Twenty years after India and Pakistan tested nuclear weapons, observers continue to brace themselves during every crisis between these two nuclear-armed rivals for the possibility of severe escalation. Major interstate India-Pakistan crises began at the initial partition of colonial India and have always raised concerns from international observers due to the size of both countries and their formidable conventional capabilities. South Asian crises took a distinctly ominous turn in the 1980s, particularly with the 1986-87 Brasstacks crisis, when it became clear that both sides were developing nuclear arsenals. Crisis anxiety advanced into dread after both countries tested nuclear weapons in 1998. While the subcontinent has since experienced nearly incessant cross-border fire, interstate raids and skirmishes, and even a militarized conflict that many scholars classify as a war, the region has thus far managed to evade major escalation to full-scale conventional war and accompanying pressures to pursue nuclear use. Some analysts attribute this successful avoidance to deterrence, others to chance, and still others to third-party intervention.1Sumit Ganguly and Devin T. Hagerty, Fearful Symmetry: India-Pakistan Crises in the Shadow of Nuclear Weapons (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2005); Vipin Narang, “Posturing for Peace? South Asia’s Nuclear Postures and South Asian Stability,” International Security 34, no. 3 (2009/10): 38-78; Michael Krepon, “The Myth of Deterrence Stability Between Nuclear-Armed Rivals,” in Deterrence Instability and Nuclear Weapons in South Asia, ed. Michael Krepon, Joshua T. White, Julia Thompson, Shane Mason (Washington, D.C.: Stimson Center, 2015), 15-41; and Moeed Yusuf, Brokering Peace in Nuclear Environments: U.S. Crisis Management in South Asia (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2018).

Nevertheless, the frequency of kinetic exchange, whether through cross-border fire or subconventional aggression, creates a large-looming and constant risk of a crisis, and any incident between two nuclear powers with a rivalry as old and bitter as India and Pakistan’s demands greater attention and scrutiny. After all, based on the Interstate Crisis Behavior dataset, the India-Pakistan rivalry has produced more crises than any other dyad excluding the former U.S.-Soviet rivalry.2Michael Brecher, Jonathan Wilkenfeld, Kyle Beardsley, Patrick James, and David Quinn, International Crisis Behavior Data Codebook, version 12 (Durham and Los Angeles: International Crisis Behavior (ICB) Project, 2017), http://sites.duke.edu/icbdata/data-collections. Though the ICB Project employs a different definition and criteria to code an interstate “crisis” than some of the authors in this publication, it is noteworthy that it includes 13 crises between India-Pakistan, second only to the U.S.-USSR dyad of 23 crises, and more frequent than crises between historic rivals like the France-Germany, Germany-U.K., Israel-Egypt, Israel-Syria, North Korea– South Korea, and Angola–South Africa.

Dangerous Background Conditions, Increasing Risks

Recent geopolitical, economic, military, and social trends suggest a need for more concern than at any time since the 2008 Mumbai attack about renewed crisis onset, escalation, and instability between India and Pakistan. South Asia has returned as a site of numerous intersecting fault lines and contestations over the past five years. Both the Obama administration’s “rebalance” to Asia and the Trump administration’s “Indo-Pacific” strategies have claimed India as a critical piece on the geopolitical chessboard. China has expanded its diplomatic, economic, and military presence in South Asia and behaved more aggressively toward India. New Delhi’s need to balance against Beijing and India’s aspirations for enhanced status to match its growing economic strength have propelled it to court “dehyphenation” from Pakistan in international relations. As a rising major power, India rejects being treated in the same club as Pakistan and therefore eschews many types of bilateral engagement.3For more details on the logic of dehyphenation, see Ashley J. Tellis, “The Merits of Dehyphenation: Explaining U.S. Success in Engaging India and Pakistan,” The Washington Quarterly 31, no. 4 (2008): 21-42. These ambitions, alongside the downward spiral in India-Pakistan relations and demise of sustained “back channel” negotiations, have eroded most public mechanisms of dialogue and communication – previous conduits for stemming disinformation and controlling spiraling misperceptions.4Steve Coll, “The Back Channel: India and Pakistan’s Secret Kashmir Talks,” The New Yorker, March 2, 2009; and Kallol Battacherjee, “Revive Back Channel Talks, Say Former Envoys,” The Hindu, April 30, 2016.

