Kashmir, climate change, and nuclear war, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Zia Mian , 7 Dec 16 “……..The climate-water conflict. Along with the risks of war triggered by an escalation along the Line of Control in Kashmir or by attacks on Indian cities by Islamist militants backed by Pakistan, a new source of conflict between Pakistan and India has emerged, also centered on Kashmir. It is a struggle over access to and control over the water in the rivers that start as snow and glacial meltwater in the Himalayas and pass through Kashmir on their way to Pakistan as the Indus River Basin, ending in the Arabian Sea.
The Indus River and its tributaries are central to Pakistan’s water supply, food supply, and electricity production, and India relies on some of the same water. Under the 1960 Indus Waters Treaty, Pakistan has control over the Indus, Jhelum, and Chenab Rivers, and India manages the Sutlej, Beas, and Ravi rivers until they cross into Pakistan and all merge into the Indus River. The treaty was established in part because of conflicts over water between the two countries following independence in 1947, including an Indian decision in 1948 to block some of the water flowing into Pakistan during the first India-Pakistan war over Kashmir.
As water demand in both countries has grown to meet the needs of rapidly growing populations and increased agriculture and industrial use, large hydroelectric dams have been constructed, and renewed disputes are testing the Indus Waters Treaty. A 2011 United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee report assessed that “water may prove to be a source of instability in South Asia [as] new demands for the use of the river flows from irrigation and hydroelectric power are fueling tensions between India and Pakistan. A breakdown in the [Indus Water] treaty’s utility in resolving water conflicts could have serious ramifications for regional stability.” The report concluded grimly that “the United States cannot expect this region to continue to avoid ‘water wars’ in perpetuity.”………
Pakistan’s government, nationalist and militant organizations, and right-wing media frequently now present India’s construction of dams in Kashmir as a pressing national security threat and one that may call for extreme responses. An editorial in one leading urdu-language Pakistani newspaper in 2011 declared “Pakistan should convey to India that a war is possible on the issue of water and this time war will be a nuclear one.” ………http://thebulletin.org/kashmir-climate-change-and-nuclear-war10261
Kashmir, climate change, and nuclear war, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Zia Mian , 7 Dec 16 In April 2016, speaking at the conclusion of the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington DC, which had brought together more than 50 government leaders, President Obama described what he saw as the three major nuclear weapons challenges. Along with difficulties in achieving further nuclear arsenal reductions by the United States and Russia and the problem of North Korea, President Obama listed Pakistan and India and the need, as he put it, for “making sure that as they develop military doctrine that they are not continually moving in the wrong direction.” The White House press secretary later explained that underlying the President’s concern about South Asia was “the risk that a conventional conflict between India and Pakistan could escalate to include the use of nuclear weapons.” It is a well-founded fear and one that has become more urgent as tensions between Pakistan and India have escalated.
As part of its efforts to pressure India into giving up Kashmir, Pakistan has backed Kashmiri insurgents and used Islamist militants to launch attacks across the Line of Control. ……
Frustration in the armies on both sides has led to furious, seemingly indiscriminate firing across the Line of Control. The scale of civilian casualties has led hundreds of people to flee their homes on both sides of the line; local villagers say it seems as “if a full-blown war is going on between India and Pakistan.”
Meanwhile many Kashmiris have turned to supporting groups resisting Indian rule and been met with repression from security forces………
It is not just attacks by Pakistan-backed militants on Indian forces in Kashmir and subsequent Indian reprisals that could escalate and tip the two countries into another major war. A related trigger would be an attack on an Indian city by Islamist militant groups, along the lines of the assault on Mumbai in November 2008 that claimed hundreds of casualties and was linked to intelligence agencies in Pakistan. ………
The climate-water conflict……
From tactical weapons to massive retaliation. India anticipates that Pakistan might use nuclear weapons against Indian conventional forces during a war. The Indian Army conducted a massive military exercise in April 2016 in the Rajasthan Desert bordering Pakistan, involving tanks, artillery, armored personnel carriers, and 30,000 soldiers who practiced what they would do if attacked with nuclear weapons on the battlefield. An Indian Army spokesman told the media that “our policy has been always that we will never use nuclear weapons first. But if we are attacked, we need to gather ourselves and fight through it. The simulation is about doing exactly that.” This was not the first such exercise.
