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Kargil Revisited - II

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Kargil Revisited - II

Postby Rakesh » 29 Jun 2004 00:37

Old Thread in the Kargil Archive.
Last edited by Rakesh on 02 May 2006 08:44, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Rakesh » 29 Jun 2004 00:38

Originally posted by Ravi.

From Asian Age. Posting in full as it is not archived. Seems to be just a whining article, but what caught my attention was that this author was secretary of the Chiefs of Staff Committee besides serving a long stint with the Research and Analysis Wing in the Cabinet Secretariat’s department of Cabinet Affairs.

The discord over the use of air power in Kargil
- By Mukund B. Kunte

It will be a long time before the last word on Kargil is written. General V.P. Malik, then at the head of the million-plus strong Indian Army, wanting to clear the air on an unsavoury controversy has written on behalf of the olive green community. His view My side of the Kargil story (The Op-ed Page, June 18) must be respected. However, there are some aspects which need to be looked at afresh because he has thrown light on the deliberations of the COSC and CCS and the day by day assessment of the war after he returned from a foreign tour.

First and foremost, the setting in of complacency at Raisina Hill and the "feel good" concept: Consider how in the wake of Pokhran II the BJP along with the Sangh Parivar had gone to town to wax eloquently, but a bit too loudly. Then came the Lahore Bus which was treated as a matchless triumph for Mr Vajpayee and the NDA. It was, however, far from a diplomatic success because at the very moment while the two Prime Ministers were shaking hands in Lahore (lest it is forgotten, on that historic day the three defence chiefs of Pakistan did not even greet our Prime Minister), Pak troops were in fact crossing into Kashmir in the Kargil-Drass sectors.

It is very surprising to know from Malik that the assessment in South Block was that the intruders were militants and not Pakistani troops. Surely, our peace time air surveillance on the border should have given better inputs than cursorily looking at suspicious movements in such a sensitive area. Or were they overtaken by complacency following the much hyped handshake? Our ground recce by the Army formations also failed to alert their senior Army commanders. This writer was told by some junior ranks serving on the Pakistan border how they had become lax after "the Bus" and did not always bother to reach their designated targets but instead filed "all clear" reports. Disastrous consequences followed which were corrected only after a superhuman effort by our brave soldiers.

Now, the role of the Air Force: As advocated by them, use of helicopters for surveillance and ground support wasn’t a wise option after the "intrusions" had turned out to be a combat situation between our two Armies. Furthermore, air power was ruled out on the premise that the conflict would have been enlarged. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, we lost two fighter aircraft on the very first day when air element was introduced in the war theatre putting brakes on that tactic. The general does not reveal the American role and President Clinton prevailing on New Delhi not to escalate. Or perhaps, Islamabad had let it be known that they had the nuclear option — they were never a party to our "no first use" doctrine. Thus, the breast beating by the leaders of the NDA in 1998 on India acquiring the status of a nuclear-weapon capable state was just "hot air."

It becomes obvious that the responsibility for the 500-odd fatal war casualties, never mind the coffin scam, must fall squarely on the government of the day, with the buck stopping at Atal Behari Vajpayee’s desk. An exceedingly pro-active Raksha Mantri, who had sacked the naval chief a few months earlier, could not have dared to touch the Army or Air Force chiefs between whom there appears to have been some mismatch about the use of air power. A discord on the use of air power had also surfaced in the 1965 war when an overbearing Army chief had not only ruled out the participation of the Navy but asked for air support only after his ground troops were facing impossible odds in the land battle. The Air chief (Arjun Singh) agreed but only after forcing the Army chief to take him to the defence minister. Government clearance was then given by Yeshwantrao Chavan. No such detail is available for Kargil except for what Malik has recorded now after a lapse of so many years. Perhaps if "Old George" had reduced the frequency of his tours to Siachen and more meaningfully visited other sectors in Kashmir, a different picture would have emerged. But then, the Lahore Bus got the better of him too!

Finally, intelligence, or lack of it as noted by Malik: It was concluded in the Subramaniam Committee report that there was a failure of intelligence assessment or rather the failure in correct interpretation by the CCS of all the intelligence reports. If there was indeed a failure of intelligence, why was the head of RAW promoted post-haste as a governor even before he had reached the age of superannuation?

n Mukund B. Kunte was secretary of the Chiefs of Staff Committee besides serving a long stint with the Research and Analysis Wing in the Cabinet Secretariat’s department of Cabinet Affairs

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Umrao » 29 Jun 2004 00:40

there is a shade of truth in what the writer says (kunte).

'The irrational exhuberence of Atalji' after the bus trip is so typical of his Nobel thoughts.

