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Former PAF ACM Sohail Aman Gives His Views on PAF V IAF !

SQ8

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So waqas shahib.. can you explain hiw that's relevant to my statement?
The PAF should have shot down 11 and not 2 cowardice line amplified by the prophet’s hadiath that somehow taking on India would have mattered instead of economic considerations.

Ironically I remember such categories back during the WoT who espoused such statements and they either had two outcomes.
1. Were secretly working on their exit strategy and still spout “jihad against infidels” while working as a clerk in spain

2. Joined Hizb-ut-Tahrir and eventually were shunned by all surrounding them so now live off daddy’s money and some income from making websites

In real life these people who parrot Quran and sunnah instead of truly understanding the prophet’s life and the guidance in the minutest of actions are the first to run west or get their families out.
 

SaadH

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Shooting down 11 jets would have resulted in a confirmed war. Missiles or no missiles.

How so? Pakistan wasn't invading their territory or launched attacks in India Proper taking out their airbases or other assets...in fact taking out 11 of their jets would have put them on a defensive and they would have had to really think again about escalating the situation for the fear of losing even more jets.
 

kursed

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How so? Pakistan wasn't invading their territory or launched attacks in India Proper taking out their airbases or other assets...in fact taking out 11 of their jets would have put them on a defensive and they would have had to really think again about escalating the situation for the fear of losing even more jets.
I’m not sure how many times do I have to repeat the same thing, we made the same mistake at the time of Kargil of underestimating the way enemy opted to wage war.

What makes you believe that they’d have only responded with IAF? They were desperate enough to turn to unconventional weapons at the loss of one jet. What makes you believe they’d have not escalated the situation (given elections were so near and Modi desperately needed a win) after the loss of 11 jets?

The professionals who do this day in and day out, kind of know what they’re doing?
 

SaadH

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I’m not sure how many times do I have to repeat the same thing, we made the same mistake at the time of Kargil of underestimating the way enemy opted to wage war.
You are right, IA strike formations struck on the international border and Lahore fell to invading Indian forces in fall of '99.
 

HRK

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Shooting down 11 jets would have resulted in a confirmed war. Missiles or no missiles.
I do understand that it was a hard decision and most of the people do support it, but the issue is by giving measured response to Indian aggression we have opened the door for Indian planners to commit the same aggression in future at their will and time of their choice, as our response would be measured and appropriate to their action.

We need to understand that Indian cold start doctrine (later proactive doctrine) is based on the thinking that Pakistan would not respond disproportionality to the Indian aggression & would keep the theater of war limited not only in terms of Geography but also in terms of Intensity as well.

This thing will favour the Indian war fighting doctrine, and would keep Indian in the position to dictate the 'Direction and Outcome of the war", in short in terms of Strategy we have granted India the position of taking the Initiative

Now this thing alone is destabilising the equilibrium of the defence dynamic of India Pakistan, so if we analysis the situation under the light of Stability and Instability Theory then the already existing instability b/w India and Pakistan on conventional level has increased further and this increase in Instability would Destabilise the Stability at Strategic Level as well.

One more more thing which we are ignoring here is that in terms of conventional military balance we 'are' minor military power as compare to India; therefore we had to keep the strategic initiative with us, but the events of Feb 2019 has shown that It was India who was eager to enter the domain of strategic war and was ready to take initiative.

This thing alone shows the destabilizing strategic balance in South Asia due to irrational approach of one of the participant of this equation, but here we need to identify and understand the factors which encourage this approach of India.

We can assume that some internal factors such as Political needs of Modi lead BJP government was one of the reason which might have given rise to Indian thinking to cross the line as this is a very Popular narrative repeated by both Indian and Pakistani commentators, but with their own understandings; we have witnessed in past any incident like attack on Indian Parliament or Bombay attack had won ampel domestic political support to BJP and Hindutva ideology to win those elections, but India never dared to cross the International Border or LOC after those incidents in retaliation, so what has changed the Indian behaviour this time .... ???