Indian nuclear doctrine also calls for massive retaliation directed at Pakistani cities, and Pakistan has threatened to respond in kind. In 2003, India’s cabinet declared nuclear weapons “will only be used in retaliation against a nuclear attack on Indian territory or on Indian forces anywhere… [N]uclear retaliation to a first strike will be massive and designed to inflict unacceptable damage.” According to Admiral Vijay Shankar, a former head of Indian strategic nuclear forces, such retaliation would involve nuclear attacks on Pakistan’s cities.
General Kidwai from Pakistan describes such Indian threats as “bluster and blunder,” since they “are not taking into account the balance of nuclear weapons of Pakistan, which hopefully not, but has the potential to go back and give the same kind of dose to the other side.” This seems an explicit suggestion of Pakistan planning to target Indian cities with nuclear weapons in retaliation of Indian nuclear attacks on Pakistani cities.
From regional war to great power war. Time is not on our side. The failure to settle the Kashmir dispute despite the passage of 70 years has already triggered three wars. While Pakistan clings grimly to its claims on Kashmir, India seems less inclined to compromise as it grows in economic and military power. Adding to this will be the inevitable pressures from climate change over the coming decades on the Himalayan glaciers, the monsoons, and ground water in the Indus Basin, which will lead to reduced and less reliable access to water in an already water-stressed region, at a time of rapidly growing demand. These drivers have already started to overlap, and conflicts over land, people, blood, and water may become one.
Once initiated, possibly even by the actions of a small militant group, a Pakistan-India conflict may well escalate into a larger war and then bring in allied outside powers, as happened in Europe in World War I.
Pakistan is building ever closer military and economic ties to China; India is becoming a strategic partner of the United States. These alliances with great powers may give policy makers in Pakistan and Indian confidence in escalating a conflict and issuing nuclear threats during a crisis. Because of the increasingly tense and militarized nature of the rivalry between China and the United States, a South Asian conflict that draws them in could escalate into a potentially far more destructive war.
Given these risks, forestalling crises and possible war in South Asia should be a priority. The long history of failures to find a path to peace for Kashmir through United Nations resolutions and bilateral Pakistan-India agreements seems to have sapped the will to try to address the dispute directly. Preventing a South Asian war from becoming nuclear war will require progress on banning the bomb. http://thebulletin.org/kashmir-climate-change-and-nuclear-war10261
Terror-Plagued Pakistan Just Turned On Another Nuclear Reactor, Daily Caller ANDREW FOLLETT, Energy and Science Reporter , 18 Oct 16
A report posted to 38 North on Thursday estimates that North Korea could be in possession of roughly 20 atomic bombs by the end of the year. Its [DPRK] ability to field an ICBM fitted with a nuclear warhead capable of reaching the United States is still a long way off – perhaps 5 to 10 years, but likely doable if the program is unconstrained,” the report reads.
But as the global community reacts to Pyongyang, an analysis from IHS Jane’s reveals that Pakistan may also be increasing its nuclear stockpiles, building a new uranium enrichment complex. “The area of interest is approximately 1.2 hectares and is located within the secure area of the Khan Research Laboratories (KRL), in the southwestern part of the complex,” the analysis states.
“Roughly rectangular in shape and approximately 140 x 80 meters, the new structure is surrounded by scrubland and trees that provide an additional measure of security on the ground,” IHS Jane reports.
The report is based on satellite surveillance of the site, located in the town of Kahuta, roughly 30 kilometers east of Islamabad. “It is sited within an established centrifuge facility, has strong security and shows some of the structural features of a possible new uranium enrichment facility. This makes it a strong candidate for a new centrifuge facility,” said Karl Dewey, an analyst with IHS Jane’s, according to the Indian Express.
If true, this development could cause problems for Pakistan’s membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group.
It is difficult to see how these actions are consistent with the principles of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a group of responsible nuclear exporters which Pakistan is seeking to join,” Ian Stewart, head of Project Alpha at King’s College London, told the Indian Express.
Pakistan conducted its first nuclear test in 1998 and is believed to be in possession of roughly 120 nuclear weapons. The country relies on three commercial nuclear power plants and plans to construct 32 additional plants by 2050.
What happens if India and Pakistan both fire nuclear warheads at each other? http://www.thenewsminute.com/article/what-happens-if-india-and-pakistan-both-fire-nuclear-warheads-each-other-50604
If India and Pakistan detonated 100 nuclear warheads, over 21 million people will die immediately, and half the world’s ozone layer would be destroyed, September 29, 2016 – By Abheet Singh Sethi, 30 Sept 16
If India and Pakistan fought a war detonating 100 nuclear warheads (around half of their combined arsenal), each equivalent to a 15-kiloton Hiroshima bomb, more than 21 million people will be directly killed, about half the world’s protective ozone layer would be destroyed, and a “nuclear winter” would cripple monsoons and agriculture worldwide.
