Siachen Glacier : The Highest battleground on Earth

Discussion in 'Indian Army' started by A.V., Mar 11, 2009.

  1. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    He he he, I tried to find a link to the news about zero casualties that I had posted here 3-4 days ago. Guess what I found on google. Pakis trying to denounce it as a myth sometime after I made that post.

    They don't post here but they can't stop following us!
     
  2. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    Gentlemen,


    I expect better research and attitude from you, we are giving our boys the best and they are loving it. Ask anyone in the Indian Army wether they want to leave Siachin, even who lost friends there or are handicapped, they will never agree with you; why? Because WHEN WAR comes, and if we are not there as a force, then we will loose more of our boys, we are in siachin to save lives, our lives and kill more of them.


    http://ajaishukla.blogspot.in/2011/05/army-watches-as-siachen-dialogue.html?m=1
     
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  3. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    No we are not, Read and Read more. Please. Dont fall for Paki Propaganda.


    See, that dumb ----ing news piece, 7000 Indian soldiers, 4000 Pakistani soldiers in siachin, really? lol, while Pakistan has road access and we dont? It is the usual, 1 paki = 10 Indians, dont post this kind useless tripe in DFI, think before you post and read them well.
     
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  4. agentperry

    agentperry Senior Member Senior Member

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    the living conditions need to be improved, there is no way india can leave siachin.
    put more money into drdo for getting better gear for soldier but dont leave siachin
     
  5. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    That is in central kashmir not SIACHIN
     
  6. Vishwarupa

    Vishwarupa Senior Member Senior Member

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    We all know that Indian troops are in good position then why are we not thinking of taking whole of Siachin under Indian control.
     
  7. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    An article from 2008. Although, its not to do with an avalanche causalty but more to do with medical complications

    Still single digit casualty rate from a approx. 10000-15000 troop levels is very good.

    At Siachen, casualties come to all time low - Indian Express
    It is a sad day at the Siachen base camp. A soldier died at the Kaziranga post on the glacier two days ago and his body has still not been brought down due to bad weather and heavy snowfall. A Cheetah helicopter has been flying daily from base camp to the post, but has not been able to land and pick up the body.

    Despite a rigorous selection procedure and extensive medical examinations before the posting, the soldier suffered a heart attack. Another one, doctors say, of the unpredictables while serving at extreme altitudes.

    While days like these bring out the cost India is paying for maintaining troops at the highest battlefield in the world, casualty rates at the Siachen glacier have come down to an all time low.

    Casualties peaked to almost 70 per year during the 1999 Kargil war, but the rate has come down to single digit in the past two years. New equipment, better medical facilities, faster evacuations and the ceasefire agreement has brought down fatality rates in the glacier to about four a year.

    Till 2003, before the ceasefire agreement came into place, the Army was losing close to 30 soldiers on the glacier every year. The figure went down to 10 a year after the agreement. However, heavy snowfall and the 2006 earthquake raised the casualties to 26 that year.

    The past two years have, however, been stable. The Army lost four men on the glacier in 2007 — two cases of medical complications and two pilots who died in a helicopter crash on the LoC. This year, four soldiers have died on the glacier, again mainly due to medical complications.

    The main reason, officers say, is the good quality of clothing and special equipment procured in recent years to equip men on the glacier. Most of the clothing — jackets, gloves, sleeping bags — has improved over the past two years and is being imported from Italy, France and Austria.

    “We now have better medical facilities and equipment. Any case that looks bad is evacuated immediately. We don’t need to take any chances on the glacier anymore,” a medical officer says.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2012
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  8. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    We know its just not a decision from Military but Internal Politics and International Politics..

    Same goes for POK..
     
  9. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Why India cannot afford to give up Siachen

    The strategic advantage accruing to India in Siachen should not be given up for apparent short-term political gains. Giving up Siachen as a gesture of friendship would also mean that its recapture would be extremely expensive to India in men and material, says Vikram Sood.


    The venue: Badami Bagh, Srinagar [ Images ], Headquarters of the Corps Commander 15 Corps, Lt Gen Prem Hoon

    The year: 1983

    The participants: The Corps Commander and the R&AW station chief.

    The subject: Siachen and reported Pakistani activities in that region according to intelligence reports from across the LoC.

