India-China Comparison on Military Strength "foolhardy" Says Naval Chief.

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by pyromaniac, Aug 15, 2009.

  1. pyromaniac

    pyromaniac Founding Member

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    "If you wish to be secure on land, you should have supremacy on the sea", said Jawaharlal Nehru, the architect of modern India. It was China who was listening to Nehru, rather than India and they built a Navy far superior to any other power in the Indian ocean. Incidentally, during his last days in 1962, China handed him a humiliating defeat in a war between unequals in NEFA and Tibet. At that time, India was no match for the mighty Chinese army. This was no secret.

    Today, India's Naval Chief Mehtha, sounded a real warning. He said it is foolhardy to say India is equal to China militarily. India is no match for China whether it is airforce, navy or army. China is four times bigger than India. The Navy Chief said India's weakest link is the Indian navy. He said India is surrounded by China. It has six bases in the Indian Ocean, one in Chittagong, one in Yangon, Coco Island in Burma, Trincomalee in Srilanka and one in Waga in Pakistan, to India's none.

    Navy Chief Mehtha, who is leaving office in two weeks, spoke his mind about India's chances of fighting a war with China. Chinese presence in the Indian Ocean is a reality with six bases to support them. The recent visit of Chinese naval ships to Cochin port, was a clear indication that they are everywhere in the Indian ocean. The Indian navy on the other hand was hardly seen in Chinese waters in the recent past.

    Comparisons between India and China would reveal that India is nowhere near China's strength. China has 68 submarines to India's 16, none of them being nuclear. China has 56 airforce squadrons to India's 12. China has 4 million troops to India's 1.5 million troops. China has 14000 Artillery guns to India's 4000. These are only some examples to show that India is no match for China.

    China is jealous of India's economic growth and a real challenge to its supremacy in Asia. It is in China's interest that it is planning to destabilise India. The recent article of Dragon's plan to split India in 26 created a furore in political circles. Whether it was real or imaginary, the writing is clearly on the wall, that China is harbouring extra-territorial ambitions.

    China wants to establish its supremacy in the Indian ocean. With the waters unapproachable to US, UK and France, with no presence of their naval battleships, nor Russia. China rules supreme in the region. India is virtually surrounded by China. The prophecy coming from none other than India's Naval Chief, is that one day, China will crush India militarily, if no action is taken to build up in the Indian ocean.

    There is no doubt that both India and China are nuclear countries. When a war breaks out, it would be catastrophic for either to use nuclear weapons. China has a vast mass of land and population, which is almost two times the size of India. Nuclear war is therefore ruled out.

    It requires political wisdom to see reality. The Navy Chief was candid enough to reveal the truth to the establishment that they should not sleep over the matter. The threat from China is real and it is coming. There is a talk of China attacking India in 2012, which is not far off. The question is whether India will be prepared.

    With this warning from the Navy Chief, it is time to take stock of the situation and work on strengthening the airforce, navy and army. It is not time for an arms race, but to secure our borders, as we are surrounded by China. Perhaps, this revelation as echoed by other naval ex-chiefs, would be an eye opener to the government to move with caution in their relationship with China.

    It is not that India is more vulnerable than China. China too has its own problems. The ethnic unrest in China's mineral rich Xiang Province, Buddishts in Tibet and elsewhere, it may destabilise itself, if these groups wage an armed struggle. The problem is there is no solid support from outside to these rebels as the insurgents or Maoists get in India.

    It is also difficult to count on Russia as our past experience has shown that in 1962 Russia did little in the wake of the Chinese attack. Besides, India has moved closeer to the US, a departure from its Russia leaning policy of the past. Russia with its own internal shortcomings and problems, economically is not sound enough to enter into a war for the sake of India. India therefore has to take care of its own needs, not depend on others for help.

    When George Fernadez, the then Defence Minister said India's Enemy No.1 was China and not Pakistan, there was a hue and cry both in India and China. There was hectic diplomatic activity to clarify India's position with China. Today, George Fernandez is proved right. It is indeed China, which is India's no.1 enemy, threatening to wage a war and destabilise India to gain supremacy in Asia both on the economic front and militarily as well.

