Kargil Revisited

Babui
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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Babui » 28 Jun 2003 01:16

Didn't they cross the LoC in Nov ? Nov to May is 6 mths. Half their manpower were porters. Add in some heli resupply missions, forward supply bases like Muntho Dalo and you have a well-supplied enemy. I presume that you don't need as much ammunition (as you would in the plains) to hold the heights.
Captured Paki's complained of starvation - so one presumes that their porters carried more ammunition than food.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby debjani » 28 Jun 2003 01:25

John,

Again this is the popular image of a commando that you ascribe to Musharraf. Commandos are also as human as beings as you and me. They have merely more skills. But they are not Rambos. In fact, there is nothing like a Rambo.

We too have used quick setting cement. There are not so miraculous as one would like to believe.

But forget everything. I grant everything that is being said. But do consider, WEIGHT and the MANPOWER/ MULES/ HELICOPTERS required to carry in that weight! And that too in FOUR months. Carry out a staff check and you will get the answer.

Since you know about cement. How much cement and sand and water [a firewood to melt ice][aggregate also?]would be required to build a cement bunker that would stand a Medium shell [73.6 kgs]. What would the weight be?

As far as PGMs, one hit and shown on TV. It does not mean that there were steel and concrete bunkers. PGM is Precision Guidied Munition. We wanted a pinpoint hit since Tiger Hill was overlooking NH1A. Arty shells, as you would be aware, are area weapons. Some fall on the target, some go over and some fall short for various technical reasons. So PGMs are required. Remember Krasnapol?

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 28 Jun 2003 01:27

I believe, Lt Gen Bami's book gives some estimate and so the the other book Blood on Snow.


Ray,
Really appreciate it if you can post Lt Gen Bamis estimate or the other books. Unfortunately dont have access to them.
Thanx!!

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby debjani » 28 Jun 2003 01:39

Originally posted by Babui:
Didn't they cross the LoC in Nov ? Nov to May is 6 mths. Half their manpower were porters. Add in some heli resupply missions, forward supply bases like Muntho Dalo and you have a well-supplied enemy. I presume that you don't need as much ammunition (as you would in the plains) to hold the heights.
Captured Paki's complained of starvation - so one presumes that their porters carried more ammunition than food.
1. No they did not cross in Nov.
2. Please remember that helicopter or aircraft payload and all up weight reduces in high altitude drastically [by half if I remember correctly].
3. If a Brigade worth was on ground and half of that were porters, then ther would be a huge force. Remember, the turnaround was not one day. Therefore, the porters too would require food!
4. If Pakis complained of starvation, then it debunks the claim that the Pakis has 6 mths supply and the Indian Army was eating Pakistani food!
5. Prefab or cement quicksetting and STEEL. They are HEAVY. Just calculate the weight of all the items that are being said, by various people, that they carried and imagine the weight that is being suggested to ahve been carried by mules/ porters/ helicopters. Also, dont forget it is HIGH ALTITUDE. Don't forget the blizzards and the biting cold, the avalanches that the Pak officer writes in his diary.
6. How are telephone cables intercepted by Radio Telephony?

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby putnanja » 28 Jun 2003 01:41

Ray,
Have you ever thought about writing about your experiences during Kargil? With your first hand experience, I am sure it will be a treasure house of information. If you can write an account in BR monitor, it would be great!!

Admins, how about contacting Ray and other retired personnel for a regular column in the BR about their experiences and the interesting things that they have seen/done? Something light along with the usual heavy artillery stuff:cool: stuff ? :cool:

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Umrao » 28 Jun 2003 01:43

Thanks folks and Ray shaib for your patience with me.

I went back to the knowledgebase called BR
and re read this again http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/History/Kargil/Shenag.html

It appears that the tents were not permenant structures but some kind of camping equipment.

Also realistically speaking why would one build cement structures there. They could as well carve out a cave if the ice/temp is really that low to form good solid ice during winter. Just watch the latest 007 movie :) . Besides I think ice is very good adiabatic insulation itself.

All in all truth seems to be some where frozen on top of those Kargil hills, mostly in the form of Paki corpse all over.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Roop » 28 Jun 2003 01:46

How are telephone cables intercepted by Radio Telephony?
They are not, and that is Aditya's point. The Pakis used the telephone, to avoid the need for wireless. Ergo, no interceptions.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 28 Jun 2003 01:52

I believe this article is relevant to this discussion.

This is a story from Time Magazine about a paki porters/troopers experience

http://www.time.com/time/asia/asia/magazine/1999/990712/soldier1.html

The salient points
1. He crossed over in February - unarmed
2. His job was to prepare some makeshift bunkers
3. First 5 days he had Energile and ice for food.
4. Food came in via Mi17
5. There is no instant resupply, so he had to be very careful.
6. We had no proper bunkers, so we dug a 5-m tunnel into the snow.
7. We also suffered a lot of casualties, many more than officials in Pakistan are claiming.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby debjani » 28 Jun 2003 02:04

Indeed they used caves and caverns rather ingenuously. One of the Commanders in the batalik sector ahs an excellent photo of their using a small cave as a Command Post.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Arun A » 28 Jun 2003 02:07

A.H. Amin again..

Wars of opportunism

Opportunism and self-projection is the motive wars degenerate into petty soldiering and a sheer waste of resources. This was the case with the Kargil Blunder of 1999 which was essentially an exercise in self projection and led to at least 400 fatal casualties and at least 1,500 wounded. This operation exposed the strategic ineptitude in subcontinental armies where operations are launched without taking into account ground friction, logistic factors and without strategic insight.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby JCage » 28 Jun 2003 02:42

Ray,
Welcome back!

So did we use Cargo shells or not?

(Perhaps,a few might have been supplied by SAfrica's Denel.But production in India is iirc yet to commence-we are still in talks with Israel for that).

If not thats one more strike against Sawant-is his book worth anything in terms of historical record?

Aditya,

Nice stuff.

The Pakistanis factored in the IAF only to a very limited degree.

Two things-the PAF was kept out of the loop totally and when informed penultimately[Qadir],they chickened out and didnt come forward to help the PA any.This is TYPICAL of the PAF attitude I may add and the lack of in depth interservice cooperation is a big plus point for India.Case in point-the Atlantique shootdown-the Pakistan Navy's plane was happily loafing on a provocative SIGINT mission with no PAF escort! In contrast when IN EW Do.228's snooped on Paki emissions,we used Mig29's as escort all the while.

Also take Nawaz's account of Kargil in Gulf News iirc.
In that he quotes Musharraf as saying "sahib we didnt anticipate the IAF and IAF is doing area bombing".

So-
They anticipated airpower but not full blown IAF involvement MiGs etc not just Choppers.As is usual PAF was informed only half heartedly and PAF reciprocated by sitting out the war!

------------------------------------------
Re PGM's Ray is (need it be said) 100% correct.

PGM's were not just for bunkers but for accurate strikes at areas which were protected b natural features, not visible to artillery and whose location deterred conventional "dumb" iron bombing.