    It would be untrue to suggest that this meeting led to the assault on the Soltoro Ridge which is actually west of the Siachen Glacier, but the fact is that the matter had assumed serious proportions and Indira Gandhi's [ Images ] government was deeply concerned.

    The reports, that the Pakistanis were making probes ostensibly through tourism and mountaineering groups, were disturbing. The obvious aim of the Pakistanis appeared to be cross the Saltoro heights and head for the Karakoram Pass on the Jammu and Kashmir [ Images ] border with Tibet [ Images ] (China).

    But why is this bleak part of the mountainous region so important to India that we are prepared to retain it all these years. The Saltoro Ridge is a formidable ridge that runs roughly north-west to south-east. It overlooks Gilgit and Baltistan to its west and has to be crossed by any one seeking access from Skardu in the Gilgit and Baltistan area through to the Karakoram Pass which enters Tibet. This is not to be confused with the Karakoram Highway which enters Xinjiang through the Khunjerab Pass. Any Pakistani location in Karakoram would be a threat to India in Ladakh from the north in addition to Chinese locations in Aksai Chin.

    The genesis of the problem lies in the way India-Pakistan agreements were worked out in Karachi (1949) and Shimla (1972). The ceasefire line or later the Line of Control [ Images ] was left undemarcated from point NJ 9842, and stated that it would run north from this point. This means that north was defined as the true geographical north and not an extension of the line in the direction which would take the line to the Karakoram Pass, something the Pakistanis claimed, wanted and were willing to assert this claim with perhaps an approving Chinese nod. North of Point NJ 9842 meant north to the Siachen and not to Karakoram.

    Siachen in the possession of Pakistan would have meant Pakistan would have access from Skardu through to the Karakoram near the Aksai Chin and eventual linking with Shahidullah on the Kashgar-Xigatse road that runs parallel to the Tibet- India border.

    Obviously, and given the aggressive manner in which Pakistan had begun to interfere in India, among other things actively inciting Sikh extremists, India could not afford to become vulnerable on another front.

    There was no option but to launch Operation Meghdoot on April 13, 1984. The Kumaon Regiment of the Indian Army [ Images ] with cover from the Indian Air Force reached the glacier to occupy two mountain passes at Bilafond La and Sia La while the Pakistan Army [ Images ] could only reach Gyong La. The battle zone was a triangle with point NJ9842 at the bottom, Indira Col due west and Karakoram Pass due east. Indian troops today control two thirds of the area and the world's highest motorable road at Khardung La with a helipad at a place called Sonam, at 21,000 feet. Pakistan overlooks the Nubra and Shyok valleys from the north. Saltoro lies almost exactly due north of Leh and north west of Kargil [ Images ].

    The Saltoro was attained at considerable loss of life, equipment apart from the expenses involved. There were many lives also lost to the harsh climate and the attrition rate was indeed very high in the early days of the campaign. Over time these shortcomings have been removed, the attrition rate is much lower, logistics are nowhere near as nightmarish as they used to be nearly thirty years ago.

    Following the avalanche in Skardu which killed 150 Pakistani soldiers, there seems to be renewed talk that India should withdraw from the heights attained with so much sacrifice and at great cost to the nation. Siachen has recently been sneeringly described as 'A struggle of two bald men over a comb' or 'an ego problem between the two armies' and has elsewhere been described by some journalists as a futile war. Let it be said here that no war over one's own territory that is futile.

    It is certainly less futile than the US campaign in Iraq. The United States, unable to solve its own problems in the region or for that matter anywhere else, and seeking an early exit from Afghanistan by obliging Pakistan, has offered to assist India and Pakistan in a dialogue. There are reports that the two defence secretaries will meet shortly to discuss Siachen and Sir Creek.

    It seems that there is some great urgency to strike a deal and this is more than the usual periodic urge to concede something to Pakistan to look good. There are some Indian commentators who have even argued that India should now forget 26/11 and move forward. Nations that do not remember their past can have no future.

    One of the arguments being given is that the cost of retaining Siachen/Saltoro is prohibitive. This is rubbish. At approximately Rs two crores a day it means only Rs 730 crores annually out of a budget that is in the range of Rs 80,000 crores. Even if it were more than this, is there a fixed price for security and freedom? The loss of soldiers to harsh conditions has become minimal for the last many years and the hot war has long been over.

