9 July 2018

Democracy and India’s Foreign Policy


In 1950, the year the Republic of India came into being, Jawaharlal Nehru told his fellow parliamentarians that India “stood not only for progressive democracy in our own country but also in other countries … it has consistently been part of our policy in distant quarters of the world” (Muni 2009: 25). In recent decades, we have seen even greater emphasis on India’s identity as a democracy. In 2005, India’s then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh exhorted, “liberal democracy is the natural order of political organisation in today’s world. All alternate systems, authoritarian and majoritarian in varying degrees, are an aberration.”1 By affirming “India’s identity as the world’s largest democracy,” it has been suggested that policymakers were “breaking from post-Nehruvian Third Worldism” (Mohan 2015: 142). External actors too, often for strategic motives of their own, have drawn greater attention to India’s political system as a factor that should shape Delhi’s foreign policy choices.

Islam in India’s soft power

BY Sukh Deo Muni

Religion is an important component of the soft power countries use in their foreign policy. Yet, no Indian government has given Islam adequate prominence, especially in its interactions with South-East Asia, where the majority of people are Muslim Countries have been deploying soft power[1] in the conduct of their foreign policy and diplomacy well before the term was coined by Joseph S. Nye. ‘Soft power’ consists of a whole range of tools: the use of medical facilities, education and language learning, food festivals, cinema and other art forms, diasporas, support for electoral procedures – and religion, a key component. States with a religious identity invoke it where required in their external engagements. Some countries have even forged regional groupings on this basis, such as the Organisation of Islamic Countries.

China targets India’s Ladakh

BY Sameer Patil

Click here to view our repository on the Arc of India’s Border Security.

On June 19, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), the ruling coalition in Jammu & Kashmir state, ended their three-year partnership. The state is now under governor’s rule until alternative arrangements can be made or fresh assembly elections are called. The BJP’s General Secretary, Ram Madhav, said that “resentment in Jammu and Ladakh regions has been growing over lack of proper development and progress and also a perceptible sense of discrimination.”

Pakistan General Elections July 2018 Subverted by the Army-Judiciary Nexus

By Dr Subhash Kapila

Pakistan General Elections July 2018 could have been a defining moment in Pakistan’s political history of a back-to-back democratic transfer of power through the ballot box. But all portents available a month prior to General Elections 2018 suggest that this would be a farcical exercise as Pakistan Army-Judiciary nexus has contrived a political vacuum facilitating Imran Khan to emerge as their preferred winner. With just about three weeks remaining for the July 2018 General Elections to take place the Pakistan Army has set in motion the unrestrained levers of power at its disposal to ensure the political field in the General Elections is left open for PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s assured victory. This is in addition to the political disqualification of Former PM Nawaz and also ruling that all decisions taken by him while in power stood nullified.

CHINA MILITARY EXPANSION PLANS REVEALED AS NEW WARSHIPS LAUNCHED

BY DAVID BRENNAN

Chinese plans to expand the country's regional power projection have been revealed by leaked internal military documents, indicating that Beijing is expanding its armed forces to protect its interests around the globe. The documents came to light as the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) navy launched two advanced warships designed for surface warfare, long-range air defense and anti-submarine operations, as the country's naval modernization continues apace. The leaked document—obtained by the Kyodo News agency—was published by the Chinese Central Military Commission in February. As detailed by The Japan Times, it notes increasing friction in the East and South China Sea and heightened tensions with the U.S. and neighboring states.

China & Russia In The Arctic: Axis Of Ambivalence

SYDNEY J. FREEDBERG JR.

STIMSON CENTER: China and Russia are working together ever more closely in the Arctic, exploiting a policy vacuum in the US, an international panel of experts said here. But Sino-Russian cooperation is almost entirely commercial, focused on trade routes, offshore oil, telecommunications (most satellites don’t cover the Arctic), and tourism. A military alliance is unlikely given Russia’s deep ambivalence about China’s growing influence in general and their very different views on who should run the Arctic in particular: the eight circumpolar countries alone — including both Russia and the US — or a larger group that includes self-declared “near-Arctic” nations like China.

Trump’s North Korea diplomacy aims to contain China

Brahma Chellaney

U.S. President Donald Trump, by seeking to clinch a deal directly with Pyongyang, is attempting to effectively cut out the traditional middleman, China. Beijing’s growing anxieties over the engagement between Washington and Pyongyang have prompted it to host North Korean strongman Kim Jong Un for the third time in less than three months. In fact, the White House has already eroded China’s role as an essential conduit in U.S. diplomacy with Pyongyang by establishing direct connections, including a virtual hotline, to Kim, while Chinese President Xi Jinping has no hotline with him.

