• 12 June, 2024
Foreign Affairs, Geopolitics & National Security

Anti-India Forces: Techniques And Agendas Exposed

Cdr Sandeep Dhawan (Retd) Sat, 27 Aug 2022   |  Reading Time: 8 minutes

In the post-cold war era, India has moved from a policy of non-alignment to a policy of multi-alignment. This means that India has friendly relations with almost all-powerful and developing nations.

Today India is carving out a unique path for itself. Such an approach provides prominence and exposes India to the harmful behind-curtain activities by some of the powers, which are not happy with the present situation. They join the usual suspects, China and Pakistan, to keep India unsettled and uncomfortable and stop it from becoming too rich and powerful. So, what are their techniques and agendas? How would they keep India under check and try to hamper the Indian story going smoothly?

Separatist Movements

One of the most effective methods of unsettling a country is by starting a separatist movement. It is essential to identify the regions of a nation that are suitable for such activities. One would be amazed to learn that if the poorest and least developed ethnically distinct areas are ideal for the separatist movement, then even the wealthiest region could also be utilized for the cause. The methodology used would be different.

Another critical aspect of the separatist movement is that there should be easy access to that region. That is the reason border states are most suitable for such movements. Poor states have enough reasons to believe that they are marginalized. They can also provide an unhindered supply of unemployed and frustrated youth. On the other hand, wealthy states have to be convinced that their hard-earned funds are being squandered away on other undeserving states.

Civil War And Mass Movements

While separatist movements keep a country unsettled, they rarely break up a nation. On the other hand, civil wars and mass movements give quick results in a short period. Civil wars are most effective in democracies where unhappy citizens have the power to vote out the politician.

To start with, mass movements and civil wars need an objective and a text to achieve that objective.  Al-Qaeda had Osama bin Laden’s ‘Declaration of War Against the Americans Occupying the Land of the Two Holy Places.’ Muammar Gaddafi copied Mao’s Red Book and produced his own Green BookAdolf Hitler gave Nazi groups Mein Kampf. In the United States, William Pierce gave white supremacist groups, The Turner Diaries. In China, they have ‘Xi Jinping Thought.’ The list is endless.

Once the text is ready, the time comes to implement it. The first step in that direction is to identify the groups who would take that agenda forward and impress upon them that they are distinct people from the rest. The second step is to adopt an attire, a symbol, and a slogan that could be alien to the land to symbolize and identity with a much bigger sect, group, or cult, elsewhere.

The third step is to question and mock every local practice, every reform, and decision taken by the government. The fourth step would be to project that the group’s practices are superior, others are an inferior lot, and put across weird demands like banning music and reading only the literature related to movement, etc.

The next step is a big jump when the violence is introduced to take on the other groups or spread general terror. Time also becomes ripe to go on propaganda blitzkrieg and dehumanize the existing leaders. Buy or fund as many media houses as possible. Reputed international writers and intellectuals’ services are also taken to put extreme pressure on the local government.

While the huge rallies are suitable for international attention, they put the spotlight on participants. Those exposed through such protests get on the police watch list and get arrested occasionally. The real work is done by cell-style leaderless resistance. One FBI director once stated that “thousands of these small phantom cells are an intelligence nightmare for a government.”

The foot soldiers of these cell-style leaderless groups are indoctrinated into ‘accelerationism.’ Accelerationism theory states that the modern ways of governance are irreparably corrupt and should be replaced by an ancient or different system.

When the movement shifts from rallies to violent phase a war of attrition begins. A large number of individuals as well as infrastructures are targeted. Roads, railways, business hubs, and power plants etc. are blocked from public use. The unbearable pain makes even the citizens not participating in the movement dissatisfied. If the government of the day is still not toppled, then intimidation is the best solution. The intimidation phase is to target people who matter, and who have power. Idea is to make them feel powerless and run for own safety rather than implementing the law of the land.

Now, if there are more groups than one, then they would have competition among themselves to outdo each other. More powerful groups would make more lethal attacks to solidify their position. They would also spoil the chances of any peace between government agencies and any moderate group.

In 1979, Iranian radicals had kidnapped fifty-two Americans in Tehran not because relations between the United States and Iran were worsening. It was done because Mehdi Bazargan, Iran’s relatively moderate prime minister, and Zbigniew Brzezinski, the U.S. national security adviser were seen shaking hands in a photograph. The handshake was mistaken for a sign of the restoration of harmony.