    An agreement might have been possible but Pakistani refusal to sign the Agreed Ground Position Line on a specious argument only leads to the suspicion that they would want to alter the position at first dawn. General Pervez Musharraf's [ Images ] Kargil adventure in 1999 was Pakistan's last attempt to change the ground position militarily and politically and also to negate the advantage of Saltoro with India.

    The continuing mindset is depicted not only in the rants of Lashkar-e-Tayiba [ Images ] chief Hafiz Saeed [ Images ] but also by what appears in the English press in Pakistan, which include songs in praise of The Hafiz. The Nation in an editorial on March 12 said "We must never lose sight of the fact that Kashmir is a left over issue of the Partition, gifted to us by the British. Unless it is settled in accordance with the Partition Plan, neither the division of India would be complete, nor would the state of Pakistan be complete."

    There has not been any evidence of a change of heart in the Pakistan Army -- the institution that calls the shots in Pakistan especially on issues relating to India. Everyone knows that. Thus withdrawal from these strategic heights without any iron clad guarantees that do not extend beyond declarations of intent would be the height of folly. This strategic advantage in Siachen should not be given up for apparent short-term political gains.

    The China factor cannot be ignored in this cockpit of the world. It was not so evident in 1984 although the Karakoram Highway had been built by the Chinese by then and Pakistan had illegally ceded a portion of the territory under their control, Shaksgam to them. Today, the Chinese footprint is much larger. In its own strategic interests in the region, China would be interested in greater Pakistani control over Gilgit and Baltistan.

    It has been investing $150 million (abour Rs 750 crore) for widening the KKH from 10 metres to 30 metres, to be used by all weather heavy vehicles, the kind that brought strategic material for Pakistan through the Khunjerab.

    A rail link was also planned, to be connected with Pakistan's main rail grid, and fiber optic cables were being laid in 2007. If China had a port in Gwadar that they could use, this would cut down the distance from Xinjiang to the Arabian Sea to merely 2,500 km. Today Xinjiang is 4,500 km away from the east coast of China. Gas and oil pipelines through from Gwadar and Xinjiang make sense only if Gilgit and Baltistan is secured. It is not a question of a glacier in the Himalayan heights; it is a question of India's security.

    The nation cannot afford to repeat the strategic mistakes of the past -- like halting our advance at Uri in 1948 or not capturing Skardu; or giving up Haji Pir in 1966; or returning 93,000 troops and territory in 1972.

    Giving up Siachen as a gesture of friendship would also mean that its recapture would be extremely expensive to India in men and material. Today, as the other side continues to arm itself with newer nuclear weapons, has not called off its jehadi hordes and the only 'concession' it can offer us is an MFN at a future date or lunch at Lahore and dinner at Islamabad.

    Pakistani hospitality is legendary but beware of the poisoned chalice.

    http://m.rediff.com/news/column/why...-give-up-siachen/20120413.htm?sc_cid=twshare#
     
  10. nitesh

    nitesh Mob Control Manager Stars and Ambassadors

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    This sort of articles worries me, I seriously hope our politicains are not up to same strategic blunders done over past
     
  11. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    Yeah Butto came to Indira Gandhi crying like a beggar and then we saw how the beggar morphed into a wolve.
    No more mistakes. Losing Siechen could further reduce our changes of getting our Kashmir back. It seems like a useless and costly glacier to stay upon but its strategic importance would be realized when there are some strong balls sitting on Delhi's power chair. The mountain won't do anything by itself, it depends on you, if you would want and have the guts to leverage it.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
  12. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Haven't we got another thread already on, on this subject?
     
  13. john70

    john70 Regular Member

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    Mods can v merge them ?
     
  14. nrj

    nrj Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Read Vikram Sood's take -

    Why India cannot afford to give up Siachen

    The strategic advantage accruing to India in Siachen should not be given up for apparent short-term political gains. Giving up Siachen as a gesture of friendship would also mean that its recapture would be extremely expensive to India in men and material, says Vikram Sood.


    The venue: Badami Bagh, Srinagar , Headquarters of the Corps Commander 15 Corps, Lt Gen Prem Hoon

    The year: 1983

    The participants: The Corps Commander and the R&AW station chief.

