Missile Proliferation and the Strategic Balance in South Asia
CRS Report for Congress
Missile Proliferation and the Strategic Balance
in South Asia
Analys t in National De fense
Fo reign Affairs, De fense, and Trade Division
Analys t in Asian Affairs
Fo reign Affairs, De fense, and Trade Division
Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress
Missile Proliferation and the S trategic B alance
This report analyzes t he policy implications of missile proliferation i n S outh
Asia, p roviding information o n India’s and Pakistan’s missile programs and t heir role
in regi onal s ecurity. The report also p rovi d e s b a c k ground on the India-Pakistan
conflict and the U.S. role, and reviews the region’s s trat egic security dynamics. The
report concludes with a review o f k ey issues and options for U.S. policy.
The United S tates h as long been concer ned about the p roliferation o f nuclear
weapons and t heir delivery s ys tems in S outh Asia. This concern b ecame acute after
May 1998, when both India and Pakistan tested nuclear ex plosive d evices. S ince that
time, both countries have continued t esting nucl ear-capable ballistic missiles, and
both have established command and control authorities t o oversee t h ei r n uclear
arsenals. India and Pakistan have fought three wars s ince 1947 and h ave s ignificant
unsett l ed t erritorial disputes. Although t he status of weaponiz ation i s unclear, a
slow-speed a r m s race appears t o b e unde rway on the Asian Subcontinent, and t he
proliferation of missile capabilities i n S outh Asia has been identified as a potentially
major t hreat to regi onal s tability and t o key U.S. foreign policy goals.
A p ersi st ent aspect of U.S . engagem ent i n t h e regi o n h as been t h e d i ffi cul t y of
maintaining a balanced approach to war d two antagonistic countries while
simultaneously promoting p erceived U.S. interests. During t he 1990s, U.S. s ecurity
policy t oward S outh Asia focused on preven ting weapons proliferation, but the Bush
Administration s hifted to a m ore “pragmatic” approach emphasiz i ng “restraint” i n
this area. For perhaps the first period in history t he United S tates currently enjoys
simultaneously positive relations with both countries.
While relationships between the United S tates, India, and P akistan have t aken
on a positive hue, potential for regi onal i nstability persists. The strategi c capabilities
of India and Pakistan could p rovide a read y cat al ys t for t ransform i n g d i s p u t es or
terrorist incidents i nto potentially cataclysmic confrontations. Both countries also are
pursuing t he development o r acquisition of missile defense s ys tems. It i s unknown
at this early stage i f missile defenses will offer a degree of stability to the region or
if they will create an imb a l a n ce, thus prompting t he other country to build more
missiles t o compensat e for the disparity.
Key i ssues for C ongress addressed i n t hi s report are the ex t ent t o which missile
proliferation i n S outh Asia enhances or upset s regional s tability and t he role of U.S.
pol i cy i n promoting s uch s tability, as wel l as i n t ension reduction and
nonproliferation. Levels of U.S. foreign assistance to In d i a a n d P akistan, t he
establishment o f a i d restrictions, t he transfer of conventional weapons platforms
(possibly i ncluding missile defense s ys tems), the s etting of ex port control param et ers
and nonproliferation goals, and the m aint enance of policy and intelligence oversight
of U.S. relations with India and Pak i stan constitute additional i ssues of concern t o
Congress. This report will be updated as warranted by events.
Debate Over a R egional Nuclear W eapons and M issile Race ............7
Regi onal S trat egic Force C apabilities .................................10
Indian W eapons and Delivery S ys tems ............................10
Pakistani W eapons and Delivery S ys tems .........................11
Missile-Rel at ed Stability Fact ors .................................12
TheIndian Approach to MissileDefense...........................15
ThePakistani Approach to MissileDefense ........................17
KeyIssues andOptions forCongress .................................17
Technical Assistance ......................................18
Proliferation S ecurity In itiative (Counterproliferation) ............19
Pakistan-North KoreaRelations .............................20
TheBrahMos CruiseMissile ................................21
Vertical andNon-MissileProliferation ........................21
Regi onal S tability.............................................22
Appendix A.MissilePrograms ......................................25
Prithvi I ................................................26
Prithvi II ................................................27
Prithvi III ...............................................27
Agni I ..................................................27
Agni II .................................................27
Agni III .................................................27
Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles (SLBMs) ................28
Ghauri I ................................................31
Ghauri II ................................................32
Fo reign Involvement in Pakistan’s Missile Program ..............32
Table 1. Indian Ballistic Missiles ....................................26
Table 2. P akistani Ballistic Missiles ..................................30
Figure1. MapofSouthAsia ........................................34
Missile Proliferation and the
Strategic Balance in South Asia
This report analyzes t he policy implications of missile proliferation i n S outh
Asia, p roviding information o n India’s and Pakistan’s missile programs and their role
in regi onal s ecurity. The report p rovides background on the India-Pakistan conflict
and t he U.S. role, and reviews t he regi on’s s ecurity dynamics and strategi c force
capabilities, including each country’s ballistic missile capability to deliver weapons
of mass destruction (W M D). The report concl udes wi t h a revi ew o f k ey i ssues and
options for U.S. policy. 1
U.S. and Congressional I nterest
U.S. security i n t e r e sts i n S outh Asia concentrate o n weapons proliferation,
strategi es to reduce t ensions , a n t iterrorism, and regi onal s tability. This report
em phasi z es t he rol e of m i ssi l es i n S out h Asi an securi t y because of t h ei r pot ent i al u se
as delivery v ehicles for nuclear weapons. As s uch, the p roliferation o f missiles i n t he
regi on is considered to be a central variable in cal culations gauging regional s tability.
During the 1990s, t he U.S. security focus i n S outh Asia s ought to minimi z e
damage to the nonproliferation regime, p revent escalation o f a nuclear arms and
missile race, and p romote Indo-P akistani b ilateral d ialogu e, espe c i a l ly on the
sovereignty dispute over Kas hmir. In light of thes e goals, t he Clinton Administration
established fi v e “ b e n chmarks” for Indi a and Pakistan based o n t he contents of UN
Security Council Res. 1172, w h i c h condemned the t wo countries’ nuclear tests o f
May 1998. These were:
! si gn i n g and rat i fyi ng t h e C om prehen s i v e Nucl ear Test Ban T reat y
! halting all further production of fissile material and p articipating i n
Fi ssile Material Cutoff Treat y (FM CT) negotiations;
! limiting devel opment and deployment of WMD delivery vehicles;
1 For broader discussion, see CRS Issue Brief IB93097, India-U.S. Relations a n d CRS Is s u e
Brief IB94041, Pakistan-U.S. R e lations , by Alan K ronstadt. For security-specific
discussion, see CRS Report RL31644, U.S.-India Security Relations,byAmit Gupta; CRS
Report RL31624, Paki stan-U.S. Anti-T errorism Cooperation; CRS Report RL30623 ,
Nuclear Weapons a n d B a llistic Missile Proliferation i n I ndia and Pakistan,byAlan
K r onstadt; CRS Report RL31589, Nuclear Thre a t R e d u c tion M easures f or India and
Paki st an; a nd CRS Report RS21237, India and Pakistan Nu clear We a p ons Status ,by
2 For a revi ew of the CT BT a nd its current status, s ee CRS Issue Brief IB92099, Nuc l e a r
We apons: Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, by J onathan Medalia.
! i m p l e menting s trict ex port controls on WMD m at erials and
! est abl i s hi n g bi l at eral d i al o gu e b et ween New D el hi and Isl am abad.
Progress in each of these areas has b een limited, and t he Bush Administration
m akes n o reference t o t h e b e n c h m ark fram ework. 3 Neither India nor Pakistan has
sign e d t h e C T B T, and both appear to be continuing their p roduction o f weapons-
grade fissile material s.4 The s t a t u s o f weaponiz ation and deployment is unclear,
though t here are i ndications that this is occurring at a s low, but more or less steady
pace. 5 Earlier optimism i n t he area of ex port controls waned as f ears have gai ned
credence that these countri es, especially Pakistan, m i ght seek to ex port W MD
materials and/or technologies.6 Fi nal l y, w hi l e t h ere h as been no repeat of t h e i nt ense
1999 military clashes i n Kashmir — and a t en-month-long military standoff i n 2002
ended without large-sca l e f i g h t ing — bilateral t ensions remain sign ificant, and n o
substantive d ialogu e b etween New Delhi and Islamabad is underway.
Upon taking office, the Bush Administration s et out substantively t o build upon
an initial improvement in U.S. relations with New Del hi begun by P resident Clinton,
while also shifting U.S. nonproliferation policy from s eeking t o p revent South Asian
nucleariz ation t o encouraging India and Pakistan to be “more responsible nuclear
3 Many analys ts believe that the Bush Administration i s l ess i nteres t e d t han previ ous
admi nistrations in normative-legal efforts at nonproliferation a n d is more concerned with
pursing active counter proliferation ( E j az Haider, “Nonproliferation, Ir an and Pakistan,”
Friday Times (Lahore), September 19, 2003).
4 India has consistently rej ected both t he CT BT and t he Nuclear Nonproliferation T reaty as
discrimi natory, calling i nstead for a gl obal nuclear disarmament r egime. While both India
and Pakistan maintain self-imposed moratoria on nuclear testin g, t h e y r efuse to sign the
CT BT ——a position arguably made more t enable by U.S. Senate’s rej ection of t he treaty
5 Central Intelligence Agency, “Unclassified Report t o Congress on the Acquis ition of
T echnology Relating t o Weapons of Mass De stru c t i o n a nd Adva nced Conventional
Munitions, 1 J anuary-30 J une, 2002,” April 2003, available a t
[http://www.odci.gov/ cia/repor ts/721_reports/j an_j un2002.html ].
6 Paki stan’s possible t ransfers of uranium enr ichment materials and t echnologies t o North
K orea during t he 1990s and perhaps as recently as J uly 2002 have sparke d new concerns in
U.S. policy-ma ki ng circles ( see CRS Report RL31900, We apons of Mass Destruction:
Trade Between North Korea and Pakistan , by Sharon Squassoni). In addition t o possible
proliferation activities i nvolvi ng North K or ea, some reports indicate t hat Iran’s nuclear
program has benefitted from Pakistani assi stance. Moreover, there exist fears a bout t he
physical safety and s ecurity of Paki stan’s nuclear weapons themselves, a long with concerns
that Paki stani nuclear scientists have been in contact with Is lami c militant gr oups, possibly
including Al Qaeda. See “Testimony of J on Wolfsthal Before the Subcommittee on Europe
and t he Subcommittee on International T errorism, Nonproliferation, and Human Ri ghts of
the House International Relations Committ ee,” M ay 14, 2003; “T he Evil Behind the Axis?,”
LosAngelesTimes, J anuary 5, 2003; “Pakistan T ightens Security at Nuclear Facilities,”
Agence France-P r e s s e , J anuary 22, 2003; T i m Burge r a nd T i m M cGirk, “Al Qaeda’s
Nuclear Contact?,” Ti me , M ay 19, 2003.
powers.”7 S o m e anal ys t s have argu ed t h at , b y m ovi n g t h e U . S . focus away from
international nonproliferation t reaties s uch as t he CTBT and withdrawing from t he
Anti-Ballistic Missile Treat y, the Bu sh Administration’s de-em phasis of “vertical
proliferation”8 issues has contributed to legitimizing S outh Asia’s strat egic arsenals.9
In the face of congressional questioning a bout seeming “contradicti ons” i n U.S.
pol i cy, Assi st ant S ecret ary o f S t at e for S out h Asi a C hri s t i n a R occa st at ed i n March
2003 that the United S tates i s t aking a “pra gm atic approach” t hat s eeks t o h ave India
and P akis t a n “ex erci se restraint” with regard to the proliferation of s trat egic
The S eptember 2001 terrorist attacks o n t he United S tates and ensuing U.S.-led
antiterrorism efforts t ransformed U.S. relations with India and, es peci ally Pakistan,
whi ch agai n becam e a “front -l i n e” al l y and b enefi ci ary of si gn i fi cant U .S . f o r ei gn
assistance ( u p f r o m $3.5 million i n FY2001 to more than $1 billion i n FY2002).
India’s s wift offer o f full s upport for U.S. antiterrorism efforts was widely viewed as
reflective o f m uch improved U.S.-India rel ations. In 2003, and for perhaps t he first
period in history, the United S tates simultaneously enjoys positive rel ations with both
countries. 11 This ci rcu m s t an ce m a y m ean that the ability of the United S tates t o
influence S o uth Asian security dynamics i s at an all-time high. At t he same time,
differences with P akistan (ov e r i s s ues o f t errorism, p roliferation, and
democratiz ation) and with India (over d efinitions of terrorism, U.S. poli c y i n t h e
Mi ddl e E ast , and hum an ri gh t s ) cont i nue t o cl oud forecast s of fut u re U.S .
engagement with South Asia’s t wo largest and nuclear-armed countries.
The k ey i ssues for C ongress addressed h ere are whet her m i ssi l e prol i ferat i o n i n
South Asia enhances or detract s from regional s tability and t he role of U.S. policy i n
promoting s uch s tability, as well as i n t en sion reduction and nonpro liferation. Levels
of U.S. foreign assistance to India and Pakistan, t he es tablishment of aid restrictions,
the t ransfer o f conventional weapons platfo rms (possibly i ncluding missile defense
systems), t he setting o f ex port control p aram eters and nonproliferation goals, and the
maintenance of policy and in t e l ligence oversight of U.S. relations with India and
7 Stephen P. Cohen, “South Asia,” i n Strategic Asia 2002-03: Asian Aftershocks ,Richard
Ellings and Aaron Friedberg, eds. ( Seattle: National Bureau of As ian Res e arch), 2002.
