Total Pageviews

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Briefing By Solicitors International Human Rights Group (SIHRG) & Malaysian Human Rights NGO (SUARAM) on the Royal Malaysian Navy’s Scorpene Submarine Procurement Project

In December 2009, SUARAM filed an initial suit against X at the Paris court for “active and passive corruption, trading of favours and abuse of corporate assets”. The state prosecutor Jean-Claude Marin then opened a preliminary investigation. At the time, it was suspected that a bribe of 114 million euros had been paid by the company Armaris (a subsidiary of DCNI and Thalès) to the Malaysian Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Razak and his entourage, through the company Perimekar Sdn Bhd. This company, which was officially established to “coordinate” the sale of the three submarines, had Abdul Razak Baginda’s wife as its majority shareholder. However, in the suit filed in December 2009, the plaintiffs argued, that in light of the way the company operated: “There is no doubt that this legal entity [Perimekar] was created with a single goal: to organise the payment of commission and distribute the amount amongst the different beneficiaries--Malaysian officials and/or Malaysian or foreign intermediaries”. However, this contract was signed after the OECD Convention came into force in France in 2000, which punishes corruption of foreign public officials with ten years’ imprisonment and a 150,000 euro fine. Following this complaint, a preliminary investigation was conducted by French prosecution agencies. Hearings were conducted and searches were made at the premises of DCNS and THALES.  Revealed in September 2008, the notebooks of Gérard-Philippe Menayas, former chief financial officer of DCN, who was indicted in the Karachi case (involving the sale of three Agosta 90B SSKs to Pakistan), also confirm the suspicions of hidden commissions. In his memorandum, Menayas mentioned the Malaysian submarine contract as follows: “Since the entry into force of the OECD Convention regarding the fight against corruption in September 2000, only two contracts have been signed; the first with India, and the second with Malaysia in 2002. These two contracts are the result of commercial actions undertaken prior to the OECD Convention’s entry into force. Furthermore, they are both suspected of non-compliance with this Convention. I have evidence to support this”. At the time of the contract’s signature Alain Richard was France’s Minister of Defence, in Lionel Jospin’s government (socialist party). With the Malaysian indictment, and the revival of this case, new items have been contributed to the case by the plaintiffs. First, according to sources cited by the plaintiffs, it was not the company Armaris that paid 114 million euros to Perimekar, but rather the Govt of Malaysia, “with the sole purpose of circumventing the OECD Convention”. This is a true revelation, while the Malaysian Minister of Defence has since ended up ‘confessing’ to the payments made by foreign companies to Perimekar. Where did this money go? Were there retro-commissions to French politicians? Secondly, there does not appear to have been a single commission, but rather three. In addition to that of 114 million euros, there are two further installments:

• one paid by the DCNI to the commercial networks of THALES, for over 30 million euros, corresponding to “commercial fees relating to the negotiation and execution of the contract”;
• the other for 2.5 million euros.

However, according to Gerard Philippe Menayas: “Until the OECD Convention against corruption came into force in France, no contract for the sale of defence equipment to an emerging country could take place without the payment of commissions to policy makers (euphemistically called “commercial fees for exports” or ‘FCE’)”. The second commission was paid by THALES to a recipient, who remains unknown, in order to convince the Malaysian government of the need to conduct additional work. Finally, according to the complaint filed by the firm Bourdon, SUARAM’s lawyer, the company GIFEN, which was established by Jean-Marie Boivin in Malta, intervened in the negotiations “so as to facilitate the money transfers in this case,” and particularly finance the trips of Abdul Razak Baginda and Altantuya Sharribuu. The ‘catch’ is that Jean-Marie Boivin is also cited in the Karachi case... for his role in the system for supplying slush funds to political parties.

Chronology Of Events
June 5, 2002: Malaysian government signed an agreement with French DCNS and Spainish Navantia for the procurement of two (2) Scorpene-class submarines. The procurement contract was through direct negotiation with the manufacturing companies, said to be with the service of Perimekar Sdn Bhd. According to the Government explanation, the contract was divided into two parts:
a. Cost of two Scorpene SSKs together with the package that covers Integrated Logistic Support and training amounted to Euro 969.15 million (however on May 14, 2008, then Defence Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Razak told the Parliament that this part cost Euro 999.15 million).
b. Payment to Perimekar Sdn Bhd in the name of “coordination services” for a period of six years, the sum was Euro 114.96 million. It is widely believed that payment for the second package was in reality the commission for Najib/Rosmah through Abdul Razak Baginda as the owner of Perimekar. With the exchange rate at the time, the cost was equivalent to:
1) Payment for submarine cost between: RM2.14 billion (Euro=RM3.2 in 2002) – RM5.43 billion (Euro=RM5.6 in 2008) (now Euro=RM4.7)
2) Commissions: probably about RM540 million (exchange rate at the time of payment)

July 26, 2006: The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) announced that these vessels will be named after the first and second prime ministers. The first hull will be named KD Tunku Abdul Rahman and the second hull KD Tun Razak.

October 24, 2007: The first vessel, KD Tunku Abdul Rahman, was launched by then Defence Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib on at the DCNS dockyard, Cherbourg, France. (According to Sharribuu, Altantuya was in France with Najib during the launch).

September 3, 2009: The first Scorpene SSK, KD Tunku Abdul Rahman, arrived at a Port Klang naval base after a 54-day voyage from France. The second of the series, KD Tun Razak, was scheduled for delivery in late 2009. However it only arrived in mid-2010.

February 10, 2009: It was reported that KD Tunku Abdul Rahman could not dive due to technical faults. RMN sources admitted that the defect had prevented it from diving for three months. However the Govt of Malaysia claimed that the problem was fixed in early February and it was allowed to undergo tropical water trial since then. As a result, submarine builder DCNS extended the warranty for the submarine, which was supposed to expire on January 25, 2010, until May 2010 so the submarine could complete its trials as the first step to obtaining its Initial Operational Capability (IOC).

May 25, 2010: KD Tunku Abdul Rahman’s warranty expired.

July 2, 2010: KD Tun Razak, the second Scorpene SSK, arrived at the Lumut RMN Base. It was more than six months behind schedule.

July 7, 2010: Marhalim Abas of the Malay Mail again reported that Malaysian submarine crews had remained on dry land since the first arrival due to continuous problems of KD Tunku Abdul Rahman; the crews risked to lose their submarine rating for unable to participate any trial dive. Both submarines are now parked at Sabah’s Sepanggar Bay Naval base, to date neither of them had undergone the necessary tropical water trial dive.

