10 November 2015

1962: The Sino-Indian War: Reflections of the Past

By Brig Amar Cheema
09 Nov , 2015

The 1962, Sino-Indian war is (rightly) remembered by Indians by its ignominy. While, this is justified, it needs to be heighted that the roots of the debacle lay squarely with the leadership; the war having been lost much before battle was joined. At the same time, it needs to be highlighted that wherever, and whenever directions were clear, despite being ill-equipped, ill-clad and hastily deployed in inhospitable conditions, Indian troops fought well, proving that the Chinese were no supermen – Rezang La being an incomparable example. The problem were ‘lack of nerves’ in the corridors of power in New Delhi and ipso-facto, the ‘enfeebled control’ of higher commanders and not with the soldiers.

J&K is much more than the Valley

By RSN Singh
09 Nov , 2015

The deceit of Kashmiri leaders and separatists in the Kashmir Valley, rooting for Pakistan, has acquired outrageous proportions. These elements largely belong to five districts in Kashmir Valley and constitute not more than 15 percent of the Sunni population. These include pro-Pak manipulators like Yasin Malik, Mirwaiz Omar Farooq, Shabir Shah, Gilani, Asiya Andrabi, and some politicians from the Valley centric political parties.

…within the overall territory of J&K, Valley constitutes less than 10 percent of area…

Boeing and Tata Announce Aerospace Joint Venture in India

By IDR News Network
09 Nov , 2015

• To co-produce aerostructures and pursue integrated systems development opportunities

• To produce Apache fuselages

• Accelerates momentum for “Make in India”

Boeing and Tata Advanced Systems today announced a joint venture (JV) that will manufacture aerostructures for aircraft and collaborate on integrated systems development opportunities in India.

The JV will initially create a manufacturing center of excellence to produce aerostructures for the AH-64 Apache helicopter and to compete for additional manufacturing work packages across Boeing platforms, both commercial and defense. Boeing and Tata Advanced Systems intend to grow the JV partnership in the future with a focus on opportunities to collaborate on development and selling of integrated systems.

“This partnership will capitalize on India’s industrial capability, innovation and talent to contribute to Boeing’s long-term competitiveness and position us for future growth in the global marketplace,” said Chris Chadwick, president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security. “It is a demonstration of our commitment to further accelerate our partnership with one of the world’s fastest growing economies.”

India Successfully Test Fires Brahmos Land Attack Cruise Missile

November 8, 2015

Army successfully test-fires Brahmos land missile 

Pokhran (Raj), Nov 7 (PTI) Army today successfully test fired the nearly 300-km-range Brahmos supersonic land attack cruise missile here.

“At 1000 hrs today, the Indian Army fired Brahmos land- attack cruise missile successfully against a designated target at Pokhran test range in Rajasthan, demonstrating the weapon’s supreme operational capability,” defence officials said.

The missile was test launched by a Mobile Autonomous Launcher (MAL) deployed in full configuration.

The test-fire, carried out in the user-deployment configuration by trained army personnel, met all the mission objectives, they said.

“BRAHMOS missile system, the most lethal and potent weapon system for precision strike available with Indian Army, has proved again its effectiveness in today’s successful launch,” said Sudhir Mihra, Chief of BrahMos Aerospace.

The Army has already inducted three regiments of Brahmos in its arsenal. All are equipped with Block-III version of missile, which was tested on May 8 and 9 this year.

Nothing surprising about situation in Nepal

By RSN Singh
08 Nov , 2015

The present state of Nepal is not a sudden development, but has been building up over the years. The tragedy was that Pakistan obsessed India was non-chalet and dismissive about Nepal. Most defence analysts ignored the country because of their mindset of assessing countries based on their military inventory and strength. This flawed approach led to the splintering of the Soviet Union and will spell disaster for India. If we fail geopolitically, tanks and aircraft remain pieces of metals. This is what has happened in Nepal.

The present Indian approach to Nepal is most appropriate. It was high time that the bluff of a segment of Nepalese residing in Kathmandu with regard to China was called. It is a time to test the Chinese ability to sustain Nepal on any long-term basis. Meanwhile shortages of fuel, cooking gas and essential commodities have crippled Nepal owing to the blockade by Madhesis. A cooking gas cylinder is selling for Rs.6,000 in the black market. Shortages have given rise to violent public mood. This Communists and the Maoists are in the pressure from public to reach out to their benefactor China for solving the crisis. Given the constraints of geography, China can do only that much, and no more. A situation is fast building when the people of Nepal will make the Maoists and Communists scurry for cover against marauding mobs. It will be a sad day for Nepal and the previous dispensation in India, which in first place had put the Maoists on the driving seat based on the Counsel of the mainstream Communist Party in India.

