India startled the world by announcing on 11 May that it had conducted underground tests of three nuclear weapons-including a hydrogen bomb. Although India exploded a nuclear device in 1974, for years the Indian government denied that it had a nuclear weapons program. Soon after its election, the new government announced a review of nuclear policy looking toward a weapons program. Later, it seemed to recant. Obviously, things have changed.
In April, the Pakistanis tested their new long-range (800 miles) missile, presumably designed to carry a nuclear warhead (apparently of Chinese design). India obviously did something in response. The nation's recently elected minority government, led by a Hindu fundamentalist party, is more likely to be concerned than its predecessors. Internally, Indian Moslems are the enemy. Externally, Pakistan is part of the same enemy. During the election campaign, the winning party pledged to rearm India—and is buying heavily from the Russians.