Brigadier Gurmeet Kanwal (Ret’d.) is a Delhi-based adjunct fellow with the Wadhwani Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C. Until recently, he was director of the Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS) in New Delhi (January 2008–March 2012). Brig. Kanwal commanded an infantry brigade in the high-altitude Gurez Sector in northern Kashmir on the Line of Control with Pakistan (Operation Parakram, 2001–2003) and an artillery regiment in counterinsurgency operations in the Kashmir Valley (Operation Rakshak, 1993–1994). He has served as deputy assistant chief of integrated defence staff (doctrine, organization, and training) at HQ Integrated Defence Staff, New Delhi; director MO-5 in the Directorate General of Military Operations at Army Headquarters (dealing with threat, strategy, and force structure); UN military observer in UNTAG, Namibia; brigade major of an infantry brigade and instructor-in-gunnery at the School of Artillery, Devlali.
After opting for voluntary retirement in 2003, Brig. Kanwal joined the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) in New Delhi as director of security studies and senior fellow. He has also served as senior fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) in New Delhi; senior fellow at the Centre for Air Power Studies in New Delhi; and visiting research scholar at the Cooperative Monitoring Centre (CMC), Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque. Brig. Kanwal has authored several books, including Nuclear Defence: Shaping the Arsenal; Indian Army: Vision 2020; Pakistan’s Proxy War; Heroes of Kargil; Kargil ’99: Blood, Guts and Firepower; and Artillery: Honour and Glory. He has contributed extensively to various journals of repute, as well as leading national newspapers, and he wrote a column on national security for the Statesman for over two years. He is a regular speaker at international think tanks and military institutions. He is also a keen photographer and has published a large number of photographs. His post-graduate qualifications include M.Sc. (defence studies) and M.Phil. (strategic studies and management).