CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

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Viv S
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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 06 Sep 2018 21:27

fanne wrote:some news portal are reporting that we have signed CASTAA, true?

CAATSA is a US federal law i.e. enacted by the US Congress, to enforce sanctions against Russia. Nothing for India to sign.

As far as India is concerned, we recognize only international law, and as such see the CAATSA as America's domestic problem. Its for their executive and legislature to sort out (through authorizing the executive to pass waivers).


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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby arshyam » 06 Sep 2018 22:36

Zynda wrote:
arshyam wrote:What does this even mean? Go cry to mummy? Comms are real-time things, going to court after the fact will be of no use. Assuming that there is a court that can enforce something here.

We have sold out our interests for sure, question is, by how much? That's what the fine print will reveal.

Will the fine print be available for public consumption? I don't think GoI is mandated to put out such details. Is 6 months enough for us to get a back up system up in place so that at least platform usage continuity is maintained? I am not gungho about this agreement signing as well. Not sure what GoI is seeing to sign a treaty which per available public info seems restrictive.

Some comments seem to allude greater sharing of intel & some EW gear from Massa...the quality of both which India feels like will a quantum jump compared to current capabilities.

Considering what's in the public domain is not flattering for GoI, they better come out and tells us exactly what we are getting out of it. This may not lose the election next year, but Modi's image as a strong India-first leader has taken a jump off a tall cliff. Some public information, preferably the fine print itself, is required so we know what we are in for (it doesn't look good from where I see it). Till then, I hold him fully responsible for compromising our interests.

PS. We should also think what would BRFs collective response would have been had MMS done the same thing.. I am merely upholding the same standard.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby kit » 07 Sep 2018 00:49

Strongly feel GOI comes clean on the deals like CAATSA and COMCASA, if not it will definitely erode the Modi Governments credibility

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby kit » 07 Sep 2018 00:51

Viv S wrote:
fanne wrote:some news portal are reporting that we have signed CASTAA, true?

CAATSA is a US federal law i.e. enacted by the US Congress, to enforce sanctions against Russia. Nothing for India to sign.

As far as India is concerned, we recognize only international law, and as such see the CAATSA as America's domestic problem. Its for their executive and legislature to sort out (through authorizing the executive to pass waivers).


its a US federal law all right but the way GOI goes buying American weapons it will be a matter of time that the Indian military is held hostage to some senators whim

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 16 Sep 2018 10:12

here is another brit sepoy singing for his supper or more realistically, his "grant" is up for renewal.

His "solution" is so simple, so logical and so well reasoned out and yet he conveniently forgets the enduring evil legacy of the brits in India.

Surely, it is not unimaginable that the UK would also be waiting in the wings to peddle some of its own shitty "weapon" systems under the guise and fond hope of the newly "expanded" weapons market in India after the same would be "prised" open by CATSAA.

India’s purchase of S-400 could be a mistake



India’s purchase of S-400 could be a mistake

John Dobson
September 15, 2018,

LONDON: If you had picked up a British newspaper on 5 September you would have found two faces staring at you. One was Alexander Petrov, according to his Russian passport, the other Ruslan Boshirov. Both are believed to be false names, as British intelligence has linked them to the GRU, Russia’s secretive military intelligence organisation. Both are believed to have been trained in assassination and espionage.

British police and intelligence services claim to have sufficient evidence to charge Petrov and Boshirov with the attempted murder of the former Russian spy, Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, using Novichok. Appearing in a comically unbelievable interview on Russian Television this week, Petrov and Boshirov claimed that they were civilians and simply visitors to Salisbury, but did not explain why their visit took them close to Skripal’s house just hours before they were found unconscious. President Vladimir Putin also denied any involvement by Russia, but perhaps forgot an earlier interview when he said darkly that being a traitor was “bad for your health”. It certainly was for the Skripals.

How should the free world respond to a country which acts in such a gung-ho manner, tossing aside well-established conventions? Initially, more than two dozen countries were persuaded by Britain’s compelling evidence and expelled a total of 150 Russian spies working under diplomatic cover. Then America and the EU added to the list of sanctions against Russia on the basis that it had “used chemical weapons in violation of international law”.

Sanctions against Russia have become the weapon of choice by the West, but they are a blunt instrument with complex side-effects for third parties. None more so than India. For example, in August 2017 a reluctant President Donald Trump signed into law the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), as a result of Russia’s “unacceptable behaviour in the use of chemical weapons, the annexation of Crimea and its interference in the 2016 US presidential elections”. In effect, this law makes it extremely difficult for India to contract with both Russia and America for arms purchases, unless America issues a “waiver” from CAATSA.

There’s another effect of US sanctions, which is unique to India. As Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman reminded Washington recently, India has an enduring relationship with Russia going back decades. Historically, India’s trade with Russia has flourished when Russia’s relationships with China have soured. Trade increased six-fold in the 1960s and 70s during Russia/Sino tensions, a great example of the ancient proverb “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”. Nowadays, the aggressive sanctions by the West against Russia are pushing President Putin towards China, a move which is changing the geopolitical dynamics in Asia.

If you don’t believe me, look no further than Vostok 2018, the major military exercise currently taking place on Russia’s eastern border. Unprecedentedly, Beijing is contributing 3,200 soldiers, 900 tanks and 30 jets to Vostok 2018, a move which must have created a severe headache in New Delhi. Russia has also delivered to China its first batch of the impressive S-400 mobile surface-to-air (SAM) system. India has been negotiating with Russia over several years for exactly this system.

So, in the light of both the dramatic geopolitical change in Asia and the possible sanctions against Russia, should contracts be signed for the S-400, rumoured to take place next month during the summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Putin?

I believe that there is now a strong argument for India to change direction and build up its arms purchases from the US. The announcement in 2017 that the US would sell India 22 predator Guardian drones, a contract worth $2-3 billion, is a great example. A delighted President Trump declared India to be a “major defence partner”. This year the US announced that the armed version of the drone would be authorised for India, a first for any country outside NATO.

It gets better. On 31 July the Trump administration placed India on the Strategic Trade Authorisation (STA) Tier-1 list, which would allow American companies to export more high-tech equipment under a streamlined licence exception. Currently only 36 countries, mostly NATO, have this designation and India is only the third Asian country, after Japan and South Korea, to achieve it.

