3 May 2024

India’s increased defence and security engagement with Southeast Asia

Viraj Solanki

On 19 April, India delivered BrahMos missiles to the Philippines – the first batch of a US$375 million deal with Manila that will see New Delhi provide three batteries of the cruise missile to the Philippine Marine Corps. The agreement constitutes India’s most valuable defence-export deal to date. It is further indication that following the India–China border clashes of June 2020, New Delhi is seeking to engage more closely with China’s neighbours on regional defence and security issues to counter the latter’s influence – where previously it was more hesitant to do so for fear of antagonising Beijing.

India’s greater willingness to engage Southeast Asian states is in part the result of growing India–China competition. The border clashes in 2020 widened the trust deficit between New Delhi and Beijing and added to the geopolitical polarisation of South and Southeast Asia. India has become increasingly concerned that a China-dominated Southeast Asia could pose a greater challenge for India than previously anticipated. As a result, New Delhi is wary of Beijing’s growing regional presence and influence, including its activities in the South China Sea and the potential impact of those activities on India’s freedom of navigation. As a result, India has become less willing to cater to China’s sensitivities with respect to engaging its neighbours.

India and Pakistan’s New Shadow Rivalry

Krzysztof Iwanek

Over the past few years, Pakistan has attempted to strengthen its ties with other non-Arabic Muslim-majority nations, such as Azerbaijan and Turkey. This element of Islamabad’s foreign policy is interestingly being met with a response from New Delhi: When Pakistan is more active in building relations with a certain Muslim-majority country, India engages more with that country’s rival. The cases in question here are two pairs of nations: Turkey-Greece and Azerbaijan-Armenia.

Turkey-Pakistan cooperation has significantly deepened in recent years. In 2016, the countries signed a deal according to which the Turks would modernize Pakistani submarines, and in 2018 they settled another deal, under which Turkey would manufacture four corvettes for Pakistan. The latter program commenced in 2019 and the first vessel was delivered to in September 2023. It is hard to imagine Pakistan using its ships against the navy of any other nation but India, and thus Ankara’s moves must have been read negatively in New Delhi.

Indian American Diaspora and Politics in India and the US

Akhilesh Pillalamarri

With the 2024 national elections in India underway, people of Indian origin — often termed non-resident Indians — living outside India are influencing, spreading the word, and commenting on Indian politics.

Nowhere are Indian diasporic politics more important than in the United States, home to the single largest Indian population outside of India.

There are nearly 5 million Americans of Indian descent, most of whom are first-generation and second-generation Indian immigrants. Many occupy positions of prominence, including sitting Vice President Kamala Harris, whose mother was from India, as well as the current CEOs of Google and Microsoft. There are also many prominent diasporic Indians in major American newspapers and think tanks, who may be able to give voice to issues for a global audience in a way that the domestic Indian media cannot.

Millions of Afghans Made Pakistan Home to Escape War. Now Many are Hiding to Escape Deportation.

Riazat Butt and Adil Jawad

Born and raised in Pakistan to parents who fled neighboring Afghanistan half a century ago, an 18-year-old found himself at the mercy of police in Karachi who took his cash, phone, and motorbike, and sent him to a deportation center.

Scared and bewildered, he spent three days there before he was sent back to Afghanistan, a place he has never been to, with nothing but clothes on his back.

The youth is one of at least 1.7 million Afghans who made Pakistan their home as their country sank deeper into decades of war. But they’ve been living there without legal permission, and are now the target of a harsh crackdown on migrants who Pakistan says must leave.

Some 600,000 Afghans have returned home since last October, when the crackdown began, meaning at least a million remain in Pakistan in hiding. They’ve retreated from public view, abandoning their jobs and rarely leaving their neighborhoods out of fear they could be next for deportation.

Islamic State Khorasan’s Westward Network Expansion Into Iran, Turkey, and Europe

Peter Smith , Levent Kemal, and Lucas Webber

The Islamic State attack on the Crocus City Hall music venue on the outskirts of Moscow, which killed at least 140 people and injured over 500 more, has prompted significant alarm among Western intelligence and security services about similar operations occurring in Europe and North America in the coming months. This concern is well-founded, given the aggressive campaign by the organization, its Afghanistan-Pakistan-based Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISKP), and pro-IS propaganda outlets threatening attacks and urging supporters to carry out acts of violence against the West – with a particular emphasis on sporting events.

In addition to ISKP’s lead role in the Crocus City Hall attack, the branch conducted a double suicide bombing in Kerman, Iran, on January 3 causing almost 400 casualties, and shot up a church in Istanbul, Turkey, on January 28.

