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Showing posts from August 24, 2008

US: Cyberwar turf battle continues

The US Air Force undergoes a re-evaluation, as other agencies vie for the cyberwarfare lead in a government turf war. By Peter A Buxbaum in Washington, DC for ISN Security Watch (28/08/08) It seemed rather odd that just as reports were arriving in Washington about the cyberwarfare dimensions of the Russo-Georgian conflict, the US Air Force shut down its Cyber Command operations - at least temporarily. That does not mean that the US military is giving up on developing cyberwar capabilities, of course. But the US Air Force Cyber Command - although the Air Force has never quite admitted it - was positioning itself to become the key strategic cyberdefense agency, not only within the US Department of Defense, but government-wide. Officially, Cyber Command, which was set up provisionally last year and was to begin operations on 1 October, is to be the subject of review by the Air Force's new leadership, Acting Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley and Air Force Chief of Staff G

Russia-NATO: Return of the great game

16:26 29/ 08/ 2008 MOSCOW. (RIA Novosti military correspondent Ilya Kramnik) - After the breakup of the Soviet Union, many intellectuals in Russia and the West announced "the end of history." It seemed that the United States' complete domination of the world was not disputed by anyone. The subsequent decade, during which Russia lost its foreign policy positions, and its former satellites and even provinces became U.S. and NATO allies, seemed to have buttressed this idea. The first signal that the situation could change came on September 11, 2001, when it suddenly transpired that U.S. domination did not guarantee Washington absolute security. Moreover, for the first time since the Soviet Union's collapse, the United States had to bargain in order to guarantee the loyalty of its allies. With the start of the Iraqi conflict, U.S. domination was called into question even more openly, despite obvious successes in the post-Soviet space such as the admission of the Balt

The `Al-Yamamah Factor' In Musharraf's Ouster

This article appears in the August 29, 2008 issue of Executive Intelligence Review. by Jeffrey Steinberg In the days leading up to the forced resignation of Pakistan's President, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, on Aug. 18, a combined British and Saudi delegation was on the scene, to ensure that the embattled head of state would quit. Mark Lyall Grant, director-general of the Political Directorate of the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, was in Islamabad, along with a delegation of Saudi officials, all demanding Musharraf's departure. In stark contrast to these Anglo-Saudi manuevers, Lyndon LaRouche issued a dramatic warning, on Aug. 15, about the consequences for Pakistan and the entire region, if Musharraf caved in to the pressure and left office. "It is precisely because of the 'Al Yamamah' complication that I urge a halt in the drive to remove President Musharraf from power. The Bandar crowd in Saudi Arabia should not be allowed to control the destiny of Pak

Narendra Modi met PM over national and Gujarat related security issues

Ahmedabad, DeshGujarat, 30th of August, 2008 Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Friday (August 29) met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and made a strong demand for giving assent to a bill to combat terror and organised crime(GUJCOC) in the state . National Security Adviser M K Narayanan was also present in this meeting. Meeting went on for 45 minutes in Prime Minister office. READ GujCOC Bill : Union Government haven't sorted out "policy issues" yet ? Modi explained to the Prime Minister that the law similar to the Gujarat Control of Organised Crime Act was already operational in Maharashtra, then why not in Gujarat? Modi harped on the need for “strong laws” to prevent youngsters from falling prey to terrorists who were looking to recruit them for their anti-national activities. Modi said there was a need for border fencing and special training and providing modern equipment to the forces engaged in border security. Modi said he was not interested in playing pol

LTTE's Air Raid on Trincomalee and the Offensive Operations

Souce: South Asia Analysis Group Col R Hariharan The night raid by two light aircraft of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) air wing on the Trincomalee naval base on August 26, 2008 may be termed as moderately successful. The two aircraft were similar to the ZLIN piston-engined ones that had raided Katunayake air base on March 27, 2007 and in the subsequent attacks on Palali air base on April 24, 2007 and the Anuradhapura air field on October 22, 2007. As in all the four air raids earlier they evaded both the ground fire and the chase by Sri Lanka air force fighters to return safely to their home base. There had been discrepancies in the reports on the raid both in the number of casualties and on how the LTTE raid was conducted out. Broadly the raid went somewhat like this. Around 9 PM the LTTE aircraft flew in undetected and managed to sneak into the air space of the high security zone of the naval complex housing the Eastern Naval Headquarters and the Trincomalee dockyard