Thx to SHiv, BR members got to hear a first hand account of Safed Sagar long back.
While my memory is fuzzy,one incident narrated stands out---

A Mig27 piloted by a young fresh out of school pilot set out to bomb a encampment located on one of the "prime features"..the camp was beautifully disguised in the snow and besides which it was protected by rock .The 27 pilot to seniors-"sir,have faith,i wont miss".

But the camp was deemed moreorless impossible to hit with a dumb bomb.Hence the 27 was followed by a Mirage with a LGB to knock the camp off once the Mig 27 failed.(Assumed to be moreorless certain given the task at hand).

The 27 pilot -greenhorn ---- guages aim point precisely, textbook perfect launch-----camp destroyed.First shot- target taken out with a single iron bomb! No need for the LGB.

That says it all for teh effort put in by all the services involved in Kargil,i guess.
--------------------------------------------------

Regards,
Nitin

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby JCage » 28 Jun 2003 03:27

Re:
Cargo.

Official press release stuff,seems to indicate we had cargo in 1988 but not conclusive.

http://www.rediff.com/news/1998/oct/27bofors.htm
For George the Bofors boomed!

And the Bofors gun boomed again. Right on target, right in front of Union Defence Minister George Fernandes.

The venue was the School of Artillery, Deolali, Maharashtra. And the occasion? Well, an exercise to show of the mighty howitzer.

The much-talked-about gun, incidentally, is deployed along Indian borders thanks to features like auto-loading, capability to fire from high and low angles, and precision.

At the firepower show -- Exercise Topchi -- the defence minister took a keen interest in the gun, discussing its capabilities with the School of Artillery Commandant Lieutenant General Madan Bhandari.

Firing the Bofors gun, known as the 155 mm field howitzer 77b, was the highlight of the show. Besides high-explosive shells, it also fires smoke, smoke infrared, and illuminating and special cargo shells.

Another highlight was the 22 mm grad bm21 multibarrel self-propelled rocket launcher. Mounted on a Ural truck, it can fire a salvo of 40 rockets in 20 seconds.

Fernandes also witnessed the 122 mm howitzer d-30, 130 mm field gun and mortar launchers in action.

UNI


This by Bedi.
The Indian Express
Thursday, June 3, 1999 (Indian Express Front Page)

INDIA SHOPS ABROAD FOR AMMUNITION

by Rahul Bedi

NEW DELHI, JUNE 2: India is concluding
negotiations to buy around 100,000 rounds of
varied ordnance from abroad to replenish
ammunition expended over several weeks in the
Kargil conflict for around Rs 200 crore.

Military sources in New Delhi said the
Ministry of Defence (MoD) was finalising
agreements with Denel of South Africa to
provide around 25,000 rounds of 155-mm shells
for around $1000 apiece for its FH 77B Bofors
howitzers, deployed in large numbers near
Kargil, close to the Line of Control (LoC).

While the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) does
make 130-mm shells, military sources say the
numbers in stock were insufficient. The Army
needs to maintain war wastage reserves of
equipment for times of conflict but over the
years these have, unfortunately, been rather
on the lower side.

The sources said the agreement for the
ordnance purchase will be finalised by the end
of the week and the rounds will be airlifted
from the respective countries and start
trickling in by mid-June.

The Army is daily expending hundreds of rounds
of artillery shells and mortar rounds to
counter Pakistan's barrage across the LoC that
is sustaining the insurgents holding strategic
ridges and pushing back India's advancing
columns fighting to dislodge them.

............................

Day and Zimmermann had also supplied India
40,000 rounds of 155-mm cargo ammunition in
late 1980s for around $ 80 million when the
Boforshowitzers were imported, including the
data package, to make them locally, an option
that too remains foreclosed.


Projected as Asia's largest munitions factory,
the Badmal ordnance facility was set up to
annually produce 200,000 Barmines, 200,000
155-mm rounds, 150,000 125-mm rounds and large
quantities of 30-mm ammunition for BMP's
besides various fuses and detonators.

The fuse plant for 30-mm shells at Badmal has
been set up by KINTEX of Bulgaria while
Meissner GmbH & Co of Koln in Germany has
installed the unit to make automatic
detonators capable of activating large calibre
ammunition and fuses.
Badmal was delayed by Yank sanctions but ultimately set up nonetheless.

Re Cargo.
So stuff might still have been around at time of Kargil but I'd go with Ray over Bedi etc anyday!

Regards,
Nitin

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 28 Jun 2003 03:28

Dos anybody have the Herald (Dawn Group) article on Kargil? It should be included in this thread

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby svinayak » 28 Jun 2003 04:07

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE KARGIL CRISIS
http://www.rand.org/publications/MR/MR1450/
The import of the Kargil crisis was generally very different for bothcountries. While Pakistan appears to have concluded that Kargil-likeoperations are not likely to be successful for many reasons andtherefore are not attractive as a matter of state policy, Pakistanhas not concluded that violence in general is an illegitimate meansfor altering the status quo. Pakistan will continue to pursue low-intensity operations within the context of its Kashmir policy, incor-porating as best it can ordinary Kashmiris' alienation from India insupport of larger political objectives. One of the reasons why futureKargil-like episodes are seen as not likely to be successful is Pak-istan's understanding that the conflict subverted Pakistan's positioninternationally while simultaneously retarding its ability to focus oneconomic and social renewal domestically.What remains to be explicated is Pakistan's continual willingness totake on such risks. In fact, several Pakistani writers have questionedPakistan's foray into Kargil, comparing it with the 1965 war as a fine
example of why Pakistan should resist such adventurism.56Moregenerally, prior to launching this operation, Islamabad should wellhave comprehended India's ability to inflict pain on Pakistan. Pak-istan's risk acceptance is revisited in the next chapter.Most of Kargil's significance for India can be seen in terms of theconflict's impact on bilateral relations with Pakistan. India believesPakistan to be fundamentally untrustworthy and capable of acting inways that appear to be completely irrational and astrategic. This hasstrengthened the Indian determination to resolve the Kashmir issuewithout acknowledging Pakistan's equities in the manner desired byIslamabad. Kargil also occasioned reconsideration of India's per-ception of its security and its intelligence apparatus: in particular,Kargil strengthened the belief that Pakistani surprises can and willoccur with potentially dangerous results and that they consequentlymerit anticipatory preparation in India. Kargil also revealed to Indiathat select aspects of international attention-particularly to Pak-istan's misconduct-have significant utility for its grand strategy.Finally, Kargil demonstrated India's ability to dexterously influencethe media to shape the domestic and the international response

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Rangudu » 28 Jun 2003 04:20

Originally posted by bishwa:
Dos anybody have the Herald (Dawn Group) article on Kargil? It should be included in this thread
I agree. The article in question is in this issue of Herald

Can anyone get hold of back issues from Herald magazine published by the DAWN group.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 28 Jun 2003 23:41

There are over 500 flags flying across the entire Northern Areas, home to the Pakistan Army’s high-altitude warriors.