Recall that he chided AM Tipnis for not saluting the butcher called Musharaff. So much for his raj neethi. ANy way we never know when is in jest or just, till he does his customary flip flop.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby putnanja » 29 Jun 2004 01:05

1998 war-game predicted Kargil

The Hindu has obtained access to a January 30, 1999 letter, calling the attention of the then 3 Infantry Division Commander, Major-General V.S. Budhwar, to major weaknesses in the defences identified in the course of the war-game, code-named Exercise Jaanch. Written by Colonel Pushpinder Oberoi, commanding officer of the 16 Grenadiers, the letter is marked 0072/AC OPS. Colonel Oberoi was later cashiered for the unauthorised vacation of Bajrang, a key forward post in the Kargil sector, during the winter of 1998-1999.

According to Colonel Oberoi's classified letter, Exercise Jaanch suggested that "existing defs [defences] need a re-look in view of the en [enemy] capturing certain hts [heights] in the vicinity of own defs [defences], rendering some posts untenable." It proceeded to make the specific suggestion that section-strength or company-strength forces be permanently stationed on Point 5165, Pariyon ka Talab and Point 4165. General Budhwar, sources said, was dismissive of the warning, and told the local commanders to make do with the forces they had.

Colonel Oberoi's letter, the sources said, was written after General Budhwar failed to respond to the verbal pleas for troops, made during his visit to the sector on November 25, 1998. It would, ironically, have reached the 3 Division Headquarters — and possibly the offices of the then-15 Corps Commander, Lieutenant-General Kishan Pal — about the same time the first reconnaissance groups of Pakistani intruders occupied these features. General Pal, like other senior officers, was dismissive of the prospect of a Pakistani offensive, an attitude founded on the fact that Prime Ministers Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Nawaz Sharif were to meet in Lahore shortly.


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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Ashutosh » 29 Jun 2004 01:25

Jumrao, FWIW - Tipnis was a professional and it is not the hallmark of a professional to indulge in defiant activities like he did. Note that this is not the TSPA or TSPAF where anything is allowed and upto one's own wishes and fantasies. It's not Tipnis' job to decide whether Mushy is salutable or not. In the same vein I wonder if you would condone the Sri Lankan Navy guy for slamming the rifle on Rajiv Gandhi's head/shoulder.
Originally posted by John Umrao:
there is a shade of truth in what the writer says (kunte).

'The irrational exhuberence of Atalji' after the bus trip is so typical of his Nobel thoughts.

Recall that he chided AM Tipnis for not saluting the butcher called Musharaff. So much for his raj neethi. ANy way we never know when is in jest or just, till he does his customary flip flop.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Umrao » 29 Jun 2004 01:34

SL navy man rifle butting is no comparison to the air chief merely hand shaking, all the while he must have been thinking the horrible death of SqLdr Ahuja. Mind you the same Atalji did not even merit a visit by the three chefs of Pakistan when in Lahore.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Subra » 29 Jun 2004 04:46

Yikes - mark this day on calendar. :D

I agree with Umrao.

The Vajpayee Govts behavior with Lt Gen kapil Vij is another shameful incident.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Jagan » 29 Jun 2004 05:54

Did Vajpayee really chide tipnis? I haven't read anything that says that. From what i know, Tipnis and Army chief turned up without thier hats at the dinner - and as everyone knows, you dont salute if you dont wear your hat :D

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby ramana » 29 Jun 2004 06:40

A lot of new stuff is coming out. Need to redo the factors for surprise article in BRM. From what Kunte is saying there was letting down of the guard after Lahore. If that is the case the Subhramanyam committee was not through in the Kargil review.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby daulat » 29 Jun 2004 16:36

does not surprise me that guard was let down. we are too trusting onlee. this is why abv has not forgiven muskrat

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby RayC » 29 Jun 2004 18:25

Kunte apparently has found his voice after the fall of the NDA govt. It would have been more courageous if we had his wise counsel earlier.

It is rather extraordinary for a person who has had a long innings in the RAW that he does not know what the value of intelligence is and what is the value of assessed intelligence. Indeed the Subhramanium Committee is right that there was a failure of ‘assessed intelligence’ even if there was no failure of intelligence. The assessment is done by the intelligence agency that obtains the raw intelligence input or information. Therefore, whose failure it was can be well understood. Even post Kargil, the assessed intelligence kept on reporting militants in training at various camps. They never reported as to what happened to the militants thereafter! Obviously they could be training all the time and never moving out! What good is being told that terrorists are training? What is important is the follow up, on which the RAW was magnificently silent! Therefore, the failure is that of RAW which has far more resources and time than any other agency. Being RAW man, he wishes to obfuscate this failure by highlighting extraneous issues like the Bus Diplomacy and ‘Old George’ etc or ‘junior ranks’ telling him that ground recce was not being done and ‘all clear’ reports being filed because they had become lax thanks to the Bus in Lahore! Indeed, it is most juvenile to suggest that the frontline troops are influenced so greatly by the antics of politicians. Indeed, if the patrols did not reach the designated areas, it was because of heavy snow. In so far as his comments on WASO (Winter Aerial Surveillance Operations), I have already covered the same in earlier posts. In short, a helicopter makes a lot of noise in the stillness of winter or even otherwise. Therefore, it is heard miles away and a lurker can always hide! Footprints are not as easily spotted as is made out.

