US General Asks India for More Military Assistance in Afghanistan

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http://thediplomat.com/2016/08/us-general-asks-india-for-more-military-assistance-in-afghanistan/

US General Asks India for More Military Assistance in Afghanistan


Last week, during an official visit to India, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General John Nicholson, asked the Indian government to step up its military aid to Afghanistan, particularly in the field of combat aviation, according to local media reports.

In December 2015, India transferred three Mi-25 (Mi-24D) helicopter gunships to the Afghan Air Force (AAF), marking the first time that New Delhi has transferred lethal military equipment to Kabul. The Mi-25 is an upgraded variant of the Russian-made Mi-24 attack/transport helicopter.

“The Afghans have asked for more of these helicopters. There is an immediate need for more. When these aircraft come in, they immediately get into the fight,” Nicholson said during press conference on August 10.

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“We are building the Afghan Air Force as a critical component of security. That is built on several airframes. Some are older Russian models, integrating newer ones. We need more aircraft, and we are looking at how we can meet that need,” he added.

The AAF is currently operating five heavily armored older Mi-35 supplied by the Czech Republic in 2008, but they are rarely operational. The Mi-25s are meant to replace the AAF’s aging fleet of Mi-35s. As I explained in November 2015 (See: “Will India Deliver Attack Helicopters to Afghanistan?”):

The Mi-25 is a close-air support aircraft armed with a YakB four-barrelled, 12.7mm, built-in, flexibly mounted machine gun, as well as rocket and grenade launchers. It can be deployed against ground troops including armored and slow moving air targets. It can also serve as a low-capacity troop transport (up to eight paratroopers), and be used for medical evacuation missions.

The primary reason for the general’s push for more Indian military assistance is that Afghanistan is slowly running out of Russian spare parts for the AAF’s fleet of Russian-made attack helicopters due to Western sanctions against Russia.

“The Afghan air force needs to expand. We are concerned about making it sustainable, so that they can maintain the aircraft, get their parts in time…,” Nicholson said. “Due to sanctions on Russia, it’s difficult to acquire supplies of spare parts for Russian military platforms, because much of the money is given to Afghanistan by donors who have sanctions against Russia in place.”

As I noted elsewhere (See: “Russia to Sell Modern Attack Helicopters to Afghanistan”), Russia and Afghanistan are also negotiating the purchase of an unknown number of Mi-35 (likely the M or “Hind E” variant) helicopter gunships.

The Indian government has not officially responded to the general’s request so far.

 

mayfair

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The primary reason for the general’s push for more Indian military assistance is that Afghanistan is slowly running out of Russian spare parts for the AAF’s fleet of Russian-made attack helicopters due to Western sanctions against Russia.

“The Afghan air force needs to expand. We are concerned about making it sustainable, so that they can maintain the aircraft, get their parts in time…,” Nicholson said. “Due to sanctions on Russia, it’s difficult to acquire supplies of spare parts for Russian military platforms, because much of the money is given to Afghanistan by donors who have sanctions against Russia in place.”
The smart thing to do would be to get rid of these ridiculous, ineffective sanctions and resume normal business with Russia.

But not that would require a degree of lateral thinking, which they seemed to have stamped out in higher policy making circles in the US.

General, how do you expect India to provide Russian origin military equipment to Afghanistan, when we ourselves are in process of augmenting our attack helicopter fleet? At the end of it Russians will still need to supply the spare parts and what if they refuse to do so until we certify that they are needed for our own fleet only?

We cannot supply Rudra since we are in the process of inducting the system into our forces.
 

cannonfodder

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^^^ In lieu of mineral resources, we can provide some military HW. Giving Migs instead of LCA is better.

All military HW given must have self destruct device.. just in case.. :pound::pound::pound:
 

Rahul Singh

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A squadron of Rudra, LCH and armed HTT-40 should give sufficient strength to Afghan Air Force to fight insurgents. But this has to be a paid deal, the exchange could be a mix of many.
 

airtel

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A squadron of Rudra, LCH and armed HTT-40 should give sufficient strength to Afghan Air Force to fight insurgents. But this has to be a paid deal, the exchange could be a mix of many.
Money is not important if they are Killing pakistani assets in Afganistaan .....................this will reduce influence of pakistaan ...................which is beneficial for us .................Money is not so Important .
 