A question for those who are aware of muslim customs:

Can a tomb be built for someone whose body is not there? If there are 500 tombs in NA does that mean there are 500 bodies buried there?

If this is true and we were to add the 245 dead the IA buried in Kargil, 5 handed over, we get a figure of 750 dead. Plus we need to account for the bodies which were buried in other provinces.

strangely the Indian estimate of the PA dead are 45 officers and 704 other ranks had been killed.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Aditya G » 30 Jun 2003 21:20

Gaurav Sawant : Dateline Kargil, pg 138

The efficient PA had beaten back sporadic attacks by the IA to recapture the peaks both in Batalik and in Drass and Mushkoh. So now it was concerted effort in all three sub-sectors simultaneously. Of course, after more or less securing the highway to Leh in end June, the focus of offensive shifted to Batalik.

The artillery units that were focusing on Drass Mountains were moved to Batalik. The army did have teething troubles in Drass but having learnt its lesson once, the same mistakes were by and large not repeated in Batalik. A SF unit was airlifted into Batalik and sent to scout for enemy defences and strengths both on the peaks and across the LoC.

"Gentlemen, tonight you will embark on a mission of which I have no knowledge if am asked. I am sending you but, God forbid, if something happens to you, I'll not have enough powers to retrieve you. You are going as a voluntary force and because of your love for the motherland. But if asked, I shall say you are the figment of somebody's imagination," the senior Batalik Brigade officer told a special section of the elite Para Commandos.

Their task was to scout for enemy concentrations, gun positions and reserves across the LoC, destroy them if possible or atleast come back with coordinates. The commandos left and returned successfully four days later. What they did was a mystery. The Paras, according to officers, went beyond enemy strongholds in Indian Territory, into the area that Pakistan claims is disputed and bombed Pakistani stores in Shangruti. The when and how of their operations never came out. It is still shrouded in glorious mystery.

The IA wanted to send up troops but feared un-necessary loss of life as troops going up would not be able to sustain themselves for long. The alternative was to cut off the enemy sustenance level too. The enemy, as aerial pictures of dominated peaks indicated, had supply lines from Shangruti and Muntho Dhalo. Pakistan had been claiming that parts of Shangruti belonged to them but the IA insisted otherwise. "But the fact of the matter was that the Pakistanis had setup admin bases there. The IAF repeatedly bombed Shagruti but when bombs are dropped from 31,000 ft altitude their chances of finding the mark are reduced considerably. Therefore, we had to send Para Commandos to knock off the supply base, even if temporarily," confided an officer.

The commandos succeeded in their mission. Soon more cannons moved into the Batalik sector and by the last week of June had been set in motion to destroy the Pakistani might on the Batalik heights.
> Can one of the BR gurus __please__ post stuff from the IAF AFD99 journal about the the Kargil War? esp stuff by Wg Cdr Anil Kumar Sinha? pictures would also be nice.

> Can we rename this thread to "Kargil Revisited (II)" since we would like to have a series of such threads for the BRF archives.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Aditya G » 01 Jul 2003 20:49

<B>Ray</B> saheb, some clarifications are required!:

(a) Indeed if that be correct, how come that the Indian Army even during peacetime conditions and along proper mule tracks and mountain roads take more than 6 to 7 months to stock for the winter that last 5 months at best? Rather inefficient an army to say the least, I must say. What would be the weight of such rations that last 6 months and that have such delicacies as meat, honey and oranges apart from the standard rations?

(b) Further, when the Pakistanis came in [about a Brigade worth or more], they would have also brought in ammunition for at least their rifles, platoon mortars, battalion mortars, MMGs, etc? You state that were geared for six months. What would be the weight of such ammunition they would have carried apart from the weight of the said weapons? All carried manpack? A man can carry about 15 kgs manpack in High Altitude unless you claim that Pakistanis are supermen. What would be the porter train like? Now if everything was delivered by helicopters it would be like a beehive disturbed! If mules were used how many mules would have been required? Indeed, if such happened and the troops failed to see it, then they were bloody useless. Therefore, it would be fair to surmise that helicopters were not swarming logistics nor were large mule caravans!

You must also note that kargil heights are without trees. Surely, they cooked. So, would they have firewood? If so, who carried that and that too a six month supplies? If they banked on Kerosene, that would be heavier than firewood. Who carried the six month supply?

Just add up the weight of the weapons, ammunition, kerosene oil and rations including the honey, oranges and meat. And of course, we must not forget, the steel and cement for the bunkers which you state they built! They weight carried would be colossal and that too they ferried it in four months!

Let’s say they carried it, for argument’s sake, are you suggesting that they did so in four months i.e. Feb to May? If they did, they could not have moved such large supplies along the spines of the mountain that too covered with deep snow in four months. Therefore, how did they do it? In comparison, the Indian Army takes five to six months for their winter stocking, in peacetime conditions and along proper tracks and roads and on terrain they are familiar with, a factor the Pakistanis did not possess i.e. know the ground!!! I leave it to you to judge the soundness of your contentions.
.
.
But do consider, WEIGHT and the MANPOWER/ MULES/ HELICOPTERS required to carry in that weight! And that too in FOUR months. Carry out a staff check and you will get the answer.
"They had built up their stores over for almost 6 months."

By the above statement I mean stores were built up over six months and NOT stores that could <I>last 6 months.</I>

The basis of most of my arguments is Lt Muhammed Maaz Ullah Khan Sumbal (8 NLI)'s personal diary. I will try to post some extracts later, I assure you that copying-typing from a book is not my favorite way to kill time. But anyway here is a news item from Pioneer about his diary:

Dil Se makes fine dish for wartime Pak officer

Muhammad Maaz Ullah Khan Sumbal has written this in his personal diary. Sumbal is Lieutenant of 8 Northern Light Infantry of Pakistan and was shelling on Indian land and people from point 4812 in Batalik sector

Alok Tomar / New Delhi

"Low clouds down to earth and snow fall with strong winds. Kept listening to music -- Dil Se and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai."
Muhammad Maaz Ullah Khan Sumbal has written this in his personal diary. Sumbal is Lieutenant of 8 Northern Light Infantry of Pakistan and was shelling on Indian land and people from point 4812 in Batalik sector. The officer even stole time to watch Doli Saja ke Rakhna on Zee cinema. A dish in the time of war!

The diary of the Pakistan's Army officer was recovered by the Indian Army when they recaptured the height after an intensive and bloody operation. The lieutenant fled. But not before writing the detailed first person account of the involvement of Pakistan's Army in the infiltrations in Kargil, Dras and Batalik sectors across the Line of Control.

On January 2, the Pakistani officer, according to his diary, reached Skardu, one of the entry points for Pak-sponsored militants and "joined a good team of officers". Next day he travelled in a jeep to Dassu, a closer point of the LoC. On the next camp, he was "Disappointed as the TV and wireless set were out of order. After few days of arranging supplies for "friends", the officer had a "nice experience of firing the heavy machine gun." A moonlit night inspired the poet in uniform. He wrote -- "Snow covered peaks glistened in the moonlight and made me
nostalgic of the nights of our block in Quetta," in Pakistan.

