You are here

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Email
  • Whatsapp
  • Linkedin
  • Print
  • Nuclear Armed for Uncertain Times

    India can look back with more than a fair measure of satisfaction on the past two decades since its nuclear weapon tests of May 1998. Those tests signalled a strategic shift. This article therefore looks at the international situation and tendencies that prevailed in the run up to these tests. It then presents an assessment of the international reaction as a consequence of that bold and courageous action; as well as of the comprehensive endeavour to address the challenges and maximise the opportunities presented.

    May 2018

    Nuclear India and the Global Nuclear Order

    The 1998 nuclear tests conducted by India heralded yet another nuclear age. The instant response of a section of the international community was highly pessimistic. It foresaw regional instability, collapse of the global nuclear order and serious crisis in the global nuclear non-proliferation regime. As a result, overlooking India’s security imperatives, a number of countries reacted with hostility against the Indian nuclear tests. Even international organisations were mobilised against India.

    May 2018

    Post-Pokhran II: Emerging Global Nuclear Order and India’s Nuclear Challenge

    Post-Pokhran II the global nuclear environment has changed both in terms of developing niche technologies as also the nuclear strategies. Apart from the traditional challenges, there are new threats emerging in the form of cyber, space, hypersonic glide vehicles, nuclear terrorism, etc. The development of multiple nuclear dyads and triads further makes the security environment increasingly complex, as nations now have to deal with multiple nuclear problems and adversaries.

    May 2018

    Guest Editor’s Introduction

    May 11, 2018, marks the twentieth anniversary of the Shakti-series of tests. In 1998, India conducted five nuclear tests on May 11 and 13. The government stated that in the five tests, advanced weapon designs had been tested. On May 11, declared as the National Technology Day, the three tested devices were of 45-kilotons thermonuclear, 15-kilotons fission and 0.2 sub-kiloton yields. On May 13, India continued the testing of nuclear devices. Both the tests were of the sub-kiloton yields—0.5 and 0.3. These tests heralded India as a nuclear weapon state.

    May 2018

    Pokhran 20 Years After: Did the World Change?

    Was the 1998 Pokhran test a historical watershed as many contemporary observers believed? This article looks at its impact on the nuclear non-proliferation regime, regional security, India’s position in global institutions, and the ongoing global power shift: the non-proliferation regime continued along the old dispute lines; regional conflict behaviour did not change at all; India grew into global institutions not because of nuclear tests but because of her remarkable economic development; the re-arrangement of global power follows more basic trends as well.

    May 2018

    Walking Back Delusional Nuclear Policies

    India’s ‘dual use’ nuclear policy has been strung out from the beginning between the peaceful atom and military atom as illustrated in Jawaharlal Nehru’s use of the phrase for the country’s nuclear energy programme—‘Janus-faced’. However, the Indian Government has been too influenced by its own rhetoric of peaceful use to equally emphasise the security aspects that the phrase implied.

    May 2018

    Will North Korea Denuclearise?

    Kim will drive the hardest bargain possible and be willing to make only small concessions like maintaining some type of a freeze on future tests of missiles and nuclear weapons.

    April 09, 2018

    Karthik S.P. asked : What was the difference between the two nuclear tests that India conducted vide Operation Shakti and Operation Smiling Buddha?

    A. Vinod Kumar replies: On May 18, 1974, India conducted its first nuclear explosive test (of a plutonium implosion device) in Pokhran desert in Rajasthan, which the government described as a ‘peaceful nuclear explosion’ or PNE. The use of PNE technology was in vogue during the 1950s and 1960s with the superpowers using nuclear explosive technology for developmental and industrial applications like civil engineering projects, deep sea mining and so on.

    Compact Fusion: Are the Energy Equations About to Change?

    Advanced technologies and supercomputing have accelerated the pace of research and development in the field of nuclear fusion.

    January 10, 2018

    Two standoffs and some nuclear lessons

    standoffs in Doklam and North Korea

    The standoffs in Doklam and North Korea offer insights on how crisis stability remains subject to the complexities of deterrence, especially in theatres with multiple nuclear-armed states, and what this entails for disarmament.

    December 29, 2017