What is the actual cost of the Scorpene submarines?
The agreement signed with DCNS/Navantia cost Malaysian taxpayers Euro 1.08 billion (with Euro 114.96 million commission for Perimekar). Nonetheless, we later found out that the price did not include many items. What are the missing items that need additional payments?
Maintenance services: Malaysian government had awarded a contract to the joint venture company Boustead-DCN Bhd (BDCN) as the services provider for the submarines’ maintenance. Until today the cost has not been finalised. Nonetheless, in June 2009 Boustead Heavy Industries in a statement to Bursa (Stock Exchange) Malaysia informed that the government had expressed an intent to award a contract worth RM600 million to its joint-venture unit for in-service support for submarines.
March 2010: Defence Minister Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi clarified that for the first year’s maintenance would cost about RM270 million and the annual maintenance cost will be capped at RM600 million per year for both SSKs.
December 2009: Defence Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi announced an additional contract worth Euro37.5 million (about RM150 million) for the supply of Support and Test Equipment (S & TE) for the two Scorpene SSKs.
June 22, 2010: The Defence Minister answered a parliamentary question in which he revealed that the government has paid Euro219.265 million (about RM890 million) for 40 units of Exocet SM-39 missile and 30 units of Black Shark torpedo, to be delivered by 2013.
Infrastructure cost for submarine base in Sabah?
Training for crews, support staff etc?
Grand total (rough estimate):
Hardware: two Scorpene-class SSKs: RM5,430 million
Commissions in the form of services by Perimekar: RM540 million
Package for simulation and training, S & TE: RM150 million
Weapons: 40 SM-39 Exocet missiles and 30 Black Shark torpedoes: RM890 million
Total: RM6.98 billion
Maintenance services (under negotiations): RM270 million (first year)/RM600 million (maximum)
Money spent to date: RM7.3 billion. If RM600 million is added for maintenance, then the total jumps to RM7.58 billion (for 3 years).

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Finally! The Truth About Pakistan’s WMD Proliferation Is Out

Dr A Q Khan’s 13-Page Confession
I was in Belgium in December 1971 and had just submitted by Ph.D. thesis when I saw the most painful and humiliating scenes of the surrender of the Pakistan Army in Dacca. To see our officers and jawans with crosses on their backs and their heads shaven being herded like cattle by Indian soldiers being kicked and hit with sticks was such a traumatic scene that I would never forget it my whole life long. In May 1974 I was working as a Senior Scientist at FDO in Amsterdam and had specialized in uranium enrichment technology, the most advanced and the most complicated technology that the Dutch, the Germans and the British had perfected after spending billions of dollars over a 20 year period. Even today it is the best technology for enriching uranium. On 18th May, 1974 the Indians exploded their first nuclear weapon. Appreciating the immediate dangers posed to Pakistan’s security and very existence, I offered my services to the Prime Minister, Mr. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. On 20th December 1974 I paid a short visit and explained the whole process to the Prime Minister and told him that I could give Pakistan nuclear capability. After explaining the process to Munir Ahmed Khan, Chairman PAEC, we went back to Holland. On 21st December 1975 we again came on holiday. I went to see the progress of the work done in one year, which turned out to be almost nil. I explained this to the Prime Minister, who asked me to stay back and send my resignation to FDO. It was a tough decision for me and my family but we decided to stay so I could serve my beloved Pakistan. I was appointed Advisor to PAEC in June 1976. For six months I had worked without being paid and under miserable and disgusting conditions. I was later paid Rs. 3,000 per month. Working under PAEC proved to be impossible, hence the Prime Minister detached the Project from PAEC and made it independent under a Board of Coordination with Mr. A.G.M. Kazi (Chairman), Mr. Agha Shahi (Secretary General Foreign Affairs) and Mr. Ghulam Ishaq Khan (Secretary General Defence ) as members. We were to work directly under the Prime Minister. One should not forget that I had brought with me technology, experience and personal notes worth billions of dollars. Without my knowledge and experience, Pakistan could never - repeat never - have become a nuclear power. It was only because of my initiative, knowledge and achievements that our nation can walk straight and tall today! How I organized the work, set up the facilities and organized a most efficient network of companies to import materials and equipment is part of our history. I personally supervised each and every aspect of the Project and prepared the drawings and specifications to give to the suppliers. I trained hundreds of scientists and engineers who were initially totally ignorant of this high technology. The speed of the work and our achievements surprised our worst enemies and adversaries and the West stood helplessly by to see a Third World nation, unable even to produce bicycle chains or sewing needles, mastering the most advanced nuclear technology in the shortest possible span of time. Our mastery of this most advanced and invaluable technology enabled us to sign a historic contract for a giant plant in China. Because of my assistance to the Chinese, they in turn helped Munir Ahmed Khan in various projects that had been stagnating for years (i.e. UF6, Reprocessing, Conversion, Production Reactor etc.). By 1984 we had conducted successful cold tests and had manufactured all components for 30 nuclear devices. Upon my personal request, the Chinese Minister for Nuclear Technology had gifted us 50kg of weapon-grade enriched uranium, enough for 2 weapons. This gift clearly illustrates the importance the Chinese attached to the enrichment technology they received from me. I had asked for this to neutralize Indian nuclear blackmail and the imminent security threat to our country. Work was progressing very fast and I worked 14 to 16 hours a day, 7 days a week to get the job done against all odds, against all embargoes and despite the non-availability of trained manpower or expertise. In August 1988 President Gen. Zia-ul Haq died in a tragic air crash. Elections were held and Benazir Bhutto became the Prime Minister. Gen. Imtiaz, former M.S. to Mr. Bhutto, became Advisor on Defence to the Prime Minister and took over the supervision of the nuclear programme. In 1985 the revolution in Iran took place and there were many in Pakistan who sympathized with the revolution and change of dress code. Kahuta had a large number of Shias working there. One senior officer, Hanif Khalil, was even reported to have contacted the Iranian Ambassador, Mr. Mousavi, but, apprehensive of overzealousness and leakage to favour Iran, I warned him to be more cautious and carefull. In 1989 or 1990 COAS, Gen. Aslam Beg, promised to give the Iranians a few weapons and technology in lieu of 10 years of our defence budget. The Iranian Army Chief, Shamkani, flew to Islamabad in his own plane to pick up the weapons and papers. Admiral Sirohey as Chairman JCSC had a hard time trying to get out of this commitment, in which he succeeded. Later there was a lot of pressure by the COAS on Gen. Imtiaz and P.M. Benazir Bhutto to honour his commitment. Under pressure, Gen. Imtiaz asked Dr. Hashmi (I was out of station) to give some centrifuge parts and drawings etc. to the Iranians. He (Hashmi) asked him to wait until my return. When I got back, Gen. Imtiaz advised me to get components of two old (P-1) discarded machines and pack them into boxes together with 2 sets of drawings prepared by the late Mr. Khokhar. These drawings on their own were not sufficiently detailed to enable mastery of this difficult technology. The components and drawings were handed over to the late Dr. M.Z. Niazi for further disposal. As you know, Dr. Niazi was a confidante of Benazir Bhutto and Gen. Imtiaz. It was some time in 1994 or 1995 that Dr. Niazi requested me to see a few Iranian scientists passing through Karachi from China on their way to Dubai and then on to Teheran. I met them in our guesthouse in Karachi for about half an hour. I did not know any of them and they didn’t give any names. They said that they could not make any progress with their programme and asked whether it would be possible for me to visit them or to send a team for a few weeks. I flatly told them that it was not possible to have that kind of contact. They then asked a few simple questions and I advised them to study the available scientific literature, which contained all the information they were asking for. They seemed to be ignorant of the basic knowledge available in publications. During Gen. Zia’s rule, Benazir, her family, Gen. Imtiaz and Dr. Niazi were financially supported by Col. Gaddafi. It was reliably reported that Col. Gaddafi had given $ 200 million to the late Mr. Z.A. Bhutto to launch our nuclear programme. This was confirmed by Mr. Khalid Hassan, Press Secretary to Mr. Bhutto, in the mischievous BBC film “Project 706 - The Islamic Bomb”. I believe that one set of the drawings and components given by me was given to the Iranians and the other to the Libyans. Dr. Z.K. Niazi used to travel between Dubai, Tripoli and London and in Dubai he became friendly with Farooq of Sri Lanka through a British common friend named Peter. He probably brought a Libyan in contact with Farooq and asked him to arrange a meeting during one of my trips to Turkey. Once when we went to Istanbul (I donot know the date) to have discussions with Dr. Heilingbrunner, Lerch and Ruegg, Farooq (Sri Lanka) told me that a friend of Dr. Niazi’s would like to see me in the nearby Sheraton Hotel. We were staying at Hotel Dilson, Taksim Square. I met the gentleman, a plump darkish person who introduced himself as Magid or Mageed. He said that they wanted to start some R & D programme in the enrichment field and had been given assurances of Pakistan Government assistance. I said they lacked the trained manpower and infra-structure. He said that they could still start learning and do some laboratory experiments. I gave him a brief idea of how complex and difficult the whole technology was. After about half an hour we left and he said he would contact Farooq (Sri Lanka) whenever necessary. He was not a technical person. We did not hear from them for years and then during one of our trips to Turkey to meet our Turkish and Swiss suppliers, Tahir (nephew of Farooq) said that his uncle had phoned to say that a gentleman from Libya was there to see us. I met this gentleman with Tahir. He was of medium stature, average weight and a bit bald. He introduced himself as an Engineer and the name I understood was Mahfooz (you mentioned it as Matooq). He said he was now planning to start the programme as nothing had been done so far and he wanted to start on a small laboratory scale. I told him the plant needed a lot of space and many workshops and manpower. He said that they could go underground, to which I replied that it was not possible for such a big plant with all the facilities to go underground. Since he was planning on a small scale, he thought they might set up a farm of camels or goats and put one or two small sheds in between to put up the laboratory and start training the people in various technologies (vacuum, welding process, computer etc.). I suggested they first send enough people abroad for degrees/training and then start the research programme. He seemed to like that idea. We met for about half an hour at the most. We did not meet again for a long time. After 4 or 5 years, while in Dubai, Tahir invited us to dinner in his flat and the whole Matooq family (9 or 10 people) was there too. He said that they were now starting the work and that he was in touch with foreign suppliers. These had agreed to supply components, equipment etc. through Dubai and other countries. I just listened, being sure in my mind that there was not a committed approach and that they would not be able to achieve much. What they needed was commitment and trained manpower, neither of which they had. I met this same gentleman at dinner at Tahir’s place once or twice more over a period of 4 to 5 years. On those occasions he never discussed any technical matters or asked any questions. I only heard him discuss payment problems to suppliers with Tahir. Tahir once mentioned that Matooq was always taking away quite a bit of money for his personal use. There was always a young man named Karim with him. The last time I met him was in Casablanca for half an hour at tea when we were going to Timbuktu. Tahir said he had asked to see him there as the suppliers were making his life difficult. Tahir asked him to send some money as quickly as possible as the suppliers were pressing him very hard and chasing him. Matooq neither gave me any detail of his work nor asked any questions. I was aware that Tahir was assisting him with the placing of orders according to the supplier’s quotations. It was business between user and supplier. The suppliers had all the drawings that we had originally given them as well as their own modified drawings and were, thus, in a position to supply the requested or suggested products, make their own suggestions and/or submit quotations. Even when we met the last time, I was sure that the Libyans were unable to run any machine properly, not to talk of enrichment. Since I never visited their country or saw any film of their facilities, I did not know anything about their programme. I had heard that they had not even erected a single shed to do some preliminary work. Western suppliers were supplying components etc. and one factory in Malaysia, owned by the son of the Malaysian Prime Minister, Ahmad Badawi, was producing milk/oil tankers, liquid petroleum tankers etc. A Swiss Engineer had put up some machines in this factory to manufacture some components. The components intercepted on the ship near Italy were reportedly manufactured there. Pakistan or KRL had nothing whatsoever to do with it. At one time Tahir asked if he could hire some retired/nearly retired engineers for his factory. Farooq (KRL) was quite unhappy at being demoted and was interested in a good job. Mr. Nasimuddin was nearing LPR and wanted to find a job abroad as his children were studying in the U.S.A. I asked them to send their C.V.s to Malaysia. Mr. Nasimuddin paid a visit there but did not like the place and preferred a government job in the Middle East. Farooq showed some interest, but then preferred to stay back as he was hoping that Mr. Azmat would retire and that he would again be promoted to the post of D.G. That was the end of their interest in Malaysia. If the Libyans have any papers/drawings bearing our name or signatures etc, they must have obtained them either from Farooq (Sri Lanka), Tahir or our old suppliers, as the two first-mentioned had them in Dubai for our use. I have heard that Tahir is being interrogated by the Malysian, American and British authorities and is telling all sorts of stories to save himself. He must be saying the things that the interrogators want to hear from him, even though they may be incorrect. I did not ask anybody in KRL to send any gas to Libya and it is impossible to get 2 tons of gas out of Kahuta without this discrepancy being found out or caught. Our material balance sheet is foolproof. If one believes in the disappearance of this quantity of gas, one could also accept the possibility of the disappearance of Kg 200 or 300 weapon-grade material, which is also impossible. The suggestion that I ever asked for a Libyan passport is both ludicrous and preposterous. I lived in Europe for 15 years and could have got nationality of Germany, Holland or Belgium, but I was proud to keep my Pakistani passport. H.H. Prince Mamdouh bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud, brother of King Fahd, offered us (Gen. Chowhan, Dr. Nazeer and me) Saudi passports during one of our visists to the Islamic Development Bank meetings in Jeddah, but I very politely refused. H.H. Gen. Shaikh Mohammad bin Zayed, Chief of the U.A.E. Armed Forces and Deputy Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, offered me U.A.E. nationality many times together with a luxurious villa, which I also politely refused. I discarded all these lucrative and attractive offers and preferred to work and live in Pakistan.