    It is time for serious thinking and action. I Hope the UPA government takes the Dragon warning seriously and acts in consultation with the chiefs of the army, airforce and navy to counter the balance of power in the region. As of today, the military balance of power is certainly in China's favor. India has to match them. There is no need for despondency, as India is capable of defending itself without any outside support. India has to reorient its China policy in the wake of the real threat from that country.

    China Trying to Destablize India
     
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  3. badguy2000

    badguy2000 Respected Member Senior Member

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    yeas, india navy is now asking for more money!
     
  4. badguy2000

    badguy2000 Respected Member Senior Member

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    it is not important at all how many weapons PLA now is armed.

    the most important is how many weapons chinese defence industry can provide after wars break out.

    USA's arm force was smaller and weaker than Poland's before WW II. but after war broke out, USA powerful industry armed the troops UK,SOviets, USA and China at the same time.
     
  5. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    What an uneducated author. Passes off low quality research and lies as facts and does analysis based on them. At one place, he says China is 4 times the size of India, but China in reality is thrice India's land mass with almost the same population. At another place, he says China is "almost twice" India's size. At a third place, he refers to unrest in China's "Xiang" province.

    What an utter fool. :rolleyes:
     
  6. pyromaniac

    pyromaniac Founding Member

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    You can nitpick the article all you like but the very scary reality is when it comes to comparing military forces, India is being eclipsed by China...heck I can even argue that we are not even in the same league anymore. Everything in India is a battle against the hill so to speak..nothing is done without unneeded bureaucratic delays and kickbacks. A simple thing as ordering jet trainers takes 20years, ordering fighters takes 10 years... the simple fact is that India cannot compete with China until our politicians WAKE up and for once think about the country instead of their bank accounts.
     
  7. Officer of Engineers

    Officer of Engineers Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    Pyromaniac,

    Two words - local superiority. Think about it.
     
  8. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    Hey, I'm not disputing that large gap between Indian and Chinese capabilities, but it's not like there's going to be a massive full fledged war between the two soon over Arunachal Pradesh, is there? And even if that war did take place, is China going to haul those 14000 artillery pieces for a duel in the Himalayas? What use are those 68 submarines for a war in the Himalayas? Or the huge advantage in tanks?

    It is said that India and China coexisted peacefully side by side for 5000 years. Well, that's because fighting a war across the Himalayas is almost impossible! And that basic geographical fact has not changed till now. So I don't think we need to worry too much about a full fledged war with China. There might be border skirmishes and a local conflict like the one in 1962, but nothing more.
     
  9. pyromaniac

    pyromaniac Founding Member

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    While the Chinese sure as hell wont roll into town with 14,000 artillery pieces the fact of the matter is that both logistically and numerically the Chinese have a ridiculously large and it seems ever expanding advantage over the Indian armed forces. Now granted that the Chinese don't have Subs that can roll on land, they can be used to blockade our ports very effectively. Thats all a part of lightning war....subdue your enemy with overwhelming force and the Chinese have the capability and the numbers to do so.
     
  10. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    Pyro, if numbers were everything, Vietnam would be the most feared nation on earth considering it has 9.6 million total troops including paramilitary. Greater than even China. :D

    Although you do have a point about the subs, I don't think there will be a Chinese blockade of Indian ports. Most of those subs are very old and could probably be vulnerable to Indian ASW assets. However, India does need to massively upgrade its number and quality of submarines if it is to avoid suffering an embarrassment in a full fledged war with Pak or China.
     
  11. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The Admiral was not terribly wrong statistically speaking.

    It was also a wake up call for the Indian Nation and most importantly, the fool politicians, who are more keen to fight turf battles and name national schemes after the Nehru Gandhi family.

    Blockading ports of India is not that easy as it may appear. One must also check the Indian coastline and number of ports that India has.

    Further, it is not that the Chinese will have a free run of the seas. There will be quite a few navies milling around who are not too keen on the Chinese gaining supremacy anywhere and of course, there is the choke point - the Straits of Malacca!
     
