China has five airbases, extensive rail-road networks in Tibet: Antony

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by pmaitra, Mar 8, 2011.

  1. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    China has five airbases, extensive rail-road networks in Tibet: Antony

    Rajat Pandit, TNN | Mar 7, 2011; Times of India

    NEW DELHI: Apart from nuclear missile bases in Qinghai province which clearly target India, China has built five fully-operational airbases, an extensive rail network and over 58,000 km of roads in Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR).

    People's Liberation Army is also rapidly upgrading several other airstrips in TAR as well as south China, to add to the five airbases from where Chinese Sukhoi-27UBK and Sukhoi-30MKK fighters have practised operations in recent times.

    Moreover, with extensive road-rail links in TAR, PLA can amass upwards of two divisions (30,000 soldiers) at their "launch pads'' along the border in just 20 days now compared to the over 90 days it took earlier.

    All this is not strikingly new but, soon after Beijing hiked its annual military budget to $91.5 billion, mounting concern over China's massive build-up of military infrastructure was reflected in Lok Sabha on Monday.

    Cutting across party lines, 19 MPs came together to quiz defence minister A K Antony on whether the UPA government was taking "cognizance'' of the "increased Chinese military activities'' along the 4,057-km LAC.

    Antony, in a written reply, said "necessary steps'' were being taken in consonance with India's national security concerns. "Military capacity enhancement and modernisation of armed forces is a dynamic process, which takes into account the cumulative challenges envisaged by the nation,'' he said.

    "The total road network in TAR is assessed at 58,000 km in 2010. Extension of Qinghai Tibet Railway to Xigaze is in progress. Another railway line from Kashgar to Hotan in Xinjiang Uighur Autonmous Region is under construction,'' he said, adding the five TAR airfields were Gongar, Pangta, Linchi, Hoping and Gar Gunsa.

    India is now, albeit belatedly, trying to strategically counter China. Just last week, for instance, saw two new Sukhoi-30MKIs touch down at Chabua airbase in Assam, the second airbase in North-East after Tezpur to house the multi-role fighters. Both airbases will have two Sukhoi squadrons (each has 16 to 18 jets) each.

    The Army, on its part, has raised two new mountain infantry divisions, with 1,260 officers and 35,011 soldiers. While the 56 Division has its HQ in Zakama (Nagaland) under the Dimapur-based 3 Corps, the 71 Division at Missamari (Assam) falls in the operational command of the Tezpur-based 4 Corps.

    IAF is also upgrading eastern sector ALGs (advanced landing grounds) like Pasighat, Mechuka, Walong, Tuting, Ziro and Vijaynagar as well as several helipads in Arunachal. This comes after the reactivation of western sector ALGs like Daulat Beg Oldi, Fukche and Nyama in eastern Ladakh.

    Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...works-in-Tibet-Antony/articleshow/7648434.cms
     
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  3. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    Last edited: Mar 8, 2011
  4. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    ^^ Looking at some of the PLAAF airbases, I was wondering if Myanmar would allow overflights to the PLAAF in case of hostilities between India and PRC. In case it does, IA and IAF should be ready to carry out punitive actions against Myanmar and bring them down to their knees.

    Said that, it would be a challenge for those PLAAF aircraft to take off from the airstrips high up in the Tibetan Plateau. IAF has an advantage here.
     
  5. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The concentration of airbases are to the East of India.

    It indicates that that is area from where they would release their main air effort to obviate the disadvantage of high altitude and low payloads that would be the case if the effort is mounted from Tibet.

    It maybe noted that India is shifting base towards the NE for obvious reasons.

    The new extensions of the Tibetan rail link to the West to Hotan is not only to ensure a rapid build up opposite Ladakh, but also to move Xinjiang ores faster to hinterland China as also to rapidise the Han demographic changes desired to Sinicise the Uighur population.

    The rail link to Shiagtse is to ensure rapid build up towards Yadong Valley.
     
  6. JBH22

    JBH22 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Any idea if the mountain divisions got better gear?
     
