Delhi, 26 May 2002
has a fairly successful missile programme and the North Korean angle
needs attention. Surely India's intelligence agencies have the
knowledge, as two years ago a North Korean ship was intercepted near
Kandla –– by a quirk of fate and some good work by the Indian
Coast Guard –– with equipment for Pakistan's missile programme.
It was for good reasons that President Bush had designated North
Korea as one of the "axis of evil" nations.
contents of the article below put up by us are by a noted security
affairs expert –– B Raman who was the No 2 in RAW and who should
know. The CONTINUING clandestine relationship between North Korea
and one of America's "frontline allies" in the fight
should be a matter of great concern to us In India and the American
people. This is more so since Prez Musharraf has announced that his
missile tests were successful.
is having a whale of a time discussing the India–Pakistan tensions
and it was totally surprising that PM Vajpayee announced that India
would wait two months before going to war.
Rumsfeld when asked if USA would go to war with Iraq in the future
said it would be foolish for any one to predict such actions or
disclose plans. IDC was convinced there was no immediate threat of
war but the MILITARY STAFF in UK has been swift and calculated that
if India and Pakistan get into a Nuclear war, a predicted two
million deaths would occur.
can bluntly state that there is aggressive hate for Muslims here in
Europe and now this is beginning to take effect for Indians too
because of the war cries –– and let’s be honest no one will
shed a tear if India and Pakistan self destruct.
and UK are clear that India must talk to Pakistan, USA, Russia,
China and Japan and tell them what it wants as the bottom line from
Pakistan and they will try to get it.
we want to do it bilaterally and so be it. We had said earlier that
India's dream will never be realised till Kashmir is resolved.
the Chairman Chiefs of Staff and COAS Gen Padmanabhan has advised
and is confident of war then so be it.
AND THE AXIS OF EVIL –– GHAURI MISSILE
the Government of Pakistan has, since 1975, allowed at least a façade
of democracy and autonomy to Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (POK), it has
kept the NA (Northern Areas--Gilgit and Baltistan) under tight
federal control, imposing an iron curtain in the area. The reasons
are its strategic location adjoining China and the clandestine use
of the Karakoram Highway for the movement of Chinese nuclear
material and missiles.
attention to this in a paper titled "The Northern Areas: Behind
Pakistan's Iron Curtain" published in the September 1996 issue
of the "Strategic Analysis", the monthly journal of the
Institute of Defence Studies And Analysis, New Delhi, this writer
had said: "The Karakoram Highway is also used for the movement
to Pakistan of Chinese nuclear and military equipment like the M-11
missiles, equipment for the nuclear power
station being constructed with Chinese assistance etc. The two
countries do not transport such sensitive equipment by sea to avoid
detection by the USA."
has now been corroborated by the "Washington Times" story
of August 6, 2001, regarding the movement of Chinese missiles to
Pakistan by trucks. "The Hindu" of Chennai (August 7) has
quoted the "Washington Times" as follows: "American
satellite monitoring of the area detected a shipment on May 1 on the
China-Pakistan border. By US intelligence estimates, it was one of
the 12 consignments sent by ship and truck since the beginning of
the past, Pakistan had been receiving its clandestine missile
consignments from North Korea by sea. Since the appointment of Mr.
Richard Armitage as Deputy Secretary of State in the current Bush
Administration, Pakistan and North Korea have been worried because
in a paper on US policy options towards North Korea submitted to the
US House of Representatives on March 4,1999, Mr. Armitage had, inter
alia, recommended as follows: "Should diplomacy fail, the
United States would have to consider two alternative
courses, neither of which is attractive. One is to live with and
deter a nuclear North Korea armed with delivery systems, with all
its implications for the region. The other is pre-emption, with the
Strengthened deterrence and containment.
This would involve a more ready and robust posture, including a
willingness to interdict North Korean missile exports on the high
seas. Our posture in the wake of a failure of diplomacy would
position the United States and its allies to enforce 'red lines.
