10 October 2016

Operation Ginger: What you need to know

October 9, 2016 

Documents pertaining to the 2011 surgical strikes, code-named Operation Ginger, conducted by India across the LoC after a Pakistani attack on a remote Army post in Gugaldhar ridge in Kupwara claimed 6 soldiers. Photo: Special Arrangement

July 30, 2011 - An Army post near LoC in Kupwara, comprising six men, is raided by Pakistani Army. Two personnel - Jaipal Singh Adhikari and Lance Naik Devender Singh are killed and beheaded. When they were about to behead the third personnel, a quick reaction team arrives and Pakistani Army fled with two heads. Immediately after this, Operation Ginger is planned. Three targets are chosen.

Sometime in August, Army recovers a mobile phone from a militant’s body, which contained a video clip where some jihadis and Pakistani Army personnel are seen dancing around the severed heads of Adhikari and Singh.

Army plans Operation Ginger for August 30, 2011, a day before Eid when Pakistan would be least expecting any retaliation.

Seven reconnaissance — physical and technical are carried out with the help of UAVs and human intelligence.

Three targets are chosen — Police Chowki near Jor, Hifazat and Lashdat lodging points across LoC in Kupwara.

It is decided to spring an ambush on Police chowki-Jor to inflict maximum casualty as it housed 40 Pakistani Army people.

August 29, 2011: Four teams leave for the Police Chowki, which is actually an Army post located 400 yards away from the LoC. The troops reach their launchpad at 3 am and stay put till 10 pm.

Around 12 midnight, the teams cross the LoC and take position metres away from the Police Chowki around 4 am.

From 4 am to 7 am, the teams fan out in different directions. They ring the area around the police chowki with claymore mines.

At 7 am, the troops observe four Pakistani soldiers walking towards the ambush site, they are trapped in the mines and fall down. Indian Army lobs grenades and opens fire at the four men. One of them is swept away after he fell down in a river stream flowing along. Anticipating immediate response from the Police Chowki, the team decapitated the three available bodies and collected the severed heads, weapons, mobile phones, insignias and their name badges.

To inflict more casualties, the team planted pressure IED’s beneath the bodies, which would have exploded had anyone lifted them.

Two Pakistani personnel who rushed from the police chowki, were killed by the another team waiting near the ambush site.

Two other Pakistani Army men tried to trap the demolition team, another special party waiting a little behind eliminated these two with small arms fire.

The operation lasted 45 minutes.

The first team came back at 12 noon and the last party reached by 2.30 pm.

In the meantime, the GOC 28 Infantry Division received a message that one of the jawans accidentally fell on a mine and injured his finger, he is the only one who has not returned. Finally at 6 pm, the jawan showed up.

*****In India, a Military Strategy Guided by Precision

By Omar Lamrani


Introducing tactical nuclear weapons into India and Pakistan's military calculations will make operations using large-scale conventional forces less desirable.

India will modify its strategy to account for its growing need to use limited military strikes, narrow in scope and duration, to avoid a potential nuclear exchange.

India's so-called "surgical deterrence" strategy will be less likely to trigger a wider war with Pakistan, though escalation will remain a risk.


South Asia is not known for its stability, but India and Pakistan's military strategies could lead to greater insecurity in the region. Nuclear weapons, particularly tactical nuclear weapons that are launched on the battlefield, have been introduced into India and Pakistan's military calculations, causing both sides to re-evaluate their policies. Originally, India's unofficial military doctrine, Cold Start, relied on rapid, flexible conventional military operations to strike Pakistan while avoiding a protracted war that could increase the likelihood of nuclear retaliation. But Pakistan countered by developing a tactical nuclear response that made the prospect of large-scale fighting too risky for New Delhi and Islamabad. Nevertheless, India has sought alternate forms of deterrence against Pakistan's asymmetric tactics. Using more limited military strikes, or "surgical deterrence," India will decrease the chances of a wider conflict erupting. Still, escalation will remain an underlying risk.

*** UK Stands Up GCHQ National Cyber Security Center in London

Mathew J. Schwartz 
Source Link

The U.K. government on Oct. 3 launched a new National Cyber Security Center to help British organizations better defend against cyberattacks and respond to security incidents.