In the past five years, ceasefire violations and cross-border activity have steadily risen, increased public agitation and political violence have generated new waves of instability in Kashmir, and the politics of religious majoritarianism mixed with nationalism have intensified.5See data from South Asia Terrorism Portal at http://www.satp.org/satporgtp/countries/india/states/jandk/data_sheets/index.html; and “Religious Majoritarianism on the Subcontinent: Impacts on Domestic Tranquility and Regional Security” (event held at the Stimson Center, Washington, D.C., July 27, 2017), https://www.stimson.org/content/religious-majoritarianism-subcontinent-impacts-domestic-tranquility-and-regional-security. India and Pakistan have also traded accusations of subconventional warfare after recent terrorist attacks on security forces in Indian-controlled Punjab and portions of the Kashmir region and after horrific attacks on soft targets in Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Baluchistan provinces.

Even though there has not been a major war in 50 years, South Asia remains one of the most crisis-prone regions in the world with some of the highest levels of contested borders, militarized interstate disputes, and terrorist attacks. India and Pakistan’s continued expansion of their fissile material stockpiles and nuclear arsenals and modernization of their conventional forces add layers of risk, especially in periods of power transitions.

At the same time, it is important to maintain perspective. Key Indian and Pakistani decision-makers genuinely do not want war, and many of these concerning trends are not entirely new. Surveying past crisis episodes can provide instructive lessons and help anticipate future challenges while also reminding us that many of the seemingly novel features of contemporary crises have played out before.

For instance, many contemporary observers treat the current Indian government’s approach to cross-border terrorism as “unprecedented and audacious.”6Nitin A. Gokhale, Securing India the Modi Way: Pathankot, Surgical Strikes and More (New Delhi: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2017), 37. Analysts have either lauded considerations of Indian airstrikes on Pakistan’s territory or claims of cross-border “surgical strikes” as doctrinal innovations or condemned such actions as dangerous new escalations.7For a range of assessments, see Gokhale, Securing India the Modi Way, 38-52; Sandeep Unnithan, “Why India Didn’t Strike Pakistan after 26/11,” India Today, October 14, 2015; Vipin Narang, “The Lines That Have Been Crossed,” The Hindu, October 4, 2016; and Toby Dalton and George Perkovich, “Pakistan and India: The Art of Peace,” The Herald, September 21, 2016. It is worth remembering, however, that both options were openly discussed at the highest levels nearly three decades ago during the 1990 Compound crisis. Chari, Cheema, and Cohen recount:

The BJP’s [Bharatiya Janata Party’s] national executive committee passed a resolution urging the Indian government to “knock out the training camps and transit routes of the terrorists.” This stance was supported by the party’s contention that: “Pakistan’s many provocations amount to so many acts of war today. It is literally carrying on a war against India on Indian territory.” The BJP further argued that the doctrine of “hot pursuit is a recognized defensive measure.”8P.R. Chari, Pervaiz Iqbal Cheema, and Stephen P. Cohen, Four Crises and a Peace Process: American Engagement in South Asia (Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press, 2007), 75.

This being said, Indian demand for cross-border strikes and hot pursuit can play out very differently among a host of new variables on both sides including enhanced intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities, advanced air defense systems, standoff precision-strike weapons, and short-range nuclear delivery systems, all of which add new challenges and risks to crises than previously experienced on the subcontinent.