President Bush’s 2002 U.S. National Security St rategy asserts t hat “U.S. interests r equire
a s t r o n g r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h In d i a ” ( a va i l a b l e a t [ ht t p : / / www.s t a t e . go v/ r / pa / e i / w h / c 7889.htm]).
8 “Vertical proliferation” refers to the progr e ssive development of WMD within states, while
“onward proliferation” refers to the t ransfer of WMD or WMD t echnologies between states.
9 See, for e xample, C. Raj a M ohan, “India, the U.S. a nd Nonproliferation,” Hindu (Madras),
September 25, 2003; K haled Ahme d, “T he Cost of Opposing General Musharraf,” Friday
Ti mes (Lahore), J uly 18, 2003; Sumi t Ganguly, “ T he Start of a Beautiful Friendship?: T he
United States and India,” World Policy Journal , Spring 2003.
10 “Transcript: Hearing of t he Su b c ommittee on Asia and the Pacific of t he House
International Relations Committee, ” Federal News Service, March 20, 2003
11 In J uly 2003, Secretary of State Powell offered t hat “ we probably have t he best relations
we have had with India and Paki stan now than in many, many years” (“Interview With T he
Washington T imes Editorial Board,” Departme nt of State Press Release, J uly 22, 2003).
P a ki st an al l h ave a v i t al congressi onal facet . P endi ng and fut ure l egi s l at i o n coul d
influence l evel s of stability in South Asia.
Regional C onflict a nd the U .S. R ole
Understanding presen t-day missile proliferation i n S outh Asi a and relevant U.S.
policy options is aided b y a review of the h istorical setting. Three wars — in1947-
48, 1965, and 1971 — and a constant state o f military preparedness on both s ides of
thei r s hared border h av e m arked t he half-cen tury of bitter rival ry between India and
Pakistan. A bloody battle in the Kashmiri m ountains near K a r gi l in 1999 cost
thousands of lives and marked history’s first significant direct clash between the
forces of two nuclear-armed countri es. M ost recently, a 1 0 -month-long military
standoff i n 2002 involving up to one million Indian and P akistani soldiers was
viewed as t h e closest the t wo countries had b een to full-scale war since 1971, and
caused t he U.S. government to become “deeply concerned ... that a conventional war
... could escalate i nto a nuclear confrontation.”12
A persistent and oftentimes perplex ing aspect of U.S. engagement in the region
has been the difficulty of maintaining a more-or-les s bal anced approach toward two
antagonistic countries while simultaneous ly promoting p erceived U.S. i nteres t s in
South Asia. India has seven times the population and four times t he land area of
Pakistan. In 2002, the Indian GDP was m ore t han eight times t hat o f P akistan, and
the Indian military enjoys a 2:1 or 3 : 1 a d v antage i n numbers of soldiers and
conventional arms.13 Yet , despi t e Indi a’s cl earl y great er st at us i n t h ese concret e
terms, the United S tates h as for t he past half-century found itself m uch m ore closely
engaged with Pakistan, i n p articular during t he 1950s, when P akistan was part of the
U.S.-led alliance s ys tem t o contain t he S oviet Union; the 1980s, when P akistan was
a front-line ally in U.S.-supported efforts to d efeat the S oviet Army in Afgh anistan;
and t oday, when Pakistan is agai n a front-line ally, t h i s time in U.S.-led efforts t o
defeat Islamic militancy.
Col d War 14
India and Pakistan were established i n August 1947 from what h ad been British
India. Some 500,000 people d ied during t h e Partition, and b y October t he two
countries were figh tin g a war over t he di sputed Kashmir regi on. Even before the
onset of t h e U.S .-S ovi et C o l d W ar, t h ere ex i st ed a “st rat egi c d i v ergence” bet ween t h e
12 Statement of George T enet Before the Senate Armed Services Committee, “Worldwide
T hreat: Convergi ng Dangers i n a Post-9/11 W orld,” March 19, 2002.
13 CIA W orld Factbook, a va ilable a t
[http://www.odci.gov/ cia/publications/factbook/index.html ].
14 Much of the general historical information i n t hese sections is derived from S t e phen P.
Cohen, India: Emerging Power (Washington: Br ookings Institution Press), 2001; Dennis
K ux, India and the United States: Estranged Democracies (Washington: National Defense
University Press), 1992; and Dennis K ux, The United States and Pakis t an 1947-2000:
Di senchanted Allies (Washington: Woodrow W ilson Center Press), 2001.
United S tates and Indian nationalists that “set habits and patterns on both sides”
whi ch p ersi st ed for m any d ecades.15 Over the course of the C old W ar, U.S. i nterest
in South Asia w a s i n c o nsistent and almost wholly subordinated t o efforts at
c o n t aining Soviet and C hinese communi st ex pansion. A p erceived absence of
compelling geostrategi c o r economic stakes limited t he ex tent of U.S. involvement
in South Asian affairs.
During the 1950s, P akistan b ecame embedded i n U.S .-led t reaty o rganiz ations
t h at sought t o enci rcl e and cont ai n com m unist ex pansion. Two k ey results were the
institutionalization of close U.S.-Pakistan ties and the provision to Islamabad of l arge
assi st ance packages. 16 While this U.S.-Pakist a n s ecurity relationship devel oped,
Indi an l eaders concent rat ed on nat i on-bui l d i n g and fol l o wed a pol i cy o f what b ecam e
known as nonalignment. By the mid-1950s, W ashington’s d ifferences with New
Del h i gave ri s e t o w h at a t o p U .S . d i p l o m at charact eri z ed as “correct but rat h er
chilly”ex changes t hat would l ast for several d ecades.17
After a brief 1962 border war with China ex posed serious w e a k n e s s es in the
Indian Army, t he United S tates i nitiated military assistance programs for New Delhi
that totaled about $150 million by 1966. However, the second India-Pakistan war
over Kashmir in 1965 spurred t he United States t o end military assistance to both
countries. Given Pakistan’s 10 years o f c lose cooperation with the Unite d S tates,
some in Is lamabad fel t bet rayed by t hi s m ove. However, when E ast P akistan (now
Bangladesh) fell i nto t urmoil in 1971, leading t o t he forced partition o f P akistan after
its defeat in a t hird war with India, President Nix on elected to “ti lt” U.S. support
toward Pakistan and, in so doing, b rought U.S.-In d i a relations to a n adir. 18 India’s
“peaceful nuclear ex plosion” of 1974 made S outh Asian weapons proliferation a top-
tier U.S. concern for the remainder o f t he Cold W ar. The S oviet invasion of
Afgh anistan o f 1979 transformed U.S.-Pakistan relati ons virtually over n i ght, and
during t he 1980 s P akistan b ecame regarded as a front-line U.S . ally in the s truggl e
against S oviet ex pansion. 19
15 Stephen P. Cohen, “T he United States, India, and Pakistan: Retrospect and Prospect,” in
India and Paki s t an , Selig Harrison, Paul K r eisberg, and Dennis K ux, eds. (Washington:
Woodrow Wilson Center Press), 1999. One s enior observer offers that, “In contrast w i th
the r elatively stable, if estranged r elationship with India, American interaction with Paki stan
has been intense a n d extraordinarily volatile,” because of fluctuating and often divergent
interests ( Dennis K ux, The United States and Pakistan , p. xviii).
16 Is lamabad r eceived nearly $12 billion i n U.S. aid from 1947-1997, about one-quarter in
the f orm of military assistance. New Delhi received more t han $13 billion i n U.S. aid during
this period, but only 1% was military assistance (U.S. Agency for International Development
“Greenbook” at [ http://qesdb.cdie.org/ gbk/index.html ]).
17 Deputy Secretary [ of State] St robe Talbott, “U.S. Diplomacy in South Asia: A Progr ess
Report,” U.S. Department of State Dispatch, December 16, 1998.
18 The United States sailed t he Enterprise carrier task force i nto t he Bay of Benga l i n 1971
to deter an Indian attack on West Pakistan, an event t hat had lasting effect on New Delhi’s
19 T he military regi me of Paki stani Gen. Zia-ul Haq subsequently received s everal billion
dollars in U.S. economic and military aid, even as President Reaga n c o n t i n u ed t he
Fo llowing the S oviet Union’s withdrawal from Afghanistan and its subsequent
collapse i n 1991, U.S. policy t oward S outh Asia s ought to “break the z ero-sum mind-
set t hat [ had] plagued Indo-Pakistani rel ations since p artition and was reinforced by
t h e gl obal ri v al ri es of t h e p ast d ecades.”20 Proliferation-related res trictions on ai d t o
P aki st an const rai ned t hi s effort , however, and cont ri but ed t o a p ercei ved i m b al ance
in U.S. policy after thei r ( r e - ) i m p o s ition i n 1990. 21 For India, the end of the C old
W ar m eant an end t o t wo d ecades of cl ose Indi an-S ovi et rel at i ons and a m aj o r
reduction o f aid infusions from M osco w . A t about the s ame time, d isaffected
separatists in the Jammu and Kashmir state launched a full-blown rebellion there.
During the 1990s, Islamabad came under i nt ense cri ticism from both India and the
United S tates for its active role i n s upporting the insurgency, and later for its support
of the Afghani Taliban regime. The May 1998 nuclear tests t riggered s weeping U.S.
aid restrictions on both count r i es , a n d an October 1999 military coup in Pakistan
brought added U.S. s an c tions on that country. 22 Yet t he decade-l ong shi ft i n U.S .
ori ent at i o n t oward S out h A si a b ecam e especi al l y cl ear when President Clinton visited
the region i n M arch 2000, spending six d ays i n India, but only s ix hours i n P akistan.
The S eptember 2001 terrorist attacks o n t he United S tates s uddenly t ransformed
U.S. relat i o n s w ith Pakistan, which again b ecame a front-line U.S. ally, t his time
against radical Is lamic terrorists and thei r s upporters. India also j oined t he U.S.-led
antiterrorism coalition, and rem ai ning ai d res trictions on both India a nd Pakistan
were quickly lifted by C ongress an d P resi dent Bu sh. However, while the Bush
Administration has moved t o bolster U. S.-India relati o n s o n a b road front —
i n c l u d i ng regu lar and unprecedented j oint military ex ercises and potentially maj o r
arms sales t o New Delhi — the U.S.-Pakistan relationship h as contin ued t o b e
constrained b y U.S. concerns regard ing Islamabad’s possibl e role i n W MD
proliferation, terrorist infiltration i nto both Indian K a s h m i r and across t he Durand
Li ne separating P akistan and Afghanistan, and percei ved anti-democratic practices
by P resi d ent Gen. P ervez M usharraf. Despi t e t h ese concerns, Is l a m abad agai n
became a l eading recipient o f U.S . foreign assistance funds.
betterment of U.S.-India r elations begun by President Carter.
20 [Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia] Robin Raphel, “South Asia After the Cold
War: India a nd Paki stan,” U.S. Department of State Dispatch, September 25, 1995.
21 Sec. 620E(e) of t he Foreign Assistance Act ( the Pressler Amendment of 1985) requires
the President to determine t hat Pakistan does not possess a nuclear explosive device and that
any proposed U.S. assistance would r educ e t he risk of obtaining such a device. In 1990,
then-President Bush did not ma ke the f indi ng required t o make assistance available.
22 See CRS Report RS20995, India and Pakistan: U.S. Economic Sanctions, by Dianne
Bilateral S ecurity Dynamics
Debate Over a Regi onal Nucl ear Weapons and M i ssi l e Race
Central t o an analysis of t he meaning of missile proliferation i n S outh Asia are
two key questions: First, i s a strategi c arms race betw e e n India and Pakistan
underway? And, second, does p rogre s s i n t he development o f missile and nuclear
capabilities promote or degrade regional s tability? Indian and P akistani government
offi ci al s ex p ress a d esi re t o avoi d engagi n g i n a cost l y and pot ent i al l y di sast rous arm s
r a c e, while also asserting t hat n o s uch race is afoot.23 Yet a 2001 Defense
Depart m ent revi ew of prol i ferat i o n t hreat s i ndi cat ed t h at , “Indi an and P aki s t ani
strategi c p rograms continue to be driven by the p erception o f t he other’s effort,” and
that the t wo countries “are i n a period of accelerat e d n u clear weapons and missile
devel opm ent ” t h at m ay b e t erm ed a “sl o w-speed” arm s race. 24 In 2002, Director of
Central Intelligence Tenet t old t he Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that ,
Both India and Paki stan are worki ng on the doctrine a n d tactics f or more
advanced nuclear weapons, producing f iss i l e material, and increasing t heir
nuclear stockpiles. ... Both countries al so continue deve lopment of l ong-r ange
nuclear-capable ballistic mi ssiles, and plan t o f ield cruise mi ssiles with a l and-25
Apparent tit-for-tat ballistic missile tests i n April 1999 and again in March 2003
have been vi ewed as evi d ence t h at an act i on-react i o n d yn am i c i s i n d eed at work. 26
Many a n alys ts argu e t hat overt nuclear weaponiz ation b y either side — m ost
es p eci ally of their ballistic missiles — could be highly destabilizing, especially i f
si gn i fi cant nucl ear m i ssi l e forces are d epl o yed i n t he absence o f s ecure com m and and
cont rol s t ruct u res. If t h ese forces are p erceived as b eing vulnerable t o attack, one or
both s ides might adopt a l aunch-on-warning s tatus, making conflict escalation even
more difficult to govern.27
Ever s i n ce t he 1998 nuclear tests i n S outh Asia, it has appeared that India’s
strategi c deci sion-making is a key fact or in shaping regional s tability. According t o
the P entagon, “India’s devel opment of [ medium-range ballistic missiles (MRBMs)]
... i s m o t i v at ed by i t s desi re t o be recogn i z e d as a great power and s t rat egi c
23 “Musharraf Says No Arms Race On Subcontin e n t , ” Associated Press Newswire,
September 4, 2003; “India Not In Ar ms Race: PM,” Hindustan Times (Delhi), October 13,
24 U.S. Departme nt of Defense, Proliferation: Threat and Response , 2001.
25 St atement of G e o r ge T e net Before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence,
“Worldwide T hreats t o National Security,” February 6, 2002.