On one solitude night, the Pak officer, home sick, wrote a poetry by Ahmed Faraz, the noted Pakistani poet: "In Baanchon se dosti achchi nahin faraz/ Kahan tera makaan hai kuch to khayal kar." (It is not good to grow fond of other's area, just remember where your house is). After this poetic bout, the lieutenant fired on the Indian Army post by styre snipe and "enjoyed the nice weather with egg, pudding and Pepsi.

"On March 2, the Lieutenant tested hand grenades close to the Indian post and noted in his diary: "Still the blinds (the Indians) are lying on south western slope about 50 yards down below. No Danger." He was all set to go, according to the pages of his diary, but "could not due to bad weather." The officer and his team made good use of the night in their camp. The Pakistani officers kept themselves busy hunting ducks and waiting for the "real kill" -- the attack.

On Pakistan Day the officer was happy that "we will wear another medal now" which will be "quite senior." He congratulated himself, shot another duck and waited for the weather to clear. Few days after, he reached the site where the Indian Air Force fighter plane was shot down, congratulated Capt. Qammar, who had arrested Nachiketa Desai, and got himself photographed near the remains of the Indian jet fighter.
After this "kick", Lieutenant Sumbal was granted 20 days leave and flew back to Rawalpindi, to return on May 20. Then the action came: "let us go for war", wrote the Pakistani officer. "Indian aircraft bombarded and destroyed. I along with ten jawans reached there to counter the Army action," the officer wrote.

After few blank pages he wrote one single line which conveys more than anything: "lecture on propaganda, subversion and control measures." The diary ends here. It was found in the destroyed Pakistani Army base.

According to official estimates of the Indian Army headquarters, the Pakistani Army has suffered 725 lives of all ranks. 45 of them were officers. Incidently, while the Pakistani diplomatic brigade was trying to convince the world that they will not accept the Line of Control, the maps left by their officers, clearly showed that they were aware of the actuality of sitting in Indian land.
URL: got it from BRF Archives

Also see http://www.armyinkashmir.org/kargil/kargil16.html

It seems that PA has a system of allocating a certain number of "requests" each officer can make for some supplies that are normally are not part of the ration eg: extra cigerretes, liquor, pepsi (!) and even malta!

As far as cement is concerned, I doubt it was available at all places and possibly not used all over the bunker i.e. only here and there. They also had structures that looked like small igloos with them:

<IMG ALIGN="center" SRC="http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/LAND-FORCES/Army/Articles/Article20b.jpg">

Another way the Pakis reduced their logistic burden was to not carry their fallen comrades back home, however, in IA's case every CASEVAC required 6 men (4 men to carry the strecher on the shoulders) - choppers were not available very near to the battlezone.

<HR>

You state that they had telephone cables on reverse slope to avoid RT. How does having telephone cables on reverse slopes have anything to do with RT. RT is Radio Telephony or wireless.
My exact statement (without any editing) is : "Positions often had telephone cables running done the reverse slopes in order to prevent <I>RT intercepts.</I>"

I must admit that I was very relived when I realised that the confusion was only related to angrezi and not some serious holes in facts! I hope that my post is no longer considered uninformed hawkish BS.

<HR>

Let’s say they carried it, for argument’s sake, are you suggesting that they did so in four months i.e. Feb to May?
They started building over the stores before Jan 1999.

The occupation of intrusions areas by Pakistan Army soldiers, supported by the Special Service Group (SSG) personnel, Chitral and Bajaur Scouts was undertaken during April - May 1999.

To speed up the operations, Helicopters, Snow Mobiles and Animal Transport were extensively employed. To enable optimum utilisation of helicopters, forward helipads were constructed by the Pakistan Army very close to the Line of Control in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK)


Source: http://indianairforce.nic.in/airforce/afkargil/pakistaninkargil.htm

<HR>

Further, Aditya states that the Indian Army ate the Pak rations. You never do that. It will surely be poisoned like all areas abandoned like sangars are most likely booby trapped. Any wise enemy would do that.
Exactly! they never did. Always opened the ones that were sealed and threw away the rest. And yes the Pakis did booby trap their fortifications with AP mines - rather cruel weapons of modern war.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Aditya G » 01 Jul 2003 20:55

I think we can believe Sawant simply because we have no reason not to! :

(1) Nitin's info shows that the cargo shelss were not a state secret at time of the war.

(2) While a reporter can make mistakes (and they often do), saying that he is saying i plain lie on the cargos is too unkind. The officer spoke to him directly, so this means he has not put down any rumours in writing.

(3) What I find doubtful is that we fired cargos across the LoC. It is possible that while they were firing at targets both beyond and within the LoC at that moment, only HE shells were fired across while cargos were for the invaders. Sawant could have misinterpreted the officer that they were firing cargos across too.

(4) Was this an instance of IW by the offr? I dont know.

(5) Ray hasn't countered whether cargos were used or not, just demanded a better source. IMHO officially IA may never admit for sometime.

As far as Gaurav Sawant goes, I beleive he wrote that he had sat in a drain outside the Brigade HQ along with 'Tambis' {Madrassis)who were shivering in the cold. First of all, there were no Madras troops there, the ERE being Dogras and secondly, whether you are a Tambi or a Sikh, you all shiver.
I think I remember reading this or something similar, though right now I cant pinpoint which page. However, i can say that the author did not mean 'shivering' in an insulting sort of way, rather his opinion was exactly like yours. He might have got the regiment mixed up.

As an author, you obviously cannot compare him to say, Amarinder Singh. However, being a civilian he brings a different perspective of the war. While defence writing by civilians might still leave much to desire, IMHO Dateline Kagil is probably the best presswallah's book on the war we have.

As far as competence goes, he is probably the best field reporter on defence that we have in India. He is currently with Star News, and I have seen his Sarp Vinash coverage. I found simple things like showing on the camera what the view is like thry a NV device, talking to jawans about their eqpt and vests, going to their barracks etc really nice. His personal connections allow for an inside look, which he admits in his book. Gaurav Sawant is Brig Sawant's son, whose R-Day commentry I have been listening to as far back as memory my goes.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Aditya G » 01 Jul 2003 21:01

> I believe that jehadis may have been employed as fighting porters by the PA, just like we used the Aryans, ladhakis and other locals (albiet unarmed). IMHO if not throughout the war, they were probably involved during the initial stages. Or maybe briefly when the PA troops emplyed in this role rebeled against their commanders.

> If Harinder Baweja is to be believed, there were instances where IA jawans would simply throw dead bodies of the enemy in the gorges in blind rage. If this is indeed true, then I wonder if we included these unlucky folks in the 250 odd we buried.