In my opinion it was better understanding of India about the possible response of Pakistan, for some reason indians were sure that Pakistan would not respond unproportionally and inappropriately, why this was the case .... ??? it is very difficult for me to answer.

Now what could be the consequences in future because of our policy of 'Restrain and Measured Response' ???

In my Opinion

- As I have already mentioned above that we have lost the initiative which mean it will be the Indian who will not only "Initiate the event but would set the tempo and Direction" of the event(s) as per the needs which could be related to domestic or International.

- As the initiative would be with India we will the one who would respond or in simple word we will the one who will adopt the reactive approach, which mean we will be part of Indian strategy to serve the domestic or international interest of indian state.

- As our reaction would be measured to any possible Indian action therefore it will provide India opportunity to execute the Indian ambitions at will without the breaching of Nuclear threshold.

Or in simpler words Limited War (read battle) in limitted theater at her own will, and if in future this thing happen more than one time then we will be a Laughing Stock for the world.
 
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kursed

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I do understand that it was a hard decision and most of the people do support it, but the issue is by giving measured response to Indian aggression we have opened the door for Indian planners to commit the same aggression in future at their will and time of their choice, as our response would be measured and appropriate to their action.

I completely agree but you have to keep in mind that we'd have been at war, had those missiles actually connected and resulted in the killing of 300 children, as was envisioned. The only reason our response in turn was measured because none of that happened. Now, would you actually want Pakistan to commit to a war for three holes in the ground and a dead crow, resulting in actual, deaths at our end as well?


We need to understand that Indian cold start doctrine (later proactive doctrine) is based on the thinking that Pakistan would not respond disproportionality to the Indian aggression & would keep the theater of war limited not only in terms of Geography but also in terms of Intensity as well.

This thing will favour the Indian war fighting doctrine, and would keep Indian in the position to dictate the 'Direction and Outcome of the war", in short in terms of Strategy we have granted India the position of taking the Initiative.

That India opted to turn non-conventional before Pakistan subverted regional calculations for a lot of powers, not just us. It just showed that entire IAF on that day was decapitated for good reason. Why do you think this has since not affected our own strategic calculus as well? Any next skirmish has a far higher chance of going up the escalation ladder, faster than anyone has envisioned before.


In my opinion it was better understanding of India about the possible response of Pakistan, for some reason indians were sure that Pakistan would not respond unproportionally and inappropriately, why this was the case .... ??? it is very difficult for me to answer.

Actually this is not difficult to gauge at all. And you have answered your own question, prior to posing it. Here:
We can assume that some internal factors such as Political needs of Modi lead BJP government was one of the reason which might have given rise to Indian thinking to cross the line as this is a very Popular narrative repeated by both Indian and Pakistani commentators, but with their own understandings; we have witnessed in past any incident like attack on Indian Parliament or Bombay attack had won ampel domestic political support to BJP and Hindutva ideology to win those elections, but India never dared to cross the International Border or LOC after those incidents in retaliation, so what has changed the Indian behaviour this time .... ???

In my view, our mistake was to let go of 2016's fire mission across the border and not respond in kind (a la surgical strike 1). That is where the basis of 2019's Balakot mission were formed, the other side genuinely believed that dropping bombs across the LOC via IAF would be taken as a run of the mill fire mission across LOC that Pakistan took without much noise.

I believe since SR, Pakistan has actually reiterated that any such incursion in future would actually lead to war and that Pakistan will not respond with tit for tat but will go all in.

- As I have already mentioned above that we have lost the initiative which mean it will be the Indian who will not only "Initiate the event but would set the tempo and Direction" of the event(s) as per the needs which could be related to domestic or International.

