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Tuesday, 29 September 2009

From Today's Papers 29 Sep 09

Kashmir Times

Kashmir Times

Indian Express

Kashmir Times

The Pioneer


Asian Age

Asian Age

Asian Age

Asian Age

The Pioneer

Asian Age

Times of India

DNA India

DNA India

Hindustan Times

Indian Express

Indian Express

Defiant Iran tests long-range missiles

Associated Press, Monday September 28, 2009, Tehran

Iranian state television reported on Monday that the country's Revolutionary Guards had launched fresh missiles tests late on Sunday.

The IRIB news network quoted the head of the Revolutionary Guard Air Force, General Hossein Salami, as saying that Shahab-1 and Shahab-2 missiles, with a range between 300 and 700 kilometres (186-435 miles) had been successfully fired.

Salami claimed during the launch multiple warheads were applied to the Iranian mid-range missiles for the first time during the testing.

The test of the mid-range missiles was the second stage of the "Great Prophet 4" military exercises that began on Sunday and long-range missiles were expected to be tested on Monday, the IRIBB report added.

Sunday evening's test follows earlier claims that Iran had tested a multiple missile launcher for the first time during an earlier test on Sunday.

Both tests came days after the US and its allies condemned Tehran over a newly revealed underground nuclear facility that was being constructed in the country.

The Revolutionary Guard controls Iran's missile programme.

Sunday's tests came two days after Western countries disclosed that Iran had been secretly developing a previously undeclared, underground uranium enrichment facility.

The nuclear site in the mountains near the holy city of Qom is believed to be inside a heavily guarded, underground facility belonging to the Revolutionary Guard, according to a document sent by US President Barack Obama's administration to lawmakers.

After strong condemnations from the US and its allies and a demand to open the site to international scrutiny, Iran said on Saturday it would allow UN nuclear inspectors to examine the site.

Nuclear experts said the details that have emerged about the site and the fact that it was being developed secretly were strong indications that Iran's nuclear programme is not only for peaceful purposes, as the country has long maintained.

Pak seeks military equipment for anti-terror campaign

September 28, 2009 23:10 IST

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani [ Images ] on Monday asked friendly countries to provide state-of-the-art military equipment needed for Pakistan's campaign against militants.

During a meeting with a delegation representing the French Senate Committee on foreign affairs, defence and armed forces, Gilani said enhanced support is needed from friendly countries, particularly to build the capacity of Pakistan's law enforcement agencies.

India has expressed concern over Pakistan's efforts to acquire hi-tech weapon systems in the name of the operations against the Taliban [ Images ], saying such equipment could also be deployed against it.

Gilani said Pakistan has "exhausted most of its vital laser-guided ammunition in the military operation against militants and terrorists" in Malakand division and the tribal belt.

This ammunition needs to be urgently replaced along with the "supply of night vision devices, helicopters and drone technology" for taking the ongoing operations to their successful conclusion, he said.

LeT fights Taliban in NWFP for Pakistan

Sajna Menon

Mon, Sep 28, 2009 11:13:59 IST

ACCORDING TO reports, Lashkar-e-Taiba is helping the Pakistan army fight against the Taliban by setting up defence groups in villages.

Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Hafiz Sayeed, has ordered his commanders to move to the North Western Frontier Province (NWFP). The local tribesmen seem to be wary of the Pakistani Army’s presence in the area, which has helped build up support for the Taliban. Hence, the elders in the area have invited the LeT commanders to take over the fight and campaign from the army.

Small armies or groups are being formed in villages as a defence mechanism against the Taliban to stop the organisation from gaining more power over the NWFP. Interestingly, these groups, comprising of villagers are also called Lashkars. They are trained in arms but refrain from suicide bombings that the LeT is known for.

These lashkars are being organised in areas like Dir and Buner in the NWFP. Khall has the largest group of Lashkars, amounting to 10,000 local people. The main reason that the LeT is aiding the army to fight against the Taliban could be the ideological differences between the two organisations. It is also a chance for LeT to set up ground level bodies and gain some control in the province.

However, the intervention of LeT may not be a very good sign for India. LeT is known as a terrorist organisation and has been banned in many states like India, Russia, UK, US and Australia. Pakistan has also officially denounced LeT. The body has also come under the radar for many terrorists activities in India. Lashkar men have been accused of heightening tensions between India and Pakistan.

