Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

daulat
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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby daulat » 08 Mar 2004 21:06

Originally posted by sunil s:
I can't begin to imagine what the guy at DGK will be thinking.[/QB]
"Where's my comms link? what happened to my stores? why are all my convoys getting hit? how do they know where my assets are? what's that whistling noise coming towards..." {crackle, hiss, crackle... silence}

kgoan
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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby kgoan » 08 Mar 2004 22:05

Any idea of what a Battle Group will actually consist of? The composition and size will impact on the speed and reaction rate of it's manueverability.

A 100 plus guns seems to imply that the entire group, with all the other elements added, could well be division size, (Strike Divisions instead of Strike Corps?), and how will the logistics play out there? Will the Battle Group have a greater call on resources than a holding Corps?

And how do the Navy and IAF fit in? Especially the Navy. With the IN being an integral part, the term "battle group" seems to echo the US/Brit term "Expedtionary Forces".

If it involves pulling out disparate elements from other elements and putting them together, how well will the C4I systems work?

The US uses the term "swarm warfare", (one of their infinite jargon terms) to describe various elements in geographically disparate regions comming swiftly together to concentrate massive firepower on a given target.

Is that what's being talked about here? Doesn't seem to be the same since the term "battle groups" seem to imply some sort of permanent organisational structure, not just ad-hoc operational techniques in a fire fight.

Interesting stuff to speculate on.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby NRao » 08 Mar 2004 22:14

Seems to have more mobility, but not enough to fit most, if not all, of the US/UK concepts. For that IA+IAF+IN need near real-time communications, which they do not have currently, nor (IMHO) for a few years to come. But they seem to getting there without saying so.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Rudra » 08 Mar 2004 22:37

are you aware that IA is in middle of a big effort
to have video & data links down to very low command levels ?

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Vick » 08 Mar 2004 22:40

why video?

Y I Patel
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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Y I Patel » 08 Mar 2004 23:13

Notes and disclaimers:

What follows is a result of my overactive imagination, and is not based on anything but readily available information. Details of Indian formations, in particular, are drawn largely from an analysis of Op Parakram by a retired Pakistani general. All other details have no basis in reality, and are just my attempt to have some fun.

The serious part of this post is the timeline, which I wish to emphasise. If response is good, we can flesh this out for a BRM article.

At the Drop of a Grenade: A Fictional Account of the Indian Military’s New “Cold Start” Doctrine

(All times IST; IST-5:30=GMT, IST-10:30=EST)

December 13, 2005; 11:29 AM IST (T Hour), Parliament House, New Delhi
(approximately 5:00 AM GMT; 00 AM EST)

LET terrorists mount an RPG attack on Indian parliament complex and mange to destroy the outer ring before being killed by the NSG commandos in the second ring of defenses. Cars with two members of parliament trying to enter the parliament complex get destroyed in the initial grenade attack.

T+0:15

The Indian PM, Lal Kishen Bihari, is informed of the attack in his Race Course Road office. He gets on a secure conference call with his defense minister George Abraham, and his CDS, General Shantonu Oberoi. The PM gives his clearance to the pre-planned Operation Durvasa, and after that, proceeds to inform the Indian President and other members of CCS.

Gen Oberoi then proceeds to set Operation Durvasa in motion by raising his colleagues in the three services.

T+0:30

The Pakistani President, General Abdul Khan, is informed of the terrorist attack on the Indian Parliament. He requests a meeting with the American Ambassador, Christina Applegate, at T+1:30 and decides to hold a press conference condemning the attack at T+2:15. Pakistani armed forces continue to be at peace stations, to continue the illusion that Pakistan was not aware of or involved in the terrorist attack.

CIA sources report the terrorist attack to the night operations officer in CIA headquarters, and military officers in the operations command are also informed. Going by previous experience, the operations officer decides to put the item at the top of the National Intelligence Estimate to be submitted to President George Kerry, next morning.

T+0:35

A flight of four Su-30 MKIs of the IAF 20 Squadron take off from the Chandimandir Air Base near Chandigarh. These are followed by M2K flights from 1 Squadron out of Gwalior, other Su 30 MKI flights out of Jamnagar for AD, IL-78 refuellers out of Nagpur. The IAF AD network lights up like a Christmas tree, and emissions are picked up and noted by PAF C3 centers.

T+0:40
PAF ACM in Chaklala is informed, and orders PAF AD units to go on alert.

T+0:45

The first bombs land on HQ and other command formations of PA 33 Corps, Sialkot. Before PAF interceptors can be scrambled, the attacking Su 30 MKIs are on the landing approach at their recovery base at Halwara. The scrambled PAF interceptors are greeted by the follow-on wave of M2Ks and their BVR missiles.

T+0:47

Gen Abdul Khan is informed of the attacks. He responds by ordering all Pak military forces to go on alert, and by postponing his meeting with US Ambassador and his press conference till the immediate situation clears.