The Iranians went on their own to buy, process or manufacture components and equipment. We did not hear from them for years. Some 10 odd years ago Tahir asked for some P-1 components from Farooq (KRL). I don’t remember the exact details. As you mentioned, some small components (200 sets) were collected from our old, discarded stock or a few may have been manufactured and sent by Farooq (KRL) to Tahir, who then probably passed them on to some Iranians. There were no casings, bases, feed systems, scoops etc. Without this system the machine is useless and hence the components were of little value in the overall project. Furthermore, the components were old, mostly rejected due to being out-of-tolerances. They could, at the most, be useful for assembling a few machines but it would not have been possible to make them run to the desired speed. You have to be extremely competent and expert to assemble, balance and run these machines to full speed (63,000 rpm). I allowed it as it was earlier sanctioned by Gen. Imtiaz and the Government and it would keep the Iranians happy and our friendship with them in tact. That the Iranians failed to achieve any progress in 15 years, shows the complexities and extreme technical expertise required to master this technology. It is most unfortunate that, having been betrayed by their own opposition nationals (Mujahideen Khalq Group) and having failed in their effort to achieve any progress, the Iranians have reportedly pointed their finger at us and are now putting us into trouble. They say that they have not given any names or sources from Pakistan. This was emphatically assured and conveyed to me through Izaz Jaffery by ex-Ambassador Agha Siraj Mousavi himself. The spirit behind giving some assistance to Iran or Libya was to maintain friendly relations between them and us. At no time did I seriously believe that they were capable of mastering this technology as they didn’t have the required infra-structure, the trained manpower or the technical know-how.

