Tag Archives: Iran

Resurgent Iran and its Role in the Region

National Defence College, New Delhi, September 8, 2015

Arun Vishwanathan, Assistant Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore

NDC LogoThe lecture outlined the specifics of the Iranian Nuclear Agreement, the verification measures therein and the implications of a resurgent Iran on the region as a whole. The lecture was delivered at the National Defence College, Delhi as part of the Course to senior officers of the Indian defence services, civil services, police, other departments in addition to officers from over twenty friendly foreign countries.

Troubling Tehran in Iran Review

Iran Review Website: Book Review Section

Arun Vishwanathan, Assistant Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies and Rajaram Nagappa, Head, International Strategic and Security Studies Programme, NIAS

Troubling TehranThe leading website studying Iranian developments (Iran Review) has listed ISSSP’s book Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics. The book joins a select list of publications that the website has shortlisted based on their focus on Iran. 

What is the best approach for resolving differences over the Iranian nuclear programme and preventing a conflict? How would a conflict possibly unravel given Iranian military, asymmetric and missile capabilities? What does a military conflict over Iran mean for international order and India in particular? These are some of the questions that the book, Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics analyses and seeks answers to.

The book can be bought from Flipkart | Bookadda | Amazon | Amazon India
For more details on the book click here

Book Review: Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics

Strategic Analysis, Vol. 38, No. 3, May 2014, pp. 376-378.

Aditi Malhotra, Senior Research Fellow, National Institute of Advanced Studies

strat analysisThe ever dynamic nuclear conundrum of Iran has continued to hog the limelight. Numerous suggestions emanating from varied quarters about how to manage the issue have dominated the ongoing international discourse. However, there is no unanimity on how to cope with the current situation and the impending future.

Surprisingly, in the Indian context, where Iran’s importance is undeniable, the debates have remained limited and incomprehensive. Troubling Tehran is a book that seeks to address this lacuna and trigger an Indian cogitation on Iran and the prognosis.

For the complete book review click here
The book can be bought from Flipkart | Bookadda | Amazon | Amazon India

Iran and P5+1 Geneva Agreement: A Game Changer?

The Diplomatist, Vol. 2, Issue 3, March 2014

Arun Vishwanathan, Assistant Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies

diplomatist cover

Copyright: The Diplomatist

The interim agreement signed on November 24, 2013 at Geneva by Iran and the P5+1 and its subsequent operationalisation (January 20, 2014) highlights a remarkable shift the situation surrounding Iran has undergone over the past few months. The agreement is being perceived as a major departure in American policy towards Iran and the region in general. However, close observers would be quick in pointing out that such a shift has been some time in the making. The US move to enter into a dialogue with Tehran has largely been the result of a desire to buy more time to address the concerns regarding Iran’s nuclear programme through verification and roll back any probable progress Iran has made in building a nuclear weapon.

The deal also underscores the US’s endeavour to balance its efforts to push back Tehran’s regional rise on one hand,and build bridges of some kind after a hiatus of over three decades on the other. Taking a bird’s eye-view of the overall geo-political scenario, the move stems from the growing dissonance between US and its allies (Saudi Arabia and Israel) on major issues like the Israel-Palestine conflict, Syrian civil war and chemical weapons issue, as well as the handling of the Arab Spring aftermath.

For the complete article (in PDF) click here

Prof. Mohammed Ayoob on Geostrategic Significance of the Arab Spring

Prof. Mohammed Ayoob, University Distinguished Professor Emeritus of International Relations, Michigan State University visited the International Strategic and Security Studies Programme (ISSSP), National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS) Bangalore on February 10, 2014. He interacted with the ISSSP faculty and research staff.

Later in the evening he delivered a public lecture on the topic Geostrategic Significance of the Arab Spring.