As the Indian Army considers armed options, and a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP urges a nuclear attack, even as the Pakistan Defence Minister threatens to “annihilate” India in return, the following projections, made by researchers from three US universities in 2007, are a reminder of the costs of nuclear war.
According to the study by researchers from Rutgers University, University of Colorado-Boulder and University of California, Los Angeles, about 21 million people – half the death toll of World War II – would perish within the first week from blast effects, burns and acute radiation in India and Pakistan.
This death toll would be 2,221 times the number of civilians and security forces killed by terrorists in India over nine years to 2015, according to an IndiaSpend analysis of South Asia Terrorism Portal data.
Another two billion people worldwide would face risks of severe starvation due to the climatic effects of the nuclear-weapon use in the subcontinent, according to a 2013 assessment by the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, a global federation of physicians. Continue reading
Pakistan threatens to DESTROY India with nuclear bomb as atomic enemies edge to the brink of war https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/1883306/pakistan-threatens-to-destroy-india-with-nuclear-bomb-as-atomic-enemies-edge-to-the-brink-of-war/ Tensions have risen dramatically between the nuclear-armed neighbours BY SARA KAMOUNI 30th September 2016,
Nuclear threat not acceptable, US tells Pakistan, http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/nuclear-threat-not-acceptable-us-tells-pakistan/article9170042.ece VARGHESE K. GEORGE, 1 Oct 16 The United States has conveyed to Pakistan that nuclear threats are not acceptable, a senior State Department official who did not want to be named, said. The message was conveyed to Pakistan after its defence minister said twice in the span of a week that his country could use tactical nuclear weapons against India.
“We made that clear to them. Repeatedly,” the official said when asked whether the U.S has conveyed to Pakistan that no nuclear capable country is expected to threaten anyone with the use of nukes. “We haven’t kept the devices that we have just as showpieces. But if our safety is threatened, we will annihilate them (India),” the defence minister of Pakistan had said.
“It is very concerning, it is a serious thing,” the U.S official said, adding that the U.S has been urging both countries to “pull back and deescalate.” “At the same time we have made it very clear that what happened in the Indian arm base (Uri) is an act of cross border terrorism,” the official added.
The U.S is concerned about the safety of Pakistani nuclear weapons otherwise also, the official said. “The safety of these weapons is always a concern for us. So we are always monitoring it, regardless of what they said on this particular occasion,” he said.
Nuclear War: Pakistan, China, Russia Vs India, America Nuclear Warheads USA Morning News 1 Oct 16 “……… Nuclear Warhead Assessment
So if it comes down to an all-out nuclear war between the US-India on one side and China-Russia-Pakistan on the other, here is an assessment of which side is likely to have an upper hand in the war:
- It has been estimated that China, India, and Pakistan all possess ballistic missile, cruise missile, and sea-based nuclear weapons.
- Even though China, Russia, and the U.S. possess nuclear weaponry, according to the NPT, they have been banned from building and maintaining such weapons in perpetuity.
- China has 260 approximate warheads, Russia has roughly 7300 and Pakistan has 120.
- The USA is lagging slightly behind Russia with 7100 warheads and India currently has 110.
Hence, with Russia currently ahead than all the rest in the nuclear race, both India and Pakistan are looking to Russia to build an alliance with. http://www.morningnewsusa.com/nuclear-war-pakistan-china-russia-vs-india-america-nuclear-warheads-23109179.html
Pakistan selling nuclear materials to North Korea – CIA’s explosive revelation; US informs India, Zee News, September 6, 2016 New Delhi: America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has apprised India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) that Pakistan is supplying nuclear material to North Korea.
According to reports, Pakistan has been sending nuclear materials to North Korea through sea route.
Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) supplied Monel and Enconel (nuclear substances) to Pyongyang in clear violation of United Nations sanctions…….http://zeenews.india.com/news/india/pakistan-selling-nuclear-materials-to-north-korea-cias-explosive-revelation-us-informs-india_1926237.html
Is this because USA wants nuclear disarmament, or because USA wants to sell nuclear materials to the sub continent?
US urges India and Pakistan to sign and ratify nuclear test ban treaty Washington has welcomed Pakistan’s recent proposal to India for a bilateral agreement on nuclear weapons test ban, IBT By Nandini Krishnamoorthy August 24, 2016 The US has asked arch-rivals India and Pakistan to set aside their differences and sign and ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). Welcoming Pakistan’s recent proposal to India for a bilateral agreement on nuclear weapons test ban, Washington has urged the two countries to hold talks.