These background conditions increase the likelihood of an interstate crisis and thus warrant more vigorous investigations of crisis dynamics and behavior so that all parties can stave off the most dangerous consequences. For over 25 years, the Stimson Center has closely studied the cadence and dynamics of South Asian crises to better inform policymakers in New Delhi, Islamabad, Washington, D.C., and even Beijing. Much of this research has focused on nuclear risk reduction, escalation control, and crisis management measures. These studies have included deep dives into the 1990 Compound crisis, the 2001-2 Twin Peaks crisis, and the 2008 Mumbai crisis.9See for example Polly Nayak and Michael Krepon, The Unfinished Crisis: US Crisis Management after the 2008 Mumbai Attacks (Washington, D.C.: Stimson Center, 2012); Polly Nayak and Michael Krepon, US Crisis Management in South Asia’s Twin Peaks Crisis (Washington, D.C.: Stimson Center, 2006); and Michael Krepon and Mishi Faruqee, Conflict Prevention and Confidence-Building Measures in South Asia: The 1990 Crisis, Occasional Paper no. 17 (Washington, D.C.: Stimson Center, 1994). Given the ominous indicators described above, policymakers would benefit from taking stock of lessons from past crisis episodes distilled by scholars and practitioners. This volume continues that tradition with close empirical study of crisis behavior to better understand the causal processes, patterns, and lessons extracted from previous crises on the subcontinent.

Book Objectives

In developing this project, we aimed to explore five key themes in unpacking crises on the subcontinent: (1) the prospect for detection of behavioral patterns and early warning of a crisis, (2) the domestic strategies and processes for crisis management, (3) the role of and receptivity toward third-party intervention, (4) the lessons distilled from multiple crises over two decades, and (5) how evolving environments might reshape future crises differently from conventional templates. Each of the chapters in this volume explores at least one of these themes, and most investigated more than one.

The chapters in this volume also uncovered some relatively new or evolving features in contemporary crises in terms of actors, stakes, and disrupters. These included new actors playing a larger role in regional affairs. Certainly China is not a newcomer to South Asia, but its expanded presence through enhanced defense relationships, trade and investment strategies, political influence, and forward military presence has increased its stake and risk exposure in the region, potentially incentivizing it to play a larger role in South Asian crises than it has in the past.10See Michael Krepon, Travis Wheeler, and Shane Mason, The Lure &Pitfalls of MIRVs: From the First to the Second Nuclear Age (Washington, D.C.: Stimson Center, 2016); the special series “Southern (Dis)Comfort” hosted by War on the Rocks at https:// warontherocks.com/category/special-series/southern-discomfort; and the various essays for the Stimson Center Off Ramps Initiative, https://www.stimson.org/content/off-ramps. This volume explores China’s role as not only a third-party mediator but also as a direct participant and even combatant in a future South Asian crisis.

The chapters also factored in new and evolving interests, particularly for the United States, which may opt for a less forward role in future crisis management.11For instance, National Security Advisor General McMaster was quoted saying: “[t]he consensus view has been that engagement overseas is an unmitigated good, regardless of the circumstances…But there are problems that are maybe both intractable and of marginal interest to the American people, that do not justify investments of blood and treasure.” See Mark Landler, “Trump, the Insurgent, Breaks with 70 Years of American Foreign Policy,” The New York Times, December 28, 2017. Even under the Obama administration, the United States began to decrease its emphasis on nonproliferation and counterterrorism goals – mainstays of U.S. policy in South Asia for almost two decades. Instead the United States prioritized building a partnership with India for New Delhi to play a more active balancing role on the Eurasian landmass, invariably eroding U.S. willingness and ability to play a credible neutral mediator role in future South Asian crises.

Additionally, this volume paid close attention to new disrupters in South Asian crises. One of these is of course the media (including social media), which has been utilized for disinformation, polarization, hand tying, and potentially also signaling. Other disrupters in this process are new strategic platforms (e.g., sea-based nuclear weapons) and doctrines (e.g., “surgical strikes”) that potentially reshape how crises emerge and escalate (e.g., through accidents or through fears of preemption), and can compress windows for decision-making or intervention – making choices difficult even under ideal circumstances.

