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National

March 10, 2015
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Shaheen-III to force India to talk peace

National

March 10, 2015

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ISLAMABAD: Shaheen-III, an intermediate-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile with a range of 2,750 kilometres, went through a successful launch. Shaheen III, the solid-fuelled missile, has been jointly developed by the National Engineering and Scientific Commission (Nescom), a civilian controlled science and technology research organisation, and the Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (Suparco), the space agency of the Government Pakistan mandated to conduct research and development in space technology and space science.
Shaheen-III’s 2,750-kilometer range means two things. One - each and every one of India’s nuclear safe heaven is now covered. Two – Shaheen-III is threat-specific to threats originating from within 3.2 million square km of India’s land and water mass. And what that means is that Shaheen III has no extra-regional ambitions.
India is the world’s largest buyer of weapons and by the latest count India’s weapon purchases amount to three times as much as China’s.Over the next seven years, India is bent upon spending a colossal $130 billion importing arms, weapon systems and killing machines. India’s Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) that began in the 80s has already produced at least half a dozen missile systems including Prithvi, Agni, Trishul, Akash and Nag missile systems.
Going by the sheer number of missile tests conducted, Pakistan does not seem to be getting into an arms race with India (as India has conducted six times as many tests as has Pakistan). On the face of it, Pakistan does not seem to be aiming at competing with India but Pakistan’s aims seem to revolve around the creation of a credible deterrence and a credible deterrence is bound to strengthen strategic stability.
The Indian missile programme has been a destabilising factor for the entire region. Shaheen-III seems to be a reaction to Indian-generated threats. Shaheen III is capable of carrying nuclear as well

conventional warheads and the time of flight is estimated to be anywhere from 686 seconds to 1,038 seconds.
Pakistan’s reaction to Indian missile threats seems to be based on two principles-coverage and India’s nuclear safe heavens and credible minimum deterrence. The two put together-coverage and credible minimum deterrence-is actually strategic communication directed at India to come and talk peace.Someone intelligent once said, “War is a cowardly escape from the problems of peace.”

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