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बेसिक इंग्लिश का दूसरा सत्र (कक्षा प्रारंभ : 22 अक्तूबर, शाम 3:30 से 5:30)
India-USA Seek Close Ties in Intelligence Sharing
Jan 30, 2015

The US and India had discussions on an intelligence-sharing pact that could tie the two countries’ covert services into one of the closest partnerships the superpower has outside of the Five Eyes Treaty signed by the five English-speaking powers after World War II.

First raised ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s summit meeting with President Barack Obama in September, the discussions on the pact were reviewed by the two leaders recently when Barack Obama visited India.

  • The pact would enable India access to encrypted digital traffic its intelligence services are now unable to decipher.

  • It would also make state-of-the-art western espionage technology available to the Directorate of Military Intelligence and the National Technical Research Organisation.

  • The push for a closer intelligence relationship comes from the US Department of Defence.

  • It also has the backing of former National Security Council staff President Obama has brought into key positions in the White House.

  • US needs to be more forthcoming in sharing intelligence with India and holding Pakistan to account for its ambivalent counter-terrorism performance.

  • Five Eyes Treaty signed in 1946, tied the governments of the US, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand into what is today the largest intelligence gathering network in the world, using listening stations across the world and a string of dedicated satellites, to gather virtually all internet, telecommunications and satellite traffic.

  • It is also thought to have the largest capabilities for breaking encrypted traffic, centred around the US National Security Agency.

  • In addition to Five Eyes, the post-9/11 world has seen the emergence of several affiliates: Nine Eyes, which added France, Denmark, Norway and the Netherlands; and Fourteen Eyes, which added Germany, Belgium, Italy, Spain and Sweden to Nine Eyes.

  • The US also has similar arrangements with closely allied states such as South Korea, Singapore and Japan.

  • Ever since the 1990s, when the European Parliament conducted an investigation of Five Eyes’ ECHELON electronic-intelligence gathering system, there have been repeated revelations that the agreement also allowed partners to bypass domestic legal restrictions on espionage, targeting citizens of member states by their own spy services.

  • Intelligence cooperation between India and the US has grown dramatically since 26/11. But a pact would give some structure to the system. It would give clarity on exactly what would and would not be shared.

  • The US has provided a growing volume of information on planned attacks by Pakistan-based groups—helping India preempt at least two attacks on diplomatic facilities in Afghanistan, the last one its consulate in Herat.

  • However, US does not currently share the raw data or sources from which the warnings are generated—in some cases, making interpretation of information problematic.

  • Several formidable challenges to be overcome before India can begin purchasing cutting-edge digital intelligence technologies from the US.

  • The US is fearful that equipment can be used to eavesdrop on sensitive information,

  • India insists on domestic security certification for purchases.

  • No Indian firm currently certifies EAL7-plus, the most stringent standard for digital security.

  • Fears also exist that an intelligence-sharing agreement might allow penetration of its own secrets.

(Courtesy: Indian Express)


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