Ali Ahmed

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  • Ali Ahmed was Research Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile

    Children of Abraham at War: Clash of Messianic Militarisms, by Talmiz Ahmad Delhi, Aakar Books, 2010, 475 pp., Rs 1250, ISBN 978-93-5002-080-7

    Talmiz Ahmad is an Indian Foreign Service officer who has seen extensive service in West Asia. It is apparent his long stint there gave him an opportunity to observe, learn and reflect. The book is an outcome. His thesis is that there has been considerable influence of historical and cultural factors in their interplay on the contemporary situation in West Asia, explained best by his choice of title for his book.

    September 2011

    Elevate Human Rights as the Core Organising Principle in Counter Insurgency

    The Indian Army’s Doctrine for Sub Conventional Operations does an admirable job in balancing human rights protection with operational demands. However, there is a degree of dissonance in the approach to human rights brought about by the perspective that protecting human rights is a means to an end.

    November 14, 2011

    A Consideration of Sino-Indian Conflict

    There is considerable interest in a possible conflict with China. However, little discussion exists in the open domain on conflict possibilities. This Brief attempts to fill this gap by dilating upon conflict scenarios along the spectrum of conflict. It brings out the need for limitation to conflict and the necessity for a grand strategic approach towards China as against a military driven one.

    October 24, 2011

    Tit for Tat: A Nuclear Retaliation Alternative

    Since the infliction of unacceptable damage may not deter Pakistan from breaking the nuclear taboo, a ‘tit for tat’ strategy in case of lower order nuclear use is worth considering.

    October 03, 2011

    What Does Pakistan Hope to Achieve with Nasr?

    The commentary addresses the pros and cons of Pakistan’s development of Nasr and concludes that it can be neutralised by India through innovative measures.

    August 17, 2011

    Afghanistan: An idea anticipating peace

    In a positive movement, ISAF’s peace enforcement operation over time will have to shift to peacekeeping. Thinking through the idea of UN-SAARC hybrid peacekeeping mission now could help catalyse the peace process eventually.

    June 06, 2011

    Reconciling AFSPA with the Legal Spheres

    The present paper analyses and examines the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in respect of legal aspects. It first discusses it in terms of domestic law, international humanitarian law (IHL) and human rights law. Given India’s obligations under international human rights instruments going beyond domestic law is necessary in any such discussion. Ensuring complementarity between the Act in its application in armed conflicts and IHL, would contribute towards making the Act more ‘humane’. The second part discusses the Act from security perspectives.

    Pakistan’s ‘First Use’ in Perspective

    The article fleshes out Pakistani first use options for an informed discussion on the implied nuclear threat that Pakistan sometimes resorts to.

    May 12, 2011

    Towards a Proactive Military Strategy: 'Cold Start and Stop'

    The article reviews the Cold Start doctrine in light of the limited war doctrine. It argues that the launch of strike corps entails a risk prone war expansion. War termination should therefore be short of the launch of strike corps offensives. It suggests a 'Cold Start and Stop' strategy with limited offensives by integrated battle groups being used to coerce Pakistan. Pakistani amenability to Indian war aims would be dependent on India offering incentives diplomatically alongside. India's limited war doctrine, currently not articulated, must be informed by such a war waging strategy.

    May 2011

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