  12. pyromaniac

    pyromaniac Founding Member

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    yea but we are talking about a possible conflict in the future aren't we? Around 2012 or so..and its also worth noting that Pakistan would play a part in any conflict..they are always eager to get back at India for whooping their butts in pretty much every conflict we have had with them :)

    The fact of the matter is that China is building their army around quick surgical strikes and I am just pointing out the fact that the Chinese are better equipped and prepped for such a war.
     
  13. Officer of Engineers

    Officer of Engineers Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    The PLA stated goal is the year 2049.

    The PLA is Taiwan centric with an eye towards North Korea. India rates an extremely distant 3rd.
     
  14. Flint

    Flint Senior Member Senior Member

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    No more China vs India comparison on anything OTHER than military strength, as indicated in the thread title.
     
  15. advaita

    advaita Regular Member

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    From which side did the Nazis make there first move against the French in the WW-2.

    Pls dont fwd the logic that warfare in mountains is not possible merely because you had a difficult time scaling the hillock in your backyard.
     
  16. sayareakd

    sayareakd Moderator Moderator

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    Question here is what happens if chines goes to war with India and they use these bases....... then can they be target of our counter attack ???
     
  17. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    In Hot Waters

    In Hot Waters

    Far from being defeatist, the Chief of the Naval Staff has tried to impart a sense of balance to the national debate on Sino-Indian relations and their impact on our national security
    B. RAMAN ON SUREESH MEHTA

    Admiral Sureesh Mehta, who will shortly be retiring as our Chief of the Naval Staff (CONS), made a presentation on "India's National Security Challenges--An Armed Forces Overview" at the National Maritime Foundation at New Delhi on August 10, 2009.

    During his tenure as the CONS, Admiral Mehta initiated a number of welcome changes in the policies and planning of the Indian Navy keeping in view the changed national and regional security requirements. Among the laudable steps initiated by him one could mention the Look West projection which he gave to the Navy to correct the over-focus on the Look East projection, the bringing together of the Naval chiefs of the Indian Ocean powers in an exercise to promote a convergence of views and action for strengthening the mutual security of the Indian Ocean powers facing common new threats from non- State actors such as maritime terrorists and pirates and removing deficiencies in our coastal counter-terrorism capabilities.

    Admiral Mehta's talk at the National Maritime Foundation was a lucid and frank exposition of the present and future challenges to our national security as seen by him. A summary of his presentation is available on the website of The Hindu. Unfortunately, some sections of the media have tried to misinterpret his remarks on India and China and project them as if the CONS was defeatist in his analysis of the respective capabilities of the Armed Forces of the two countries and particularly their naval capabilities. Far from it.

    A careful reading of his remarks would indicate that he has tried to impart a sense of balance to the national debate on Sino-Indian relations and their impact on our national security. The salient points in his presentation are:
    The trust deficit between India and China will persist till the border dispute is settled.
    Cooperation rather than competition or conflict with China was preferable since it would be “foolhardy” to compare India and China as equals in terms of economy, infrastructure and military spending.
    A military conflict would have grave consequences on the economic front for both nations and therefore it would be in the interest of both the countries to cooperate with each other in mutually beneficial endeavours and ensure that the potential for conflict is minimised.
    Both in conventional and non-conventional military terms, India neither has the capability nor the intention to match China force for force.
    Since India carried out its nuclear tests in 1998, there has been a national debate on what should be the ultimate objective of our military modernisation--the ability to compete with China in power projection in the region or the ability to deter an external threat to our security and to defend ourselves and our territory if a threat materialises in spite of the deterrent capability built up by us or because of its inadequacy?

    The importance of competitive power projection with China was the dominating theme of the debate in our security circles till about four years ago. The Government of Dr Manmohan Singh has sought to change the priority from power projection to our capability for deterrence and self-defence. Once the validity of the changed priorities is accepted, there is no need for us to match China force for force.