This ten-chapter edited volume assesses South Asian crises from 1987-2017 and considers implications for the future of crisis management on the subcontinent. Contributors range from seasoned retired diplomats to journalists and academics. The analysis presented features an eclectic mix of methodologies and data sources that include studies drawing upon new event datasets, Chinese-language strategic journals, scenario planning and net assessment models, interviews with strategic elites, and de facto participant observation through policy practitioner reflections on their crisis-management experiences. Harnessing multiple and mixed methodologies reveals a great deal, and we expect this approach to remain useful for future research on South Asian strategic and conflict dynamics.

This illuminates the roles played by third parties, the fourth estate, learning (and non-learning) organizations, arms buildups, institutionalized mechanisms of communication, confidence building measures, non-crises, and emerging disruptive trends. Overall, the chapters express a mix of optimism and pessimism. The pessimism stems from the expectation of future crises and the relative lack of preparedness by all parties, but optimism exists with possible roles for third parties and potential revitalized communication and dialogue mechanisms to mitigate and manage crises.

Organization of the Volume

As indicated in the title, this collection of essays explores South Asian crises in terms of past lessons, evolving dynamics, and future trajectories by examining all stages from onset to termination as well as prospects for crisis prevention and conflict resolution.

In “Anatomy of a Crisis: Hypotheses on India-Pakistan Crisis Onset,” Sameer Lalwani and Hannah Haegeland propose potential conditions under which a state might perceive a particular provocation, distinct from other provocations, as the beginning of a crisis. Their chapter explicates key crisis attributes and generates a series of hypotheses involving abnormality, threat level, or time sensitivity surrounding the provocation that might influence escalation to a crisis. In order to identify some of the correlates of crisis onset, they then proceed to test these hypotheses on a new dataset of interstate provocations between 1998-2016, only some of which escalated into actual “crises.” The authors find that conventional explanations of crises such as lethality, target type, geography, and intentionality are less powerful correlates than commonly thought. Instead, they find that a crisis is ultimately a political choice shaped by certain features of the trigger event like complexity and duration along with surrounding atmospheric conditions of political leadership, media coverage, and ongoing bilateral relations. With a better look at the anatomy of the incipient stages of crises, this chapter offers a “red flag” analysis to help policymakers anticipate crisis onset and control escalation. 

Shyam Saran’s chapter, “Organizing for Crisis Management: Evaluating India’s Experience in Three Case Studies,” draws on his personal experience with crisis management at the highest levels of the Indian government, including as Foreign Secretary. Saran lays out three case studies of crises handled by the Indian government — one that was deemed a success (the 2004 Iraq hostage crisis) and two whose handlings were deemed failures (the 2008 Mumbai crisis and 2016 Pathankot attack). In the successful case, the government followed established structures and procedures for crisis management; in the failed cases, the government mishandled the crises by abandoning the in-place crisis management architecture in favor of an ad hoc system, likely because those two crises were deemed more politically sensitive. In the future, Saran argues, the Indian government must not stray from established protocols for crisis management and instead should work to improve them through governance reforms, constant evaluation of past and present actions, and a comprehensive whole-of-government national security doctrine.

Riaz Mohammad Khan’s chapter, “Conflict Resolution and Crisis Management: Challenges in Pakistan-India Relations,” makes the case for a more systematized and institutionalized approach to crisis management. Though India and Pakistan have successfully managed crises and avoided major escalation, the ad hoc nature of these high-level bilateral crisis engagements leaves too much room for error or miscalculation, and the dangers of crisis escalation persist. Differing political narratives, intractable territorial disputes, and newly developing strategic doctrines all present great risks to both the normalization of bilateral relations and the containment and prevention of future crises. To contend with these issues, Khan suggests both India and Pakistan should work toward maintaining open and institutionalized channels of communication, strengthening existing confidence-building measures while developing new ones, and reviving a conflict resolution dialogue.

