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Pakistans growing and maturing nuclear arsenal

December 10, 2012

Longtime Indian diplomat Shyam Saran published an Op Ed in The Hindu last week detailing the evolution of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal from a small force aimed at deterring her richer and larger Indian neighbor, to one that has developed full spectrum capability – Pakistani warheads today can be delivered by bomb, cruise, or solid rocket missile.  In addition, there are more weapons at their disposal than ever before.  The change in focus by Pakistan’s nuclear strategists was driven by their fear that the US would try to capture or neutralize their smaller force, Saran claims.

India has responded (thus far) not by matching the Pakistani nuclear build up, but by leveraging its superior conventional forces by announcing its “Cold Start” strategy, in which they will launch a massive armor and infantry attack on Pakistan at the slightest provocation.   India retains the ability to second-strike Pakistan, but their primary deterrent is the threat of a loss of Pakistani territory rather than a great loss of life from a WMD strike.

 

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