T+1 hour

USUK and Chinese satellites, Pak and assorted intel agents are discovering all manner of hell breaking loose:

(1) From Taj Intercontinental near Gateway of India, John Smith and Rashid Mirza report to their respective bosses that a beehive has broken open at the Naval base. INS Mysore and INS Talwar are swarming with worker bees, look like they are getting ready to depart at short notice.

(2) Reports from Ambala, Bhatinda, and Bikaner indicate army formations, especially arty, engr and armd units, loading up into transporters and rail wagons.

(3)Intel agents posted near major IAF air bases report frequent, and noisy take offs by combat air craft loaded for bear.

T+1:30

US CENTCOM, PACOM HQ offices, CIA and NSA offices, and State Department HQs are getting flooded with reports of unexpected Indian military activity. However, the scale and suddenness of action prevent a clear picture from emerging. NSA is woken up and goes into a huddle to make sense of the developments.

Gen Khan is getting a similar deluge of information, and figures that a press conference is not going to cut it anymore. He issues orders for PAF to mount limited retaliatory attacks on IAF bases, and orders his strategic forces to go on alert. The American Ambassador is informed that the US supplied PALs will be under direct PA control, and that US advisors helping PA monitor PA strategic weapons will be asked to leave for reasons of operational security.

Meanwhile, the second wave of IAF attacks has just gone in over selected operational and logistics targets in the Lahore-Sialkot area.

The hastily mounted PAF retaliatory attack has been greeted by Su 30 MKs from Pune and MKIs from Chandigarh flying AD patrols.

T+2:00

Div arty brigades from IA 15 Corps to IA 12 Corps open up with the coordinated first salvo. PA units, still trying to recover from peacetime stations, are caught unawares. Several munitions dumps and bunkers are destroyed. PA starts retaliatory fire.

Gen Khan decides to put the entire Pak military on war alert, and orders ARN, ARC, and ARS units to start deploying. Since they were at peace stations till a couple of hours ago, they will require at least two days to have key personnel report back from duty, and for getting the forces assembled. The surprise IAF attacks on logistics nodes are not helping matters.

PAF CAS, in response to PAF losses, decides to put PAF on strategic defense. This implies defense of high priority targets; PA and PN will henceforth be left to defend for themselves.

T+2:30

Ms Shruti Prakash, spokesperson, GOI, goes on air to inform the world that a “limited punitive operation” has been launched by units of IAF and IA against terrorist bases in Pakistan. Stress is laid on the limited and retaliatory scope of the operations, and the Gen Khan is invited to bilateral talks to diffuse the situation. Meanwhile, the attacks go on.

T+3:00

The situation on LOC and IB continues to be confusing, with repeated coordinated arty salvos wrecking havoc on PA line defenses. There are now reports of MLRS strikes as well, particularly in the Sialkot area.

The nature of IAF strikes and IA arty attacks seems to indicate that the Sialkot - Gujranwala area seems to be bearing the brunt of the fire assaults. Border deployed units are reporting heavy losses due to the unexpected and sudden attacks, and reinforcements from 33 Corps formations report difficulties in concentrating and mobilizing due to repeated IAF and long range MLRS attacks.

Gen Khan decides enough is enough, and wants a PTV address from his secure bunker to declare war on India. The PTV address is scheduled for T+4, and ambassadors from various countries are contacted to inform them. Ambassadors scramble to get in touch with their countries to formulate a response.

NSA decides that President George Kerry may have to be woken up to speak with PM Bihari and Gen Khan.

T+4:00

Elements of Corps arty, and more ominously, elements from 40 Arty Div have now been thrown into the fire assaults. Some PA border units have now been under attack for two continuous hours, and are beginning to report serious losses.

An IN battle group led by INS Mysore sets sail in broad daylight from Mumbai docks. The event is duly reported from Spy Central on the Gatway, a.k.a. Taj Intercontinental.

Spy satellites don’t know where to look, since hectic activity is on at several IA, IAF, and IN bases. As a mark of concern, satellites over China are diverted to keep track. However, intel agencies are beginning to get disoriented by the rapid mobilization of several key IA formations from 15, 16, 11, 12, 10, 2, and 1 corps. The indep armd brigades are especially hard to pin down.

Elements of IA 2 Indep Armd Brigade (2 IAB) begin concentration in the Akhnur – Chaamb area, and ominous stirrings are also noted in the newly formed 10 RAPIDS division based out of Pathankot.

A sleepy George Kerry is informed of the rash and impulsive Indian attacks, and he demands more information on Indian intentions before approaching the Indian PM with a call for restraint. US national security staff goes into a huddle, and South Asian experts are summoned to make sense of the unexpected situation.

T+5:00

Air and arty attacks in the Sialkot-Gujranwala area reach a crescendo, with coordinated attacks by IAF, div and corps arty units from 16 corps, and newly deployed units of 40 Arty Division. Engr elements attached to 16 Corps and 2 IAD start demolishing bunds and fences on the Indian side of IB.

Electricity in the entire Pakistani province of Punjab goes out due to IAF attacks on power stations.

