by Admiral L. Ramdas [1]
March 22, 2005

“Three fourths of the miseries and misunderstandings in the world will disappear, if we step into the shoes of the adversaries and understand their standpoint”
–Mahatma Gandhi

Having been through two and a half wars against Pakistan, and nothing to show for it, except lost friends, widows and orphaned children on both sides of the fence; the futility of wars as a means to resolve issues became increasingly clear. The reason for this failure is because a political issue needs a political solution and not a military one. Every meeting and every kind of interaction that I have had with people in both countries over the past eleven years has reinforced this demand.

It is a given that the context understanding of security issues is a socio-political one. But in turn it is now well recognized that insecurity also makes development difficult and at times impossible. The insecurity in Kashmir, which in turn is linked both to socio-economic difficulties in that region and distorted development and nuclear insecurities South Asia is a case in point. It is, moreover, a case that is connected to global security in a vital way both because of its connections to the questions of nuclear weapons and of the context of terrorism in the region.

Download the entire paper


  1. Admiral Ramdas (retired) was Chief of the Indian Navy from 1990 to 1993. This is the summary of a paper prepared as part of the Gandhi Fellows program of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research in Takoma Park, Maryland. ↩ Return