party of India (Marxist)-(expanded version of CPI (M)) augurs well for us to clearly focus on the long term threat and inimical actions of our Northern neighbour. But true to form, the media and the public as large is focussed on the economic issue while the security issues, as usual take a back seat. This is an attempt to rectify that imbalance.
One common factor in all these events is that the heat began to be turned on precisely at the time when Indian decision making went in a limbo. It was widely expected that there would be hung parliament and a weak government. Thanks to the Indian voter’s legendary sagacity, that has not happened and there is a clear mandate.
In international relations there are very few accidents and the
bunching of these anti
In 1962 the Chinese attack on us followed the Cuban missile crisis
to the last dot. The attack took place when the missiles were detected in
It is time we have to give a very serious consideration to our nuclear posture of no first strike. The govt must order a through review of all the options.
The 26/11 attack showed up multiple failures at various levels. The navy, coast guard, the army units in Mumbai, the police and delay in NSG arrival. It is time a closed door independent enquiry is ordered to pin point the flaws and rectify them. We owe it to the victims of that horrible massacre if we wish to avoid a repeat in future. The aim should be rectification of the systems and not witch hunting. An in house departmental enquiry can never be impartial and would fail to bring out the truth. Now that the elections are over, this ought to be the first priority of the new govt.
It is time
Indians have a re-look at the ‘Indira Doctrine’ of
1980s, essentially a policy of hands off for foreigners in the Indian
The build up of military power takes time and cannot be created in an emergency. The process has to be medium to long term. As the official historian of the 1962 India-China border war, one is reminded of an incident.
The Indian army fought the Chinese in 1962 with the First World War vintage Lee Enfield bolt action rifles, the kind that the Policemen continue to carry todate! The army’s request for automatic rifles was stuck in the red tape and govt apathy. On 10 November, after the drubbing received in Towang sector, the govt woke up and the Americans began their military aid. 7.62 Semi Automatic rifles, in their crates and with protective grease, were airdropped on the hapless troops in Dirangzong area of Arunachal Pradesh. Nobody told the Babus and the Netas that induction of new weapon takes atleast a year or two to train the men in handling it…………..All that we ended up doing was to gift brand new rifles to the Chinese………………..
If we do not anticipate and prepare BEFORE the threat manifests, we may well end up like in 1962. Many political commentators have been hailing Dr ManMohan Singh as only the second PM after Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru to have got re-elected after a full term ……..like Nehru in 1962. But come October 1962, and the Chinese attacked us. Nehru was never the same again. While the PM basks in glory of being only second after Nehru, this is useful reminder of pitfall of neglecting security.