26 Michael Mecham, “India T est Fire s Agni Missile; Pakistan Responds With Ghauri,”
Aviation Week and Space Technology , April 19, 1999; Edward Luc e , “India a nd Paki stan
Launch T est M issiles,” Financial Times (London), M arch 27, 2003.
27 Neil J oeck, Maintaining Nuclear Stability in South Asia (New York: Oxford University
competitor with China.”28 China seem s c o n t en t with its ex isting det errent agai nst
India, and P akistan’s limited resources appear to constrai n its ability to in i tiate an
Indo-Pakistani a r m s r a c e. 29 Thus, a key v ariable i n t he future evolution o f S outh
Asian nuclear proliferation i s India’s s trat egic intention i n rel ation t o C hina. One of
the m ore d angerous s c e n a r i o s i s one in which India actively s eeks t o gain nuclear
parity with China by building a larger nuclear arsenal and long-range delivery force.
In the middle-term, t he deployment of Agni missiles cap a b l e of striking China’s
eastern population centers could s pur Beijing t o re-target more nuclear forces to the
south and likewise m ove Is lamabad t o s eek some form of parity in t h i s arena, thus
potentially set ting i n m otion a full-blown arms race on the Asian Subcontinent.30
Moreover, some observers suggest that U.S. sales of t heat er missile defense s ys tems
in Asia — or t he deployment of a n ational s ys tem covering U.S. territory — could
spur further ballistic missile proliferation i n S outh Asia (see bel ow). 31
Deter r e nce M odel s
Debate over t he proliferation o f s trategic arsenals generally is divided i nto t wo
cam ps: “optimists” and “pessimists.”32 Proliferation optimists operate under t he
logi c o f d eterrence, wherein t he possession of nuclear weapons by both s ides of an
adversarial i nterstate rel ationship can be ex pected to produce s tability. P ut simply,
mutual deterrence obtains when both s ides believe that th e costs of aggression or
escal at i o n are l i k el y t o out wei gh t he pot ent i al b enefi t s of such act i on. 33 Proliferation
pessimists , however, t ake t he view that the s pread of nuclear weapons capability is
inherently destabilizing and dangerous, and that nuclear dynamics i n t he developing
world are unlikely t o re-create t he Cold War p atter n . P olitical and t echnological
factors i n conflict-prone areas are s een to create conditions where nuclear weapons
will not produce s tability and t he introduction o f m o r e nuclear weapons will
sign ificantly increase t he likelihood that the s e weapons will be used.34 Many
anal ysts have pointed to the brief, b l oody Kargil conflict of 1999 as evidence that
South Asia’s strat egic arsenals do not contribute t o stability and m ay lead to the use
of nuclear weapons. 35
28 U.S. Departme nt of Defense, Proliferation: Threat and Response , 1997.
29 Ben Sheppard, “South Asia Nears Nuclear Boiling Point,” Jane’s In t e l l i gence Review,
30 J oseph Cirincione, “ T he Asi an Nuclear Reaction Chain,” Foreign Policy, Spring 2000.
31 Michael K r epon, “Missile Defense a nd the Asian Cascade,” i n The I mpact of US Ballistic
Miss i l e Defenses on Southern Asia, M ichael Krepon and Chris Gagne, eds., Henry L.
Stimson Center Report No. 46, Washington, D.C., J uly 2002.
32 For an overview of t his debate , s e e S c o t t Sagan and K enneth Waltz, The Spread of
Nuclear Weapons: A Debate (New York: W W Norton & Co), 1995.
33 For an example of this logi c applied t o South Asia, see Devin Hagerty, The Consequences
of Nuclear Proliferation: Lessons from South Asia (Cambridge : M IT Press), 1998.
34 See, for examp l e , S c o t t Sagan, “T he Perils of Proliferation i n South Asia,” i n M ichael
Chambers, e d., South Asia i n 2020 (Carlisle, PA: Ar my War College).
35 At least t wo credible reports indicate t hat India and Paki stan came perilously close t o a
Only seven m onths after t he May 1998 tests, the m ain architect of the
“benchm ark” fram ework, t hen-Deput y S ecret ary o f S t at e S t robe Tal bot t , not ed t h at
the New Delhi and Is lamabad government s were j ustifyi ng their m ove s t o overt
capabilities with reference t o t he U.S.-Soviet ex perience, “almost as if they see C old
W ar b rinkmanship between the s uperpower s as s omething to be emulated.” He
warned that such a perspective misreads t he reality of U.S.-Soviet interactions, and
that historic, geographic, and e c o nomic di fferences appear si gn i fi cant i n t he S out h
Asian case. 36 This use of t he Cold War ex perience illustrates t he general
proliferation optimism of t he Indian and P akistani governments i n contrast with the
proliferation pessimism ex pressed by s ome U.S. government offici al s, es peci al ly
those i n t he State Department. As noted a bove, Bush Administration o fficials h ave
been more muted i n t heir criticism of S outh Asian strategi c arsenal s.
Both India and Pakistan have claimed t o b e s eeking only t he nuclear weapons
needed for minimum credible d eterrence (MC D). 37 Most In d i an and P akistani
planners have conceived o f M CD as a s ignificantly scaled-down form o f t he massive
urban/industrial retaliation envisaged under t he U.S. nuclear doctrine o f t he 1950s,
based o n t he ability to launch a retaliatory strike that would i n f l i c t “unacceptable
damage” upon an adversary. 38 Given t he ex pressed positions of the Indian a n d
Pakistani governments and their observabl e b ehaviors as noted in the s ections above,
it would appear that some form of strategi c arms race is taking place on t h e A s i a n
Subcontinent, albeit one in which progress i s limited b y economic and t echnological
fact ors. There ex i st s n o consensus, however, o n t h e q u est i o n o f how such
nuclear exchange in J une 1999 (Bruce Reidel , “ American Diplomacy and t he 1999 K a rgil
S u mmi t a t Blair House,” Center f or the Advanced Study of India, University o f
Pennsyl va nia, May 2002; Sanj ay Badri-Maharaj , “Nuclear India’s Status: Examination of
Cl a i ms i n t h e NBC Re por t , ” Indian Defence Review (Delhi), Spring 2000).
36 Deputy Secretary [ of State] St robe Talbott, “U.S. Diplomacy in South Asia: A Progr ess
Report,” U.S. Department of State Dispatch, December 16, 1998.
37 “Address by t he Prime M inister a t Founder’s Day Function of Bhabha Atomic Research
Center, October 31, 2002,” Indian Embassy, Washington, D.C., a va ilable a t
[http://meaindia.nic.in/speech/2002/10/31spc 01.htm] ; “ Pakistan Not Involve d In Any Ar ms
Race: President, Premier,” Pakistan Press International, August 17, 2003. T here i s debate
over the number of weapons needed for M CD. Estimates that provide a r ange cite from a s
few as 20 t o as many as 400 warheads on each side (see, for example, Ami t Gupta, “After
the Bomb: U.S. Policy T oward a Nucl e a r S o u t h Asia,” Mediterranean Quarterly 10, 2,
Spring 1999, for a lower e stimat e , and D. Ramana, “What Next? Way to a Credible
Deterrent,” Rakshak Monitor 2, 3 ( Bombay), Nove mber 1999, for a higher estimate). T he
New Delhi government has expressed a belief t hat an effective M CD will require a t riad of
delivery systems (land, sea, and air) ( “Draft Report of t he National Security Advi sory Board
on Indian Nuclear Doctrine, Aug. 17, 1999,” Indi an Embassy, Washington, D.C., a va ilable
38 Gregory Giles and J ames Doyle, “Indian and Pakistani Views on Nuclear Deterrence,”
Comparative Strategy 15, 1996. Many analysts believe that Pakistan’s assumed
conventional disadvantage causes its strategi sts t o both r ej ect a no-first-use pledge and to
consider the use of tactical nuclear weapons to repulse a hypothetical Indian armored t hrust,
perhaps even by detonating s uch weapons over Paki stani t erritory (Saeed Is ma t , “A
Conceptual Nuclear Doctrine,” Defence J ournal (K arachi), M arch 2000).
developments affect the l evel of regi onal s tability. One’s perspective on t his i ssue
tends to be decisively colored b y fundamental beliefs about the u ti lity of nuclear
deterrence and the ex t ent t o which it obtai ns in South Asi a . S u ch beliefs often are
derived t hrough analysis of key variables t h a t a ffect stability in the region: Indian
and P akistani strategi c capabilities and co n t ro l m echanisms, and thei r potential
deployment of missile defense s ys tems.
Regional S trategic Force Capabilities
India and Pakistan have the ability t o s t ri ke and destroy military and civilian
targets outside o f t h eir respective count ries by means o f nuclear weapons, b allistic
m i ssi l es, and ai rcraft . These forces, associ at ed readi n ess post u re s , com m and and
control, and missile defense constitute a s trat egic capability on a regional s cal e. This
section will discuss t hese capabilities and thei r impact on regi onal s ecurity. Det ailed
descriptions of the s pecific missiles i n Indi a’s and P aki st an’s arsenal s are p resent ed
I ndi an Weapons and Del i ver y S ys tems
In J une of 1998, as required by t he Chemical W eapons Convention (CWC),
India d eclared that it possessed chemical w eapons; i t i s now reportedly i n t he process
of destroyi ng its c h e mical weapons stockpile. India, a 1973 sign atory o f t he
Bi o l o gical W eapons Convention (BW C), i s b elieved t o h ave an active b iologi cal
defense research program as w el l as t he necessary i n frast ruct ure t o d evel op a v ari et y
of biological agents. 39
Estimates o n India’s n u c l ear weapons arsenal v ary but a number o f analysts
believes t hat, as of 200 2 , India h ad between 30 to 35 nuclear weapons with yi elds
varying bet ween 5 t o 25 kilotons (Kts) (desp ite an Indian claim t hat i t h ad detonated
a nucl e a r d e v i c e o n May 11, 2002 with a 4 3 KT yield).40 These d evi ces are l i k el y
configured as aerial bombs or missile warheads. W h ile a p recise breakdown o f
number o f bombs versus missile warhead s i s unknown, a s enior P akistani military
official reportedly claimed t hat t he majority of In d i a ’ s nuclear weapons were
configured as aerial bombs. 41
W h ile India reportedly h as a number o f d i fferent types of aircraft, some anal ys ts
believe that it would use 1970s- and 198 0 s - v i n t a ge Soviet-built MiG-27 Fl ogger
aircraft, with a range of 800 km, and the Anglo-French J aguar aircraft with a 1,600
39 “Chemi cal and Biologi cal Weapons at a Glance,” Arms Control Association Fact Sheet,
Washington, D.C., September 2002.
40 “India ’ s N uclear Forces” - 2002, Bulletin of the Atomi c Scientists, V olume 58, March
41 “T he Consequences of Nuclear Conf lict Between India a nd Paki stan,” Natural Resources
Defense Council, J une 4, 2002.
km range t o d eliver nuclear aerial bombs. 42 The S ukhoi-30MKI aircraft purchased
from R ussia with a reported capacity to carry an 8,000 kg payl oad, and with a normal
range o f 3,200 km and an air-to-air refueling range of about 7,000 km, gives India a
nuclear deep strike capability and s ome ex p erts believe that India acquired t he Sukhoi
to counter China’s d eep-strike capability. 43
India i s s uspected of having successfully flight tested an Agni II missile (range
3,000 - 3,500 km) carrying a nuclear warhead assembly without its plutonium core
in 1999 and again in 2001.44 W h i l e s u c h t e s t s are consi d ered cruci al for warhead
development b y s ome ex p erts, s ome nuclear scientists believe that additional flight
testing t o adequately test the weapon’s fuz e and trigger will be required b efore India
could deploy nuclear-armed missiles operationally. 45 According t o p ress reports,
Indi a’s Defense Mi ni st er, George Fernandez , reported t o t he Ind i an Parliament on
J u ly 29, 2003 that India h ad conducted 2 0 t ests of seven d ifferent types of missiles,
including two Agn i v ariants, during t he first h alf o f 2003.46
While not a w eapon or delivery system, India’s sat ellites contribute t o its
strategi c capabilities. Some anal ys ts believe that India’s net work of communication
satellites and its Technology Ex periment Satellite, w h i ch r eportedly h as an optical
resolution capac i t y of one meter, provides India with a s trat egic early warning
capability that could hel p ensure t he survivability of its nuclear forces . T h e s e
satellites could also help improve India’s military co mmand, control, communication,
and i ntelligence capacities.47
Paki stani Weapons and Del i ver y S ys tems
Pakistan, a member of the C W C since 1997, is not believed t o possess chemical
weapons but , accordi n g t o a J a nuary 2001 U. S . De part m ent of Defens e (DOD) report ,
has imported a number o f dual-use chemical s with commercial app l i cations that
could also b e u sed t o m ake chemical w eapons. P akistan, a B W C member since
1974, was assessed b y t he DOD in 2001 as having the resources and s cientific
capability to conduct limited b iologi cal warfare research and d evelopment, but was
not believed t o possess biological weapons. 48
42 India’s Nuclear Forces - 2002, p. 2.
43 Srinj oy Chowdhury,”Sukhois Capable of Hitting Chinese T argets,” Statesman (London),
September 28, 2002.
44 Ibid., p. 3.
45 “India’s Slow-Motion Nuclea r D e p l oyme nt,” Carnegie Endowment for I nternational
Peace Non-Proliferation Project, Washington D.C., September 7, 2000, p. 1.
