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Politicising the Armed Forces has Consequences

  • Published
    27th Sep, 2023


The Anantnag incident occurred due to the Army's misconception that revoking Article 370 had resolved the Kashmir issue and underestimated Pakistan's capabilities.

Political Agenda in Military Strategy

  • Recent Propaganda: The government's manipulation and aimed to cast Pakistan as a consistent threat is a move of distracting the military and civilian population from other critical issues.
  • Vote Bank Consolidation: The success of the Army in CT ops boosted political national image, making it more receptive to political objectives.
  • Alignment with Government: Steps like praising CT ops and fortifying the Line of Control fence further aligned the military with the government's political agenda, sidelining concerns about Pakistan's cross-border terrorism.

Challenges in Deterrence and Military Mindset

  • Neglecting Deterrence: Instead of building credible deterrence against Pakistan, the Indian Army prioritized CT ops, which aligned with the government's political stance.
  • Media-Military Nexus: The government used mainstream media to promote its narrative, discouraging criticism. It portrayed Pakistan as the primary threat and, through subtle manipulation, contributed to communalization.
  • Belief in Propaganda: The Indian Army's belief in government propaganda, portraying Pakistan as a walkover and China as non-threatening, led to a disconnect from actual geopolitical realities in the region.

Impact on Geopolitical Realities

  • Geopolitical Disconnect: The military's misbelief in its own propaganda hinders its ability to understand and respond effectively to actual geopolitical threats, including those posed by Pakistan and China.
  • National Security: The emphasis on CT ops over building credible deterrence compromises India's national security by diverting focus from necessary military preparedness.
  • Communication Gap: The disconnect between the military's perception and actual geopolitical realities poses challenges in formulating an effective national security strategy.
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