Trump's weak case against China


BEIJING -- No one wins in a trade war. Yet U.S. President Donald Trump seems determined to pursue one with China, which he accuses of causing America's trade deficit, violating World Trade Organization rules, and using unfair practices to acquire foreign technology. While most economists marvel at Trump's ignorance of how trade balances work, many broadly agree with his charges regarding intellectual property (IP). But the evidence supporting these claims is also weak, at best.

Is China a global leader in research and development?


Research and Development (R&D) is the backbone of innovation. It supports the development of new products and services, which have the potential to touch all aspects of modern life, in the ways that personal computers and smart phones have and that artificial intelligence and robotics are expected to in the near future. In a global community built on technology, how countries leverage their R&D efforts has a profound impact on their economic prosperity and the quality of life enjoyed by their citizens.

Letting Europe Go Its Own Way

By Sven Biscop
The Case for Strategic Autonomy

The Trump administration seems to believe that allies are meant to pay and obey. When it comes to Europe, this may pose a problem. During the Cold War, what was good for the United States was good for Western Europe. But in a multipolar world in which multiple powers are competing and cooperating with each other, this is not always the case. In June 2016, the EU adopted a new Global Strategy that formally called for strategic autonomy—the ability to pursue its own interests without being constrained by other states. This went mostly unnoticed in Washington, as many EU documents do, but after the election of U.S. President Donald Trump, the divide between American and European priorities and interests has become more apparent. 

Why Can’t Europe Create Tech Giants Like the U.S. and China?


In a region with a comparable economy to the U.S. and with some of the best pools of mathematicians, computer scientists, and software developers in the world, one might expect a European tech giant similar to the likes of America’s Facebook, Amazon, or Google or China’s Alibaba. The most significant explanation is likely the lack of scale in funding for tech firms. The largest American and Asian tech companies founded since 2000 averaged around $7.3 billion in funds raised. European equivalents raised only $1.6 billion. This gap is slowly started to decrease as more European companies reach the $200 million per year funding threshold. Two additional explanations, however, contribute in a less measurable way when comparing Europe and Silicon Valley. The latter has been credited with creating a culture of mentorship and support that is lacking in places like London and Paris. Another reason is the interaction with employees; in the U.S. employees are often motivated by stock-option systems that connect them strongly to the success of the company. Lastly, there are major questions concerning tech giants and privacy concerns in an ecosystem with strong data protection laws that have already targeted U.S. tech companies.

TAP Pipeline: Look Who’s Switching Off The Gas This Time – Analysis

By Roxana Andrei

Europe has been long preoccupied by the security of its gas supplies. The need to secure its import of hydrocarbons has been widely politicized and thus linked to hostile relations with major suppliers, namely with Russia. The fear of Russia switching off the gas tap Russia has overwhelmingly fueled the arguments of some European countries, mostly the newer EU member states that emerged from the former communist bloc, against new Russian pipeline projects. Pressure for developing alternative supply routes and the search for new suppliers, such as Azerbaijan, has intensified and led to a new natural gas supply project to Europe, bypassing Russia: the Southern Gas Corridor.

Commentary: Western armies are losing their high-tech edge

Peter Apps
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When America goes to war, its soldiers, sailors and pilots typically have long been used to having a spectacular technological edge. From the South China Sea to Eastern Europe – and even the Korean Peninsula – U.S. commanders are now considering the prospect of war against enemies who may be capable of deploying overwhelming firepower and sophisticated new technology. Confrontations with Russia and China in particular are escalating far faster than predicted – with the realistic prospect either nation could outgun U.S. forces in their immediate neighborhood in the early stages of any conflict. The Pentagon is increasingly worried about rapid proliferation of Chinese and Russian anti-ship and anti-aircraft missile systems, putting U.S. military planners in an unfamiliar position. The last time U.S. forces went to war without an overwhelming advantage was against Nazi German troops in North Africa in 1943.