Abstract of the Public Lecture by Prof. Mohammed Ayoob

The unfolding drama of the Arab Spring has demonstrated that it was not as autonomous a process as it appeared at first sight – that it was not merely a struggle between the forces of democratization and authoritarianism, the good guys and the bad guys. More often than not external powers, both regional and extra-regional, determined the outcomes of these uprisings to a much greater degree than did the local forces: Yemen (Saudi Arabia and the US), Libya (NATO), Bahrain (Saudi Arabia), even Egypt (US, Saudi Arabia, Israel) demonstrate the veracity of this proposition. This has become clear above all in Syria with the US, Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies, supporting the opposition and Iran and Russia supporting the regime. The Saudi-Iranian, US-Iranian, and US-Russian proxy wars are in full swing in Syria making the conflict intractable. Consequently, what started as domestic processes of democratic transformation in many of the countries have become hostage to multiple proxy wars going on in the Middle East – between Saudi Arabia and Iran, the US and Iran, Russia and the US. The ironies of these proxy wars are not lost on keen observers of the Middle East, with Saudi Arabia leading the counter-revolutionary brigade when it comes to Bahrain and Egypt but supporting the “democratic” opposition in Syria. External powers support to one side or the other has far less to do with supporting democracy and much more to do with their own strategic objectives in the region.

The audio of Prof. Ayoob’s public lecture as well as pictures of his visit are available below

Audio : Introductory Remarks by Ambassador Saurabh Kumar 

 

Audio : Prof. Mohammed Ayoob’s Public Lecture

 

 

Photos of Prof. Mohammed Ayoob interactions with ISSSP members

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 Photos of Public Lecture by Prof. Mohammed Ayoob at NIAS

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

Round Table: Iran A War has Begun: Day Two

Videos of the Round Table “Iran: A War has Begun”

May 31-June 1, 2013, JRD Tata Auditorium, NIAS Bangalore

Day II: June 1, 2013

Session I

World Dependence on Iranian Oil:

Sanctions and impact on India and ways to alleviate the impact


 

Session I: Discussion and Q & A


 

Roundup and Vote of Thanks

Round Table: Iran A War has Begun: Day One

Videos of the Round Table “Iran: A War has Begun”

May 31-June 1, 2013, JRD Tata Auditorium, NIAS Bangalore

Day I: May 31, 2013

Opening Remarks: Prof. VS Ramamurthy, Director, NIAS

Outlining the concept of the Round Table: Vice Admiral (retd.) Vijay Shankar

Session I

The Nature of this war: Vice Admiral (retd) Vijay Shankar


 

Iranian Nuclear Programme: An overview : Dr. Arun Vishwanathan


 

Technical Aspects of Iranian Nuclear Programme: Dr. LV Krishnan


 

Session I: Discussion and Q&A


 

Session II

Iranian Missile Programme: Prof. Rajaram Nagappa


 

Iran’s Military Capability, Asymmetric warfare & its efficacy : Vice Admiral (retd.) PJ Jacob


 

Iran: An Insider’s Account: Dr. Masoud Imani Kalesar


 

Session II: Discussion and Q & A


 

 

Troubling Tehran: Book discussion at IPCS, New Delhi

Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, New Delhi, 30 April 2013

Rajaram Nagappa, Head, International Strategic and Security Studies Programme

Arun Vishwanathan, Assistant Professor, International Strategic and Security Studies Programme

IPCS

Copyright: IPCS, New Delhi

The Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies organised a discussion on the book Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics co-edited by Arun Vishwanathan and Rajaram Nagappa. The discussants were Dr. Manpreet Sethi, ICSSR Senior Fellow, Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS), New Delhi and Prof. Anwar Alam, Center for West Asian Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia. Apart from the editors, two contributors to the book, Dr. LV Krishnan and Vice Admiral Vijay Shankar also participated in the discussions.

The discussion tried to highlight the central focus of the book, which was to foster a discussion which brought in an Indian perspective on Iran, with respect to its nuclear and military capabilities and its implications for India.

Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics

Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics, Pentagon Press, 2013, pp.xviii+140, ISBN: 978-81-8274-723-4

Editors: Arun Vishwanathan and Rajaram Nagappa

The book can be bought from Flipkart | Bookadda | Amazon | Amazon India

Troubling TehranWhat is the best approach for resolving differences over the Iranian nuclear programme and preventing a conflict? How would a conflict possibly unravel given Iranian military, asymmetric and missile capabilities? What does a military conflict over Iran mean for international order and India in particular? These are some of the questions that the book, Troubling Tehran: Reflections on Geopolitics analyses and seeks answers to.