  7. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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  8. Iamanidiot

    Iamanidiot Elite Member Elite Member

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    I thought Air Force is not of much use in the TAR
     
  9. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    The use of Air-Power is important for both sides,

    For PLAAF:

    Use of Air-power to archive Air-superiority by disabling Indian Airbases and Fighters on Ground..
    Use of Air-Power to destroy Indian Fortifications and help to speed up Infantry and Armour to archive key objectives.. ( TYPICAL BLITZKRIEGS STYLE )


    For IAF:

    Destruction of Key Enemy Supply routes in Tibet which disable PLA logistical chain hence stopping the Advance..
    Destruction of few PLA Airbases Over Tibet, So Air-superiority can be archived over Conflict zone..
    CAS for troops on Ground once Air - Superiority is archived..


    Conclusion:

    PLAAF objectives Over N.E are almost impossible considering its a IAF`s hornet nest and the range of PLAAF strike forces bases, IA & IAF have the most important advantage of having Nature on our side ( Geography of terrain is suitable for us ), Despite having mass no of Equipment PLA Cannot push them all together inside Indian terrain coz of few narrow Routes over mountain region..
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2011
  10. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    U will find this interesting.
    Date is 2009



    I think we all know abt our arty situation and Light tank progress, These two key elements are in need and they are delayed..


    Abt the alternatives we are in use for now, Is posted here:

     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2011
  11. JBH22

    JBH22 Senior Member Senior Member

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    @KUNAL thanks ...........
     
  12. sandeepdg

    sandeepdg Senior Member Senior Member

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    Neighbourhood - The PLAAF in Tibet
    By Air Marshal (Retd) Narayan Menon, Bangalore



    China’s military capability in and around Tibet Autonomous Region and its implications for the IAF

    Despite the high decibel rhetoric flowing from both sides on territorial claims and counterclaims, it is unlikely India and China will be involved in a shooting war in the near future as both countries concentrate on economic growth and domestic issues. The meeting between the Prime Ministers of the two countries in Thailand on October 24 has cooled the temperature somewhat. But, while China follows the “24 character strategy” propounded by Deng Xiao Ping, India would do well to remember General Sundarji’s wise words, “Being weak is not virtuous, being prepared is not provocative.”

    A 4,000 km long border between India and China remains unsettled due to historical reasons. After China assimilated Tibet into the Peoples’ Republic and India accepted this fact, many areas along the border remain disputed despite endless but fruitless joint meetings between the representatives of the two countries.

    Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) is the shrunken remains of a much larger Tibet. It is 1,222,000 sq km in area with Xingjiang Uyghur Autonomous region to its north. In its east are the provinces of Sichuan and Yunnan. In the south are Myanmar, India, Bhutan and Nepal. To its west lies more Indian territory. It has an average elevation of 4,900 m and the Tibetan Plateau is the highest region on earth. It is isolated by the Himalayan ranges to the south, Karakoram ranges to the west and Kunlun Mountains to the north. South TAR is situated entirely in the Himalayas with Mount Everest at 8,850 m being the highest peak. Kailash range, an offshoot of the Himalayas, branches off to the north and then runs parallel to the main chain. Between Kailash range and the main chain is a river valley that extends 1,000km. Brahmaputra river flows from west to east along a major part of this valley. The Ganges, Indus and Sutlej rivers have their headwaters in Western Tibet, while those of Mekong, Yangtze and Huang Ho (Yellow River) rivers are in Northern Tibet.

    TAR is divided into seven Prefectures with capital Lhasa being a City Prefecture. There are 2.7 million Tibetans in TAR and an additional 2.7 million in adjacent areas. In contrast, the Chinese Han population is estimated at 7.2 million. The ratio of Tibetans to Han in the cities of TAR is 1:3, while the Tibetans are the majority in rural areas. There is simmering discontent among the Tibetans about this creeping ‘Sinocisation’ of TAR through Han migration and economic marginalisation of the native population.

