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Sine Nomine

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But in a hilly region paradrop would produce nothing but chaos. What if the paradrop is successful after the Indian airforce as well as AD has been completely neutralised. What will they do if there is no proper link up and the link up troops have been bogged down or even delayed by the indians. It will be a far cry like Operation Market Garden The only use of paradrop would be sabotage ops by small SFs.The only way we can get Kashmir is by simultaneous offensive ops by both 1 corps as well as 10th corps and complete air superiority over the concerned sectors but then a general war will start over the whole of IB. Moreover,remember that among the thresholds for the use of nuclear weapons is space threshold.
What PAF would do when hostile assets have been neutralised?
It would run non stop CAS for clearing enemy entrenched troops coupled with UAV and Gunships.
It cannot be compared to ops Market Garden since we are not looking for a 100 Km long salient as objective that too in almost plain area,our main objective just lies 50 Km away from PA front line on top of that after Paradropped troops have secured an airfield under cover of PAF,more units can be deployed via mixture of helos and aircrafts.
 

GriffinsRule

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We havn't tried taking J&K even once at national level,correct me if i am wrong when did Pakistan ever drew a plan engaging all vectors of state for this single task?Never


It's going to be battle uphill in hills, we need tons of small equipment and manpower.After Pakistan breaks IA at LOC if everything goes according to plan,it would be slow,bitter and bloody fight involving small arms,rpg's,AA guns,mortars and pack howitzers.


I have studied all of these options wrp to J&k;
1-Heliborne ops in first phase are out of question,SAM's,AA guns and shoulder fired missiles would be major obstruction on top of that it requires huge no of rotary assets.
2-Kargil was a missed opportunity,was started without proper buildup and ended in humiliation for us.It would have been started if GHQ was able to make Bharati buildup at IB akin to signing of death warrant for IA troops in siachen.
3-Days of doing a covert ops in J&K are long gone,locals won't trust this time and if they even do, it won't impact anything except tying up 1 or 2 inf div's of IA.



Only a Divisional level Paradrop in valley would make difference but there is more into that;
0-Our mission is to capture valley.
1-It would require complete air superiority over J&k and highly contested airspace over rest of area that too in favour of PAF.
2-SEAD/DEAD ops by PAF.
Both 1 & 2 require atleast double the amount of current PAF assets.
3-Huge transport fleet both tact and strat.
4-A good amount of launching bases from where troops and equipment can be uplifted and dropped at DLZ's.
5-A determined three pronged attack from Bagh for capturing Baramullah,Poonch, Gulmarg and establishing rendezvous with elements of paradrop.
5-That ops has to be completed in less than 24 hours.
For pulling all this off we need balls of steel and $$$.
Not just that, to achieve success, we have to be the aggressors as well, that means attacking without provocation and gaining the element of surprise. Not sure that is possible really given the Indian surveillance capabilities and the Americans playing spoilers, but that would have to be it. Cant take J&K when India is prepared and waiting, or in fact attacking as well.
 

Sine Nomine

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"Operation Gibraltar"
Sir it wasn't.
Not just that, to achieve success, we have to be the aggressors as well, that means attacking without provocation and gaining the element of surprise. Not sure that is possible really given the Indian surveillance capabilities and the Americans playing spoilers, but that would have to be it. Cant take J&K when India is prepared and waiting, or in fact attacking as well.
That's why if we want to take J&K,a plan must be at national level,preparing mil into a juggernaut from which enemy even with prior knowledge won't be able to escape.
 

Signalian

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But in a hilly region paradrop would produce nothing but chaos. What if the paradrop is successful after the Indian airforce as well as AD has been completely neutralised. What will they do if there is no proper link up and the link up troops have been bogged down or even delayed by the indians. It will be a far cry like Operation Market Garden The only use of paradrop would be sabotage ops by small SFs.The only way we can get Kashmir is by simultaneous offensive ops by both 1 corps as well as 10th corps and complete air superiority over the concerned sectors but then a general war will start over the whole of IB. Moreover,remember that among the thresholds for the use of nuclear weapons is space threshold.
Air assault and para drop (airborne) are different.
What PAF would do when hostile assets have been neutralised?
It would run non stop CAS for clearing enemy entrenched troops coupled with UAV and Gunships.
It cannot be compared to ops Market Garden since we are not looking for a 100 Km long salient as objective that too in almost plain area,our main objective just lies 50 Km away from PA front line on top of that after Paradropped troops have secured an airfield under cover of PAF,more units can be deployed via mixture of helos and aircrafts.
which motorized or mechanized vehicle can effectively support troops in mountains?
ATV? M113 ? 4x4 light armored Jeep ? armored Humvee ? 8 x 8 or 6 x 6 wheeled IFV ?
 