North Korea
After approval from the Prime Minister and the COAS, a contract was signed with the North Koreans for a Km 1500 surface-to-surface guided missile. A delegation led by me and including Gen. Mian Mushtaq, DGCD, Admiral Sohail Ahmed Khan, Col. Qazi, Dr. Mirza, Nasim Khan and others visited North Korea for about 5 days. Later their team came here and the deal was finalized with the participation of the then DGCD, Gen. Ziauddin, Dr. Samar Mubarakmand and Chairman Suparco, Mr. Sikander. The Korean team was officially allowed to stay at Kahuta once the products started coming. This was some time in 1993-4. They had to work in the shops and instruct our engineers and technicians in the making of the components. Most of their work was in the two machine shops that were also producing and assembling centrifuges and centrifuge sub-assemblies. They became interested in the technology and some engineers spent a lot of time with Khokhar in his shop where rotor tubes, bellows, etc. were being made and there was a test-bed of P-2. Khokhar was making the liquid fuel rocket engine and needed the Koreans the whole day on a daily basis. During the course of their stay it is quite possible that he explained some details of centrifuge machines to them. Some time in 1996, when the missile project was in full swing, some payments from the GHQ to the Koreans were pending. Somebody from GHQ advised Gen Kang, the Korean representative, to pay some money to Gen. Ziauddin to get the money released. Gen. Kang gave him a suitcase containing $ 0.5 million. Gen. Ziauddin informed Gen. Waheed, COAS, and they returned the money to Kang. Gen. J. Karamat, CGS, came to know of this and phoned me after a few days saying that I should arrange with Gen. Kang to pay this money to him for some secret army funds. He would then sanction the payment of their outstanding charges. He phoned me a few times to expedite the matter. I talked to Gen. Kang and he gave me the $ 0.5 million in cash, which I personally delivered to Gen. J. Karamat. In the meantime Gen. Karamat became COAS and said to me that he needed more money for the same secret funds and that I should talk to Gen. Kang. Gen. Kang came back to me after a few days and said that his boss was willing to give a further $ 2.5 million, provided we helped them with the enrichment technology. They already had a production reactor and were producing plutonium. They had also manufactured a few weapons as, according to Gen. Kang’s boss, they had received Kg 200 plutonium and weapon designs from the Russians in the mid-fifties after the Korean War. They had shown Dr. Mirza and me the perfect nuclear weapon, technologically more advanced than ours. They wanted this technology only for fuel for the power reactors as it cost only 1/10 of that of the diffusion process and required only low capital investment. They were not interested in weapon-grade production of material and did not ask any questions or for drawings for specially designed cascades for weapon-grade material. I informed Gen. J. Karamat; he agreed and gave me a go-ahead. I asked my people to prepare 20 outdated P-1 machines and gave them. Since they were working in the plant and were familiar with the P-2 machines, they asked for 4 of these too. I discussed the matter with the COAS and obtained his approval. After that I personally gave the remaining $ 2.5 million to Gen. Karamat in cash at the Army House to make up the whole amount. The senior engineers at Kahuta were responsible for the Korean’s movements and work. People at the plant were mixing with them every day and taking them around or discussing things with them. I was hardly there. I used to go to Kahuta for 3 or 4 hours to do administrative work and mostly spent the time in my office or with Brig. Behram who was making a launcher, which was our priority at the time. The Koreans took the machines in their own plane with which they were bringing missile parts for us. Security Staff was always present to check incoming and outgoing cargo. Even Dr. Mirza and Nasim Khan made some control panels and software packages and gave them. The Koreans had brought some UF6 gas for analysis, which we tested and found that it was not pure enough. They requested a few Kg of depleted gas for comparison purposes, which we gave them. Technically and monetarily it had no value. One could buy such a sample from abroad. One flowmeter was given to them as a sample. A flowmeter is an ordinary instrument in a UF6 plant. It is banned for Pakistan but available in the open market in Europe. They, in return, taught us how to make Krytrons (fast switches), which were banned items and are needed in nuclear weapons detonation. This was very valuable to us. After having been here for years, the COAS (Gen. Pervez Musharraf) desired that we should send the Koreans back immediately. They left within 3 days. After that we had no more contact with them. I left KRL on 31.3.2001 and that was that. As far as the destroying of any papers or gate passes is concerned, I only advised people not to keep any papers or records that could implicate Pakistan with transfer of technology or equipment to North Korea at any later stage. At that time there were various lobbies against Pakistan and I feared that these papers could, if falling into wrong hands, be used to implicate Pakistan. It was only meant as a precautionary measure. I have done nothing against the interests of Pakistan and whatever I did could not have resulted in proliferation of nuclear weapons. It was primarily meant to keep up our friendship with those countries that had been helping Pakistan from time to time. I would like to reiterate that I never - repeat never - ever put foot on Iranian or Libyan soil. In early 1989 Gen. Aslam Beg asked me if I could help the Iranians in enrichment technology so that they could also achieve nuclear capability. He was convinced that, if Iran had this capability, it would work as a shield between Pakistan on the one side and the U.S.A. and other Western countries on the other side and that these countries would then not be able to undertake any mischievous or adventurous action against Pakistan. I agreed in principle, but told him I could only do so with a go-ahead from the Government. When Gen. Imtiaz told me to do the needful, I did so as I knew he must have obtained clearance from the Prime Minister. So also was the case with Libya. Dr. Zafar Niazi told me that it had been cleared by the Prime Minister, upon which I took the necessary action.