He seems to lament that the war was not enlarged. It just shows how little he knows about warfighting or governance or even diplomacy. Where did the extra personnel and equipment come from in Kargil. Obviously from elsewhere. Therefore, it would have created gaps and voids. Surely that was no format to enlarge the scope of the war. To wit, 8 Div or Bofors were not there when the infiltration was discovered. Or is he a votary that more lives should have been sacrificed to feed fat his ego?

Old George’s visits not only in Siachen but all over the country in visiting troops and defence forces and its effect would not be understood by a pen pusher like Kunte holed up in Delhi. Therefore, his comments indicate his ignorance and the quality of assessment that his ilk makes. The visits were not meaningless at all. His interaction with all, high and low, allowed a proper hands on assessment rather than indulging in meaningless intrigues done by politicians in Delhi.

It is extraordinary that he feels that we should use our nukes (…acquiring the status nuclear power was breast beating and ‘hot air’).

That Musharraf had entered Kargil while the Lahore Bus was on was not known to even the PM! This proves how good the RAW is. Indeed it will remain so if it is staffed by men of Kunte’s calibre.

The 500 odd fatal cases of the Kargil War rest not on ABV’s desk. The buck stops at the RAW desk.

On the Hindu report:

Oberoi’s command did not include Bajrang. In the mountains, there is a tendency to hold every height which is not possible since there is that much of troops and not more! That is the reason why it is said ‘mountains eat up troops’. Hence, one has to prioritise. Even with a Division being where there was a Brigade, one can still state that there are areas which should be held. It is like stating that the Army should have men with the brawn of Governor Arnold of California, the brains of Einstein, the patience of Gandhi and the guile of a fox! And yet, we have what we get! Does it make the Armed Forces any worse?

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Umrao » 29 Jun 2004 18:28

Originally posted by Subra:
Yikes - mark this day on calendar. :D

I agree with Umrao.

The Vajpayee Govts behavior with Lt Gen kapil Vij is another shameful incident.
LNS your sentiments are reciprocated gives me kinda creeps that you agree with me :D

*****

Air chief refuses to salute Musharraf
In a conspicuous departure from strict protocol requirements, Air Chief Marshal Anil Yashwant Tipnis did not salute President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan at the ceremonial reception at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Saturday morning. Instead, the Indian Air Force chief merely shook hands with the Pakistani general.
Air Chief Marshal Tipnis, who was representing the three services according to the rotational principle followed by the defence chiefs for ceremonial welcomes, was in the front row of dignitaries.
There was much speculation before the reception as to how he would greet the man seen as the mastermind of the Kargil conflict.
A controversy had erupted during the visit of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to Lahore in 1999 when the three service chiefs of Pakistan, including General Musharraf, who was then the army chief, had refused to come to the Wagah border to greet the visiting Indian leader.
Another noticeable sidelight was the choice of a strapping six-footer Wing Commander Pawan Rishi from the communications squadron to lead the inter-services guard of honour and escort General Musharraf to inspect the 150-strong defence forces contingent.
The selection of a tall parade commander was, according to a section of the media, made deliberately so that the visiting general would have to look up to him at the end of the guard of honour while taking the salute.
PTI
http://www.rediff.com/news/2001/jul/14inpak14.htm
******
According to former Prime Minister, Mr. Chandra Shekhar, Air Chief Marshal A. Y. Tipnis, was right in not saluting General Musharraf. The latter also had broken the protocol by refusing to salute Mr. Vajpayee during his visit to Lahore.
THe Hindu (news paper)
Now to our would be Nobel man Atalji.

