Nuclear Deal and National Security

The recent NSG Waiver has generated a lot of political heat. The attention has momentarily shifted because of the Delhi Bomb Blasts but the Nuclear Deal will surely become the hot topic soon particularly when the Indian Prime Minister travels to Washington on 24th September. It is widely expected that the US Congress will have given its approval for the deal paving way for the singing ceremony during the Indian PM’s visit.

The prophets of doom have been crying foul at the top of their voice citing a whole spectrum of reasons to oppose the deal. While there is some substance in some of the issues raised, at the same time it was amusing to find some absolutely ridiculous objections.

Pokharan-II

Pokhran-II

One of the major objections raised by the opponents of the deal is that India will not be able to conduct a nuclear test and therefore our national security would be compromised. This is a really funny objection raised by those who have no idea what a nuclear test is all about. They don’t understand that there is a scientific purpose of conducting a nuclear test. The purpose is to generate sufficient data for further defence research. Pokhran I and II were conducted with this purpose in mind. It is important to note that India on its own declared a unilateral moratorium on further tests. This moratorium was declared because the nuclear scientists believed that they had generated sufficient data from Pokhran-II and no further physical tests were required because the data available would facilitate a realistic simulation of nuclear test. It is important to note that none of the other advanced nuclear countries are conducting any fresh nuclear tests because they have enough data from the past test to conduct realistic simulations. If this is true in the case of India then why should we believe that our defence research would be jeopardised because of the nuclear deal. Some opponents of the deal have pointed out that if Pakistan or China conducts a nuclear test in future we will be forced to respond to it by conducting nuclear tests. This is really funny; a nuclear test is a scientific exercise and not an equivalent of a return fire. We won’t become safer by conducting nuclear tests in retaliation. Our nuclear deterrent is the number of nuclear warheads we have and not the nuclear tests. While it is true that in addition to the scientific purpose a nuclear test also proves the nuclear ability of a country, but having successfully conducted two tests, our nuclear capability is already proven and accepted.

It is estimated that India has around 140 nuclear warheads while Pakistan has around 60 and China has around 400. A nuclear bomb is such a deadly weapon that no country in the world would ever get a chance to use even a small fraction of these numbers. For example, even if Pakistan had 5 bombs, it would have been enough deterrent for India. The number of bombs beyond a small number really doesn’t count. Further, the Nuclear Deal doesn’t stop India from making more bombs. In today’s world, what is more important is to have an effective command and control structure and a good weapon delivery system. The nuclear deal doesn’t prevent us from developing more advanced weapon delivery systems, a research that is coupled with our space program. The nuclear deal doesn’t affect our space program at all.

The real issue on the Nuclear Deal is not really related to national security. The real issue is economic feasibility. I will write about this in another post.

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Comments

  • Neel288  On September 16, 2008 at 11:28 pm

    It is capabilities, and not intentions of any nation, that forms the basis of military preparedness of another nation. Pakistan has the capability to nuke India, hence India must have an answer to that, no matter if the nuke devices are ever used or not.
    However India should make it clear to the world that in the event of any nuke attack on its land, Indian retaliation would not be limited to Pakistan alone. Most of the muslim nations within India’s reach including Saudi Arabia ( the Pak financier ) , Bangladesh, Egypt, Libya, UAE etc that are perceived to be pro Pak and anti India, would be vapourized in no time !!

  • virtualopinion  On September 17, 2008 at 3:31 am

    Dear Neel,

    Thanks for visiting my blog and also for your comment.

    Although, the action that you are suggesting is not feasible but still – do you realise that there are millions of Indians living in the other countries which you named. Would you like to wipe them out too?

  • Renjith Nair  On September 19, 2008 at 9:31 am

    Prime Minister Manmohan Singh just got a weapon “A CAMOUFLAGE NUCLEAR DEAL” to distract the public from the fallout of his Government.He and His Boss Sonia bluffs India Remain poorest country because we didn’t have this nuclear deal!!! and it will solve the entire problem we are facing!!!! Like Indira Gandhi…Sonia believes as long as India remain illeterate Congress can SOW and HARVEST.In the coming election the SEED IS THIS CAMOUFLAGE NUCLEAR DEAL!!!.

    USA will lick as long as one being obedient to them otherwise they will suck.Their legacy proves that.They armed BIN LADEN against USSR and now they fights Laden.They armed IRAN in 80’s and today IRAN is a rogue nation for them! They armed SADDAM and what was the fate of SADDAM?? Look at Pakistan what is happening now,they prospered Islamic terrorism against USSR in Afghanistan and Now they fight Pakistan in Afghan Border. Remember what had happened in KOSOVO.what had happened in Vietnam.What will be the fate of our connexion??? only USA knows!!
    REALITY BITES!!! BEWARE!!!

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