46 “T wenty Missile T ests i n India i n t he First Half of 2003 at a cost of 16 Million Dollars,”
Agence France Presse, J uly 30, 2003.
47 “Upendra Choudhury, India’s Space Assets and t he Secu r i t y Applications,” Hindu
(Madras), November 15, 2002.
48 “Proliferation: T hreat and Response,” Office of t he Secretary of Defense, J a nuary 2001,
In formation o n P akistan’s nuclear w eapons arsenal i s s peculative but some
analysts believe that Pakistan possesses between 24 and 48 nuclear weapons
configured as both aerial bombs and missile warheads. Despite Pakistani claims of
high er yi eld weapons, s eis mic measurements from P akistani nuclear detonations on
May 2 8 and 30, 2002 suggest weaponiz ed yi e lds m ore along the o rder of 9-12 KT
and 4 -6 KT, respect i v el y. 49 It is possible t hat P akistan h as high er yi eld weapons that
have not been tested.
W h ile Pakistan has obtained a variety o f combat aircraft from d ifferent nations,
many ex perts believe that the m ost likel y aircraft t o be used t o deliver nuclear
weapons would b e t he U.S. F-16 figh ter. Twenty eigh t F-16 A (singl e s eat) and 12
F-16 B (two s eat) fighters wer e d e l i v ered to Pakistan between 1983 and 1987, and
8 o f t hese original aircraft are b elieved t o b e n o l onger i n s e rvice. Pakistan’s 1988
order o f 1 1 additional F-16 A/Bs and additional o rders for F-16s since t hen h ave not
been fulfilled due to the 1985 congressional enactment of the P ressler Amendment
(Section 620E of the Foreign Assistance Act o f 1961 as amended) which forbids
military aid t o s uspected nuc lear weapons states. 50 Despite the S eptember 22, 2001
P resi d ent i al Det erm i n at i o n wai vi ng t h e P ressl er Am endm ent and ot her s anct i ons on
India and Pakistan, t he Administration’s current five- year, $ 3 billion aid package
will reportedly not include the p romised F-16s, d espite President M usharraf’s request
t h at their s ale b e approved. 51 Pakistan’s current fleet of F-16s is belie v e d t o b e
capable of delivering a 1,000 kg nuclear bomb t o a range o f 1,600 km. 52
While some anal ysts believe that Pakistan’s Hatf, M -11, and S haheen short and
medium range missiles are nuclear-capable, P akistan’s A.Q. Khan, director of the
organiz ation t hat builds t he Gha u r i m i ssile, reportedly claims that the Ghauri i s
current l y P aki st an’s onl y nucl ear-capabl e m i ssi l e.53 In May o f 1998, the P akistani
government claimed t hat i t was ready t o equip t he Ghauri with nuclear weapons. 54
M i ssile-Related Stability Factor s
A number of fact ors i nfluences t he stability of India’s and Pakistan’s missile
forces. T hese factors i nclude:
Readiness Posture. India’s and Pakistan’s depl o yment of missiles and
nucl ear-capabl e ai rcraft as wel l as nucl ear warheads and bom bs has b een descri bed
49 “T able of Paki stani Nuclear Forces” - 2002, Natural Resources Defense Cou n c il,
Nove mb er 25, 2002.
50 T a ble of Pakistani Nuclear Forces - 2002, p. 2.
51 Mike Allen, “U.S. Will Increase A i d t o P a ki stan,” Washington Post , J une 25, 2003. Of
note, the U.S. government r epaid Pakistan i n 1998 for t he undelivered F-16 aircraft.
52 T a ble of Pakistani Nuclear Forces - 2002, p. 2.
54 Anthony Cordesma n, “Weapons of Mass De struction i n t he Middle E a s t , ” Ce nter for
Strategic and International Studies, Washington D.C., J une 2002, p. 103.
by some analys ts as a “virtual s tate of de-alert.”55 Regi onal analysts assert that both
India and Pakistan maintain similar readiness postures. Each country claims that its
missiles are not truly d eployed but, o n a day-to-day basis, are m aintained i n what i s
described as a state o f “induction.” Induction i s d escribed as the p eacetime, non-
threat ening activity of acquiring a weapon and t es ting and trai n i ng with it.
Deployment is described as a belligerent posture with missiles act ually on launchers,
deployed to forward l ocations, and kept in a h igh s tate of readiness for use.56 Bo t h
countri es have been accu s e d of having deployed t heir missiles on a number of
occasions. During t he J u ly 1999 Kargil crisis, U.S. i ntelligence reportedly d etected
the P akistani military deploying nuclear - armed missiles, a fact reportedly unknown
to Pakistani P rime Minister Nawaz S harif who was i n W ashington D.C. o n J uly 4 th
conferring with Pres ident C linton i n an attempt t o de-es cal at e t he Kargil situation. 57
Bo th countries’ nuclear weapons are b elieved t o b e s tored i n facilities s eparate
from ai rfi el ds and m i ssi l e uni t s for bot h s ecuri t y and m ai nt enance purposes. One
observer s uggested that in order for India and Pakistan to have more credible nuclear
postures, both countries should i ncrease t he st ate o f alert of their nuclear forces to at
least p rovide a rudimentary capability to launch under attack. He posited t hat s uch
a posture c o u l d b e p articularly of use t o India i n t erms of China, which i s believed
to keep a portion of its ballistic missile fo rce o n a h i gh stat e of alert.58 Many
anal ys t s , however, b el i e v e t h a t t h e current st at e o f al ert i n Indi a and P aki st an i s a
cred i b l e d e t errence posture and t hat any move by either country to increase its
posture could h ave n egative consequences.
Command and Con t r ol. Unl i k e Indi a, whi ch h as decl ared a “no-fi rst -use
policy” for its nuclear weapons, P akistan h as not issued a s imilar s tatement. In
February 2000, Pakistan announced the cr eation o f a National C ommand Authority
(NCA) comprised o f an Employment Control C ommittee, Development C ontrol59
Committee, and a Strategic Plans Division. P aki st an’s P resi d ent , General
Musharraf, serves as leader of the NCA and likel y would ex ercise ultimate authority
over employm ent o f nuclear weapons. P ak istan’s NCA membership repo rtedly
includes o fficials from “foreign affairs, defense and interior ministers, chiefs of all
m ilitary services and heads of s trat egic organizations.” General M usharraf a l s o
reportedly established a Strategic Force Command that is responsible for the
55 Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu, “Regi onal Perspectives: South Asia,” International
Perspectives on Missile Proliferation and Defense , Center f or Nonproliferation Studies and
the M ountbatten Centre f or International Studies, London, March 2001, p. 67.
56 Ibid., p. 68, for discussion on readiness postures.
57 Bruce Riedel, “Ame rican Diplomacy a n d t he 1999 K a rgil Summi t a t t he Blair House,”
Policy Paper Series - Center f or the Advanced Study of India, University of Pennsyl va nia,
58 Sidhu, p. 68.
59 Gaurav K a mpani,”Safety Concerns About the Comma nd and Control of P a ki s tan’s
St rategi c Forces, Fissile Material, and Nuclear Installations,” Montere y In s titute of
International Studies, September 28, 2001, p. 1.
deployment of strategi c missiles.60 While some ex perts consider the establishment
of a political -military command and control hierarchy reassuring, o t hers point out
that in order for it to be effective t here must be clear and undisputed lines of authority
and est abl i s hed and pract i ced procedures.
On J anuary 4, 2003, the Indian government announced the establishment o f its
Nucl ear Command Authority. R eportedly, the Nuclear Command Authority consists
of a t wo-tiered political council head ed b y t h e P rime Minister who will be the
singular authority for l aunching a nuclear attack and an ex ecutive council chaired b y
the P rime Minister’s national s ecurity advisor who will provide i n p ut for decision
making purposes and ex ecute directives from t he political council. 61 As part of the
establishmen t o f t he Nuclear Command Authority, t he Indian government also
est abl i s hed a st rat e gi c forces com m and whi ch, accordi n g t o p ress report s , woul d
com m and al l s t rat egi c asset s defi ned as “ai rcraft , l and-based m i ssi l es , and nucl ear
weapons and bombs.”62 W h ile the Indian government cla imed t hat t he establishment
of the Nuclear Command Authority and t he strategi c forces command were logi cal
com m and and cont rol arrangem ent s , s om e o f f i c i al s conceded t h at t h e creat i o n o f
these t wo entities was also a response t o i nternational concerns about In d i a’ s
“rudimentary, almost non-ex istent nuclear command and control s tructure and also
to send a ‘firm’ m essage to Pakistan.”63
Debate Over Regional M issile Defense
R egi o n a l m i s s i l e defense h as been vi ewed by som e anal ys t s as a pot ent i al
catalys t t o p romote stability and b y o thers as an i nherently volatile proposition which
could upset the region’s s trate g i c b a l ance. In J u ly 2002, a Deputy Assistant
Secretary for Defense p resented DOD’s pos ition o n regional missile defense t o t he
Senate Governmental Affairs C ommittee: “W e believe that missile defenses ,
generally speaking, are part of an i nherently stabilizing concept. The right to defend
yourself agai nst t hese missiles i s s omet hing we feel is a m at t e r t o ex plore with the64
Indians, with the P akistanis i f t hey’re interested.”
This Pentagon position reportedly i s not shared by the S tate Department. During
the sam e S enat e Governmental Affairs C ommittee heari n g, Stat e Department
60 “Pakistan Improves Nuclear Command and Control Sys tem,” Stratfor.com, December 7,
61 Rahul Bedi, “ India Establishe s Nuclear Comma nd Authority,” Jane’ s Defense Weekly,
J a nuary 15, 2003, p. 12.
62 “In d i a Forgi ng Special Unit to Operate Nuclear Ar senal,” Ne ws (Karachi), October 1,
63 Bedi, p. 12.
64 Davi d Ruppe, “India: Washington Considers Allowing T r ansfer of the Arrow Interceptor,”
Global Security Newswire, J uly 30, 2003.
officials ex p ressed concern t hat i f India obtained t he j o int U.S. - Is raeli Arrow
ballistic missile interceptor, that it might heighten tensions with Pakistan.65
The I ndi an Appr oach to M i ssi l e Defense
Some ex perts bel i e v e t hat India’s m otivation for a missile defense capability
was a result of Pakistan’s acquisition of M -11 s hort-range ballistic missiles from
China i n 1992 and its continued d evelopm e n t o f l onger range and more capable
missiles.66 Other analysts note t hat India’s des ire fo r missile defense i s also a
function o f its concern about the C hinese DF-21med i um-range ballistic missiles
believedtobedeployedinwestern China. Pakistan’s periodic d eclarations that it
would u se nuclear weapons against India i f i t feels t hreatened likely reinforced New
Delhi’s des ire t o obtai n a ballistic missile defense capability.
India i s reported t o b e pursuing t wo a pproaches to regi onal missile d e f e n s e:
creat i n g an i ndi genous s ys t em or purchas i ng a com p l e t e s ys t em from another country.
Since l ate 1993, India’s Defense Research and Development Organiz ation( DRDO)
has reportedly b een involved i n efforts t o m odify the Indian-designed Akash low-to-
medium altitude surface-to-air missile (SAM) i nto an i nterceptor capable of engagi ng
ballistic missiles.67 While some analys ts report t hat eff o r t s are s till underway to
develop t he Akash i nto a missile defense s ys tem, there h ave b een no op e n - s o u r c e
reports of the Akash being t es ted against ballistic missile target s.
A number o f reports suggest that India also i s i nterested i n purchasin g t he
j o i n t l y-devel oped U.S . - Is rael i Arrow M i ssi l e Defense s ys t em from Israel . Because
the United S tates has played a m aj or financial and scientific role in developing the
Arrow, any l egal ex port o f t he sys t e m b y Is rael would likely require prior U.S.
approval. Both the S enat e and House Armed Services Committees have ex pressed
reservations about a p o s s i b l e s ale t o India o r o ther countries (Turkey h as also
ex pressed an i nt erest i n t he Arrow) and reportedly h ave t he following concerns:
! Although t he Arrow is a defensive system, it could possibly be re-
engi neered into and offensive s ys tem;
! It s s al e coul d possi bl y t ri gger a regi onal o ffensi v e arm s race;
! Is rael has a l l eged ly tran sferred o r attempted t o t ransfer critical
military technologies t o countries of concern s uch as C hina;
! Such a s ale could violate the provisions of the M issile Technology
Control R egime (MTCR), a missile nonproliferation arrangement t o
which t he United S tates i s a party; and,
66 See CRS Report RL31555, China and Proliferation of Weapons of Mass De struction and
Missiles: Policy I ssues, by Shirley A. K an
! Concern t hat Israel would p rofit from t h e s a l e of a p roduct l argely
paid for by t he United S tates and might al so constitute competition
to Rayt heon’s U.S. P atriot missile system.68
The Arrow 2 missile system is designed to provide terminal phas e 69 i n t ercept
agai nst s hort and medium range ballistic missiles and reportedly can detect and t rack
up to 14 inbound missiles at d istances as far as 500 km away and t hen i ntercept t hem
as cl ose as 16 t o 48 kilometers from t he missile system . S ome ex perts believe that
India would deploy t he Arrow s ys tem along the line of control s eparating Kas hmir
and t he India-Pakistan intern at ional border t o p rotect population and military
cent ers. 70 India has also reporte d l y b e e n in negotiations with Russia s ince 1995 to
acquire either the S -300PMU-1 or S-300V an ti-tactical ballistic missile system. 71
In May 2003, an Indian newspaper reported t hat India h ad discussed s ale o f t he
U.S. Patriot Advanced Capabilities-3 or P AC-3 ai r and missile defense s ys tem with
U.S. Deputy S ecret ary of S tate Richard Armitage. According t o Indian authorities
cited, discussions have been underway with the Bush Administration s ince May 2002
about such a s ale, but the U.S. government has not gi ven R aytheon t he go -ahead to
provide India with pricing, availability, and other i n formation needed to begi n t he
Observers offer a variet y of implications for Indian missile defense. Some feel
that India’s d eploym ent o f a missile defense s ys tem could erode Pa k i stan’s
confidence that its F-1 6 s an d missiles, if vulnerable t o i ntercept, could continue to
provide a credible nuclear deterrent against Ind i a . 73 O t h er analysts believe that an
Indian bal listic missile defense capability would break the current stat e of m utual
“non-weaponiz ed d eterrence” 74 an d l ead Pakistan to mount nuclear warheads o n
deployed missiles which could destabilize t h e region. Another possibility is that
Pakistan may adopt a “use i t or l ose it” policy w h e r e by Pakistan might employ its
nucl ear forces earl y i n t h e confl i ct t o p enet rat e Indi an defenses. 75 Another possibility
is that Pakistan could embark o n a progra m t o d evel op a great er num ber o f m i ssi l es
and nuclear warheads i n order to saturate and overwhelm India’s ballistic missile
68 J ohn Donnelly, “ Congress Warns Bush, Israel on Arrow Exports,” Defense Week,
V olume 24, Number 22, J une 2, 2003, p. 1.
