WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — India’s former national security advisor Shivshankar Menon claims his country’s largest threat to Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal is not from established terrorist cells in the nation, but from rouge members of Pakistan’s own armed forces.
While noting terrorists have easier and cheaper ways of wreaking havoc, Menon said the nuclear weapons are complex devices that are difficult to manage, use and delivery require a very high level of skills.
“To my mind, the real threat (to Pak nukes) is from insiders, from a Pakistani pilot or a brigadier who decides to wage nuclear jihad, with or without orders,” Menon writes in his book titled “Choices: Inside the Making of India’s Foreign Policy.”
“The risk increases as Pakistan builds tactical nuclear weapons for battlefield use, control of which will necessarily be delegated down the command chain,” he said.
He goes on to write that Pakistan are the only nation in the world with a nuclear arsenal completely under the control of its military.
“There are good reasons why no other country chose to go down this path,” he said.
While India has a declared policy of no-first use of nuclear weapons, Menon in his book warns that if Pakistan were to use tactical nuclear weapons against India “even against Indian forces in Pakistan,” it would effectively be opening the door to a massive Indian-first strike, having crossed India’s declared red line.
“Pakistani tactical nuclear weapons use would effectively free India to undertake a comprehensive first strike against Pakistan,” he said.
“There are several responses short of war available to a state like India,” he writes.