    India should avoid a policy of military confrontation with China and, at the same time, should develop the capability to defend ourselves and our territory should a confrontation be forced upon us. In the undesirable eventuality of such a confrontation, the military conflict, which will be of limited duration, will be in the mountainous region of the Himalayas and not on the seas. Our ability to repel any attacks and protect our territory along the Chinese border and our citizens living there will depend on the capabilities which we give to the Army and the Air Force more than the naval capability. It will also depend on the state of our infrastructure and our intelligence community, which is presently well-focused on Pakistan and not so well-focused on China.

    Till four years ago, in our over-fascination for power projection through the Navy, we failed to pay adequate attention to strengthening the capabilities of the Army and the Air Force to fight in the Himalayan areas and to developing a modern infrastructure without which even the best of Armies will feel handicapped in battle. It will not be an exaggeration to say that the vital Arunachal Pradesh region, so frequently and so vehemently claimed by China as its territory, was in a state of benign neglect with little attention paid to its economic development and military-related infrastructure. So long as this state of neglect of the Arunachal Pradesh region by us continued, China was happy and missed no opportunity to praise India and even made a seeming gesture by giving up its claim to Sikkim. It carefully monitored the strengthening of our Navy and its power projection in the seas to the East of India, but it did not show signs of any undue concern over it.

    The Chinese attitude changed from positive to negative after the Government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh--in a welcome and long over-due change of policy-- decided four years ago to shift our priorities from naval power projection overseas to strengthening the capability of the Army and the Air Force for deterrence and self-defence in the areas along the Sino-Indian border. A hostile attitude to India in sections of the Government and party controlled media and in some academic circles became evident after India gave up its policy of neglect of the Arunachal Pradesh area by undertaking a crash programme for the development of the infrastructure and by paying more attention to the views and requirements of the Army and the Air Force in that area such as by placing two more mountain divisions at the disposal of the Army, by improving local airfields and by enabling the Air Force to deploy a squadron or more in the area. The objective of the virulent Chinese campaign against India on the issue of Arunachal Pradesh is to intimidate the Indian political leadersdhip into giving up the new priorities. It is important that we do not let ourselves be intimidated.

    It is important for our policy-makers to take note of some of the themes of the debate going on since June,2009, in Chinese non-governmental circles-- India as a paper tiger, the blunder supposedly committed by the Chinese in withdrawing after occupying large parts of the Indian territory in the Arunachal Pradesh area in 1962, the importance of not repeating this blunder in the event of another military conflict, no bartering of territorial sovereignty for friendship, the advantages enjoyed by the Chinese society because of its supposedly homogenous character as against the allegedly fissiparous tendencies in the Indian society etc.

    As a result of the difficulties faced by the Chinese in Tibet and Xinjiang, the Chinese are feeling increasingly insecure about their hold on these areas. As a result, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) is increasingly in the seat of decision and policy-making in these two areas as also with respect to the border dispute. Even in the unlikely event of the Chinese political leadership wanting to dilute its claims to Indian territory in the over-all interest of the economic ties between the two countries and the stability of their economies, it is doubtful whether the Chinese military leadership will accept any compromise which falls short of Chinese demands.

    Against this background, even if India does not want a military confrontation, the Chinese may be prompted to force a confrontation in two scenarios:

    Scenario I: If the Chinese military leadership concludes that the strengthening of India's military position in Arunachal Pradesh has reached a stage beyond which it should not be allowed to go lest lt come in the way of the materialisation of the Chinese designs.

    Scenario II: If there is serious instability in Tibet after His Holiness the Dalai Lama due to the opposition of the Tibetans to Beijing's attempts to impose on them a successor to His Holines chosen by the Party.

    Admiral Mehta is right in saying that the two countries should explore ways of minimising the potential for a military conflict. Avoiding a military conflict by strengthening the present relations and economic ties between the two countries should be important, but avoiding a military conflict should not mean not preparing ourselves to meet successfully a military conflict if our attempts to avoid it fail. For that, it is important for us to continue to strengthen our military capabilities in the Himalayan region in order to make any military conflict an unattractive option for the Chinese. We must examine what kind of armed forces and comprehensive national strength we would need for this objective and relentlessly go ahead in creating the required capabilities.