New Delhi is keen to purchase the advanced stealth strike fighter aircraft, F-35, from America, but Washington fears that the stealth characteristics of this aircraft would be compromised if India purchases and integrates the S-400 into its air-defence network. This move would also reduce credence in the US’ current operational stealth advantage and would almost certainly result in the refusal of any sales of the F-35 to India.

Following the 2+2 talks last week, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the US is not seeking to punish India for its Russian arms purchases, hinting that a waiver from CAATSA might be forthcoming. However, it is by no means certain that an unpredictable American President will do so and India might find itself with a dilemma if it contracts for the S-400. Already it is reported that financial sanctions by the US have hit India’s arms trade with Russia hard, with payments for weapons and equipment worth over $2 billion stuck after banks refused to make remittances to Moscow fearing penal action.

There is a simple, but controversial solution to this dilemma, which would require political courage: cancel the S-400 and purchase from America the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) SAM system, the one supplied recently to South Korea. The two systems have different characteristics, but the sophisticated THAAD is particularly effective against long-range missiles.

The purchase of the S-400 could, therefore, be a mistake by India. It should take full advantage of its STA Tier-1 status and cancel the S-400, purchase THAAD and proceed smoothly to the purchase of the F-35. By doing so, India’s defences will be substantially stronger.


John Dobson worked in UK Prime Minister John Major’s Office between 1995 and 1998 and is presently Chairman of the Plymouth University of the Third Age.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Trikaal » 16 Sep 2018 12:34

At this point, S-400 has become an ego issue. If we don't buy it now, ties with Russia will be damaged beyond repair. This buy has morphed into as much a diplomatic decision as it is a strategic one. If India backs down now, it will send a message across as India not being reliable. After that, we will have no choice but to fully join the US camp.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 16 Sep 2018 15:19

Trikaal wrote:At this point, S-400 has become an ego issue. If we don't buy it now, ties with Russia will be damaged beyond repair. This buy has morphed into as much a diplomatic decision as it is a strategic one. If India backs down now, it will send a message across as India not being reliable. After that, we will have no choice but to fully join the US camp.


There is a bumper sticker in the US....

Insured by Smith and Wesson



The S-400 is India's Smith and Wesson.

That's why the US does not want it in the region.

The pakis are already very jittery about it.

If India backs out at this late stage, the russkies may well offer to sell to the pakis and justifiably so. Saudi/other ummah will finance them.

if we buy, the kindly amerikis will eventually sell the pakis an ameriki equivalent, THAAD (??) to counter us.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Trikaal » 16 Sep 2018 16:10

^THAAD to pakis? Not while they are so cosy to the cheen. US hasn't forgotten how the Pakis helped Cheen reverse engineer Tomahawks.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Austin » 16 Sep 2018 19:39

S-400 is more of political hot potato for congress and USG , US does not want Turkey to buy S-400 under the guise of interppibility with NATO so it’s trying to force all US friends too not buy S-400 , SAM is just a defensive weapon we have far greater offensive system bought or under deal with Russia.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby ArjunPandit » 16 Sep 2018 23:16

Trikaal wrote:^THAAD to pakis? Not while they are so cosy to the cheen. US hasn't forgotten how the Pakis helped Cheen reverse engineer Tomahawks.
and not to forget the crashed helicopter at OBL raid in abbottabad. That said, how's either of S400 or Thaad going to be funded? perhaps some chinese copy of S 400

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Trikaal » 16 Sep 2018 23:23

ArjunPandit wrote:and not to forget the crashed helicopter at OBL raid in abbottabad. That said, how's either of S400 or Thaad going to be funded? perhaps some chinese copy of S 400

I thought they burned that helicopter before leaving, didn't they?

Regarding funding, another long-term loan probably even for a chinese knock-off :P

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby ArjunPandit » 16 Sep 2018 23:40

Trikaal wrote:
ArjunPandit wrote:and not to forget the crashed helicopter at OBL raid in abbottabad. That said, how's either of S400 or Thaad going to be funded? perhaps some chinese copy of S 400

I thought they burned that helicopter before leaving, didn't they?

Regarding funding, another long-term loan probably even for a chinese knock-off :P

They did blast it off, but IIRC the tail part was not fully destroyed. It was showed to the chinese and of course returned to americans

https://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/15/worl ... opter.html

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 17 Sep 2018 00:20

Austin wrote:S-400 is more of political hot potato for congress and USG , US does not want Turkey to buy S-400 under the guise of interppibility with NATO so it’s trying to force all US friends too not buy S-400 , SAM is just a defensive weapon we have far greater offensive system bought or under deal with Russia.


It is not just the amerikis but europe/NATO as well who are extremely uncomfortable with the S-400 so close.

It would be extremely to understand why the S-400 system triggers such a reaction. Not the usual interoperability junk that is being bandied about.

turkeys help can be used only against some ummah country and the turks may not be agreeable to that, politically speaking so the interoperability thingee is not a real factor there.

Their opposition to India getting the S-400 is different. We will not get into a shooting war with a third party, just to help the amerikis out, so why should give it up??. The interoperability thingee will not work with our tankers, AWACS, sukhois and a whole bunch of India and russkie made ships and subs. So what exactly are the amerikis up to??

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 00:31

chetak wrote:The S-400 is India's Smith and Wesson.

Its China's Smith and Wesson at the moment, though a better comparison might be with some sort of shield. At the moment, we've got nothing that we can pit against the Chinese ADGE with even the efficacy of the Rafale being questionable in a penetrative role.

That's why the US does not want it in the region.

The pakis are already very jittery about it.


Militarily, the Pakis aren't our main concern. We can handle them with or without the S-400.
There is no conceivable situation in which the US goes to war with India; an Indian S-400 isn't a threat to them. It does however cut off the prospect of an F-35 sale; a (theoretical) integration of into the same AD system could allow the S-400 user to calibrate the system against the F-35's radar signature.

If India backs out at this late stage, the russkies may well offer to sell to the pakis and justifiably so. Saudi/other ummah will finance them.

if we buy, the kindly amerikis will eventually sell the pakis an ameriki equivalent, THAAD (??) to counter us.

THAAD? Not a hope in hell. They're much more likely to get a Chinese-variant of the S-400, offered on concessional credit. Over the short term though they're just negotiating for the HQ-9 (Sino S-300).

