Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The Comeback - Part 1

Okay, I have awakened from my deep slumber of apathy.

I had entered this state where I blamed my laziness to exercise my gray matter on a “writer’s block”. But a discussion on Vibsters blog has tickled those inactive brain cells and to say that they have been forced into overdrive is an understatement.
Some of the topics discussed got me thinking and through this post I wish to add to the discussion.

The Nuclear Arms Race.

A lot has been said and written about why going nuclear is not right and that it propagates an arms race where money is invested in acquiring state of the art arms and researching technology that will equip the warheads of these arms with rare earth radio-active metals.

Well here I will just side step and create a situation at a micro level. Lets then analyze that situation and reach a solution.

Since the average (middle class) Indian and the hapless farmer have been the stake holders in many theories built up around the nuclear arms race, let the situation be based on a not so well off farmer who owns a piece of fertile ground which has (off-late) not been yielding high returns. Much like our country in the early nineties. Now our farmer knows that if he works hard he will be able to achieve a healthy yield and probably afford good education for his children. Ohhh.. and like our country the farmer is harassed by two neighbors.

His farm land is adjacent to a landlord’s farm which is doing well but the evil landlord wants to encroach on our poor farmers land and he does this by cutting the irrigation to the farmers land which is through a canal under his control.

The other end is a colony of monkeys that feast on the crop and destroy them. So now what does this farmer do.

Solution 1
He can agree to give away a piece of land to the landlord and work out an arrangement in which he is assured of conitunous water supply and make peace with the fact that a certain percentage of his yield will be destroyed by the troublesome monkeys. Which would mean living in degraded conditions, which is cowardice and goes against the farmer’s principles of fighting for ones rights.

Solution 2
He borrows money and erects an electric fence to combat the pesky monkeys and invests in an alternative method for irrigation. Now to implement this he must cut into his household expenses like food, clothes etc. But the farmer knows that this investment shall reap healthy benefits albeit a little later.

Now I think that equipping ourselves with arms and hi-tech weapons (which I feel should be indigenously developed rather than imported) is on the same lines as Solution 2. We basically aim to achieve territorial security by investing money in them. So once we have the missiles that have a range of 2500Km and the technology to equip these missiles with rare-earth radioactive metals I say we are fairly well placed w.r.t territorial security. And contradictory to some people’s belief I think this deterrent theory works quite efficiently. Once this basic need of territorial security is sufficed the country then becomes a safe haven for economic growth. A safe country offers more opportunity for investment both domestic and foreign and its no rocket science that capital investment in agriculture, infrastructure and manufacturing sector fuels economic growth. So war torn countries will never grow because no one wants to invest in an economy, which shall be blown into pieces on the advent of another war. So I guess it is pretty evident to any person with an average IQ that socio-economic growth can only take place when a country is secure. Hence the philosophy and ideology of implementing a nation can be put in place when a country is safe.

To assess the success of the deterrent theory let us now look at the Indian Scenario. India has fought three wars. Two with Pakistan and one with the mighty China. Out of which we have lost territory in two wars and it has crippled the once flourishing tourism industry in Jammu and Kashmir. The one war in which we were successful can be attributed to the brilliant strategy implemented by the Indian Navy. It is to be noted that the missile boats used to bomb Karachi weren’t in the best of “health”, and this quote after reading a detailed article about the same at www.bharat-rakshak.com/navy . Now the Indian armed forces have acquired a lot of muscle power since then. The Sukhoi’s, MIGs, AGNI, Dhanush, Prithvi, Brahmos, Barrack and the technology to arm these with a nuclear war head. How many “WARS” has the country experienced since then. ZERO. Now some of you will throw their hands up in disapproval. “KARGIL” will be your reply. Well Kargil was a co-ordinated terrorist insurgency some what similar to the WTC incident its not a War. Many of us south of Srinagar or rather all of us south of Srinagar except those whose relatives were up north battling it out for us were going about our lives with the same routine. No emergency, no trouble. Now, if we were not supreme in land, air and sea Kargil could have been another 1971. Ahh.. yes one more point Indian Army was caught on the wrong foot with lack of technology. Our soldiers were not equipped with night vision and other gadgets which would have made it easy for them to wage war at night, and it could have possibly reduced loss of Indian lives. Again, we need money to invest to buy these gadgets and arms, and I feel that this is money well spent.