    Chinese Presence & Power

    China has constructed 14 major airbases in the Tibetan Plateau and there are about 20 airstrips like those in Arunachal Pradesh. China’s People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) has established bases at Hoping, Pangta, Shiquanhe, Bayixincun (in Central Tibet opposite Arunachal Pradesh) and Kong Ka. There are two airfields at Lhasa, airfields at Shannan, Xigaze and an additional four in the sector which can be made operational quickly. Many have runways of 4,000 m length. A major airfield has been constructed at Nyingtri at Linzhi in SE TAR. Lhasa is connected to Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chongqing, Xian and Xinin by domestic flights. There are a few international flights also. Most airfields can accommodate operations by civil aircraft of the Boeing 767 and Airbus 340 class. China has the capability to transfer 12 divisions in 30 days into the TAR from other regions.

    Beijing’s vastly improved heavy lift capability over long distances was demonstrated during the Exercise Stride-2009. In this largest ever tactical exercise conducted by Chinese armed forces, 50,000 troops were moved from five provinces in 13 days to North East China. Troops opposite Taiwan or those in Beijing Province were not deployed. Chengdu province opposite India did not participate in the exercise. PLAAF aircraft and requisitioned civil airliners were employed for this massive airlift. Rail transportation was also used to move heavy weapons on flat bed trailers with troops travelling in passenger coaches. Those participating in Stride-2009 included People’s Liberation Army (PLA) infantry, PLAAF, Special Operations Units, army aviation troops, electronic warfare companies, photo reconnaissance units, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle groups, and short wave interference stations. China’s indigenous satellite navigation and positioning system, BEIDOU, was utilised for communications during the exercise to maintain confidentiality and more importantly, to avoid dependence on foreign systems.

    While Tibet was not activated during Stride-2009, a message was conveyed to China’s neighbours and the rest of the world that Beijing has the capability to move large military formations in compressed time periods. The rail line from Golmud in Qinghai to Lhasa, completed in 2006, adds a new dimension to China’s build-up in TAR. This 1,142 km long rail line, laid over permafrost, connects Lhasa to Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou and Xining. The over 4,000 km run from Lhasa to Beijing is covered in about 48 hours. China has plans to build 13,000 km of high speed rail tracks by 2012. Of this, 185 km has been completed. These tracks are compatible with trains running at speeds in the region of 350 kmph. The tracks over permafrost can accept speeds of up to 120 kmph. There is the danger of climate change processes affecting the longevity of the tracks laid on permafrost and these are also vulnerable to heat creating munitions.

    China has plans to extend the rail network up to the Tibetan town of Dromo, which is near Nathu La and Sikkim. China is deploying ICBMs DF-31 and DF-31A at Delingha which lies north of Tibet and these can target the entire Indian sub-continent. The Karakoram Highway is to be widened to 30 m from the present 10 m to permit heavy vehicles to negotiate this route. While ostensibly for augmenting the carrying capacity from Karachi port into China, the military implications are obvious.

    http://spsaviation.net/story_issue.asp?Article=379
     
  13. sesha_maruthi27

    sesha_maruthi27 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Well we too have started upgrading our Air-Bases along the chinese borders and already Su-30 MKI's have been landed at the Noth-eastern base.
     
  14. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Mr Midget Antony so what are you doing about it ?
     
  15. sesha_maruthi27

    sesha_maruthi27 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Mr.Antony is thinking about what to think to counter the chinese strategy and also he is thinking to upgrade the air-bases. He just keeps on thinking about what he thinks to do. There is a lot of thinking done by our babus and no action or implementation of the action takes place. They just say that they are going to do this and that. By the time they do anything the enemy will have reached our capital, but still they say that our enemies are being given a strong defence by our soldiers. This is what happend in the year 1962 and this is going to happen in the future too, if the present GoI persists the slow upgradation process of our DEFENCE FORCES.
     
  16. sandeepdg

    sandeepdg Senior Member Senior Member

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    Not much, other than freaking out and pissing in his lungi. :)
     
  17. JBH22

    JBH22 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Whining,speaking in a totally incomprehensible language and playing the usual blame game.
     

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