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 00:48

Viv S wrote:
chetak wrote:The S-400 is India's Smith and Wesson.

Its China's Smith and Wesson at the moment, though a better comparison might be with some sort of shield. At the moment, we've got nothing that we can pit against the Chinese ADGE with even the efficacy of the Rafale being questionable in a penetrative role.
.

Who does? There is no guarantee that even the US with f35s and jassms will be able to penetrate Chinese ADS. I think a combination of mkis with brahmos and Rafale with scalp are as good as anything the world has ATM, and I would rate the chances of the first more than the second.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 17 Sep 2018 00:54

Viv S wrote:
chetak wrote:The S-400 is India's Smith and Wesson.

Its China's Smith and Wesson at the moment, though a better comparison might be with some sort of shield. At the moment, we've got nothing that we can pit against the Chinese ADGE with even the efficacy of the Rafale being questionable in a penetrative role.

That's why the US does not want it in the region.

The pakis are already very jittery about it.


Militarily, the Pakis aren't our main concern. We can handle them with or without the S-400.
There is no conceivable situation in which the US goes to war with India; an Indian S-400 isn't a threat to them. It does however cut off the prospect of an F-35 sale; a (theoretical) integration of into the same AD system could allow the S-400 user to calibrate the system against the F-35's radar signature.

If India backs out at this late stage, the russkies may well offer to sell to the pakis and justifiably so. Saudi/other ummah will finance them.

if we buy, the kindly amerikis will eventually sell the pakis an ameriki equivalent, THAAD (??) to counter us.

THAAD? Not a hope in hell. They're much more likely to get a Chinese-variant of the S-400, offered on concessional credit. Over the short term though they're just negotiating for the HQ-9 (Sino S-300).


The amerikis may well have an "export" version of the THAAD for sale. The pakis will surely be gunning for it.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 00:55

Austin wrote:S-400 is more of political hot potato for congress and USG , US does not want Turkey to buy S-400 under the guise of interppibility with NATO so it’s trying to force all US friends too not buy S-400 , SAM is just a defensive weapon we have far greater offensive system bought or under deal with Russia.

US' stated problem with the S-400 isn't its role or even the inter-operability but the fact that it'll be integrated into the same network as the F-35.

Lets say the S-400 is operating in the same area as the F-35, either on exercises or routine operations. The S-400 is beaming away, maybe getting an identifiable return off the F-35, maybe not, depending on the range. But if the SAM's detection data is paired with precise coordinates and aspect data for the TuAF F-35, can be used to significantly refine the S-400's tracking ability and threat library.

The underlying concept is similar to naval sub/anti-sub warfare. Where an amorphous radar return might earlier have been tagged as a 'potential' hit, it could now be used to identify a specific heading and altitude. Also applies to EM emissions - the S-400 is also a ISTAR asset. If the Russians have access to the data it collects, they will, in effect, be gathering data round-the-clock within supposedly sanitized NATO airspace.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 17 Sep 2018 00:58

Cain Marko wrote:
Viv S wrote:Its China's Smith and Wesson at the moment, though a better comparison might be with some sort of shield. At the moment, we've got nothing that we can pit against the Chinese ADGE with even the efficacy of the Rafale being questionable in a penetrative role.
.

Who does? There is no guarantee that even the US with f35s and jassms will be able to penetrate Chinese ADS. I think a combination of mkis with brahmos and Rafale with scalp are as good as anything the world has ATM, and I would rate the chances of the first more than the second.


The hans are adept at knocking off cheap copies of a system. They have had decades of reverse engineering expertise under their belt.

That does not necessarily translate to quality or even high efficiency.

If the rafale goes through, then the F-35 is out. No one would be so foolish to induct so many complex systems into the IAF. Maybe a few F-35 will get pushed to the IN but then again we will get only the neutered and spayed "export" version.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 01:03

In terms of the Pakistanis, what the s400 does is that effectively takes out any hope they may have to survive, even with nukes. Their ability to hit anything except over their own territory is immediately suspect and even there it will be very hard for them. In one stroke their main chance to cause damage to India via irbms and alcms is severely degraded if not totally neutralized.

It also frees up precious assets for the iaf, which can then relocate them as needed. Creates a lots of options for the iaf and huge headaches for it's enemies.

This is a priority for India. A very potent force multiplier and the IAF knows it.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 17 Sep 2018 01:03

Viv S wrote:
Austin wrote:S-400 is more of political hot potato for congress and USG , US does not want Turkey to buy S-400 under the guise of interppibility with NATO so it’s trying to force all US friends too not buy S-400 , SAM is just a defensive weapon we have far greater offensive system bought or under deal with Russia.

US' stated problem with the S-400 isn't its role or even the inter-operability but the fact that it'll be integrated into the same network as the F-35.

Lets say the S-400 is operating in the same area as the F-35, either on exercises or routine operations. The S-400 is beaming away, maybe getting an identifiable return off the F-35, maybe not, depending on the range. But if the SAM's detection data is paired with precise coordinates and aspect data for the TuAF F-35, can be used to significantly refine the S-400's tracking ability and threat library.

The underlying concept is similar to naval sub/anti-sub warfare. Where an amorphous radar return might earlier have been tagged as a 'potential' hit, it could now be used to identify a specific heading and altitude. Also applies to EM emissions - the S-400 is also a ISTAR asset. If the Russians have access to the data it collects, they will, in effect, be gathering data round-the-clock within supposedly sanitized NATO airspace.


which data the russkies could already be collecting via their satellites.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 01:10

Cain Marko wrote:Who does? There is no guarantee that even the US with f35s and jassms will be able to penetrate Chinese ADS. I think a combination of mkis with brahmos and Rafale with scalp are as good as anything the world has ATM, and I would rate the chances of the first more than the second.

There are degrees to which a penetration is carried out. Its less an event and more a varying capability.

While the JASSM will be cleared for external carry, the F-35 with JSOWs, for example, is certainly far far more capable in both a deep strike as well as ISTAR role compared to a Rafale slinging a dirty payload.

