Not doubting gallantry at tac level - even 4 Cavalry Commandant got an SJ. But as you said the prep at Bde and Div level was trash, poor staff work too. I guess it was a mixture of own overestimation and opposition's underestimation that led to the failure.
Let me come in tangible terms. Following were the problems:-
- Out of date maps
- No info about the enemy deployed at front
- No peace time recces conducted of this area.
- GOC out of contact with Brigade Commanders during peace and during the actual planning as well.
- Absence of a Corps HQ to coordinate the efforts of 1 Armored and 11 Divisions. Both GOCs therefore looked after their own without any consideration for unity of conception and effort.
- Poor decision making at Div and Brigade levels, such as in the case of 4 Cavalry, 6 Lancers and 24 Cavalry.