Jawaharlal Nehru – Shiekh Abdullah 1953 Agreement

By Danvir Singh
09 Nov , 2015

Appendix – G

After the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir arrived at its main decisions, representatives of the Indian government and the State met to discuss their implications. This arrangement between Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah and Jawaharlal Nehru agreed upon in July 1952 came to be known as the Delhi Agreement. Its main contents are:

1. The Government of India agreed that while the residuary powers of legislature vested in the Centre in respect of all States other than Jammu and Kashmir, in the case of the latter they vested in the State itself.

2. It was agreed that persons domiciled in Jammu and Kashmir shall be regarded as citizens of India, but the State Legislature was empowered to make laws for conferring special rights and privileges on the State’s subjects.

3. As the President of India commands the same respect in the State as he does in other units of India, Articles 52 to 62 of the Constitution relating to him should be applicable to the State.

Gandhi, the Man of Peace: Who Won the Ultimate War

By Brig K Kuldip Singh
07 Nov , 2015


The picture of the Indian military mind will remain incomplete without acknowledging the nation’s gratitude to the greatest warrior in its contemporary history, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Here was a warrior leader, with a vision of free India, who conceived a shrewd strategy of using peace and non-violence, as the chief weapons, to achieve the objective of liberating Bharta, from the clutches of the most powerful colonial power of the time. Training his weapons of non–violence and non-cooperation at the enemy’s mind, with a view to disinfecting it from its unjust rule, he declared that he loved the English people but abhorred their despicable way of governance. He could throw the British into the shade in argument, in tactics and, the most important of all, to make them feel embarrassed in the cherished field of morality. 

He galvanised the Indian public to rally behind him to fight the war of freedom, with the superior non-war weapons of peace, thus rousing the enemy’s conscience and the world opinion in favour of the Indian cause, which ultimately forced the enemy to quit the battlefield. According to a historian, “Gandhi’s mystique consisted of a union of original ideas, with remarkable knack for tactics and the uncanny insight into the mass mind.” 

High Moral Standing

Prejudiced Bias of the Human Rights Groups and Media in Kashmir

By Col Jaibans Singh
Date : 07 Nov , 2015

Two brave soldiers of the Indian Army, hailing from the Kashmir valley, made the supreme sacrifice in service of the Nation on November, 03. They were killed due to unprovoked fire by Pakistani troops from across the line of control in the Gurez sector. 

While reflecting on the death of two patriotic and brave Kashmiri soldiers due to Pakistani fire, one wonders as to why the Human Rights organisations, that are otherwise so active in the Valley, have not raised any voice of concern at this wanton killing.

The soldiers, Rifleman Tariq Ahmed Lone, resident of Baktoor, Gurez and Rifleman Waseem Ahmad Lone resident of Bandipora were serving with 160 Battalion (Territorial Army). They were killed while patrolling the forward areas in the Gurez sector where there was indication of infiltration attempts by some Pakistani terrorist groups. 

The visibly upset troops if 3 Sikh and 13 Sikh, with whom these brave soldiers were attached, gave a befitting response to Pakistan with heavy retaliatory fire. 

The bodies of the soldiers were handed over to their families with full military honours. The Corps Commander of the Chinar Corps, Lt General SK Dua, paid tribute to the bravery and devotion to duty of the fallen soldiers. The units with which the soldiers had operating were full of praise for their heroism, while guarding the borders of their country in very treacherous terrain and difficult conditions. 

China's New Banking Superstar, Fang Xinghai, Is No Hero

November 9, 2015

The public’s confidence in China’s stock market is at an all-time low. Firms and individuals were fined two billion yuan last month for “manipulating the market,” the president of a state-owned securities firm hanged himself as a result of the probe, and one of the most successful fund managers was arrestedby the police, and his office was raided. As government intervention in markets deepens in China, investor participation and trust continue to fall.

India and China : The Order of Next War

By admin
November 8, 2015 | 

2014 Chumar Incident was just a teaser, The future incursions in this particular region will be just like a slap but the feisty blow will come from Yunnan which covers the “Eastern Sector” of the Order. And, let us be clear about one thing – India may raise couple of mountain strike corps in a short period of time but a deficiency induced air power capabilities will break India’s defensive lines as well as offensive dreams. The Order of Next War between India and China, will be decided in the thin mountain air’s of Aksai Chin and Tibet. Is India really prepared?