Keep in mind, we're talking not just in terms of the ADGE but the entire C4I network including surveillance radars, aerostat radars, SAMs, AWACS, fighters etc. Fixed targets like bridges & buildings are easily targeted but every mobile Chinese asset will be cloaked within the fog of war. The Rafale's sensors are capable but the platform itself can only operate at standoff ranges. Its somewhat less observable than the average 4th gen fighter but in tactical terms the difference isn't huge.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 01:14

chetak wrote:
Cain Marko wrote:Who does? There is no guarantee that even the US with f35s and jassms will be able to penetrate Chinese ADS. I think a combination of mkis with brahmos and Rafale with scalp are as good as anything the world has ATM, and I would rate the chances of the first more than the second.


The hans are adept at knocking off cheap copies of a system. They have had decades of reverse engineering expertise under their belt.

That does not necessarily translate to quality or even high efficiency.

If the rafale goes through, then the F-35 is out. No one would be so foolish to induct so many complex systems into the IAF. Maybe a few F-35 will get pushed to the IN but then again we will get only the neutered and spayed "export" version.


The f35 is nowhere near Indian horizon afaik. The push is for the shornet. And the iaf won't fall for it, not with the Rafale already at hand and not with their deep suspicion of US hardware esp. as the tIp of the spear. Note how neither of the US ponies made the technical cut in mrca 1.0. it might even be the reason for not inducting LCA mk1 in large numbers - they might be wary of being held hostage by the engines.

I think the iaf along with parrikar decided on hedging their bets especially as a defensive strategy via increasing mki availability and using it as a workhorse, using Rafale as silver bullet and getting the ADS as robust as possible with native competencies, and the s400 is integral to this strategy. Strategic Independence.

The Navy has more leeway in this matter and we see more US hardware in it's arsenal.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 01:18

chetak wrote:which data the russkies could already be collecting via their satellites.

The difference between what is possible using intermittent satellite imagery and what amounts to a permanent aerial test range, is like the difference between grainy black-and-white photograph and a video in 1080p. Technically both can be defined as data but they are vastly different in terms of their usefulness.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 17 Sep 2018 01:21

Cain Marko wrote:
chetak wrote:
The hans are adept at knocking off cheap copies of a system. They have had decades of reverse engineering expertise under their belt.

That does not necessarily translate to quality or even high efficiency.

If the rafale goes through, then the F-35 is out. No one would be so foolish to induct so many complex systems into the IAF. Maybe a few F-35 will get pushed to the IN but then again we will get only the neutered and spayed "export" version.


The f35 is nowhere near Indian horizon afaik. The push is for the shornet. And the iaf won't fall for it, not with the Rafale already at hand and not with their deep suspicion of US hardware esp. as the tIp of the spear. Note how neither of the US ponies made the technical cut in mrca 1.0. it might even be the reason for not inducting LCA mk1 in large numbers - they might be wary of being held hostage by the engines.

I think the iaf along with parrikar decided on hedging their bets especially as a defensive strategy via increasing mki availability and using it as a workhorse, using Rafale as silver bullet and getting the ADS as robust as possible with native competencies, and the s400 is integral to this strategy. Strategic Independence.

The Navy has more leeway in this matter and we see more US hardware in it's arsenal.


what you have outlined above is the correct approach.

No sense in putting all our strategic eggs in one single and extremely risky US basket.

They have already taught us a very bitter lesson.

So we should spread the risk and maintain operational independence to suit us and our counter our regional security threats as well as our supply lines.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 01:30

Viv S wrote:
Cain Marko wrote:Who does? There is no guarantee that even the US with f35s and jassms will be able to penetrate Chinese ADS. I think a combination of mkis with brahmos and Rafale with scalp are as good as anything the world has ATM, and I would rate the chances of the first more than the second.

There are degrees to which a penetration is carried out. Its less an event and more a varying capability.

While the JASSM will be cleared for external carry, the F-35 with JSOWs, for example, is certainly far far more capable in both a deep strike as well as ISTAR role compared to a Rafale slinging a dirty payload.

Keep in mind, we're talking not just in terms of the ADGE but the entire C4I network including surveillance radars, aerostat radars, SAMs, AWACS, fighters etc. Fixed targets like bridges & buildings are easily targeted but every mobile Chinese asset will be cloaked within the fog of war. The Rafale's sensors are capable but the platform itself can only operate at standoff ranges. Its somewhat less observable than the average 4th gen fighter but in tactical terms the difference isn't huge.


I think the f35s edge over the Rafale here will be only marginal especially in the context of Indian surveillance assets, if that. The massive power and range of the s400 will be very hard to penetrate so as to get close enough for jsow types.For the f35 to be truly effective it needs the kind of Intel assets that only the US/NATO can bring to bear from satellites, jstars, global Hawks to awacs and refuellers. India simply does not have those kind of support assets. Nor does it have the kind of money to develop such infrastructure.

A far better option is to use very long stand off weapons like the scalp on Rafale, brahmos on mki and jassm carried externally by a jsf. Frankly I'd put my money on the mki bmos combo thanks mainly to the speed of the weapon.
Last edited by Cain Marko on 17 Sep 2018 01:34, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 01:32

Cain Marko wrote:The f35 is nowhere near Indian horizon afaik.

Well we're talking in the context of the article from the Sunday Guardian posted by Chetak right? Its the one suggesting that the STA-1 move opens the door to the F-35.

The push is for the shornet. And the iaf won't fall for it, not with the Rafale already at hand and not with their deep suspicion of US hardware esp. as the tIp of the spear. Note how neither of the US ponies made the technical cut in mrca 1.0. it might even be the reason for not inducting LCA mk1 in large numbers - they might be wary of being held hostage by the engines.

I think the iaf along with parrikar decided on hedging their bets especially as a defensive strategy via increasing mki availability and using it as a workhorse, using Rafale as silver bullet and getting the ADS as robust as possible with native competencies, and the s400 is integral to this strategy. Strategic Independence.

The Super Hornet isn't going to make the cut for the IAF. The Rafale will but isn't going to significantly alter the IAF's lopsided odds against a rapidly expanding and modernizing PLAAF.

The Rafale might have qualified as a 'silver bullet' ten years ago. Today, on the other hand, against a full spectrum PLA threat (which since May, includes one S-400 regiment), its very much a workhorse. A very capable workhorse, maybe even the best workhorse there is, but a workhorse nonetheless.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 01:46

I was thinking of a more general context not necessarily confined to the sta 1 upgrade.