    The subject: Siachen and reported Pakistani activities in that region according to intelligence reports from across the LoC.

    It would be untrue to suggest that this meeting led to the assault on the Soltoro Ridge which is actually west of the Siachen Glacier, but the fact is that the matter had assumed serious proportions and Indira Gandhi's government was deeply concerned.

    The reports, that the Pakistanis were making probes ostensibly through tourism and mountaineering groups, were disturbing. The obvious aim of the Pakistanis appeared to be cross the Saltoro heights and head for the Karakoram Pass on the Jammu and Kashmir border with Tibet (China).

    But why is this bleak part of the mountainous region so important to India that we are prepared to retain it all these years. The Saltoro Ridge is a formidable ridge that runs roughly north-west to south-east. It overlooks Gilgit and Baltistan to its west and has to be crossed by any one seeking access from Skardu in the Gilgit and Baltistan area through to the Karakoram Pass which enters Tibet. This is not to be confused with the Karakoram Highway which enters Xinjiang through the Khunjerab Pass. Any Pakistani location in Karakoram would be a threat to India in Ladakh from the north in addition to Chinese locations in Aksai Chin.

    The genesis of the problem lies in the way India-Pakistan agreements were worked out in Karachi (1949) and Shimla (1972). The ceasefire line or later the Line of Control was left undemarcated from point NJ 9842, and stated that it would run north from this point. This means that north was defined as the true geographical north and not an extension of the line in the direction which would take the line to the Karakoram Pass, something the Pakistanis claimed, wanted and were willing to assert this claim with perhaps an approving Chinese nod. North of Point NJ 9842 meant north to the Siachen and not to Karakoram.

    Siachen in the possession of Pakistan would have meant Pakistan would have access from Skardu through to the Karakoram near the Aksai Chin and eventual linking with Shahidullah on the Kashgar-Xigatse road that runs parallel to the Tibet- India border.

    Obviously, and given the aggressive manner in which Pakistan had begun to interfere in India, among other things actively inciting Sikh extremists, India could not afford to become vulnerable on another front.

    There was no option but to launch Operation Meghdoot on April 13, 1984. The Kumaon Regiment of the Indian Army with cover from the Indian Air Force reached the glacier to occupy two mountain passes at Bilafond La and Sia La while the Pakistan Army could only reach Gyong La. The battle zone was a triangle with point NJ9842 at the bottom, Indira Col due west and Karakoram Pass due east. Indian troops today control two thirds of the area and the world's highest motorable road at Khardung La with a helipad at a place called Sonam, at 21,000 feet. Pakistan overlooks the Nubra and Shyok valleys from the north. Saltoro lies almost exactly due north of Leh and north west of Kargil.

    The Saltoro was attained at considerable loss of life, equipment apart from the expenses involved. There were many lives also lost to the harsh climate and the attrition rate was indeed very high in the early days of the campaign. Over time these shortcomings have been removed, the attrition rate is much lower, logistics are nowhere near as nightmarish as they used to be nearly thirty years ago.

    Following the avalanche in Skardu which killed 150 Pakistani soldiers, there seems to be renewed talk that India should withdraw from the heights attained with so much sacrifice and at great cost to the nation. Siachen has recently been sneeringly described as 'A struggle of two bald men over a comb' or 'an ego problem between the two armies' and has elsewhere been described by some journalists as a futile war. Let it be said here that no war over one's own territory that is futile.

    It is certainly less futile than the US campaign in Iraq. The United States, unable to solve its own problems in the region or for that matter anywhere else, and seeking an early exit from Afghanistan by obliging Pakistan, has offered to assist India and Pakistan in a dialogue. There are reports that the two defence secretaries will meet shortly to discuss Siachen and Sir Creek.

    It seems that there is some great urgency to strike a deal and this is more than the usual periodic urge to concede something to Pakistan to look good. There are some Indian commentators who have even argued that India should now forget 26/11 and move forward. Nations that do not remember their past can have no future.

    One of the arguments being given is that the cost of retaining Siachen/Saltoro is prohibitive. This is rubbish. At approximately Rs two crores a day it means only Rs 730 crores annually out of a budget that is in the range of Rs 80,000 crores. Even if it were more than this, is there a fixed price for security and freedom? The loss of soldiers to harsh conditions has become minimal for the last many years and the hot war has long been over.