Myanmar’s Revolution Has Entered a New, More Complicated Phase

Tommy Walker

Myanmar’s revolutionary war has taken a significant new turn as the fight for a key town on the Thai border vital for trade and morale continues.

Opposition forces, comprised of Myanmar’s shadow government and ethnic armed groups, have allied together in the past year in efforts to defeat military rule.

The conflict since the military coup over three years ago has now entered a new phase, analysts say, following a series of recent junta defeats.

When Myanmar’s military leader Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing and his forces removed the country’s democratically elected government in February 2021, it’s likely they weren’t expecting the level of resistance that has developed since. Myanmar has seen its share of political uprisings, most notably in 1988 and 2007, but up until now those revolutions were always quashed with severe and violent force.

Why China Is So Bad at Disinformation


The headlines sounded dire: “China Will Use AI to Disrupt Elections in the US, South Korea and India, Microsoft Warns.” Another claimed, “China Is Using AI to Sow Disinformation and Stoke Discord Across Asia and the US.”

They were based on a report published earlier this month by Microsoft’s Threat Analysis Center which outlined how a Chinese disinformation campaign was now utilizing artificial technology to inflame divisions and disrupt elections in the US and around the world. The campaign, which has already targeted Taiwan’s elections, uses AI-generated audio and memes designed to grab user attention and boost engagement.

But what these headlines and Microsoft itself failed to adequately convey is that the Chinese-government-linked disinformation campaign, known as Spamouflage Dragon or Dragonbridge, has so far been virtually ineffective.

China's Military Ships Watch US and Allied Navies

Micah McCartney

Chinese warships have been keeping tabs on naval vessels as they take part in the largest U.S.-Philippine military exercise to date, within the Southeast Asian country's internationally recognized exclusive economic zone.

Chinese destroyer the Shenzhen and a Dongdiao surveillance vessel were tracked sailing four to five miles away from participating U.S., French, and Philippine ships about 38 miles off the coast of Palawan province, Captain Ariel Joseph Coloma, spokesperson for the Philippine military's Western Command, told local media.

This year's Balikatan exercise, Tagalog for "shoulder to shoulder," began last week and involves land, air and sea assets. It is the largest and most complex version to date, with some 17,000 military participants, including personnel from Australia and, for the first time, France.


Joshua A. Schwartz

Iran’s attack against Israel on April 14 was historic—it marked the first time that Iran has directly struck Israeli territory from its own soil despite decades of tensions and shadow conflict. Iran utilized around 170 drones in the operation, making it one of the largest drone attacks in history—possibly the largest. As such, the attack epitomizes the increasing reliance on remote, uninhabited systems in modern warfare.

Aerial drones and other types of uninhabited vehicles are undoubtedly key to the future of conflict, but Iran’s attack demonstrates that the current generation of these systems have crucial weaknesses that limit their effectiveness on the battlefield against sophisticated adversaries. In particular, drones are highly susceptible to air defense and thus often do not reach their intended targets. However, Iran’s large-scale use of drones against Israel also illustrates how the military deficiencies of these systems can be leveraged to achieve two higher-order, strategic political goals—limiting escalation and maintaining a strong reputation for resolve.

Foreign Policy Starts in Your Own Neighborhood

Joseph A. Ledford

As Secretary of State George Shultz observed, “foreign policy starts in your own neighborhood.” For Shultz, and for the president whom he served, the United States could not successfully confront the Soviet Union without strengthening relationships, shoring up alliances, and addressing problems in the Western Hemisphere. Unfortunately, in recent years, the United States has not paid sufficient attention to its backyard, forgetting this key lesson of statecraft. The oversight is puzzling, given that the United States seeks to win a great-power competition with China. In an era of uncertainty, American policymakers should abide by Shultz’s diplomatic maxim.

Ronald Reagan faced a world in crisis upon walking into the Oval Office. Around the globe, interstate conflicts, civil wars, terrorism, and nuclear weapons were the crises du jour. The Cold War was bound for escalation. A resurgent Soviet Union built up a powerful military, bulldozed into Afghanistan, propelled revolutionary movements in the developing world, and resealed the Iron Curtain. In the Western Hemisphere, where the struggle for democracy persisted, revolution and counterrevolution plunged the region into a maelstrom of instability.


LTC Amos C. 


