From the brink of war
From the brink of war: on U.S.-Iran
conflict (The Hindu)
Mains Paper 2: International Relations
Prelims level : Article 51 of the UN Charter
Mains level : Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing
countries on India's interests
- The latest spell of conflict between the U.S. and Iran turned full
circle on Wednesday when Tehran launched ballistic missile attacks at
American troops in two military bases in Iraq in retaliation for the
assassination of Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani.
- In its first direct attack on U.S. forces, Iran targeted Erbil, the
capital of the Iraqi Kurdistan in the north, and Al-Asad in the west, which
is some 400 km away from the Iranian border.
An act of retaliation and capability:
- Foreign Minister Javad Zarif invoked Article 51 of the UN Charter, which
allows member-states to take military actions in self defence if they come
- He said Iran has taken and concluded “proportionate measures in self-defence”,
which can be interpreted that Iran is now ready for de-escalation.
- The man who is primarily responsible for the current explosive situation
is U.S. President Donald Trump.
- His decision to kill Soleimani, a top Iranian military leader who
commanded the elite Qods Force for over two decades, in the Iraqi capital,
was practically an act of war, forcing the Islamic regime to respond.
- However, despite the wide range of rhetoric issued by Iranian military
leaders and hard-line politicians, what Tehran actually did was to launch a
calculated, limited strike.
- It is as much an act of revenge as an opportunity for de-escalation.
Moves taken by U.S.
- The Pentagon’s assessments suggested there were no American casualties
and only minimal damage in the attacks.
- Mr. Trump, in his response later on Wednesday, has signalled that he was
backing away from further conflicts with Iran. If the U.S. had responded
with air strikes or missile attacks inside Iran, it could have triggered
further attacks from Iran, setting off a cycle of violence and aggression.
- A direct shooting match between the U.S. and Iran would have been
disastrous for the whole of West Asia.
- Iran may be a weaker power compared to America’s conventional military
might, but it is a formidable rival.
- It not only has ballistic missiles and a wide range of rockets but also
a host of militias under its command across the region.
- It could have made an invasion and air strikes on its territories
extremely costly for the U.S. and its allies.
- It could also have disrupted global oil supply by attacking the Gulf
- By any assessment, a direct war would have been catastrophic. Mr. Trump
did well to step back and not push the Gulf region into a disastrous cycle
of violence and destruction.
- The international community should now push for a diplomatic settlement
of the crisis and find ways to revive the nuclear deal which could bring
long-term peace to the Gulf. And Iran should seize this opportunity for
Q.1) With reference to the Indian Data Relay Satellite System (IDRSS),
consider the following statements:
1. It is planned to track and be constantly in touch with Indian satellites,
in particular those in low-earth orbits which have limited coverage of earth.
2. It will be useful in monitoring launches.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
Q.1) How an act of retaliation and showing capability help to develop the
relation between Iran and U.S. Comment.