Saikat Datta’s chapter, “Intelligence, Strategic Assessment, and Decision Process Deficits: The Absence of Indian Learning from Crisis to Crisis,” offers a scathing critique of the organizational pathologies that have continuously hampered the Indian intelligence and national security establishment’s management of crises with Pakistan. Failures to obtain or process accurate intelligence, produce strategic assessments for effective responses, and clearly control messages between crisis management actors and domestic and international audiences are vulnerabilities that have not been addressed since the national security breakdowns leading to the 1962 India-China War. The same operational failures that troubled India during the 1999 Kargil War and 2008 Mumbai crisis persisted in the 2016 Uri attack. The Indian government’s responses to these re-occurring deficiencies of its security apparatus have been slow and unimaginative. Review committees have clearly offered lessons given their diagnoses of failure, but this learning has not penetrated the strategic establishment, which struggles to implement basic operational measures like a clear delineation of constituent roles. Datta contends that a coordinated process for responding to bilateral crises rests upon implementation of high-level reforms learned from past failures.

Ruhee Neog’s chapter, “Self-Referencing the News: Media, Policymaking, and Public Opinion in India-Pakistan Crises,” offers a timely account of the historic and evolving role that the media plays in bilateral crises. The Indian media, government, and public all interact with each other during crises to form self-referential news cycles; each limits and motivates certain actions from the other while navigating their own unique internal constraints (e.g., profit motives in media and diplomatic concerns in government). In general, however, information dissemination during times of crisis is ultimately dictated by the government and policy elites to the media, which then frame the discussion based on public demands. While the media does not have any direct impact on crisis policymaking, it does have a role in communicating and framing government actions to the general public, in turn shifting the state of democratic politics and civil society to indirectly affect national security policies. In particular, Neog finds that the media will amplify the narratives of nationalistic unified governments while criticizing those of weak and ineffective governments.

Zafar Khan’s chapter, “Crisis Management in Nuclear South Asia: A Pakistani Perspective,” argues that the introduction of nuclear weapons in South Asia has successfully decreased the likelihood of large-scale war between India and Pakistan, as shown during the 1999 Kargil conflict, the 2008 Mumbai crisis, and the 2016 Uri, Pathankot, and Nagrota attacks. However, nuclear weapons have not prevented the outbreak of bilateral crises that arise from the region’s most intractable problems (Kashmir and terrorism). Because solutions to these issues are unlikely in the short term, it is imperative that both India and Pakistan continue to improve their crisis management mechanisms in order to mitigate the harm from inevitable future crises. The two countries – in concert with international actors (most importantly the United States and China) – should also work to improve confidence-building measures and begin discussion of a regional arms control regime until the long-standing issues between the two nations can be resolved.

China and Crisis Management in South Asia

Yun Sun and Hannah Haegeland

The chapter by Yun Sun and Hannah Haegeland, “China and Crisis Management in South Asia,” reviews the history of China’s interests and involvement in South Asian crises. The unfolding strategic competition in Southern Asia has shifted dynamics of crisis escalation and management on the subcontinent and the broader Indian Ocean region. Today, a deep study of India-Pakistan crises and crisis management requires more substantive attention to the growing role of China. Despite China’s long history of engagement on the subcontinent, during severe India-Pakistan crises, it has largely deferred third-party management to the United States and the international community. The authors posit, however, that China’s third-party involvement in escalation management of South Asian crises has gradually expanded over time. A growing regional and global presence may increase both risks and incentives for even greater Chinese involvement. In a future India-Pakistan crisis, an enhanced Chinese role could play out in some form of joint third-party management with the United States.