The A Q Khan Report by Pakistan’s ISI
After hearing press complaints and information coming out from various sources after agreements, first by Iran and then Libya, to abandon their programmes of weapons of mass destruction, the Government of Pakistan took a very serious note of the allegations made by various international newspapers and media and started an intensive, thorough and aggressive investigation against a number of scientists and engineers who had anything to do with the production, assembling and testing of centrifuge components and machines as well as those responsible for the import and export of equipment and materials. The Director General of Security and the Director General of Maintenance and General Services were also detained for thorough investigation. The Principal Engineer of the Design Office, who had been abroad for 4 years, had just returned and was also detained. Similarly, the Director General Process Division who was responsible for keeping records of UF6 gas and the Director General Health Physics who kept the records of incoming natural gas and outgoing depleted gas, uranium metal etc. were also detained. The founding father of KRL, Dr. A.Q. Khan, was also interrogated 3 times for many hours by the DG ISI and the DG SPD. The investigation has yielded the following results:
1. When the organization was set up in mid 1976, a free hand was given to the Project Director to acquire each and everything through any means. There was a direct and imminent threat to Pakistan’s security and existence in the wake of the dismemberment of the country in 1971 and after the Indian nuclear test in 1974.
2. Gen. Ziaul Haq had openly proclaimed that to “beg, borrow or steal” was the policy of the day in the light of the imposition of stringent embargoes and restrictions on any nuclear-related materials and equipment to Pakistan.
3. Pakistan, being an under-developed country with no industrial infrastructure, had to buy each and every bit of material and piece of equipment surreptitiously from abroad in the open market and had to establish a network of cover companies within the country and outside to by-pass embargoes and import all the necessary items. Such companies were operating in Kuwait, Bahrain, the UAE, Singapore, the UK, Germany, Luxembourg, Switzerland, etc.
4. Since no industrial infra-structure was available within the country, production drawing of all the components of the centrifuge machines were sent to England, France, Germany, Switzerland, Holland etc. for the placing of orders for the thousands of components and equipment required in order to expedite the work, which was a race against time.
5. Dubai, having no customs formalities or restrictions and no financial impediments, was made the main operating centre. All the foreign suppliers (Dutch, British, French, Turkish, Belgian, Swiss, German etc.) were regularly coming to Dubai to discuss offers and orders. A company named Ben Belilah Enterprises BBE), owned by an Arab police officer, was introduced by Mr. A. Salam, a British national. BBE had a Sri Lankan Manager named Farooq. Salam and Farooq, both being Tamils, were good friends. Due to the frequent meetings between our experts and the foreign suppliers, sets of almost all the drawings were kept in Dubai in a flat that had been rented especially for this purpose so they wouldn’t have to be carried to and fro all the time.
6. Due to religious and idealogical affinity, Pakistanis had great affection for Iran. Former COAS, Gen. Aslam Beg was in favour of very close cooperation in the nuclear field in lieu of financial assistance promised to him towards Pakistan’s defence budget. Benazir Bhutto’s government came under a lot of pressure for cooperation and under this pressure and the decision/approval/directive of Gen. Imtiaz Ali, Adviser on Defence (including nuclear matters) to the Prime Minister, KRL gave some drawings and components to Iran for R & D work. The information given was by no means sufficient to enable Iran to establish even a small pilot plant, not to talk of a fully fledged centrifuge plant or produce nuclear weapons. The Iranians already had excellent contacts with European suppliers and they also started importing components and equipment through Dubai (Farooq). For some time there was close cooperation through Farooq. The Iranians wanted drawings etc. of valves, inverters, control panels, cascades etc. from Farooq and they gave him $ 5 million to help them in their efforts to acquire this information. Farooq gave some money to Dr. Niazi who had arranged the initial contact between him (Farooq) and the Iranians and some he transferred to his own accounts. Part of the money was put in an account in the fictitious name of Haider Zaman, which first Farooq and later on Tahir (Farooq’s nephew) and Dr. A.Q. Khan could operate. This account was opened personally by Farooq. Some of the money from this account was used by Tahir for payments etc. and some was donated for vaious social, educational and welfare projects undertaken by Dr. A.Q. Khan in Pakistan.
7. The Iranians needed some P-1 (early discarded model) components. They approached Tahir to request Farooq, an engineer in KRL, to send them these components. These were old components that were no longer being used by KRL and were not sufficient or adequate for the establishment of a small pilot plant or to produce nuclear weapons.
8. If it is true, but this is highly unlikely, that there were some traces of uranium in the Iranian facilities, there is just the remotest off chance that one or more KRL components inadvertently had traces of UF6 gas on them that had not been properly decontaminated before shipment.
9. Farooq (Sri Lanka) was the main contact with the Libyans through Dr. Niazi. He brought the suppliers in contact with them and gave copies of all the drawings etc. which Dr. A.Q. Khan had kept in Dubai for discussions with the suppliers. These drawings also included those of the device, as Dr. Khan was ordering components from England, Switzerland etc. His own old notes were also kept there for necessary use. Farooq and/or Tahir had access to the flat as they were maintaining it and they must have given copies of all the papers to the Libyans. The Libyans gave Farooq/Tahir $5 million, some of which they gave to Dr. Niazi, some they transferred to India, Singapore etc. and some was put in the account of the fictitious Haider Zaman. Some money from this account was used by Tahir for payments to suppliers etc. and some was again donated for social, welfare and educational projects in Pakistan run by Dr. Khan.
10. The Iranian affair was closed long ago, but the Libyans were trying to acquire components and equipment from abroad via Dubai either through Tahir or directly from other suppliers in Europe.
11. Whatever assistance was given was done in order to maintain friendly relations between the concerned country and us. It was never seriously believed this would lead to anything as they were scientifically and technologically backward countries unable even to establish a pilot plant of this nature or produce nuclear weapons.
12. It is most unfortunate that these things happened due to the peculiar nature of the circumstances and loose arrangements in those early days and because of the personal obligations of previous governments to these countries. There is a very strict command and control system now under the National Command Authority and nothing can be leaked out or taken away from any facilities any more. Fortunately, these happenings have not done irreparable damage to weapons control regimes and have awakened everyone all over the world to the danger of the vast underground network of western suppliers of this most sensitive and dangerous technology.

Letter Written by Dr A Q Khan to His Wife
If the government plays any mischief with me take a tough stand:
(1)You know we had cooperation with China for 15 years. We put up a centrifuge plant at Hanzhong (250km south-west of Xian). We sent 135 C-130 plane loads of machines, inverters, valves, flow meters, pressure gauges. Our teams stayed there for weeks to help and their teams stayed here for weeks at a time. Late minister Liu We, V. M. [vice minister] Li Chew, Vice Minister Jiang Shengjie used to visit us.
(2)The Chinese gave us drawings of the nuclear weapon, gave us kg50 enriched uranium, gave us 10 tons of UF6 (natural) and 5 tons of UF6 (3%). Chinese helped PAEC [Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, the rival organisation to the Khan Research Laboratories] in setting up UF6 plant, production reactor for plutonium and reprocessing plant.
(3) Probably with the blessings of BB [Benazir Bhutto] & Gen [Aslam] Beg , Gen Imtiaz asked Hashmi [a former colleague of AQK] & me to give a set of drawings and some components to the Iranians. We had no direct contact and we never sent anybody or received anybody. The names and addresses of suppliers were also given to the Iranians. [Note in margin] Gave these things through Dr Niazi [Bhutto family dentist and confidant, now dead]. Must have got money for it ($1 million).
(4) Gen Jehangir Karamat [still alive, chief of army staff 1996-8, sent by Musharraf as ambassador to U.S. 2004-2006] took $3 million through me from the N Koreans and asked me to give them some drawings and machines.
(5) We sold [conventional] weapons to Libya, Sudan and Malaysia. And sent [conventional] weapons to Bosnia. [Khan’s KRL plant also made anti-tank missiles and shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles.]
(6) There is proof of all this stashed somewhere safely which will be given to public and press.
Use Major Islam or Hashmi [former colleagues of A Q Khan] and get S M Zafar [lawyer of AQK] to take up these matters in court/public. Get in touch with Simon Henderson and give him all the details. Ask Henk [Slebos, part of Khan’s purchasing network in The Netherlands] to get a guy from Telegraaf and give him all the details. Tell them the bastards first used us and now playing dirty games with us.
Love you
Khantje [diminutive name used between Khan and his wife]
Get out quickly to Dubai with Tanya [grand-daughter who lives with them] for a while or leave Tanya with Ayesha [daughter who lives in Islamabad]. I believe they want to make me a scapegoat as Mr Wajid Shamsul Hassan (former HC [high commissioner] in London) had warned in an article (with Major Islam). They might try to get rid of me to cover up all the things (dirty) they got done by me in connection with Iran, Libya & N. Korea. This is just to forewarn you.
Dr A Q Khan
NI & Bar, HI

