When India almost went to war with Pakistan

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by LETHALFORCE, Nov 3, 2011.

  1. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    When India almost went to war with Pakistan : Inside Story

    Political scientist and former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice in her memoir “No Higher Honor” has shed light on behind the scenes action on three instances when India almost went to war with Pakistan. While the book is still to hit the Indian market, the released excerpts have triggered off a fresh debate on whether India was seriously contemplating to go to war with Pakistan after December 13, 2001 terrorist attack on Parliament and November 26, 2008 Mumbai massacre or New Delhi was just staging a haka for the international audience.

    According to the released excerpts, it was active diplomacy between Rice, then National security advisor to George W Bush, and her Indian counterpart Brajesh Mishra that actually helped defuse the India-Pakistan crisis post Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorist attack on Indian Parliament.

    Similarly, Rice also takes credit for lowering the temperatures in the sub-continent after then external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee threatened Pakistan with war after the dastardly 26/11 Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist attack on Mumbai.

    She brings out the confusion within the Bush administration after the Parliament attack as CIA believed that India was going to war with Pakistan while Pentagon under Donald Rumsfeld thought otherwise on the basis of satellite imagery of the western theatre.

    Rice, according to reports, also has talked about India moving its nuclear missiles to the western borders after the terrorist strike at Kaluchak army camp in Jammu on May 14, 2001.

    The Indian posture after these terror incidents has been subject of intense debates with Brajesh Mishra once telling me that New Delhi was ready to strike at least on two occasions after the Parliament attack. Many believe that Indian warmongering after December 13, 2001 was part of its so-called coercive diplomacy, which yielded good results initially and then outlived its utility.

    While we will have to wait for Mishra’s memoirs to find out what happened on Raisina Hill those days, it is certain that NDA leadership under Atal Behari Vajpayee had given a green signal to Indian military to strike at Pakistan in December 2001 and then again in May 2001 but the military brass failed to deliver.

    Post 26/11 attack, the Indian mood was ugly but there was no plan on the table to attack Pakistan or Lashkar headquarters at Muridke, Lahore even though Mukherjee read the riot act to Islamabad. When Air Chief Marshal Fali Homi Major talked about a missile strike or air strike on Pakistan post 26/11 at a Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) meeting, he was dismissed as being too emotional. However, the Indian posture post Parliament attack was really angry and meant business. Two days after the Parliament attack, the CCS under Vajpayee ordered full scale mobilisation of forces on the western borders. The window for limited war in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) was last week of December but the military took its own sweet time to mobilise and was just about prepared to go across by December 28, 2001.

    International diplomacy had taken over the course by that time with US putting pressure on Pakistani dictator Pervez Musharaf to ban LeT and JeM groups, and also condemn jihadists based in Pakistan. With top diplomats like British Prime Minister Tony Blair, then US secretary of state Colin Powell and his deputy Richard Armitage making to and fro trips to New Delhi and Islamabad, the war opportunity was lost as the then home minister LK Advani was given a preview of Musharraf’s impending January 12, 2002 speech during his January 8 visit to Washington. Once the war moment was lost, Mishra and then foreign minister Jaswant Singh called it coercive diplomacy.

    With Indian troops deployed at the border as part of Operation Parakram, tensions flared up yet again after terrorist attacked Kaluchak army camp near Jammu on May 14, 2001 leaving 31 dead including 18 family members of Indian Army personnel in the camp. The attack was gory and brutal with terrorists killing children of Indian Army personnel and shooting the women in their private parts at the camp.

    The CCS met yet again on May 18, 2002 and gave a nod for strike to the military, which was seething with revenge. This time again the Indian Air Force delayed the proceedings as it ran short of laser guided ammunition and night vision pods. New Delhi gave a SOS to Tel Aviv, which sent three C-130 J Hercules full of laser guided bombs and pods on June 5, 2002 at Palam airport with Israeli Director General (Defence) Amos Yaron on board. But a fortnight delay was too much for the international community to let go.

    Musharraf was yet again hauled by the scruff of his neck by Armitage and the dictator again made a public statement on May 27, 2002 stating that he would not allow Pakistani territory to be used for terror attacks against India. While Mishra did meet Atomic Energy Commission officials at Kudankulam on May 24, there was no evidence of Indians mating nuclear warheads on their missiles or even moving them towards border.

    It is quite evident now from Rice’s book excerpts that Mishra decided to get maximum diplomatic mileage out of Kaluchak as he knew that Indian war plans were not coming to fruition. The fact is that American diplomacy worked post Parliament attack as Indian military and not political leadership faltered. Rice’s memoirs would have been different and so would have been history had Indian war plans worked out.
     
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  3. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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    Two cases where both NDA and UPA went soft.

    You can sugar coat and twist facts or make up excuses all you like because at the end of the day both didn't strike hard.

    I have and will always maintain that both are inept when it comes to war.
     
  4. W.G.Ewald

    W.G.Ewald Defence Professionals/ DFI member of 2 Defence Professionals

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    It's achieving something when you can become more psychopathic that the IRA boyos.
     
