As a newbie I am curious why given our strength currently deployed and the importance of tackling the Chinese Army early ( given the way they build infrastructure so rapidly) why our political leadership and our EAM have found it prudent to just watch and wait? Given the winter temperatures could there be a chance that our T90 tanks/Bofors guns etc. could get immobilised by the cold weather. While the comparison may not be appropriate and from my experience of cold Canadian winters, cars would have block heaters that would be plugged in overnight. While war is a dreadful, the salami slicing is difficult to accept
The altitude affects the PLA more than us (its not so much the cold, but the altitude). I've spent winter in Siberia. Its a picnic compared to 15,000
feet in north Sikkim or Ladakh.
Indian soldiers need to go back not more than 100 km, to rotate and rest at a lower altitude, after a stint at over 15,000 feet (Leh is at 11000 ft). The whole of the Tibet plateau is at 15000 ft, the Chinese will have to move back over 1000 km (the distance to their base railhead) after about 3 months at those altitudes. It will be a 3000 km journey, if they mobilise the 76th and 77th armies.
All the infra in the world cannot alter how the human body behaves.
Altitude and cold also affect vehicles. The PLA is way more dependent on them than we are.
The altitude and cold favour the defender. You expend a lot less energy resting in your dug in position, than advancing towards it.
Advancing vehicles (after a journey of several hundred km from the railhead in Xinjiang) are far more likely to break down than those dug in - our repair workshops are a lot closer to the front.
I'm not even considering the fact that a large proportion of our infantry are from the mountains and have spent most of their lives at high altitude and that we've spent decades figuring out how to operate at high altitude. IA is the only army in the world permanently deployed at high altitude.