General Jehangir Karamat’s Letter to Fox News
Dear Ms Browne,
Thank you for reaching out to me prior to your planned broadcast and website postings. I am sure that a prestigious news organization like the Fox News will satisfy themselves about the authenticity and credibility of sources, documents, letters, statements etc because many of these have been in circulation and have been changing hands for years even as new fabricated ones keep cropping up. There are obviously many motivations for this activity. None of the information that you have asked me to comment upon is new. It has all been published before in different formats and pertains to events almost fifteen years ago. The entire proliferation episode actually spans a much longer period with more than one country involved. The total episode was the subject of an exhaustive and thorough investigation before it was formally closed. The allegations and information surfacing now have to be seen in this overall context as regards their timing and motivation as well as coincidence with other currently ongoing situations----these aspects will inevitably be discussed. Having retired in 1998 I was not privy to the details of the proliferation episode and the final investigation report. I can only comment on the specific issues that concern me and are supposedly from ‘statements made during investigations’. The allegation that I accepted any payment from Dr Khan for letting him pass on material to North Korea is preposterous, false and a malicious fabrication. In fact if such an allegation has been made then it fully implicates Dr Khan in ‘one on one’ dealing with another country including receiving money. Where that money subsequently went (if it was paid) is speculation and no one persons word can be accepted especially if that person was actually involved in such matters over a prolonged period. I doubt that Dr Khan would put himself in such a position because it in no way clears him—it actually implicates him. I categorically deny this baseless allegation because I never asked Dr Khan to pass on to the North Koreans ‘drawings and machines’ related to uranium enrichment. As CGS I was not in a position to demand anything from Dr A Q Khan. He was neither my subordinate nor could I delay or sanction payments to him or anyone else. I had nothing to do with the payments or the program. I am also sure that a person of Dr Khan’s standing would not get into the business of carting around money in brief cases like a bagman. If any illegal demands were being made then those could, and should have been reported to my superiors because the CGS was never in the loop on matters pertaining to the nuclear program. I am not aware of the dealings between ‘Kang’ and Dr Khan or anyone else. I have no knowledge of the details of the North Korean program that are given in your note. I do know that as COAS I did not personally control any enrichment program and that GHQ never made payments of any sort to anyone. All contact was through designated staff and GHQ had nothing to do with contractual payments. There were never any ‘secret funds’. All contracts were between governments with laid down channels for payment—these could not be violated or circumvented. No contract with North Korea was signed during my tenure as COAS. Any material given or received outside the ongoing contracts by the person in charge of those materials was illegal. There was no reason for anyone to make any payment to me at Army House or anywhere else—no such payments were ever made because no transfer of material was ever authorized by me. The comments about the status of the North Korean program and the details given are something that I do not know about and therefore cannot comment upon. All this has been written about before and if you so desire I can try and locate that article and forward it to you. This probably pertains to a much later period 1999-2003 possibly so the question of anyone asking me for permission to transfer material does not arise. This never happened. I am not sure who is being indicated when it is said that ‘since they were working in the plant with P-2 machines’ but if it implies North Koreans then their presence was completely illegal and unauthorized. I would seriously question such an assertion. Finally let me say that as a rule I do not get into correspondence or discussion over such issues because no country would want its responsible people to publicly debate sensitive matters. I have given you my views frankly and I hope you will use this material judiciously.
With best wishes and regards
Jehangir Karamat

Saturday, September 24, 2011

PNS Azmat Launched, First ZDK-03 AEW & CS For PAF Airborne

The Pakistan Navy’s Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Noman Bashir was the Chief Guest on September 20 at the launching ceremony of the first of two FAC-Ms being built for the Pakistan Navy at China’s Xingang Shipyard in Tianjin on September 20. Each FAC-M, displacing 260 tonnes and armed with four C-802A anti-ship cruise missiles, is manned by a crew complement of 20.—Prasun K. Sengupta

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

China’s NLOS-BSMs For Export & Hatf-9/Nasr/M-20 NLOS-BSM Explained

NLOS-BSMs of Chinese origin are presently being marketed by two state-owned entities: China National Precision Machinery Import & Export Corp (CPMIEC), and Aerospace Long-March International Trade Co Ltd (ALIT). The latter’s latest product is the M-20, which has been exported to Pakistan, where it known as the Hatf-9/Nasr. Capable of striking targets between 70km and 270km, the all-weather capable M-20, with a Mach 3 cruise speed, comes armed with both a 200kg unitary high-explosive (HE) blast-fragmentation warhead for engaging high-value and time-sensitive targets, as well as a sub-kiloton yield tactical nuclear warhead. Two M-20s housed inside cannisters are mounted on a 8 x 8 transporter/erector/launcher (TEL). For navigation purposes, use is made of a RLG-INS coupled to a GPS receiver (for receiving high-accuracy navigational updates in secure PY-code from China’s ‘Beidou’ constellation of GPS satellites), and an infra-red sensor for terminal homing that gives the missile a CEP of less than 10 metres.
CPMIEC’s 2-tonne B-611M missile is designed to attack supply lines, warehouses, ballistic/cruise missile launch sites, SAM batteries, command-and-control centres, air bases, road/railway transportation hubs, and area targets in urban surroundings. Armed with a 480kg HE warhead, the B-611M has 280km range. Up to two cannister-mounted B-611Ms can be carried by a wheeled TEL.
Another NLOS-BSM from CPMIEC is the P-12, which made its public debut in November 2006. Up to two P-12s are carried in an enclosed compartment mounted on a 6 x 6 TEL. The P-12 has a range of 150km, and it comes armed with either a 300kg HE blast fragmentation warhead, or a cluster warhead containing 19 anti-armour sub-munitions. Both the B-611M and P-12 have a CEP of about 2 metres when using a RLG-INS coupled to a GPS receiver, plus an optronic sensor for terminal homing.
CPMIEC’s latest NLOS-BSM offering is the vertically-launched joint attack rocket & missile (JARM) system, which can fire both the 280km-range BP-12A and the 200km-range SY-400 from a common launch platform.
The JARM, which made its public debut in November 2010, makes use of combined GPS-RLG-INS navigation systems to achieve a CEP of 3 metres  A typical JARM Battery comprises ten 8 x 8 TELs housing either 80 SY-400s or 20 BP-12As, or a combination of both.—Prasun K. Sengupta

