India needs to harden its government and people to the consequences and casualties of conflict. This view among some strategic thinkers flows from the belief that India is too diffident, too cautious and too prone to opt for soft approaches even in the face of extreme provocation. Thus India’s inaction in the wake of successive terror strikes emboldened Pakistan to push the envelope against India. In that sense, the Balakot strike may have signalled a long overdue hardening of resolve. How permanent it is remains to be seen.