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Defence and Security
The Indian armed forces may be headed for a more streamlined system of reporting and decision making with the possible appointment of a chief of defence staff (CDS). Mint reported on Monday that Lt. Gen Praveen Bakshi was the likely choice.  
 

The unseemly controversy concerning the appointment of Lt Gen Bipin Rawat as the next Army Chief is hopefully past. Time is now upon us to examine what his main challenges are going to be. In all probability, he will have a three-year tenure which is a good duration to produce results.

The unseemly controversy concerning the appointment of Lt Gen Bipin Rawat as the next Army Chief is hopefully past. Time is now upon us to examine what his main challenges are going to be. In all probability, he will have a three-year tenure which is a good duration to produce results.

 

Of all the dimensions of modern warfare, the “battle of the mind” takes precedence. If we cannot win the challenge this poses, all other dimensions that support warfare like technology, armaments, strategy, tactics, will have a limited effect. In the final analysis, a positive mind is an imperative that will drive the brawn to do the unachievable

Of all the dimensions of modern warfare, the “battle of the mind” takes precedence. If we cannot win the challenge this poses, all other dimensions that support warfare like technology, armaments, strategy, tactics, will have a limited effect. In the final analysis, a positive mind is an imperative that will drive the brawn to do the unachievable

 
The areas that constituted Pakistan in 1947 were ruled by the British under different arrangements. Bengal, Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (then 'NWFP') were provinces with elected assemblies. Balochistan was governed by an appointed Commissioner; tribal areas by Political Agents; and a number of so-called princely states by Rajas under the paramountcy of the British Crown.   
 

Come New Year, India will have a new Chief of Army Staff (COAS), as the incumbent, General Dalbir Singh, is due for retirement. The very fact that the central government is yet to announce his successor has already made news. In fact, the issue will only get further politicised, just the same way Dalbir Singh's appointment was, two years ago. And it's all because of a convention that the incoming COAS (or for that matter, the new chief of Indian Navy or Indian Air Force) be announced two months in advance, in order to make the transition smooth.

 

Shipyard accidents happen, so perhaps it’s wrong to make too much of last week’s unprecedented toppling in a Mumbai dockyard of the guided-missile frigate INS Betwa, which killed two sailors and could leave one of India’s warships unsalvageable. But given the frequency with which the Indian navy is experiencing similar mishaps, the incident is a reminder that New Delhi has far to go if it’s to project credible power across the Indo-Pacific.

 

It took almost 11 years for India’s Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers to build the Brahmaputra-class (Project 16A) full-load (displacement 4,521-tonne) frigate INS Betwa, which was commissioned into the Indian Navy on July 7, 2004. Thereafter, it took more than 12 years for the same ship to tumble (or “tilt-sink”) in a Mumbai dry dock, killing and wounding sailors

It took almost 11 years for India’s Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers to build the Brahmaputra-class (Project 16A) full-load (displacement 4,521-tonne) frigate INS Betwa, which was commissioned into the Indian Navy on July 7, 2004. Thereafter, it took more than 12 years for the same ship to tumble (or “tilt-sink”) in a Mumbai dry dock, killing and wounding sailors

 

For long, air crashes in the Indian Air Force, which continue to occur with monotonous regularity, has become an ‘accepted’ norm. For the past decade the Navy’s warship and submarine fleet is being afflicted with alarming regularity by a malady of mishaps, some of which are among most horrific and unusual in the world.

 
It is accepted conventional wisdom the world over, ever since well-known military theorist, Carl Von Clausewitz, first articulated the aphorism in the late 18th century that “war is a continuation of politics by other means”.  
 
India had not sought the 1971 War. It was a conflict that was imposed on India by Pakistan and its bumbling generals. In the end, it became — and, remains — the perfect example of  statecraft, with a national leadership displaying the requisite  competence and self-assurance, optimally mobilising the nation’s intellectual, bureaucratic, diplomatic and defence resources, to accomplish the intended goals.  
 


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Review
 
 
 
 
spotlight image India’s Vice President Mohammed Hamid Ansari visited Armenia recently to celebrate 25 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries.
 
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Pakistan said on July 27 that India's stipulation for granting visa to Pakistani nationals were "highly regrettable" and was against diplomatic norms.
 
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In dispatching its  PLA (Peoples Liberation Army)  marines to Djibuti in the Horn of Africa on Wednesday (July 12 ) by amphibious ships, from the southern port of Zhanjiang, China has taken a significant step in enhancing its  trans-border military footprint.
 
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In the last few weeks , spokesman of Government of China have been issuing several statements and  making observations against India that sound like war cry. 1962 war between India and China was mentioned , as a reminder to India of the happenings then, which virtually amount to a warning that events of 1962  could be repeate
 
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Images of Kashmiri separatists walking the corridors of the Prime Minister’s office during Atal Behari Vajpayee’s tenure have been replaced with visuals of Hurriyat Conference leaders being arrested and taken into custody by a central agency.
 
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As Aadhaar becomes the norm in India, and gets skewered for the involuntary nature of its imposition, our northern neighbours, as is their wont, want to do a number that will make this appear benign.
 
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On July 18, the global media carried stories of how Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Naif was ousted from his position and replaced by his cousin, deputy crown prince Mohammed bin Salman.
 
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The alliance that defeated the militant Islamic State group in Mosul was unusual. Fighting alongside the Iraqi army were not only US forces but also Iran-backed militias.
 
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S.T. Lee Distinguished Lecture of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, Singapore on "India, ASEAN and Changing Geopolitics”
 
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Interview with Hudson Institute’s Aparna Pande, whose book From Chanakya to Modi: Evolution of India’s Foreign Policy, was released on June 17.

 
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This is the continuing amazing spiritual journey of a Muslim man from Kerala who plunged into Vedic religion after a chance encounter with a Hindu mystic under a jackfruit tree in the backyard of his house when he was just nine. It is a story w...

 
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History is told by the victors but in our modern age, even contemporary events get - or are given - a slant, where some contributors soon get eclipsed from the narrative or their images tarnished.

 
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Humans have long had a fear of malignant supernatural beings but there may be times when even the latter cannot compare with the sheer evil and destructiveness mortals may be capable of. But then seeking to enable the end of the world due to it...

 
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Title: Reporting Pakistan; Author: Meena Menon; Publisher: Viking/Penguin Random House; Pages: 340; Price: Rs 599

 
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