The Leader And The Able Lieutenants

A movement is nothing without leaders and followers. Premature introduction of a movement and the leader is a recipe for failure. Conditions are ripe when frustration is at its peak; people are looking out for a leader and ready to obey him at any cost.

Real leaders should never be exposed. If possible, the real leader should be in a different location altogether. These real leaders should be able to create a secondary core team and have a hold over that team. The secondary leaders should have their own teams. Under the public gaze should be only the secondary leaders and their teams.

These secondary leaders should be men of wordsFailed scholars, author, artist, scientist, etc. These people are incurably frustrated and most vehement. They are the permanent misfits with an unfulfilled craving for creative work. They try to write, paint, compose, etcetera, and fail decisively.

The core team need not have originality or great intellect. They should just evoke sense of liberation, be charismatic, and look visionary. The average intelligence ensures they are never on their own and always obey the orders of the main leaders.

It is important, that to succeed the core team gives the movement shape of a compact corporate organization right from the beginning. It should take in and incorporate all newcomers in a professional manner. Idea is to make new joiners forget their individual self and get immersed into a closely knit and motivated corporate entity.

The leaders should continuously remind the followers of a glorious past and a promise of magnificent future. There is no need to make each individual understand the doctrine. They should just believe in it. The doctrine should be rather incomprehensible, vague and have no source to corroborate with.

The main leaders must never forget that a mass movement is pioneered by men of words, materialized by fanatics and given final shape by the men of action.

Therefore, once the present leadership has been discredited by the men of words, fanatics, and men of action move in. Very rarely, the men of word would have the capacity to take the movement to the consolidation phase. Lenin was one rare example of the man of word, fanatic, and the man of action, all in one. This is why Fascism and Naziism, being single-leader movements, failed, and communism thrived.

Fanatics’ primary domain is Chaos. They usher in new beginnings, rubbish all reforms, thrives on chaos and helps the old order collapse. While men of word hate chaos, fanatics are most non-creative people and believe in destruction.

A fanatic is a stop-gap arrangement and cannot sustain a new beginning. Therefore, at the right moment, the men of action appear to replace chaos with the order, a new desired order.

The Foot Soldier: The Believer

Frustration is the first requirement to be a foot soldier. This doesn’t imply that poor or deprived are always frustrated. Poor from close knit and compact groups are immune to their plight. It would take a disaster, an invasion, a disease, communal disharmony to open their eyes to their plight and give rise to frustration.

Adolescent youth, unemployed college graduates, veterans, new or illegal immigrants, religious fanatics and the likes make best foot soldiers. They are restless, disgruntled and tormented by the fear that their best years will be squandered before they reach their goal.

The foot soldiers must be most violent, and indisciplined troublemakers for the society but most obedient to the movement. The Japanese, Nazi and Islamic State followers displayed these dual traits.

When foot soldiers are ready for one movement, they are prepared for another movement too. It is the leader who has to decide when the mission of one movement is over, and time is ripe to shift to another movement. That is the reason one sees the same familiar faces in different movements repeatedly.

The movement is bound to fail when it converts from self-renunciation to self-advancement. In the early days of movement, many leaders and foot soldiers would join in to work on their fortune. Therefore, right from the beginning, the self-interest has to be made very evil, unclean and tainted.

The Requirement Of A Devil

Mass movements can survive without God but never without a devil. Hate is the prime requirement for a movement to succeed. Therefore right, in the beginning, a person of interest should be chosen. The whole movement would thrive on hating him or her. Hate bonds people much more than love.

It is important that a leader always has a person, caste or race to hate. Chiang Kai-shek was head of the Nationalist government in China (1928–49) and later in Taiwan (1949–75). When the Japanese were plundering his country, he couldn’t convert that hatred into mass hysteria. Once the Japanese enemy disappeared from the scene, at the end of the world war, even then he failed to find a new enemy to hate. Thus, people lost enthusiasm, and he lost China to Mao.

On the other hand, Kemal Ataturk of Turkey could effectively use nationalism to modernize his country. Discontent in itself is no remedy for a change. Discontent has to be followed by dissatisfaction. Therefore, hope in the present government, system, religion, or the country itself has to vanish.