Writing about the principles of war in 1949, American military strategist Bernard Brodie posited, “The rules fathered by Jomini and Clausewitz may still be fundamental, but they will not tell one how to prepare for or fight a war.”1 Brodie’s comments in the wake of World War II meant to account for the vast amount of change experienced by all sides during that conflict. At the time, Brodie attributed the longevity of the principles of war, which had changed little since J.F.C. Fuller formalized them in the 1920s and 1930s, to three factors. First, the principles provided military practitioners “exceptional convenience,” and second, in their current form, they lent themselves well to “indoctrination.”2 Third, because of their convenience and ease for indoctrination, the existing principles of war remain ideally suited for professional military education, which is short and thus rewards lightweight material that can be learned quickly with simple mnemonics, acronyms and other heuristics.3 Brodie basically argues that the principles of war have not changed because it is simply easier to keep them as they are than it is to develop new principles more reflective of modern technology and methodologies of warfighting. Put another way, intellectual laziness often results in institutions shoehorning new technologies and seemingly novel techniques into extant language, taxonomies and doctrines.

In recent years, a few forward-thinking thought leaders have bravely pushed for reform in military thinking despite institutional recalcitrance quite similar to that which Brodie highlighted some 70 years ago. This advocacy is not limited to principles of war or warfare but also encourages new theories, methodologies and terminology that attempt to keep pace with or even set the pace for advances or general evolutions in military and dual-use technology. The emergence of formations like the Multi-Domain Task Force (MDTF) and the theater fires command and new weapon systems therein, for instance, require a rebalance of how and why the Army organizes the battlefield the way it does. This is nothing new. In 1925 J.F.C. Fuller wrote, “Changes of weapons must be accompanied by a change in tactical ideas.”4

Army University PressJournal of Military Learning, April 2024

Teaching Creative Problem-Solving: Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures

Fast-Tracking Student Success: Curriculum Adaptations for a Compressed Master’s Thesis Program

Air Assault! Applying Learning Science to Army Skill and Knowledge Acquisition

Army Cyber Institute (ACI)Cyber Defense Review, Spring 2024, v. 9, no. 1

Operational Perspectives from the Field – ARCYBER in the Cyberspace Domain

Mission Thread Analysis: Establishing a Common Framework in a Multi-discipline Domain to Enhance Defensive Cyberspace Operations

Beyond USCYBERCOM: The Need to Establish a Dedicated U.S. Cyber Military Force

2023 Executive Order on Trustworthy AI Misses Issues of Autonomy and AI Multi-Threat Challenges

Violent Limitation: Cyber Effects Reveal Gaps in Clausewitzian Theory

Quantum Leap: Improving Cybersecurity for the Next Era of Computing by Focusing on Users

How the Collapse of the Soviet Union Made Russia a Great Cyber Power

Communities, Agency, and Resilience: A Perspective Addressing Tragedy of the Cyber Commons

What Is in the Ukraine Aid Package, and What Does it Mean for the Future of the War

Mark F. Cancian and Chris H. Park

After months of intense congressional debate, Congress passed and the president signed into law a $61 billion aid package for Ukraine. The legislation gives the president nearly everything he wanted, which is surprising given the drama in the Republican House caucus. The new legislation brings the total U.S. commitment to $175 billion since the beginning of the invasion. It will produce an immediate surge in deliveries of military equipment, which had fallen to about 10 percent of what they had been last year. Because of the delay, another funding package will not be needed until January. That pushes it past the presidential campaign. Despite all this good news, a cloud hangs on the horizon: How does Ukraine plan on winning this war?

Q1: What is included in the package?

A1: The $61 billion of the Ukraine Security Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2024 falls into six categories.

Military equipment for Ukraine ($25.7 billion) comprises the largest part of the funding and does three things. First, it replaces equipment that has been or will be sent to Ukraine through presidential drawdown authority (PDA) ($13.4 billion). This authority allows the president to take weapons and munitions from U.S. stockpiles and send them to Ukraine. Although there is no statutory requirement to replace the equipment, Congress has provided funding to do so. If it had not, the resulting shortfalls would have badly hurt U.S. readiness.

Why Israel Should Declare a Unilateral Cease-Fire in Gaza

Dennis Ross and David Makovsky

Until last month, the war between Iran and Israel was largely fought in the shadows. The Iranians decided to take it out of the shadows, openly attacking Israeli territory directly, from Iranian soil, for the first time in the Islamic Republic’s history. Some observers have argued that Iran’s April 13 drone and missile assault on Israel was a symbolic gesture. Yet given the quantity of drones and missiles fired at Israel and their payloads, Iran clearly meant to inflict serious damage.

Israel’s defenses were nearly flawless, but it did not repel Iran’s attack entirely on its own. Just as Iran’s assault was unprecedented, so was the direct military intervention of the United States and a number of its allies, including some Arab states. U.S. Central Command, with the participation of the United Kingdom and Jordan, intercepted at least a third of the drones and cruise missiles that Iran fired at Israel; Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates also shared intelligence that helped Israel defend itself. Their readiness to play this role was remarkable, given how unpopular Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza is among Arab publics.