Sine Nomine

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which motorized or mechanized vehicle can effectively support troops in mountains?
ATV? M113 ? 4x4 light armored Jeep ? armored Humvee ? 8 x 8 or 6 x 6 wheeled IFV
M113 is out of question,a mixture of armored Humvees and wheeled IFV is best bet in such terrain.
P.S:-Have you taken look at Dongfeng CSK-181?If not not do take a look at it.
 

Desert Fox 1

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I think that first we should define the objectives and then the means of reaching them...
By the way I think that the best way of getting Kashmir is by first establishing complete air superiority over concerned sectors then by using the light troops you are talking about for ambushes and restricting movement plus the airforce can help destroy bridges and other infrastructure of strategic importance, thus preventing reinforcements. This will be followed by a quick link up by elements of 10corps. Like water,our troops will be fluid in their movements leaving pockets of resistance and well defended garrisons for follow up troops and artillery. 1corps may also be used, as general war would undoubtedly be started,to pinch at the gurdaspur district preventing outflanking of 10corps from south and also keeping the enemy at defensive.
A somewhat similar strategy was adopted by the irregulars in 1948 where they would first set up ambushes and blocking positions behind the garrisons then lay siege to it and after the reinforcements were dealt with they would leave as small sieging force and move up to another objective.
 

Signalian

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M113 is out of question,a mixture of armored Humvees and wheeled IFV is best bet in such terrain.
P.S:-Have you taken look at Dongfeng CSK-181?If not not do take a look at it.
Yes i had a look at it.

Why not M-113 ? you think the engine is not powerful or the tracks wont go any further on the paved road ?
IA took Stuart up in the mountains weighing 14.5 T, M-113 is almost same weight. From combat point, M-113 burns badly so a RPG hit can be disastrous. T-59 II also dragged itself up on a mountain peak. Now that 105mm gun would be very useful but T-59 II will be slow in mobility.

So what are we looking at now ? mobility or firepower or Armor protection in mountains on paved roads and dirt tracks.

There will be lots of 2.5, 5, 10 Ton trucks too. Support vehicles are usually soft skinned.
 

Metal 0-1

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which motorized or mechanized vehicle can effectively support troops in mountains?
ATV? M113 ? 4x4 light armored Jeep ? armored Humvee ? 8 x 8 or 6 x 6 wheeled IFV ?
4x4, 6x6, 8x8 Armored vehicles OR IFVs and M113s are out of equation.

With light and fast vehicles you can out flank enemy armour which will be struggling in given terrain and couple of shots from ATGMs OR RPG-7s will definitely knock them out.

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They can be air lifted with troops in OA.
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OR Light Land Rovers.
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SAS using them for years.
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Sine Nomine

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Yes i had a look at it.

Why not M-113 ? you think the engine is not powerful or the tracks wont go any further on the paved road ?
IA took Stuart up in the mountains weighing 14.5 T, M-113 is almost same weight. From combat point, M-113 burns badly so a RPG hit can be disastrous. T-59 II also dragged itself up on a mountain peak. Now that 105mm gun would be very useful but T-59 II will be slow in mobility.

So what are we looking at now ? mobility or firepower or Armor protection in mountains on paved roads and dirt tracks.

There will be lots of 2.5, 5, 10 Ton trucks too. Support vehicles are usually soft skinned.
Leave M-113 for Mech formations operating in plains.Any tracked vehicle is going to put constraint on logistics,best bet is mixture of same type of vehicles armored and unarmored wheeled one's.
Tracked vehicle at best in these areas can be deployed for psychological factors rather than operational one's.
Our best bet is light infantry(in huge numbers) with lighter and lethal firepower aided by AC,Gunships, UCAV's and sound logistics chain.
But first we should define the objectives for our troops, then can we talk about the equipment and supplies that'll be needed to attain and sustain those objectives
For me our first objective should be Valley,an area where population supports us and which is easy as compared to Kargil area and Jammu.
 

Desert Fox 1

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For me our first objective should be Valley,an area where population supports us and which is easy as compared to Kargil area and Jammu
Yes but you see that many garrisons and military strongholds are there between Srinagar and AK. It is not a free run. First we have to identify which salients have to be attacked and occupied which to be bypassed and which to be contained. There are the garrisons of poonch,rajouri in the way to Srinagar. Not mentioning Baramulla that lies to Northwest of Srinagar and pulwama which lies to the south East. Just mentioning a few.
If we go straight for poonch without containing rajouri then they can flank us from the south, similarly if we go from poonch to Srinagar there will be baramulla to the North of our forces and badgam is also Infront of Srinagar.
 