    An agreement might have been possible but Pakistani refusal to sign the Agreed Ground Position Line on a specious argument only leads to the suspicion that they would want to alter the position at first dawn. General Pervez Musharraf's [ Images ] Kargil adventure in 1999 was Pakistan's last attempt to change the ground position militarily and politically and also to negate the advantage of Saltoro with India.

    The continuing mindset is depicted not only in the rants of Lashkar-e-Tayiba [ Images ] chief Hafiz Saeed [ Images ] but also by what appears in the English press in Pakistan, which include songs in praise of The Hafiz. The Nation in an editorial on March 12 said "We must never lose sight of the fact that Kashmir is a left over issue of the Partition, gifted to us by the British. Unless it is settled in accordance with the Partition Plan, neither the division of India would be complete, nor would the state of Pakistan be complete."

    There has not been any evidence of a change of heart in the Pakistan Army -- the institution that calls the shots in Pakistan especially on issues relating to India. Everyone knows that. Thus withdrawal from these strategic heights without any iron clad guarantees that do not extend beyond declarations of intent would be the height of folly. This strategic advantage in Siachen should not be given up for apparent short-term political gains.

    The China factor cannot be ignored in this cockpit of the world. It was not so evident in 1984 although the Karakoram Highway had been built by the Chinese by then and Pakistan had illegally ceded a portion of the territory under their control, Shaksgam to them. Today, the Chinese footprint is much larger. In its own strategic interests in the region, China would be interested in greater Pakistani control over Gilgit and Baltistan.

    It has been investing $150 million (abour Rs 750 crore) for widening the KKH from 10 metres to 30 metres, to be used by all weather heavy vehicles, the kind that brought strategic material for Pakistan through the Khunjerab.

    A rail link was also planned, to be connected with Pakistan's main rail grid, and fiber optic cables were being laid in 2007. If China had a port in Gwadar that they could use, this would cut down the distance from Xinjiang to the Arabian Sea to merely 2,500 km. Today Xinjiang is 4,500 km away from the east coast of China. Gas and oil pipelines through from Gwadar and Xinjiang make sense only if Gilgit and Baltistan is secured. It is not a question of a glacier in the Himalayan heights; it is a question of India's security.

    The nation cannot afford to repeat the strategic mistakes of the past -- like halting our advance at Uri in 1948 or not capturing Skardu; or giving up Haji Pir in 1966; or returning 93,000 troops and territory in 1972.

    Giving up Siachen as a gesture of friendship would also mean that its recapture would be extremely expensive to India in men and material. Today, as the other side continues to arm itself with newer nuclear weapons, has not called off its jehadi hordes and the only 'concession' it can offer us is an MFN at a future date or lunch at Lahore [ Images ] and dinner at Islamabad .

    Pakistani hospitality is legendary but beware of the poisoned chalice.

    Vikram Sood

    Why India cannot afford to give up Siachen - Rediff.com India News
     
  15. hit&run

    hit&run Elite Member Elite Member

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  16. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Please read ejaz's post.
     
  17. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    The talking points for withdrawal of troops should be:

    (1) AGPL should be signed, marked and recognize by Pakistan like the LoC
    (2) Chinese presence from PoK in troops and engineers should be removed completely

    Unless both of these are adhered too, Indian troop withdrawal from Siachen is not possible.
     
  18. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Rather than talk about Siachen, India should first take up the issue of GB and Chini presence there and off course ultimate taking back of the territory.

    Tough posturing is required rather than being defensive as we have been for 60 years.

    India should actually up the ante by making more military structures around Siachen, increase troop level in the surrounding areas and make it even more costly for Pakis to hold ground there. We have not increased their costs so far to an extent we could have.

    We also need to keep inching our way ahead in that region till we can target all Chini made roads and tunnels. May be do a Kargil on them.
     
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  19. Dovah

    Dovah Untermensch Moderator

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    Who wants to reincarnate when you can get 72 houris after blowing up a bus full of kids!!
     
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  20. john70

    john70 Regular Member

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    Thanks lukerbaba.
     

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