There is no solution to the Gaza War Israel is stoking a cycle of violenc

Rajan Menon

In assessing Israel’s post-October 7 military campaign in Gaza, it helps to recall Clausewitz’s dictum that war, though horrific, isn’t ultimately about killing and destruction for the sake of it but a means for states to achieve their political goals. Seen in this light, Israel’s war has already failed. Never has the Jewish state been so isolated internationally. Never has this nation, founded following the Holocaust, had to face formal allegations of genocide at the International Court of Justice.

Worse, Israel’s standing in the United States, its most stalwart supporter, has suffered, its popular support fallen and falling. More broadly, the war has led to an unprecedented erosion in support for Israel above all among Democrats and young people, including American Jews. For the first time, an American president seeking re-election worries that his support for Israel, typically an asset in any political campaign in the United States, could contribute to his defeat. His campaign rallies have been interrupted by hecklers yelling “Genocide Joe” and berating him for abetting war crimes. According to recent survey, nearly a third of American adults believe the Gaza war amounts to genocide. And now, American university campuses are roiled by anti-war protests, which some Jewish students have joined.

How Washington Should Manage Rising Middle Powers

Christopher S. Chivvis and Beatrix Geaghan-Breiner

Across the globe, a diverse group of nations that view world politics differently from the United States are rising and flexing their diplomatic muscle in ways that are complicating American statecraft. From Africa to Latin America, to the Middle East and Asia, these emerging powers refuse to fit into traditional U.S. thinking about the world order. The successful pursuit of American interests in the mid-21st century calls for a strategy that attracts them toward the United States and its ideals but without expecting them to line up in lockstep with Washington.

Where Global Governance Went Wrong—and How to Fix It

Joseph E. Stiglitz

Global governance, never really settled, has recently been having an especially hard time. Everyone believes in a rules-based system, but everyone wants to make the rules and dislikes it when the rules work against them, saying that they infringe on their sovereignty and their freedom. There are deep asymmetries, with the powerful countries not only making the rules but also breaking them almost at will, which raises the question: Do we even have a rules-based system, or is it just a facade? Of course, in such circumstances, those who break the rules say they only do so because others are, too.

The current moment is a good illustration. It is the product of longstanding beliefs and power relations. Under this system, industrial subsidies were a no-no, forbidden (so it was thought) not just by World Trade Organization rules, but also by the dictates of what was considered sound economics. “Sound economics” was that set of doctrines known as neoliberal economics, which promised growth and prosperity through, mostly, supposedly freeing the economy by allowing so-called free enterprise to flourish. The “liberal” in neoliberalism stood for freedom and “neo” for new, suggesting that it was a different and updated version of 19th-century liberalism.

What They Did to Our Women

Azadeh Moaveni

On 4 March,​ the UN’s special representative on sexual violence in conflict, Pramila Patten, held a press conference to brief reporters on the attacks of 7 October. A team from her office had spent two weeks in Israel and the West Bank, at the invitation of the government, examining what had happened that day, but Patten was expected to make, at most, a short press statement. Her office didn’t have a mandate to investigate sexual crimes on the ground and had never undertaken such a mission before. I was told by multiple sources at the UN that her trip was a matter of fierce controversy within the organisation. Many feared it would establish little and that in the absence of a firmly evidenced narrative, her report might appear to offer the UN’s imprimatur to the error-riddled stories circulating in the press. The Israeli government wanted to prove that the sexual violence on 7 October had been systematic and widespread not simply in order to establish a record of Hamas’s crimes, but to help it justify the continuation of the war, which by the time of Patten’s press conference had claimed more than 30,000 Palestinian lives, and destroyed much of the Gaza Strip, as well as displacing almost its entire population. Hamas, for its part, denied that its fighters had been guilty of rape; it claimed that they were disciplined, committed to Islamic values and had been ordered to target military sites and ‘arrest’ soldiers.

Instead of the expected short press statement, Patten issued a 22-page report. She devoted the first ten minutes of the press conference to establishing the limited scope of her mission. Her team, she said, had ‘gathered information’, ‘not evidence’. They had looked for verifiable facts, which they did not assess according to legal standards. Because her team had no investigative mandate and couldn’t make legal assessments or analyse military behaviour, they couldn’t take a view on the two questions to which many were seeking answers: the scale of sexual violence committed on 7 October and the identity of the perpetrators.

Ukraine’s “Batman” Sub Purported To Turn 180 Degrees Underwater at Full Speed

Amidst the devastation of the ongoing war in Ukraine, a glimmer of innovation emerges from an unlikely source: a team of Ukrainian engineers working in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)… and it looks like something straight out of a Batman movie.

