soviets could have never attacked pakistan not in 80's even in their wildest dream....pakisan was part of CEANTO which meant attacking pakistan would draw US in the war....
soviets could have never attacked pakistan not in 80's even in their wildest dream....pakisan was part of CEANTO which meant attacking pakistan would draw US in the war....
Well there's no denying that without regional help there was no way US would have managed to create mess for Soviets and that regional help was China. Technically if USSR were to resurrect again, the first country to get blown off its feet would be Pakistan considering that Soviet era war hawks might be holding a grudge against them. Simply put, Pakistan is just playing games on borrowed time. Let's see:
Economically, it owes World Bank and IMF $ 54 billion. This is excluding the dozens of $50-500 million loans that you've been handing out to them. They technically owe $ 10 billion + to the US for saving their economy. Not to mention their ideological masters the Arabs in 100s of millions of dollars.
Militarily, it is even worse. Barring the aid weapons, nothing is coming in on its own.
If we sum all the amount up including matters we don't know, it comes to around more than $100 billion they owe to half the world. Wonder when they would get rid of that kind of debt if they continue on their present path. US is not stupid like Indian government to watch all its money getting wasted. And I am sure that CCP has plan B incase its money is not returned as well.
China also supplied gratis some weapons to the Mujahideens as per Cooley in Unholy Wars.
Wrong. SEATO was dissolved in 1977, CENTO in 1979.
Wrong. SEATO was dissolved in 1977, CENTO in 1979.
Mate, we attacked Pakistan in 1971 and cut the country in half. I don't know if Pakistan was part of CEANTO or whatever back then, but it was definitely still a US ally, and if the US didn't have the guts to attack a third-world country like India after we gave Pakistan their darkest hour what are the chances that they would attack the Soviet Union?
A lot of people here are saying that WWIII would have started over Pakistan, but I don't buy it. Pakistan wasn't that important for the US. The Yanks had far more important puppets, like Saudi Arabia and pre-Revolution Iran.
Well, you kinda spoke against your own point there. Why would it concern the US, the Indian invasion of Pakistan? The Cold War included more sabotaging the other side, than improving your own side meaning = Pakistan wasn't held a puppet because the US needed it, but because USSR needed it.
I don't know how do you imagine an invasion of Pakistan by the Soviets. They couldn't hold onto Afghanistan itself. Of course they could I mean, but it cost them so much that it sped up the process of USSR desintegration by at least 5-10 years. I personally don't think Afghanistan was worth the price Soviets paid, I think it's Brezhnev's fault, just like I would blame him the most for the USSR desintegration. He destroyed the ideology (no matter how compromised it already was) for the sake of USSR national interests - no wonder there were never any ideological spies in the 80s.
Back to the topic, I believe that invading any country as large as Pakistan was, is impossible in modern warfare. I don't think you can subdue a 100million country (roughly the pop of Pak back then), just by military. Who would the Soviets/India put their as the puppet government? Noone. Who could they put - noone. The communist movement there was non-existant, and I don't even want to mention what kind of "support" would a pro-Indian govt have in Pak. Also, any invasion of Pakistan would be that much harder by the fact it's much further than Afghanistan (oh and did I mention that supply lines would go through a hostile environment), and the fact that US would be able to ship unlimited resources via sea.
USSR could have a strong influence over Pakistan only in the case of their eventual victory in the Cold War. I percieve it as one of the most resilient could-be-invaded places by the USSR.
Even when India and Portugal were at war (over Goa), Portugal tried to invoke NATO clauses to preserve it's hold on Goa, but nothing quite happened.
Recently, the Russian Federation gave a solid drubbing to Georgia in general and Mikheil Saakashvili in particular ('the beacon of democracy in the Caucasus and a great ally of the USA in the former Soviet backyard'), and commandeered US owned hummers back into the Russian Federation and the US could not do much about it. I am pretty sure if tomorrow the Russian Army intervenes in Estonia 'to protect ethnic Russians and defeat neo-Nazi groups', and manages to get a complete stranglehold on the country within 24 hours, which I am pretty sure the Russian Army is capable of, the US will still be seeking a negotiated way out of such a quagmire; and NATO and all it's glorious mutual commitments will go for a toss.