China’s Grand Design: Pivot to Eurasia

By George Yeo
November 8, 2015

Eurasia is a large part of the world. In a few decades, it will be the principal driver of the global economy.

China accounts for less than 15% of global GDP. It contributed around 40% to global growth in 2014.

Coastal China has become more expensive than all of Southeast Asia, except Singapore.

Throughout history, Imperial China and Imperial Persia always had good relations.
China is probably the only major country that is able to exercise a national will on a range of topics.

This summer, for the first time, financial turmoil in China created turbulence around the world and even hit New York. This is a historic event and is a portent of things to come.

Yes, China fumbled. It could have avoided certain obvious mistakes which many saw coming, but the Chinese will learn from it. What the episode shows is how the relative weights are shifting in the world way beyond just trade.

China still accounts for less than 15% of global GDP, but its contribution to global growth last year was in the range of 40%. So when that growth slackens, pretty much everyone around the world feels it.

Not surprisingly, people all over the world are concerned about China’s prospects. Is this the beginning of a decline? Are the internal contradictions sharpening, portending further, more serious problems?

Chinese Military Strategy: War Zone Campaign Concept

By Lt Gen JS Bajwa
07 Nov , 2015

The end of the Cold War, denied the PLA the opportunity to fight a protracted, manpower-based total war with deep depth as prospects of foreign invasion on China had reduced. On the other hand, local, limited wars involving national unification and disputes over maritime and land territories were more likely to take place. All these had somewhat reduced the relevance of the PLA’s old comparative advantage in space, manpower and time to PLA’s war planning. Also, the two-decade-long defense modernization had produced some “pockets of technological excellence” within a generally backward PLA.

The traditional PLA MR was a land force, geographic and regional political-based concept while the WZC is an operational-based doctrine and involves all services of the PLA. The WZC, simplified, is the doctrine for conducting a limited war under high-tech conditions. It started with the realization by the PLA planners of their comparative technological inferiority compared to their potential adversaries. The goal of WZC is to use PLA’s selective “Pockets of Excellence” to offset the adversaries’ technological edge.” 1

Our Spies Are Running Hard Trying to Keep Up With the ISIS Threat

Sam Jones
November 7, 2015

Intelligence agencies race to keep up with evolving Isis threat

The trajectory is clear enough: with Russia also suspending all flights to Egypt, there is a growing belief that the disaster was indeed a terrorist attack — potentially making it one of the worst such militant Islamist strikes since September 11 2001.

UK and Middle Eastern intelligence officials told the Financial Times that compelling evidence of a terror plot was now in circulation — shared through bilateral relationships with regional and European governments, Washington and Moscow.

The intelligence picture is nevertheless still confused. Many question why the US, in particular, has not been more outspoken.

The UK — the first country to suspend flights, and dispatch security teams to Egypt — has been the most vociferous in publicly asserting that the attack was a bomb plot. Britain’s evidence, according to those familiar with it, is gleaned from sensitive signals intelligence that picked up conversations between members of the militant group Isis discussing the attack.

With Saudi Weapons and Logistical Support, Syrian Rebels Have Slowed Syrian Army Offensive to a Virtual Standstill

November 8, 2015

Saudi support to rebels slows Assad attacks: pro-Damascus sources

Offensives by the Syrian army and its allies backed by Russian air strikes are going more slowly than expected due to increased Saudi support to rebels, senior sources close to the Syrian government said, as the insurgents pressed a counter attack on Friday.

Rebels captured the village of Atshan in Hama province, the second setback for the government and its allies in that area in as many days, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and rebels said. The nearby town of Morek fell to rebels on Thursday.

Backed by Russian air strikes, the Syrian army and allies including the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps and Lebanon’s Hezbollah have launched several offensives in areas vital to President Bashar al-Assad’s control of western Syria.

But analysts say the government gains have been at best modest, one saying earlier this week the only breakthrough thus far was a minimal advance south of Aleppo. U.S. officials have voiced a similar view, while rebels have said the Russian-backed attacks are failing and they expect more gains for their side.

In a frank assessment of the situation facing the government side, the two senior sources - neither of them Syrian - said the course of battle had been slowed by more military support to the rebels from Saudi Arabia, which is vying for influence with Iran across the Middle East and wants Assad gone from power.