69 Terminal phase is the portion of a ballistic mi ssiles f light between atmospheric r eentry
70 Ramatanu Maitra, “An Arrow t o Washington’s Heart,” Asia Ti me s Online, August 20,
71 Gr e go r y K oblentz, “Viewpoint: T heater Missile Defense and South Asia: A V olatile
Mix,” The Nonproliferation Review/Spring-Summe r 1997, p. 55.
72 Shishir Gupta, “India Hopes f or Patriot Nod,” Indian Express (Bombay) , M ay 23, 2003.
73 K oblentz, p. 56.
74 Both India a nd Paki stan are believe d t o t heir have nuclear warheads a nd bombs separated
from t heir mi ssiles and delivery aircraft, thus providing a degr ee of security from undetected
first use or accidental launch.
75 K oblentz, p. 56.
defenses . S ome analysts rej ect thes e possibilities and cl ai m t hat Indian m i s s i l e
defense would contribute t o regional s tability but provide little ex planation as t o how
missile defense would act ually achieve this.
The Pakistani Approach to M i ssile Defense
W ith the waiver o f t he P ressler Amendment b ecause of P akistan’s support for
the United S tates i n its war on t errorism, t he Indian pres s has reported t hat P akistan
has i nitiated negotiations with the United S tates t o purchase a ballistic missile
defense s ys tem.76 It cl aims that Pakistan is attem p t i n g t o acquire either the P at riot
system or the Hawk, or Nike-Hercules system. The Hawk and Nike-Hercules
syst em s are no l onger i n act i v e s ervi ce w i th the U.S. Army and were design ed
primarily to shoot down S oviet-era long-range bombers. W hile both s ys tems are i n
use around the world with a variety of militaries, i t i s not known how effective t hey
would be against modern ai rcraft and ballistic missiles. Some anal ys ts feel that the
acquisition of one of thes e s ys tems could hel p dissuade P akistan from further missile
development i n an attempt t o overcome India’s ballistic missile defense capabilities.
P aki st an report edl y h as st at ed t h at i t would d ep l o y any missile defense s ys tems
around nuclear facilities and at s i t e s w here missiles are built and s tored. Such a
deployment might be intended t o i nsu r e that at l east s ome o f P akistan’s nuclear
warheads and missiles would s urvive an Indi an strike and b e available as a deterrent.
If Pakistan did acquire a ballistic missile defense s ys tem from t he United S tates,
India might react by producing m ore mis siles and nuclear weapons to offset an
enhanced capability by Pakistan to intercept Indian ai rcraft or missiles, particularly
if Pakistan acquired t he more modern and capable Patriot system. Another concern
could b e t hat P atriot technology p rovided t o P akistan might be transf e r r e d by
Pakistan to China, North Korea, or Iran and b e u s e d i n t he development o f
countermeasures to prevent U.S. i ntercept of t heir ballistic missiles.
Key I ssues and Options for C ongress
Nonpr ol i f er ati on
MTCR-Re late d Issues. Some ex perts h ave ex p ressed concern t hat India o r
Pakistan might ex por t t heir missiles or nuclear technology t o o ther nations,
increasing t he number o f nuclear missile-armed nations the reby i ncreasing t he
security risk to the United S tates and other countries. Neither India nor Pakistan (nor
China, for that matter) are members of the Missile Technology Control Regime
(MTCR),77 which was established i n 1987 to restrict the p roliferation o f W MD-
capable ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and unmanned aerial v ehicles (UAVs) and
t h eir associated technology. The M TCR i s not a l egally binding treaty o r forma l
76 Information i n t his paragraph on U.S. anti-mi ssile systems i s from “Pak t o Acquire Anti-
Ballistic Missile from U.S.,” Times of I ndia (Delhi),May 15, 2003.
77 For det ai l e d M T CR i nf or ma t i on, see [ ht t p: / / www.mt cr .i nf o/ engl i s h/ i ndex.ht ml ] .
agreem ent , but MTC R m em b ers d o vol unt ari l y agree t o e nforce com m o n ex port
control s tandards.
Many anal ys ts agree t hat t he M T C R h a s h ad a positive impact on slowing
missile proliferation. Congress may consider the possibility of renewed U.S. efforts
to gain Indian and P a k i s t a ni accession to the M TCR. Because of the l egally non-
binding aspect of the M TCR and i t s requirements for effective n ational ex port
control, MTCR membership might be a first step in helping t o promote other bilateral
or regi onal i nitiatives to addres s missile pro liferation and security concerns. C ritics
of this approach might cite both countries’ l ong-standing resistance to enter i nto what
Pakistan’s Permanent M inister t o t he U. N. called i n 1997 “a cartel formed b y s ome
industrializ ed countries for t he purpose o f p lacing controls on the t ransfer o f
technology” and “an arrangement for promoting t heir own s ecurity interests only. ”78
Technical Assistance. Various techno l o gi es might reduce t he risk of an
India-Pakistan nuclear ex ch ange. T echnical assistance fo r both countries could t ake
a number o f forms. A version o f a Nunn-Lu gar-typ e p rogram has b een discussed i n
Congress and s ome analysts s ee India and Pakistan as prime candidat e s f o r s u c h a79
program. Other i nitiatives such as establishing a missile laun ch n o t i fication
agreement o r hotline might be considered. M ilitary sales d esigne d t o h elp each
country safegu ard its missiles from accidental launch are also a possible option.
Opponents o f t echnical assista n c e c o uld argue that it would v irtually be
impossible t o ex t end any form of technical assistance to one nation without arousing
sus p icion i n t he other country. W hat we might consider as safegu arding ballistic
missiles from accidental launch could b e cons trued as improving the ability to launch
a missile surprise attack by either country. Another consideration i s t hat o f equity.
Pakistan, with a smaller and less modern military, c o u l d a rgue that it deserves
cons iderably more technical assistance than India——a position t hat might arouse
considerable Indian opposition.
Export Controls. Another option t hat co u l d b e ex plored i s a multilateral
initiative t o assist India and Pakistan in improving thei r ex port control systems,
particularly as they pertain t o missile t echnology. Such an initiative could b e a “stand
alone” effort undertaken to improve the overall quality of each country’s system, o r
it could b e i n anticipation o f eventual MTCR m embership. In order for a country to
becom e an MTC R m em b er, i t m u s t b e approved for membership by all current
members and meet stringent ex port control requirements.
It is not known how receptive India o r P akistan would b e t o s uch an i nitiative.
Ex port controls are essentially a domestic legal m atter and U.S. assistance in this area
m i g h t not be wel l recei ved o r even appreci at ed, for t h at m at t er. In P aki st an’s ca s e ,
78 “Missile T e c h nology Control Regime - It s Destabilizing Impact on South Asia”,
presented by t he Permanent Representative of Pakistan t o t he U.N. at the U.N. Conference
on a “ New Age nda for Disarma me nt and Regional Security,” J uly 23, 1997.
79 For a detailed analysis of t he potential application of a Nunn-Lugar-type program i n India
and/or Paki stan see CRS Report RL31589, Nuclear Threat Reduction M easures f or India
and Pakistan , by Sharon Squassoni.
ex port controls which could limit its missile-related dealings with North Korea and
Iran would likel y m eet considerable resistance fro m go v e rnment and military
Confidence-Building Measures. C onfi d ence-bui l d i n g m easures, o r C BMs,
are d escri b ed as “m easures d e s i gn ed t o reduce t he ri sk of del i b erat e o r acci dent al80
conflict and build trust by dem onstrating t he ability of the parties t o keep promises .”
Confidence-building m easures are b y n o m eans n ew to India and Pakistan. The 1999
Lahore Declaration entailed a number o f C BM s d e s igned t o “reduce t he risks o f a
nucl ear ex change prom pt ed by an acci dent or m i s i n t erpret at i o n o f a nucl ear or81
ballistic missile test.” Pakistan’s deployment of troops to Kargil and t he ensuing
figh ting i n J uly 1999 effectivel y d e r a i led t he Lahore p rocess and its associated
Some anal ysts suggest that the United S tates could p l a y a ro le in helping t o
establish a series of CBMs in the region. Ex perts point to the p reviously abandoned82
hotline, notifications of military ex erci ses, and missile launch notificat i o n s .
Another possible C BM could b e an aerial m onitoring effort along the lines of the
Open Skies Agreem ent. If initial j oint monitoring flights along the Line of C ontrol
proved s uccessful, t hen d eeper, m ore i ntrusive flights might be a future option. Other
possible m easures might involve assisting India and Pakistan in the establishment of
a m echanism t o settle disputes, perhaps modeled on t he U.S. - R ussian Nucl ear Risk
Reduction C enters in Moscow and W ashington, or providing technological support
in establishing a s eries o f ground- based sensors in critical, d isputed areas. S ome
ex perts assert that the Unit e d S tates would not necessarily have to be directly
involved i n all aspects o f m ediating o r m on itoring but could p rovide technological
support and advice as needed.
Critics of regional C BMs might em phasize the past failure of CBMs due to the
volatile nature of the region. Resurrecting previously-attempted C BMs, only t o have
t h em suspended due t o a d i s agreem ent o r i nci d ent , coul d furt h er t h ei r argum ent t hat
the region i s not conducive t o t his p articular approach. P erhaps a m ore p ractical and
cost-effective approach might be t o attempt t o first settle regi onal disputes
diplomatically and t hen i nstitute appropriate CBMs on an increm ental basis based on
equal commitments from both India and Pakistan.
Proliferation S ecurity I n itia tive (Counterproliferation). 83 The
P r o l i f er ation S ecurity In itiative (PSI), announced by President Bush o n M ay 31 ,
80 “Building Confidence in India a nd Paki stan,” South Asia Program, Center f or Strategic
and International Studies, Washington, D.C., August 1, 2002, p. 1.
81 Howard Diamond,”India, Paki stan Agree on Security, Confidence-Building M easures,”
Arms Control Today, J a nuary/February 1999, p. 1.
82 Information on confidence building measures in this paragr aph i s t aken from “Building
Confidence in India a nd Paki stan,” p. 2.
83 Fact Sheet available a t
[ ht t p: / / www.whi t e house.gov/ news/ r el eases/ 2003/ 09/ pr i nt / 20030904-11.ht ml ] .
associated delivery s ys tems and t echnology. Ten n ations besides t he United S tates
have agreed to take steps t o s top t he flow of these items including t h e s eiz u re of
shipments a s t hey t ransit air, land, and s ea routes. 84 Accordi n g t o t he
Administration’s Fact Sh eet , t he PSI principles are “fully consistent with national
legal authorities and with relevant internat i o nal l aws and frameworks.” The PSI
group met i n P aris in October 2003 and adopted these p rinciples d etailed i n t he fact
sheet. A series of U.S.-sponsored naval i nt erdiction ex ercises called “Pacific
Protector” were conducted i n S eptember 2003, involving Australia and Great Britain,
as part of the PSI. 85 While the Administration claims that the PSI does not target any
particular country, m any ex p erts believe that the PSI was d eveloped i n response t o
growing North Korean missile ex ports and t echnological assistance to countries of
concern. In theory, both India and Pakistan could b e s ubject to seiz ures of W M D and
missile-related items under t he PSI.
Congress may further ex plore t he legality of the PSI both i n t erms of U.S. and
international l aw. Other issues for C ongress may i nclude how the PSI complements
or detracts from current nonproliferation regimes. Congress might also review the
scope of the PSI in ter m s o f India and Pakistan — will proscribed shipments t o or
from t hese c ountries be interdicted o r will we choose not to interdict i n o rder to
maintain favorable relations with both countries and t heir continued cooperation i n
the global war on terror?
The CRS Report Weapons of Mass Destruction C ounterproliferation: Leg al
Issues for Ships and Aircraft questions the l egality of the PSI’s intent to interdict sea,
air, and l and s hipments. The report acknowledges that international l aw recogn iz es
that stat es have a limited right to i nterdict vessels and aircraft i n speci fic
circumstances, but suggests t hat t he PSI’s wide-ranging p rovisions to interdict and
seiz e W MD and missile-related t echnologies o n t he high seas appear “doubtful”
under current international l aw. S uggestions to address t his i s s u e range from
amending current international l aws governing t he sea and air t o i nclude W M D and
missile technologies t o amending cu rrent nonproliferation t reaties.86
Pakistan-North Korea Relations. Of cri t i cal concern t o bot h C ongress and
the Administration i s a suspect ed Pakistan-North Korean proliferation relationship.