The chapter by Michael Krepon and Liv Dowling, “Crisis Intensity and Nuclear Signaling in South Asia,” draws lessons from comparisons of five major “nuclear-tinged” crises in South Asia along several measures of crisis intensity. With this historical context, the authors then examine how evolving nuclear capabilities in Pakistan and India and a shifting international environment will affect crisis management in the future. While the United States will likely remain the pre-eminent actor in South Asian crisis management, China’s growing influence in Pakistan and the declining role of the United States in Afghanistan will likely shape future attempts to avoid uncontrolled escalation on the subcontinent.

Iskander Rehman’s chapter, “New Horizons, New Risks: A Scenario-based Approach to Thinking about the Future of Crisis Stability in South Asia,” projects hypothetical crisis scenarios in South Asia as a thought exercise for policymakers. The first scenario examines the consequences of increased Chinese involvement and exposure in Pakistan through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and a crisis in which the Chinese military risks being drawn into a militarized conflict (rather than as a mediator as Sun and Haegeland consider) between India and Pakistan. The second scenario looks at the consequences of naval nuclear developments in South Asia, along with ambiguous first-use policies, and projects a crisis that begins at sea. In both scenarios, the nature of the crisis and assumptions traditionally baked into management processes are challenged by the introduction of new and highly consequential variables. These exercises may help analysts extract lessons from creative but plausible scenarios by teasing out potential implications from the interaction of strategic realities and disruptive trends.

In the last chapter in this compilation, “New Challenges for Crisis Management,” Michael Krepon highlights the most likely contingencies for future India-Pakistan crises and identifies indications and warning signs indicative of an impending crisis. He surveys U.S. strategic and regional interests that could be placed at risk in a severe crisis – interests that led the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations to play a very active role in crisis management. He then offers a wide-ranging notional crisis management “playbook” that could be adapted for use if Washington were to adopt an activist role in a future crisis.

Gaps in Analysis and a Future Research Agenda

Invariably, there are always analysis gaps in an endeavor such as this one, some of which we anticipated and some that we discovered closer to completion of this volume. These gaps reveal scope for future research on how economic consequences, public attitudes, and new technology can shape crisis onset, dynamics, and outcomes.

The economics of crises offers one avenue for further exploration. Conflict is generally costly because it destroys productive infrastructure and human capital or consumes it for unproductive activity. A protracted crisis or tension can deter investment, trigger capital flight, suspend trade, and undermine confidence in markets, all of which have extremely negative impacts on a nation’s economy. Thus, empirically examining losses, opportunity costs, or risk premiums that the subcontinent has suffered during periodic crises and from constant tensions offers an intriguing angle for future research.12Sameer Lalwani, “Danger Zone: Posturing Against Pakistan Can Be Costly for India,” Hindustan Times, September 23, 2015. An example of this in another dyad is Raymond Fisman, Yasushi Hamao, and Yongxiang Wang, “Nationalism and Economic Exchange: Evidence from Shocks to Sino-Japanese Relations,” The Review of Financial Studies 27, no. 9 (2014): 2,626-60.

Another element of crisis ripe for further systematic analysis would be the role of domestic audiences and pressures. These elements tend to be implicitly or anecdotally a part of most accounts of crises but are rarely assessed for actual impact on decision-making. Neog’s chapter on the role of the media touches upon this subject, but more work is required. There is evidence to suggest that both the Indian and Pakistani publics are growing increasingly hawkish, attentive to foreign policy, and cavalier about the prospects for conflict or even the use of nuclear weapons.13Benjamin A. Valentino and Scott D. Sagan, “Atomic Attraction,” The Indian Express, June 3, 2016; “Gilani Weekly Poll: Cyberletter, Week 208,” Gallup Pakistan, February 2-4, 2015, http://gallup.com.pk/bb_old_site/News/208.pdf; and “Opinion Poll: International, India,” Gallup Pakistan, Press Release, January 3, 2017, http://gallup.com.pk/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/3-January2017-English-1.pdf. At the same time, since economic issues tend to dominate voting behavior in both countries, it is possible that escalation risks or economic costs might mitigate such pressures instead. Understanding the role and directions of South Asian public attitudes in crisis could help policymakers anticipate and potentially manage domestic pressures.