In terms of tackling the growing Chinese menace, Indian strategy seems to be more focused on brahmos and its variants. It's the best in it's class, has a very good and long ranged carrier in the mki, and should soon have a variant that will fit the Rafale, giving it a big capability leap. Also important, India has some level of control over it.

Frankly it's a pretty sound plan, which does not require massive investments into newer platforms that might impinge on strategic Independence. The infrastructure for these three assets has been carefully cultivated by India and over time, there will be greater local input and therefore control over these. For example, we might see a brahmos on a Rafale or three on an mki. I don't see this happening on a US platform.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 01:47

Cain Marko wrote:I think the f35s edge over the Rafale here will be only marginal especially in the context of Indian surveillance assets if that. The massive power and range of the s400 will be very hard to penetrate so as to get close enough for jsow types.For the f35 to be truly effective it needs the kind of Intel assets that only the US/NATO can bring to bear from satellites, jstars, global Hawks to awacs and refuellers. India simply does not have those kind of support assets. Nor does it have the kind of money to develop such infrastructure.

Its one of the most popular misconceptions about a 5th gen fighter. In contrast to conventional fighters, its designed from ground up to require less support in battle than any other asset. That it can act as a STR force multiplier is added utility not a limitation.

If anything, its primarily utility (at this stage at least) is as the eyes-and-ears of the fleet. It can function as a persistent ISTAR asset behind enemy lines whereas a Rafale, particularly an armed one, will need to resort to active jamming (again questionable against frequency agile radars) to get past enemy radar tripwires, which in turn will no doubt invite enemy interceptors.

A far better option is to use very long stand off weapons like the scalp on Rafale, brahmos on mki and jassm carried externally by a jsf. Frankly I'd put my money on the mki bmos combo thanks mainly to the speed of the weapon.

Its not so much a question of how you hit it but how you see it. There are dozen different means of hitting a target (including LACMs) but getting close enough to generate a weapons grade track of target is easier said than done. And that's just emitting targets, there are a host of mobile non-emitting targets that need engaging as well, from supply convoys to C3I nodes.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 01:52

What I'm really not getting here is the US objection to the s400, which is essentially a defensive weapon. Surely there is no threat posed to the US by Indian s400s?

Apart from the obvious sanctions strategy against Russia, my guess is that the US realizes that this investment will make the mrca purchase all the more unlikely which is an opportunity neither Boeing not LM would want to lose. Hopefully, it is nothing more than that although more sinister purposes could easily be attributed considering all the noIse that is being made by SD babus

And if it is a purely commercial angle that is causing all the rnd, then it can be dealt with in multiple ways which are sure to be win win. India, I'm sure will be happy to buy sea guardians, p8s, c130s et al., possibly even a few tankers. Things that it could use that only the big man could provide.
Last edited by Cain Marko on 17 Sep 2018 02:17, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 02:02

Cain Marko wrote:I was thinking of a more general context not necessarily confined to the sta 1 upgrade.

In terms of tackling the growing Chinese menace, Indian strategy seems to be more focused on brahmos and its variants. It's the best in it's class, has a very good and long ranged carrier in the mki, and should soon have a variant that will fit the Rafale, giving it a big capability leap. Also important, India has some level of control over it.

Frankly it's a pretty sound plan, which does not require massive investments into newer platforms that might impinge on strategic Independence. The infrastructure for these three assets has been carefully cultivated by India and over time, there will be greater local input and therefore control over these. For example, we might see a brahmos on a Rafale or three on an mki. I don't see this happening on a US platform.

Like I said, the BrahMos is great for hitting what we can see. But this is the information age and modern warfare is about dominating the information domain. Each side is packing thousands of missiles and bombs, the challenge is to land the blow right.

In the event of a war, the very first thing the Chinese will hit are our satellites covering their territory. The second thing they'll do is relocate every asset of there's that's capable of motion. Doesn't matter whether they move it by a mile or ten, it'll be enough to squash any possibility of the IAF/IA firing off CMs blind (aside of course from static targets). We're making arrangements via COMCASA to get real-time access to US intel in wartime but that shouldn't be an alternative to organic capability.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 02:10

Viv S wrote:
Cain Marko wrote:I think the f35s edge over the Rafale here will be only marginal especially in the context of Indian surveillance assets if that. The massive power and range of the s400 will be very hard to penetrate so as to get close enough for jsow types.For the f35 to be truly effective it needs the kind of Intel assets that only the US/NATO can bring to bear from satellites, jstars, global Hawks to awacs and refuellers. India simply does not have those kind of support assets. Nor does it have the kind of money to develop such infrastructure.

Its one of the most popular misconceptions about a 5th gen fighter. In contrast to conventional fighters, its designed from ground up to require less support in battle than any other asset. That it can act as a STR force multiplier is added utility not a limitation.

If anything, its primarily utility (at this stage at least) is as the eyes-and-ears of the fleet. It can function as a persistent ISTAR asset behind enemy lines whereas a Rafale, particularly an armed one, will need to resort to active jamming (again questionable against frequency agile radars) to get past enemy radar tripwires, which in turn will no doubt invite enemy interceptors

This could work against a less formidable foe where the bird could fly high and loose behind enemy lines but against a robust threat as posed by the Chinese ADS, I doubt this is likely. IOWs, if you don't have the assets, it's stealthy operation against multiple s400 types might not be easy and therefore not too different from say a Rafale carrying a scalp. In effect it's recon ability for a country like India independent of US type Intel is questionable

A far better option is to use very long stand off weapons like the scalp on Rafale, brahmos on mki and jassm carried externally by a jsf. Frankly I'd put my money on the mki bmos combo thanks mainly to the speed of the weapon.

Its not so much a question of how you hit it but how you see it. There are dozen different means of hitting a target (including LACMs) but getting close enough to generate a weapons grade track of target is easier said than done. And that's just emitting targets, there are a host of mobile non-emitting targets that need engaging as well, from supply convoys to C3I nodes.


my point is that against an s 400 type, the issue is can you get close enough? Even with a stealthy platform. Yes you might see it better but the window to kill it might not be any different before the jsf is itself tracked and engaged. After all, the jsf will need to get close enough to release a jsow (130km range?), At which point it well within range of the ADS.

might be much better to use recon assets out of the beast's range and then fire extremely fast CMs from a safe distance.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 02:11

Viv S wrote:[ We're making arrangements via COMCASA to get real-time access to US intel in wartime but that shouldn't be an alternative to organic capability.

