The World’s First Nuclear War?:
The World’s First Nuclear War?: India is doing everything it can to at least give the impression that war with Pakistan is imminent. Considering that there is cross border shelling and a very real level of hostility between both nations, the possibility of war is not that farfetched.
That raises the specter of nuclear war. Conventional wisdom says that eventually India’s military would win a conventional battle with Pakistan and then Pakistan would be at India’s mercy. Many people think that if that were to happen, Musharraf would nuke India and India would respond with a nuclear strike of their own.
Once you consider this scenario, suddenly a nuclear first strike seems much more plausible from both nation’s perspectives. If you’re Musharraf and you think war is inevitable, why should you wait for the defeat of your conventional forces to launch? Why not hit India first with nuclear strikes and then quickly rush in with your conventional forces hoping to stop or at least minimize India’s capacity to hit you back? If India truly intends to crush Pakistan, a first strike actually makes more sense than a conventional attack. Since Pakistan probably doesn’t have a second strike capability, why not hit them first and hope that they’re not able to hit you back? That certainly makes much more sense than overwhelming them conventionally and waiting to get hit with 25 nukes before you fire off your own arsenal.
Of course, these are insane nightmare scenarios. But, these scenarios could very easily become reality. If India makes the decision that they’re really going to invade, nuclear war will actually become LIKELY. But, even if India really doesn’t intend to invade, if Pakistan BELIEVES an attack is imminent, then we could see a first strike by either side. This situation is actually much more dangerous than most people realize and we should hope that tens of millions of people don’t end up losing their lives in a final tragic war between Pakistan and India.