B.RAMAN The "New York Times" reported as follows on August 28,2008: "Top US and Pakistani army commanders had a highly unusual secret meeting on board an American aircraft carrier in the Indian Ocean to discuss how to combat the escalating violence along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. The leading actors in the day long conference were Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Pakistan Army Chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani.The meeting had been convened on Tuesday (August 26) by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. While officials of the two allies offered few details on Wednesday about what was decided or even discussed at the meeting - including any new strategies, tactics, weapons or troop deployment- the star-studded list of participants and an extreme secrecy surrounding the talks underscored how gravely the two nations regarded the growing militant threat.". 2.The top secrecy surrounding the talks between Admiral

The new map of Georgia

Moscow redraws the map of Georgia, recognising Abkhazia and South Ossetia, as the dust settles and it becomes clearer where power lies on Europe's borderlands, Ben Judah writes for ISN Security Watch. By Ben Judah in Tbilisi for ISN Security Watch (27/08/08) Hours before the Russians pulled their forces out of the strategic Georgian town of Gori, self-declared commandant General Vlachyslav Borisov stopped his vehicle and gruffly threw open the door to speak to journalists. Sweating and smelling faintly of cognac, he barked: "I'm out of here. I'm withdrawing my combat forces form the area. But peacekeepers are staying." Then he slammed the door. Russian officials accidentally dropped another hint to their intentions. ISN Security Watch managed to see a roughly drawn ink diagram left behind after a meeting of Russian and Georgian officials on 21 August. This is the new map of Georgia. The map showed two circles emanating from the center of both the Ossetian and

IRAN : Middle East space race heats up

The test launch of a faux Iranian satellite earlier this month has again drawn attention to nascent efforts to counter Israel's dominion as a regional celestial power, Dominic Moran writes for ISN Security Watch. By Dominic Moran in Tel Aviv for ISN Security Watch (29/08/08) Iran launched the dummy satellite into space on 17 August taking an important step in its quest for an autonomous satellite program. In an earlier test on 4 February, the indigenously fabricated Safir launch vehicle did not reach orbital velocity in what was apparently the second apparent launcher systems test ahead of this month's launch. Analysts' responses to this month's launch have been mixed with some viewing it as an important indicator of progress. Others sought to present the test as a further indicator of the perceived dangers posed by Iranian ballistic missile and nuclear programs, while some have cast doubts on Iranian claims that the launch was successful. Stockholm International Pe

Global trends: A perfect storm

Market opportunism seems to be running on empty when it comes to global trends, which are complex, borderless and changing everything. Are we prepared? Vivian Fritschi writes for ISN Security Watch. Commentary by Vivian Fritschi for ISN Security Watch (29/08/08) We find ourselves in the midst of fundamental changes brought on by trends that are, and will continue to, radically shape the world in which we live. These trends are better described as "meta" trends because as they give rise to changes that are complex, long-lasting, profound and borderless. Among other things, this long list of trends includes the growing scarcity of important resources (water, fuel and food), climate change and population growth. These trends have many varied, overlapping, complex and highly interdependent primary, secondary and tertiary effects. The media is full of reports of how high oil prices, the water shortage, population growth and natural disasters have exacerbated the existing glo

The Evangelical Project in Orissa

Source: OFFSTUMPED As Kandhamal burns, the BJD-BJP coalition in Orissa is under severe strain. It should be obvious to even the most amateur of political observers that the murder of Swami Lakshmananda was a pre-emptive strike at unravelling this coalition. The unabated violence against Christians is not just unacceptable but is plain stupidity to provoke it for it only widens chasm between the BJD and the BJP ahead of the elections to hand over Orissa on a platter to the Congress. The Naveen Patnaik Administration and the BJP must realise the stakes are too high for the NDA to not contain the violence and to bring the perpetrators of the murdee and subsequent violence to justice. READ MORE