It must be pretty evident to everyone that I support the idea of India going nuclear and I feel it was money well spent. Yes money well spent, especially when you have a nuclear power who wants to claim control over Sikkim and has already eaten away the east of Jammu and Kashmir as your next door neighbour.

I am also proud of the fact that unlike the Sukhoi’s MIGs and the Barracks the nuclear program was indigenous and has equipped our scientists with the capability and the confidence to explore the feared… Fast breeder program, which has been abandoned by many developed nations. Now this brings me to my favorite topic ENERGY which will be addressed in Part 2 of the great comeback trilogy… so till then adios


At 1:01 PM, Blogger Saumya said...

What a comeback!!! By far the most convincing piece of argument I have come across on the nuke issue!! Loved you farmer example too!!!Waiting for your take on energy!!
Pls blog more often cos you have one fan in me!

At 4:35 PM, Blogger Vibha said...

ok boss!
farmer example did not work for me..
and suhas i never said anything about disbanding the Indian army...
and the fact that we have poor quality gadgets for the armed forces..is again a case in point for the kind of corruption that exists in defence deals..
as for nukes..please remember..the ramifications are much larger than your regular weapons...something which will result in the wiping out of an entire race...
I do not deny the fact that Kargil happened coz we let down our vigil...i haven't ever denied that we do not have the kindest of neighbours...
but going nuclear is just elevating the levels of risk for our own people...
and anyway...going nuclear too would only invite sanctions...if i may don the hat of the devil's advocate and make a case for FDI.

At 3:40 AM, Blogger Nitin said...

I have mixed feelings about this issue. We say that the technology for the arms are indigenous, but the truth is a small part will be developed our country. Maybe thats the core/heart of the system but we still dont have facalities to built them completely on our own. An example was when I was doing my research in Aerospace labs, I saw this plane (which looked more like a glider). I was told that this is developed in-house and its been 4 yrs since the research has been going on. Now something gives me an idea that we're not doing this right! It is possible that I dont have the whole story and much of the research is kept a secret, but we havent seen anything new but a few training air-planes which probably made news for 2 days. Also i've seen the people are not very patriotic... most have a mere baap ka kya ja raha hai attitude. One small example is citizens not respecting the National Anthem. We've seen this in school also and a recent picture showing Laloo and his wife sitting during the Anthem. I think this has to change for the clear perspective to appreciate we going nuclear or not.

I liked the farmer example and beleive that a secure country offers more growth. but if our politicians start buying rejects for spare parts in MiGs, Sukhois, etc. then there might not be a much of India left to defend. MiGs will crash after take-off and missles might drop after covering 10% of their specified distance.

I dont know whether this situation will improve. Maybe a more educated breed of politicians are emerging now. We've seen IITians make political groups. All thats left to see if more responsible and eductaed people come into play and actually make a difference.

At 4:09 PM, Blogger Suhas said...

Yes Nitin... I agree with you I have interacted with the certain depts of the Indian armed forces and yes they cut corners to some extent... (i would balme the indian way of wroking for that). But quite contrary to the evolution of the armed forces.. the nuclear est have done it indegenously. The rate at which they are progressing atleast in the non-military field is awe-inspiring despite of current despicable political scenario...

But yeah all that we wish for is built on a foundation of ethical and moral politics and a just judiciary... Which is a like asking for Utopia.. or "I want to find Atlantis... !!!"

And Vibha.. the farmer example did not work for you ... because. you simply do not wish to look into the entire scenario from a lay mans perspective.. i.e at the micro level...BTW.. India survived the sanctions imposed..and is doing very well.. and we are at a point in-time where we are forced by certain political outfits to limit the FDI.. level..

And here is an industry insight.. the US/UK/German... companies which were prevented from doing business.. with india.. continued to do so.. with gr8 sucess using different means..


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