So here's the thing, we look at SR in isolation, which was not the case in real life. Post SR- Pakistan moved its armored formations closer to Sialkot border. And one of the biggest pitched arty fires in recent memory were conducted across Sialkot border. One of our PN subs had Port of Gujrat under a lockdown for 4 days, with IN desperately looking for it - took them a month, but were not able to find it. In essence, Pakistan's response to Balakot strikes was three pronged - in air, on land and on sea frontiers. We did not take the strikes lying down, took our pound of flesh and then some.

But yes, the next time such a thing occurs, I believe Pakistan has already made it clear that all bets will be off. It was part of Gen (r) Kidwai's briefing as well, if I remember it correctly.
 

HRK

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Now, would you actually want Pakistan to commit to a war for three holes in the ground and a dead crow, resulting in actual, deaths at our end
My understanding related to this is that

We failed to address the intentions of ruling Political class of Indian, it was never the case of 3 holes on Pakistani soils but the possible use of Pakistan for the internal political gains in future by India, in simple words we had to extract higher price for their irrational action which has complicated threat matrix of south asia more

Any next skirmish has a far higher chance of going up the escalation ladder, faster than anyone has envisioned before.
exactly this is my fear ..... it was our chance to respond conventionally and to punish India politically without blowing the readline of nuclear threshold.

We had the chance of calling the Indian bluff of limited war, we missed the chance; therefore we will be subjected to another misadventure which this time may prove to be more intense.
But yes, the next time such a thing occurs, I believe Pakistan has already made it clear that all bets will be off. It was part of Gen (r) Kidwai's briefing as well, if I remember it correctly.
This is the my biggest fear, as there is a saying in English "One switch in time save nine" ; my intentions is to save the South Asia from Strategic War which if occured then nothing would be left for anyone, therefore a Higher Conventional Response was necessary to extract higher cost then calculated by Indian Political class so that could end the possibility of repeat the same in future.

Consider it similar to Indian response to Pakistan's attempt of Kargil which successfully ended Pakistan's will to initiate a direct armed conflict in Kashmir, we can debate the reason of post Kargil attitude of Pakistan but the outcome is visible for everyone and change of attitude of Pakistan and can witnessed by the observers of India-Pakistan relations.
 
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So next time, even in a minor skirmish, we can expect actual usage of missiles at Pakistani targets?

India knowing our restraint and economic woes which might make us hesitant to prolong/further the conflict will certainly devise strategy to play with us.

You can't give peaceful gestures to a war-madman. Returning the pilot in such a short time only alleviates their false sense of confidence.

Indians always wanted limited conflict localized to an area and it seems they might just have found the right formula for it. They struck in KP while we still remained limited to Kashmir, a disputed territory. We better make up our mind if we are truly ready/willing to fight India or not?
 

arjunk

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ince 1947 the LOC still stands, not an inch given

False. India annexed Turtok and Pakistan annexed Chamb in 1971.
So next time, even in a minor skirmish, we can expect actual usage of missiles at Pakistani targets?

India knowing our restraint and economic woes which might make us hesitant to prolong/further the conflict will certainly devise strategy to play with us.

You can't give peaceful gestures to a war-madman. Returning the pilot in such a short time only alleviates their false sense of confidence.

Indians always wanted limited conflict localized to an area and it seems they might just have found the right formula for it. They struck in KP while we still remained limited to Kashmir, a disputed territory. We better make up our mind if we are truly ready/willing to fight India or not?
So next time, even in a minor skirmish, we can expect actual usage of missiles at Pakistani targets?

India knowing our restraint and economic woes which might make us hesitant to prolong/further the conflict will certainly devise strategy to play with us.

You can't give peaceful gestures to a war-madman. Returning the pilot in such a short time only alleviates their false sense of confidence.

Indians always wanted limited conflict localized to an area and it seems they might just have found the right formula for it. They struck in KP while we still remained limited to Kashmir, a disputed territory. We better make up our mind if we are truly ready/willing to fight India or not?

Missiles are no joke. If either country sees a barrage of missiles coming they may assume it is a nuclear attack and launch their entire arsenal.

This is what made India back down from a Brahmos strike in 2019.
 