Pre-emption. We recognize the dangers and difficulties associated
with this option. To be considered, any such initiative must be
based on precise knowledge of facilities, assessment of probable
success, and clear understanding with our allies of the risks.
is understood that during the visit of the Chinese Prime Minister,
Mr. Zhu Rongji, to Pakistan in May,2001, Islamabad had taken up with
China the question of allowing future missile consignments from
North Korea to come to Pakistan by road via China and the Northern
from an article dated August 7, 2001, titled "GILGIT &
BALTISTAN, CHINA & NORTH KOREA" by this writer are available at
firing on May 25, 2002, of a North Korean made Nodong (I ?) missile,
baptised Ghauri by Pakistan in 1998 to hoodwink its own population
and the international community that the missile was the result of research
and development by its own scientists, should be a matter of greater
concern to the Bush Administration in the US and Japan than to India
because it provides one more piece of evidence, if it was needed, of
the nexus between Pakistan's military-intelligence establishment and
the nuclear-missile establishment of North Korea, which has been placed by President
Bush in what he described in his State of the Union Message of
January,2002, as 'the axis of evil.'
nexus was first established during the second tenure of Mrs. Benazir
Bhutto as the Prime Minister (!993-96) when she made a clandestine
visit to Pyongyang and subsequently nursed by the Nawaz Sharif
Government and the Musharraf regime. Pakistan was initially paying
for the missiles and spare parts partly in kind ( Pakistani, US and
Australian wheat to meet North Korea's acute food shortage in the 1990s) and partly through supply
of nuclear technology to help North Korea in the development of its
own military nuclear capability.
the last three or four years, Pakistani nuclear scientists and
engineers have been working in North Korea and North Korean missile
experts in Pakistan. Since September, 2001, the increased and still
increasing cash flow into Pakistan from the USA, the European Union
and Japan has enabled the military regime to pay for the North
Korean missiles and related technology in hard currency.
the beginning of this year, there has been a large-scale movement of
military goods under military escort to Pakistan from China along
the Karakoram Highway. While most of these containers were said to
contain spare parts and replacements for the Chinese arms and
ammunition and aircraft in Pakistan's arsenal, one should not rule
out the possibility that the Chinese might have accepted the
Pakistani request for the movement of the missile-related goods from
North Korea by train and road across China and then along the
carefully-nursed co-operation between North Korea and Pakistan could
not only help North Korea to develop a nuclear capability which
could pose a threat to the USA and Japan, but could also make these
missiles in Pakistan a tempting target for acquisition for the dregs
of the present Afghan war from the Al Qaeda, the Taliban and the
Pakistani jehadi organisations, which have made Pakistan the new
staging ground for their anti-US and anti-West activities.
What Pakistan carried out on the morning of May 25, 2002, was not a
test firing of a missile under development through indigenous
efforts as projected by Musharraf, but the demonstration firing of a
ready-to-fire missile acquired clandestinely from Bush's 'axis of
evil.' It was meant as a demonstration of Pakistan's self-proclaimed
capability to the Pakistani public as well as to its Armed Forces in order to keep up their
morale at a time when Pakistan has come under great pressure from
the international community to stop using terrorism as a weapon
was also meant to refurbish Musharraf's image in the eyes of his
people at a time when his recent referendum stands discredited due
to large-scale rigging, large sections of the political class have
been questioning the wisdom of his continuing in power at a time of
national crisis and there have been growing signs of disquiet in the
military over his erratic ways of functioning and over his hugging desperately the post of the Chief
of the Army Staff (COAS) in the hope of thereby pre-empting any
threat to him from inside the Armed Forces.
received a jolt during the recent referendum when more than 20 per
cent of the votes cast in
the military barracks were reportedly against him whereas only about
three per cent of the civilian votes went against him. This would
show that the support to him in the military was not as overwhelming
as he liked to think. His colleagues and subordinates might not express their opposition to him in public, but did not hesitate to
do so when they had an opportunity of doing so anonymously during
is hoping that his action in carrying out the missile firing would
dilute, if not remove, the reservations in their minds about him and
about his determination to resist outside pressure vis-a-vis India.
India should take note of the firing, there is no reason to be
concerned. India was already aware of Musharraf's nexus with the 'axis of evil' and of Pakistan's possession of the North Korean
missiles under the camouflage of indigenous missiles and one can be
certain that this must have been factored into our thinking and
was essentially an exercise of whistling in the dark by Musharraf.
What is important is that India should highlight to the US, Japan
and other countries the nuclear-missile nexus between Pakistan and
North Korea and the threat that this could pose to them and to
international peace and security. (25 Feb 02)
writer is Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai, India)