20 Years After Kargil: The Future of Strategic (In)Stability in Southern Asia
On March 12, 2019, the Stimson South Asia program organized a side session at the 2019 Carnegie International Nuclear Policy Conference: "20 Years After Kargil: The Future of Strategic (In)Stability in Southern Asia."
In 1999, India and Pakistan faced an inter-state crisis in the disputed Kargil region and potentially readied nuclear arsenals, but managed to deescalate without nuclear use. This was the first time overt nuclear powers had gone to war in thirty years and only the second time in history. Two decades later, scholars and practitioners are still grappling with whether this conflict was the product of miscalculation or organizational pathologies, or whether it was a rational response to a power transition. Since the Kargil crisis, evolving developments in doctrine, technology, domestic politics, and great-power competition have impacted strategic (in)stability in Southern Asia and the Indian Ocean Region and will continue to do so. In this increasingly nuclearized, multipolar environment, one power’s expanding interests, modernization programs, or balancing efforts might trigger conflict spirals by exacerbating security dilemmas or encroaching on rivals’ spheres of influence. Panelists will assess the various domains of competition and distill the causes, dynamics, and implications for nuclear policy.
Hannah Haegeland, Research Analyst, Stimson Center South Asia Program
Sameer Lalwani, Director & Senior Fellow, Stimson Center South Asia Program
Frank O’Donnell, Postdoctoral Fellow, National Security Affairs Department, U.S. Naval War College
Negeen Pegahi, Assistant Professor, Strategic and Operational Research Department, U.S. Naval War College
Diana Wueger, Faculty Associate for Research, Department of National Security Affairs, Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California; PhD student, University of Chicago