The new center is part of GCHQ, Britain's signals intelligence and cybersecurity agency that's comparable to the U.S. National Security Agency. It's being led by Ciaran Martin, a career civil servant who previously helped GCHQ connect with private industry via his position as director general for government and industry cybersecurity.

"Our role is helping to make the U.K. the safest place to live and do business online. So we're going to tackle the major threats from hostile states and criminal gangs," Martin says in a statement. "But we're also going to work tirelessly to automatically protect people from those smaller scale and deeply damaging attacks that cause so much disruption and frustration. We'll also continue our work helping people and businesses understand better what they need to do to protect themselves."

A Modi-fied Operational Art against Pakistan’s Hybrid Threat

Dheeraj P.C.

The new Modi-fied operational art is an unprecedented change in India’s response to Pakistan’s hybrid threat because India never had an operational art. The absence of it gave Pakistan a tacit approval of its adventurism in India leaving strategic decision making in India nearly impossible.

The Indian Army conducted surgical strikes on the terrorist launch pads across the Line of Control (LOC) in retaliation to terrorist strikes on an Army base in the Uri Sector, Jammu and Kashmir. Although popular media houses and others have regarded the strikes to be a knee-jerk reaction there seems to be much more than what meets the eye.

The Love Story of a Soldier

Lt Gen H S Panag

He was an Indian soldier, she was a Kashmiri. Could this have a happy ending?

Spring was in full bloom in the Vale of Kashmir and sitting in the 100-year-old Chinar Hut, as the Northern Army Commander, I looked back upon the first five months of my tenure with mixed feelings. Two hundred terrorists had been eliminated; summer posture for counter infiltration was in place; the snow-damaged fence was being repaired at a feverish pitch; but human rights violations were continuing to be a matter of concern.

Insurgency had been on the wane since 2004 and with a concerted effort by commanders at all levels, there had been no human rights violations from either deliberate or ‘rogue’ operations. However, due to tension, over-enthusiasm and at times panic, there had been inadvertent violations leading to resentment amongst the people. There were allegations galore. A 2005-2006 case of ‘fake encounters’ in the Ganderbal area being pinned on the Indian Army turned out to be the handiwork of a rogue police officer, for instance.

Kashmir: The new context

The big failure in understanding Kashmir has been to see it in isolation of the larger trends and changes that have taken place in India’s democracy, federalism, political structure, dominant ideological paradigm, economic policy and social value system

No change—political, economic or social—that has taken place in the country seems to impact the framework and perspective within which Kashmir is understood. It is my premise that the big failure in understanding Kashmir has been to see it in isolation of the larger trends and changes that have taken place in India’s democracy, federalism, political structure, dominant ideological paradigm, economic policy and social value system.

Even global paradigm shifts in notions of sovereignty and territoriality have never informed the debate on Kashmir, which even in this day and age invokes “the jugular vein and crowning glory” status of Kashmir!

It is very evident that India is in a transition phase where nationalism is being redefined. A major challenge has been posed to the structure of nationhood inherited from the nationalist struggle and consolidated over the early decades of independent India. New forces have appeared on the political horizon, leading to a redrawing of the cultural boundaries of the nation. And a result has been a change in the concept of nationalism.

The same is true of regionalism. The rise of regionalism in India has meant an improved articulation of political, social and economic aspirations of the sub-nations, like Jammu and Kashmir. The illegitimate symbiotic relationship with the state and its repressive measures and civil bureaucracy, which had imparted an authoritarian strand to governance of the centre, has been substantially broken in many parts of the country.

Pakistan's Civilians Form a United Front on National Security

By Hamzah Rifaat

Pakistan’s civilian stakeholders have shown unity at a time of rising tensions with India. 

In the wake of rising tensions between India and Pakistan, the central political leadership in Islamabad gathered together to express its collective resolve on upholding national security, thwarting aggression from India, and ensuring that any Indian adventurism would be met with a hefty response. This was a heartening development for most ordinary Pakistani citizens, given that the country’s political landscape has often been characterized by bitter rivalries, conflicts of interest, and disagreements over issues such as Karachi, the status of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, and the Prime Minister’s ongoing Panama Papers-driven controversy.

Political parties from across the spectrum, ranging from the progressive Pakistan People’s Party to the Pakistan Muslim League (Quaid), have called attention to the importance of protecting national sovereignty as well as continuing Pakistan’s advocacy for the Kashmiri struggle in international forums, which is a salient aspect of Pakistan’s foreign policy.