Saturday, September 17, 2011

‘Prahaar’ NLOS-BSM Explained

The maiden test-firing of the Prahaar (to strike) quick-reaction, vertically launched surface-to-surface non-line-of-sight battlefield support missile (NLOS-BSM)—developed by the Defence Research & Development Organisation’s (DRDO) Advanced Systems Laboratory (ASL) on July 21, 2011--formally kicked off Phase 2 of the Indian Army’s on-going transformational efforts aimed at acquiring precision-guided munitions (PGM) that would provide responsive, long-range lateral supporting fire-assaults as well as shape the theatre-based battlespace for ensuring the conditions for decisive victories. The Prahaar, which has been under development since 2008, has a length of 7.3 metres (23.95 feet) and diameter of 420mm (1.38 feet), weighs 1,280kg, is armed with a 200kg warhead, has a circular error probable (CEP) of less than 10 metres, and is powered by a single-stage solid-propellant rocket that takes the missile to a height of 35km (114,829 feet) before reaching its target in a depressed ballistic trajectory out to a range of 150km in about 250 seconds. Its airframe is derived from the Mach 4 AAD-1 endo-atmospheric ballistic missile interceptor, which has been under development by the ASL since late 1998. Carried inside a hermetically sealed cannister with a 10-year shelf-life, the Prahaar will come packed in a six-unit pod configuration on board a high-mobility 8 x 8 BEML-TATRA wheeled vehicle housing both a command-and-control shelter as well as a transporter-erector-launcher (TEL) mechanism designed by Larsen & Toubro. The solid-fuelled Prahaar is, in essence, a product that overcomes all the deficiencies displayed by the DRDO-developed Prithvi family of battlefield support missiles (the SS-150, SS-250, SS-350 and Dhanush), which makes uses of liquid fuel and is cumbersome both in terms of transportation and launch readiness procedures.
The Indian Army’s search for a precision-guided NLOS-BSM dates back to late 2002, when it began examining options like the 280km-range 9K720 Iskander-E from Russia’s KB Mashynostroyeniya, and the 300km-range LORA from Israel Aerospace Industries’ MLM Division. The decision to import such weapons was, however, abandoned two years later in favour of an indigenous solution by leveraging those core technological competencies that had already been achieved by both the ASL and the DRDO’s Research Centre Imarat (RCI) while in the process of developing the Agni family of nuclear-capable intermediate-/medium-range ballistic missiles and the BrahMos supersonic multi-role/multi-platform cruise missile. Thus, just like in the case of LORA, it was decided that the Prahaar would follow a relatively simple three-element design, comprising a warhead in the fore section, propulsion unit, including the solid-fuel rocket motor with a nozzle. The nozzle would be encircled by the navigation, flight control and guidance unit, which includes the integrated avionic guidance and flight control section, cruciform tail control surfaces, actuators, related antennas and connectors. The ring-laser gyro-based inertial navigation system (RLG-INS), along with its miniaturised GLONASS-K GPS receiver incorporating a 12-channel selective availability anti-spoofing module (SAASM) GPS receiver and using digital RS-422/485 databus interfaces, plus the inertial measurement unit (IMU) utilising an RS-485 digital databus interface, and on-board digital computer, were all designed and built by RCI. For the road-mobile TEL, RCI developed a lightweight land navigation system called FINGS (for providing position and north-pointing information) that makes use of three fibre-optic gyroscopes (weighing less than 1kg), three micro-machined silicon accelerometers and a microprocessor. The system senses acceleration and rotation about three orthogonal axes and outputs temperature compensated incremental angles and incremental velocities. For ensuring the Prahaar’s in-flight manoeuvrability a cooperative dual-control system using divert thrusters was developed for actuating forward and aft control devices simultaneously to significantly improve the missile’s dynamic capability. Thus, to effect the desired manoeuvre, the missile’s aft fins will initially be deflected to generate a force opposite that of the force being used conventionally (thereby pushing the missile’s tail in the direction of the commanded manoeuvre), while simultaneously actuating the forward thrusters to also push the missile’s nose in the direction of the commanded manoeuvre, but at a faster rate than the tail section. This causes the missile body to simultaneously rotate and translate in the direction of the commanded manoeuvre. Once a sufficient amount of aerodynamic force develops due to body rotation, the aft fins are deflected to generate a force that opposes the commanded manoeuvre to maintain a moment on the missile body and complete the commanded manoeuvre. An important benefit of this dual-control strategy is that the missile begins to translate in the direction of the commanded manoeuvre immediately. It is believed that the Prahaar’s warhead section options will include unitary high-explosive blast fragmentation payloads, and sensor-fuzed anti-personnel/anti-materiel (APAM) munitions. While design and fabrication expertise for the former is available with the DRDO, for the latter foreign R & D expertise has been sought from Israel Military Industries (IMI).

Deployment Plans
Under Phase 1 of the Army’s efforts to acquire the requisite fire-assault capabilities for decisively influencing both the contact and deep battles, the BrahMos Block 2 supersonic PGM (with its range and cruise altitude capped at 290km and 13km, respectively, in order for Russia to adhere to the missile technology control regime guidelines) is presently being acquired to equip three missile artillery regiments that form part of the ORBATs of the Indian Army’s three dedicated Artillery Divisions—40, 41 and 42. On December 22, 2004 the first production version of the land-based, quick-reaction BrahMos Block 2 was successfully test-fired from the Pokhran Firing Range. Each BrahMos Block 2 Regiment comprises three Batteries each with four mobile autonomous launchers or MAL (each with three vertically-launched missiles), three mobile command posts (MCP), one fixed command centre, nine missile replenishment vehicles, and three maintenance support vehicles. Each Regiment can fire 36 BrahMos Block 2 missiles against different targets (like interior and exterior lines of communication and transportation nodes) within seconds over a frontage of 600km.

The Army has mandated the bulk procurement of both the BrahMos Block 2 (and the projected Block 3) and Prahaar PGMs for four principal reasons: First, there’s the need to replace the existing stocks of liquid-fuelled Prithvi-1 SS-150 BSMs that have far outlived their utility. Second, during a future round of all-out hostilities (which are likely to be of limited duration, not lasting more than two weeks), the Army wants to reduce as much as possible its traditional reliance on the Indian Air Force (IAF) for close air support and tactical battlespace interdiction during the first 72 hours and wants to acquire its own integral ground-launched firepower assets that are available on demand under all weather conditions. This in turn will free the IAF to realise its larger objective of shaping the multi-theatre battlespace by decapitating the enemy’s tactical airpower through relentless offensive air superiority and counter-base air campaigns. Third, the Army wants to compensate for its debilitating present-day lack of new-generation tube artillery assets (like 155mm/52-cal howitzers of the towed, tracked and motorised varieties) by acquiring precision-guided BSMs that are easily transportable by road and railways, have minimal visual and electromagnetic signatures and a small deployment footprint, and are therefore easily moved and hidden. Fourth, post-OP Parakram (the 10-month eyeball-to-eyeball standoff with Pakistan starting December 2001), Army HQ, while in the process of conceptualising its future warfighting doctrines, plus the strategies and tactics required for waging ‘hyperwar’ or multi-dimensional parallel warfare, had projected a requirement for quick-reaction NLOS-PGMs that will be employed for both the tactical and operational levels of war, meaning such weapons will no longer will be solely a Corps-level deep (operational) fire-assault asset, but they will also be employed by combined arms brigade-sized battle groups at the close combat (tactical) level. The need therefore was for PGMs with increased range and accuracy for providing destructive, protective/suppressive and special-purpose fire-assaults, thereby maximising lethality and minimising collateral damage all along the close, deep and rear operational spectrums of the non-linear and non-contiguous AirLand battlespace. In other words, what the Army wanted was adoption of a warfighting posture in which tactical- and operational-level fire-assaults and manoeuvre warfare would be complementary elements, thereby enabling the ground forces commander to rapidly suppress and destroy hostile forces and restrict the enemy’s ability to counter friendly actions by mobilising and marshalling its operational reserves, thereby, setting the stage for successful manoeuvre warfare operations. Friendly formations could thus use manoeuvre to dislocate or isolate enemy units, while rocket artillery-based fire-assaults fires could achieve maximum effectiveness and efficiency. While one without the other would lessen the chances of success, combined, they would make destroying larger enemy forces feasible and enhance the protection of friendly forces. In addition, asymmetric threats in built-up areas would dictate the use of immediately responsive and continuously available fire-assaults in all types of terrain and weather against time-sensitive targets without fear of collateral damage.