    What should be the role of the Navy in such a contingency and what kind of capability it should have? This is a question which needs careful examination and follow-up action. Any naval plans should have at least two objectives-- to protect our energy supplies and to make it prohibitively costly for Pakistan to indulge in any adventurist actions against us by taking advantage of our preoccupation with China.

    Admiral Mehta is again right in pointing out that we have lagged behind China in modernising our Armed Forces. This neglect has to be corrected. What is required is not competitive modernisation to meet force for force, but modernisation in the Indian perspective to meet Indian needs for deterrence and self-defence.

    B. Raman is Additional Secretary (retd), Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India, New Delhi, and, presently, Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai. He is also associated with the Chennai Centre For China Studies.
     
  18. Officer of Engineers

    Officer of Engineers Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    Warships can stay for a period of 24 hours before the crews and ship are to be arrested. Merchant ships can stay as long as they want provided that they took no part in any military actions.

    India has the legal right to wait and intercept both warships and merchants in international waters. In the case of merchant ships, you can confiscate the cargo and ships destined for China.

    However, the country which the merchant ship is flagged, ie they maybe American, British, or Russian, has the right to view that as an Act of War.

    That's the legal issues.

    The real issue is the military one. The Chinese sent a 3 ship task force to Somalia and one of them is a replenishment ship. If the InN can't handle a 3 ship task force, then attacking neutral ports certainly is a ludicrous option.
     
  19. Flint

    Flint Senior Member Senior Member

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    Finally a sane article, after all the hyperbolic trash we've been reading for the last few days.
     
  20. roma

    roma NRI in Europe Senior Member

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    needs a title to reply in a thread ??

    i thnk the war here is beetween pyro and known unknown but i thnk pyro is simply acknowledging the admiorals warning to the nation that things cannot continue as today ..... as pyro correctly imho pointedf out, to do simple things takes unduly long , full of unexpected beaurocracy and maybe even kickbacks , none of which are part of the china system .....indeed just yesteray or so china fired its procurement chief for corruption .....great action taken at a v high level .....inc omparison the china system is much more streamline and i tihink the admiral found a need to point it out. i would therefrore agree with pyro that it's high time this came out and much more importatnly action needs be taken . Sorry captain known unknow i thinkk pyro is informed regardless of some typos about China being 4 times or 2 times ....those are incidental mistakes ....the point is one nation has a streamlined system the other is full of blockages and no prizes for guessing which is which
     
  21. Sabir

    Sabir DFI TEAM Senior Member

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    India vs China in Indian Ocean

    The naval bases in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Myanmar will help China to monitor its trade route and guarding it in peace time. But in a hostile situation with India which also has a capable navy it is doubtful how much help this naval bases could provide.

    [​IMG]

    !) The host countries (except Pakistan) may not allow China to operate from these bases if there is a war fearing punishing strikes from there most powerful neighbor.

    2) See the map…See the long Indian coasts. God gifted territorial advantages of India in Indian Ocean can not be subdued by 3-4 naval bases.
    3) What India has to do is strengthening its naval and arial capacity in Andaman and Nicobar to prevent China from a quick reinforcement by blocking Malacca strait.
    4) Beyond the limited capacity of present and proposed Indian Air-craft Carriers, most of the naval bases we are discussing are within the reach of Indian Air force from the land bases and Malacca strait too from Andaman. India will be in a better position to conduct ASW campaign against PLAN’s submarines too.This fact could be a major blow to China’s ambition to overwhelm Indian navy in its own den. (Remember India is not a very weak country in military aspect and India is also expanding and modernizing its naval and air power.

    5) The data provided about China’s naval inventory also include those junks which would not have any role in any conflict in Indian Ocean nor does China have huge qualitative superiority over Indian Navy to overcome all odds. The reality is not so scaring as it seems.

    Indian advantages in Indian Ocean is God gifted and China has to reach at least up to the level of US Navy (qualitatively too) to over power India in Indian Ocean.
     

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