Their brainchild, a revolutionary submarine dubbed Kronos, has sent ripples through the world of naval warfare, raising questions about the future of underwater combat and potentially tipping the scales in the Black Sea.

Kronos Submarine: A Design Unlike Any Other

Highland Systems, the UAE-based company behind Kronos, boasts a design unlike any traditional submarine.

The most headline-grabbing feature is its purported ability to execute a full 180-degree turn at maximum speed.

Ukrainian Abrams Tanks Pulled Back: US, Ukraine Reassess Tactics in Drone-Heavy Battlefield

The deployment of US-supplied M1A1 Abrams tanks in Ukraine has hit a significant snag.

Ukrainian forces have withdrawn the powerful tanks from the frontlines due to the growing threat posed by Russian drone warfare, according to US military officials.

This development underscores the dramatic impact of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) on modern battlefields, forcing a reassessment of tactics and raising questions about the future role of traditional heavy armor.

The Challenge of Drones

The Pentagon has acknowledged the vulnerability of the Abrams tanks in a battlefield saturated with Russian surveillance and attack drones.

These UAVs can easily detect the tanks’ thermal signatures and relay their positions, making them prime targets for Russian artillery or anti-tank missiles.

Why Israel Should Declare a Unilateral Cease-Fire in Gaza

Dennis Ross and David Makovsky

Until last month, the war between Iran and Israel was largely fought in the shadows. The Iranians decided to take it out of the shadows, openly attacking Israeli territory directly, from Iranian soil, for the first time in the Islamic Republic’s history. Some observers have argued that Iran’s April 13 drone and missile assault on Israel was a symbolic gesture. Yet given the quantity of drones and missiles fired at Israel and their payloads, Iran clearly meant to inflict serious damage.

Israel’s defenses were nearly flawless, but it did not repel Iran’s attack entirely on its own. Just as Iran’s assault was unprecedented, so was the direct military intervention of the United States and a number of its allies, including some Arab states. U.S. Central Command, with the participation of the United Kingdom and Jordan, intercepted at least a third of the drones and cruise missiles that Iran fired at Israel; Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates also shared intelligence that helped Israel defend itself. Their readiness to play this role was remarkable, given how unpopular Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza is among Arab publics.

Ukraine Situation Report: Frontline Defenses Deteriorating Under Russian Pressure


As his military waits for the delivery of desperately needed military aid, the conditions on the front lines continue to “worsen,” Ukraine’s top military commander said in a blunt assessment.

Severe ammunition shortages are giving Russians the upper hand, Col-Gen. Oleksandr Syrskyi, commander of Ukraine’s Armed Forces, said Sunday on social media. That’s a deficit the U.S. tried to address last week with a $1 billion aid package that included artillery rounds, munitions for U.S. donated M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS and air defense systems. It's part of a $61 billion aid package for Ukraine signed into law last week by President Joe Biden.

“The enemy is trying to take advantage of its advantage in air, missiles and the amount of artillery ammunition,” Syrskyi said.

The Dangerous Rise of GPS Attacks

Source Link

The disruption to GPS services started getting worse on Christmas Day. Planes and ships moving around southern Sweden and Poland lost connectivity as their radio signals were interfered with. Since then, the region around the Baltic Sea—including neighboring Germany, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania—has faced persistent attacks against GPS systems.

Tens of thousands of planes flying in the region have reported problems with their navigation systems in recent months amid widespread jamming attacks, which can make GPS inoperable. As the attacks have grown, Russia has increasingly been blamed, with open source researchers tracking the source to Russian regions such as Kaliningrad. In one instance, signals were disrupted for 47 hours continuously. On Monday, marking one of the most serious incidents yet, airline Finnair canceled its flights to Tartu, Estonia, for a month, after GPS interference forced two of its planes to abort landings at the airport and turn around.

GitHub releases an AI-powered tool aiming for a 'radically new way of building software'

Radhika Rajkumar

Over the past two years, generative AI has helped accelerate what programmers can do. Now, GitHub is giving them even more tools.

On Monday, the company launched a technical preview of GitHub Copilot Workspace, an AI-powered developer environment. The release builds on GitHub's existing productivity tools, including GitHub Copilot, launched in 2022, and Copilot Chat, which lets programmers use natural language to test and debug their code.

"Within Copilot Workspace, developers can now brainstorm, plan, build, test, and run code in natural language," the announcement explains. "This new task-centric experience leverages different Copilot-powered agents from start to finish, while giving developers full control over every step of the process."