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A Shield Against the Bomb : Ballistic Missile Defence in a Nuclear Environment

A. Vinod Kumar is Associate Fellow at Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile.
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  • 2019

    For every major military invention in human history, there has quite always been a countervailing technology. Nuclear weapons have, however, remained an exception. Ballistic missile defence (BMD) has, in recent years, emerged as a formidable means to defend against nuclear-armed delivery systems though yet to prove their total reliability. What does the advent of BMD mean for the nuclear revolution – will it make nuclear weapons obsolete or in turn lead to a new arms race among great powers? This book is a concise volume that examines these strategic dimensions of missile defences, mainly its impact on deterrence. It promises thematic variety by incorporating a technological survey that explains the evolution of BMD concepts and also includes a case study of Southern Asia that throws light on BMD dynamics in a volatile region. The volume balances new conceptual inquests with policy analysis that will make it useful literature on BMD for academics and policymakers.

    About the Author

    A. Vinod Kumar is Associate Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA), and a Visiting Faculty at the Institute of Foreign Policy Studies (IFPS), University of Calcutta, Kolkata. His research interests include nuclear policy issues (including non-proliferation, nuclear energy and deterrence), missile defence and India’s relations with the great powers. Kumar’s first book titled India and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Regime – The Perennial Outlier was published by the Cambridge University Press in April 2014. He has written extensively in acclaimed publications including Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, The National Interest, Strategic Analysis, South Asian Survey, Asia Times, Huffington Post, The Indian Economist and Vayu Aerospace Review, among others. Prior to joining IDSA, Kumar was a journalist with stints in print and audio-visual media platforms and have spearheaded pioneering endeavours in mass communications including the first political public relations campaign in Kerala. He has been a private broadcaster as well as a first generation online journalist and was part of many web ventures, including as Executive Editor of South Asia Monitor – a media diplomacy platform. Kumar was earlier a Fellow at the Indian Pugwash Society. His ongoing study is on the implications of missile defence for nuclear deterrence. Concurrently, he is also spearheading an archival mining effort to trace India’s nuclear and foreign policy history. Kumar is recipient of the Ministry of Defence Madras Medal.
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