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PanzerKiel

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Yes but you see that many garrisons and military strongholds are there between Srinagar and AK. It is not a free run. First we have to identify which salients have to be attacked and occupied which to be bypassed and which to be contained. There are the garrisons of poonch,rajouri in the way to Srinagar. Not mentioning Baramulla that lies to Northwest of Srinagar and pulwama which lies to the south East. Just mentioning a few.
If we go straight for poonch without containing rajouri then they can flank us from the south, similarly if we go from poonch to Srinagar there will be baramulla to the North of our forces and badgam is also Infront of Srinagar.
Keeping in view the current force dispositions and reserves on both sides in Kashmir , major territorial losses or gains may not be possible for any side.

This thing was recognized by IA at the onset of 71 war. Therefore, instead of coming for AK frontally, General Candeth launched his main thrust along working boundary in Sialkot and Shakargarh sectors. His aim being to outflank our strong defences along LOC.

If war would have continued, this thrust along with frontal attacks against our 12 division would have been difficult for us to handle. We would have been forced to commit the infantry component of ARN initially, and later of ARS as well.

With ARS diluted, their strike forces, along with forces shifted from Eastern Command, world have been able to operate with impunity south of Lahore and in desert.
 

PanzerKiel

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Yes but you see that many garrisons and military strongholds are there between Srinagar and AK. It is not a free run. First we have to identify which salients have to be attacked and occupied which to be bypassed and which to be contained. There are the garrisons of poonch,rajouri in the way to Srinagar. Not mentioning Baramulla that lies to Northwest of Srinagar and pulwama which lies to the south East. Just mentioning a few.
If we go straight for poonch without containing rajouri then they can flank us from the south, similarly if we go from poonch to Srinagar there will be baramulla to the North of our forces and badgam is also Infront of Srinagar.
In mountains, fight is always for the peaks since they dominate a wide area all around, you dominate in terms of observation as well as fire.

A buildup in the face of an enemy who is on the peaks cannot be hidden for long. Surprise is difficult to achieve, unless infiltration is resorted to, that too in small groups. 2 Naga, 18 Grenadiers and 8 Sikhs, as part of 192 Brigade, had to face the same kind of domination during their assaults on Tiger Hill.
The defender can easily reinforce his defences if he gets even a whiff of a buildup. (Poonch 1971, 12 Division's 2 brigade attack against Indian 2 brigades)

In simple words, if you have to attack, then you must aim to to capture a peak quickly, then must open the logistics route so tthat the newly captured ground is able to sustain the counter attacks of the defender.

Remember, the defender is already taxed since he has to attack uphill to regain his lost position. He can only succeed if he can deny the attacker on the top urgently needed re-supply of ammo and heavy weapons. If defender can deny that, then with support of heavy artillery ofcourse to keep the heads down of the people at top, he has some chance of success.

LOC is already full of salients and bulges at present. They are being held just because the defences at the tops have been fortified and well stuffed supplies to last for weeks.

While India can induct reinforcements into the sector in wartime, Pakistan may not be able to spare much because of its army is much smaller. Nonetheless, compared to earlier wars, Pakistan is far better off even allowing for land’s reinforcements.

India might seem to have many opportunities to attack in this sector because of its superior strength. The problem is that the Indian line of communications runs very close to LOC. The loss of the road itself would not be fatal because:

All formations have large reserve stockpiles of equipment to enable them to fight for many months..and..
Air re-supply is available on a considerable scale.

The location of existing roads and the need to protect them force India into some very predictable moves. For example, IA always has to attack from Kargil and from Dras to push the PA as far back as possible. This predictability limits IA flexibility and prevents the achievement of surprise.

Moreover, still the force to space ratio in this area is very low. This is to say that given the length of the front, the number of troops is insubstantial. This should provide excellent opportunity for maneuver. The high mountains, however, impose severe constraints on which areas can be used for operations.

While India has good lateral east- west communications, Pakistan has good north-south communication through the river valleys. It is easier for IA to defend than to attack: but the converse is true for Pakistan.

Historically, the only fighting that resulted in strategic gains in North Kashmir took place in 1947-48. Initially, there were no Indian regular troops in the area, and the few levies of the Maharaja of Kashmir proved ineffective. The area was considered inaccessible, though this did not stop the Azad troops from capturing it. India could not even spare a single regular battalion as Army HQ was totally focused towards the valley. This omission, however logical it may have appeared at that time, was to cost us IA badly, especially after the Pakistan-China ties warmed up.