At this stage it must be clarified, though,  that the Indian Army has yet to articulate the optimum pro-active warfighting strategy (mistakenly referred to as the non-existent Cold Start Doctrine by both Indian and foreign think-tanks) that is designed to both reduce the mobilisation time of its offensive formations and their break-out into enemy territory (within a 72-hour period) in a series of shallow thrusts going no deeper than 30km into enemy territory (therefore those who contend that very early in the war the Indian Army will make deep armoured thrusts inside Pakistan are either being ignorant at best, or mischievous at worst). Given the fact that the next round of all-out war between the two countries will be short, swift and intense, the Army believes that instead of making multiple Corps-level thrusts deep into enemy territory, the objective should be to force the Pakistan Army to commit its operational reserves into battle at the very early stages of the war by making a series of shallow thrusts into enemy territory with Brigade-sized combined arms battle groups, following which the Indian Army would employ superior operational art backed up by network-centric knowledge-based war-waging technologies and tactics to envelop and overwhelm the hostile forces by waging effects-based ‘parallel’ or ‘hyper’ war, thereby destroying the enemy’s war-waging assets in detail.
Also to be noted is that the deployment of NLOS-BSMs like the Prahaar, will constitute only one element of the Army’s transformational knowledge-based warfighting strategy. Needless to say, the deployment of Prahaar will make no sense unless and until the Army succeeds in acquiring the required level of battlespace transparency through the induction of the requisite type of situational awareness/common operating picture acquisition tools that will optimally compress the observe, orient, decide, act (OODA) loop. Such tools, like the Tac-C3I, are still years away from deployment, as are its components like the battlespace surveillance system, the battlespace management system, the futuristic combat net radio network, and the F-INSAS system.
Another critical factor likely to affect the Prahaar’s battlespace performance (especially its accuracy) will be the status of the projected Indian Regional Navigational Satellite System (IRNSS)--an autonomous regional GPS-based satellite navigation system being developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) since May 2006 with a project funding of Rs16 billion. Though the project was originally due for completion by 2012, the scheduled deployment milestones to be attained have slipped by a few more years. Though both the Prahaar and BrahMos presently have access to high-accuracy MILSPEC PY-standard codes relayed by Russia’s GLONASS-K GPS satellite constellation, the plan for the long-run is to discard this option in favour of the IRNSS, which will eventually comprise a constellation of seven GPS navigation satellites placed in geostationary orbit that will provide an absolute position accuracy of better than 10 metres throughout India and within a region extending approximately 2,000km around India.

Prithvi BSM Now A Dead Dog
Even though the 4.4-tonne, liquid-fuelled SS-150 Prithvi-1 ground-launched BSM was under development since 1983 under the DRDO’s Integrated Guided Missiles Development Programme, the Indian Army was never interested in procuring any such weapon system and therefore it neither submitted its General Staff Qualitative Requirements (GSQR) for any BSM, nor was it asked to submit one by the Ministry of Defence (MoD). However, after coming under enormous pressure from then Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1988, Army HQ reluctantly agreed to induct into service a version of the SS-150 armed with a 1-tonne high-explosive (HE) unitary warhead and offering a circular error probability (CEP--a measure of accuracy and consistency) of 100 metres (and not 25 metres as claimed by the DRDO) at maximum range.  Despite the DRDO’s protestations, the Army chose not to induct any SS-150s armed with blast pre-fragmented warheads, cluster munitions-carrying payloads, incendiary warheads and fuel-air explosive warheads, since the poor CEP of the SS-150 (due to its dry-tuned gyro-based strap-down inertial navigation system) ensured that any damage caused to the enemy would be only of a collateral nature. Thus, deliveries of the SS-150s got underway from 1993 and lasted till early 2009, with about 180 being built by the MoD-owned, Hyderabad-based Bharat Dynamics Ltd. These missiles presently equip the 333 (raised in June 1993 in Panchmarhi and commissioned in October 1995 under the Ambala-based 40 Artillery Division of the Mathura-based I Corps), 444 (raised in October 2001 under the Pune-based 41 Artillery Division of the Jodhpur-based XII Corps) and 555 Missile Groups (operational by January 2005 under the 42 Artillery Division of the Ambala-based II Corps), with each Group being equipped with 60 liquid-fuelled SS-150s. Each Prithvi Missile Group was made up of two Sub-Groups that in turn are made up of two Troops. Each Troop has six SS-150 mobile autonomous launchers (MAL). Thus, each Group has 24 MALs and almost 72 support vehicles (including the four command-and-control vehicles, plus fuel carriers, missile transporters, oxidizer carriers, and warhead carriers). However, in times of hostilities, the missiles will be pre-fuelled (the shelf-life of the liquid propellant is 10 years) before being deployed to their launch sites where only three vehicles—the MAL, power supply vehicle and one Mobile Command Post (MCP)—would be employed. The SS-150 is fuelled by a liquid propellant (a 50:50 combination of isomeric xylidine and trimethlyamine), with the oxidizer being inhibited red fuming nitric acid (IRFNA). The propellant has a 260 specific impulse and was specified by the Army, which required a range fluctuation between 40km and 150km and this could only have been achieved by a variable total impulse best generated by liquid propellants. Following its launch, the SS-150’s semi-ballistic trajectory takes it to an altitude of 30km following which it adopts either a steep ballistic trajectory at nearly 80 degrees, or a lift-augmented descent trajectory. As far as the latter option goes, there are six flight-path variations available, which are pre-programmed prior to launch.
The Indian Army has always found the SS-150 deficient in five critical areas. Firstly, a Prithvi pre-filled with its highly skin-corrosive liquid propellant has shelf-life limitations, while fuelling the missile under battlefield conditions requires large preparatory time. Secondly, as explained earlier, the missile’s field deployment footprint is characterised by a large number of support vehicles, which can easily be detected by the enemy’s airborne/space-based overhead reconnaissance assets. Thirdly, since the missile’s terminal velocity is low, its unitary HE warhead will not be able to penetrate the hardened fortifications on the international border between India and Pakistan. Fourthly, given its poor terminal accuracy, it never did qualify as a reliable BSM when equipped with any kind of conventional warhead. And lastly, the SS-150 takes time to accelerate as it rises upon firing, making it an easily observable target both by visual means and radar, which in turn will lead to swift counter-bombardment by the enemy. Even though the DRDO now claims that the follow-on 350km-range Prithvi-2 SS-250 variant (under development since 1996 and being proposed to replace those SS-150s whose shelf-lives have either already expired or will expire by 2014) has a CEP of less than 10 metres (this being achieved by doing away with the strap-down inertial navigation system and using a new ring-laser gyro-based INS coupled to a GLONASS-K GPS receiver developed by the DRDO’s Vignyanakancha-based Research Centre Imarat), the Prithvi-2 still suffers from the very same four remaining shortcomings of the SS-150, and therefore, contrary to what the DRDO has been claiming, the Prithvi-2 will never enter service with either the Indian Army or the Strategic Forces Command, a fact already confirmed by the MoD, which has decreed that the existing SS-150s under the Strategic Forces Command will be replaced in future by the 2,500km-range Agni-2A Prime. Thus, the Prithvi in all its manifestations is a dead dog that continues to be flogged by the DRDO for meaningless glory. The Prithvi-2 was first test-fired on January 27, 1996 and this was followed by further test-firings conducted on March 31, 2001, on October 12, 2009 (when two Prithvi-2s were fired), on March 27 and June 18, 2010, on September 24, 2010, on December 22, 2010 (when two missiles were fired), and finally on June 9, 2011. It has so far demonstrated a flight duration of 483 seconds and a peak altitude of 43.5km, but unlike the BrahMos, has never been test-fired over a land-based firing range.—Prasun K. Sengupta