Gen Khan goes on air and assures the world that the irresponsible Indian aggressors are being given a sound thrashing, and threatens dire consequences unless Indians cease all attacks forthwith.

Ms Prakash responds within 15 minutes of the broadcast by pointing out that Indian acts could not be termed as an aggression since no Indian units were present on Pakistani soil; furthermore, that the attacks were directed against newly relocated terrorist cells operating out of Pakistani Punjab.

T+6:00 (5:30 PM IST; 12 PM GMT; 7 AM EST)

Key differences are beginning to emerge within the US administration, regarding response to the unexpected developments in South Asia. State Department officials want to issue stern warnings to India to act like a responsible nuclear power, while Defense officials are getting increasingly worried about the loss of PALs to elements in PA sympathetic to terrorists. The paralysis of analysis delays a US response to the rapidly evolving situation. Meanwhile, Gen Khan continues to bluster to Ambassador Applegate. Retired Pak Generals now swing into the fray and start talking about a Zarb-E-Momin type of reposte to the slow moving Indians.

The first posts on the crisis appear on BRF.

T+7:00

After 5 hours of continuous bombardment, elements of IA 2 IAB commence breaching operations against the first line of PA defenses.

The US president tries to call the Indian PM, who can not be contacted as he has relocated to a secure area. Indian NSA Arun Chandra assures his US counterpart that India’s actions are limited and punitive, and that no dismemberment or decapitation of Pakistan is intended.

US is not satisfied with the reassurances, and acts with unprecedented speed to get a UN Security Council meeting scheduled at 12:00 PM EST, a mere 11 hours after the drop of the grenade in New Delhi.

T+8:00

Units of 2 IAB break through the first line of defenses, and are racing towards the second line. They are now being reinforced by elements from 10 RAPIDS. PA is also reporting difficulties in tactical responses due to presence of IA SF units that seem to have started operating behind Pak lines of defense.

T+11:00

President George Kerry and Prime Minister Margaret Blair of UK issue a statement condemning the terrorist attack on the Indian parliament, and call for restraint from all sides. The Security Council commences deliberations on the unexpected developments in South Asia.

Meanwhile, after seven hours of hammering, Pakistani defenses in the Gujranwala area are in tatters. There are reports of Indian units using sheer speed to break through the second line of defenses.

T+13:00

After a mere two hours of discussion, the UN Security Council issues a call for a ceasefire, and threatens military action if Indian attacks continue.

T+13:30

The Indian PM L.K. Bihari finally goes on air and declares willingness to conform to UNSC calls for a ceasefire. He stresses that the limited Indian attacks were in response to terrorist acts perpetrated by Pakistan, and calls for bilateral discussions on all problems facing India and Pakistan. He also indicates that India will discuss the Kashmir issue in conjunction with other outstanding India-Pakistan issues, and asks Gen Khan to reciprocate.

Meanwhile, PAF has been shredded, PA 33 corps units are in tatters, and IA units are digging themselves in 6 km inside Pakistani territory. The term Akhnur Dagger has acquired a whole new meaning.

There have been severe and unfortunate civilian losses in Pakistani Punjab, and the Indian CDS is moved to admit that war is hell.

Posters in BRF are going ape $hit at India’s week knees in not finishing Pakistan off, and BR Admins have to threaten several postors will loss of privileges if they do not cease and desist.

Babui
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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Babui » 08 Mar 2004 23:21

YIP - allus a pleasure to read your analysis. The only quibble I have is that the first BRF post is at T+6 :-) More likely, Shiv will be on the job at T+0.02 :-):-)

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby b_ravi » 08 Mar 2004 23:23

Originally posted by Daulat:
so piecing things together, it would seem then that there is a shortage in the IA of a modern armed helicopter that can do the robust fighting recce as well as kick the crap out of al khalids and friends on demand. as RayC said, where are the Apaches? I am not sure that Dhruv and derivatives are in the same mould for the job? what happened to stories of the new Yak chopper for the IA/IAF?
For that there is the LCH Gunship which would be carrying the NAG for anti-tank. Our current Gunships are also going to be armed with the Nag to support the LCH.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Ashutosh » 09 Mar 2004 00:51

YIP; the timelines you mention are definitely a problem. It takes much longer for fighters and transports from bases like Pune, Nagpur to reach Sialkot, etc. It would also "presumably" take much longer for the land formations to reach the IB. Same goes for the destroyers and frigates. Otherwise, it is an interesting read.
Originally posted by Y I Patel:
T+6:00 (5:30 PM IST; 12 PM GMT; 7 AM EST)

...

The first posts on the crisis appear on BRF.
:D

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Vick » 09 Mar 2004 00:54

I liked Ambd. Christina Applegate myself :) "Honk honk said the gose"

I am not sure about the reaction of the UN being what YIP presumes. China could always dilly dally with the resolution so as to give Pakistan time to have its ARN and ARS reasonbly mobilized for its riposte. What then?

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Rudra » 09 Mar 2004 01:06

you forgot the strapping pathan colonel (educated at harrow) whos having a very torrid affair with the beautiful but worldly wise 35 yr old Ms.Applegate (florida born, with looks to match her trim 5'4" gym-toned body).