Advani, Fernandes pushed PM into ordering air-strikes

George Iype in New Delhi
The decision to launch Operation Vijay, India's biggest peacetime air offensive against Pakistan-backed insurgents in Kashmir, was aggressively pushed forward by Defence Minister George Fernandes and Home Minister L K Advani.
While Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was hesitant to clear the crucial decision to mount an aerial attack on mercenaries holed up in Kargil, official sources said it was Fernandes and Advani who took the initiative to convince him.
Even though the Indian Army had sought the government's permission to involve the Air Force in the Kargil operation, the prime minister was said to be unwilling to agree to the proposal initially.
Officials in the Prime Minister's Office said Vajpayee was initially "not ready to give the go-ahead to launch the air-strike as he felt that it would virtually nullify the Lahore Declaration".
"The prime minister was also worried that any unwarranted move from India at this juncture could lead to a full-fledged war," a senior official told Rediff On The Net.
But the official added that Vajpayee was under considerable pressure from his hawkish defence and home ministers to order air-strikes against the insurgents.
Vajpayee was also said to have been keen on convening a cabinet meeting before giving the nod to Operation Vijay. Since any operation in Kashmir would invite considerable international attention, the prime minister wanted his External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh -- who was away on a foreign tour -- to be in India before the offensive was launched.
But the Army top brass and Fernandes and Advani impressed upon Vajpayee that the government did not have a minute to waste as the movement of militants in Kargil and other areas in the heights was "alarming in numbers and nature".
Thus the army proposal was immediately put before the apex Cabinet Committee on Security on Tuesday morning before the prime minister left for Pondicherry and Sriharikotta.
Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshall Tipnis briefed the CCS about "the ground situation in Kashmir", and the apex cabinet committee that includes the prime minister, the home minister and the defence minister immediately gave its consent to use air power.
Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh was informed of the decision over telephone and told to take care of the international fall-out from Paris and Moscow.
Sources said Fernandes and Advani were insistent that Operation Vijay should be carried out urgently and immediately for different reasons.
Fernandes knew for sure that the Army had failed miserably to detect and prevent the massive infiltration of mercenaries, including Taliban fighters by the Pakistani army in the difficult terrain of Kashmir.
Since the three defence services are under his direct control, Fernandes feared that the opposition parties would mount a scathing attack on him for letting Kashmir fall into the lap of militants.
After battling with the opposition for four months on the controversial dismissal of Navy Chief Admiral Vishnu Bhagwat, the defence minister knew that if he did not act now to flush out the terrorists from Kashmir, he would become an easy target for the opposition and even the ruling coalition partners.
Advani, who launched a pro-active policy in Kashmir upon taking charge as home minister last year, was also caught in a similar predicament. The government's external intelligence agency, the Research and Analysis Wing under Advani's charge too failed to detect the training and movement of more than 600 armed militants in Kargil and the surrounding areas.
Fernandes and Advani were alarmed when the Jammu and Kashmir chief minister flew into New Delhi on Monday morning to inform them that the ongoing military operation to flush out the militants have been completely unsuccessful till then.
The chief minister also warned that an air operation was of utmost necessity as otherwise the combing operation on the ground would take months to achieve its objective.
"Both Fernandes and Advani are unable to explain why their ministries could not anticipate and check the infiltrationof insurgents by Pakistan," Congress external affairs wing chairperson K Natwar Singh told Rediff On The Net.
"The Vajpayee government, and Fernandes and Advani in particular, will be entirely responsible if the air-strikes lead to a full-fledged war in Kashmir," he warned.
According to Singh, by launching this large-scale military offensive in Kargil, the Vajpayee government has proved that it has failed to check militancy in Kashmir and the so-called bus ride and the Lahore Declaration were political stunts.
The Bharatiya Janata Party leaders fear that the air-strikes and India's loss of two aircraft will put the BJP coalition on a mat during in the run up to the Lok Sabha elections in September.
"The opposition parties will portray the increasing tension on the border as an admission of our government's failure to check militancy in Kashmir," a senior BJP politician told Rediff On The Net.
He said the air strikes "are not going to help the BJP in any way in the coming elections". "Our only fear is whether it will affect our chances which are quite good now," the BJP official added.
http://www.rediff.com/news/1999/may/28kash.htm

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby RayC » 29 Jun 2004 18:33

If Tipnis was wearing his Peak Cap, he should have saluted. An Officer and Gentleman cannot be boorish.

Chandrashekhar is no ideal to follow.

Natwar Singh is a what is really 'hot air'. Heard him during Kargil on TV? Sir Oracle and right out of Stoneage in thoughts!His first statement itself after taking over was totally out of synch with reality and what a fool he made of himself and the country after his statement in the US.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Jagan » 29 Jun 2004 18:34

Jumraoji,

I cant read anything there that said vajpayee chided tipnis for not saluting musharaff..dont tell me you wanted to start another urban legend... :)

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Jagan » 29 Jun 2004 18:42

Originally posted by RayC:
If Tipnis was wearing his Peak Cap, he should have saluted. An Officer and Gentleman cannot be boorish.

Chandrashekhar is not ideal to follow.

Natwar Singh is a what is really 'hot air'. Heard him during Kargil on TV? Sir Oracle and right out of Stoneage in thoughts!
http://www.tribuneindia.com/2001/20010715/main6.htm

Sources said that a service chief who represents the three services, according to the rotational principle followed by the defence chiefs, for ceremonial welcomes has the option of either saluting the dignitary or shaking hands with him
If the above is true, Tipnis may well have been within his rights..