A third area for study is how new technology being incorporated into both militaries will impact crises. Technology is often recognized as disruptive, but we have yet to fully appreciate how new military technologies might create jumps in risk during a crisis. Will the adoption of non-kinetic cyber offensives or cyber disinformation campaigns still provoke crises? This may return us to a period similar to the 1990 Compound crisis when fear, uncertainty, and political weakness were sufficient to spark a crisis without a major kinetic triggering event. As both militaries adopt pieces of the military-technical revolution in the name of modernization, will their strategies and doctrines generally drift toward false optimism that increases their proclivity for crises as well as escalation?14On elements of the military-technical revolution, see Eliot Cohen, “A Revolution in Warfare.” Foreign Affair 75, no. 2 (1996): 37-54. On false optimism, see Geoffrey Blainey, The Causes of War, 3rd ed. (New York: Free Press, 1988), 35-56. Will enhanced speed reduce the space for quality tactical and strategic decision-making? Will enhanced precision and standoff distance increase hubris over escalation control and calibration cutting through the fog and friction of war?15On fog and friction of war, see Carl von Clausewitz, On War, ed. and trans. Michael Howard and Peter Paret (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1976), 75-89. The impact of evolving technology on South Asian crisis dynamics and behavior deserves more serious attention.16For assessments of how technological advancements are reshaping potential crisis dynamics in the U.S.-China relationship, see Caitlin Talmadge, “Would China Go Nuclear? Assessing the Risk of Chinese Nuclear Escalation in a Conventional War with the United States,” International Security 41, no. 4 (2017): 50-92; and Stephen Biddle and Ivan Oelrich, “Future Warfare in the Western Pacific: Chinese Antiaccess/Area Denial, U.S. AirSea Battle, and Command of the Commons in East Asia,” International Security 41, no. 1 (2016): 7-48.

Despite these gaps, this book offers a rare, wide-angle lens investigating South Asian crises from multiple vantage points, analytical approaches, and data sources. It provides plenty of new empirical evidence and mixed-method analysis for readers to contemplate, policymakers to utilize, and future scholars to build upon. We hope this continues the Stimson tradition of contributing rigorous analysis for pragmatic solutions to some of the world’s most intractable problems.

Acknowledgements

This book would not have been possible without the exceptional editorial support work of Craig Scanlan and Vinod Kannuthurai and varied research and copyedit support by Eyal Hanfling, Hamza Shad, Emily Tallo, Zoe Jordan, Gaurav Kalwani, Kevin Laveling, Travis Wheeler, Akriti Vasudeva, Sam Mooney, Allyson Rimmer, Roushon Talcott, and Gillian Gayner. The editors also wish to thank our tireless designer Lita Ledesma and the Stimson communications team of Jim Baird and Audel Shokohzadeh. Most of all, the editors are indebted to the intrepid and indomitable Michael Krepon for his wise counsel, insights, and contributions throughout the development of this volume.

Sameer Lalwani
January 2018

Sameer Lalwani is a Senior Associate and Co-Director of the South Asia Program at the Stimson Center where he researches deterrence, strategic competition, and counter-insurgency. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the George Washington University (GWU) and was previously a Stanton Nuclear Security Postdoctoral Fellow at the RAND Corporation. Lalwani completed his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Political Science where he was an affiliate of its Security Studies Program. He has conducted extensive fieldwork in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and the British Archives. His work has been published by Security Studies, the Journal of Strategic Studies, Small Wars & Insurgencies, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, CTC Sentinel, The New York Times, RAND, the Cato Institute, Sage, and Oxford University Press. He has had scholarly affiliations with GWU’s Institute for Security and Conflict Studies, the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, Lahore University of Management Sciences, New America, the Tobin Project, the Smith Richardson Foundation, and the Center for New American Security.