Remembering Kargil and strengthening national security
It is 15 years since the Kargil war was fought wherein our brave soldiers evicted Pakistani intrusions. While we salute the brave soldiers for their utmost sacrifices in the cause of national security, the country’s leadership has to seriously introspect on how it has espoused the cause of the brave soldier, not just fighting in extreme climates, but also assisting in major relief works. The soldier has been responding to the call of duty without flinching a bit, but the powers that be are going slow on modernisation of the armed forces.
We pay tribute to the Indian soldier. The former Army Chief, General V.P. Malik who was leading the Indian Army then had stated ‘We will fight with whatever we have’. The General recalls how the war, codenamed ‘Operation Vijay’ was fought and what the lessons from Kargil remain. India needs a holistic national security review as well as re-thinking on the nature of conflict in the new strategic environment and conduct of wars.
General (Retd) Malik and Lt General (Retd) P.C. Katoch in separate articles have indicated that the Kargil War was not the first time when Pakistan initiated a war. And we must not assume that it would be the last time. India will remain vulnerable to such threats along its disputed borders unless it builds a credible will and capability to deter and dissuade its adversaries. An enduring lesson of Kargil War is that for national security, sound defence enables sound foreign policies. The nation and its armed forces can hope for the best; but they must remain prepared for the worst.
We are proud that recently China invited SP Guide Publications to be part of the Indian media delegation to China on a familiarisation trip. Lt General (Retd) Katoch was part of the delegation representing SP Guide Publications. The delegation held wide-ranging discussions on India-China relationship, border disputes, trade, etc. Though at the interactions, Chinese delegates said they were keen on peace in the region and that China will not attack, unless attacked, these are statements which can be argued.
India now has a new Army Chief. In this issue, we have an article on the agenda for General Dalbir Singh, the new Army Chief wherein the author mentions how all the three chiefs of the armed forces who now have a monthly meeting with the Prime Minister need to be forthright in their views, including the need to integrate military in all decision making.
Also, we have highlighted the three nation ‘Malabar Exercise’ involving the navies of India, USA and Japan. In another article, we have an expert analysis on the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH-17 and what might have caused it.
At the time of going to the press, the US Secretary of State, John Kerry is visiting India and has held discussions with the Prime Minister and other ministers, indicative of how the relationship is going to be strengthened with the impending visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the US and other such exchanges. We will be carrying a detailed report on the developments that have taken place during Kerry’s visit.
All this along with a slew of regular columns… Happy reading!