:D

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Umrao » 29 Jun 2004 18:43

jagan garu>> I am looking for it (still) but I distinctly remember, Atalji asking him why he did not salute Mushy and AM Tipnis replying I was over come by emotion, to which Atal Uvacha was 'One should not be emotional... blah blah' like small time 'Brinda ' Bihari :)

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Sunil » 29 Jun 2004 19:46

Hi,

Before one rushes to draw conclusions about the article in the Asian Age, it may be important to bear the following things in mind:

1) The KRC report was quite critical of intelligence handling, both the assessed and the unassessed variety. There were clearly a number of gaps in border surveillance and tactics. It can also very reasonably be said that there were issues with the way top level assessments were prepared. The KRC said both things.

2) As elements of the DCA/CS are technically last stage in the analysis process it, it is natural to expect that they will be held responsible by everyone concerned for any gaps in the intelligence process. For its part it is also perfectly understandable if elements of the DCA/CS choose to respond by pointing fingers at the decision makers or the people responsible for tactical inputs.

3) Sri. Kunte's point about the decision makers and Army types being lulled into a sense of complacency is well made but it begs the question "why" such a sense of complacency arose. I strongly believe that is not a question that can be answered in a public debate. A number of BJP functionaries had openly stated that they were lulled into a sense of peace by the success of the Lahore summit. Not one has openly said "why" this was so. It is very cool to blame it all on Vajpayee, but frankly that has as much credibility as Benazir blaming Nawaz for all the ills of Pakistan. Policy is never made in a vacuum.

4) The discussion on the issue of the use of Air Power is part of an age old debate between the Army and IAF. There is nothing very new there. On every fora, the escalatory potential of Air power was highlighted and consequently there was no desire on part of the Govt. to go push the envelop on the use of Air power. One may be willing to accept the contention that perhaps Air Power was not effectively used within existing constraints, but then that opens the door to another range of questions on why there is a gap between the Army and the IAF's perceptions of effectiveness. Again I stress this is not something that can be explored in the public domain.

I am all for public debate on security issues, but only up to the point where a discussion of the issue does not cause more damage.

This discussion on Kargil has alas come too late for the brave young men who died on those hills. So whatever we discuss and suggest from now on we should try to ensure that this kind of mess does not repeat. Whatever be the end result of the discussion (policy research, policy recommendation, policy review etc...) little will be gained by playing a blame game.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby daulat » 29 Jun 2004 20:28

can we reasonably conclude that in future cold start/response to kargils, we would automatically involve an air component to any response and not dither about the escalation problem?

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Vick » 29 Jun 2004 20:43

Daulat, IMO, no.

The use of air power is more political than military, in the Indian context. If the IB or LOC is to be crossed, then the use of air power is certain but if a Kargil type situation arose again, I am willing to bet that the same debates about using (and not using) airpower will again arise.

In an ideal (BRF) world, anytime India's territorial sovreignty is encroached upon, we would like the military and govt to throw everything necessary to safeguard that sovreignty. But in the real world, we see military and govt reluctant to give the 100% of response that a Kargil type situation requires. Some wanted to only put in 80% of the response but wanted 100% of the results from the guys at the front. This has been the case in every major Indian armed conflict, from Sri Lanka to Kargil.

And regarding the saluting issue...
We are still debating whether it was ok for the service chief(s) not to salute. :roll: It is true, we are like this onlee.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby ramana » 29 Jun 2004 20:46

I recall reading somewhere that there was a mutual 150km air exclusion zone near the LOC. I believe that wont be honored anymore.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby daulat » 29 Jun 2004 21:10

Originally posted by ramana:
I recall reading somewhere that there was a mutual 150km air exclusion zone near the LOC. I believe that wont be honored anymore.
IMHumbleO there should be IAF redlines, on crossing which anything 150km of the LOC in that direction is fair game. i suggest the threshold begins with the detection of unnanounced movements of PA units or any thing that looks like a 'mujjie' movement and action kicks in on detection of LOC crossing.

but then I am a jingo onlee!

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Umrao » 29 Jun 2004 21:37

There will never be any 'Decisive and fitting' reply to any aggressor on Indian institutions or territory.

That much is guaranteed, proof the much hyped BJP itself buckled up after back tracking one stand after another. (simple example Of Bdesh rifles torturing BSF men went unanswered, forget Pakis perched on Kargil mountains)

Does that mean India will not defend itself, it would as always to a stalemate end.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Naidu » 29 Jun 2004 21:38

Originally posted by ramana:
I recall reading somewhere that there was a mutual 150km air exclusion zone near the LOC. I believe that wont be honored anymore.
I believe it was more in the order of 15 km, not 150 km. Both AFs have air bases within a 150 km range of the border/LOC. I'm not sure if that is honoured any longer.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby RayC » 29 Jun 2004 21:46

I sure would know who was the 'source' who said Tipnis has the prerogative. The Defence Service Regulations is silent on this issue. Some GOI letter?

