India, having targeted Pakistan and its nuclear programme, directly and through the US media to bear pressure on Pakistan, to rollback its nuclear agenda, or worse, commandeer its nuclear arsenal, has seen its efforts come to naught. Not that Indian propaganda was lacking in direction; it even used the services of Pakistan baiters like Bruce Riedel, David Albright, Frederick Kagan et al, who were goaded to assault Pakistan's nuclear programme through doom and gloom stories like the jihadists, Taliban and Al-Qaeda taking control of Pakistan's nuclear weapons and using them against the West. The fact is that Pakistan has established a solid and time-tested nuclear security programme, which despite its earlier reservations, the West has come to accept its efficacy. Also, the security forces of Pakistan have taken on the so-called jihadists, Taliban and Al-Qaeda triad, with such ferocity that either they have been eliminated or are on the run - a feat even the West cannot boast of in Afghanistan. The Dr Qadeer Khan episode did not help Pakistan's case of nuclear security, but the actions taken by Pakistan's Nuclear Command Authority following the lapse preclude the possibility of it ever being repeated. On the other hand, cases of Indian nuclear proliferation have come to light like David Albright's expos India's Gas Centrifuge Program: Stopping Illicit Procurement and the Leakage of Technical Centrifuge Know-How. The ISIS concluding that Indian procurement methods for its nuclear programme leak sensitive nuclear technology with impunity. Then there is the Indian firm NEC Engineering Private Limited mentioned in the British government's Iraq Dossier for helping Iraq produce ammonium per chlorate in a plant at Al-Mamoun; and worse still, Indian Nuclear Scientists, Dr Y S R Prasad and Dr Surendra Chaudhary, being found guilty of nuclear proliferation, having sanctions imposed by US State Department on September 29, 2004, in keeping with its Non-proliferation Act 2000. That is another story that the US is temporarily ignoring in quest of its proposed alliance with India. Pakistan has never denied that it is not pursuing a nuclear deterrent programme against a possibly hostile, nuclear-armed belligerent neighbour India. Nuclear deterrence is not about "keeping up with the Joneses" syndrome i.e. matching missile for missile. It is a known fact that India is aggressively pursuing the acquisition of the nuclear triad i.e. surface; air and sub-surface launched nuclear weapons. In the face of such imminent threat, Pakistan has the option of deciding for itself the number and quality of nuclear weapons it must have in its arsenal, directly proportional to the threat perception. No outsider has the right to declare Pakistan is stockpiling nukes over and above its genuine needs. Having stoked the fires against Pakistan's nukes, India is now gripped with a double paranoia: one that Pakistan's nuclear capability has overtaken India's and, more dangerously, the snare it had laid for Pakistan to be trapped into is likely to entangle the Indian nukes too. The former is evident from various Indian emanations like Deepak Kapoor's statement: "Pakistan is stockpiling nukes over and above its genuine needs"; and the "timed disclosure" by Indian top scientist K Santhanam that India's 1998 thermonuclear test was a failure and India should go for more nuclear tests. Being grouped with Pakistan has sent alarm bells ringing in the Indian camp. Brigadier (Dr) Subhash Kapila, who regularly contributes to the apparent RAW sponsored Indian website South Asia Analysis Group (SAAG) - where the likes of former RAW operatives B Raman, Commodore Bhaskar Roy, Dr S Chandrasekharan and others spread their venom against Pakistan - in his recent Op-Ed Pakistan's Nuclear Arsenal: The Renewed Focus By The United States Analysed conveys the same paranoia: "If the United States renewed focus on Pakistan's nuclear weapons arsenal is to denuclearise Pakistan and pre-empt a nuclear disaster in South Asia, then the aim is well conceived. However, if there is a concurrent and underlying aim to include India in the same end-aim, then the United States is wading into uncharted and dangerous waters, impacting global power play." What is good for the goose should be good for the gander The author tries to make a case against the US hyphenating India with Pakistan stating: "Use of India as a fig leaf to denuclearise Pakistan would be self-defeating and counter-productive for the United States." Sensing the noose tightening around India, Brigadier Kapila laments the Obama Administration's designation of Robert Einnhorn, a strong opponent of the US-India Nuclear Deal, as adviser to the US State Department on non-proliferation and disarmament issues. He surmises that Pakistan's expansion of its nuclear weapon arsenal is not limited to increase its second-strike nuclear capability against India only but to create a "second Pakistani nuclear arsenal" for Saudi Arabia. This has US concurrence to counter the emergence of Iran as a nuclear weapons arsenal. Kapila wonders: "United States possesses weighty strategic, political and economic leverages to discipline Pakistan's nuclear weapon waywardness. Why the apparent helplessness to do so and why the renewed focus on Pakistan nuclear weapon arsenal now?" and then "warns" the US that a repeat of a dichotomous approach on Pakistan's nuclear weapons waywardness could spawn a greater and more horrific catastrophe than 9/11 for the United States. The likes of Brigadier Kapila should know better than to give vent to their paranoia and bait the USA into action against Pakistan. These yellow pseudo scientific or otherwise journalists/opinion builders are in the habit of provoking the powers that be to coerce Pakistan much in the same trite way of "give a dog a bad name and hang it." They did so for Iraq, and then for Afghanistan, but will fail miserably in Pakistan as it is not going to be a walkover. The writer is a political and defence analyst.