India to raise Special Force "COBRA" to combat Naxal menace

ZEE NEWS New Delhi, Aug 28: Nearly a year after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had described Left-wing extremism as a "virus", the government has given the green signal to raise a 10,000-strong special anti-Naxal force COBRA . The nod to the Combat Battalion for Resolute Action (COBRA), under the command and control of the CRPF, was given last evening by the Cabinet Committee on Security chaired by the Prime Minister. K Durga Prasad, a 1981 batch IPS officer from Andhra Pradesh and an expert in handling the anti-naxal operations, is likely to take charge of the COBRA. The new force will be set up at a cost of Rs 1,389.47 crore out of which Rs 898.12 crore will be spent on land and infrastructure while Rs 491.35 crore will be used for manpower training over a period of three years. The CRPF, in the meantime, will provide its personnel till the recruitment and the training process of the fresh 10 battalions is completed. The Prime Minister, during his address to the top

RUSSIA : Tongue-in-Cheek Support

August 28, 2008 By Dmitry Babich Russia Profile Leaders of the “Shanghai Six” Give Russia Cautious Approval, but Stop Short of Denouncing Georgia As Russia faces mounting international criticism over its decision to recognize the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Tajikistan’s capital Dushanbe bore crucial importance. The Kremlin’s problem is that no country in Western Europe or in the Americas supported President Dmitry Medvedev’s decision to recognize the two separatist regions. In this situation, support from the SCO would be very useful, psychologically as well as strategically. The SCO includes Russia, China, and four former Soviet republics in Central Asia – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. India, Pakistan, Mongolia and Iran are represented at SCO meetings as “observers,” and Afghanistan’s President Khamid Karzai visited the summit in Dushanbe as a “special guest.” So, did Russia get t

QUOTE OF THE DAY: Dr.Wahid Baloch

Dr. Wahid Baloch "Let it be crystal clear that Balochistan was never a part of Pakistan. Trying to Pakistanize Balochistan at the gun point and through the slogan of Allahu Akbar has not worked for the last six decades and will not work in the future. Simply because the state of Pakistan in itself is not a very legitimate State by herslf. Just because the majority of Baloch are born Muslim, does not give the jihadi armies of Pakistan and Iran a license to continue to occupy our lands, conduct genocide of our people, loot and plunder our resources, and test their nuclear weapons in Balochistan. The world community must not close their eyes over the crimes against Baloch people."---  Dr. Wahid Baloch

India’s role in Afghanistan

The Tribune , Chandighar Regional stability can’t be ignored by Harsh V. Pant Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has just returned from Japan where he attended the G-8 summit as a special invitee, and many in the country are arguing that India deserves a permanent place in G-8 and other international institutions as India is already a major global player. Most of the challenges that the international community faces today cannot be resolved without India’s active participation. There is some merit in this argument and many across the world are beginning to realise the importance of India in the global inter-state hierarchy. Yet, India itself has not shown that it is ready for this larger global role. After all, if India is a major global power, what is it doing about the security environment in its immediate neighbourhood? Forget China’s rise, global climate change and the nuclear deal. All these dwarf in front of the challenge India faces in Afghanistan, which is on the brink of colla

How Low Can It Go?

Comment by Georgy Bovt Special to Russia Profile Is a Military Confrontation Between Russia and NATO Impossible? On more than one occasion in history, various crises demonstrated the ability to unfold according to their own, unnamed logic, and not according to the plans of the masterminds behind them. Such may also be the case with Russia’s present confrontation with the West over the breakaway republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia – just when it looks like the conflict has been exhausted, it turns out that the passed grievances have been the mere tip of the iceberg. To optimists, it might seem that the worst has already happened in Russia’s argument with the West over Georgia; that all the formidable words and all the ritual threats have already been uttered, and now both sides will in some form or other return to the pragmatic policy of “business and nothing personal.” This could be true for many reasons: because we sell too much oil and gas to them, and because Russia still pr