Back To Basics – The Only Winning Factor In Counter Insurgency

A primer for those who have never seen an insurgency area nor realized its inherent dangers.

​This has to commence with deep regrets at the loss of precious lives of our soldiers in the Chandel ambush in Manipur on 6 Dogra on 04 Jun. Loss of brave soldiers is always heart wrenching but the Army no doubt will do deep introspection into reasons for such a negative event on a scale not associated with the Olive Green. 6 Dogra will bounce back, I have no doubt. Continue reading


Is Prime Minister Narendra Modi A Truly Strategic Leader?

In spite of it being too early to judge the Modi Government, his achievements in one year are in itself positive signals for the remainder of his tenure.

Usually it is military organizations and sometimes corporate business houses who love to delve into analyzing problems by classifying them as strategic, operational and tactical. In some advanced centers of military learning it is not unusual to see analyses of past personalities to assess whether their outlook, attitude, style, decisiveness and overall personality had the stamp of ‘strategic leader’ written all over it. Continue reading

Why General Durrani’s Comments Must Anger You

Some conclusions we can draw from Al Jazeera’s Panel Discussion with Lt Gen Asad Durrani (Retd), Former DG Pakistan ISI

When does one start a commentary with a Youtube link/url as a quote? One of the possible answers could be – when you are reasonably disgusted with an uploaded video and it draws your ire. You will have to view this 47 minute recording of a panel discussion involving Lt Gen Asad Durrani (Retd), Pakistan’s former DG ISI, in the crucial period of the early 90’s, to agree with me. It was recorded by Al Jazeera at Oxford University and is titled ‘Head to Head – Pakistan: Victim or Exporter of Terrorism’.  It is dated early Apr 2015 so it was obviously conducted in the last few weeks. You need not spend time viewing the video if you believe me; just read my commentary. Continue reading

Nepal Earthquake: The Sensitivities Of Aiding Neighbours

The Indian media’s insensitivity towards the tragedy and its management might have displeased the Nepalese, resulting in the decision to free the territory from foreign forces.

Operation Maitri is progressing well and the rescue and relief efforts by India’s disaster management agencies has been much appreciated over the last ten days. The sheer magnitude of the disaster in Kathmandu and the other areas of Nepal required an international effort and not just a regional one. As a result many nations joined in, bringing relevant modern technology to the disaster zone. Continue reading


It is pleasing to see the response of the Central Government and its multiple agencies to the disaster in Nepal. There can be no better way to convey India’s concern and sensitivity towards its neighbors than these very actions which have drawn national approval and applause. No doubt, the recent experiences gained in the Uttarkhand and Kashmir floods, Orissa cyclone and the mass evacuation from Yemen’s war zone have added richly to our institutional expertise in handling unpredictable situations. However, it is the leadership at the Centre which has obviously made a major difference; officials are learning to function and take decisions in situations of limited but progressively building information. Continue reading


Most observers in India and many abroad were a little peeved at President Ashraf Ghani’s gesture of visiting Pakistan and then China before any other countries, immediately on assumption of the Presidency of Afghanistan. Former President Ahmad Karzai, on an early visit to India immediately after relinquishing his long held appointment made efforts at assuaging feelings in New Delhi by declaring that sequencing of visits of the new President to various capitals in no way reflected the priorities that Afghanistan maintained in its perception of importance of those countries. What became a major point of discussion was the visit of Ashraf Ghani to the Pakistan Army’s General Headquarters (GHQ) to meet General Raheel Sharif, surely a departure from any known protocol. However, it did indicate the manner in which Ghani perceived the conflict in his country. After a full round robin of visits to various countries including China, UK, Iran and Saudi Arabia, Ghani has stepped into India’s capital full seven months after he assumed office. Should we remain peeved or elated or simply be pragmatic and realistic? Continue reading

On the Indian Army

Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Syed Ata Hasnain, Ex-GOC of 15 Corps, Jammu and Kashmir, talks to Newsclick India and The Citizen about the Indian Army. He discusses the issues of corruption, of new recruitment in the Indian Army. He says at present there is a shortage of personnel of approximately about 22 % in the Army.