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The War’s Cold Facts and What India Needs to Glean

Context

Hard power has started dictating the geopolitical atmosphere of the world. India’s Atmanirbhar push to Defense Industries must move into mission mode.

Relevance

GS-II: Bilateral, Regional and Global Groupings and Agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

GS-II: Effect of Policies and Politics of Developed and Developing Countries on India’s interests, Indian Diaspora.

Dimensions of the Article

  • Hard Power Expansion
  • Ukraine and India: A parallel and Divergence
  • Arms and India: West and the East
  • Need of Atmanirbhar Defense Industry
  • Way Forward

Hard Power Expansion

  • World is being increasingly being dominated by Hard Power dynamics. Israel, China, Russia, USA etc. have all made this belief even stronger.
  • Institutional mechanisms like UN, WTO, WHO etc. have weakened.
  • Recent Russia-Ukraine Crisis has brought this out in the open.
  • Russia has pressurized Ukraine into heeding to its demands via force and has not been heeding to either the warnings of the foreign states or the UN.

Ukraine and India: A Parallel and Divergence

  • Ukraine has learned that statements do not fight a war, men and material do.
  • All the criticisms of the west has not translated into military help.
  • This can initiate a soul search among other US allies and the NATO countries.
  • India experienced the same in1962 Conflict with China when Russia and the US both did not support India with military might.
  • India learnt from this and redeemed itself in 1971.
  • India has become Nuclear capable which is a big deterrent of any armed conflict in future.

Arms and India: West and the East

  • India has been importing heavy amount of arms from Russia as well as USA.
  • Russian equipments in fact account for over 85% of Indian arms.
  • USA, France, Germany and Britain too have supplied Jets, Rifles, Helicopters and what not.
  • Dependency for arms may not go down well for India’s Strategic Autonomy in the Defense Sector.
  • With Hard Power becoming the global norm of geopolitical engagement, it is all the more important to reduce dependency on imports.

Need of Atmanirbhar Defense Industry

  • India is sandwiched between two hostile neighbours and needs its defenses to be strong.
  • India faces various challenges in regard to terrorism, militancy and insurgency which also would require weapons.
  • Import dependency would mean India could bear the brunt of geopolitical fallout just like Ukraine.
  • India needs to push its Defense Industry self-sufficiency on mission mode.

Way Forward

“There is no finer teacher of war than war”, said Mao. Hard Power becoming the new imperative means India can’t afford a laid back attitude. It needs to strengthen its domestic capabilities to make sure that its Hard Power dynamics remain strong. Atmanirbhar push to Defense Sector is a god step ahead which should be thrusted upon further.

Source – The Hindu

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September 2022
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