Why Is Pakistan Expelling Afghan Refugees?

By Umair Jamal

Over the last couple years, Pakistan has intensified its efforts to repatriate Afghan refugees. The Pakistani government’s attempts in this regard have surged inthe current year with more than 200,000 refugees repatriated this year, half of which occurred in September alone.

After the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, Afghan refugees started to pour into Pakistan. It is estimated that over the last thirty years, about three million Afghan refugees have moved to Pakistan. A large part of the registered Afghan refugees have lived in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Baluchistan province and the rest are scattered all across the country.

In 2002, Pakistan signed an agreement with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCHR) and Afghanistan for a voluntary repatriation of Afghan refugees. Since 2002, besides a gradual and voluntaryreturn, Pakistan has never pushed for repatriation of Afghan refugees. Now, however, Pakistan has warned toforcefully expel thousands of Afghan refugee families if they don’t leave voluntarily.

Pakistan in the margins

Harsh V. Pant 

In search of options against Pakistan after the Uri terror attack, India has been putting pressure on Pakistan by using multiple levers of power. Militarily, the Indian army has conducted "surgical strikes" on terrorist bases along the Line of Control with Pakistan resulting in significant casualties "to the terrorists and those who are trying to support them". Politically, New Delhi is reviewing its stand on the Most Favoured Nation status and Indus Waters Treaty. And diplomatically, it is seeking Pakistan's global and regional isolation. 

Towards that end, the already moribund regional organization, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, has come in handy. India decided to play the Saarc card, and with a vengeance. India has said, "In the prevailing circumstances", it is unable to participate in the November Saarc summit in Islamabad. This is an unprecedented move in many respects, but a struggling Saarc has finally found some use for India - to signal its disapproval of Pakistan. India's move has found support in the region with three other members - Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Bhutan - also pulling out of the meet immediately, leading to its suspension for the time being. Sri Lanka and Nepal also joined in rebuking Pakistan. 


07 October 2016

Sheikh Hasina and her Government have been battling jihadis within and outside the political system. The Prime Minister’s determination to stamp out extremism has been hailed by world leaders, including India

Ever since the massacre of 22 people, 17 of them non-Muslim foreigners, at the Gulshan café by home-grown Islamic terrorists of Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, Bangladesh (JMB), Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her Government have made significant headway in their fight against terror by eliminating the Canadian-born mastermind Tamim Chowdhury and six of his trusted lieutenants responsible for the most heinous crime committed in the name of jihad in Bangladesh’s history. In four successive raids, her security forces swooped on the secret hideouts of the jihadis, killing six of them and arresting seven, including three females. This was a serious blow to the JMB terror group’s plan to execute more Gulshan-like-mayhem.

The purpose of carrying out mass killings similar to that of Gulshan was to create an anarchic situation which would sap the Government’s morale and the people’s faith in Sheikh Hasina’s ability to govern, triggering popular unrest and lawlessness. In such a situation, it would be easier for the terror groups to make a determined bid for power.

Sheikh Hasina took the challenge of the JMB and other Islamic terror groups to dislodge her democratically elected Government from power and worked with single-minded devotion for their extermination. She strengthened her Government’s anti-terror apparatus, especially the intelligence wing, to ensure that anti-terror squads got timely and correct information on terror outfits and their leaders,their hideouts and their plans and programmes. This strategy paid immediate dividend with information pouring in on Tamim and his Islamic Canadian and other jihadi connection. The Gulshan killing had so outraged the Bangladeshi sentiment that people spontaneously provided tip-offs and information on the jihadis.

Have Asia’s Middle Powers Comes of Age?

By Chietigj Bajpaee

Asia’s middle powers are emerging as key fulcrums of strategic change in the region. The decision by the Philippines to virtually ignore the ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration-based tribunal on the validity of China’s claims in the South China Sea; South Korea’s decision to deploy the THAAD missile defense system; and the reorientation of Indonesia’s defense policy towards a greater focus maritime security illustrate this emerging facet of Asian geopolitics. When analyzing geopolitical developments in Asia, there is a tendency to focus on the actions of the region’s major powers: the U.S.-China relationship is at the top of the totem pole alongside the actions of Japan and to a lesser extent India. However, recent developments have illustrated that sometimes the key drivers of strategic change have come from below.