> From: http://indianairforce.nic.in/airforce/afkargil/pakistaninkargil.htm

It has been assessed from reliable reports that Pakistan Army has suffered total 725 <I>Casualities</I> , which includes 45 officers and 68 SSG Personnel.
.
.
The Indian Army recovered 249 dead bodies from the areas of operations. 197 dead bodies were given burial as per military norms and as per religious rites, 47 dead bodies that were found in shallow trenches were also provided religious rites and five bodies were accepted by Pakistan. This included the dead body of Captain Karnal Sher of 12 NLI Battalion. The ceremonial burial accorded to the dead body of this NLI officer was also covered by the Pakistan television and seen all over the world.
.
.
General Aslam Beg, the erstwhile Pakistan Chief of Army Staff, in an article titled ‘Kargil – The Drop Scene’ published in ‘The Nation’ dated 13 July 1999, [color="red" SIZE=-2](anybody have a link?)</FONT> acknowledged that Pakistan Army had suffered more than 40 officers killed in the last two months. As per reliable sources, Pakistan Army has suffered 45 officers killed and the details of these officers are also given Subsequently.
> Details of pakistani officer casualties (fatal): http://www.armyinkashmir.org/kargil/kargil9.html

From this document, it seems that the PA Aviation at least 3 chopper crashes during this operation in the span of 11 days, which suggests that they did some pretty tough flying:

(1) 13.Jun.1999 - Brig Nusrat Sial Pilot, Cdr 62 Inf Bde + Capt Faiyaz
(2) 14.Jun.1999 - Maj Mohammad Hanif (Pilot) + Capt Aziz (Pilot)
(3) 24.Jun.1999 - Nick Name "Cheeta", 25 SIND + Col Mushraf, CO 1 FF

> http://www.piads.com.pk/users/piads/kargilheroes.html

<I>"The Gallant Men Who Defended the Sacred Soil of Pakistan against Indian Army attacks during the India-Pakistan Jammu & Kashmir Line of Control Conflict"</I>

I tried to match some names from the two lists, some did match but _most_ didn't. I guess not everybody got a gallantry medal. Another reason is the differences in spelling, eg the IA site writes "Ozair" while PIADS writes "Uzair".

(1) Brig Nusrat Sial was possibly the highest ranking fatality of the PA and was awarded the Sitara-e-Basalat:

Died in helicopter crash in Skardu due to bad weather
(2) Major Muhammad Hanif -> Army Aviation -> Sitara-e-Jurat
(3) Major Muhammad Ali Hyderi -> Shaheed -> Baluch Regiment -> Tamgha-e-Basalat
(4) Captain Sardar Izhar Haider -> Shaheed -> Baluch Regiment -> Sitara-e-Jurat (only middle name and rank match)
(5) Captain Muhammad Uzair -> Shaheed -> Army Aviation -> Tamgha-e-Basalat (AA acc to PIADS but IA site doesn't have any info)

I didnt count the number of KIA officers, but maximum entries are in the Tamgha-e-Basalat list. No PA offr got the Tamgha-e-Jurat

> Ray, how would you "rate" the ratio of the number of offrs to ORs killed? Is it high? How dows it compare to the IA figures? Also, how high is their ratio of men killed out of the total of say, 5000 that were involved?

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 01 Jul 2003 21:18

The Indian Army Officer/OR casualty figures for Kargil and 71 are about 1:20.

Assuming 700 OR and 40 Officers the Pakistani Army suffered in the same ratio approx.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby ArunK » 01 Jul 2003 22:21

Calling Aditya.G. Could you contact me please at akolal@comcast.net?

I need to ask you about a document that you had posted on the web a while ago that I had saved and since then lost.

The document was a photocopy of the accession agreement by Maharaja Hari Singh. This document was a True photocopy and contained his signature. If you still have it could you post it on BR or send me a copy please. Many Thanks..

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby debjani » 01 Jul 2003 22:30

Aditya,

1. I am aware Sawant’s father is a Brigdier. He is a Brigadier of the Army Education Corps and was my instructor in the IMA. Amarinder Singh, was a Captain in the Army and Squadron Cadet Captain A Sqn in the NDA. Further, they are Hony Cols of the Sikh Regt. Hence, military stuff is better known to Amarinder.

2. ‘The built up stores over six months’ and ‘not for six months’

OK, but it had to last ‘x’ number of months. Right? Or were they on daily supplies? If they were on daily supply, then there would not be the surfeit of rations that they IA found after capture. Therefore, I cannot understand what you are getting at.

[a] Don’t just go by Press reports. It tends to glamorise. I seriously cannot believe that they had satellite TV also. No wonder they lost because they were not focussed.

[b] May I request you to just focus yourself on one aspect – WEIGHT.

Fine. So they stayed till June? Given that you state they built up store over six months and they were detected in May middle, it means that they were there from December and were building up.

As per the official statements, they were not there in December.

HAA rations is 4.9kgs/per man/day. Now if they Pakistanis had malta, pepsi, Satellite Dishes etc add more. Calculate:

[i] Total weight of rations required for a Brigade plus of infiltrators. Let’s say it would be 3000 for calculation sake [actually it would be more]. It means 4.9kgsx3000menx6mthsx30days per month = 2646000 kgs.

[ii] A porter can carry 15 kgs in HAA. Therefore it would require 2646000 divided by 15kgs = 176400 porters.

[iii] As per you it took 6 months, so 176400 divided by [6mths x 30 days] = 980 porters per month JUST TO CARRY - RATIONS.

[iv] Now add the weight of Pepsi, malta and Satellite Dishes {I don’t know the weight}.

So, how many porters have we milling around? If Animal Transport was used a military mule carries 30 kgs and local donkey 20 kgs in High Altitude Area. However, if they were used, their footprints would be a dead giveaway.

Now calculate the weapons and ammunition. I too hate calculating and wasting my time which to me is quite precious. I leave it to your judgement how much weapons including mortars would weigh and how much would just one first line of ammunition [which means OK for just ONE attack] weigh.

You also said that there was a surfeit of rations that Pakistanis left when they fled. So, the rations that they had humped were more than six months plus [they stayed till June and a wee bit in July? So calculate six months plus weight!

3. You quote Sawant thus:

‘"Gentlemen, tonight you will embark on a mission of which I have no knowledge if am asked. I am sending you but, God forbid, if something happens to you, I'll not have enough powers to retrieve you. You are going as a voluntary force and because of your love for the motherland. But if asked, I shall say you are the figment of somebody's imagination," the senior Batalik Brigade officer told a special section of the elite Para Commandos.’

It is real melodramatic. So the ‘senior officer’ namely someone from Brig Devinder Singh’s outfit said the SF was a figment of imagination? It’s great for a novel but not so in actualities. NO army officer of worth his salt would say such junk. It is most demoralising. At that moment of time, morale was a great requirement. I know Devinder, who himself is a paratrooper arty officer, he would have told that ‘senior officer’ to just take off into the blues. The ‘when and how of the operation did not come out’ because it was possibly a journalist dramatics of exaggerating a normal event.

4. What you show as ‘igloos’, I have mentioned in my earlier post. They are FRPs, which they used.

5. You quote:

‘The occupation of intrusions areas by Pakistan Army soldiers, supported by the Special Service Group (SSG) personnel, Chitral and Bajaur Scouts was undertaken during April - May 1999.