Col.Orakzai is the Pak HQ's mole inside the US embassy. he keeps tipping of the Pak president
about confusion in D.C.....

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Y I Patel » 09 Mar 2004 01:49

I wrote this up in the form of a story because I did not want to get into the drudgery of a serious article with hazaar references, but I do hope that the serious and very real underpinnings of the article don't get lost... it is a lot easier to cover a lot more ground and concepts in a story, than it is in an article. A lot of deliberate thought went into the choice of the formations, locations, even some names were chosen with deliberate intent.

So allow me to point out some points I would like to see addressed, in terms of this fictional Operation Durvasa (why Durvasa?)

(1) The need to get in a meaningful punch before international pressure kicks in is a constant underlying imperative in reshaping India's conventional warfighting doctrine. The remaking of India's warfighting doctrine has had to labor under a very demanding criterion: how can we make Paki nukes irrelevant? Several people have tried to address this; for example, we all know of Gen Malik's remarks on the winnability of a limited war.

(2) The central issue is that locational suprise will be difficult to obtain in a situation like India-Pak where opportune and strategic terrain has been so well studied for so long. Hence, the only advantage that remains is of speed and overwhelming power.

(3) The scenario I paint depends neither on mythical weapons nor on super-smart planning. It is based on realistic formations, and uses very conservative timelines. For example, Ex Vijay Chakra employed an IAB, a RAPIDS division, and a company of paras. See any parallels here? If anything, the timeline errs on the side of conservatism. If, for example, China tries to dither and get Pak more time, it only gives IA formations more time to either dig in or exploit further. I hope the irony of IA turning the doctrine of Zarb-E-Momin on its makers is not lost to gentle readers.

(4) Finally, the scenario tries to put a realistic face to the concepts outlined in the series of articles posted on this very thread. Note how I employ concepts of a pivot corps/battle group, massed artillery, sequential induction of forces without preliminary buildup, integrated employment of air power, coercive and diversionary movements by land and naval units, media management and so on into the scenario.

So I hope you had fun with the names, but please reread the story with these and other considerations in mind. I think you will find even more to entertain you if you do so!

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Ashutosh » 09 Mar 2004 02:06

YIP, agreed; but I have tried to say in a single sentence what I really mean - that a realworld "Divya Astra" or a "Durvasa" is currently feasible only after a mobilization is complete. At least of those units involved. Otherwise, we are not there yet.

Secondly there is a technical side of equipment that needs to be taken into account ... for an IL-78 to get to Punjab from Nagpur would take about 1.5 hrs itself.

Su-30MKI can make a mad dash from Pune, however, it's "AD" role will be severely restricted once it gets to the IB due to lack of fuel - so it the AD role will come only after the Midas have geared up ... and so on ...

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Sunil » 09 Mar 2004 02:20

YIP,

:D

Boss this thread is turning into serious entertainment.

T-1400 emboldened by Indian desire for a ceasefire. Al Zarrar and Alkhalid equipped units attached to 10IAB and 14IAB at B'pur begin a crawl in the general direction of BP246.

T-1800: the Pakistani representative at the UN thunders about a `South Asian Nuclear Holocaust' and violently curses his Indian counterpart and vows to expel the infidel from hallowed Pakistani soil.

T-2000: an attempt by the Indian representative at the UN to state his case is greeted by disruptive behavior by his Pakistani counterpart. So severe is the Pakistani interruption that the UN session is adjourned.

T-2100: Ms. Applegate spends some quality time with her TFTA beau holding hands looking into his eyes.... .. unfortunately this moment of serenity is interrupted by the sound of a sonic boom as a PR Mig-25 passes over head.

T-2200: Jarred into action by the sonic boom.. General Abdul Khan goes on national TV, calling for national unity and strength. He appeals to all political parties to support his call reminding them that Allah T'aala has always supported the Pak Fauj (The Army of the Pure) in all its struggles.

T-2400: CR6549B detects major changes in the IR signature on the Okara-Haveli road and begins relaying information about the same to JOC.

T-2500: Strike package comprising Tuskers flying from a forward airbase interdicts 10IAB column north of Haveli. Intensity of the attack disables 2 squadrons of Al Khalids. Also the road further south is destroyed. The rest of 10 IAB is jammed in the mess and takes massive losses.

T-2600: 14IAB commander hears about the mess that 10IAB is in and orders his units to disperse. Soon Pakistani tanks are charging around the countryside trying to find their way about in the dark, not knowing where the f*ck they are going.

T-2700: News of the 10IAB's affairs reaches Maulana Masood Azhar at his ancestral home in B'pur. Much pandemonium reigns.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Mohan Raju » 09 Mar 2004 02:33

YIP:

Two thumbs up! Excellent writeup. (I would have preferred more details on Ms. Applegate, but I guess we can't have everything :D ).