Propaganda is very important tool in the hands of the main leaders. Propaganda enters only in to open and willing minds. The fears, hopes and passions should be used to block their mind from the reality. They see, hear and feel things coming from the propagandist what they have already visualized in their heart and mind. At times little coercion from the propagandist works. It has been noticed that the leaders and the foot soldier who suffer the most become the most ardent and cruel believers of the movement.

Best way to propel propaganda is through intellectuals, print, electronic and social media. Countries like China have entered Indian intellectual spaces. Chinese intelligence services have well-established themselves into the Indian entertainment sector and academia. They have managed to do so by making generous donations directly or through proxies. They regularly conduct exchange programmes among think-tanks and university students.

Today most Indian universities are left leaning. Most of India’s educational and online news and content aggregators have received investment directly or indirectly from companies related to the Chinese Communist PartyTherefore, in a way, they control our and our children’s present and future thoughts.


If one leaves aside problems faced by the British Crown post-World War two, the British Raj made some fundamental mistakes in India. Instead of cultivating relationships with Nizams, Maharajas, Nawabs, and Gaekwads etc they should have made an effort to win the Indian intellectuals. Ignoring the Indian intellectuals costed them ‘the jewel in the crown.’

The fact is that snobbish British lacked the aptitude to get along with intellectuals. They were men of action and had flawed belief in superiority of the British. They mostly disrespected the Indian intellectuals and relied mainly on the action. The education system they were trying on Indians became their nemesis. They never encouraged the Indians to become engineers, doctors, technicians or any other professional but men of words. And that trickery instead of safeguarding British rule, hastened its end.

The demise of the Mughal empire and British Raj is summed up very well by the American philosopher Eric Hoffer — “Christianity and Islam made little headway against Hinduism because the Sanatan religion had the ardent allegiance of the learned men and intellectuals. The Brahmins and their disciples enjoyed an exalted status in India, where the school and the book supplanted the temple and the nation. In any social order where the reign of learned men is so supreme, no opposition can develop within, and no foreign mass movement can gain a foothold.”

Anti-CAA protests, farmers’ protests, Delhi riots and a series of other events show clearcut patterns of what we discussed in the preceding paragraphs. The leadership of the nation must understand the patterns in these methodologies. Ignoring a movement won’t help. Since older the movement gets, more fanatical, orthodox, and difficult to handle it becomes. Government must also recognize, nurture and provide for the men of word and intellectuals and safeguard them from external and internal threats. Unlike the British Raj, foreign powers know that the first step in destabilization of India would be achieved by the men of words, and they are out to get them.

Gratitude: This writing is inspired by the writings of George Orwell, Vaclan Havel, Albert Camus, Czeslaw Milosz, Hannah Arendt, Eric Hoffer and many more.


A veteran of the Indian Navy, Cdr Dhawan served in the Navy from 1988 to 2009. He was a Maritime Reconnaissance Pilot and a Flying Instructor. He is a geopolitical analyst and writes for various online websites and organizations.


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Rajesh Chidambaram

Sep 02, 2022
Very well summed up Sandeep and concepts have been explained in an easy to understand manner. Keep up the good work. Best wishes

Ajay Maini

Sep 02, 2022
This article brings about the operational aspect of "Fifth Generation Warfare" in broad terms. It is no wonder that most epoch-making decisions taken by the current nationalist govt. have come under fierce criticism by selected actors, often followed by avoidable violence. The cumulative effect of such actions has and will continue to cost the nation in decimal percentage terms of its GDP. It is for the leadership of the nation from all six domains of - polity, bureaucracy, academia, business, military and religion - to come together seamlessly, identify these anti-national actors, strategize neutralizing/destroying them, and implement that strategy effectively until such actors exist. Of course, initiating 5th Generation Warfare against a nation is easiest for nations with a single party system of governance like China, or for a nation which is an economic powerhouse and controls global finances, like the US. The defendants, like India, Russian, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, Australia, Japan, Germany, and some others, need to continuously be on the look out.

Kalidan Singh

Aug 30, 2022
Okay so now we know. What are we doing about it? How come there are any madrassas in India? How come there are Islamic parties that preach about Gazwa Hind? Knowing is nothing, doing is everything. We are so clever, we know. But we don't seem to know what to do. One day, soon, I will land in Mumbai, exit the airport, and see a green flag next to, or replacing the Tiranga. That day, I won't bother to get into a taxi, I will walk back in and never return. India is becoming Pakistan, all the while we are claiming all kinds of insights and knowledge about this. If we are so smart, how is this happening.

