Kalam asks security brass to prepare for nuclear, cyber wars

Cautioning about nuclear arsenal of some of India`s neighbours, former President APJ Abdul Kalam on Wednesday asked the security leadership to develop capabilities, including strategic missiles and military satellites, by 2020.

Updated: Oct 06, 2010, 23:17 PM IST

New Delhi: Cautioning about nuclear arsenal
of some of India`s neighbours and the cyber threats posed by
their hackers, former President A P J Abdul Kalam on Wednesday asked
the security leadership to develop capabilities, including
strategic missiles and military satellites, by 2020.

Kalam, who is hailed as the nation`s missile man, also
told them to prepare a military leadership firmly rooted in
integrity to keep out corruption from the defence forces and
maintained that warfare was not just about fighting wars, but
also enabling peace.
"All around our nation, there are nations which possess
nuclear arsenal...Computers with intelligent software will
fight in the place of many strategic systems. They will be
more powerful -- which will travel at the speed of light -- to
destroy the economic capability of countries exceeding the
power of nuclear weapons," Kalam said, delivering the 15th
Field Marshal K M Carriappa memorial lecture here.

"India has to focus and strengthen its capacity on four
fronts. Hence we should visualise the following five scenarios
in place before the year 2020. They are: Space-based
surveillance and reconnaissance, intelligence, defence,
weapons and strategic alliances," he said at the event
organised by the Army.

However, the former President did not take the name of
any nation while highlighting the challenges posed by them to
India`s security in the cyber and nuclear domain.

He emphasised the need for "multiple centres with
anti-ballistic missile systems, aircraft surveillance with
deep penetration strike capabilities...Inter-continental
ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads beyond 5,000-km
range, and intermediate range ballistic missiles with 5,000-km
range, whose probability was in sight now."

Kalam, who was earlier the principal scientific advisor
to the Central government, said India should pursue "strategic
alliances" with neighbours and other critical locations,
establish mutually beneficial economic cooperation and "imbibe
confidence among neighbours that aligning with democratic
India is (of) the paramount importance for their internal
peace and prosperity."

Warning that the transformational technologies that could
enhance quality of life could become "dangerous tools" in the
wrong hands, he said this phenomenon was true not only for
technologies, but in social networking too.

"Past animosities, real or perceived enmities, and large
inequities in development within nations and globe are waiting
to use such networking and technologies for vicious purposes,"
he said.

"Social evil of corruption forms the other dimension and
it cannot be allowed to intrude into the defence systems," he
Noting that the challenge was to equip the Indian
security establishment to combat the fast-paced technology-
driven warfare, Kalam said the whole war environment would be
network centric and could be electronically controlled,
combined with space,deep sea and ballistic missile encounters.

"The winner of future warfare will be the armed force
which can visualise the strength of the enemy, not based on
previous wars but based on the current capabilities, and
technological advancements in the global scenario," he said.

"Our officers serving in the armed forces will have to
get trained in virtual reality based simulated war fronts of
all the terrains and all extreme conditions of warfare.

"Walk through during a space, chemical, nuclear and
electronic encounters or attacks need to be visualised and
proper counter measures, with decision making process, need to
be propounded," he added.

Pointing out that future soldiers would be knowledge
workers, Kalam said, "the future battlefield would require a
synergised team work with joint services operation and use of
land, aerospace and ocean as important war theatres."

Advocating the need for leveraging India`s cyber
knowledge base, the former President said in the
electronically linked world, nations were increasingly linked
economically and during war, destruction would be more severe
and fatal if the economy collapsed.

"Cyber technology is the tool for such type of war. The
future war that is powered by cyber war can create destruction
effortlessly at the speed of light. The ICBMs and nuclear
weapons will be becoming insignificant in the cyber warfare
environment," he added.
He called for training of the country`s work force, be it
armed forces personnel, lawyers, police, judges, and others,
on the possibilities of technology-centric crimes and war,
warning that "in the absence of such awareness programme, a
country can be defeated even without a missile or aircraft
attack just through intelligent cyber war."

Without directly mentioning the Mumbai terror attacks of
November 2008, Kalam said the nation had witnessed how
terrorist operations were commanded and controlled using
mobile communication devices in the midst of people, armed
forces and paramilitary forces.

"In modern day, fight against terrorism (includes)
blocking these communication devices using local high powered
jammers. In such missions, one of the important strategic
needs is fast and secure encryption and decryption. It is an
essential tool towards preventing terrorists from achieving
coordinated attacks," he added.