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Modernisation of Indian Army
The war fighting keep changing due to new ideas; experiences and of course technology. As per majority exponents next war would be more of minds than physical head on combat.

Non state actors having access to dangerous weapon systems and access to high technology are here to stay for sometimes are adding new dimensions and forcing existing defence forces world over to review both tactics and strategy.

Conventional armies have been blamed, perhaps rightly so, for preparing for the last war. This is due to comfort level of experience; uncertainty about future and of course limited exposure in the field of science and technology as most of it is classified.

New threats on the horizon are non-state actors using nuclear dirty bomb; biological or chemical weapons. It suits their strategy perfectly, human delivery in terms of suicide bombers available in plenty; ease of availability and usage; strikes fear amongst masses and low cost.

Cyber-attack is another extremely but disastrous threat looming large. It has the potential of ruining economies plus interfering with almost all systems using cyber space. Various preventive measures have limited capability and can be breached without too much difficulty.

Space is the next potent and dangerous threat. It has the potential to devastate economy and neutralise most of the command, control, communication, intelligence; surveillance systems and redirect guided weapon systems.

Mind control/perception management/soft power/smart power- calls it whatever one wishes to name it. By controlling huge masses of populace through propaganda; NGOs; doctored reports; aids cum grants- it's not too difficult to have frustrated population looking for an option for betterment. Once this mass reaches critical stage of opinion forming, it can tilt decision making which may not be best suited due to pressures through seemingly patriotic and vigilant citizens. Implosion/balkanisation would be the outcome of this warfare- Iran and USSR are ripe examples.

India is comparatively more vulnerable due to divisive polity; NGOs; religious conversions; poverty; dynastic and corrupt polity; corrupt, non performing bureaucracy; biased media; delayed justice delivery system and lack of basic amenities and lack of avenues for growth com empowerment. This is manifesting as insurgency in Central India; dissatisfaction in North Eastern India and repeated flare ups due to scarce resources at times engineered.

Threat Spectrum

All these threats capable of hammering the integrity of the nation are beyond conventional and physical boundaries. In fact majority of threat manifestations will be non-border based as other more potent means exist. Hereafter threat management will need to cater for:

ANY WHERE

ANY TIME

ANY SHAPE

WAY AHEAD

Thought- Thought process needs to enlarge from borders to within and without. Threat could manifest anywhere, any time and in varying shapes. Good old ideas of operational seasons; places; weather etc. are comparatively less important.

Mind warfare perception management will be crucial for voluntary support of populace for gaining real time physical intelligence.

Mental Mobility capability to take on varying type of threats without time consuming detailed orientation training needs very high level of training at all times. Commanders will need to be professionally on the go. Leaders need more exposure through courses and research.

Intelligence as always will be the deciding factor to ensure QUALITY of victory. Wins like Kargil where the nation suffered very heavy casualties are not acceptable. It was a command and intelligence failure of grave magnitude.

Strategic Mobility capability to quickly locate troops at the point of decision would be crucial for quick crisis diffusion. Air mobility is essential. Once achieved number of troops could be significantly reduced.

Harmony of Resources

Feeling of exclusivity and treating others as incompetent needs to be shed. Tremendous resources and capability exist with Civil Police and Para Military forces in terms of manpower; equipment, experience and local knowledge. Once integrated with overall plans, could help army to focus on priority threats.

Lean and Mean

Excessive obsession with more manpower implies more power is a fallacy in the modern world warfare. Less in numbers but smart manpower is needed. Go for technology- man mix to deliver optimum results.

Youth vs Experience

There is always a dilemma of having a young army leading to early retirement and host of well-known problems becoming acute in job starved nation. Useful option lies in moving superseded officers and these men into skills needed for new type of warfare as well as manning the supporting services for the defence forces like audit; land management; canteens; MES and of course in Cyber, perception, intelligence, civil affairs, birder area populace, environmental issues and undertaking research on issues of import as deemed appropriate by service HQ etc.

Ministry of Defence

Urgent need for reorganisation due to total mistrust between uniform and civilians. It's more for inability to understand each other's functioning methodology and excessive emphasis on paper work rather than speed of decision making. Once done, many problems will fall in line.

Veterans

Vital interface between the serving and society. Crucial for a genuine feedback on all issues crucial for army. This could help in providing trained manpower if proper mechanism put in place.

Implementation

It's near impossible for status quo to organisations to change for variety of reasons. Some of these include power shift; loss of perks; enhanced accountability and mistrust etc. Only way to force a change is laid out by people with no personal agenda and backed by those wielding authority.

Commission of eminent citizens like Ratan Tata chair a commission where in all stake holders give presentation. These include services; DRDO; PSUs, veterans and strategic thinkers.

Commission comes up with a way ahead which is got collective wisdom of all; not troubled with past baggage; no personal agenda thereby ensuring best as required for the nation.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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