Amit Tiwari

Aug 30, 2022
देश विरोधी तत्वों का मुंहतोड़ जवाब देने के लिए हमें इस तरह के लेख अधिक से अधिक प्रकाशित करने की आवश्यकता है सर। अब समय है की देश के नागरिक ऐसे तत्वों को पहचानें और अपनी जानकारी बढ़ाकर खुले मंचों पर इनका मुहतोड़ जवाब दें। यह जरूरी है कि अब हम देशवाशियों के बीच देश की उपलब्धियों और मजबूत पक्ष को अधिक पहुंचाएं जिससे लोगों में जागरूकता बढ़े। तभी नकारात्मक विचारधाराओं को शांत किया जा सकता है।

Pradeep Sharan

Aug 30, 2022
Well analysed and written, Sandeep. Keep it up

Kalidan Singh

Aug 29, 2022
Okay I get it. We are all very intelligent people, and know all about everything. But we cannot stop anything. We cannot stop parties and institutions in India that openly state their desire for gazwa hind, for making the country Islamic, and mock everything that is Indian (while claiming ancestry in central Asia and what not). Knowing about it, and then refusing to do anything suggests we are rather stupid and ineffectual. Not intelligent.

Col Shailendra Singh rawat

Aug 29, 2022
... a well written well researched article ... Lays out the broad facts of the entire game plan ... India has recently been subjected to so many classic text book style separatist and agitationist campaigns ... But I do believe iprimistally n in the greater good ... The people have become much more well read and much more aware to read through such sinister schemes as they now can differentiate between the past and the present and the goods that they are getting now ... N that's where India wins against all odds ...

Cdr Neeraj Singla

Aug 29, 2022
Excellent write up. We need more articles and analysis like this. Also, as other countries and organizations are doing to us, we should also do similar things to them. We have been on defensive for too long.

Cdr NK Kulkarni

Aug 29, 2022
The entire gambit is well formatted. But the brain child is never a nationalist, but a mere paid hooligan. Their sole purpose is just to be in limelight with no virtual & apparent liability. The sacrificial lambs are always the foot soldiers. Not all aandolan jeevi's are anti nationals. Poverty & ignorance drives them to be easily gullible towards these paid hooligans

Shaurya Shandilya

Aug 28, 2022
Such a good article. As always!

Dhirender Gaur

Aug 28, 2022
Each Word of the article is very apt. Indians must engage with the system for apurpose rather then just being mute spectator. We need to understand definite designs of vested interests to destabilize India.

Deovrat Pagay

Aug 28, 2022
The anti- India pincer strategy is the biggest security and strategic challenge for India. Pak infiltrations and Chinese incursions are working in tandem to rock India’s boat.

Wendell Bruges

Aug 28, 2022
Another masterpiece, Commander. Wow is the only word that comes to mind.

Dr Ahmed Raza

Aug 28, 2022
Dear Commander Sandeep Dhawan (Retd) First of all, I commend you for the article which is realistic and, of course thought-provoking. Your point of view is absolutely valid that for "INDIA" write any other country like "PAKISTAN", your article would still fit in the reality. Regards

Cdr Deepak Singh

Aug 27, 2022
Beutiful writing. Foot soldiers gain from the education they received. In Madarsa if one is taught only Kuran and Allah, what do you expect? Foot soldiers as you explained. Coming to Iran of Shah era, he was US baby and the oil. US started everything when Shah joined the OPEC. All was oil . World Was II had greater impact on Europe than Asia. Tiwan was already lost to China, rest followed. US has different Foot Soldiers, you understand. Waiting for your next article.