To speed up the operations, Helicopters, Snow Mobiles and Animal Transport were extensively employed. To enable optimum utilisation of helicopters, forward helipads were constructed by the Pakistan Army very close to the Line of Control in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK).’

I am impressed that the IAF know more and did nothing about it! I could not get the page as it stated URL Not found. I also read somewhere in the BRF that the Pak troops objected to be used a porters! Rather contradictory and paradoxical!

6. As far as cargo shells are concerned, I don’t give much credence to dramatic stories of journalists. Indian journalists have gone to Iraq. They will return as greater experts than Gen Franks and may even teach him a few things about the war! Its like me teaching Vajpayee how to run a country!

During the Kargil Ops did you not see TV journalists asking jawans about the strategy of the operations?

Lastly, I am not here to force my views down any gullet or upset anyone. To the best of my knowledge I refrain for using rude words. I am here to share my knowledge {I learn a lot of others I assure you]. Please take what I write for what it is worth. My aim is to dispel [if I can] that Pakistanis are no great shakes and building them up as some supermen [to assuage our patriotism that we chucked such folks out] would only fore us into complacency.

I say Be Prepared or Perish. Sift the wheat from the chaff. Learn the lessons and not hoodwink yourself. Then and then alone will you be prepared to take them on again and this time teach a resounding lessons.

One could say many things but then it is best not said. Apart from other facts, all this going gaga about SF and Cdos is OK, but then………

I sure wish Mohinder Puri write his memoirs honestly……well, as honestly as he can ;)

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Jagan » 02 Jul 2003 13:14

Gaurav Sawants book is good, (i find it better than the rest) but I always wonder how much of it is melodrama/exaggeration/writers licence?

Off the topic, Sawant hasnot exactly endeared himself with the Armed Forces. I believe when he went to give a talk (on what?) at the college of Air Warfare, he was laughed out of the stage by all the other officers present. He apparently tried to be rude and was paid back in the same coin.

Nowadays I think hes become a News anchor at Star News. after NDTV broke away from them

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Pranay » 04 Aug 2003 23:12

I have read Sawant's book... and am sorry to say that he is long on self promotion and being pompous rather then being true to the facts on the ground. I have yet to read the book A Ridge too Far. But I'm sure that it does full justice to the subject, coming from an ex army man himself.

Most Indian journalists are utterly clueless about things military and it's appalling to read their portrayal of things military, the Kargil conflict being no exception.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 08 Aug 2003 23:54

Gaurav Sawants book is pretty ameturish compared to Amarinder Singhs from the military standpoint.

However it does have a human angle. Visible in a clutter of poetic licence and melodrama.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby member_5072 » 09 Aug 2003 06:38

www.Vijayinkargil.org has now become a ***** site.... :mad:

Div
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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Div » 09 Aug 2003 06:57

Originally posted by aditya_k:
www.Vijayinkargil.org has now become a ***** site.... :mad:
They've had a few days (if not a week) to fix this...wtf are they waiting for? Doesn't look like a redirect, more so a hijack.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Jagan » 09 Aug 2003 07:22

The domain lapsed and was a ***** site two years back. So why did Rediff wake up now? :D

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Bishwa » 09 Aug 2003 21:42

While we might agree that Gaurav Sawants book might be mixing facts and fiction, Amarinder Singhs book also has got a few facts mixed up. Examples

1. 1/11 GR having done 4 tours of siachen duty.
2. Capt Karnal Sher Khan being the only winner of Nishan-e-Haider for the Kargil ops.
3. Nk Digendra Singh (MVC) photo being marked posthumus. Heads rolled in the army for similar mistakes.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Div » 10 Aug 2003 00:08

Originally posted by Jagan:
The domain lapsed and was a ***** site [b]two years back. So why did Rediff wake up now? :D [/b]
That makes sense because the last change to their domain registration information was in 2002.

Guest

Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Guest » 10 Aug 2003 00:14

Originally posted by bishwa:
..............Gaurav Sawants book..............
Unrelated question: Is this Gaurav Sawant BR's GauravS ? :confused:

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby rrikhye » 11 Aug 2003 19:06

This is a discussion that is the true BR standard: lots of facts, little invective, few personal attacks, a genuine attempt to get at the truth.

Re. Major Amin: his typist puts in a gazillion exclaimation marks and I dont know why.

He really is very well informed. Pakistan army does not talk much on record [articles, papers, etc], but between themselves and their friends - civilian or foreign - they are just as frank as we are. The establishment is much smaller, everyone really does know everyone, kind of like Indian Army in the 1950s before the expansions, and the good Major does get around.

Seperating fact from opinion: you are right, I think its a weakness us S Asians have, but in all honesty, so does the Washington Post, which puts major editorial opinion disguised as news stories on its front pages. So dont hold that against Major Amin!

I dont know if you all have seen his recent articles blasting the corruption culture of the Pakistan Army. I'll email one article he sent me if anyone wants it. I can assure you no Indian could be as frank as he has been.

As far as I'm personally concerned, its his articles and discussions on India in the 19th Century, particularly on the Mutiny, and on how the split between Hindus and Muslims came about, that are the real eyeopeners. Wont be news to many, but as a western educated person, some of the things Amin says completely disrupted my frame of reference about one's own past. If anyone had any sense they'd give Major Amin a research job at JNU: he's a great researcher and if you want revisionism, or at least want toyour history free of the British lens, he's your guy.
There's a whole bunch of his historical stuff on Pakistan Defense Journal.

[A very simple example: I didnt know till I read Amin that there are Muslim Rajputs, and are very proud to this day to say so. Okay, so I know some of you are saying "gosh Ravi is so ignorant", but come on, lets be honest: how many of us knew that?]

Best to you all - keep up the great work.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby debjani » 12 Aug 2003 06:15

Originally posted by rrikhye:

[A very simple example: I didnt know till I read Amin that there are Muslim Rajputs, and are very proud to this day to say so. Okay, so I know some of you are saying "gosh Ravi is so ignorant", but come on, lets be honest: how many of us knew that?]

Best to you all - keep up the great work.
Could you e mail the stuff at sabu_ray@yahoo.co.uk? I would be grateful.

Yes, one is aware that there are Muslim Rajputs. - Kyam Khanis. In fact, I think India Today also brought out an article on them as also about the Gujrati Muslims having Hindu names and rituals.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby ramana » 12 Aug 2003 20:21

Ravi, Please e-mail the 1857 history stuff to me too - ramana_56 at yahoo.com

I have some views on the period between Aurangazeb to Plassey.

Yes there are Muslim Rajputs and all other types for they all were Hindu once. There is a good book about all this by Desikachar. Will get you the right title.

I for one think the story of Kargil is not yet out. There are many unexplained facets and sudden bravado which is out of context. The short story is POKII - collapse of NDA govt- Kargil - US about turn(Reidel's paper) -911 all these are related. Dont know how but have to dig out the details. All the websites put out the 'facts' as they see it but ignore the possible interconnections lest they find out something unpleasant.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby putnanja » 14 Aug 2003 00:40

A slightly tangential topic, but I feel it belongs here :)

From Asian age, posting in full...