The main objective behind LeT's formation was Kashmir Jihad. It has done everything possible to make things difficult for India, from guerrilla warfare to suicide bombings. India has alleged that Lashkar men have infiltrated the border many a times, to train Kashmiri youth to fight for Jihad.

Hence the amount of control that the organisation would gain in NWFP province is unsettling for India. With the support given to local tribesmen, it is likely that the locals in the area might slowly fall to Jihadist ideology and become new warriors in the fight against India.

The organisation is known for recruiting and training men and women to fight with modern arms and tactics. Once the Taliban is flushed out, their attention will once again turn to India. NWFP has witnessed anarchy for ages. Its economy, education and employment rates are abysmal. Hence it is easy for the LeT men to indoctrinate the youth from here into their outfit. The growing popularity of the organisation among the local men is dangerous for India.

In spite of banning the organisation in international forums, the fact that Pakistani military is taking the support of LeT chiefs in another matter of concern. Pakistan needs to learn lessons from the past. The Mujahideen and the Taliban were once formed and trained by Pakistan to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. Now the Taliban are set to take over in many of its regions. If today, the Pakistan army helps the LeT men to breed in their soil, it wouldn’t be long before another conflict erupts between the state and LeT.

* UK seeks to boost defence ties with India

H S Rao

London, Sep 28 (PTI) India and the UK are set to boost defence ties with British Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth planning to undertake a key visit to New Delhi soon.

Britain has said there is tremendous scope for strengthening defence cooperation between India and the UK.

"India is growing in importance economically and politically. There is a partnership growing between Britain and India and there is a very, very significant opportunity out there to forge defence cooperation," Ainsworth said.

Speaking at the 'Labour Friends of India' reception, which was also attended by the British Foreign Secretary David Miliband, Ainsworth said he planned to visit India soon.

Indian High Commissioner Nalin Surie underlined the growing "strategic partnership" between the two countries.

* Indian Air Force denies "espionage" incident


New Delhi, Sep 28 (PTI) The Indian Air Force Monday said none of its senior officers was made to part with sensitive information by a foreign embassy official posing as a Defence Ministry joint secretary.

"The IAF strongly denies the media report written on the basis of hearsay. The report is full of untruth. At that senior level, no sensitive information is discussed over phone," IAF spokesperson Wing Commander T K Singha said here.

However, he said, the report of a circular on information security from the Defence Ministry's chief security officer routinely alerted officials, both in the Ministry and the Services headquarters, and warned them about the risks of discussing security matters over phone.

Indian Army To Buy Specialized Weaponry

India has initiated a fast-track programme for the procurement of of $300 million worth of weaponry and equipment for the elite special forces. Under the program, around 10,000 elite troops will be provided weaponry and equipment in the next 15 months which will be bought from the global market.

Indian Defence Ministry officials said that India’s Defence Acquisition Agency (DAC), the highest weapons acquisition agency has recently cleared the $300 million fast-track modernization program for the infantry. The global bids for this specialized weaponry will be floated in a couple of months.

Indian Army sources said that the 10,000 elite troops will be trained with the advanced weapons and equipment with the help of Israel. The intensive training will be held at an Infantry Training School, in the state of Madhya Pradesh.

The weapons and equipment to be procured under the program will include Helmut Mounted Display systems, anti tank rifles, anti mine boots, software embedded communication systems, Global Positioning System (GPS), thermal imaging sights, precision guided ammunition, protective clothing and other equipment. The Helmut subsystem would be light and will also house the microphone unit for the radio and Head Up Display and a Nuclear Biological and Chemical (NBC) gas mask. The soldier’s personal computer would be attachable. The radio sub system would enable soldiers to transmit and receive complex voice and data signals.

The Indian Army had already envisaged a multi-billion dollar modernization programme for the infantry soldier called the F-INSAS (Futuristic Infantry Soldier as a System) in 2006. The objective of the programme is to enhance the capabilities of infantry soldier in terms of lethality, mobility, survivability, sustainability, situational awareness and battle command and make him a multi-mission war fighter.

Under the F-INSAS program the Indian Army plans to buy new Anti-tank Guided Missiles (ATGM) launchers, bullet proof vehicles, anti-material rifles, new generation carbines battle surveillance radars, Thermal Imaging Sights for ATGM launchers, ground sensors, secured communication systems, precision guided ammunition, laser rangefinder to provide the soldier with range and direction information and light clothing and bullet proof jackets. The Indian Army would commence trials for the F-INSAS prototype from 2011 and aims to equip its entire infantry troops comprising 500,000 by 2020.