Who says the USSR didn't strike back! i bet the KGB had more than a peripheral role in the death of GEn. Zia and the american ambassador(remember the C-130 crash)! Anyhoo coming back on topic the one reason the Soviets could not carpet bomb pakistan into submission(i would personally love to see balckjacks dropping bombs on islamabad one day) was the sheer no of westerners in the nation(albeit in the guise of aid workers)! any assault on pakistan would endenger these lives as well giving the americans a legal pretext to checkmate the USSR, hence the restraint!
India was one of the most important Soviet allies by the 70s. The Indian victory in the 1971 war greatly reduced American influence in South Asia, since they were now down to just West Pakistan.
Clearly, America was concerned by the Indian victory, because Nixon dispatched the 7th Aircraft Carrier Fleet to the Bay of Bengal. However, the Fleet was deterred by Soviet nuclear subs from Vladivostok.
If America thought that using an aircraft carrier strike force against India would be too much of a risk, there is no way in hell they would have attacked the USSR over Pakistan. In a WWIII scenario America would be facing a lot more than a couple nuke subs.
You bring up a valid point there. Even in the 80s Pakistan had a population of 90 million, which is no small figure. However, I never said that the Soviet Union/India would take over the whole country. Pakistan can be divided into roughly five regions: Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, NW Tribal Areas, and Northern Areas.
The most populous of these regions - as well as the most fertile - is Punjab, which accounts for half of the population and one-fourth of the total area. The Punjabis are the dominant ethnic group in the Pakistani sociopolitical system. They make up 90% of the military and control the majority of political positions.
Sindh makes up about one-fifth of the total population and one-fifth of the area. The ethnic Sindhis make up about 60% of the population, and maintain a distinct identity. Since the 70s there have been conflicts between the Sindhis and the Mohajirs (Muslims from India who emigrated to Pakistan after the Partition). The Mohajirs make up 20% of the population and dominate urban economic activity in Sindh. The province is also home to nearly all of Pakistan's Hindus, who together form about 8% of the Sindh's population. Sindh is also home to Pakistan's only major port and largest city, Karachi.
Balochistan is by far the largest province, accounting for over 45% of the total area, but only about 5% of the population. The ethnic Balochis are mostly a nomadic people and are fiercely independent. In the 80s there was a very active independence movement in Balochistan (it is still quite active today), which was allegedly supported by India's intelligence agency, RAW. Regardless, the Pakistani central gov used heavy handed measures against the Balochi people, which gave Gen. Zia the title "Butcher of Balochistan". Balochistan is also notable for providing much of Pakistan's energy (through hydropower and natural gas) and making up most of Pakistan's coastline.
The NW Tribal Areas are similar in ethnic composition and geography to Afghanistan. The warlike Pashtuns are the dominant ethnic group here, and the society is tribal and deeply conservative. The Pakistani central gov has very limited control here.
The Northern Areas consist of Pakistani-occupied Kashmir (POK) and the agency of Gilgit-Baltistan. Both regions are claimed by India as part of Greater Kashmir. The Balti people of Gilgit-Baltistan are tribal and independent; recently there have been reports of a simmering rebellion amogst them against the Pakistani central gov. I don't know much about them in the 80s. As for POK, it is one of the most heavy-handed regions of Pakistan. Very little information comes into the region and very little comes out.