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby b_ravi » 09 Mar 2004 02:35

Using the Su-30MKI against Pakistan is just overkill, the 190 should be positioned for China and possibly the US. The Mig-29, M2k, Jaguar, and Mig-27 could do the job good enough. With the Gorshkov along with 16-18 Mig-29, it will be able to dominate the a large part of Sindh's airspace. Then would come the ADS which would have 24-28 fighters and augment the air strike.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Y I Patel » 09 Mar 2004 02:54

Originally posted by Ashutosh:
YIP, agreed; but I have tried to say in a single sentence what I really mean - that a realworld "Divya Astra" or a "Durvasa" is currently feasible only after a mobilization is complete. At least of those units involved. Otherwise, we are not there yet.

Secondly there is a technical side of equipment that needs to be taken into account ... for an IL-78 to get to Punjab from Nagpur would take about 1.5 hrs itself.

Su-30MKI can make a mad dash from Pune, however, it's "AD" role will be severely restricted once it gets to the IB due to lack of fuel - so it the AD role will come only after the Midas have geared up ... and so on ...
Ashutosh:

We have grounds for a fair discussion here. The whole doctrine of a cold start, IMHO, would rest on starting an attack without waiting for mobilization to have even commenced seriously. Waiting even a day will just give Pakis the opportunity to "run the clock", and as I try to show in my narrative, that is what they are counting on. Note how the suddenness of the attack screws up their OODA loop! (hey Sunil, you thought I didn't read those things you threw at me during Leila?)

Regarding my choice of Su 30 MKs from Pune, well, we'll just use 29s from Jodhpur or Bisons from somewhere else, if that makes you more comfortable. The larger picture is that PAF is presented a war situation without any time for preparation. What we should really be thinking about is whether PAF can mount an attack in 90 minutes against an alerted IAF, and not have any welcoming committee waiting for them...

As for the Army formations, this is where my deliberate choice of the Pathankot-Akhnur area and of 10 Inf Div (10 RAPIDS in my story) and 2 IAB comes in. I don't believe I would be causing massive ripples of surprise if I state that these formations can be reasonably expected to be the among fastest reaction units in IA. Can they do what I want them to do in the time I allot them to do it? That's what cold start doctrine will be all about. Also note that I opted for Sialkot-Gujranwala deliberately, as opposed to other salubrious climes such as RYK, Mirpur Khas or Haji Pir. That was because an Indian formation even 5 km inside PakPunjab in that area is like a very sharp and pointed knife drawing a drop of blood from the neck in a Hollywood/Bollywood thriller. Hope you get the imagery!

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Ashutosh » 09 Mar 2004 03:09

Ok YIP, agreed. Let's leave the minor technical details aside.

Hmmm ... although I've heard about the ARN and ARS for quite some time - they seem to be portrayed as the pivotal formations that can decide the outcome of TSP's future? Can anybody point to an article explaining these two formations? Or can anybody write in brief about them?

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Balaji » 09 Mar 2004 03:21

YIP,

Like the scenario and naming. I think the operations should start about T+3 or T+4 hrs and continue into the night :D . That way, TSPA/F/N reaction will be the proverbial "groping in the dark" :rotfl: , adding some more masala to the confusion.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby NRao » 09 Mar 2004 03:26

are you aware that IA is in middle of a big effort
to have video & data links down to very low command levels ?
Somewhat. (There was a news item that India may get Israeli help for 3D graphics or something of teh sort.)

* However, that is not the problem. Gathering information (video, audio (yes, if possible), 3D, real-time, etc) is not that difficult - or may be I should say that India is on the curve - given her tech prowess. There is enough open source to back that statement.

The problem is to get the right information, in the right format, to the right PERSON at the right TIME.

Just to give you an idea and I forget the details, but US has got it down to 45 mins or less (in Iraq). They want to get it down to 2 minutes.

* India has yet to build a network to deal with *ALL* services. My understanding is that they are on their way. I have no ETA info though - and that is the way it should be.

Why video?
Display of maps, 3D pictures - with rotational abilities (imagine a commander facing a building is able to bring up the picture and is able to, on his hand held, "go around" the building) etc, etc, etc

*****************************

BTW, guys, can we take this Danskisque chatter to another thread - as interesting as it is. Thanks.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Sunil » 09 Mar 2004 04:04

Personally I am not a big fan of Judas Priest. I was going to put in some more recent Black Metal stuff but given the family forum nature of BR, I figured I would go in for the (now) predigested taste of Judas Priest. I mean how am I supposed to be a self respecting Evil, Cunning, Cow Urine Drinking Hindu Bania Dhoti if I don't listen to Black Metal also and my name doesn't have an umlaut on the "u"? ah? how is this supposed to work otherwise?

Anyhow returning to the more serious topic.

It is difficult for most Indians to imagine a scenario where mobilization isn't a concern. Most find it hard to think of things where you don't have to worry about x-thing not being in stock or y-thing isn't a combat ready asset.

Forget all the complicated stuff just imagine a situation where you don't have to worry about where the water is going to come from. Think how much that is going to change things.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Vriksh » 09 Mar 2004 04:35

wet dreams people... can we keep such fantasies outside the realm of discussion. apart from a supply of jihadis Pakistan is irrelevant.