Both countries stand accused o f p roliferating missile and nuclear technology, a n d
m any anal ys t s b el i eve t h at rapi d advancem ent s i n P aki st an’s m i ssi l e and p erhaps
nucl ear program can be di rect l y at t ri but ed t o Nort h K orean assi st ance. S o m e ex pert s
su ggest that , as P akistan’s missile programs have matured and advanced, P akistan
84 NPI Participan t s : A u s t r alia, Britain, France, Germany, It aly, J apan, the Netherlands,
Poland, Portugal, a nd Spain.
85 “The Pr oliferation Security Initiative: Naval Interception Bush-St yl e,” Center for Defense
Information, August 25, 2003.
86 For f urther discussion of lega l a spects of t he PSI, s ee CRS Repo r t RL32097, We apons
of Mass Destruction Counterproliferation: Legal Issues for Ships and Aircraft, by J e nnifer
may be assisting North Korea i n its missile program, primarily by providing North
Korea w ith missile test flight data. P rior to September 22, 2001, when President
Bush issued a P residential Det ermination waiving a number o f s anctions against both
India and Pakistan, 87 sanctions were the primary means by which the United S tates
attempted t o compel P akistan t o t erminat e proliferation activities with North Korea.
Today, the s ituation i s considerably more complex and may m erit congressional
T h e B r ahMos Cruise Missile. Concerns have been raised about current
and p roposed U.S. missile defense vul n e rability to the alleged s upersonic, stealth-
enhanced BrahMos cruise missile being developed b y R ussia and India. Could t hese
m i ssiles i n t he hands of hostile states and non-state actors, provide them with a
dangerous as ymmetric military advantage? Another i ssue i s how difficult would i t
be to develop a nuclear warhead for t he BrahMos and what countries presently have
the sci entific and engineering capability to do so.
Vertical and Non-Mi ssile Proliferation. W h ile U.S . efforts t o s trengt hen
the i nternational nonprolifer a t io n regime have slowed under t he Bu sh
Administration, some observers advocat e i ncreasing p ressure on India and Pakistan
t o encourage t hei r accessi on t o such t reat i es as t he NP T and t h e C TBT. Moreover,
t h e w orl d ’s nascent nucl ear powers w at ch closely for any n ew U.S. development and
procurement o f nuclear weapons, and so U.S. decisions in this realm m ay have
cascadi n g effect s o n t he scope and p ace of gl obal p rol i ferat i o n p erspect i v e s and
behaviors. Thus, while some policy m akers b elieve that new U.S. nuclear weapons
would enhance d eterrence, others clai m t hat s uch weapons wo u l d undermine U.S.
nonproliferation goals. (See CRS Issue Brief IB90091, Nuclear N onproliferation
Issues , b y C arl Behrens; CRS Report R S20351, Comprehensive T est Ban Treaty: Pro
and Con , b y J onathan Medalia; and CRS Report R S21619, Nuclear Weapons and
U.S. National Security, by Amy W oolf.)
The ramifications of possibly providing U.S.-developed missile and air defense
systems t o In d i a a n d P a kistan are o f concern. W h ile some ex perts contend t hat
providing both countries with these s ys tems would h elp t o d e-escal ate t ensions others
argue t hat i t could hei ghten t ensions and possibly i nvite military “adventurism” by
creating a false s ense of security. In addition t o t he impact that missile defense might
have on India and Pakistan, its possible effects o n S ino-Indian relatio ns could b e a
W ere the United S tates t o p rovide s u c h systems t o India and Pakistan, i ssues
related t o t echnology t ransfer would ari se. P olicym akers, including m a n y in
Congress, would b e concerned about the pot ential for onward t ransfer o f advanced
U.S. missile defense t echnology t o countries such as North Korea, Iran, C hina, and
Russia. If these o r o ther countries had acces s t o U.S . missile defense t echnologies,
87 In a Presidential Determi nation s igned on September 22, 2001, President Bush wa i ved
sanctions on India and Paki stan and r eestablished military sales on selected items.
the potential m ay ex ist for them to develop c ountermeasures and p enetration aids t hat
coul d render U .S . t heat er m i ssi l e defenses l ess effect i v e.
For m ore t han one decade, t h e Uni t ed S t at es repeat edl y has ex p ressed concerns
about ongoing terrori sm in Pakistan and nei ghboring regi ons, a nd about the
continued ex i stence in Pakistan of outlawed t errorist groups. After September 2001,
t h ese concerns becam e acut e. S om e M e m bers of C ongress, al ong wi t h num erous
independent anal ys ts, have opined t hat a percei ved need for allies i n t he gl obal anti-
terrorist coalition has caused t he United S tates t o significantly mute its criticism of
South Asian WMD proliferation, and s igns o f onward proliferation activities by
P aki st an, i n p art i cul ar.88 It a ppears t hat continued U.S . focus on counterterrorism
policy requires a trade-off i n rela t i o n t o nonproliferation policy. Options for
Congress in addressing this issue i nclude adj u st m ent s i n U.S . d evel opm ent assi st ance
to improve economic and educational conditions in Pakistan, possibly with regard to
reform of the ex t ensive madrassa (religious school) s ys tem.89 A review of military
assistance to both India and Pakistan may a ffect levels of terrorism in the region. In
rec ent years, such assistance has emphasiz ed counterterrorism, i ncluding ground
transport, airlift, communication, surveillance, and emergency response equipment.
Initiatives t o help resolve t he Kashmir dispute might al so reduce t he inci dence of
regi onal t errorism.
Anot her facet of U.S . concern i n t hi s area regards fears t hat t errori st s i n P aki s t an
or India might gain access t o nuclear materials i n t h o s e countries.90 Options for
addressing this possibility include authorizing ex p ansion of Cooperative Threat
R ed u c t i o n p rogram s ai m ed at s ecuri ng P aki st an’s and/or India’s nuclear assets, o r
otherwise s eeking t o m ake t he regi on’s nuclear arsenals safer t hrough new initiatives ,
although s uch i nitiatives may conflict with U.S. treaty obligations and are opposed
by some proliferation analysts (see Technical Assistance section o f t his report above).
Regi onal Stability
The United S tates recognizes that geostrat egic and geopolitical stability in South
and S outhwest Asia are augm ented b y s trong U.S. ties with both India and Pakistan.
With New Del hi, t he Bush Administration s eeks t o i ncreas e t he scope and quality of
88 See, for e xample, t he sta t e me n t s o f Re p. Eni Faleoma vaega a nd Re p. Ga ry Ac ke rman,
“Transcript: Hearing of t he Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific of t he House International
Relations Committee,” Federal News Se rvice, March 20, 2003; C. Raj a Mohan, “A
Paradigm Shift T oward South Asia?,” Washington Quarterly 26, 1, Winter 2002-2003.
89 During a 2003 vi sit t o t he United States, Paki stani For e i gn Minister K asuri reportedly
requested gr eater access t o U.S. markets as a means of r educing poverty and t hus also the
forces of extremism i n Pakistan. He made a direct link between poverty and t he continued
existence of madrassas t hat are implicated i n teaching militant anti-American values
(“Paki stan: ‘ A Front-Line Ally’ on T errorism,” LosAngelesTimes, February 2, 2003).
90 See Raj esh Basrur and Hasan Askari-Ri zvi, “Nuclear T e r r o r i s m and South Asia,”
C o operative M onitoring Center Occasional Paper 25, Sandia National Laborator i e s ,
Albuquerque, N.M., February 2003.
engagement on a range of fronts, including high -technol o g y t r a d e , arms s ales, and
military-to-military relations. 91 With Islamabad, a somewhat m ore u t i litarian
approach focuses o n antiterrorism cooperatio n , ev en as President Bush vows t o
es tablish a multi-year package t hat would provide billions of dollars in U.S.
economic and military aid for the remainder o f t he current decade.92 In both S outh
Asian capitals, t he United S tates i s viewed by s om e a s an unreliable ally, s o t he
ex tent to which Indians and Pakistanis feel assured about long-term U.S. engagement
in the region will almost certainly affect their willingn ess t o cooperate on those i ssues
most important to U.S. policy m akers.
Fo r t hese reasons, and others, m any i n C ongress contin u e t o b e interested in
initiatives that affect the overall tenor of U.S. rel a t i o n s with India and/or Pakistan,
as well as the p rogress o f economic development and human righ ts promotion i n t he
regi on. Many o b s erv e rs believe that increas ed U.S. trade with and i nvestment in
India and Pakistan would enhance m ore s tabl e and pacific i nternational relations on
the S ubcontinent. Some em phasize the nee d for strong democratic institutions. A
m aj o r i ssue m ay be a m ore effect i v e U.S . rol e i n effort s t o resol ve what argu abl y i s
the s ingl e great es t t hrea t t o r egional s tability: continuing violence in the Kas hmir
regi on. From a b roader perspective, many ex perts b elieve improved U.S.-China and
India-China relations could d o m uch t o ensure a m ore t ranquil Asia i n coming years
In the n ew century——and especially after S eptember 2001——South Asia i s
no longer the “strategi c backwater” that it was for m a n y U . S . anal ys ts during t he
Cold W a r. The overt nuclear postures o f India and Pakistan, and U.S.-led
antiterrori sm efforts centered on S outhwes t Asia have m ade t he regi on’s s ecurity
dynamics a matter of great concern for the United S tates, where government offici al s
acknowledge t hat a stable and t hriving S outh Asia would a d v a n ce U.S. i nterests.
With regard to missile proliferation and South Asian security, m any appear sanguine
about the future: from t he perspective o f p ro liferation optimist s , t he establishment
of nuclear command and control m echanisms and t he deployment of reliable ballistic
missile capabilities on both sides is s een to contribute t o crisis stability through
mutual deterrence, and t hus to decrease t he likelihood of a fourth f u l l - s c a l e India-
However, proliferat i o n pessimism c ontinues among many. S ome years ago,
t h en-Deput y S ecret ary o f S t at e S t r o b e Talbott warned t hat, “Unless India and
Pakistan ex ercis e genuine restraint and great care, the [ nuclear weapons] d elivery
systems t hemselves could b ecome a s ource of tension and could b y t heir nature and
91 Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia Christina Rocca, “T ranscript: Hearing of t he
Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific of t he House In t ernational Relations Committee,”
Federal News Servi ce, March 20, 2003; “State’s Rocca Discu s s e s Promoting U.S.-India
Cooperation,” U.S. Departme nt of Stat e Washington File, September 11, 2003.
92 “T ranscript: Bush-M usharraf T alks Focus on Security and Economic E x p a n s i on,” U.S.
Departme nt of State Washington File, J une 24, 2003.
disposition i ncreas e t he incentive t o attack first i n a crisis.”93 Unlike aircraft, ballistic
missiles cannot be recalled after launch and, gi ven t he contiguity of the t wo
countries, missiles afford little time for warning and p ro t ect ive m easures. S o l ong
as terrorism- and Kashmir-related animos ity ex ists betwe e n India and P akistan,
making the outbreak of war a substantive risk, the continued proliferation of s trat egic
arsenals in South Asia cannot be viewed with compl acen ce. Among the future
devel opm ent s t h at coul d ex acerbat e regi onal t ensi ons are t he i n creased i n fl uence o f
H i ndu nationalism i n New Delhi and/or th e i ncreased influence o f Isl a m i c
fundamentalism i n Islamabad. M oreove r , m any analys ts are concerned t hat
continued military rule in Pakistan will hamper efforts at regional entente.
In t h e n ear t erm , t wo i ssues appear key t o S out h Asi an securi t y or i t s absence:
(1) ongoing violence in the Kashmir regi on and P akistani support for or tolerance o f
Is lamic terrorist groups operating from t erritory under its control; and (2) Afgh ani
instability and ongoing conflict along the P akistan-Afgh an istan border. Trends in
thes e areas are difficult to determine, but significant violence has continued i n both
t h eat ers. In t h e m i ddl e and l onger t erm , d evel opm ent s i n four areas appear di rect l y
relevant: (1) the course of India-China relations and s trategic posturing; (2) the ex t ent
of positive U.S. engagement with both India and Pakistan; 3 ) New Delhi’s weapons
procurement d ecisions; and 4) the possible deploym ent of missile defense s ys tems.
Here trends appear to be mix ed : New Del h i a n d Beijing h av e m oved t oward m ore
peaceful rel at i ons, and t h e Uni t ed S t at es i s rem ai ni ng ful l y engaged w i t h bot h o f
South Asia’s l argest countries . Yet India’s energetic acquisition o f s ophisticated new
w e apons platforms and pursuit of missile defense s ys tems may bode poorly f o r
regional stability. Moreover, within each of t h ese areas, t he progress and s cope of
regi onal m i ssi l e prol i ferat i o n represent s a cruci al and i n t e r a ct i v e facet . T he
importance of U.S. policies t o w ard S outh Asia i s difficult to deny. Missile
proliferation a n d its implications for S outh Asian security are worthy of careful
monitoring in the future.
93 Deputy Secretary [ of State] St robe Talbott, “U.S. Diplomacy in South Asia: A Progr ess
Report,” U.S. Department of State Dispatch, December 16, 1998.
Appendix A. M issile Programs
Some ex p e rt s believe that India’s ballistic missile program i s m otivat ed
primarily by a d esire for political and t echnol ogical prestige, and t o a lesser ex t ent,
strategi c military considerations towards P akistan and China. 94 Indi a’s p rogram i s
considered to be one of the m ost ambitious missil e p r o gr a m s in the developing
world, capable of producing missiles wit h r a n ge s e q u al to those d eployed b y t he
ori gi n al fi ve nucl ear powers (Uni t ed S t at es, R u ssi a, C h i n a, Engl and, and France).