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby NRao » 29 Jun 2004 21:48

The use of air power is more political than military, in the Indian context.
Yes and no. Yes because the civilians have to give the OK. No because there is the foriegn component that has in the past played a role to cool the Indian Govt. CS would be failure if foriegn govt are able to beat CS to the punch.

If the IB or LOC is to be crossed, then the use of air power is certain but if a Kargil type situation arose again, I am willing to bet that the same debates about using (and not using) airpower will again arise.
In Kargil they did cross the LoC. However, IAF was not allowed to cross the border. Because of some starnge agreement with Unkil. BUT, this agreement came into force because army could not get to the border fast enough (other factors too). CS is supposed to beat the cycle of TSP getting time to consult with foriegn govts and those govts putting pressure on India.

In an ideal (BRF) world, anytime India's territorial sovreignty is encroached upon, we would like the military and govt to throw everything necessary to safeguard that sovreignty. But in the real world, we see military and govt reluctant to give the 100% of response that a Kargil type situation requires. Some wanted to only put in 80% of the response but wanted 100% of the results from the guys at the front. This has been the case in every major Indian armed conflict, from Sri Lanka to Kargil.
CS goes beyond that. "Safegaurd" has been re-defined as if we need to we will cross the border and do whatever it takes as long as the nuclear threshold is not crossed. CS is more than a military "response". It puts a lot of pressure on countries (like Japan) to pre-think (a very new concept to them) of the possibilites, for the simple reason that the next time around, by the time they think Indian Forces (IF) (not just IA) may have acted and come back too. The way I look at it (my best guess) is that IFs have a pre-approved set of actions when something very predictable happens.

More to all this.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby putnanja » 30 Jun 2004 00:55

Commander ordered capture of Point 5353 in Kargil war

Major Mehra's men were asked to evict the Pakistani intruders on Point 5353 by 6 a.m. on May 18, 1999. The officer's plan was to set up three fire bases along the base of the peak to support the infantry assault by two groups.

Although backed by some artillery, both groups faced a difficult climb, under direct fire from both the Pakistani positions on Point 5353 and Point 5165.

However, Major Mehra's despatches note, his commanding officer, Col. Pushpinder Oberoi, gave specific orders "to go for it at any cost." Col. Oberoi's troops failed to execute his instructions. Ill-equipped for the extreme cold, and not properly acclimatised to the altitude, the troops withdrew after suffering 13 casualties. The attack was finally called off at 3 a.m. on May 19, 1999.

...

sSubsequently, the local commanders hammered out a deal, where both agreed to leave points 5353, 5240, 4251 and 4875 unoccupied.

Towards October-end, for reasons still not clear, the 16 Grenadiers were ordered to take Point 5240 and the 1-3 Gurkha Rifles Point 5353. While the 16 Grenadiers' attack proceeded as planned, despite bad weather, the 1-3 Gurkha Rifles, for reasons still not clear, never made their way up to Point 5353. When the Pakistani troops detected the Indian presence on 5240, they promptly reoccupied Point 5353.

Interestingly, however, the 16 Grenadiers' records on the Point 5353 assault refer to Point 5353 as "a minor objective." So too, do entries in Col. Oberoi's confidential service records. This assessment was vindicated during the artillery clashes in 2001-2002, when the Pakistani observation posts on Point 5353 were unable to bring accurate fire to bear on either the highway or nearby Indian positions. The Indian troops were able to tie down the Pakistani position with accurate fire, rendering it near-impossible for its superior altitude to be used to good effect.


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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Ashutosh » 30 Jun 2004 00:58

The dates seem fishy to me :confused:

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby ramana » 30 Jun 2004 05:16

RayC, Could you please take a look at these two BRM article and comment? 1)Kargil Surprise: How and Why?
http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/MONITOR/ISSUE1/BR-MON7.html

2)KARGIL REVIEW COMMITTEE: A COMMENTARY
Link: http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/MONITOR/ISSUE2-6/ramana.html

Thanks, ramana

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby RayC » 30 Jun 2004 11:41

Originally posted by ramana:
RayC, Could you please take a look at these two BRM article and comment? 1)Kargil Surprise: How and Why?
http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/MONITOR/ISSUE1/BR-MON7.html

2)KARGIL REVIEW COMMITTEE: A COMMENTARY
Link: http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/MONITOR/ISSUE2-6/ramana.html

Thanks, ramana
E mail id?

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby daulat » 30 Jun 2004 16:48

niranjan rao's prethink concept is important, shift to cold start thread? (see my point there)

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby ramana » 30 Jun 2004 18:43

RayC, ramana_56 at yahoo dot com
Thanks.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby RayC » 30 Jun 2004 19:50

Ramana,

I have done one. But still looking for more info. Will send shortly.

Added later:

Sent both. 30 June 04, 2156 hours

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Aditya G » 30 Jun 2004 21:12

Old Thread in Trash Can Archive

excuse me? Does the word "Archive" ring a bell? :roll:

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby putnanja » 01 Jul 2004 00:41

From Asian Age, posting in full as it is not archived...