Mark Toner, the State Department deputy spokesperson, said: “We welcome this high-level dialogue between India and Pakistan, encourage both countries to engage in the dialogue and exercise restraint aimed at improving strategic stability.”……..
On Tuesday (23 August), Pakistan announced a fresh move to seek support for its NSGmembership bid. Syed Tariq Fatemi, special assistant to the prime minister on foreign affairs, embarked on a visit to Belarus and Kazakhstan to win their backing, The Hindu reported.
While India was kept out, Pakistan’s membership was not discussed during the plenary meeting of the NSG in Seoul in June. Although it has China on its side, it failed to get the backing of the US.http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/us-urges-india-pakistan-sign-ratify-nuclear-test-ban-treaty-1577733
It would make sense therefore not to invest in projects that are destined to be overtaken by superior alternatives. The funds going into nuclear power stations would be better spent on making use of wind and solar power for which Pakistan has substantial potential.
No one can predict what the energy scene would look like in 2050, when all of the planned nuclear power stations are to become operational. What is clear is that they won’t remain competitive as new technologies come along to elbow out some of the old ones.
A case for reviewing nuclear power plants http://aaj.tv/2016/08/a-case-for-reviewing-nuclear-power-plants/ August 18, 2016 by Farah Jamil Last month, something interesting and unusual happened in Britain that should give a pause to Islamabad as it walks in a certain direction without thinking what lies in store. Continue reading
Pakistan, India exchange information on nuclear facilities http://dailytimes.com.pk/islamabad/01-Jan-06/pakistan-india-exchange-information-on-nuclear-facilities ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and India on Sunday exchanged lists of their nuclear facilities on Sunday, a requirement every January 1 under an accord in which they promised not to attack each other’s nuclear installations.
“The governments of Pakistan and India today exchanged lists of their respective nuclear installations and facilities in accordance with Article II of the Agreement on Prohibition of Attacks Against Nuclear Installations and Facilities between Pakistan and India of December 31, 1988,” a Foreign Office statement said.
Zaheer A. Janjua, Director of the India Desk in Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs handed over the list to an officer of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad at the Foreign Office at 11:00am PST, the statement said.
India handed over their list to Muhammad Khalid Jamali, First Secretary of the Pakistan High Commission at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi at 11:30am IST, it added. The statement did not give any details of which installations and facilities are mentioned in the lists. The list usually includes civilian nuclear power plants and gives the exact location of each such installation.
Top foreign ministry officials from Pakistan, led by Foreign Secretary Riaz Muhammad Khan will meet Indian officials on January 17 and 18 in New Delhi for talks on Kashmir and other issues. Railway officials are also slated to meet in New Delhi on January 5 and 6 to discuss reopening a rail link between Munabao and Khokhrapar, which was terminated after a 1965 war between the two countries.
Viewpoint: India’s nuclear lobbying and an increasingly isolated Pakistan, BBC News, By Ahmed RashidLahore 14 June 2016
India’s American-backed bid to join the prestigious Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) has once again isolated Pakistan in South Asia.
Pakistan is increasingly finding itself friendless in the region as Iran, Afghanistan and India all find fault with Pakistan’s inability to end terrorism on its soil and in particular to bring the Afghan Taliban to the table for peace talks, as Islamabad promised to do nearly two years ago.
The 48-nation NSG, which sets global rules for international trade in nuclear energy technology, has become the latest diplomatic battleground between India and Pakistan. It is due to hold a crucial meeting this month. The Pakistani military is angry that after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent trip to Washington, the US has been furiously lobbying all member countries to give India a seat at the NSG table.
Pakistan then asked for the same, but its proliferation record is not as good as India’s and it clearly would not succeed. Instead, it has asked China to veto the Indian bid which it is likely to do. However, smaller countries are angry with the US, who they accuse of browbeating them, and complain that neither India nor Pakistan can become members until they sign the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) which is an essential requirement.
President Obama is going against his own policy of nuclear restraint and disarmament by offering to make India – but not Pakistan – a member of the NSG, when the US has also tied up plans to sell India six nuclear power plants……..http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-36518330
Pakistan tells U.S. it qualifies for nuclear suppliers club http://in.reuters.com/article/india-pakistan-usa-nsg-idINKCN0Y829 W ISLAMABAD | BY KAY JOHNSON 17 May 16
Pakistan’s foreign secretary on Tuesday told a U.S. envoy his country has the “credentials” to join a club of nuclear trading nations, signalling Islamabad may apply alongside India and force a showdown in the consensus-based group next month.