We need to focus on reminding the Chinese and NKs that if any covert assistance PRC/DPRK nut or bolt/ enriched Ur/Pu kills any Indian then India will take economic action of 1. bombing Pyonyang 2. cutting off China's oil supply.

We should convey the idea that it is ok to help Pakistan openly since then you are acting in your economic interest by selling arms and we can prepare for that, however covert assistance in an act of bad faith/ a declaration of manovolent intentions and if we get harmed by your covert assistance to any nation then prepare to face our missiles/IN/IAF etc etc. Your tankers will be fair game. Overt assistance is also more easily influenced by our foreign and world opinion.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Y I Patel » 09 Mar 2004 06:50

When you read the scenario, please pay great attention to the end game. It is very easy, even fashionable to rail against US hegemony. We Indians, in particular, have raised it to an art form since the times of Krishna Menon.

However, US decision making is consistently exegient and pragmatic, and in many ways American power is like a force of nature. Pakistan, of course, has realised this since its inception. India has begun to get glimmers of understanding as well, and we found out just how pragmatic US can be after our experience of post-Pokhran 2. I will stoutly continue to defend my claim that Op Parakram and my War of Thousand Threats paradigm was another successful example of India working within the US response cycle. Which brings me to the US response I have portrayed here in Op Durvasa.

US's first response to third world bush wars, especially ones that have the potential to go nuclear, is to maintain stability without much agonizing over justness of cause. This would imply that if India starts a war, then India is the trouble maker, and it needs to be taught how to behave. However, if India gets within this response mechanism, achieves its objectives rapidly, and declares a ceasefire before US response has time to develop, then Pak will be seen as the inconvientient party, much as it was in Kargil. Then all the force of US and world opinion will turn against Pakistan, and it will be forced to come to terms with the consequences of its actions.

If this is the case, why has India not tried to pull something along these lines during past incidents? My belief is that the thinking was there, but the conservative Indian military establishment hesitated about its own ability to pull it off. The speed and efficiency of the Indian deployment during Parakram and the ample opportunities of Army-Air Force coordination during the year long deployment presented the military establishment with a living example of what can be done. There is more to it of course, such as in the areas of C4I. We have never had it so good as we do now, and a caper like Op Durvasa will require serious C4I to make it a success.

Finally, one must never forget the contributions of humble Mr Macadam, i.e., infrastructure. In Op Parakram, massive corps level formations crossed hundreds of kilometers; in some cases, one can imagine some of them crossing each other as they rushed to their deployment areas. Now this is not your ordinary traffic intersection - it is a supernova involving a potential collision of two massive entities if not pulled of correctly. The reason IA-IAF swagger around in Divya Astra is that they know they can pull it off again, if they need to.

Divya Astra, friends, was not an exercise. It was a demonstration.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby srai » 09 Mar 2004 07:34

Originally posted by kgoan:
Any idea of what a Battle Group will actually consist of? The composition and size will impact on the speed and reaction rate of it's manueverability.
...
Interesting stuff to speculate on.
I think the 8 battle groups will have different composite makeup depending on the area/sector/role that they'll be designed for.

For example, the forward groups, nearer the border, will probably be smaller but more mobile and pack more firepower -- in reflection of the quick reaction that the new strategy calls for. Sustaining a handful of smaller battle ready groups is much more economically viable. The remaining groups would be larger and further behind but with the capability to reactivate relatively quickly and reinforce the forward battle groups in the theater as needed.

Then there maybe a battle group that will be "marine"-like, operating with the IN support with the capability to react quickly to situations around the Indian Ocean rim. These maybe assisted by the IA airborne units operating with the IAF. Point to note here is that this group would most likely be lighter, since they'll not be designed to fight a full-scale war but more likely be used for urgent peacekeeping/humanitarian interventions, in which the enemy will be mostly small-armed rebels/terrorists.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby ramana » 09 Mar 2004 08:34

OK Yogi Why Durvasa? :(

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby RayC » 09 Mar 2004 09:27

Lets get down to brasstacks instead of fantasising.

If someone has the facts, can we have it? Then we can return to all this wargaming. What is 'T'?

No offence meant to anyone since you are all friends and what is more some are more informed than me. So, don't pull punches. I know that you know and yet you are acting coy.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby ramana » 09 Mar 2004 09:30

RayC, T is after the grenade is tossed as noted in YIP's initial post on the subject.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Prasenjit Medhi » 09 Mar 2004 10:00

Nice post by YIP. I would like to bring up some points, though.

Is Indian military NB! _ground_ action across the IB justified if Pak based jehadi groups cross a political rubicon?

Rather would an air raid/cruise missile strike on targets of political and military consideration be more suitable? These need not exclusively target points of importance for jehadis but also for the 'national' government in Pak.

Covert operations by India should also take place on selected sites in Pakistan, which have an equal symbolic, or notional, or even real political and military value to Pak.

