Iran Deals Features Defense Backstop

Iran Deal Features Defense Backstop
Ash Carter

Nineteen years ago, I was in Ukraine when the last nuclear warheads, orphaned during the Soviet Union’s breakup, rolled out of the country. As an assistant secretary of Defense at the time, I had worked with Washington colleagues and foreign counterparts to eliminate those nuclear weapons and thus one danger at the dawn of the post-Cold War world. Together — with bipartisan support in Congress led by Sens. Sam Nunn, a Democrat, and Richard Lugar, a Republican — we succeeded.
Today, the Iran deal provides the opportunity to address an even greater nuclear threat. Congress should support it because, once implemented, the deal will remove a critical source of risk and uncertainty in a vitally important but tumultuous region. Indeed, the deal is best seen as a part of our broader strategic approach to the Middle East, which aims to defend American interests, protect our friends, especially Israel, and confront the region’s two principal security challenges, the Islamic State terrorist group and Iran.
On Iran, the deal will prevent that nation from getting a nuclear weapon in a comprehensive and verifiable way. Its implementation will block the pathways Iran could take to build a nuclear bomb. That long-term outcome is more durable than one a military strike would bring about. While I am responsible for that alternative and know that it would be effective at setting back Iran’s nuclear program, it would do so with potentially serious second- and third-order repercussions, and the likely need to repeat attacks once Iran sought to rebuild its capability.
The military option is real today and, as secretary of Defense, I will be sure that remains true well into the future. Iran might walk away from the deal or cheat, which are risks in any negotiated deal. But, unlike the arms control deals of the Cold War, nothing in the Iran deal constrains the U.S. Defense Department in any way or its ability to carry out such a mission.
Indeed, the reality is that any prospective military option, if called for, will be more effective under this deal — not less. Iran will have a smaller and more concentrated civil nuclear program, and the deal’s verification provisions will give us more information with which to plan.
No one is saying this deal will fix every problem with Iran or in the Middle East. While it removes the greatest danger — Iran with a nuclear weapon — the deal does not address Iran’s extensive malign activities in the region. But because the deal places no limits whatsoever on the United States military, it will not hinder America’s strategic approach to the region or our military’s important work to check those destabilizing activities and stand by our friends in the Middle East.
Indeed, as I told some of the more than 35,000 American troops in the region when I visited last month, the United States military will remain “full speed ahead.” We’re deterring regional threats, maintaining a robust military posture — including our most sophisticated ground, maritime, and air and ballistic missile defense assets, as well as the ability to quickly surge overwhelming additional forces — and continuing to increase our cooperation with Israel and our Persian Gulf partners in meaningful ways.
For example, to maintain Israel’s qualitative military edge, the United States has made available its most advanced capabilities, such as the stealthy F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Following President Obama’s Camp David meeting with Gulf leaders in May, we have offered some of our Gulf partners sophisticated defense equipment, including the THAAD ballistic missile defense system, and help to improve their ground and special operations forces.
Deal or no deal all this work will continue, and, in fact, it will redouble. While getting nuclear weapons out of Ukraine resolved only one of many problems in the post Cold War era, it removed a serious danger from an unstable region at a time of great change.
And while Ukraine then is obviously different from Iran today, this deal gives us the unique chance to verifiably prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, removing a more urgent threat from an even more unstable and changing region. I learned then that the chance to remove a nuclear threat might not come back and should be seized.
Ash Carter is the 25th secretary of Defense of the United States.