South China Sea: Indonesian Military Stages Massive Natuna Sea Exercise

By Ankit Panda

On Thursday, the Indonesian Armed Forces (Tentara Nasional Indonesia, or TNI) held their largest exercises to date off the resource-rich Natuna archipelago in the South China Sea. The exercise marks another notch in Jakarta’s approach to the Natuna archipelago, where tensions have risen with China after a series of incidents involving Indonesian naval and maritime law enforcement authorities and their Chinese counterparts. Indonesia, under President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, has placed a particular emphasis on safeguarding its maritime sovereignty, in particular against illegal foreign fishing trawlers.

The scale of Thursday’s exercise stands out. Reuters notes that “hundreds of military officials” and “about 70 jets” were involved in the exercise, which included “a dog fight and dropping bombs on targets off the coast.” Underlining the high degree of executive importance being attached to the Natuna region, Jokowi himself watched the exercise from Ranai, the capital of the Natuna archipelago, which is part of Indonesia’s Riau Islands province. Thursday marked Jokowi’s second visit to the area since June, when he inspected naval patrols in the Natuna Sea. In July, Jokowi’s cabinet met on board a warship in the Natuna region as well.

China Investments Raise Economic Risks – Analysis

By Michael Lelyveld 
OCTOBER 6, 2016

As economic growth weakens, more investment is flowing out of China than is flowing in, raising questions about the country’s prospects and the government’s goals.

In the first eight months of the year, China’s non-financial outbound direct investment (ODI) jumped 53.3 percent from a year earlier to over 775 billion yuan (U.S. $116 billion), the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) reported.

Over the same period, foreign direct investment (FDI) in China rose by a much milder 4.5 percent to 548.8 billion yuan (U.S. $82.2 billion), making the country a net capital exporter this year.

While China portrays its soaring overseas investment as a sign of influence and strength, the outflow has raised concerns about declining opportunities for capital in the country, which has been a magnet for FDI over the past 30 years.

According to a report by the New York-based Rhodium Group, China had previously run FDI surpluses since record keeping started in 1982, with average inflows of U.S. $200 billion (1.3 trillion yuan) a year between 2010 and 2014.

Accounts differ on when the balance shifted in China.

Pentagon's ‘Third Offset’ in the US ‘Rebalance to Asia’

Steven Stashwick

Speaking to sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USSCarl Vinson at the end of September, Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter provided a clear and succinct explanation of what the Defense Department has done during the Obama administration’s “Pivot” to Asia. He also placed the Defense Department’s efforts in Asia in the context of his broader initiative, the “third offset,” which seeks to leverage new technologies and concepts to preserve the United States’ decisive military advantages. Various critics complain the pivot (later rebranded as the “Rebalance”) was as a failure, under-resourced, or an empty promise. Simply comparing numbers of U.S. and Chinese ships and aircraft might give credence to the idea of a hollow effort, which is why it is important to understand the role of emerging “third offset” capabilities and operational concepts for the military component of the rebalance to deter regional aggression.

The Road to Hell in Iraq and Syria

There is nothing pretty about the rubble left behind by the collapse of the U.S. strategy for Syria. One of the most horrifying civil wars in modern history has gotten worse. Russia, Iran, and Assad have all gained at the expense of the United States and its allies, and no credible scenario has promised an early end to the civil war, to the steady build up of factional sectarian and ethnic tensions, or to the long-term threat posed by Islamic extremism and terrorism.

One cannot doubt that the Obama Administration and Secretary Kerry have had good intentions—intentions that might have worked had the other actors shared the same goals as the United States. The problem is that it was never clear that any of the other actors in the conflict—other than our European allies and key UN diplomats like Staffan De Mistura—did share those intentions. The end result is that those good intentions have helped pave the road to hell. The Obama Administration now faces the choice between lame duck and highly uncertain escalation to new levels of forces, and the situation seems likely to get substantially worse between now and when a new Administration will be able to act.
A Plague From Both Their White Houses

Tracking The Hasam Movement, Egypt's Ambitious New Militant Group

06 October 2016

A budding Egyptian militant group known as the Hasam Movement appears to be getting bolder in its choice of targets and tactics. On the evening of Sept. 29, a bomb placed inside a car exploded just after a vehicle carrying Egyptian Assistant Attorney General Zakaria Abdul Aziz passed by, not long after leaving the public prosecutor's building.