  5. Phenom

    Phenom Regular Member

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    What are they referring to, How exactly did the military failed to deliver?

    This is a good example of how our leadership thinks. Saying we should strike back at Pakistan after being attacked is considered too emotional by those in power.
     
  6. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Mobilization took too long and that's what can be called as failure by IA. The rectification of that is Cold Start. But post 26/11, the govt chose dossiers over bombs.
     
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  7. Sridhar

    Sridhar House keeper Moderator

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    [TABLE="width: 970, align: center"]
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    [TD]A peep into the aftermath of 26/11 attacks provides an insight into the state of things. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh met the three defence service chiefs on 29 September 2008, three days after the daring terrorist attack commenced, when Indian intelligence had concluded that the Pakistan Army was behind the massacre. Intriguingly, the three chiefs who walked into the Prime Minister Office had not confabulated amongst themselves either formally in the Chiefs of[/TD]
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    [TD]Staff Committee, or informally to exchange notes. So, three different suggestions were given to the Prime Minster. The air force chief favoured a punitive strike in the form of an air raid; the army chief felt that this would escalate matters leading to a full scale war; while the navy chief refrained from commenting on what would be a series of air-land battles. The meeting concluded with the Prime Minister mumbling that forces be prepared for war; this strangely was the only meeting he had with his service chiefs on 26/11. After a good 10 days, when in any case it was obvious, the National Security Advisor, M.K. Narayanan informed the chiefs that India would not go to war with Pakistan.

    This is how the nuclear-armed India suffered the wrath of audacious aggression. A service chief later told FORCE that there was a requirement for regular interaction between the Prime Minister and the service chiefs. According to him,unless compelled by domestic public opinion, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will desist from going to war[/TD]
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    [TD]as it would jeopardise the nation’s happy economic growth story. The chief, however, underplayed the need for more purple opinion amongst the three services; the olive green, blue and white uniforms need to see more of the others’ perspectives. Given these serious shortcomings in India’s national security, it is little wonder that the three services have their own doctrines and capability-building plans to prepare for a war that will not go according to the last script. The geopolitical imperatives and the nature of war have changed.[/TD]
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    http://forceindia.net/OctCoverstory1.aspx
     
  8. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    indira gandhi definitely had it within her to go to war , and so did shastri . so i think , did rajiv gandhi too. otherwise the rest are not capable , even the ' nationalistic ' BJP .
     
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  9. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    precisely how it was.

    '01 and '08 are difficult to be equated. when the time is against you, you cant do much, especially when the internationally community steps in a big way, which is what happened in '01, and if my memory serves me well, in '01 the international community and domestic audience weren't as supportive of pakistan terror camp bombing but '08 was a different ball game altogether.

    the real missed opportunity was '08, there was complete domestic and international community backing. if i correctly recall, bush went on record to suggest that it was india's call to strike terror camps in pakistan after '08, and that is when we should have called everyone's bluff right away, and ironically that wont be the last missed opportunity because the excuse of armed forces not adequately prepared will linger on forever, its how our politicians play around with the national security. recall how this sentiment was quickly spread through the media in '08.
     
  10. sesha_maruthi27

    sesha_maruthi27 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Well it was the Army on the first occasion which took time to mobilize troops and it was the IAF on the second occasion who told they have less number of laser guided missiles. It was not the NDA who stepped back, it was the Army and IAF who took time to get things worked and by the time they did their job the international community had played their role in defusing the tensions. I don't blame NDA or UPA and it was the begging attitude of pakistan which saved it from being destroyed completely.
     
  11. sesha_maruthi27

    sesha_maruthi27 Senior Member Senior Member

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    On both occasions the America played a spoil sport to make the INDIANS calm down. But if another attack of this kind takes place, then no one except GOD can save pakistan from being completely destroyed and I think this will happen soon and it will be the Americans who will attack pakistan with INDIA in the backdrop.
     
  12. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    well another attack on the level of 26/11 is not going to happen .
     
  13. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    What a stupid stupid comment
     
  14. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    So who is fault Americans or Indians?

    Americans didnt do anything, Indians played spoilsport by agreeing to the American wishes.

    Reality is we didnt want war, if we did. we would not have listened to anyone.

    Stop talking nonsense. Indians cannot do jack shit to Pakistani's without the capacity to take hits.
     
  15. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    ^^ whats was stupid in it. pakis and its army wallas are not stupid to carry out 26/11 level attacks in future where there contribution gets caught. they are going to use brainwashed indians for their jobs.like IM carrying out bombs in different cities
     
  16. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    Isnt that what people said about Parliament attack, that Pakistan will never do it again,

    You assume every organization in Pakistan has a central control, some do and some dont.

    Pakistan will do it again, and again. Pakistani's know the Indian threshold quite clearly by now. They are also not the same enemy pre-2005.
     
  17. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    The oft repeated line about war taking the economy back decades would not arise if India had a good domestic military industrial complex. Wars are always good for economies. The world wars made the US what it is today.
     
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