Vice Admiral (Retd.) Koithara: Nuclear Management System Needs to Be Good To Forestall Escalation

November 09, 2012

New Delhi: The Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) along with the Indian Pugwash Society organised a discussion on Vice Admiral (Retd.) Verghese Koithara’s book ‘Managing India’s Nuclear Forces (Brookings/Routledge, 2012) on November 8, 2012.

It was noted that external and internal factors impinging on India’s nuclear responsibilities have altered substantially. These include Pakistan’s increasing reliance on its nuclear arsenal to offset its conventional inferiority and India’s ‘deterrence horizon’ increasingly encompassing China.

The author noted that a higher level of operationalisation and much greater involvement of the military in nuclear matters are essential both for robust deterrence and for safe and secure operations under alerted conditions. He added that ‘adequate operationalisation’ will also lead to a smaller arsenal. The need for optimal defence management system for the country was highlighted.

Vice Admiral Koithara, PVSM, AVSM, VSM (Retd.) is a PhD in political science with principal areas of research interest encompassing energy issues, nuclear issues, and peace processes. His books include Society, State and Security: The Indian Experience (1999) and Crafting Peace in Kashmir: Through a Realist Lens (2004).