How this one Pentagon office could wage war without oversight

by Bonnie Kristian

U.S. Cyber Command — the Defense Department’s cyberspace wing newly elevated to the status of a Unified Combatant Command — is not what it used to be. This Pentagon entity has operated without much congressional oversight, but with an ambitious and aggressive understanding of its mandate. This is constitutionally suspect and a recipe for trouble. Permanently founded less than a decade ago, the command previously operated in a mostly defensive posture, warding off digital threats and only occasionally going on the offensive, most notably to attack an Iranian nuclear facility and to target the Islamic State. But this spring, the Pentagon authorized the Cyber Command to move into an even more aggressive role. Cyber Command is now empowered to conduct “constant, disruptive ‘short of war’ activities,” targeting terrorists and foreign countries alike, the New York Times reports.

How the Blockchain Can Transform Government


The blockchain is one of the most significant, fundamental advances in digital platforms since the internet and also probably the most overhyped technology in current times, according to Kevin Werbach, Wharton professor of legal studies and business ethics, at the inaugural annual Penn Wharton Budget Model Spring Policy Forum, held recently in Washington. “In many ways, the parallels are striking,” said Werbach, who worked at the Federal Communications Commission in the late 1990s during the dot-com boom. “This is a new infrastructure baseline technology that can lead to lots of benefits — also, it has lots of problems. Blockchain is now the source of a great deal of fraud, of illegal activity and regulatory arbitrage, but it is also sparking innovation across the world in all sorts of areas.”

How the Army will infuse cyber operations on the battlefield

By: Mark Pomerleau 
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Imagine a brigade combat team readying an assault on a small town in Eastern Europe. As part of the planning, cyber and electromagnetic activities (CEMA) staff recommend knocking out Wi-Fi connections in the town to prevent residents and forces from communicating prior to or during the operation. Today, planners must submit a request for such capabilities through their higher echelons, which slows down the operation. But the Army is experimenting with how to insert these capabilities at lower levels to accelerate decision-making. The pilot, sponsored by Army Cyber Command, is called CEMA Support to Corps and Below (CSCB). The program, now in its eighth rotation at combat training centers, is testing a concept of expeditionary cyber teams (ECT), an added element that includes new offensive and defensive planners on the brigade staff and offensive operators that will travel with the tactical maneuver forces, typically at the company level.

Introduction: The great missile defense dilemma

By John Mecklin

Driven by varying (mis)perceptions of the motives and technological capabilities of their adversaries, major nuclear powers are pursuing their own versions of missile defenses – and a great variety of ways to defeat them through maneuverable missiles, decoys, and other missile defense penetration aids. In this issue, we look at this expensive and ineffective – yet potentially destabilizing – international pursuit of missile defense with the help of an extraordinary lineup of the world’s top missile defense experts:

Is Cyber the Perfect Weapon?

JOSEPH S. NYE
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For years, political leaders have warned of the danger of a “Cyber Pearl Harbor.” Thus far, however, cyber weapons seem to be oversold, more useful for signaling or sowing confusion than for physical destruction. CAMBRIDGE – For years, political leaders such as former US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta have warned of the danger of a “cyber Pearl Harbor.” We have known for some time that potential adversaries have installed malicious software in our electricity grid. Suddenly the power could go out in large regions, causing economic disruption, havoc, and death. Russia used such an attack in December 2015 in its hybrid warfare against Ukraine, though for only a few hours. Earlier, in 2008, Russia used cyber attacks to disrupt the government of Georgia’s efforts to defend against Russian troops.

How the ballooning federal debt threatens U.S. defense

Dan Keeler
“American economic might is the indispensable foundation of American military might and the essential element in our ability to project a stabilizing power worldwide.” – President Dwight D. Eisenhower 

On June 18, the Senate passed its version of 2019 defense authorization bill. Continuing the recent trend of raising defense spending, the bill proposes an $82 billion increase from 2017, resulting in an overall total defense budget of $716 billion. In an unusually bipartisan sign of cooperative government, these congressional budgets fully support the president and secretary of defense’s recently released National Defense and Military Strategies. Both of these documents prioritize “great power competition” with Russia and China over other issues, and the new budgets allocate national resources to meet the demands of those documents.

The fake internet the Army uses to train cyberwarriors

By: Mark Pomerleau 
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As the service incorporates social media into its training, Army leaders are exploring how to monitor and better use the social media platform in a modern conflict. To that end, the National Training Center at Fort Irwin has established a mock internet during training rotations for brigades. “We have our own kind of social media events here. We don’t have Twitter but we have ‘Tweeter,’” Brig. Gen. Jeff Broadwater, commander of Fort Irwin and the National Training Center, told C4ISRNET during a recent visit.