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THE NEW ARMS RACE: DRONES, AND CRACKS IN THE BRICS

September 17, 2013 By Joseph P. Farrell

...and while we're still talking about the BRICSA nations, you may not have realized it, listening to SeeNoNews, SeeBS, or Faux News, that there is a real bona fide arms race afoot, just as serious as the Missile Race of the early 1960s, only this time, it's not just a bi-polar race. Other nations are quietly elaborating the technologies developed by the USA, in this case, the drone. Let's talk about India for a moment:

India Eyes Drone-Launched Smart Bombs

As the article indicates, India is one of those BRICSA nations standing between East and West, and is benefitting from technology transfers from Israel and the USA in the area of precision-guided ordnance and munitions. The article reassures us that India's intentions for developing drone-delivered smart bombs and cluster munitions are largely internal, i.e., the development of a technology to help India conduct similar anti-terrorist operations as the USA conducts in Pakistan and elsewhere in the Middle East, using drones to take out targets:

"Joshi had a similar assessment saying that the drones could be 'used for fighting terrorism inside the country in remote areas of Jammu and Kashmir as well as anti-Naxal operations.'

"He didn’t believe that the drones would be used to target anti-India militants inside Pakistan proper in the same way that the U.S. has used its drone fleet to carry out targeted strikes against al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters operating in Pakistan’s northwestern regions.

“'I think it will be foolish to use them against militants on foreign soil,' Joshi said when asked by The Diplomat if the drones would be used inside Pakistan."

We can all breathe easier, for Indian drones will not be raining down on us any time soon. They're purely for anti-terrorist operations of a local tactical nature.

Right?

Wrong.

Consider this very suggestive statement:

"Karnad, who helped draft India’s nuclear doctrine in the late 1990s, said that there is a 'whole bunch of tactical and strategic military uses,'for drones armed with smart bombs, including 'on the conventional military battlefield versus Pakistan and China, for deployment against terrorist training camps and staging areas/supply depots in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, and to fight the Naxal insurgents active inside the country.'"(Emphasis added)

In other words, reading between the lines, drones could easily become, and India is suggesting it intends to make them become, their strategic weapon of choice, a kind of cruise missile, guided remotely by human controllers in a far-off control central, a flexible delivery platform able then to deliver a variety of munitions - in this article we're being offered smart bombs and cluster munitions - but the implication is clear: they could also deliver Fuel-Air Explosives, or nuclear or thermonuclear explosives. India's vision for the drone is not merely as a tool in the anti-terrorist arsenal, it is a strategic vision, one quite literally aimed at China, with which it fought short, but very sharp, border engagements during the Mao era.

India has not forgotten that, and neither has China.

So behind these weapons developments, one must also consider the implications...

I've been calling the BRICSA alliance, very deliberately, an entente cordial, deliberately evoking the "understanding" of the western democracies and Tsarist Russia prior to World War One. The entente was never a formal closely interwoven alliance of interests that the Central Powers were, and the same holds true here. India and China are the weak links in the BRICSA entente, so while they're shaking hands and forming banks, they are also warily eyeing each other, and developing weapons that they see are deterrents to each other. The future of the BRICSA bloc depends on how these two powerful and crucial members of that entente manage their historical tensions.

See you on the flip side.