The dismay over Ismay’s system
- By Admiral J.G. Nadkarni (Retd)

The recent controversy about the use of air power and its timing in the Kargil episode of 1999 is both unwarranted and inconclusive. Fortunately, the Air Chief during the period and the defence ministry have not muddied the waters further by refusing to take part in the issue and make comments. The erstwhile Army chief has offered his own explanation. This should see an end to the unnecessary dispute.

Hindsight is a very dangerous thing. Many events or results do not necessarily follow logic or conventional wisdom. The United States and its allies used extensive air power during the Vietnam War. It was also totally one-sided. Their warplanes dropped more bombs in the North than those delivered in World War II.

Conventional wisdom would conclude that North Vietnam would have been bombed into abject surrender. History tells us otherwise. It would thus be reckless to predict what might have been had air power been used earlier at Kargil. The raking up of the controversy, however, does help to underline the fact that joint execution of war is far from perfect in India even 50 years after Independence.

During World War II, it became clear that all future wars would have to be fought jointly and that each of the three services of a country, would play vital roles in the execution of such wars. Subsequently, most of the countries updated their higher defence organisations to meet the requirements of jointmanship. The US fine-tuned the system of Joint Chiefs of Staff and the United Kingdom opted for the Chief of Defence Staff. In one form or the other such systems have been functioning quite satisfactorily in most western countries.

India’s higher defence organisation, hastily put together by Field Marshal Auchinleck’s chief of staff, General Ismay, during the last days of the British Raj has been with us more or less in the same form ever since. The organisation called for a Chiefs of Staff Committee presided over by one of the chiefs, and various other committees to ensure regular interaction between the politicians, bureaucrats and the services. The Chiefs of Staff Committee had various sub committees for planning, operations, training, personnel etc, to ensure that all these aspects which are necessary for the successful prosecution of war would be jointly planned and executed. To ensure perfect cooperation between the three services, India even set up the National Defence Academy where cadets from all the services are trained together. The institution, the first of its kind when set up, is the role model for many such training schools in the world. Yet despite these preparations, higher defence in India still creaks along without much jointmanship and planning. Each service draws up its own plans and prosecutes war more or less independently of the other. The lack of jointmanship can be illustrated from the fact that the three services do not even have a joint operations room.

Why doesn’t an organisation which works so well in other countries not work in India? There are many reasons for this, both historical and attitudinal. To make an organisation work each person and level in the organisation must know its responsibility and duty. Ismay’s organisation worked comparatively well during the initial years. Although, the top rung, the politicians, were inexperienced in matters of defence they did not have inhibitions in consulting the professionals. Service chiefs were called for Cabinet meetings when matters of defence were discussed.

Unfortunately, this situation changed quite soon, when military leaders began to stage coups and take over governments in the neighbourhood. Confidence in the services changed to paranoia about a take-over by the services. One by one the various committees and formal meetings set up in the Ismay organisation to ensure regular interaction between the services and the political leadership were either discarded or watered down. Today the service chiefs are rarely called, if at all, for advice on defence matters. The rule is basically "keep them in their place." The political leaders appear more comfortable with the advice of bureaucrats, scientific advisers and civilian advisers. The services were kept totally out of the loop even when it came to exercising India’s nuclear option. Even the recent CBMs on nuclear issues between India and Pakistan found no service representative in the Indian delegation.

The bureaucrats played not an insignificant part in this turn of events. Gradually, since 1947, the bureaucrat has arrogated to himself the role of the principal adviser to the political boss in the defence ministry, sidelining the service chiefs in the process. Supremacy of the civil has gradually evolved into supremacy of the civil servant. No defence organisation can run where the heads of the armed forces are reduced to ciphers by the politicians and the bureaucrats.

The second important reason why a Higher Defence Organisation does not function properly in India is the lopsided strength of the Army. India’s Army is 20 times the size of the Navy and 10 times the size of the Air Force. This has resulted in an out-of-proportion voice to the Army in any defence matter, be it a joint plan or joint operation. The government’s attitude was wisely summed up by a defence minister when he said informally, "We listen to the Army carefully, we humour the Air Force and we ignore the Navy." That attitude remains to this day. No joint organisation can exist or function properly where one service overwhelmingly dominates the other two. To function, even with some success, it requires an Army chief with some degree of magnanimity and humility, who will accept that the other two services also have something to contribute, qualities which are sadly lacking in most incumbents of that important post. Obviously, this particular handicap to the effective functioning of jointmanship will remain with us for a long time.

