Tech Capabilities also going to determine how nations deal with each other


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Besides diplomacy, "technological capabilities" are also going to determine how different nations deal with each other, a foreign policy analyst said Friday, and asserted that India's international relations approach has been to balance the two aspects.

Seshadri Chari, Secretary General of Forum for Integrated National Security (FINS), in his address at an event here, cited India's deal with Russia to acquire the S-400 air defence system, one of the most advanced long-range surface-to-air missile defence systems. "Technological advancement is really going to determine how nations are going to deal between them. The two World Wars happened and what determined was the strength of the Army that a country had," he said.

Chari, a former editor of RSS mouthpiece Organiser in his remarks at the Prof M L Sondhi memorial award ceremony, said after the two World Wars, there was a long period of "ideology that dominated international relations -- East vs West, communist vs no-communist and then came in the introduction of technology, Sputnik vs Apollo, Russia vs US space programme".

"So, today when we think in terms of dealing with the US and Russia at the same time, acquiring of S-400 from Russia and at the same time not stepping on the toes of Washington, it is nothing but a mixture of science and technology and understanding of the nuances of technological advances and implementing it in international relations," Chari said. There has been a "recalibration of foreign policies" in the last few decades, said Cahri, also joint director (International Affairs) at the Institute for National Security Studies.

Rajaram Nagappa, director of the International Strategic and Securities Studies Programme (ISSSP) of the Bengaluru-based NIAS (National Institute of Advance Studies) in his address spoke about the challenges that space sector faces in India. "What ISRO is doing today, it should have done 10-15 years ago," said Nagappa, who served the Indian Space Research Organisation from several decades, starting the 1960s.

He claimed in India, various departments of the government, "worked in silos" as far as space programme was concerned unlike "the multidisciplinary approach in China". The M L Sondhi memorial award was given to ISSSP. Nagappa also said that cybersecurity was one important area where the country really needs to work, and it would be difficult to tell how the cyberspace threats will spell out in the future.

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