Letter from the Editor | April 2023

The unusually high temperature in February and unseasonal rain in March has once again brought home the climate change reality, which we tend to forget or ignore when the going is good. Without sounding the alarmist bugle, it is fair to say that drastic changes in climate will also cause geographical changes and may pose another challenge to matters of national security by way of abundance of certain things and scarcity of others. Perhaps, in the months to come this is another area that we need to explore in FORCE.

The cover focus in this issue is on futuristic technologies, in which the unmanned systems are taking the lead. From total annihilation to no loss of human life, the wars of the future are truly in a civilisationally evolutionary phase. Imagine a conflict without human casualties! Of course, nothing is better than peaceful co-existence, but conflicts without bloodshed would be second best. The cover story ensemble looks at unmanned systems in all the three domains, air, land and sea, with additional focus on non-kinetic domains such as cyber and electromagnetic spectrum. Hopefully, it will lead to thinking amongst the Indian policymakers and defence research organisations.

We also have a special section on Quad. The governments of the Quad partners believe that this military partnership would present a deterrence to China. The countries most affected by China’s irredentism are India and Japan, with former even having a land territorial dispute. Worse, China is in occupation of Indian territory in the north. Hence, the country most affected by any miscalculations of Quad is India, which will likely be pushed into a war not of its choosing. Hence, India needs greater circumspection vis a vis the direction Quad takes, and its position within this conglomeration.

FORCE editor had the opportunity to visit Dhaka last month. While the diary on Bangladesh appears too close to the Indian story for comfort, it has opened up the possibility of more such stories from India’s South Asian neighbourhood. In the coming months, FORCE would try to visit each of India’s neighbouring countries and explore possibilities of greater cooperation for peace and mutual co-existence. After all, war may be the last argument of the kings, we no longer suffer monarchies. In the governments of the people, by the people and for the people, war should not be the option on the table at all.

In addition to that are our regular sections, news updates–both from the defence industry and the armed forces–and a growing books section. Enjoy.



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