Many anal ys ts consider India’s ballistic missile program a derivative of i t s s pace
program which is rated b y s ome as o ne of the m ost advanced programs among
emergi ng missile nations. S ome ex p erts cl a i m t h a t India’s s pace launch v ehicles
constitute an intercontinental ballistic missi l e (IC B M) capability but others argue
that, although conversion o f s pace launch v eh icles i nto ICBMs is possible, India does
not have a s ecurity requirement that would n ecessitate such an undertaking.
India l aunched its first s atellite in 1975 atop a S oviet rocket and b y 1980 was
abl e t o l aunch a sm al l s pacecraft i nt o o rbi t usi n g i t s own dom est i cal l y-produ ced
SLV-3space launchvehicle.95 The Indi an Defense R esearch and Devel opm ent
Organization (DRDO) es tablished t he Integrat ed Guided Missile Development
Program i n 1983 under t he direction o f Abdul Kalam t o develop ballistic missiles.
Most likely i n anticipation of t he adoption of t he Missile Technology C ontrol R egime
(MTCR) by a number o f k ey supplier countri es, India went o n what was described
by some analys ts as a “shopping spree” for gyroscopes, accelerometers, and m otion
simulators from s u p p l i e rs in the United S tates, Germany, France, and S weden.96
Many analys ts cite this foresight in obtaining high quality foreign missile components
and s ubsequent reverse engineering b y Indi an engi neers as a key fact or whi ch h as
enabled India’s missile program t o become virtually self-suffi ci ent. This self-
suffici ency permits India t o avoid i nternational ex port control res trictions as well as
inherent difficulties t hat could arise with ex tensive foreign involvement in its missile
India has developed t wo ballistic m i s s i l es, the s hort range Prithvi and t he
medium range Agn i.97
94 In formation i n t his paragraph is from Ben Shepard, “India and Paki stan - A T ale of T wo
Processes,” Jane’s Ballistic Missile Proliferation, March 2000, p. 11-1.
95 J i m Hackett,”The Ballistic Missile Threat: India and Paki stan,” Center for Defense and
International Security Studies, August 1996, p. 1.
96 M.V . Rama na and A.H. Nayya r,”India, Paki stan and t he Bomb,” Scientific American,
December 16, 2001, p. 3.
97 Ballistic mi ssiles are classified by range as f ollows:
Short Range Ballistic Missiles ( SRBMs) = 150 - 799 kms or 93 - 496 miles.
Medium Range Ballistic Missiles ( MRBMs) = 800 - 2,399 kms or 497 - 1,490 miles.
Intermediate Range Ballistic Missiles ( IRBMs) = 2,400 - 5,499 kms or 1,491 - 3,417
Table 1. Indian Ballistic M issiles
M issile Range Payload CEP98 Estima ted
Prithvi I 40-150 km 800 kg 50 m 130
Prithvi II 40-250 km 500-750 kg 75 m 70
Prithvi III 40-350 km 500-750 kg unkno wn unkno wn
D ha nush99 40-250 km 500-750 kg 75 m 70
Agni I 2 ,500 km 1,000 kg 100 m 5 -9
Agni II 3,000-3,500 km 1,000 kg 100 m 1 -2
Agni I I I 5 , 0 0 0 km unkno wn unkno wn 2
So ur ce: I nfo r matio n in this tab le is fr o m Jane’s Stra tegic Weapons Systems, Issue 37, July 2002, pp.
80-84 and “Agni - I nd i a M i s s i l e Special W eapons Delivery Systems,” Federation o f American
Scientists, J une 19, 2003, available a t [ http://www. f a s . o r g / nuke / gui d e / i nd i a / mi ssi l e / a gni . ht m] .
Prithvi I . The P rithvi I, like all Pri t h v i v ariants, i s a single-staged, liquid100
propellant , s ingl e warhead short-range ballistic missile. T h e Prithvi I i s used
ex cl usi v el y b y t he Indi an Arm y and i s report ed t o h ave h i gh ex p l o si ve (HE)
penetration, submunitions (incendiary a n d a n ti-personnel/anti-armor), and fuel air
ex plosive and possi bl y chem i cal warheads. 101 Fo llowing Indian nuclear tests i n 1998,
some ex perts b elieve that India d eveloped a number o f s mall yi eld nuclear warheads
for t he Prithvi I with 1, 5, 12 or 20 KT yi el ds with the warhead weight es timated at
about 250 kg. First test fired i n February 1988, India h as conducted 1 6 known l aunch
tests o f t he Prithvi series as of March 2003. 102 In service with the army s ince 1994,
Intercontinental Range Ballisti c M i s s i l e s ( ICBMs) = 5,500 kms or 3,418 miles and
98 CEP i s defined as the r adius of a circle centered at t he target within which 50 % of all
mi ssiles aimed at the t arget would be expected to impact and i s t he standard for measuring
accuracy for missiles and bombs.
99 T he Dhanush i s essentially the Indian Navy’ s s hip- launched version of the Prithvi II and
has been under development s ince 1983. T he f irst test of the Dhanush r eportedly r esulted
in failure 30 seconds after its launch from an Indian offshore patrol vessel anchored in the
Bay of Benga l, where t he mi ssile was l aunched from t he ship’s reinforced, hydraulically-
stabilized helicopter deck which had been converted i nto a launch platform.
100 Solid propellants are generally favored as t hey are safer t o store and easier and quicker
t o p u t i nto action t han liquid propellant-f illed missiles. Countries that produce solid
propellant mi ssiles are generally considered to have a more t echnologicall y-a dvanced
mi ssile program t han t hose countries who produce s trictly liquid propellant mi ssiles.
101 Information on t he Pr ithvi I i s from Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems,p.84.
102 Zahid Hussain, “ Missile T ests Raise Indo-Paki stan Fears,” Ti mes Online, March 27,
the P rithvi I i s believed capable of s t ri k i n g approx imately a quarter of Pakistan,
incl uding Is lamabad and other m aj or cities.103
Prithvi II. Prithvi II missiles ar e r e portedly u sed b y t he Indian Air Force to
attack enemy airfields and t o s upport t he Indian Army on the b attlefi el d . S o m e
ex perts b elieve that efforts are underway to adapt t he full range o f P rithvi I warheads104
for P rithvi II use. Fi rst t e s t fired in J anuary 1996, the P rithvi II is assessed t o b e
capable of hitting almost half of Pakistan incl uding almost al l critical military target s105
and all major cities.
Prithvi III. The P r i t h v i III is currently under d evelopment and is not yet
believed t o b e operational. It is believed t o h ave a range of 350 km and a payl oad o f
750 kg and m ay als o h a v e either a n ew liquid o r s olid propulsion system. S ome
reports suggest that India m ay install a Global P ositioning System (GPS) gu idance
system that could reduce t he missile’s CEP t o 2 5 m .
Agni I. The Agni I is a t wo-staged, intermediate-range, single warhead ballistic
missile. The Agni I i s believed t o have a minimum range of 500 km and a max imum
range o f 2,500 km with a C EP of 100 m. Some ana l ys t s believe that India h as
developed a 45 KT nuclear warhead for t he Agni I and possibly a 200 KT warhead.
The Agni I h a s a separating reentry vehicle (RV) that reportedly has an altitude
contr o l s ys tem and aerodynamic maneuver fins d esigned t o m ake i ntercept from
ballistic missile defenses more difficult. T h e Agn i I, considered a t echnology
demonstrator and not a d e v e l o p e d weapons system by the Indian government, h as
undergone three t est flights b etween 1994 and 2002.
Agni II. The Agn i II h as two s olid propellant stages and s ome ex p erts believe
that it has a minimum range of 500 km and a max imum range of 3,000 to 3,5000 km.
The Agn i II i s b eliev e d t o h ave a 100 m C EP and a separating 200 KT nuclear
warhead weighing approx imately 500 kg. The Agni II was first test launched i n April
1999. Some anal ys t s s u ggest that a s mall num ber o f Agn i II missiles (fewer t han
five) h ave b een operationally available s ince late 2000 and t hat t he annual p roduction
rate since t hen has been from 15 t o 20 missiles. The Agni II’ s r an ge p e rmits it to
strike all o f P akistan and deep into western portions of China. 106
Agni III. The Agn i III is believed t o h ave a range of 5,000 k m ( a range o f
approx imately 4,000 km would be required for a missile to reach Beijing from India)
103 “Prithvi - India M issile Special Weapons Delivery S ys tems ,” Federation of Ame rican
Scientists, J une 19, 2003., available a t
[ h t t p : / / www.f a s .or g/ nuke / gu i d e / i ndi a / mi s s i l e / p r i t h vi .ht m] .
104 Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems,p.83.
105 “Prithvi - India M issile Special W eapons Delivery S ys tems,” available at
[ h ttp://www.fas.org/ nuke/guide/india/missile/prithvi.htm ].
106 “Agni - India M issile Special Weapons Delivery Sys tems , Federa t i o n o f American
Sc i e nt i s t s ,” a va i l a bl e a t [ ht t p : / / www.f a s .or g/ nuke / gu i d e / i ndi a / mi s s i l e / a gn i .ht m] .
and i s p resently assessed t o b e under d evelopment.107 Senior Indian defense o fficials
reportedly claim that the Agni III is a “China-speci fic” missile and not intended for
use against Pakistan.108 The Times of India claims that the Agni III will be both rai l
and road-mobile with a new inertial guidance s ys tem and will be able to “deliver a
one-tonne warhead beyond the range of combat aircraft.” The Agn i III may h ave
three s tages and some anal ys ts speculate that the first and s econd stages may be s olid
propellant stages and t he third s tage e i t h e r liquid or s olid propellant.109 India h as
claimed t hat t he Agni III would o n l y b e u sed t o d eliver conventional warheads but
with a reported cost of 4.5 to 8 million U.S. dollars per missile, s ome ex perts find
it difficult to imagi ne that the cost of such a missile could be j ustified unless i t was
used to deliver nuclear weapons. 110
Submarine Launched Ballis tic Missiles (SLBMs). Accordi n g t o s om e
U.S. intelligence sources, India i s devel oping a submarine l aunched ballistic missile111
(SLBM) known as t he Sagarika which coul d b e operational s ometime after 2010.
India reportedly i s s eeking a nuclear triad (mi ssiles, aircraft, and sea b ased) t o i nsure112
that at least s ome o f t he country’s nuclear weapons survive a first strike attack. It
is unclear if the S agarika i s i ntended t o be deployed on a modified Russian Kilo-class
subm ari n e o r a R u ssi an Akul a-cl ass s ubm ari n e, whi ch i s b el i eved capabl e of fi ri ng
only cruise missiles, or India’s Advance Technology Vessel, a nuclear submarine t hat113
has b een under d evelopment with Russian assistance since 1985.
Russian Involvement i n I ndi a ’ s Missile Program. Reportedly, more
than two t hirds of India’s military equipment i s from R u s s i a or t he former Soviet
Union and some anal ys ts believe that India will purchas e an additional 8 billion U.S.
dollars worth o f military items from R ussia i n t he decade t o come. 114 W h i l e speci fi cs
are not readi l y avai l abl e, som e anal ys t s uggest t h at i t i s a reasonabl e assum p t i o n —
although India’s missile program i s considered largely s elf-suffi cient — t h a t India
will continue to acquire some missile co mponents and other missile-related
technology from R ussia.
107 Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems, p. 82.
108 “ In d i a - Agni III Reportedly Developed t o Counter China,” Periscope Daily Defense
Ne ws , J a nuary 21, 2003.
109 R a j a t Pandit,”Agni III T e st Like ly by Year End,” Times of I ndia (Delhi), J anuary 12,
110 “Agni - India M issile Special Weapons Delivery Sys tems ,” F e d e r a t i on of American
111 “Ballistic and Cruise Missile Threat,” U. S. Ai r F o r c e National Air and Space
Intelligence Center, Wright-Patterson Ai r Force Base, Ohio, February 2003, p. 18.
112 “Indian Na vy Says Sea-Ba sed Nuke Arsenal Necessary,” Reut ers Ne w s , De cember 2,
113 “India’s Nuclear Forces,” Bulletin of the Atomi c Scientists, p. 3.
114 “Putin Br ings Offer of Nuclear-T ipped Arms Deal to India,” Indepen d e n t ( L o n d on),
BrahMos Cruise Missile. India and Russia reportedly are jointly developing
the BrahMos anti-ship cruise missile. The BrahMos, which i s not pres ently assessed
to be nuclear-capable, h as a reported range of 185 miles, a p ayload of 440 pounds,
and a speed of more than 1,400 miles p er hour. 115 The BrahMos is sign ificant i n t hat
it is considered by many anal ysts to be a state-of-the-art m i s sile which t ravels at
supersonic s peed (it i s abo ut 3 times fas ter t han t he current U.S. Tomahawk cruise
missile) and has b een built with stealth technology which, according t o s ome ex p erts,
could m a k e i t virtually impossible t o i nt ercept. Bo th countries reportedly p lan t o
deploy the BrahMos with their armed forces as wel l as ex port t he BrahMos t o t hi rd
world c ountries, possibly t o o ffset U.S. military capabilities. According t o Global
S ecuri t y.org, t h e t wo-st aged BrahMos, w hi ch can b e fi red from ai r, l and, and s ea,
coul d b e m odi fi ed t o accom m odat e a s m al l nucl ear wa r h e a d , a ddi ng anot her
operational capability to India’s nuclear missile arsenal. While India and Russia have
publically stat ed thei r i n t en t i o ns to deploy the BrahMos to thei r res pective armed
f o r ces by the end of 2003, some military officials b elieve that they are s till s e v e r a l
years away from deployi ng the missile. 116
Many analys ts consider Pakistan’s ballistic missile p r ogram t o be a response
to India’s ballistic missiles, its sophisticated air d efense system, and India’s l arge and117
well-equipped armed forces. S o m e ex pert s f e el t hat rel at i v el y rapi d advances i n
Pakistan’s missile program are a res ult of competition bet w e en Samar M ubarak
Mund of the National Development C omplex , responsible for s olid-fuel missiles and
Abdul Qadeer Khan of the Khan R esearch Laboratories where liquid-fueled missiles
are produced. Des pite thes e t wo competing organizations, P akistan relies heavily on
Nort h K orean, C hi nese, and, t o a l esser d egree, Irani an assi st ance i n i t s m i ssi l e118
P rior t o 1989, Pakistan’s missile arsenal was comprised p rimarily of Hat f I
rocket s 119 an d H a t f II missiles with ranges of 80 and 280 km, respectively. India’s
1989 launch of its Agni I missile, i n conjunction with the U.S. denial of delivery of
F-16 aircraft 12 0 t o P aki st an, i s credi t ed b y m any ex p ert s as cent ral event s t h at
compelled Islam abad to pursue ballistic missiles as P akistan’s primary means t o
deliver nuclear weapons. In 1992, P akistan allegedly received M -11 missiles from
115 Neelesh Mis r a , “ In d i a T est Fires a Missile That Could Hit Paki stani Cities,”
Philadelphia Enquirer, February 13, 2003.
