India boosts 'strategic presence' along Chinese border

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by Rage, May 18, 2009.

  1. Rage

    Rage DFI TEAM Stars and Ambassadors

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    India boosts 'strategic presence' along Chinese border

    First Published: 01:16 IST(7/5/2009)
    Last Updated: 01:19 IST(7/5/2009)

    Arun Joshi, Hindustan Times
    Jammu, May 07, 2009


    India is strengthening its strategic depth and presence along the Chinese border in the Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir. The purpose is to maintain vigil over the Chinese road from Lhasa to Xinjiang in the Tibetan Autonomous Region. The road passes through the strategic mountainous area of Aksai Chin.

    The construction of Indian roads in the region is a follow-up action after the country reactivated its two strategically important airfields in May and November last year after more than four decades.

    The idea is to build India’s “strategic presence” there as new global realities and challenges are emerging on the borders, said an Army officer on condition of anonymity.

    These roads will connect Daulat Beg Oldie and Fukche air fields which were reactivated on May 31 and November 4, 2008, for the first time after the Sino-Indian war of 1962.

    “The roads are being constructed from both the eastern and western flanks,” confirmed minister of tourism Nawang Rigzin Jora, who represents Leh constituency in the J&K Assembly. He said the work is in progress.

    While the minister did not reveal much about the reasons for these roads, the army officer recalled: “We had lost Aksai Chin because of our absence there. But now we have realised that the presence in all the fields is required with the twin objective to strengthen ourselves strategically and make our presence felt there. We can also keep tabs on the Chinese activities in the Aksai Chin region.”

    The argument for building roads is that there cannot be a permanent dependence on the air presence, though there are plans to land fighter planes. The AN-32 and medium sized transport plane IL-76 have already landed there.

    The Indian Air Force’s (IAF) fixed-wing aircraft (AN-32) landed at Daulat Beg Oldie (DBO). Following this, IL-76 planes made sorties over the region and landed in the airfield.

    The Advanced Landing Ground (ALG), where the aircraft landed at DBO, has an unpaved surface and is located in the Aksai Chin area at a height of 16,200 feet near the strategic Karakoram Pass, very close to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China.

    DBO is an important army forward area post linking the ancient silk route to China. This base was built during the India-China conflict in 1962. Packet aircraft of the IAF operated from DBO between 1962 and 1965. In 1996, an earthquake caused some loosening of the surface soil, making this base unfit for further fixed-wing aircraft operations. But now everything has been repaired and the airfield is functional.


    India boosts 'strategic presence' along Chinese border- Hindustan Times
     
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  3. SATISH

    SATISH DFI Technocrat Stars and Ambassadors

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    ALG and FOB are the most impotant operational pillars during a short wars. these can make huge dents in advancing enemy if the enemy is offensive. and punch holes in the enemy's defensive formations.
     
  4. NikSha

    NikSha Regular Member

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    Did that anonymous officer just managed to reveal what India plans to do their making enemy's job a bit easier?

    "Oh yeah, we are doing all this to keep an eye on this specific location. I am just mentioning it. I am sure China will never try to just avoid taking the routes I am mentioning."


    Yeah yeah, I know it's all more complicated than that, but seriously, anonymously babbling about what army wants to do in such regions is retarded and should be punishable.
     
  5. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    What's the big deal if we announce roads near the border? What will that change? We know how many roads the Chinese have built on their side of the border.
     
  6. hit&run

    hit&run Elite Member Elite Member

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    Now India has declared Arunachal Pardesh as safe; As India is ready to aid U.S. on WWII crash recovery

    U.S. military officials are in talks with Indian officials in New Delhi to arrange for the recovery of Army Air Forces bombers which crashed in areas previously deemed unsafe.

    Clayton Kuhles, an independent researcher, has identified crash sites in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, which shares borders with China and Burma.

    “The Indian government previously could not guarantee or was not willing to guarantee our safety, because of unrest in the area” related to border disputes, said Army Maj. Brian DeSantis, a spokesman for the Joint POW/MIA Accountability Command headquartered in Hawaii. JPAC is the group which investigates and recovers U.S. service members from foreign territory.

    The situation changed in January, when JPAC Commander Rear Adm. Donna L. Crisp attended a meeting of the Indo-U.S. Defense Policy Group in Washington, D.C. There Crisp laid out a plan to discuss how recovery efforts in Arunachal Pradesh might proceed, leading to the current talks in New Delhi.

    The news is music to the ears of Gary Zaetz, the nephew of 1st Lt. Irwin Zaetz, who was a crewmember on a B-24 bomber that went down in Arunachal Pradesh in 1944. Kuhles recently found the crash site of that plane, as detailed on his Web site, MIA Recoveries : Locate and Document Missing WWII Aircraft and Pilots.

    “Adm. Crisp’s visit really represents a major leap forward in our efforts, and we’re very grateful to JPAC and (the Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office) for accomplishing this,” Zaetz said.

    Zaetz said JPAC officials told him recovery efforts could begin as soon as this month, but are more likely to commence in March 2009.

    The Army Air Forces lost 460 aircraft and 792 men during the aerial resupply of China from India from 1942-45. Airlifters flew a treacherous route over the Himalayas, known as “the Hump,” resulting in numerous crashes in remote areas of India, Burma and China. Many of those lost aircrews are still listed as missing. Though Kuhles has identified some crash sites, JPAC can not investigate without clearance and protection from the host nation’s government.

    Indian government officials “believe that it may now be safe to go into some of these places that may contain crash sites with missing service members from World War II,” DeSantis said. The talks will continue through Friday, he said
     

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