Rahul Singh

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Money is not important if they are Killing pakistani assets in Afganistaan .....................this will reduce influence of pakistaan ...................which is beneficial for us .................Money is not so Important .
I said "a paid deal" which does not necessary mean getting money in exchange.
 

Tshering22

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A squadron of Rudra, LCH and armed HTT-40 should give sufficient strength to Afghan Air Force to fight insurgents. But this has to be a paid deal, the exchange could be a mix of many.
You are forgetting that we don't have the capability to manufacture dozens of helos in a couple of months.

HAL is like an elephant on tranquilizers when it comes to manufacturing speed.

We have 180+ of our own orders to satisfy and even Modi ji cannot order to bypass IAF and Army for Afghanistan.

Most likely we won't be able to supply LCH to AAF for at least another 4-5 years; IF we are fast with our local orders.
 

Rahul Singh

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You are forgetting that we don't have the capability to manufacture dozens of helos in a couple of months.

HAL is like an elephant on tranquilizers when it comes to manufacturing speed.

We have 180+ of our own orders to satisfy and even Modi ji cannot order to bypass IAF and Army for Afghanistan.

Most likely we won't be able to supply LCH to AAF for at least another 4-5 years; IF we are fast with our local orders.
I did not talk about any timeline and I know such an order can only be fulfilled in no less than 7-8 years. Anyway, that was just ideal force structure for AAF that I visualized.

BTW I don't blame HAL alone. Any aircraft is a system of systems and HAL can't be expected to build all those. You have to have a complete ecosystem in place for speedy production. The last I checked, the sections of LCA SP series were still being manufactured at labs. Now it would be unfair to just blame HAL if there is not a single vendor which can produce some sections of LCA made of composite materials, in process LCA production is getting delayed.

We need to focus on developing a healthy ecosystem, not just putting another plant or an aircraft line producing a foreign design on foreign made jigs. The government needs to invest adequately in SMEs and MSMEs to complete the ecosystem. For that launching multiple aircraft development projects will be more beneficial than just licence building another from an exporting county.
 

Tshering22

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I did not talk about any timeline and I know such an order can only be fulfilled in no less than 7-8 years. Anyway, that was just ideal force structure for AAF that I visualized.

BTW I don't blame HAL alone. Any aircraft is a system of systems and HAL can't be expected to build all those. You have to have a complete ecosystem in place for speedy production. The last I checked, the sections of LCA SP series were still being manufactured at labs. Now it would be unfair to just blame HAL if there is not a single vendor which can produce some sections of LCA made of composite materials, in process LCA production is getting delayed.

We need to focus on developing a healthy ecosystem, not just putting another plant or an aircraft line producing a foreign design on foreign made jigs. The government needs to invest adequately in SMEs and MSMEs to complete the ecosystem. For that launching multiple aircraft development projects will be more beneficial than just licence building another from an exporting county.
The issue is that laggard sections of defence PSUs don't get punished. Their overseeing government officials are not punished and often the hardworking engineers and scientists who do their job well, get the stick.

That has to change. Overseeing officers need to be severely punished for delays and even sacked for government services. Only then they will learn a lesson.
 

Rahul Singh

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The issue is that laggard sections of defence PSUs don't get punished. Their overseeing government officials are not punished and often the hardworking engineers and scientists who do their job well, get the stick.

That has to change. Overseeing officers need to be severely punished for delays and even sacked for government services. Only then they will learn a lesson.
Modi government did sack Avinash Chandra.
 

PD_Solo

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The issue is that laggard sections of defence PSUs don't get punished. Their overseeing government officials are not punished and often the hardworking engineers and scientists who do their job well, get the stick.

That has to change. Overseeing officers need to be severely punished for delays and even sacked for government services. Only then they will learn a lesson.
There are many such esteemed officers in [email protected] who hide mattresses in their office for afternoon snooze.

Bitter truth to gulp.
 

Jagdish58

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There are many such esteemed officers in [email protected] who hide mattresses in their office for afternoon snooze.

Bitter truth to gulp.
Yes indeed even Blue collar employees under safety of Union ( Any Engineer or manager questioning them faces ire of Union) , they pass time sleep chit chat and wonder around facility with no output ,
one of my friend who was temp intern in HAL Bangalore had horrible time
 

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