Turkey and Qatar: Close Allies, Sharing a Doomed Syria Policy

November 9, 2015

In recent years, Turkey and Qatar have found much common ground on a host of foreign policy issues. Both Ankara and Doha have sponsored a variety of Sunni Islamist groups, seen as conduits for their geopolitical influence in the fluid Middle East. However, both countries have experienced setbacks from their engagement in some of the region’s conflicts, most notably in Syria.

Last month, the Turkish and Qatari representatives left the Vienna talks on Syria maintaining their conviction that Bashar al-Assad must relinquish power as a precondition for peace. Although Turkey’s shared border with Syria and Qatar’s deep pockets provide the two nations much potential to prolong insurgencies against the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies, it appears unrealistic to imagine Ankara and Doha achieving their objective of toppling the Syrian regime through their current strategies, especially in light of Russia’s military intervention in the country.

Turkey and Qatar’s Quest for Regional Influence:

The Russian Military's 5 Next Generation Super Weapons

November 8, 2015

The Soviet Union might have collapsed in 1991, but modern Russia continues to develop state-of-the-art weapons even if its defense industry is a shadow of what it once was.

In recent years, Russia has launched a host of new developmental programs to replace its Soviet-era arsenal. Though development work has been hurt by economic sanctions and low oil prices, work on myriad projects continue.

While not every part of Russia’s defense industrial complex has weathered the Soviet collapse equally, there are certain areas where Moscow excels. Russia still makes excellent aircraft, armored vehicles, submarines and electronic warfare systems--certainly systems NATO should have its collective eyes on in the months and years to come.


Acknowledging Reality in the U.S.-Israeli Relationship

November 7, 2015

On the eve of a visit by Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Washington, we have gotten yet another of the statements from members of his government that are sufficiently unrestrained or unhinged to cause a flap both in the United States and Israel. While Netanyahu's own comment about the Holocaust being a Palestinian idea is still fresh in our minds, the latest ear-catching remarks come from Ran Baratz, an inhabitant of a West Bank settlement whom Netanyahu has chosen to be chief of hasbara, the selling of Israeli policies overseas. Baratz has posted a trail of entries on Facebook that have insulted, among others, President Rivlin of Israel, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, whom Baratz says has the mental capacity of a 12-year-old, and President Obama, whom he accuses of being anti-Semitic.

Netanyahu has reacted to the flap by saying that these postings do not represent the views of his government and that he will be reviewing the appointment of Baratz. But whether Baratz keeps or loses the job of chief propagandist doesn't really matter. The backtracking that customarily follows these sorts of Israeli comments (including Netanyahu's sort-of retraction of his assertion about the origin of the Holocaust) are less representative of what this Israeli government is about than were the original comments. The government's insulting or embarrassing of senior U.S. officials is nothing new and has happened repeatedly in the past, such as when it announced new construction of settlements in East Jerusalem while Vice President Biden was visiting Israel. The playing of the anti-Semitism card as a response to criticism of Israeli government policy is habitual, on the part of not only the Israeli government but also some of its most loyal supporters in the United States. Throughout the history of Netanyahu occasionally being pushed into saying something that could be interpreted as support for a Palestinian state, his more genuine statements, as indicated by their consistency with his actual policies, have come when he has not been pushed—such as his statement most recently that he intended to “control all of the territory” and “live forever by the sword.”

How to Get Kim Jong-un Out of the U.S.-ROK Alliance's 'Head'

November 9, 2015

North Korea remains the most explosive flashpoint in Asia because of the potential for escalation and major war. As the U.S. Army Chief of Staff, General Mark Milley, puts it, “I don't know when, I don't know how, but at some point in the future, it is highly probable that Korea will be one country again.” He adds, "Whether that happens peacefully or violently is a $64,000 question.”

The question of Korea’s future is further complicated by ceding first-mover advantage to Kim Jong-un. Kim is far more likely to surprise us than we are to surprise him. That’s a problem because we resign the U.S.-Korean alliance to a reactive strategy.

Take the near certainty that Kim would launch a missile to mark the 70thanniversary of the North Korean Workers’ Party on October 10th. The launch never happened and analysts are still debating why. Forecasting Kim’s decisions is a precarious business. Indeed, predicting a date certain for Kim’s provocations may be the best way to prevent them from taking place. But North Korea’s inaction suggests that Pyongyang has crept inside our decision-making loop. Kim thinks he understands what we will do, when we will do it, and how to get under our skin.

How Good Is the SIGINT Intercept Evidence Regarding the Downing of the Russian Airliner in Sinai?