116 Information on t he BrahMos deployment i s from “ PJ -10 BrahMos,” GlobalSecurity.org,
available at [ http:// www.gl obalsecurity.org/ military/world/india/BrahMos.htm] .
117 Information i n t his section o n Pakistan’s missile program i s t aken from “India and
Paki stan - A T a le of T wo Processes,” p. 11-1.
118 Cordesma n, pp. 102-105.
119 Rockets differ from missiles i n t hat t hey do not have guidance systems and are r eliant
on their l aunch t raj ectory i n order to strike their i ntended t arget.
120 F-16s were considered by ma ny analys ts as Paki stan’s primary nuclear weapons delivery
means i n t he late 1980s - early 1990s.
C h i n a w hi ch are capabl e of carryi n g nucl ear warheads t o a range o f approx i m at el y
300 km. S ince this acquisition i n 1992, much of Pakistan’s missile program h as been
devoted to the devel opment of t he Shaheen and Ghauri-series of ballistic missiles.
Table 2. Pakistani B allistic M issiles
M issile Ra ng e Payload CEP Estimated
H a t f I 6 0 - 1 0 0 km 1 0 0 - 5 0 0 kg unkno wn 8 0
Hatf II 280 - 450 km 300 - 500kg 200m unkno wn
M-11 300 km 500 kg 600 m 3 0 - 84
Shaheen I 600 km 750 kg 200 m 5 - 1 0
Shaheen II 2,500 km 750 kg 350 m 5 - 1 0
Ghauri I 1 ,500 km 760 kg 2,500 m 5 - 1 0
G ha ur i I I 1 , 8 0 0 - 2 , 3 0 0 km 7 6 0 kg unkno wn unkno wn
So ur ce: I nfo r matio n in this tab le is fr o m Jane’s Stra tegic Weapons Systems, Issue 37, July 2002, pp.
Ha tf I. The Hat f I is believed t o be a s ingl e-stage, solid propellant rocket with
a 6 0 t o 8 0 k m range carrying a 500 kg payl oad o r a 350 km range carrying a 100 kg121
payl oad. Some anal ysts speculate that the limited range and payload capacity of
t h ese rocket s woul d p recl ude t h e u se of a nucl ear warhead and m ore l i k el y p ayl o ads122
include high ex plosives, s ubmuniti ons, and possibly chemical weapons. The Hatf
I’s accuracy is unknown and P akistan may h ave as m any o f 8 0 o f t hese rockets.123
Hatf II. T h e Hatf II i s a two-stage, solid propellant missile of 280 km range
with a 500 kg payl oad o r a 450 km range with a 3 0 0 kg payl oad.124 The Hatf II
program i s believed t o have been terminated due to technical problems but some
anal ysts speculate that in addition t o high ex plosive and chemical payl oads, t hat t he125
Hat f II was i nt ended t o carry a nucl ear warhead.
121 “Hatf-I - Pakistan M issile Special Weapons Delivery Sys tems ,” Federation of Ame rican
Scientists, avai l a bl e a t [ ht t p : / / www.f a s.or g/ nuke/ gui de/ paki st an/ mi ssi l e / hat f -1.ht m] .
122 Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems, p. 124.
123 “T he Military Ba lance 2002-2003,” The I nternational Institute for Strategic Studies,
London, U.K . , p . 133.
124 “Hatf-II - Pakistan M issile Special Weapons Delivery Sys tems ,” Federation of Ame rican
Scientists, J une 19, 2003, available a t
[ ht t p: / / www.f a s.or g/ nuke/ gui de/ paki st an/ mi ssi l e / hat f -2.ht m] .
125 Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems, p. 125.
M-11. In 1992, China reportedly d elivered to Pakistan between 30 and 8 4
unassembled M -11 missiles with a 300 km range and a 500 kg payl oad capacity.126
The M -11’s s eparat i n g w arhead i s cons i d e r e d b y many ex perts as a desirable
char act er istic for nuclear weapons delivery, but limited range precludes its use t o127
strike New Delhi or large population centers lying b eyond the Indian Desert. The
M-11 is a road-mobile, s olid propellant missile with a 600 m C EP that , i n addition
t o hi gh e x p l o s i v e, sub m uni t i on, and chem i cal warheads, can possi bl y d el i v er a
variety o f nuclear warheads with 2, 10, or 20 KT yi elds.128 It is possible t hat M -11s
may b e fitted with GPS t echnology t o i ncrease t heir accuracy.
Shaheen I. The S haheen I i s a solid propellant, s ingl e warhead missile
reportedly d eveloped b y Dr. Samar M ubarak M und’s National Development
C o m p l ex . Many anal ys t s consi d er t h e S haheen I a scal ed-up v ersi on of t h e C hi nese
M-11 m i ssi l e. T he S h aheen I h as a report ed range of 600 km , an accuracy of 200 m ,
and can carry a 750 kg, 3 5 K T n u c l ear warhead or conventional o r chemical
m uni t i ons. Because l aunch p reparat i ons for t he sol i d -fuel ed, road-m obi l e S h aheen
I are relativel y s hort, the missile reportedly can be launched within 5 t o 10 minutes
of its arrival at a pre-surveyed launch s ite. S ome analysts s peculate that Pakistan may
have had from 5 to 10 Shaheen Is available for testing and operational u se by the end
of 1999 and m ore m ay have been produced since t hen.
Shaheen II. T h e S h aheen II is a road-mobile, t wo-stage, s olid propellant
ballistic missile al so developed by Pakistan’s National Devel opment C omplex . Many129
anal ysts speculate that the S haheen II is based on t he Chinese M-18 missile. The
Shaheen II reportedly h as a 2,500 km range, a 350 m C EP, and can carry a 750 kg 15
t o 35 KT nucl ear warhead, as w el l as h i gh ex plosives, submunitions, chemical, and
fuel -ai r ex pl osi v es. 130 T h e S h a h e e n II i s al so bel i eved t o h ave a s eparat i n g reent ry
vehicle and its accuracy may b e enhanced through t he use o f GP S technology. The
Shaheen II was first publically displayed i n M arch 2000 and i t i s not believed t o h ave
been flight tested to date. S ome ex perts speculate that Pakistan may have produced
from 5 t o 10 S h aheen IIs .
Ghauri I. The Ghauri - s e r i e s of road-mobile, liquid propellant missiles are
produced i n P aki st an’s Khan R esearch Laborat ori es. 131 Many anal ys ts believe that
the Ghauri I is based o n North Korea’s No Dong I and II missile. R eports that Iran’s
126 For a discussion of various reports and i nter pretations of this event, see CRS Re p o r t
127 “ H a t f -III/ S h a h e e n - I / M -1 1 - P a k i s t a n M i s s i l e S p e c i a l Weapons Delivery Sys tems ,”
Federation of American Scientists, J une 19, 2003, available a t
[ ht t p: / / www.f a s.or g/ nuke/ gui de/ paki st an/ mi ssi l e / hat f -3.ht m] .
128 Discussion of the M -11’s nuclear warheads a nd the Shaheen I i s t aken from J a n e ’ s
Strategi c Weapons Systems, pp. 84-130.
129 “ S h a h e e n -II/ H a t f -6 / G h a z n a v i - P a k i s t a n M i s s i l e S p e c i a l Weapons Delivery Sys tems ,”
Federation of American Scientists, available at
[ ht t p: / / www.f a s.or g/ nuke/ gui de/ paki st an/ mi ssi l e / s haheen-2.ht m] .
130 Information on t he Shaheen II is from Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems, p. 131.
131 India a nd Paki stan - A T a le of T wo Processes, p. 11-3.
Shahab III missile ap pears t o be very similar i n design t o t he Ghauri I have l ed to
widespread speculation by i ntelligence offici al s t hat P akistan, North Korea, and Iran
have col l aborat ed i n t h e d evel opm ent o f t hese m i ssi l es. 132 The Ghauri I is believed
to have a range of 1,500 km, and accuracy of 2,500 m, and could d eliver a 760 kg 15
t o 35 KT nucl ear warhead whi ch P aki s t an h as al l eged t o h ave t est ed i n M a y 1 9 98.
The Ghauri I is believed t o h ave b een operationally deployed in late 1998 by
Pakistan’s 47 th Artillery Brigad e w i t h 5-10 missiles available for testing or
Ghauri II. The Ghauri II i s b elieved t o b e a l engt hened and improved v ersion
of the Ghauri I, possi bly employi ng new p ropellants and a m otor assembly. The
Ghauri II’s accuracy is unknown b u t i t s r a nge i s b elieved t o b e b etween 1,800 to
2,300 km and could also accommodate a 1 5 t o 3 5 K T nuclear warhead as well as the
full range o f warheads available for the Ghauri I. A Ghauri III m i s s ile has b een
reported t o b e i n d evelopment with a possible 3,000 km range and motor t ests for t his
missile were believed t o h ave t aken place in J u ly and S eptember 1999.
Foreign Involvement i n P akistan’s Mi ssile Program. A February 2000
report from t he Central Intelligence Agency cited C hinese and No r th Korean
assistance as “critical for Islamabad’s efforts t o p roduce b allistic missiles.”133 Some
analys ts suggest that China m ay have been heavily involved i n t he development o f
the S haheen I. A 1999 U.S. intelligence report alleges t hat C hina transferred d esigns
for a missile fact ory t o P akistan and this fact ory i s currently being used t o prod uce
S h aheen I m i ssi l es. 134 A J uly 2000 report from t he U.S. intelligence community stat ed
t h at C h i n a h ad st epped u p i t s shi p m ent s o f s peci al t y st eel s, gu i d ance syst em s, and
t echni cal ex pert i s e t o P aki s t an. 135 P r es s r eports, citing a J anuary 2003 Central
In telligence Agency report t o C ongress on Weapons Technology, claim t hat C hina
also assisted Pakistan in developing the S haheen II and possibly nuclear weapons. 136
Pakis t an is believed t o h ave s tarted development o f t he Ghauri I i n 1993 with
Nort h Korean assi st ance. 137 Ex perts believe that the Ghauri I is essentially a North
Korean No Dong missile. India’s i nterception i n J une, 1999 of a s hip carrying a large
amount of missile technology from North Korea t o P akistan h as raised the i ssue t hat
North Korean missile technology m ay be able to help Pakistan achieve ranges out to
8,000 km.138 There i s also evidence t hat P akistan i s reci procating and assisting North
Korea i n i t s m i s s i l e program . P aki st an has b een accused o f p rovi di ng Nort h Korea
132 Discussions on the Ghauri I and II are taken from Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems,p.
133 Cordesma n, p. 103.
136 “CIA Says Chinese Entities Helped Pak in Nuke Weapon Production,” Organisation of
Asia-Pacific News Agencies, J anuary 8, 2003.
137 Cordesma n, p. 103.
138 Information on North Korean involvement i s from India and Paki stan - A Tale of Two
Processes, p. 11-4.
with test data from Ghauri t es t flights for its use i n improving its No Dong missiles
despite North Korea’s s elf-imposed 1999 moratorium on long range missile test
flights.139 Som e e x p erts h ave also s uggested that Pakistan is providing valuable
solid-fuel propulsion technology from its Chinese-based S haheen missiles for North
Korea’s u se in the Taepo Dong missile p r o g r a m. In 1993, Pakistani and Iranian
speci alists were alleged t o have t raveled t o North Korea t o observe the l aunch of a
No Dong and t hree SCUD missiles. 140 Some suggest that Pakistani-Iranian missile
cooperati on has d eteriorated. Amin Tarzi, writing for the M onterey Institute of
In t ernat i onal S t udi es i n C al i forni a, cl ai m s t h at t h e rel at i onshi p h as l essened b ecause
o f reported anti-Shiite activities i n P akistan and Islamabad’s policies t oward s
Afgh ani s t an rel at ed t o t h e U .S . w ar on t error i n t he regi on. 141
139 Cordesma n, pp. 102-105.
140 J oseph S. Bermudez J r., “ DPRK -Pakistan Ghauri M issile Cooperation,” Ballistic Missile
Development i n t he Third World, May 21, 1998, p. 2.
141 Amin T arzi, “Iran’s Missile T est Sends Mixed Messages,” Center for Nonproliferation
Studies Reports - M onterey Institute of International Studies, August 15, 2000, p. 2.
Figure 1 . Map of South Asia
Ad a p t e d b y CRS fr o m M a ge l l a n G e o gr a p hi x. B o und a r y r e p r e se nt a t i o ns no t a ut ho r i t a t i ve .