Though Aziz was not injured in the explosion, which occurred in Cairo's Jasmine 5th District - reportedly near Aziz's home - a bystander was wounded. The incident presumably took place along the route Aziz routinely follows on his way home from work.

As initial reports of the bombing emerged, the attack seemed uncannily familiar: Its target and tactics echoed those in a series of previous attempts against high-ranking officials in Cairo, including the June 2015 assassination of Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat and the botched September 2013 plot against Interior Minister Ibrahim Mohammed. At first blush, the similarities between the cases raised suspicions that the attack was conducted by the same group, a team of operatives led by former Egyptian special operations forces officer Hisham Ashmawy. The Ashmawy cell originally belonged to militant group Ansar Beit al-Maqdis but defected when the rest of the organization pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State. (Ashmawy and his followers remained loyal to al Qaeda.)

Upon closer inspection, though, we quickly discovered a number of telling differences in the Aziz attack. The bomb, which Egyptian officials estimated to have used about 7 pounds of TNT, was much smaller than the devices in the Barakat and Mohammed assassination attempts. Based on the damage done to the vehicle holding the device, the bomb may have actually been a little larger than officials said, but the lack of notable damage done to nearby buildings still suggests it was nowhere near as big as the powerful devices used in the 2015 and 2013 plots. In fact, rather than a true car bomb, the explosive was more akin to a bomb placed inside a car.

Russia Confirms Deployment Of S-300 Air Defense Missiles To Syria

Russia’s Defense Ministry has confirmed that it has deployed an S-300 antiaircraft missile system to its Mediterranean naval base at Tartus, Syria.

In a statement issued on October 4, the Russian ministry said the missile battery was “intended to ensure the safety of the naval base” and the Russian Navy’s task force off the Syrian coast.

The long range surface-to-air missile system was designed to strike aircraft and cruise missiles, as well as to intercept ballistic missiles, as part of the air defense of military bases and large industrial facilities.

Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said the S-300 system would bolster a similar air defense missile system that is mounted on The Moskva, a guided missile cruiser in the area.

Why Russia Is Threatening the US in Syria

By George Friedman

The Global Drama. This week’s piece, written by George Friedman, focuses on the economic crash of 2008 and the shockwaves it has sent throughout the world. This weekly will address topics and trends that are essential for gaining an understanding of geopolitics and the dynamics of the world in which we live.

Moscow’s ability to back up its rhetoric is questionable.

Yesterday the United States announced that it was breaking off talks with Russia over implementing a cease-fire agreement on Syria. Washington accused Moscow of failing to live up to its commitments in the Sept. 9 deal. It has been a year since Russia intervened in Syria. During that year, combat has continued and intensified. Apart from saving President Bashar al-Assad’s regime from hypothetical defeat, the Russians have achieved nothing particularly decisive in Syria. The Russians’ drama in Syria has come from dealing with the United States and, even more, with Turkey. However, the balance of power now appears to be shifting in favor of Assad and his Russian supporters. A confrontation with the United States is no longer inconceivable.

The Weird Logic Behind Russia's Alleged Hacking

October 6, 2016

One of the biggest stories of the U.S. election cycle has been the allegedly Russian hack into the computer network of the Democratic National Committee. Sidestepping the embarrassing implications of what the hack revealed about the DNC’s behavior during the primaries, the Democratic campaign, along with major U.S. news organizations, framed the story as one of Russia’s nefarious meddling in American democracy. That story has since become central to the U.S. election. In the first presidential debate, it was a key point of disagreement between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Both candidates emphasized the cyber threat, but while Clinton laid the blame for the DNC attacks squarely with Russia, Trump suggested that the hack could have been perpetrated by anyone, from a state security organization to a lone individual.

The case is much more complicated than it may appear.