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To all friends who think downing 11 jets was a great idea:

Position yourself as india then Imagine, losing 11 aircrafts in response to few trees from a much smaller country, with much smaller military and many times smaller economy. I mean, we as 3-5 times smaller country couldn't resist on the loss of trees as they had violated our controlled airspace. We went back very next day with full Lao lashkar, shot down 2, they lost heli and 7 officers burned in the panic caused by us, 4 of their military targets were delivered a message by H-4s. How you can expect they would take such losses without equalizing the score in one way or the other. Knowing they are being owned by PAF they would have retaliated with their strength, which is their Navy.. They think our weakness is our navy. What if they'd plan sinking PN ship in revenge of 11 aircrafts?.

I mean for War lovers, it was a great idea to go ahead and shot down 11 jets as temperatures were already high and any miscalculation from any side could have resulted in full blown war. Full blown war is easy for us as we are keyboard warriors, but that war means 1000s of soldiers dead & wounded here in Pakistan and 1000s dead there in india. Two nuclear nations have to show restraint. It is not that we are afraid or something, its is only a sane thing to avoid war.

Plus, as already pointed out, question is can we as a nation can sustain no food supplies, no oil supplies for few weeks or months. There won't be fuel or life as usual when a full scale war is happening. Problem with us is our entire trade gets to halt when we are at war with india, both sea & air routes. We don't have depth. But india being large country, their eastern, southern sides can remain open. We took the day as victors and thats what matters. Our greed to increase the score could have resulted something undesirable.

I disagree that our measured response has paved a way for future indian intrusions. On the contrary, indians believed that we will not even respond. We busted their myth and gave them H-4s with videos with a CLEAR message, next time those will NOT be maneuvered offset at last second.
I think our response was great. Further greed is unnecessary.
 

Waqas

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A military planner has only one job, win the war by killing the enemy, his retreat or aggression or any other tactical decision should solely be based on that sole outcome winning the war, on 27th of Feb our military planners were not military strategists that day, they were politicians and they made a political decision by handicapping the PAF from doing her job.

If you don't have the will to fight, or the will to take the initiative, or if you are afraid of loss or the fear of the final war, you will never defeat an enemy 10 times your size, follow the examples of the likes of Zukov or Eric Von Manstien when he turned the tables of the war after the total collapse at Stalingrad, or the likes of Khalid Bin Waleed who defeated an enemy much larger than his through surprise and intiative if you can not be like them then give up your uniform and pass it on to the next who can.
 

Vapnope

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I do understand that it was a hard decision and most of the people do support it, but the issue is by giving measured response to Indian aggression we have opened the door for Indian planners to commit the same aggression in future at their will and time of their choice, as our response would be measured and appropriate to their action.

We need to understand that Indian cold start doctrine (later proactive doctrine) is based on the thinking that Pakistan would not respond disproportionality to the Indian aggression & would keep the theater of war limited not only in terms of Geography but also in terms of Intensity as well.

This thing will favour the Indian war fighting doctrine, and would keep Indian in the position to dictate the 'Direction and Outcome of the war", in short in terms of Strategy we have granted India the position of taking the Initiative

Now this thing alone is destabilising the equilibrium of the defence dynamic of India Pakistan, so if we analysis the situation under the light of Stability and Instability Theory then the already existing instability b/w India and Pakistan on conventional level has increased further and this increase in Instability would Destabilise the Stability at Strategic Level as well.

One more more thing which we are ignoring here is that in terms of conventional military balance we 'are' minor military power as compare to India; therefore we had to keep the strategic initiative with us, but the events of Feb 2019 has shown that It was India who was eager to enter the domain of strategic war and was ready to take initiative.

This thing alone shows the destabilizing strategic balance in South Asia due to irrational approach of one of the participant of this equation, but here we need to identify and understand the factors which encourage this approach of India.