Wars are like soldiers, they are difficult to control, in real life. Caution, and then more caution. If India goes in for a limited war, we should plan things very carefully, and have a exit strategy exactingly prepared.

The problem is, will Pak not respond, or attempt to, in kind, with what resources it has? There are no Himalayas in between India and Pak, just some wheat fields and some dunes .. They will seek to match Indian action with reciprocal action, if we mount punitive action, so will they, if we mount air strikes, so will they, if we mount ground operations, so will they. And thats the problem.

I'm in favour of air strikes and covert ops. The age of nation states warring appears to have disappeared. You need ambitious madmen, or mad and conflicting ideologies on the loose. We are not quite at that point. Thankfully. We may have to play out this scenario at some point 20 years from now when Paks population is at some 250 million and at about the same PCI then, as now. And with someone like Maulana Kaffir Smiter at the helm. But not right now .. Lets hope.

Pak is not Lebanon, and India is not Israel. Its more like Israel and Egypt .. With India as Israel, and if one were to imagine an Egypt out of the US orbit, and anti Israel, then Egypt as Pak, at least as far as military capabilities go if not manpower potential.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Prasenjit Medhi » 09 Mar 2004 10:19

The real Divya Astra in the IA is the jawan. Let it be noted. The IA needs to better train, better motivate, and take care of these men, better.

The Indian jawan subsists on a good diet, by Indian standards, but for example this could be improved. Meat is usually provided once, or maybe twice a week. This should be all days.

Fitness of the Jawan needs to be worked upon. While the initial training is very gruelling, over time, there is some .. softening. Modern physiotherapy and training need to be inducted into units, along with multigyms, etc.

So much time is spent on COIN ops, etc, that less time is devoted to training, etc. Standards in marksmanship are declining, afaik. I once saw a whole platoon of soldiers go through discharging their weapon without hitting the bullseye at 100 yards, last year. The lecture from the officer who just happened to be on the spot of what an Afghan would do to them if they missed him in Kashmir, only made them fidget and look grim.

The morale and pyschological well being of the Jawans has suffered. Soldiers are under constant stress. These are professional soldiers and not conscripts. Their morale and general welfare must be looked after more carefully.

Having said all that. Let me also say that, still, all things considered, the Indian soldier is still the best soldier in the world.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Rudra » 09 Mar 2004 10:26

to be realistic, GOI would not take such a step
within 15 mins...more like atleast 3 hrs of quick CCS deliberation, followed by 6 hrs for selected ground and air units to get ready..they would have to be at high level of readiness already as a matter of course.

If T is 12 noon, the op would start at 9pm. a big help to the bombing a/c.

I recall reading the soviet armies in east germany had a very elaborate system to mobilize at short notice. perhaps lessons can be learnt from the old soviet manuals on this topic.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Raja Ram » 09 Mar 2004 11:17

Come now ramana. Of course in honour of the famous sage of quick temper of whom you should be quite familiar with ;) !

Yogiji,

Apne to kamaal kar diya. You should be writing the next script for Bollywood's next war movie.

Seriously, I feel that IA has actually fashioned out several responses to several situations.

Situation 1 : Spectacular terrorist assault on high value target with possible deniability by PA

Response 1: Punitive retaliation at very short notice WITHOUT crossing the border/LOC - Divya Astra (Durvasa).

Situation 2: Kargil like salami slicing operation that involves pushing jehadis to occupy Indian territory with a view to encroach and occupy after a short war. Using their "indespensablity" to the US as a guarantee for international intervention

Response 2: Full scale limited war with an extended option of going beyond the Kargil operations in terms of complete blockade of Pakistan. Coordinated assault on border areas and sea based assault on Paki shipping and inland targets. This was developed as part of the Kargil war but was not exercised.

Situation 3 : Pakistan escalates a border war like Kargil and does a Zarb E Momin type grab operation. The additional card thrown in here is the readiness to escalate to nuclear showdown.

Response 3: Limited war that will be based on countering paki thrust AND take territory deep inside Pakistan (Operation Poorna Vijay type). This will include taking a tactical nuclear attack on Indian formations (Operation Poorna Vijay factored in fighting in an NBC environment)

Situation 4: The internal situation in Pakistan detoriates and the survivability of the state's power centers of Army and the RAPE classes are threatened. An increasingly cornered Paki leadership decides to launch an all out war on India to deflect attention, wrest kashmir and finally break up India before their state implodes. An all out war including pre-emptive nuke strikes to break the will of India is launched.

Response 4: It will be the end of Pakistan with a retaliatory strike many times more lethal than what they can throw and no matter what level of pressure exerted by the "international community" the Indian armed response will be the complete over run of Pakistan.