The evidence for Russian involvement in the hack is based upon research done by three independent security firms, which discovered that similar hacking techniques had been used in previous attacks by operatives allegedly working for Russian state security. Soon after these findings were released, however, an individual hacker calling himself Guccifer 2.0 came forward to dispute them. Identifying himself as a Romanian unaffiliated with the Russian government, he claimedthat he had carried out the DNC hacks alone and said he had the evidence to prove it. While experts agreed that his evidence—previously unreleased emails and other data pilfered from the DNC—was authentic, they also made the casethat it contained further proof of a Russian plot:

The American Brexit Is Coming Why rejecting the Trans-Pacific Partnership would be a colossal mistake.


At a recent White House meeting, President Barack Obama assembled an eclectic cast of characters: the CEO of IBM, one of the largest corporations in the world; a trio of serving politicians from both parties comprising the mayor of Atlanta and governors of Louisiana and Ohio; a former secretary of the Treasury; a recent mayor of New York City, and the dean of a graduate school of international relations and former supreme allied commander (that’s me). Despite wildly divergent backgrounds and political affiliations, everyone in the room agreed on one thing: the value of free trade globally, with particular urgency on the need for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

terly October 2016 Making data analytics work for you—instead of the other way around

By Helen Mayhew, Tamim Saleh, and Simon Williams

Does your data have a purpose? If not, you’re spinning your wheels. Here’s how to discover one and then translate it into action.

The data-analytics revolution now under way has the potential to transform how companies organize, operate, manage talent, and create value. That’s starting to happen in a few companies—typically ones that are reaping major rewards from their data—but it’s far from the norm. There’s a simple reason: CEOs and other top executives, the only people who can drive the broader business changes needed to fully exploit advanced analytics, tend to avoid getting dragged into the esoteric “weeds.” On one level, this is understandable. The complexity of the methodologies, the increasing importance of machine learning, and the sheer scale of the data sets make it tempting for senior leaders to “leave it to the experts.”

But that’s also a mistake. Advanced data analytics is a quintessential business matter. That means the CEO and other top executives must be able to clearly articulate its purpose and then translate it into action—not just in an analytics department, but throughout the organization where the insights will be used.

Russia expands Pacific bomber patrols near US bases

6 October 2016 

Russia has prepared a new strategic bomber division in the far east to patrol a huge area of the Pacific where the US military is especially active.

Tupolev Tu-22M3 and Tu-95MS bombers will fly from Siberia as far as Hawaii, Guam and Japan, all of which host major US naval and air bases, Russia's Izvestia daily reported.

Russia has sent Tu-22M3s on bombing runs in Syria and Tu-95s regularly carry out patrols near Western Europe.

Nato has criticised Russia's flights.

Britain's RAF and other Nato air forces regularly scramble fighters to monitor the Russian bombers' movements over the North Sea and Atlantic. 

A Russian defence ministry official told Izvestia dozens of the Tupolevs would be based at Belaya and Ukrainka, in eastern Siberia.

How digital finance could boost growth in emerging economies

By James Manyika, Susan Lund, Marc Singer, Olivia White, and Chris Berry
September 2016 

How digital finance could boost growth in emerging economies

Delivering financial services by mobile phone could benefit billions of people by spurring inclusive growth that adds $3.7 trillion to the GDP of emerging economies within a decade. 

Two billion individuals and 200 million micro, small, and midsize businesses in emerging economies today lack access to savings and credit. Even those with access must often pay high fees for a limited range of products. Economic growth suffers. But a solution is right in people’s hands: a mobile phone. Digital finance—payments and financial services delivered via mobile phones and the Internet—could transform the lives and economic prospects of individuals, businesses, and governments across the developing world, boosting GDP and making the aspiration of financial inclusiona reality. 

A new report from the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), Digital finance for all: Powering inclusive growth in emerging economies, is the first attempt to quantify the full impact of digital finance. In addition to extensive economic modeling, the report draws on the findings of field visits to seven countries—Brazil, China, Ethiopia, India, Mexico, Nigeria, and Pakistan—and more than 150 expert interviews. It also lays out the key conditions that will need to be met to capture the benefits. 

The research finds that widespread adoption and use of digital finance could increase the GDPs of all emerging economies by 6 percent, or a total of $3.7 trillion, by 2025. This is the equivalent of adding to the world an economy the size of Germany, or one that’s larger than all the economies of Africa. This additional GDP could create up to 95 million new jobs across all sectors of the economy. 