There is a naive belief, especially among Army officers, that the solution to the present problem is the appointment of the Chief of Defence Staff. The CDS will only alter the organisation, not the attitudes of the people in power. The CDS is meant to be the single point adviser to the Prime Minister and Cabinet. But if the past is anything to go by, the CDS will rarely be called by the Cabinet to give advice on defence matters. The National Security Adviser will feel that it is his prerogative to brief the PM and the Cabinet on security matters. So the CDS will end up as the adviser to the NSA, who in turn will brief the Cabinet. That is if the CDS happens to be an Army officer. If the CDS is a Navy or an Air Force officer, he will be either ignored or humoured.

As far as joint planning and execution of operations is concerned these will suffer from the same drawbacks as exist today. Any organisation can be effective if the people at the top understand its need and want to make it work. There is nothing which prevents the Prime Minster or the Cabinet from seeking the advice of the chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee on professional matters. No organisation can be effective if the leaders do not understand its need or ignore its functioning. But Indians refuse to learn from history. In a few years’ time another committee will be constituted when we find that the CDS is not functioning properly. And then we will change the whole set-up again.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby ramana » 01 Jul 2004 22:49

RayC, Thanks for the quick response. Will reply offline.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Aditya G » 02 Jul 2004 00:18

thx for your links and articles Ravi. :cool:

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Sunil » 03 Jul 2004 23:26

Hi,

I was just reading Op Bluestar the true story by Gen. Brar, and I chanced upon the account of the 1 Para attack on Darshani Deori. The account states that 1 Para section under Major. Prakash Chand Katoch took heavy casualties in the attack and Major Katoch and his 2iC were casualties. The account does not specify the nature of his casualty.

IIRC the CO 102 Inf Bde at Kargil time was also named Prakash Chand Katoch. Are these the same person or am I getting something wrong?

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Aditya G » 03 Jul 2004 23:38

From the latest BR Updates;

NUBRA FORMATION

GROUP CAPTAIN AK SINHA VrC

The complete operation was a perfect team work of the ground crew, air crew and the controlling staff.
Is he saying that even though one chopper was lost to enemy action, the mission was a success?

:confused:

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby Umrao » 07 Jul 2004 20:42

http://us.rediff.com/news/2004/jul/07spec4.htm

Why did Kargil happen?

No soul in government can give you a credible answer. Whatever be the government's own claim, Kargil was a surprise. The government bungled before the war broke out. India's military and intelligence establishments erred in assessing the indicators.

It came as a shock for the Kargil Review Committee (headed by defence analyst K Subrahmanyam) when a lady officer at Army Headquarters told it that General Ved Prakash Malik, then chief of army staff, got a report of intrusions by Pakistanis a day before he was to leave for Poland on an official visit. General Malik instructed his office not to forward the report until his return. The Kargil Review Committee did not, however, pursue this matter.

It must be acknowledged, however, that when war actually broke out General Malik and the government acted well.

Did the euphoria caused by then prime minister Vajpayee's bus ride to Lahore cause the government to take its eye off the ball? Is that why Kargil happened?

Looking at the published facts one can only say that the government was naïve to trust the Pakistani establishment. It was swayed by a 'peace fever.' Across the board there was a craving for friendship with Pakistan. Military and intelligence personnel neglected all indicators about General Pervez Musharraf's duplicity.

So the Kargil war was an intelligence failure.

Yes and no. Our intelligence set-up got the inputs, but failed in the assessment of these inputs.

Kargil also showed our military leaders in poor light. Even when they started getting reports of the intrusion, they underplayed it, at high cost. Defence Minister George Fernandes termed it, initially, a 'small intrusion.' Even a cursory look at the newspapers of April-May 1999 make the government's attempt to underplay the event evident.

There is an interesting anecdote in this connection. When the Kargil report came out, a senior and highly respected retired intelligence officer sought an appointment with Vajpayee. He was unhappy with the report. Vajpayee heard him out patiently. When the meeting was about to get over, he said: 'Bataiye Kargil kyon hua?'

The ageing sleuth said in anguish, 'Chowkidar sow gaya tha, ab shikayat kar raha hai humko sone kyon diya!" (The army was asleep on the borders and now it is asking why was it allowed to sleep by intelligence!)
This is DUMB and exposes how shallow this Shiela But is.

In New Delhi, there was utter confusion about Pakistan's tests. Indian experts had dismissed Pakistan's nuclear programme as China's baby. But since 1998, <u>not one Pakistani nuclear-capable missile has failed.</u> On the other hand, India has seen several failures.

Islamabad's programmes can no longer simply be dismissed as stolen or bought. Their successful tests show that Pakistani scientists are a confident lot and the country has the capacity to enhance its nuclear and delivery capability. Kargil must be examined in this light.

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Re: Kargil Revisited - Thread 3

Postby ramana » 08 Jul 2004 00:49

Especially on BRF we are still trying to figure out what and why did Kargil happen. Hence the -3 thread. I think she brings new info to the table and that should be evaluated/assessed. I am still gathering info on the subject and welcome all scraps.


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