A point on the last situation, it may look politically and militarily not possible for India to pull this off at this point in time. The key part is "at this point in time". If ever such a situation comes to pass, it would be unprecedented and it is not unrealistic that India will respond in such a manner at that point in time. It is impossible to predict with absolute certainity what will be the level of response to an event until that event happens (sort of Heisenberg principle if you will)

The general direction of the perspective planning by defence planners seems to be to increase the gap in capabilities betweeen the two countries to such an extent that the capability to respond to situation 4 is there should the need arise.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby RayC » 09 Mar 2004 11:45

Rudra,

One would be very pleased if you could tell us about the Russian moblisation in Eastern Germany that yoy read. Maybe, things would be clearer. Right now, it's fantasising and daydreams.

All this hypothetical fun and games are moving away from the facts.

The majority and therefore playing 'games' does not allow on to concentrte on issues.

Indeed, if one doesn't know, it better to call 'pack up' and start a new thread that speculates with an approrpiate title.

The BRF is watched world over and therefore, it would not be correct if someone takes cognisance and feel it is the official view.

I am not specifically addressing you and so don't tak umbrage.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Aditya G » 09 Mar 2004 12:28

Can Artillery really be used as an "offensive" tactic as we have known it till now? Icreased firepower will perhaps cause unacceptable attrition, but how does this help us fullfill the objective?

It worked in Kargil because we were bombarding terrain that we had to capture without any doubts - but IMHO artillery can be a Combat Arm only if its mobile and integrated with the strike corps.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby RayC » 09 Mar 2004 13:33

In Kargil, it worked because there was no Pak air power.

I reckon there were real worried that it would enlarge the scope and that they were on the wrong end of the stick.

Maybe. It just speculation on my part.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby daulat » 09 Mar 2004 13:56

the scenario was good, however i think that there are more levels of the 'game'

1. the first strike option is IAF and potentially IN specific, and must take place within 4 hours of the initial action (T): long enough for something tangible to be executed and short enough to come in before significant reaction takes place

2. IAF/IN actions to cause 'humiliating' damage - not necessarily colossal, to stay within US and UN response timeframes, but sting the TSP leadership. Any PAF and PN response is blown out of the sky/water with the intent to kill not scare away; i.e. raise the economic cost of the conflict

3. If things are looking clear, then sustained arty barrage against PA units - preferably along known jehadi axis of movements: to create a limited punitive scenario, not a general war scenario. redecoration of muridke and binori occur during this phase (within T+12)

some outcomes

a. IAF to maintain a strike package on alert, much like interceptors today, with pre-coded targets. package includes top cover elements

b. IN to maintain atleast one missile cruiser off sindh coast 24x7 with the ability to penetrate, fire off and withdraw rapidly. Pune based Su30's can provide cover during withdrawal since during ingress the PAF/PN will not have sufficient reaction time

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Raj Malhotra » 09 Mar 2004 17:34

I think I agree with N3 100%.

YIP

even in your scenario IAF has primacy. i think you should update your scenario with suggestions and repost. slowly we can develop it into a paper/article/serious scenario!

In general

the hundred gun thingie does not really fit in today's political scene-time line. does this massed fire business show reluctance of army brass to accept change in times? are they refusing to let go?

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby shiv » 09 Mar 2004 18:44

Originally posted by Prasenjit Medhi:

The Indian jawan subsists on a good diet, by Indian standards, but for example this could be improved. Meat is usually provided once, or maybe twice a week. This should be all days.
.
Prasenjit - Indians culturally attribute certain diseases to certain foods. Giving meat every day may actually be counter productive. Food is blamed for a lot of diseases (often wrongly) but it could be seriuously bad for morale to force such food against age-old culttural beliefs. Depends on the religious/regional background of the soldier.

Besides - I personally think that you are off the mark with this meat every day as better than meat twice a week assertion.

Meat reauires a different logistics chain - including poultry, herds of goats/sheep - and fodder if they are alive or a cold chain if they have to be transported from the abbatoir.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby merlin » 09 Mar 2004 18:44

Maybe RayC should do an critique from a military point of view and let us all know why the scenario is pointless day-dreaming, fantasising and wet-dreaming?

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Umrao » 09 Mar 2004 19:01

We have Army Supply Corps ( famous BM Kaul was from that area) and military dairy farms accross the country to provide fresh meat etc.

Besides with modern technology I think it might be possible to give protein supplements that are as good as meat to the jawans diet.

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Re: Exercise Divya Astra: Shock & Awe

Postby Sunil » 09 Mar 2004 19:08

Hi Guys,

No offense meant to anyone, we all know BR is collection of short dark rice eating dhotis who are constantly wet dreaming about taking down the tall fair handsome tight a*sed Pakistanis so what is a few more wet dreams between friends?

BTW I forgot to tell you folks, my Super-rich Cousins from Allahabad, Meerut and Sikandarabad visited me recently, and they brought a lot of stuff with them for their trip. As they were about to leave, they realized that they couldn't really carry all of this stuff back as they already had more of it then they knew what to do with back where they came from. So they left all their cool stuff with me. Now I have to sit and figure out what to do with all this stuff. I think I am going to put the gps-guided sofa in my living room, what do you guys think?

Darn.. I am almost out of room in my wine cellar - where am I going to put all this good stuff? might as well drink it up.. I mean "Kal Ho Na Ho"..


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