We can assume that some internal factors such as Political needs of Modi lead BJP government was one of the reason which might have given rise to Indian thinking to cross the line as this is a very Popular narrative repeated by both Indian and Pakistani commentators, but with their own understandings; we have witnessed in past any incident like attack on Indian Parliament or Bombay attack had won ampel domestic political support to BJP and Hindutva ideology to win those elections, but India never dared to cross the International Border or LOC after those incidents in retaliation, so what has changed the Indian behaviour this time .... ???

In my opinion it was better understanding of India about the possible response of Pakistan, for some reason indians were sure that Pakistan would not respond unproportionally and inappropriately, why this was the case .... ??? it is very difficult for me to answer.

Now what could be the consequences in future because of our policy of 'Restrain and Measured Response' ???

In my Opinion

- As I have already mentioned above that we have lost the initiative which mean it will be the Indian who will not only "Initiate the event but would set the tempo and Direction" of the event(s) as per the needs which could be related to domestic or International.

- As the initiative would be with India we will the one who would respond or in simple word we will the one who will adopt the reactive approach, which mean we will be part of Indian strategy to serve the domestic or international interest of indian state.

- As our reaction would be measured to any possible Indian action therefore it will provide India opportunity to execute the Indian ambitions at will without the breaching of Nuclear threshold.

Or in simpler words Limited War (read battle) in limitted theater at her own will, and if in future this thing happen more than one time then we will be a Laughing Stock for the world.
Totally agree with you that we missed an opportunity to send a clear message to people who were not hesitating to kill 300 young kids for brownie points at home.

Post Kargil, they have decided that there is no space for dialogue with Pakistan and they will use force without even providing any proof for anything happening inside IOK. Musharraf's policy of actively stopping the people from crossing over into IOK to Pakistani state sharing intelligence with Indian side on AQ militants, all of this has been considered a surrender by Pakistani state. Despite our best efforts, the other side has increased the rhetoric and proxy war against Pakistan be it Srivasta group or supporting all militant groups inside Pakistan. I do not wish for a war however there is no need to offer olive leaf to someone who is pointing a gun towards you.

Even today, our diplomatic response is very weak and it is still being considered by the other side that they have "called a bluff on a nuclear Pakistan".
 

SIPRA

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Totally agree with you that we missed an opportunity to send a clear message to people who were not hesitating to kill 300 young kids for brownie points at home.

In my opinion, Balakot Strike was a deliberate miss, and there was no intent to destruct any building or infrastructure, or to kill anybody, whatsoever. Modi doesn't possess that degree of courage. The core objective was only to humiliate Pakistan, and, riding upon that humiliation, to win a thumping majority in the coming election, with the help of pliable media. Arch actor, in this game, was not IAF, but "Godi Media". Whole of the plot (including the narrative of "300 terrorists killed", Madrassa smashed etc. etc.) was prepared, far before, the IAF aircrafts left their bases. Pakistan retaliated very effectively, within the limitations, it was facing. It was a happy ending, for all concerned.
 

TsAr

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The PAF should have shot down 11 and not 2 cowardice line amplified by the prophet’s hadiath that somehow taking on India would have mattered instead of economic considerations.

Ironically I remember such categories back during the WoT who espoused such statements and they either had two outcomes.
1. Were secretly working on their exit strategy and still spout “jihad against infidels” while working as a clerk in spain

2. Joined Hizb-ut-Tahrir and eventually were shunned by all surrounding them so now live off daddy’s money and some income from making websites

In real life these people who parrot Quran and sunnah instead of truly understanding the prophet’s life and the guidance in the minutest of actions are the first to run west or get their families out.
People quoting hadith's also need to read sulah Hudabayia.
 

blain2

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Where is Yashfeen Jamal when you need her? The idiotic questioning by Jameel Farooqi is exemplary of our so-called journalists wasting opportunities to ask good, well-thought out questions instead of populist nonsense.

Sohail Aman has left a very good legacy behind. Getting called "mini-Nur Khan" by former PAF officers is an immense honor:
 
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