Coming back to topic, I envision the objective of a joint Indo-Soviet invasion to be the further partition of Pakistan and the occupation of strategically important areas, NOT the complete conquest of the country. Military interventions in Sindh and Balochistan can easily take these areas out of Islamabad's grasp. Pro-Soviet and pro-Indian governments can be established in both regions, which will give the USSR their dream of direct access to a warm-water port in the Indian Ocean (Karachi). As for the NW Tribal Areas, the Pashtuns have long desired a united nation for all their people, to be named Pashtunistan. This country can be created using Pakistan's NW Frontier Province as well as the eastern parts of Afghanistan. And finally, the Northern Areas will go to India, which will complete the reunification of Kashmir. The only region to remain part of "Pakistan" will be Punjab, which will be left without access to any ports and deprived of energy, making it extremely dependent on India and Indo-Soviet puppet states.
Thus, the permament castration of the ill-concieved state of Pakistan would be complete.
Also, keep in mind that the geography of Pakistan would lend itself to Soviet tactics much more than Afghanistan. The Red Army was trained to fight on the plains of Eastern Europe, not the deserts and mountains of Afghanistan.
You are very wrong when mentioning the aid workers thesis. I doubt that Americans gave a rats ass about them, they only care about them as long as it serves a national interest. Just look at the Korean and Vietnam war. You have losses of Soviet personnel in both (20+ thousand in the Korean war), and nothing happened directly between the US and USSR, because noone wants to destroy the world because of some petty troops (the way they see them). I think that in general, no powerful nation is actually going to do anything serious (take direct military action) because it lost a few hundred troops/aidworkers or whatever to a rival.
Civfanatic, of course I understood you didn't mean the entire Pakistan. But even disecting it is hard enough! To be honest, I don't know how would the Soviets get there in the first place (by getting there I mean litterally that - how would they go throught the guerilla infested mountainous Afghanistan healthy enough to attack Pakistan which is stronger?). Also, the US would certainly involve - they've had a history of not allowing even smaller and less serious incursions. This Indo-Soviet invasion would mean the complete annihilation of all American South-Asian interests, and great danger of the red tide sweeping over Iran, and even Middle East... Imagine a Communist Middle East + India! I doubt the world would be the same today!
Just as the Soviets replied with SSBN deployment, so would Americans reply with deployment of their Navy (well, we all know how badass is US Navy).
You might've noticed that I didn't mention the India factor at all. That's because I think India was way more less capable militarily than the Soviet Union, and more importantly because opposition to India's troops would be as fierce as it gets. Not to mention the Saudi + Emirates funding, China involvement...
I can go on like forever. I just don't think invasion of Pakistan was possible by the Indo-Soviet anywhere near possible.
Why would the Soviets even want Pakistan? If they were going to invade a country, better to be Iran that has raw material wealth.
Give the Soviet Airborne some credit. In the 70s and 80s the USSR had the world's largest fleet of transport aircraft. This was necessary because the sheer size of the country made regular land deployment too slow. IL-76s based in the Uzbek and Tajik SSR could probably airlift entire divisions into Pakistan. They did in Afghanistan, so why not Pakistan?
Also, the Soviets actually had a pretty good grasp over the major roadways in Afghanistan, as well as the cities. What they had a problem with was subduing the countryside and the mountain strongholds. It would still be possible for Soviet land convoys and armored forces to pass from Uzbekistan to Pakistan. However, I enivision the Soviet involvement in Pakistan to be mainly limited to the VDV (Airborne Troops), strategic bombers (Tu-16s and Tu-22s based in Central Asia can easily flatten all of Pakistan), special forces, and fighters (MiG-29s and Su-27s from Bagram Air Base can establish air superiority over most of Pakistan, in conjunction with the IAF). Most of the actual manpower and armor will be provided by India.
Which one in particular? Keep in mind that the USSR let America invade Vietnam, which would be far more serious than a potential Soviet invasion of Pakistan.
It certainly would, yes. But the US didn't have much interests in South Asia in the first place, since South Asia lacks strategic resources like oil. As you said, the US kept Pakistan only to keep an important strategic asset out of enemy hands. But just as the USSR backed down when the US turned up the heat on Cuba, the US would back down if the USSR turned up the heat on Pakistan. Pakistan was simply not directly relevant to American interest, unlike Cuba, or even the Middle East states. Luckily for India, Pakistan does not contain much oil...
