So this above tweet landed up on my TL yesterday. Prompted me to share some thoughts on the recent spate of statements from Pakistan, threatening pre-emptive use of tactical nukes against Indian forces even as they might be in their barracks / staging areas. Here goes.
Firstly regarding the preferred delivery mode – the Nasr missile. With a diameter of just about 30cm,I find it laughable that Pakistan actually has a working bomb of such dimensions. I may be wrong out here, but would be willing to hedge my bets on this account due to the fact that they’ve not tested since 1998, and are working at best, on unproven designs.
Secondly, despite a stated first use policy, they’ve been silent on what constitutes their red lines. In case of a stand-off that might play out on lines of Op Parakram, wherein strike elements actually moved in close to borders, a pre-emptive use by a panicked field commander might lead to a bloody war instead.
Thirdly, in case a Pakistan justifies a pre-emptive strike on account of a threat in being of an Indian attack, can the same premise – an imminent nuclear strike, as proclaimed by Pak – not be used as a premise for a ‘pre-emptive retaliatory strike’ by India, as part of its NFU doctrine?
Fourthly, if Pakistan Army truly believes that even a dozen sub kiloton nukes can actually stop the might of Indian strike forces, they are going to be in for a rude shock. They know it too. And if they don’t, well
@bennedose explains it quite well in this video below
That brings us to the next question – ‘What Next?’
Stated Indian Nuclear Doctrine doesn’t differentiate between tactical nukes or any other type of nukes. Massive retaliation is the response that will visit them soon thereafter. Given a military machine which has such strong survival instincts that it is not beyond sacrificing its own pimps in AfPak & elsewhere, or even disown its own soldiers in Kargil, to expect Pak Army to risk its very existence is a fallacy.
Lastly and most importantly, is the reqmt of making the sponsors of Pak nuclear pgme pay in case nukes gifted by them to Pak (Ref Lop Nor, May 1983 – Para 14 here: http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/pakistan/nuke.htm …). Here’s a screenshot from that, even though the entire report is a highly recommended read:-
Nothing fancy, but just an ‘innocent’ statement to this effect by one of the many semi-govt ‘loudmouths’ in reply to such statements from Pak would surely raise hackles in a LOT of world capitals. Given blatant nuclear proliferation in arming their cat’s paw, they too deserve ‘some’ anxiety atleast, given that India is forced to live with a nuclear armed mad man at its doors.
Talking about ‘Cat’s Paws’, had put out a BLOG post some days back about China engaging Indian security apparatus by its hired lackeys. May have a look.
But coming back to the topic at hand, once we have atleast a half dozen or so Arihant class boats prowling the seas with an assured second/third strike package, perhaps then the nuke benefactors will feel some bit of ‘anxiety’ that I talked about earlier.
Bottomline – Nuclear sabre rattling is just like riding a tiger. Nukes are NOT to be used in a war, unless it is the ‘very last’ war this world sees. Don’t do it. Tomorrow a rabid, brainwashed population may not leave you with a way out. Then you will have no where to hide.
(Talking about ‘brainwashed population’, THIS three part blog series chronicles some interesting facts).