B Raja

Aug 27, 2022
Bravo ! This is very fresh approach. The context avoids the issues of 'nationalism' and 'religion centric' discourse. I dare say, the diverse and disparate nature of India precludes 'objective and a text' type mass movements and civil war. What endangers india today is the spontaneous nature of movement a-la Anna Hazare. The 'unemployable' unemployed in India today are the crucible; fomented by a 'Whatsapp culture' of unverified and unsubstantiated 'call'. Fortunately, the 'Agniveer' movement was limited due to the generally 'educated' and 'well-to-do' nature of the misguided participants. The diversity of 'sociogical nature of people' of India also precludes various leadership rungs required for an unsettling movement. The inherent 'peaceful' / 'minding-own-business' nature of the Indians too provides a certain cushion from rapidly spreading 'movement'. The days of armchair-intelligentsia spreading calumny against the state too is on the wane due to the comforts that the air conditioned armchair brings. The 'tools' used in the past quickly get unraveled in the social media today. The world is flat! That is the precise reason for the intelligentsia from hiring foot soldiers. I believe, for India, the clear and present danger, the real cause of worry, lies in the religious polarity coming into play. The author's dependence on history is creditable, and it's outcome for future movements - aided (specifically) by changing technology - is expected to be seen in future / follow up article(s).

Rakesh P

Aug 27, 2022
It was an eye-opener. I just kept reading and related the whole article to various situations. Kudos to you for yet again bringing out in-depth research on a relevant topic.

Kuldeep Singh

Aug 27, 2022
Very educative article on the likely strategy of separatists in India.

GP Singh

Aug 27, 2022
Aptly analysed . The govt must look into the real reasons of the problems faced by our country and root it out completely instead of treating the symptoms .


Aug 27, 2022
No nation will collapse cos of poverty or hunger, it will certainly collapse under the burden of ignorance. This endemic malady in resource rich poor nations was exploited to the hilt by colonialists to conquer n plunder these nations n continues to be practiced till date. Unfortunately despite being the richest n most developed country spiritually,culturally n in literacy,India repeatedly fell victim to the machinations of marauders n was conquered n enslaved. Regrettably we have not learnt our lessons.Hunger for power n riches deeply divides the politicians n their ways. In turn they usurp votes by dividing the society n polity on religiosity,caste,class, appeasement, doles et al, turning the country into a rich breeding ground for inimical powers to create dissension,disruption,division n polarisation in the Society, a sure formula to divide conquer. The present dispensation of PM Narinder Modi is toiling relentlessly to ward off the evil n the devils behind these exploits, yet we have a long way to go to create a cohesive society, where every one is an Indian first n anything else later.

Anil Chopra

Aug 27, 2022
An excellent Article. Great job done. You have hit the nail.

Gaurav Chaturvedi

Aug 27, 2022
A very well written article.The crux lies in the last few paragrraphs as far as Indian context is concerned.The cultivation of faculty /students from all top universities ,be govt or private is giving handsome dividends to left controlled Anti Indoan force.This impact will further increase as and when students frm these institutions move up in there lives and occupy positions of eminance in life.This is warfare of a different type.Well exposed by Cdr Sandeep.Time for security est and govt in India to take note and plan countrr measures

Randhir Punia

Aug 27, 2022
Well explained Sandy. Hope people will understand that they are being used.


Aug 27, 2022
Well researched and articulated. Captures the sum and substance of the internal conflicts affecting and destabilising India from within, with active support of external elements. In many ways, the breaking- India or rather Bharat, has been a work in progress from many centuries. The external operatives are both political and religious in their origin. They use their internal loyal sepoys cultivated over the years through indoctrination and gratification to keep the pot of internal conflicts burning. Post independence, the efforts of breaking Bharat and destroy it's Indic civilisational markers has only further intensified ,largely by same forces. To be more specific, we can trace and identify these anti or breaking- India forces objectively. They are fundamentally three vectors / forces operating independentally and collectively in same direction - breaking India along its faultlines: 1.Global Islamist Jihad operatives, working towards their unfinished agenda of Ghazwa E Hind. 2. Global Christian conversion Mafia operatives , led by American Church + Vatican. "Project Joshua" is their wip towards that. 3. Global communist operatives , through Naxalites and CPIM. One latest addition to above has joined hands and are raising their heads .Khalistani operatives from Canada, US, UK. The topic is too vast actually to cover the genesis and prognosis of this anti India malcontents in one article . Some recommended readings to understand this most critical existential threats to India are: Breaking India forces: By Rajiv Malhotra and A Neekakandan. India that is Bharat: by J Sai Deepak ( first in series of Trilogies coming up) Thanks for bringing up a very relevant issue that any rational and true patriot should be aware of plus worried about ,to protect Bharat from weakening internally.


Aug 27, 2022
Another eye opener and well researched article.

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