The US had already lost Iran by this time, due to the Islamic Revolution. Anyway, I doubt the USSR would ever invade the Middle East. That WOULD cause WWIII, because the West would have too much to lose (basically, oil).
The Saudis and the UAE can't do much except send money to resistance groups. As for China, they wouldn't try anything funny with the USSR in the neighborhood.
In 1947, Churchill said India was "as much a country as the Equator" and that Indian democracy was doomed to fail because of regionalist feelings.
In the 1950s, people said a great famine in India was imminent and that by the 1970s India would collapse from an enormous food crisis.
In the 1960s, people said it was impossible for India to sever Pakistan into two seperate parts/
Well guess what...
Encounter between Soviet MiG-23s and Pakistani F-16s during the Afghanistan War, 1987:
On April 29,1987, L/C Pochitalkin led a flight of four MiG-23s to mine mountain path under Mujahedeen control in the Djavara region,to the south of Host. These routes were used to supply weapons and ammunition to the dykhi(ghosts-Russian translation of Farsi 'dyshman' meaning bandit) who blockaded the town. The strikes delivered 1,100lb(500 kg) bombs onto the highland passes effectively blocking the way for the arms caravans. The MiG-23s were usually armed with up to four KMGU (Ronteyner Malogabaritnyh Gruzov - small weapon container) each carrying 24 anti-personal mines.
At the place where the Griffons would have to 'work' (meaning 'to execute an order' in the Russian Air Force), Mujahedeen had many and varied air defence weapons including Chinese built 12.7mm DShK machine guns, and 20mm Oerlicon guns with a range of 6600 ft. And from 1986, Dykhi used General Dynamics' Stinger shoulder-mounted surface-to-air missile (SAM), with a range of 11,550 ft to defend thier main bases. These would have to be destroyed and the flight group leader decided upon the following mission: fly to the target at 26,400 ft, and just before reaching it, dive to 1,320 ft and toss the bombs while climbing, then enter a 90 degree left rolling climb to 23,100 ft. Such tactics would avoid entering Mujahedeen air defence space.
Early on the morning of April 29, four MiG-23s got airborne from Bagram. Meteorological conditions were difficult with multiple cloud layers, known as puff pie, starting at 9,900 ft up to 33,000 ft. The monotonous highland terrain also complicated orientation, but L/C Pochitalkin was an experienced pilot - he regularily led four to eight Griffons during combat missions. Just before the target area, he managed to find his bearings by the little town of Tani, to the south of Host. The three MiGs folloed him closely. The war had provided pilots with the opportunity to gain considerable experience of formation flying, so they are really tight.
Just before the taget, the MiGs descended, then during the steep climb released their bombs and, keeping close formation, climbed left into a combat turn leaving the battle course at 90 to 100 degrees. Having reached 21,450 ft, the flight leader lokked back, and between the clouds saw a flying torch-like flame. Thingking it could be a plane from his group, L/C Pochitalkin turned his MiG aroung and called to his wingman. All three pilots responded immediately that they were OK. The flight leader reported to base that he had seen a burning aircraft, and Major Osipenko, the regiment's intelligence officer, flying in the trailing aircraft, confirmed this. Then L/C Pochitalkin banked left vectoring onto the torch. Suddenly, all the MiG pilots saw an F-16 Fighting Falcon appear from heavy clouds at 13,200 ft, it made a steep bank round its burning co-partner, engaged the afterburner, and disappeared into the clouds, heading for Pakistan territory. On the way home, the airwaves were alive with the questions about the incident to the flight leader.
