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Russian military leaders have expressed concern about US plans
for a national missile defense system. Will defense technology be
limited by possibilities for a strategic imbalance? Is this just SDI
all over again?
(1806 previous messages)
- 02:32am Mar 31, 2001 EST (#1807
-> News -> World -> Full Story Bush govt to take a fresh
look at CTBT
March 30, 2001 20:52 Hrs (IST)
Washington: The Bush administration on Friday virtually reversed
its stand on the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), with its top
arms control official telling a Senate Foreign Relations Committee
that his government would examine it afresh.
Also, the recommendations of former President Bill Clinton's
special advisor General John Shalikashvili favouring ratifying the
CTBT will be examined, he said.
''We are mindful of the work that was done by General John
Shalikashvili. We will examine the work closely. We still believe
that there are flaws with the Treaty as it was voted down (in the
Senate) in 1999. Nonetheless, we will continue to examine the
elements of the Treaty as part of our overall strategic review,''
John R Bolton, Under Secretary designate in the State department on
Arms control said.
Deposing before the committee for his confirmation hearings,
Bolton said President Bush had given an indication to his
administration that he has no intention of resuming nuclear tests.
''We do not see any need for such testing in the foreseeable
future,'' he added.
The Republicans, who ensured that the CTBT was not ratified by
the US Senate way back in 1999, have turned around to say they are
now open to the idea.
After the failure of the measure in the Senate, the then
President Clinton had appointed a committee headed by former Joint
Chief of Staff John Shalikashvili to go into the reservations
expressed by the Republicans on the CTBT.
Dismissing the reservations expressed by the Republicans, the
General, in his report presented early this year, strongly favoured
that the US ratify the treaty.
The ratification of the treaty is in the strategic interest of
the US, he contended in his report. Even during his Presidential
campaign, Bush said the treaty had several flaws, and if elected,
his government would not ask the US Congress to ratify it.
Secretary of State Powell, during his confirmation hearings in
January, reiterated that his administration would not ask the US
Congress to ratify the treaty ''this session''. http://news.indiainfo.com/2001/03/30/30ctbt.html
- 02:35am Mar 31, 2001 EST (#1808
Army swears by `transparency' in defence deals
NEW DELHI: Responding to the Tehelka revelations, the Army on
Friday assured that no single individual could influence a defence
In an elaborate presentation, Army's deputy chief of staff, Lt
General S S Mehta, took reporters through the long procedure
involved in choosing a major piece of defence equipment.
The Army admitted the procurement system could be penetrated --
an indirect reference to the meetings between Tehelka's fake arms
dealers and defence officials. But it asserted that the
`penetration' could have no impact on the final decision on buying
or rejecting a piece of equipment.
He said the arms manufacturers at times tried to use the media to
get back into the reckoning for a contract. They tried to create
delays in the purchase-process, to gain more time for bringing their
products upto specifications.
The Army reiterated the government policy that it would not deal
with middlemen and elaborated how the process of buying an equipment
Asked how the army went about insulating its officials from the
influence of middlemen, Mehta would not comment on what was seen on
the tehelka tapes since an enquiry was already on.
But he said every meeting between an official and a
representative of a arms manufacturing firm should be recorded. The
purpose of the meeting had to be mentioned. If a meeting took place
outside the office, the Army headquarters had to be informed.
Though the general did not mention the tapes, it is unlikely that
these procedures were followed by defence officials who `advised'
tehelka reporters on how to bag a defence deal.
The Army wanted to particularly come clean on suggestions in the
tapes -- though no direct evidence was offered -- that middlemen
were involved in the purchase of T-90s tanks and the TGM Krasnopol
smart artillery ammunition.
The presentation outlined step-by-step the procedure through
which the two items were evaluated and recommended fit for the Army.
Giving dates and the rough composition of the evaluation teams,
Mehta elaborated on trials conducted on the tanks in Russia and
India. They included a trial in the Rajasthan desert in the peak of
The 15 men in the crew which actually tested the tank in field
trials were drawn from five regiments. Several top officers and
representatives from agencies like the Defence Research and
Development Organisation witnessed the
- 02:37am Mar 31, 2001 EST (#1809
SEE the bribes happen: http://www.Tehelka.com/
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