That's all well and good but why do we need f35 to get this Intel?

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 02:21

Cain Marko wrote:What I'm really not getting here is the US objection to the s400, which is essentially a defensive weapon. Surely there is no threat posed to the US by Indian s400s?

What probably bothers them is the S-400's ELINT functions. If the Russians have access to the data it collects combined with telemetry from our C4I system, it limits what they can sell to us.

If we think back to the Red Flag 2007, participating IAF Su-30s operated with training modes since they were flying almost through an a ELINT sieve at Nellis range. Similarly, if the IAF or IN was operating US-origin equipment in an Indo-Russian exercise, we'd be operating it in a 'training mode'.

But if the Russian had access to data (through maintenance or whatever) from a system like the S-400, merged with telemetry from Indian C4I system, from an environment where US-origin equipment is operating without restrictions, well, that would seriously worry the Americans. One solution would be to build some sort of firewall around the S-400, another would be to create operational protocols to keep it away from US systems except for contingencies.
Last edited by Viv S on 17 Sep 2018 03:13, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 02:53

Cain Marko wrote:This could work against a less formidable foe where the bird could fly high and loose behind enemy lines but against a robust threat as posed by the Chinese ADS, I doubt this is likely. IOWs, if you don't have the assets, it's stealthy operation against multiple s400 types might not be easy and therefore not too different from say a Rafale carrying a scalp. In effect it's recon ability for a country like India independent of US type Intel is questionable

This is exactly what VLO capability is about. And no its not been easy to achieve. Between the F-22 & F-35 programs, the US (and partners) have sunk nearly $90 billion in R&D costs.

Ingress into highly defended airspace varies depending on the aircraft's capability. A Rafale will never get anywhere as close to any radar as an LO type.

my point is that against an s 400 type, the issue is can you get close enough? Even with a stealthy platform. Yes you might see it better but the window to kill it might not be any different before the jsf is itself tracked and engaged. After all, the jsf will need to get close enough to release a jsow (130km range?), At which point it well within range of the ADS.

might be much better to use recon assets out of the beast's range and then fire extremely fast CMs from a safe distance.

Exactly. But before you can fire an extremely fast CM, you need to get your 'recon asset' close enough to get a bead on the beast, without the beast or, more likely, the beast's minions gobbling it up.

Like I emphasized in the previous posts, we'll be dealing not just with Chinese S-400s but the entire PLA air defence system. The recon asset in question will have to get past fighter sweeps, roving AWACS as well as static radar nets just to get to the SAM (its unlikely that the Chinese will plonk the system right on the border).

(JSOW-ER range is upto 300 nm, while the JSM 300 nm+.)

That's all well and good but why do we need f35 to get this Intel?

Well the original plan was to use the FGFA to operate inside enemy air space. But aside from questions about the Su-57s suitability in the role, the program appears to be years away from offering the kind of mature reliable product that the IAF requires.

Contract for two more Su-57 fighters and plans for further purchases
As reported by the agency TASS, August 22, 2018 at the International Military Technical Forum "Army-2018", taking place in Kubinka. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and PJSC "Sukhoi Company" signed a contract for the supply to the Armed Forces of two fifth-generation fighter aircraft Su-57 (T-50) .The contract will be executed in 2018-2020.

In his turn, speaking on August 22 at the forum "Army-2018", Deputy Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation Alexey Krivoruchko said that a contract was signed for the delivery of the first serial cars Su-57. "The first serial aircraft Su-57 will arrive in the VKS in 2019. Taking into account the received test results, including the positive verification of the aviation complex in Syria, the Ministry of Defense of Russia plans to receive 15 serial cars in the near future, "said Alexey Krivoruchko.

Speaking about the Su-57 aircraft with the engines of the second stage, the deputy head of the military department noted that the Russian Defense Ministry is awaiting the start of serial deliveries of aircraft with new engines since 2023.

The bmpd comment. Thus, according to known data, the contract signed for another two Su-57 (T-50) fighters brings the total number of the first serial (actually pre-series) Su-57 fighters to four, acquired in the Russian military aviation market, taking into account the existing "Dry" contract for the first two serial Su-57 (in the form of T-50S), which should be delivered in 2019. The delivery of two additional aircraft is scheduled, presumably, for 2020.
In the future, according to available information, it is possible to purchase 11 more Su-57 serial fighters in the form of the first stage in 2021-2022, with plans to switch from 2023 to purchase as small batches of modernized Su-57 aircraft with a second-stage engine.

Thus, the Ministry of Defense of Russia is quite cautious line for long-term development and development of the Su-57 fighter. As our blog has already written, in all likelihood, really large-scale mass production of the Su-57 for the Armed Forces of Russia will be started beyond the limits of the current State Armaments Program for 2018-2027, that is, not earlier than in 2028-2030.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Philip » 17 Sep 2018 03:40

In the aftermath of the N-deal, it was later revealed by a yanqui that it was " all about us buying US weaponry".
Thus, when it was not a priofity at all, and the great urgency was acquiring 124+ MRCAs, like a bolt from the blue we bought 10 C-17s allowing Boeing to keep its production line open for a few more years.C-130J Hercules transports,Chinooks and ultra- expensive Apaches sweetened the deal.The icing on the cake was supposedly the MRCA, but the IAF shafted the two yanqui birds rightfully as they were obsolete machines, not upto the merits of the Eurocanards.

CAATSA is a follow-on measure of that deal, where the Yanquis get us to principally buy US weapon systems which they can operate through their NCW systems.This interoperability and acquisition of major assets of ours to be used against China , is grossly in favour of Uncle Sam, everything paid for by us, cannon- fodder for the Chins.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Cain Marko » 17 Sep 2018 08:55

Viv S wrote:
Cain Marko wrote:This could work against a less formidable foe where the bird could fly high and loose behind enemy lines but against a robust threat as posed by the Chinese ADS, I doubt this is likely. IOWs, if you don't have the assets, it's stealthy operation against multiple s400 types might not be easy and therefore not too different from say a Rafale carrying a scalp. In effect it's recon ability for a country like India independent of US type Intel is questionable

This is exactly what VLO capability is about. And no its not been easy to achieve. Between the F-22 & F-35 programs, the US (and partners) have sunk nearly $90 billion in R&D costs.