After landing at Bagram, L/C Pocjitalkin told that his group had been attacked by a pair of Paistan Air Force F-16s and one F-16 was shot down. Later this report was confirmed by Had, Afghanistan intelligence, an offshoot of the Soviet KGB (and a very effective servvice). It reported that the F-16 pilot ejected safely, landing in a rebel controlled region - he was transferred to Pakistan that night. Later, wreckage from the Falcon was also transferred.
Throughout the analysis of the incident, one major question remained unanswered - how was the F-16 was shot down, when the Griffons were not armed with missles. Three possiblities were considered by the committee.
The first, and the most likely, was that the F-16 met the rain of bomb mines on its rising trajectory and blew up. The Falcons probably took off from Kamra Air Base, near Miranshah. Kamra is situated so close to the Afghan border that the F-16 could launch their Sidewinders immediately after getting airborne. PAF pilots intended to intercept Soviet fighters at high altitudes, assuming that they would be dive bombing, but on that day the Griffons'worked' on the climb, and steeply descended before the attack. At that moment, the F-16 could have slipped forward and become caught up in the 'cloud' of bombs.
The second version suggested that during pursuit, the F-16 came upon the climbing MiGs, and trying to avoid them, the Pakistan pilot jerked the plane into a sharp bank and exceeded the maximum g-load.
The final theory was that the Falcon could have been shot down by his wingman. Intercepting th MiGs from the aft hemisphere, the F-16s tracked them on their radar up to the point where they released their bombs. But when the close formation Griffons carried out drastic flak evasion manoeuvers, the F-16s had to carry out the turn and the wingman may have hurriedly fired his Sidewinders accidently hitting his leader.
Dear man, this is where you miss the point. We know Pakistan like the back of our hand. Born out of medieval Islamic imperialism and colonization of subcontinent, we Indians know their weaknesses. The objective of Indian military has always been to pulverize their economy and their weapons/military/retaliatory capability to such an extent that they remain in stone age for at least another 100 years; not destruction of 100 million people.
Pakistan is a country borne out of Islamist radicalism (consider it a bigger version of Chechn mullah mentality), xenophobia of "kafir" mainstream Hindus/Sikhs/Buddhists and other Indic branches of Faith, a false superiority complex to mask their shame and a suicidal desire to adopt everything Arab, Turkish and Persian as a part of their history which never was theirs. These 3 points here itself are the easiest for Indian military to manipulate and with Soviet Union's superpower status, it would have been far more easier for us to operate. USSR's intention was to have a puppet state government installed in Afghanistan by supporting Najibullah's Communist Party of Afghanistan government.
India's objectives were far different. We didn't want Pakistan's sub-servience; we wanted to retake entire Kashmir from them and leave them penniless, economy-less and defence-less to almost non-recoverable extent. 80s could have been simply been an excuse to extend '71's war with Pakistan and continue disintegrating its different provinces that have more tribal loyalty among them than a sense of national unity.
USSR's invasion of Pakistan would have been far easier than Afghanistan because of their engagement with us and our thorough knowledge of Kashmir--the part that is illegally encroached by Pakistanis till date including Gilgit-Baltistan province, Shaksham valley (donated to China for their protection against us) and Aksai Chin (illegally occupied by China today). Entering Pakistan through POK was the easiest thing USSR could do keeping all its armed forces in Tajikistan again.
Afghanistan being chaotic even then could do little to stop Soviets from crossing the Badaghshan strip and entering POK (Pakistan occupied Kashmir) and into Pakistan. What's more, Indian military would have given the full force behind this possible invasion, including filling Soviet generals with all necessary details of terrain, mountain warfare capabilities, situation in fighting in Himalayas etc; since it was noticed that Soviet military lacked skills in fighting in mountainous areas. They were trained to fight NATO in European plains but not the hostile Himalayas.
True there was no Communist government in Pakistan but that was even better excuse to disintegrate their society and mentality to such an extent that if at all USSR later attacked Afghanistan for expanding its empire, it would face zero resistance from a broken down, weak and in-effective Pakistan.
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