India started to worry about the area only in the late 1950s, when trouble with China began brewing. Then it was discovered that holding Ladakh while simultaneously protecting the cease-fire line against Pakistan was a tough proposition, which it remains to this day.

Both in 1965 and 1971 there were no strategic gains in this sector. Fighting took place for piquets dominating the Leh road. In both cases India did better than Pakistan, because Pakistan depended on the ruggedness of the terrain and therefore had committed few resources. IA had large numbers of regular troops, Pakistan had none.

Coming back to mountain terrain.....
Take the example of 19 Division (IA).
If we conceive this sector as the left half of a lady’s Chinese fan, we see that the roads from the fan’s hinge (Srinagar) to the periphery (Uri, Tithwal, Gurais) are excellent, but that the links along the periphery are inadequate or non-existent. Thus, reserves from Srinagar and Baramula can be sent quickly to Uri, Tithwal and Gurais, but there can be no movement between these three sectors without first returning to the Valley.

This creates the worst possible situation for a military commander: his forces are deployed as long fingers and no finger can support the other. Each sector must fight its own battle and must, then, be correspondingly self-sufficient in forces.

Pakistan, on the other hand, has excellent lateral communications. It holds a shallow part of mountainous Western Kashmir with the plains behind. So it can switch forces and concentrate at will at any point along the line between Jammu and Tithwal.

This gives PA the initiative in the entire area.
Nonetheless, India holds one advantage not enjoyed by Pakistan. IA has to attack downhill, whereas Pakistan has to move uphill.

The complication in all the Jammu and Kashmir sectors is the political importance of the ground. No first strike can be countered without giving up some ground. In Jammu and Kashmir every square kilometre lost no matter what the reason is held against the commander with his superiors and their political superiors.

This unfortunate situation should have been corrected years ago.

The only remedy then becomes to over-ensure in each sector, and to maintain troops right on the line, holding every kilometre as closely as possible, even though this involves violating the principles of war relating to surprise and economy of force. There can be no economy or concentration of force because the enemy is aware of your compulsions to avoid giving up ground, and can, therefore, accurately predict your actions.

This, however, is only one of the two reasons (FOR IA) why such large forces have to be mentioned along LOC. The other, seldom openly stated, is the perceived need to contend with a hostile domestic population in wartime.

The battle will, then, be on two fronts. Take the example of 161 Brigade. Normally, it has the usual five regular and one BSF battalion. The Brigade commander, however, does not regard his forces as equal to 2/3rds of a division. He allots three infantry battalions, a normal brigade, to the front. And he allots the other three battalions to keep open his Line of Communications, with Baramula, 60 kms away.

So the commander, 161 Brigade has, from his viewpoint, only the minimum number of troops required for his job. Given the importance of the ground, we may speculate he would like a minimum of another regular battalion. And the Indian Army, at least, is no stranger to seven battalion brigades.

Because of the mountainous terrain, however, neither side is likely to achieve major gains. As a caveat it should be said that if one side makes a breakthrough for example, if Pakistan took Poonch or India took Kotli, depending on how panicked the defence becomes, it is possible the whole front will unravel and permit a strategic victory. But if both sides hold reasonably firm, neither side will make any strategic gain.

Mountain positions stoutly defended are virtually impossible to assault frontally. They are usually taken by a slow process of infiltration around the position, and then a surprise attack, say from three sides. Cutting roads behind and between positions is of the utmost importance. A brigade attacking battalion position can break through after some time, but not if reinforcements arrive. This not only takes time but, with active/aggressive patrolling the defender can prevent encirclement. The Central Italian campaign of 1944 is an excellent example of how difficult it is to take mountain positions. And, of course, the Italian mountains are quite geographically tame compared to ours.
 

arjunk

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For me our first objective should be Valley,an area where population supports us and which is easy as compared to Kargil area and Jammu
Alternatively, we could attack Kargil and Pathankot/Jammu while forcing the Indian army to commit troops for counter insurgency ops in the valley, simultaneously stretching their forces out and cutting their supply routes.

Supplying weapons to the valley will greatly increase Indian losses and destroy their morale. The valley will fall under anti India militant control similar to 1947 or Afghanistan. As long as there's no superpower distributing freedom packages it will remain so, and said militants will not turn against us.

OR we could even open a front further south on the IB while IA dedicates most of its troops to attack regulars and irregulars through the mountains.

Keep in mind they will have to keep many troops in Northeast India as well, because of the danger of attacking a CPEC project and pissing the Chinese off.
 

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