Country Study

Regional Peace
Amna Ejaz Rafi
India-Pakistan peace talks have been cancelled. Indian reluctance to include Kashmir in the talks and the “precondition” that the Pakistani side would not consult the Kashmiri leadership were the reasons for the cancellation. Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swarajsaid that India would only discuss terrorism-related issues. India’s logic to avoid discussing Kashmir with Islamabad is absurd.
It is not acceptable for Pakistan to exclude Kashmir from the bilateral talks. Meanwhile, terrorism it is a major concern for Pakistan. As stated by National Security Advisor, Sartaj Aziz: “Pakistan is ready to give evidence of RAW’s involvement in terrorism in Pakistan”. This is the second time that the peace talks have been called off, last year in August, the Indo Pakistan foreign secretaries talks failed to materialize. India’s reliance on a coercive hegemonic doctrine, rather than an institutional one, has led to the failure of bilateral talks one after the other.
India’s image is that of a quarrelling neighbour. India has had confrontation with almost all of the neighbours at some point. It has never been able to establish harmony with the regional states. The brutal acts of suppression committed by the Indian Army in the Indian Held Kashmir (IHK) finds no parallel in modern history since the times of Nazi Germany. Kashmir, one of the loveliest places on earth is being tortured by ruthless terrorism of Indian Security Forces. India and Pakistan have fought wars over Kashmir. Still there is exchange of fire across the Line of Control (LoC).
Recently, Indian firing near the Sialkot Working Boundary injured 46 civilians, including 22 women. Kashmir is an internationally recognized issue; there are UN resolutions on Kashmir, which have
been deliberately sidelined. In line with the UN ‘Commission on Human Rights’ and ‘Universal Declaration on Human Rights’, human rights violation is an international crime. India cannot close its eyes on the anti-India protests and violations of human rights in Kashmir. The international community’s ignorance over Indian atrocities in IHK, violation across the LoC and Indian support to armed separatists in Baluchistan have in a way fortified unjust practices, and have added to the sufferings of humanity. The Indian sponsored insurgency in Sri Lanka is also an example of the bloodiest internal conflicts in South Asia. The violence that followed destroyed Sri-Lanka’s tourism based economy and caused a lot of bloodshed. Sri Lanka fought the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealem (LTTE) for nearly three decades. Among the regional states, Pakistan played an important role in restoring peace in Sri Lanka.
India also has a record of violating regional treaties. Regional states, in particular, Bangladesh and Pakistan have voiced concern over India’s violation of Farraka Barrage Treaty and the Indus Water
Treaty. India seems to be hugging the Cold War notion that its neighbours are its enemies and need to be put back in place as subordinate states. This Indian psyche is also prevalent on the cultural side. The Indian projection of the ‘Indus Valley Civilization’ as an Indian Saga is a display of hegemonic cultural onslaught. In actual, the Indus Valley Civilization grew and spread the world entirely from what is now Pakistan. The lingering political and territorial disputes in South Asia make the region the least integrated in the world. The regional grouping SAARC’s failure to emerge as unified trading bloc is due to the lack of coherence among the regional states. In the present era of globalization, conflict is not the order of the day rather economic prowess determines the standing of a regional actor in the comity of nations. To move forward, the regional states will have to change their outlook, and cooperative policies of regional connectivity, and energy cooperation would have to be followed.
The need is to think from a regional perspective, and together emerge on the world stage as a regional bloc. Therefore, a change in India’s hegemonic way of thinking and realization of the value of institutional cooperation would revitalize the SAARC and present the region to the world as an attractive trading bloc. The Chinese led ‘Economic Corridor’, linking Gwadar to Kashgar is a huge opportunity for the entire region. India and other countries short of energy could be supplied Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) through Gwadar.
—The write is Researcher, Islamabad Policy Research Institute.

Country Perception Division (CPD)

Country Perception Division (CPD)

Global & Regional Studies


After the emergence of information technology, some scholars called world as the global village, means now the whole world is now a single village. It is just like that concept where all people know everybody living in the village; it was only possible due information technology. Later on it also called as globalization in which many new concepts emerged like global peace, global governance, global environment and global terrorism. The study of these different events is called global studies of events which changed the world scenario. The region can be specific like Asia, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Eurasia. It may cover some specific events within the region and its impacts on region and world as well. Pakistan House is also conducting studies which change the world scenario like war on terrorism.