Mark Mazzetti
November 7, 2015

Spotty Intelligence Prompts U.S. Caution in Assessing Jet Crash in Egypt

WASHINGTON — The United States has spent billions over the past 14 years improving its ability to gather intelligence across the globe, much of that money intended to ensure that acts of airborne terrorism like the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, never happen again.

But since a Russian charter jet crashed in the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt last week, a combination of factors has limited the ability of the United States to quickly piece together information sufficient to determine with confidence why the plane fell from the sky.

The Federal Reserve Finds a New, Global Way to Evade Transparency

November 9, 2015

Policy transparency from the Federal Reserve, otherwise known as the Yellen Accord, allows other central banks to anticipate its actions and respond accordingly in their best interest. But forward guidance and transparency are now posing a problem for the Fed, and its recently articulated global mandate is a mechanism for diffusing it.

Global economic conditions can have an effect on the domestic economy of the U.S. This is the context in which the Fed laid out its reasoning for not raising rates in September. But in doing so, the Fed allowed for the potential impacts of the global economy—not the tangible impacts—to influence monetary policy decisions. Potential impacts can be interpreted broadly, and makes it difficult to see the boundaries of the reasoning.

Washington Misreads Beijing's South China Sea Ambitions

November 9, 2015

The South China Sea has become increasingly contested in 2015. Prompted by China’s extensive reclamation program, the complex and multilayered dispute has become a dominant feature in regional diplomacy and strategic dialogue. The contest has been keenly watched, not because it is likely to trigger a great-power conflict, but because of what it tells us about the broader regional dynamics of Sino-American contestation. Indeed nothing seems to illustrate Asia’s period of power transition than the brash upstart defying the dominant power by building islands with strategic intent.

How the GOP Establishment Backed Jeb...and Could End Up with Trump

November 8, 2015
Last month, a warning bell was rung in the pages of National Review. An article appeared there by Eliana Johnson reporting that Republican insiders were now taking seriously the notion that Donald Trump could win their party’s presidential nomination. A piece at NBC News the next day made clear the GOP was no longer complacent about the tirade tycoon and was plotting to take him down.

They have reason to be worried. The Republican establishment’s pretext for dismissing Trump has always been that he’s a bearded lady dancing to calliope music—an indulgent diversion, in other words, but one that voters will inevitably abandon once they spot the big-letter attractions. That hasn’t happened. Trump has now sat at or near the top of the polls for almost 110 days. There are only 87 days left until the Iowa caucuses. Nothing—not even a comparatively feeble debate performance last week—has shaken a quarter of the Republican electorate out of its Trump stupor.

Korea-Japan: No End to the Backroom Brawl

By Kyu Seok Shim
November 08, 2015

The long-awaited bilateral summit between South Korean President Park Geun-hye and Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo on November 2 represented an important and positive step in the troubled relationship between the two most important American allies in the Asia-Pacific region. Though lacking substance and obstructed by disagreement on the comfort women issue, the resumption of track 1 dialogue bodes well for the possibility of further interchange between the two nations. For the Obama Administration, which has been pushing for greater cooperation among its allies in the past few years, the summit signals a positive development for its strategy of building a common front to pressure an increasingly assertive China.

Yet this ostensible goodwill comes at a time when the two East Asian nations have been engaged in a protracted public relations war in the United States, pouring money into securing influence and support from American politicians and civic groups in a manner not much more dignified than mud-slinging.

Japan’s Train Diplomacy

By Shang-su Wu
November 09, 2015

Since the first operational line between Shinbashi and Yokohama opened in 1872, rail has become a major Japanese industry, even creating several milestones, such as the Asia Express and Shinkansen. Although Japan’s exports in this industry are considerable and the country also builds railroad facilities overseas, those deals are mainly either commercial or aid, such as Official Development Assistance (ODA). With its active foreign policy, the second Abe administration offers the Japanese railroad industry the potential to play a salient role in diplomacy.

First, given demographic changes and competition from highways and aviation, domestic Japanese demand for trains is decreasing. Since the period of the “bubble” economy, a number of railroad lines, especially in remote areas, have gone out of service, and this trend is unlikely to stop any time soon, with JR Hokkaido just announcing another wave of local line closures. As a result, Japanese rail manufacturers need to look overseas for new markets.

The forgotten Indians who fought WWI for the Raj


To wear a red poppy in your lapel is a ubiquitous form of homage in the U.K. to soldiers who died in the First World War. Yet in the ceremonies that mark Remembrance Day, there has till now been only a token recall of the contribution of a significant section of the British armed forces – soldiers from the subjugated colonies of British Empire who stood in the frontlines of the Great War.