Yes but so far they have demonstrated their capabilities only against Ragtag ADS and we have very little idea as to how well such Uber stealth platforms will perform in better defended airspace as can be expected from China. We know that hyper expensive assets do not guarantee safety as shown by the f117 incident vs Serbia.

Ingress into highly defended airspace varies depending on the aircraft's capability. A Rafale will never get anywhere as close to any radar as an LO type.

Point is it might not have to if it has supersonic long ranged missiles like the brahmos, a distinct possibility with mkis and Rafale unlike a jsf.


my point is that against an s 400 type, the issue is can you get close enough? Even with a stealthy platform. Yes you might see it better but the window to kill it might not be any different before the jsf is itself tracked and engaged. After all, the jsf will need to get close enough to release a jsow (130km range?), At which point it well within range of the ADS.

might be much better to use recon assets out of the beast's range and then fire extremely fast CMs from a safe distance.

Exactly. But before you can fire an extremely fast CM, you need to get your 'recon asset' close enough to get a bead on the beast, without the beast or, more likely, the beast's minions gobbling it up.

Like I emphasized in the previous posts, we'll be dealing not just with Chinese S-400s but the entire PLA air defence system. The recon asset in question will have to get past fighter sweeps, roving AWACS as well as static radar nets just to get to the SAM (its unlikely that the Chinese will plonk the system right on the border).

(JSOW-ER range is upto 300 nm, while the JSM 300 nm+.)

That's all well and good but why do we need f35 to get this Intel?

Well the original plan was to use the FGFA to operate inside enemy air space. But aside from questions about the Su-57s suitability in the role, the program appears to be years away from offering the kind of mature reliable product that the IAF requires.

Contract for two more Su-57 fighters and plans for further purchases
As reported by the agency TASS, August 22, 2018 at the International Military Technical Forum "Army-2018", taking place in Kubinka. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and PJSC "Sukhoi Company" signed a contract for the supply to the Armed Forces of two fifth-generation fighter aircraft Su-57 (T-50) .The contract will be executed in 2018-2020.

In his turn, speaking on August 22 at the forum "Army-2018", Deputy Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation Alexey Krivoruchko said that a contract was signed for the delivery of the first serial cars Su-57. "The first serial aircraft Su-57 will arrive in the VKS in 2019. Taking into account the received test results, including the positive verification of the aviation complex in Syria, the Ministry of Defense of Russia plans to receive 15 serial cars in the near future, "said Alexey Krivoruchko.

Speaking about the Su-57 aircraft with the engines of the second stage, the deputy head of the military department noted that the Russian Defense Ministry is awaiting the start of serial deliveries of aircraft with new engines since 2023.

The bmpd comment. Thus, according to known data, the contract signed for another two Su-57 (T-50) fighters brings the total number of the first serial (actually pre-series) Su-57 fighters to four, acquired in the Russian military aviation market, taking into account the existing "Dry" contract for the first two serial Su-57 (in the form of T-50S), which should be delivered in 2019. The delivery of two additional aircraft is scheduled, presumably, for 2020.
In the future, according to available information, it is possible to purchase 11 more Su-57 serial fighters in the form of the first stage in 2021-2022, with plans to switch from 2023 to purchase as small batches of modernized Su-57 aircraft with a second-stage engine.

Thus, the Ministry of Defense of Russia is quite cautious line for long-term development and development of the Su-57 fighter. As our blog has already written, in all likelihood, really large-scale mass production of the Su-57 for the Armed Forces of Russia will be started beyond the limits of the current State Armaments Program for 2018-2027, that is, not earlier than in 2028-2030.



I'm not saying that the f35 is not more stealthy than the Rafale, it obviously is and stands a better chance at not being detected. What I'm questioning is that whether that level of stealth will make the jsf any less susceptible to a gbad centered around the rather powerful s400. Esp. Vs. a platform that carries supersonic stand off missiles like the brahmos. Keep in mind also that India will probly be able to only mount rather slim, stand alone type missions without the the kind of the rather excessive backup of US/nato surveillance assets.
IOWs is the US model that is based on insanely heavy investments not only in stealth but support assets really practical for India?

As far as recon assets go, I don't see why elint assets couldn't get a picture of the s400 based on it's emissions from a safe distance and then transfer these to say mkis with brahmos. Even if they can only created the picture for a very short while, it might be enough for a fast missile like the brahmos to cause damage. This would not be possible with a subdonic. I think Vivek Ahuja had gamed a pretty decent scenario for precisely such an eventuality.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby brar_w » 17 Sep 2018 10:29

Keep in mind also that India will probly be able to only mount rather slim, stand alone type missions without the the kind of the rather excessive backup of US/nato surveillance assets.
IOWs is the US model that is based on insanely heavy investments not only in stealth but support assets really practical for India?


F-22, F-35, KF-X, FX-4, TF-X, J-20. J-31, and AMCA all have significant overlap in terms of the emphasis on Low-Observables, Internal weapon bays, Embedded Antenna and LPI/LPD emissions. Assuming that in all those cases operators drive requirements you have a glimpse at a possible driver for those designs. If Low Observable and other supporting technology makes the susceptibility of these aircraft to a current GBAD (leave aside a future one) *questionable* relative to the Rafale why do you think everyone that can is investing in similar areas?

Gone are the F-117 days when LO was the sole driver of survivability. Current designs rely on LO, speed, Electronic Warfare (Electronic Attack, EW and ESM), agile, LPI communication, better targeting and a combination of stand-off and stand in weapons. Similarly, they are able to undertake a diverse set of missions in the air-combat, Electronic surveillance and even C2 roles when paired with legacy aircraft. The LO features makes each one of those capabilities better because they enjoy higher survivability and are able to get closer and exploit more gaps in the enemy surveillance network to execute the mission. On the net this reduces your reliances on support assets such as dedicated SEAD/DEAD assets, AEW etc. It does not do away with the requirement but there is less burden on these assets .

This is not the case with a advanced 4th or 4.5 generation aircraft which would show up with less capability and would require added support and greater reliance on stand-off weapons which can only be used against certain types of targets. Not to say that the Rafale is bad or a poor choice - It is a superb aircraft. However, most have moved on from it as is evident from the charecteristics being valued in current and future advanced figther aircraft such as those listed above (also see what Airbus is proposing to develop for the Typhoon/Rafale follow-on). Operators are moving "there" not because it is fashionable but because they see significant tactical advantage to add these features to a melting pot of other trades that they hand over to designers.

