Indian Nuclear command and control dilemma
Boger, Dan C.
Lavoy, Peter R.
MetadataShow full item record
The aim of the thesis is to analyze India's nuclear weapons command and control system as it has evolved since the nation's 1998 nuclear weapons tests. The small size of India's nuclear weapons arsenal does not imply that its command and control structure is simple. It requires the same infrastructure, capabilities, and operating systems possessed by countries with larger arsenals of nuclear weapons, though perhaps on a smaller scale. A small arsenal is easier to control than a large one, but it is still vulnerable to attack, and hence the issue of command and control becomes more complex. India's No-First-Use (NFU) policy states that its nuclear weapons will only be used in retaliation against a nuclear attack on Indian territory or on Indian forces anywhere. India's NFU policy makes the command and control of its nuclear weapons look simple, affordable, and easy to implement, but this policy must be examined through the prism of peacetime, crisis, and wartime situations. The smooth transition from peacetime to crisis and, if required, to wartime demands a robust command and control system. This thesis examines the requirements of such a system and provides recommendations for a command and control structure for Indian nuclear operations. The thesis investigates the U.S. command and control system and uses it as a model for a suitable option for India. While NFU has many challenges, it can be effective, provided that India adopts an operational capability of Launch After Attack (LAA), which would require a significant upgrade of command and control structure and procedures. In particular, the thesis demonstrates the role that civilians and military personnel can play to strengthen "minimum credible deterrence" within the established financial, political, and strategic parameters of India.
RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Smith, Stephen A. (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 2002-12);Conventional warfare between India and Pakistan could inadvertently escalate to nuclear warfare. Asymmetries in military doctrine and capability undermine deterrence stability and could lead to the use of nuclear weapons ...
Bethmann, Ronald Clinton; Malloy, Karen Allene (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 1989-03);The authors present an introduction to command and control (C2) and establish a foundation for understanding the complex nature of C2 and the C2 process. A historical perspective is presented which demonstrates the importance ...
Lippold, Kirk S. (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 1989-03);This thesis will address the relative ability of the command and control systems of the United States and Soviet Union to support a protracted nuclear war. It will address the organizations as well as the various systems ...