One and a half million soldiers from undivided India fought in freezing trenches dressed only in khaki cotton gear on the western frontier; in Africa and West Asia; in Palestine, Mesopotamia, Gallipoli and Egypt. Of them, 72,000 died.

The gap in our historical knowledge of soldiers from undivided India, who constituted the biggest segment of troops from the colonies, will now significantly narrow with the publication of a new book by the London-based journalist and author Shrabani Basu.

In For King and Another Country, Ms. Basu — whose earlier biography of Noor Inayat Khan, the courageous Special Operations Executive of Indian origin in WW2, received much critical acclaim — seeks to shine a light on the lives and contributions of soldiers from the subcontinent in WW1.

America's Lethal F-16 Fighter Jet Could Fly for 92 Years (In Theory)

November 8, 2015

Lockheed Martin, which manufactures the iconic F-16 jet fighter, just completed a two-year test that simulated a staggering 92 years of normal flying for one of the single-engine planes.

That’s a long time. And amazingly, the F-16 — a 1990s-vintage Block 50 version — held up just fine. “The airframe was then subjected to several maximum-load conditions to demonstrate that the airframe still had sufficient strength to operate within its full operational flight envelope,” Lockheed noted in a press release.

The point of the test was to provide data for Lockheed’s coming effort to rebuild 300 or so U.S. Air Force F-16s — Block 50s and earlier Block 40s — so they can keep flying at least into the 2030s. The Air Force is struggling to maintain its roughly 1,900-strong fleet of F-15s, F-16s, F-22 and A-10s while also buying new F-35s to replace the oldest F-16s, for starters.

A Lot of What We Think We Know About World War II Is Terribly Wrong

November 6, 2015
The Second World War remains an enduringly fascinating subject, but despite the large number of films, documentaries, books and even comics on the subject, our understanding of this catastrophic conflict, even seven decades on, remains heavily dependent on conventional wisdom, propaganda and an interpretation skewed by the information available. In my new book The War in the West: Germany Ascendant 1939-1941, first in a three-volume history, I am challenging a number of long-held assumptions about the war, many of which are based on truth by common knowledge, rather than through detailed and painstaking research.

My Damascene moment came some years ago when I was being given a tour of the Small Arms Unit at the British Staff College at Shrivenham. I was glancing at aGerman MG42, known as a “Spandau” by the Allies. “Of course, that was the best machine gun of the war,’ I commented, relaying what I’d read in many books.

Misfire: 5 Wars America Should Never Have Fought

November 8, 2015

In the debate that preceded the 2003 Iraq War, we became enamored of the distinction between “wars of choice” and “wars of necessity.” Opponents of the Iraq War decried it as a “choice,” while supporters insisted on its “necessity.” Unfortunately, like many aspects of that debate, that framing was entirely wrong; America has faced vanishingly few wars of “necessity,” but some of our wars of “choice” have nevertheless been good choices. Some, sadly, have not.

As we would expect of any country, not all of America’s wars have been wisely fought, and not all of them were wise to fight. Here are five wars that the United States could have, and should have, stayed out of.

War of 1812:

U.S. Navy: Time to Bring Back the S-3 Viking?

By Ben Ho Wan Beng
November 09, 2015

The boneyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in the U.S. state of Arizona may offer the solution – an interim one perhaps – to two critical capability gaps that carrier air wings (CVWs) of the United States Navy are facing for the foreseeable future. A Hudson Institute report, Sharpening the Spear: The Carrier, the Joint Force and High-End Conflict, which was released earlier this month highlights, among other issues, the relatively short range of the CVW’s strike aircraft and its limited anti-submarine warfare (ASW) repertoire. Also released this month was Retreat from Range: The Rise and Fall of Carrier Aviation, a hard-hitting analysis by Dr. Jerry Hendrix of the Center for a New American Century (CNAS) that alludes to the CVW’s lack of deep-strike capabilities.

The S-3 Viking, which was taken out of service in 2009 in the name of cost savings – a move that has been criticized as short-sighted – could arguably fill these two shortfalls. Eighty-seven S-3s are being kept in mothballs at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Resurrecting most of them could go some way towards addressing the aforementioned capability gaps. After all, the innocuous-looking aircraft had a diverse operational portfolio that included ASW and aerial tanking. Moreover, developing new aircraft, whether manned or otherwise, to address the two shortcomings would take time, and the Viking could serve as a stop-gap measure until these new platforms are brought into service; indeed, the S-3 is believed to be able to fly for another 10,000 to 12,000 hours.