The Iranian nuclear programme is a complex subject plagued by fundamental differences on how best to resolve it. While some advocate diplomacy and economic sanctions as a way forward, others push for a military response arguing that pursuing diplomacy provides Iran additional time to achieve a break-out capability. However, military coercion may not yield desired results, given the dispersed nature of Iranian nuclear facilities. A strike in fact is likely to accelerate Iranian nuclear weaponisation programme. The recent sanctioning of Iran’s oil sector adds to the regime’s cup of woes which is already overflowing due to a host of economic problems. However, the jury is still out on the question of whether sanctions would spark public disaffection against the regime.

The implications of a military conflict involving Iran are serious for Asia, particularly India. About 85 percent of Iranian oil exports are eastward bound. Dependence on crude and natural gas imports from the Middle East and North Africa region including Iran poses a dilemma for Indian policy makers. New Delhi thus needs to strike a fine balance while basing its policy on realpolitik and national interest.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction – Arun Vishwanathan and Rajaram Nagappa
  2. Iran: A War has Begun – Vijay Shankar
  3. Iran’s Nuclear Programme: Where is it headed? –  Arun Vishwanathan
  4. Iran’s Nuclear Activities: A Technical Appraisal of Declared Intentions and Reality – L V Krishnan
  5. Iran’s Missile Capabilities – Rajaram Nagappa and S. Chandrashekar
  6. Iran’s Military Capability, Asymmetric Warfare and its Efficacy – P J Jacob
  7. Iran: An Insider’s Account – Masoud Imani Kalesar
  8. World Dependence on Iranian Oil: Sanctions on Iran and Impact on India – V Raghuraman
  9. Iran: The Road Ahead – K C Singh
  10. Conclusion and Recommendations – Arun Vishwanathan and Rajaram Nagappa

Arun Vishwanathan is Assistant Professor, International Strategic and Security Studies Programme, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore.

Rajaram Nagappa is Head, International Strategic and Security Studies Programme, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore.

Iran’s Safir Launch Vehicle

Iran’s Safir Launch Vehicle

Authors: Rajaram Nagappa, S. Chandrashekar, Lalitha Sundaresan and N. Ramani

To read complete report in pdf click here

Irans-Safir-lanch-Vechicle-Report-150x150Iran joined a select group of nations having indigenous satellite launch capability, when it orbited its Omid satellite on the night of February 02, 2009 on board its indigenously developed launch vehicle Safir 2. The event was widely covered in the media and images and video footage of the launch have been posted on the internet.

The launch images confirm the first stage pedigree with the North Korean Nodong missile. The fin shape, the jet vane control system and the exhaust plume signature of the Nodong and Safir first stage are quite similar. North Korea has sold and transferred the technology of this missile to Iran, where it is known as Shahab 3B. (It may be noted that the Pakistani missile Ghauri has a similar linkage to Nodong missile). From the nozzle exhaust signature, it is clear that a single engine (and not a cluster of 2 or 4 engines) is employed for the first stage.

From measurements on the Safir images the length of the first stage is about 15 m. This length includes the engine, the oxidizer and fuel tanks. Our earlier measurement of engine length on the Shahab 3 missile was seen to be 2.25 m. Taking this length for the Safir engine and making allowances for the engine-tank interface as well as the space between the oxidizer and fuel tanks, the total tank length is estimated to be 11.8 m — longer than the tank length of 9.3 m in Shahab3A and 11 m in Shahab 3B, resulting in improved propellant loading. From this, the propellant and the total stage mass have been estimated to be 18.6 tonnes and 21.6 tonnes respectively.

Observation of the Safir launch vehicle images indicated that the diameter of the second stage is the same as the first stage. The total length of the second stage including the interface with stage 1, the engine and the nozzle is about 4.2 m.

The launcher can easily be converted into a two stage missile. Using the derived values of stage and propellant masses and assuming a 1000 kg warhead, the achieved range works out to 2400 km. This would enable Iran to target all parts of the Middle East, parts of Europe and certainly large parts of India from a south eastern location. With the launch of the Safir/Omid mission, Iran has demonstrated core launch vehicle technology capabilities.

Conducting Academic and Policy Research related to National and International Security Issues
Sign up for Updates

Enter your email below



We will not share your email