Such a move would drag the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) into the long-running tension between India and Pakistan, nuclear-armed neighbours who have fought three wars since being split amid violence at the end British colonial rule in 1947.
Diplomats last year quietly launched a new push to induct India into the NSG – a 48-nation club dedicated to curbing nuclear arms proliferation by controlling the export and re-transfer of materials that could foster nuclear weapons development.
“Pakistan expressed confidence in its credentials to become full member of the export control regimes, particularly Nuclear Suppliers Group,” the Foreign Ministry’s official spokesman said in a tweet.
The comment followed talks on Tuesday in Islamabad between Pakistani Foreign Secretary Aizaz Chaudhry and U.S. Under Secretary of State for Arms Control Rose Gottemoeller.
The U.S. Embassy in Islamabad declined to comment.
Membership of the NSG would increase India’s international clout and provide a vested interest in curbing the world’s most dangerous regional arms race, but the prospects are fraught.
The campaign for India membership is seen as carrying the risk of antagonising Pakistan as well as its ally China, which could veto any India application.
China could also insist as a condition of India’s membership that Pakistan also be allowed to join, a potential hard sell because of Islamabad’s development of new tactical nuclear weapons.
A further complication is that neither India nor Pakistan has signed the nuclear Non-Profileration Treaty, generally seen as a prerequisite to NSG membership.
The Nuclear Suppliers Group is expected to hold its next meeting in June.The NSG was created in response to India’s testing its first nuclear weapon in 1974. (Writing by Kay Johnson; Editing by Alison Williams)
Pakistan veteran recalls shopping trips to nuclear grey markets, http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/pakistan-diplomat-jamsheed-marker-recalls-shopping-trips-to-nuclear-grey-markets/article8456193.ece THE HINDU, KALLOL BHATTACHERJEE , 10 Apr 16 Retired diplomat Jamsheed Marker talks about “meeting characters, genuine and shady, in tiny cafes tucked away in obscure villages deep in the beautiful Swiss and German countryside”.
One of Pakistan’s best-known diplomats has given an unprecedented account of how his country clandestinely built its nuclear arsenal using its diplomatic network in Europe.
In Cover Point: Impressions of Leadership in Pakistan, an autobiographical account of Pakistan’s politicians, retired diplomat Jamsheed Marker, 94, says: “This exercise involved a bit of James Bond stuff, and I remember Ikram and myself meeting characters, genuine and shady, in tiny cafes tucked away in obscure villages deep in the beautiful Swiss and German countryside.”
Mr. Marker served as Pakistan’s Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany between 1980 and 1982, when the meetings took place, which led to Pakistan acquiring sensitive technology from European firms for its nuclear weapons programme.
“The Embassy had a Procurement Department [the nomenclature really fooled nobody] headed by a most able officer of Minister rank named Ikram Khan, who was seconded from our nuclear establishment headed by Dr A.Q. Khan. Ikram was a superb officer, knowledgeable, low-key and efficient, and went about his sensitive job with the combination of initiative and discretion that were its primary requirements,” writes Mr. Marker , revealing how Pakistan sourced technology for its nuclear programme from western markets.
Mr. Marker’s disclosure sheds light on a wide array of willing partners from among firms in Europe which were willing to partner Pakistan’s quest for nuclear weapons, for a price. Mr. Marker, who worked directly under the supervision of General Zia-ul-Haq, played a peripheral role as the “Procurement Department” operated under a cloak of secrecy.
Mr. Marker, served for three decades in various important embassies of Pakistan, but reached the most successful phase of his career with his back-to-back appointments as Pakistani Ambassador to Bonn, Paris and Washington DC during the tenure of Gen Zia (1977-1988). Mr. Marker said that he admired the way Gen Zia (who became civilian President in 1985) diverted the West’s attention while going all out for giving Pakistan its nuclear weapon. “I maintain a mild, amused contempt for the enthusiasm with which western industrial enterprises, in their pecuniary pursuits, conspired with us to evade their own governments’ law prohibiting all nuclear transfers to Pakistan,” he writes in what is the first account from one of Gen. Zia’s key diplomats on the modus operandi adopted to build the nuclear bomb in Pakistan.
Mr. Marker says the U.S. spy services were aware of Pakistan’s determination to go nuclear and were unable to prevent Gen. Zia.