Delhi, 15 November 2002
regularly get feedback from our viewers commenting on the articles
put up by us. We present below comments by two of our regular
visitors on two articles recently published.
first contains very articulate comments on the recently announced
‘super carriers construction programme’ by the USA, which
appeared in the last edition of our International
the second the writer was prompted to react to our article on the
writings of Stephen Cohen.
of “Super Carriers”
the United States government approves the construction of CVNX
series of "super carriers" (aircraft-carriers with 50,000+
tonnage) it will ensure the victory of the more
"conservative" section of defence think tanks of United
States military circle. (Refer "New Generation Aircraft
Carriers for US Navy " International Watch).
some time the concept of RIMA (Revolution In Military Affairs)
forcefully projected by Andrew Marshall is emphasising on the
concept of "Arsenal Ship" those are lightly manned and
heavily armed alternatives to aircraft-carriers. Serving as mobile
missile platforms and capable of semi-submerging themselves for
stealthiness, they are to have their required targeting done from
remote locations, usually by an UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) or
satellites and appropriate co-ordinates passed to them. Long-range
cruise missiles like Tomahawk will then be launched in clusters to
decimate the targets.
it is perhaps the limitation of an effective area air defence
provided by SAMs (Surface-to-Air Missiles) of the arsenal ship,
provided a "breathing space" for the supporters of the
CVNX (Aircraft-Carrier, Nuclear, eXperimental). CVNX series is to
incorporate advanced aircraft launch-and-recovery system such as
EMALS (Electro-Magnetic Aircraft Launch System) being developed by
Kaman Electromagnetics and possibly an internal-combustion catapult
system fuelled by JP-5 jet fuel.
spite of proliferation of precision-guided munitions and missiles
and supported by increasingly accurate GPS (Global Positioning
System) guidance, the United States Navy retains faith on their
super carriers for strike and area air defence missions. They
consider it still relatively invulnerable for its ability to move
and manoeuvre in contrast to fixed military installations. It is
reasonable to assume that until the advent of more advanced ships
based SAMs and UACVs (Unmanned Aerial Combat Vehicles) capable of
conducting autonomous air-interception missions, aircraft-carriers
will remain the primary surface combatants for diverse missions.
These are some of the random thoughts that
came to my mind after going thru Cohen's article.
I would like to contest his theory that the idea of Pakistan was or is
to provide intellectual/religious leadership to the Islamic world
besides a home for Ex-Indian Muslims. I would say the second one is
true but the first one was propagated only after having failed to
reconquer India (mostly North).
Pakistan does not have the historical,
geographic, cultural and intellectual attributes to play a leading
role in Islamic world. Even the great Muslim rulers/emperors of
India did not show such pretensions and were happy with what they
could receive from India and its people. The only religious
contributions to Islam from Indian Muslims were –– Deen-e-IIahi
by Akbar and Sufism by great Muslim saints, both were derived from
Indian history, culture and religious ethos.
Pakistan in its fifty years of existence or
the local people of geographic Pakistan, have never produced any
great Islamic scholar nor do they have any worthwhile school of
Islamic learning where except for the Taliban, anybody else would
like to come. Whereas undivided India produced some great learned
men of letters and religion –– Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, Maulana Azad,
Dr Zakir Hussein –– to name a few.
All worthwhile centres of Islam or Muslims
–– Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Constantinople, Iraq and Iran, in their
heyday wanted to come and conquer India even when it was ruled by
Muslims. In fact they never gave any significance to Indian Muslims
as a people considering them as mostly converts and off-shoots of
Indian culture. Hence, propagating the idea of assuming leadership
of Islamic world by the military rulers of Pakistan has never cut
any ice except that the Anglo-American Axis has used it to
Out of this failure came the idea of
acquiring military power (paramountcy) in which Pakistan has partly
succeeded thanks to the Nuclear bomb and missiles stealthily
obtained from China and N Korea, with the Americans turning a
blind eye for their own short-term gains. Short-term indeed, for the
time has now come to rue.
It is Pakistan which now has the making of
the centre of Islamic terrorism, a failed state and people who will
provide the place, wherewithal and identity to the likes of Bin
Laden. Why the US needs Pakistan is not so much for its designs in
Afghanistan or the oil but to be in a controlling/regulating
position (physically in Pakistan) lest the West or Christianity
Well established civilizations have a
knack to survive, Egypt, Turkey, Iraq, and Iran will all come to
compromising positions if and when the Bush doctrine gets going.
Would the Taliban and Al Qaeda of Pakistan do! They will only get
disseminated into their age-old tribal sects and feel the least of
the losers, as historically they are nothing more than that, sans
Indian culture which in different forms and times flourished in their
P K Jain