N.S.A. Contractor Arrested in Possible New Theft of Secrets

Jo Becker, Adam Goldman, Michal S. Schmidt and Matt Apuzzo

WASHINGTON — The F.B.I. secretly arrested a National Security Agency contractor in recent weeks and is investigating whether he stole and disclosed highly classified computer code developed to hack into the networks of foreign governments, according to several senior law enforcement and intelligence officials.

The theft raises the embarrassing prospect that for the second time in three years, an insider has managed to steal highly damaging secret information from the N.S.A. In 2013, Edward J. Snowden, who was also a contractor for the agency, took a vast trove of documents that were later passed to journalists, exposing N.S.A. surveillance programs in the United States and abroad.

The contractor was identified as Harold T. Martin III, 51, of Glen Burnie, Md., according to a criminal complaint filed in late August. He was charged with theft of government property, and unauthorized removal or retention of classified documents. During an F.B.I. raid of his house, agents seized documents and digital information stored on electronic devices. A large percentage of the materials found in his house and car contained highly classified information.

5 Blockchain Technologies You Should Be Watching

John Rampton

Blockchain is much bigger than bitcoin. There is staggering innovation in the area of distributed ledgers, but most of it will be under the radar for anyone who hasn't immersed themselves in that world. Here are five technologies and trends to watch.

Smart contracts

Bitcoin decentralises money, removing the requirement for a middleman and enabling trustless peer-to-peer transactions. Now, imagine you could do the same for computer code. The result would be a programme that executed instructions when certain conditions were met, and no one could stop it because it ran on a virtual computer distributed on thousands of different machines across the planet. Smart contracts do just that. Ethereum is the most famous smart contracts platform, though that reputation tipped over into infamy when its flagship application went rogue. Smart contracts do exactlywhat you tell them to; they operate under a 'code is law' model.

Services integrating cyber and traditional military forces

By: Mark Pomerleau

Within Cyber Command’s Cyber Mission Force — established in 2012 to include 133 teams in varying roles that reached initial operational capability at the end of September 2016 and will reach full operational capability in 2018 — there are the service cyber components. They work to defend service-specific networks and missions as opposed to the joint cyber effort. Within this construct, the services have begun to integrate their cyber warriors with traditional military units as cyber now touches most everything.

For example, Air Force Chief Information Officer Lt. Gen. William Bender has described the need for an "organic cyber capability" for the Air Force separate from the joint CYBERCOM mission.

“There’s a clear recognition that our service needs an organic cyber capability to get after much of what Cyber Command … just doesn’t have the bandwidth to do or simply not in their charter, and it’s critical [to the] Air Force,” he said at a Defense Writers Group breakfast in July.

NSA has lost some terrorists because of encryption, its top lawyer says

Harriet Taylor

The NSA has lost some terrorists because of their adoption of strong encryption, but the agency is supportive of the use of the technology, it’s top lawyer said Wednesday.

Glenn Gerstell, general counsel of the National Security Agency, made the comments at the Cambridge Cyber Summit at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
David A. Grogan | CNBC

“We are big supporters of encryption,” said Gerstell. “Encryption is more of a law enforcement issue.”

He said the NSA sees ISIS terrorists using end-to-end encryption, and that has prevented the agency from finding out the key information about those bad actors.

The widespread availability of encryption technology requires the government to employ additional resources to monitor terrorists, said Gerstell. He declined to elaborate on specific sources and methods.

Cyber, electronic warfare integration critical for future Army ops

October 6, 2016 

The Army has been discussing convergence and integration when it comes to cyberspace, the electromagnetic spectrum and the signal corps, going so far asestablishing a new headquarters in the Pentagon to focus on policy, strategy, and requirements for cyber, electromagnetic spectrum and information operations. 

Army merging electronic warfare into new cyber directorateThe new commander of the Cyber Center of Excellence at Fort Gordon, Maj. Gen. John Morrison, described how he is looking into these three core competencies — cyber, EMS and signal. At the annual Association of the United States Army conference, he mulled over how the Army can integrate capabilities from across cyber, electronic warfare (EW) and signal so that there are end-to-end solutions that are integrated and complementary rather than redundant. 

Speaking at a panel discussion at the annual Association of the United States Army conference, Morrison hit on a popular concept emerging across the services called multi-domain battle, which involves synergizing war fighting across all domains — air, land, sea, space and cyber. Morrison noted that cyber is a fairly new domain of war fighting, which has only been an operational domain for the last three years or so, but operations within this domain are inherently joint. 