Bollywood, for one, won’t forget Kargil war
- By Bhaarati K. Dubey

Mumbai, Aug. 13: Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf in his speech on Tuesday told India to forget the Kargil war. But Bollywood has different ideas. Indian films will continue to remind audiences of the bravery of Indian soldiers who laid down their lives in Kargil.

There are at least four films being made either on terrorism or the Kargil war. Filmmaker J.P. Dutta ends his trilogy on war films with LoC, which is based on Kargil’s heroes. "The story of the soldiers’ bravery needs to be related to the world," Dutta said.

In her film Dhoop, filmmaker Ashwini Dheer talks of the struggle of Mr S.K. Nayyar, father of Captain Anuj Nayyar, killed in the Kargil war. Mr Nayyar was promised a petrol pump by the government but had to run from pillar to post before he was allotted the pump in Gurgaon.

Farhan Akhtar is now making Lakshya, a love story against a Kargil backdrop. Filmmaker Ashok Pandit is almost ready with Sheen, another love story set against the backdrop of terrorism in Kashmir. Pandit is terribly upset with Gen. Musharraf’s statement. "He has spoken through his hat; if thinks we can forget Kargil, then he should forget Kashmir altogether," he said.

Pandit, however, is convinced that filmmakers are cashing in on Kargil. "Every war involves the loss of soldiers; one should not cash in on issues like Kargil. People died on either side of the border. Kargil received so much hype because of the media," he added.

There are people in the industry, like Akshay Kumar, who don’t want to mouth anti-Pak dialogues in their films. Akshay Kumar has returned to Anil Sharma’s film Ab Tumhare Hawalien Watan Saathiyon solely on that condition. :mad:

Sharma is one filmmaker who has made a career of Pakistan-bashing in his films. His last two films, Gadar and The Hero — Love Story of A Spy, generated curiosity and made money at the box office. Asked to comment, Sharma said, "We have always been ready to forgive and forget. Be it the 1965 war or the 1971 war, we have made an honest attempt to forget things and are ready to be friends again. And then Kargil creeps up from behind. Now what do we do? We love Pakistanis and we know they love us. In fact they appreciate our films so much. We will still be ready to forget, but it is up to them to stop coming up with something like Kargil. I still believe that if we bury the hatchet and decide to unite, we can be the biggest force in the world. We eat the same food, and wear the same kind of clothes. It is just the boundary that has separated us."

Filmmaker Guarang Doshi, who is making a film on prisoners of war called Deewar, wasn’t aware of what Gen. Musharraf had said. Doshi said, "Films are a source of entertainment and whenever a film is being made on issues like this, there is always a note at the start that the film stating it is fictional. As far as films and the film industry is concerned, we make films as a mode of entertainment and we work as professionals to earn money and entertain people. Why should we forget the Kargil war when it actually happened? Whatever films are being made are based on this very fact. Deewar is about prisoners of war; however, it’s a different kind of subject with no war involved."

Filmwriter Shaktimaan, who has been associated with Gadar and Hero, says, "Kargil is history and one cannot forget history. People will continue to be reminded of it. But I am sure most filmmakers don’t focus on Pakistan-bashing; it is more about the heroism of our soldiers."

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby arun » 16 Aug 2003 07:00

More on Pakistan's casualities during the Kargil crisis.

This from Abdul Hamid Khan, Chairman Balawaristan National Front.



Our youth (Northern Light Infantry) were sent to Kargil as mercenaries by Pakistan as a result more than 900 NLI youth were lost their lives, 1000 wounded and became disable and 40 missing. The most barbaric role of both Pakistan and Indian Army was that, Indian Army caught more than 50 NLI soldiers at different places of Kargil in 1999 war and asked, if Pakistan Army accepts NLI soldiers, they will be treated prisoners of war per Geneva convention. But Indian Army shot them on the spot when Pakistan Army denied accepting them. Indian Army buried 300 dead bodies of NLI soldiers on Kargil heights, when Pakistan refused to accept their bodies by accepting 2 bodies of its own nationals.

The URL.

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Denis » 16 Aug 2003 13:11

Many of us wanted to know the casualty rate of Pak Army in the conflict. According to Nawaz Sharif [color=blue]More than 4000 Paki troops and officials were killed</font>. This is in the latest breaking news now at Expressindia website

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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby ramana » 22 Aug 2003 22:34

amarko
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Member # 3741

posted 22 August 2003 10:37 AM

I stumbled upon this article which offers some insights on the Kargin misadventure. Couldn't find
the Kargil thread, so posting it here:

http://www.mediamonitors.net/ahamin3.html

Has this article been discussed before ?
----------------------------------------
Musharraf's Secret War in Kargil



by A. H. Amin

Kargil stands as perhaps the final military effort on Pakistan's part to settle the Kashmir
dispute by military means.

Analysis has mostly centered around political aspects of the operation while the military
aspects have been largely left to the imagination of the public. Lately it has been
claimed that Kargil was launched to bail out Mujahideen as a last resort ! This is an
insult to the memory of the Pakistani armed forces "Volunteers" who died in that
Himalayan wasteland without a funeral and in circumstances of unimaginable misery !

Kargil operation cannot be understood unless the personalities and motives of the
principal characters are examined ! Every action in history is the final culmination of a
personality's self perception, ambition and subconscious as well as conscious urges.

In this context the Kargil operation was born out of two key factors ! One was the
personality of general Pervez Musharraf and the second was the un-ceremonial manner
in which Nawaz Sharif ousted General Jahangir Karamat Musharraf's predecessor army
chief of Pakistan Army.

Musharraf as those who have served with him know which includes this scribe also has
always been an intensely ambitious man ! One hallmark of his personality is that he
wants to stand out as a great military commander ! Propelled by an enormou s ego
wherever he served he endeavored to do something extraordinary ! However fate did not
allow him the glory in battle which his other course-mates like shabbir sharif achieved ! In
1965 Musharraf was a subaltern in an artillery unit which saw little action apart from
supporting operations by indirect fire ! The 16 SP unlike 3 SP which fired on Indian tanks
with direct gun-sights at Chawinda stayed in conventional artillery role ! In 1971
Musharraf's commando company was not involved in action ! Nevertheless Musharraf
compensated for this lack of combat laurels by achieving laurels in army courses and in
various command assignments ! His final opportunity came when he ascended to the
post of army chief in a situation when the army was! in a subservient position vis-à-vis the
civilian head of state , something which was regarded by the military hierarchy as worse
than blasphemy !

The forced retirement of General Karamat by prime minister Nawaz Sharif was regarded
as a personal defeat by the Pakistani military brass and by Musharraf who felt that he
would be a far weaker army chief under a strong prime minister who had asserted civilian
control over the military machine !

These two factors were the fathers of the Kargil operation ! Ambition accompanied by a
perception that the Pakistani public must be convinced that the soldiers were better than
politicians.