The F-INSAS programme was jointly conceived by the Indian Army and the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). However, the Indian Army has virtually rejected the involvement of DRDO in the F-INSAS project estimated to be over $3 billion. The Army has termed the 25-kilogram weight of the entire personal system for the soldier as too heavy. This includes his uniform, the boots, handheld GPS system, night vision equipment, helmet, personal weapon, etc.

The prototypes and concepts were conceived by the DRDO and were deemed unfit by the Indian Army. Most of the weaponry will now be sourced internationally.

While the procurement for the F-INSAS programme is yet to begin, the Indian Army is relieved that some of the hi- tech weaponry is coming their way through the latest fast-track acquisitions.

China To Attack India 'Only If Provoked'

2009-07-20 21:01:50

Last Updated: 2009-07-20 22:19:05

China to attack India `only if provoked`

By Sify News Desk

``There is one scenario where there is possibility for (a Sino-Indian) war: an aggressive Indian policy toward China, a `New Forward Policy` may aggravate border disputes and push China to use force - despite China`s appeal, as far as possible, for peaceful solutions.``

So says a scathing Chinese editorial published in response to Indian defence analyst Bharat Verma`s assertion that China may attack India before 2012.

The article, `Illusion of ``China`s Attack on India Before 2012` written By Chen Xiaochen, was published on July 17 in, which bills itself as `the first online English publication dedicated to reviewing China`s finance/ economy/business.``

Noting that ``the 2000 km border between China and India has been a notable absence from press headlines in the years since then-Indian PM Vajpayee`s 2003 visit to Beijing,`` Chen adds that ``Tensions, however, have risen again as India announced last month a plan to deploy two additional army divisions and two air force squadrons of Su-30 Fighter Unit, some 60,000 soldiers in total, in a disputed border area in the southern part of Tibet, which India claims as its state of Arunachal Pradesh.``

``Adding fuel to the flames,`` he continues, ``is an article by Bharat Verma, editor of Indian Defense Review, predicting that China will attack India before 2012, leaving only three years to Indian government for preparation.``

Describing Verma`s arguments as `vague` and `lacking documentation,` he notes that even if China were to consider such an act, ``The Western powers would not take kindly to a Chinese conflict with India, leaving China rightfully reluctant to use force in any case other than extreme provocation.``

``If China were to be involved in a war within the next three years, as unlikely as that seems, the adversary would hardly be India. The best option, the sole option, open for the Chinese government is to negotiate around the disputed territory,`` he argues.

``Consider the 1959-1962 conflict, the only recorded war between China and India in the long history of their civilizations. After some slight friction with China in 1959, the Indian army implemented aggressive action known as its Forward Policy. The Chinese Army made a limited but successful counterattack in 1962,`` says Chen, who is described as `a journalist of editorial and comments in China Business News.``

``Now,`` he says, ``it seems `back to the future`. Mr. Verma asserts another war will happen before 2012, a half century after the last, regrettable one. India has started to deploy more troops in the border area, similar to its Forward Policy 50 years ago. Is Mr. Verma`s China-bashing merely a justification for more troops deployed along the border? Will India`s `New Forward Policy`, as the old one did 50 years ago, trigger a `2012 war?` ``

``The answers lie mainly on the Indian side,`` says Chen. ``Given China`s relatively small military garrison in Tibet, Indian`s 60,000 additional soldiers may largely break the balance. If India is as `pacific` as Mr. Verma says, and is sincere in its border negotiation, China-India friendship will remain. After all, China shares a long and mostly friendly cultural exchange with India as well as other neighbours.

``Now China is seeking deeper cooperation, wider coordination, and better consensus with India, especially in the global recession, and peace is a precondition for doing so. China wants to say, `We are on the same side,` as the Indian Ambassador did in a recent interview in China. Thus, `China will attack India before 2012` is a provocative and inflammatory illusion,`` Chen concludes.


  1. Hey. Nice blog! Good to see that someone still reads newspaper. I haven't read everything but the issue with Iran makes me worried. Instead of increasing of cooperation with west, Iran tests long-range missiles. This should be changed as soon as possible otherwise I think sanctions will be imposed and isolation will deepen.


  2. Hi,
    at first i have to agree with ella, that it is nice to see that someone still reads the newspaper. I do :-)
    second it is good to hear Britain has said there is tremendous scope for strengthening defence cooperation between India and the UK.
    thanks for good blog. jay



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