As far as recon assets go, I don't see why elint assets couldn't get a picture of the s400 based on it's emissions from a safe distance and then transfer these to say mkis with brahmos. Even if they can only created the picture for a very short while, it might be enough for a fast missile like the brahmos to cause damage. This would not be possible with a subdonic. I think Vivek Ahuja had gamed a pretty decent scenario for precisely such an eventuality.


SEAD/DEAD concepts are a little more complicated then that and require a very high level of coordination and stand-in ability even with the best equipment and tools available amidst a host of denial and counter-denial measures and tactics adopted by the S400 operator trying to negate ways to easily pick off those sensors or shooters (TELs). The US Navy, for example, has led SEAD/DEAD efforts in the US and is only now beginning to think of ARMs beyond 200 km range. This is not because they couldn't build a missile that could go that distance but because closing the kill chain on an agile target at that distance was not very practical with technology that existed over the years. There are quite a few measures a SAM AD system operators can take to deny very long range targeting or complicate SEAD/DEAD from SO distances. Similarly, a SAM/AD zone will usually also be mixed in with offensive and defensive assets which go out and specifically hunt for C2 and AEW aircraft that are trying to swoop information for aiding current or future strikes. In a nutshell, it is not very easy to target a modern IADS from 300+ km away when the adversary is ready to defend.
Last edited by brar_w on 17 Sep 2018 16:12, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby chetak » 17 Sep 2018 10:58

@brar_w

long time no see.

glad that you are back :)

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Re: CAATSA...An Oxymoron?

Postby Viv S » 17 Sep 2018 17:38

Cain Marko wrote:Yes but so far they have demonstrated their capabilities only against Ragtag ADS and we have very little idea as to how well such Uber stealth platforms will perform in better defended airspace as can be expected from China. We know that hyper expensive assets do not guarantee safety as shown by the f117 incident vs Serbia.

The "not combat proven" epithet applies to every major weapon system in production. Has the S-400 been proven in warfare against a near-peer military foe? How do we know that it isn't utterly useless in a real war?

Your logic can be extended to two French platforms, as well. The Mirage 2000 was never flown in combat, save against ragtag ADS. The Rafale was never flown in combat, save against ragtag ADS. Can we therefore say that we have little idea of the Rafale's performance as compared to that of the Mirage 2000?

Truth is, we do have more than a little idea of how they compare. Similarly, we do have a good idea of about the effectiveness of VLO platforms. They have been tested against representative high-end surface threats, have participated in DACT, and the outcomes, by most accounts, have more than justified their "next-generation" tag.

With respect to the last point, the F-117 shooting makes for a great rhetorical point but the actual lessons learnt had nothing to do with the limitations of technology. The key takeaway was that LO needs to be combined with capable mission systems (the F-117 didn't even have a RWR, let alone ESM) and effective tactics (the F-117s flew the same flight-path day after day enabling the Serbs to set up an ambush). The aircraft's stealth aspect functioned as it was meant to (the SAM's FCR locked on at a range of just 13 km).

Point is it might not have to if it has supersonic long ranged missiles like the brahmos, a distinct possibility with mkis and Rafale unlike a jsf.

I'm not saying that the f35 is not more stealthy than the Rafale, it obviously is and stands a better chance at not being detected. What I'm questioning is that whether that level of stealth will make the jsf any less susceptible to a gbad centered around the rather powerful s400. Esp. Vs. a platform that carries supersonic stand off missiles like the brahmos.

Well two things.

First, the Brahmos isn't a variable, its a constant. Its already delivered and operational. Its not an alternative to anything because its already available regardless of where the data for cueing it comes from.

Second, you need to make a clear distinction between the shooter and the sensor. Launching a Brahmos is the final stage of the kill chain. (For time-sensitive targets though, the sensor & shooter might have to be the same platform.)

If one visualized the Brahmos as a bullet, the OODA element that precedes it would be the gun. And as capable as a bullet might be, its useless until its loaded into a gun that works.

What we're discussing here is the sensor-element of the cycle, which is what makes your argument is inherently contradictory. On one hand, you're saying that the Chinese AD is so formidable that it puts into question the F-35's survivability in a deep ingress ISTAR role, while at the same time maintaining that the Rafale could do the same job unimpeded.

Keep in mind also that India will probly be able to only mount rather slim, stand alone type missions without the the kind of the rather excessive backup of US/nato surveillance assets.

IOWs is the US model that is based on insanely heavy investments not only in stealth but support assets really practical for India?

Like I said in my previous post, this is an complete myth/canard. A VLO platform requires far less surveillance & EW support than a conventional platform equipped with a similar level of organic ESM/EO capability. Its just as useful in the Israeli or Indian model as it is in the US or NATO model.

As far as recon assets go, I don't see why elint assets couldn't get a picture of the s400 based on it's emissions from a safe distance and then transfer these to say mkis with brahmos. Even if they can only created the picture for a very short while, it might be enough for a fast missile like the brahmos to cause damage. This would not be possible with a subdonic. I think Vivek Ahuja had gamed a pretty decent scenario for precisely such an eventuality.

That's because, as I said previously, the S-400 (like the HQ-9s) will not operate in isolation. The area forward of it will be covered with low level radar, AAA & QR-SAMs, the airspace over it will be covered by AEW&C units, and the area in general will be covered by roving fighter CAPs. The ELINT asset (Rafale?) may be operating at a range where its safe from the S-400 (though in case it will create a lower quality picture of the battle-space), but its still susceptible to interception by other PLAAF units.

I think it'll be easier to appreciate the situation if we flip it around.

Lets say the IAF places an S-400 squadron at Chandigarh. The PAF responds by purchasing a few batteries of the road-mobile CX-1B (aka Chinese Brahmos/Onyx) and basing an ELINT unit at say Peshawar. What stops the Pakistanis from taking down the Indian S-400 unit, given that they have all the components of the S-400 killing module? The answer is obvious.. the rest of the IAF. The S-400 is just once among the many elements of a net centric air defence environment, all which support each other in battle.


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