In terms of converging this activity, he said that the Army is well on its way to growing 41 cyber teams to meet the requirements set out by the Pentagon and Cyber Command. “We are the only service at this point that is truly on the glide path to build the combat power we need to,” Morrison asserted. 

Army merging electronic warfare into new cyber directorate

The Army has disbanded its electronic warfare division, though this is not the end for its staff or electromagnetic spectrum capabilities. Instead, the Army will incorporate the EW division into a newly established cyber directorate at the Pentagon within the Army G-3/5/7, according to officials at Army headquarters.

The new directorate is moving quickly, reaching initial operating capability in June, and sources say they expect full operational capability in August. Headed by Brig. Gen. Patricia Frost, who's up for promotion to major general, the new directorate will encompass cyber, electronic warfare and information operations. 

But Army officials emphasize that they aren’t getting rid of electronic warfare in the move to combine under the directorate. Rather, among the directorate’s chief missions will be handling the policy, strategy and requirements for all three areas. According to a Defense Department source the directorate eventually will comprise five divisions under Frost.

Frost was named to the elevated position in March, according to announcement from the Defense Department.

"The Army senior leaders have recognized this is important and we need to put a more focused attention on this field," Col. Jeffrey Church, formerly the head of the Army’s Electronic Warfare Division, told FCW in May at the C4ISR & Networks conference. Church added that placing these capabilities under the same hat can empower commanders to make better decisions for desired effects. “Some days that might be a cyber effect. Some days that might be an electronic warfare effect. Some days that might be a tank round effect,” he said.

Fifth Generation Aircraft: Battlefield Air Support Mission

Air Marshal Anil Chopra

Sukhoi PAK-FA

The IAF has enough air assets to support the operationally very important Battlefield Air Support (BAS) mission. In addition to targeting enemy airfields, movement of enemy ground forces, especially their strike corps and reserves would have to be thwarted. In the mountainous region, India would have to interdict and close supply routes by air-action. The Indo-Russian FGFA, which is a derivative of the in-development single-seat Russian Sukhoi PAK-FA, will join the IAF by the end of this decade.

Air Forces today have to prepare for war involving Force-against-Force conventional war, sub-conventional low-intensity conflict and possible tactical nuclear exchange…

The Need for Strategy As Well As Tactics


When contemplating some of the challenges of Vietnam many years ago, then Secretary of State Henry Kissinger commented that in a guerrilla war, the guerrilla army wins if it does not lose, while the conventional army loses if it does not win. This is the sort of situation we find ourselves in fighting against al Qaeda’s core in the Afghanistan-Pakistan theater. It’s a very asymmetric “war,” and while we keep decimating their senior leadership, scoring small (but, important) tactical victories, the conflict just keeps on going and going, with no end in sight.

We are scoring tactical victories and “winning” every military engagement we have, but we are unfortunately losing the greater war as the al Qaeda ideology is flourishing. ISIS and other similarly themed offshoots continue to prosper, particularly in the growing list of failed and failing states in the Middle East and Africa. Plus, we are never going to be able to get to the point where we can have a decisive win, proclaim victory, take territory, and call it quits on the war on terrorism. This is going to go on forever. 

*** When Joint is Not Enough, Is Multi-Domain the Answer?

Albert Palazzo

Joint has been the orthodoxy for military operations since the Second World War. It has proven an effective means to coordinate the assets of different services operating under a single commander. Yet, despite its centrality to the contemporary way of war, the days of joint operations are numbered. Technological advances now occurring will mandate the crafting of a new principle around which to organise for and conduct war. This is taking shape under the idea of multi-domain operations.

Transformative weapons and systems are behind the need for commanders to change the way they think about and prepare for war. These technologies include long-range precision strike platforms, swarming and intelligent robots, advanced sensors, offensive cyber, electro-magnetic manoeuvre systems and weaponised social media. In combination, they are likely to have two significant and far-reaching effects on how war is conducted. First, the reach of these weapons and systems will eliminate the already porous boundaries between the domains through their ability to compress both time and space. Second the expansion of the number of domains of war from the traditional three of land, sea and air to six, with the inclusion of space, cyber and social media, will require greater command integration in what promises to be a more chaotic environment.