Kargil at the military level was the brainchild of three men i.e. General Musharraf the
army chief, Aziz the then army Chief of general Staff and Mahmud the then corps
commander 10 Corps ! Musharraf and Mahmud were motivated by intense ambition to
achieve military glory and Aziz was motivated by his Kashmiri ancestry plus military
ambition. The person they selected to execute the operation was again one
distinguished by out of proportion ambition i.e. Major General Javed Hassan , author of
a book in 1990s that claimed that India was on its way to disintegration and in which
moughal king Humayun was resurrected from the grave to fight at Second Battle of
Panipat !

In November December 1998 just one month after Musharraf's elevation to the post of
army chief volunteers were asked for at the army level for an operation in Kashmir ! Many
thousand volunteered including both officers and men from various units !

At no stage did any Mujahideen enter Kargil ! This is a piece of fiction and has no
veracity !

These were attached to NLI units in the 80 Brigade sector for training. The principal idea
of the plan was to infiltrate four battalions of NLI (Northern light Infantry) stationed in 80
Brigade Sector into Kargil Heights overlooking and dominating the Srinagar Ladakh road
the lone Indian link with the Siachen and Leh Sectors ! The idea being to cut the lifeline
of Indian supplies to Leh and Siachen Sectors ! Indian held heights in Kargil were to be
occupied in February 1999 while Indian infantry had abandoned these heights at the
approach of winter snow as an annual routine since 1948.In occupying the heights no
fighting was involved ! The real issue was that of supplying Pakistani troops holding
these heights which was far more difficult from the Pakistani side than from the Indian
side !

Plans were kept secret and even the Commander 10 Corps Engineers of was not allowed
to enter the Operations Room in 10 Corps Pindi.

The distance involved in reaching the heights varied from 15 to 35 kilometers from
Pakistan side over mountains as high as 13 to 19,000 feet .To do this each battalion was
divided into two parts , one acting as porters taking supplies forward and one half
occupying the heights.

The heights were occupied as per the plan but the four units while doing so were
severely exhausted ! In March-April the Indians discovered the Pakistani presence and
reacted severely ! Severe fighting continued till July once the Indians finally re-captured
the heights after Pakistani troops had been left to the mercy of Indian artillery and
overwhelming troop concentrations as a result of the Blair House Accord !

A brief military examination of the plan reveals following weaknesses.(1) Failure to assess
strategic repercussions of the operation at geo-politic and national strategic level .(2)
Logistic failure in incorrect appreciation of supplying the troops . (3) Failure to
understand that by occupying the heights the Indians were driven into a corner and had
no choice but to retaliate , not for glory as was the Pakistani military's case but for pure
military survival . (4) At a more subtle level the use of the Chora-Batalik Sector as a
future spring board for Pakistani operations against India was sealed since Indians
heavily fortified this sector for any future war.

The Pakistani planners failed to assess that war as an instrument of policy is no longer in
vogue at the international level and their temporary military success would only bring
greater international censure and a negative war mongering image without any
corresponding military gain at the strategic level.

This scribe interviewed a former commander of FCNA and 10 Corps about logistics and
General Imtiaz Warraich replied as following :-

"We initiated this operation but failed to support it with comprehensive operational
planning and above all buildup for essential logistic support without which no operation
can succeed"......'" the principal reason for our heavy casualties and lack of progress was
unimaginative and callous logistic operations to support the units".

At one point the sepoys who had volunteered to fight and had come from many other
infantry units to the NLI units refused to act as porters carrying supplies over 15 kilometres
and were so exasperated that they defied Javed Hassan's personal orders in unit durbars
to carry supplies and when Javed Hassn threw his cap on the ground threatened to march
over it unless they were not employed as porters ! One such volunteer told this scribe that
we had volunteered to fight ,not to act as porters ! The same fact was also mentioned in
ISI chief Ziauddin Butt's secret report to Nawaz Sharif prepared by an Engineer officer on
Zia's staff in ISI !

The failure to assess the "Enemy" factor was another strategic planning failure at the
highest level .I asked General Warraich this question and he stated " Capture of Kargil
Heights would totally stop all Indian movement to Leh and Ladakh Sectors unlike
Pakistan in Siachen and Indians had no option but to do and die " !

Lust for glory and honour in battle are perfectly reasonable aspirations as long as they
are accompanied by commensurate military talent in the generals who are at the helm
of affairs ! This was sadly lacking in the Musharraf team who planned the operation.
Their egos were many times larger than their real military talent !

By promoting an intensely ambitious man to the rank of army chief Nawaz did a favor
which could only be repaid by betrayal ! The plan was based not on sound military
reasoning but on burning ambition and an unrealistic desire for glory by men far away
from the heat of battle ! No one above major level died , yet in a report to the military
secretary's branch Javed Hassan recommended retiring 75 % of officers involved in the
operation below colonel level !

The prime minister was not fully briefed because of ulterior motives ! Had the operation
succeeded it would have been projected as a proof of Musharraf's Napoleonic brilliance
and if it failed as it did Nawaz Sharif would have been made the scapegoat !

The operations planners were distinguished neither by loftiness of thought, nor audacity
in the conduct of battle at the operational or strategic level. Thus boldness at tactical
level was sacrificed because of operational and tactical timidity at the highest level.

No one appreciated that the army men who were employed , and it is a fiction that there
was a single Mujahid in Kargil, had flesh and blood ! These men mourned by a few
hundred families were sons husbands fathers and brothers !

The Kargil operation at the military level is a watershed ! Idealism that propelled many
hundred to die in those Himalayan wastes is buried for good ! Now there is a new breed
which dominates the army ! The ones who aim at going on lush UN second-ments or to
KESC, WAPDA or as well paid consultants !

What can one conclude ! It was the human heart that failed in Kargil and this heart
which failed was housed in the ribcage of men sitting in the GHQ and not on the rocky
pinnacles of Kargil ! Once the supply lines were closed under Indian threat of a counter
attack , these brave men all Pakistan Army regulars were abandoned to die, pounded by
artillery fire , bayoneted by overwhelming numbers , weakened by starvation ! Who can
hear their cries ! Our ears are covered with heaps of lies ! Truth died at Kargil ! What
remains is a bodyguard of lies!

A. H Amin is a writer , journalist , ex editor of Defence Journal (Pakistan), ex
Editor of Globe (Pakistan); author of Indo Pak Wars from 1947 to 1971, Man's
Role in History and Land of the Pure (short stories). He contributed above article
to Media Monitors Network (MMN) from Sindh, Pakistan.

Source:

by courtesy & © 2003 A. H. Amin

by the same author:

Life of a Soviet Spy
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Rangudu
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Re: Kargil Revisited

Postby Rangudu » 23 Aug 2003 21:41

I managed to get a hold of Paki Herald Magazine, July 2000 issue which had a feature on Kargil.

It says that most of the 6 NLI and then entire 12 NLI were wiped out pretty quickly. It also says that, towards the end, TSPA got "some troops from Punjab" who were also wiped out mainly due to lack of acclimitization.

BTW, this syncs up with the Ayesha Siddiqa article where she says Pakis had to get troops from Siachen to compensate for the heavy attrition.


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