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Thread: Indian Defence News & Discussions

  1. #61
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Food for thought and maybe action since he has a second term.

    He had everything, but Modi missed a brilliant chance to fix the messy Indian military | The Print | Jul 14 2018

    The Chinese ask a trick question: We know who will man the hotline at our end, of course our theatre commander for all of our India frontier, from the east to the western extremity, through the centre. Who will be his counterpart at your end?
    Simple question

    See it this way. The Chinese have just one commander for all the forces confronting India. Commanders of all these forces answer to one man, and one headquarter.

    India, on the other hand, offers a diversity of options that might look quaint in story-telling, but is a military embarrassment in the 21st Century.

    In Arunachal and Sikkim-Bhutan, the Eastern Army Commander is in charge.

    In the Uttarakhand (central) sector, it will be the Central Army Commander.

    Himachal-Tibet border is the domain of the Western Army Commander and all of Kashmir and Ladakh further on, the Northern Army’s.

    Of course, the IAF will also operate through at least three of its commands, Eastern, Central and Western, and there will be the Navy too.

    Effectively, therefore, an array of at least eight ‘three-star’ commanders will be arrayed against one Chinese. This is no way to run a modern military.

    Who speaks to the Chinese theatre commander, as troubles have a habit of erupting at distant points along a 3,488-km borderline of continental dimensions? If it is the Director-General of Military Operations at Army HQ on the Indian side, the two militaries run into a protocol-equivalence issue. Does our entire Army’s DGMO talk to a “mere” theatre commander in China?
    My moment of epiphany came in a recent conversation with former Navy chief and a brilliant military mind, Admiral Arun Prakash, who pointed how, if “stuff hit the fan in Doklam” five different Indian commands will likely get involved and much will get lost in transmission and coordination if not translation while the Chinese PLA will act from one command, under one commander. Can we afford such chaos now, when wars are likely to be sharp and short?

    He also underlined how Indian armed forces are now divided in 19 different commands and “no two are co-located or co-purposed”. It takes a pause and some thinking even for a student of militaries to figure out this irrationality.

    Take a few illustrative examples.

    The Eastern Army Command, handling the China, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Myanmar frontiers, along with the northeastern insurgencies, is located in Kolkata.

    The Eastern Air Command, which should be co-purposed with it, is in a place which has never had an airstrip, nor will ever have one: In the beautiful green mountains of Upper Shillong. Even to fly quickly between Kolkata and Shillong you need to overfly Bangladesh.

    Why is it there, and not in Kolkata with its Army counterpart, ask the British.

    Eastern Naval Command, for sure is way south, in Visakhapatnam.

    The eastern sector may be a starker example, but it is no anomaly.

    The Western Army Command is in Chandi Mandir, on the outskirts of Chandigarh, while its counterpart, Western Air Command, is in Delhi.

    Why should it be so, and why should the IAF have both its chief’s headquarters and its largest command in the same city, five miles from each other, ask the British again, probably. I bet there are liaison officers from complementary Army, Navy and Air Force commands in each other’s headquarters, but that’s a far cry from commanders working close together.

    The Southern Army Command nestles deep inland in Pune while its operating area will largely be the Gujarat-Rajasthan desert with Pakistan.

    Its complementary IAF command will be South-Western, in Gandhinagar. There is, by the way, a Southern IAF Command in Thiruvananthapuram as well but its domain is more the peninsula.

    The Army’s South-Western Command is in Jaipur while its complementary Air Force HQs are in Delhi (Western) and Gandhinagar (S-W) if not sometimes the one in Allahabad (Central) too.

    If you look at the entire list, you’d find no exceptions to the “no two commands are co-purposed, co-located” rule.

    The only such is the tri-service command in the Andamans. Or the new integrated commands, strategic and the nominal integrated defence HQ in Delhi.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 01 Jul 19, at 03:57.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    He thinks 2 Su30's for the price of one Rafale is a better deal. He's referring to upgraded SU30s here or 'Super sukhois'. The other point is the lifetime costs of the Rafale in comparison. Ultimately 36 is too few to be of any use. We need more to be effective. Will we get them. If they are so expensive then how can we. Which begs the question why we got them in the first place. MBDA, maker of the meteor A2A missiles refused to integrate them with the Su30 or LCA. So Rafale it was. Whether this leverage with France you speak about is worth this cost.
    Afaik, (and I can be wrong) India bought them because the whole fighter program was hopelessly derailed, and the IAF was becoming desperate with the lack of modern fighters. And France refused (and very well, imho) the whole "we build, you are responsible" idea of the then indian government...

    So, buy 36 now and hope for mode in the future. But I doubt Dassault will acept the same idea, specially since the Rafale program seems to be in better shape than at that time, in terms of clients, both real and potential...

  3. #63
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    He thinks 2 Su30's for the price of one Rafale is a better deal. He's referring to upgraded SU30s here or 'Super sukhois'. The other point is the lifetime costs of the Rafale in comparison. Ultimately 36 is too few to be of any use. We need more to be effective. Will we get them. If they are so expensive then how can we. Which begs the question why we got them in the first place. MBDA, maker of the meteor A2A missiles refused to integrate them with the Su30 or LCA. So Rafale it was. Whether this leverage with France you speak about is worth this cost.

    https://bharatkarnad.com/2018/06/24/...ch-connection/

    That is the french nuke test simulator

    The advantage with the Rafale is i think is the faster turn around time. More sorties per day possible with the Rafale.

    An interesting user comment from one of his articles
    Went through the comments. We all know defense procurement is a mess. But, who will be flying those jets? IAF. So first we have to listen to the IAF, their requirements, then the government comes into the picture to play politics. Karnad doesn't say that 35% of Sukhois remain in the hanger due to spare parts and maintenance issues. Russian toys are like that. They come cheaper at the onset, but maintenance for a period of 20-25 years takes the cheaper tag away. If price doesn't matter, spare parts do.

    His argument is its an old aircraft. How potent it is depends what its up against. The Paks have had them for thirty years so how potent will they be against them. The JF-17 is a Chinese copy of the F16. That's what the Paks will use.
    I still don't understand that argument.

    I have a table fan from the 70s. The structure is alright, it still stands, the electric cables are working fine, and I get plenty of air. Now I want to replace the blades with a new set. The dealer told me, it would cover a distance of 5 meters more than what my old blades did. Plus, it has a switch, that when pushed, would make the fan rotate upto 90 degrees. I am not even buying a new fan. This is what the Mig-29, Super Sukhois, Mirages, Jaguars in the IAF's arsenal looks like.

    Another dealer gives me the same fan, with a little discount, but it is brand new. Should I go for it? Is it better than the ceiling fan of my neighbour? What should I do?

    I still need a good argument about the airframes, before I can debate on that.

    As about the JF-17, it was dumped on the PAF by the PLAAF. You know, the good thing about the Chinese is that they can sell anything. They'll dress up a dog and sell it as a lion.

    It would be interesting to compare PAF F-16s (C,D versions) with the one on offer to India. Missiles, radar etc.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  4. #64
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    It's clear to me now that the reason the govt pushed for the Masood designation is domestic compulsions. This is what we did, we isolated Pakistan.

    Let's go back to 2008. What was the give & take to get Saeed and three of his top cadres listed within a couple of weeks.

    That we don't attack Pakistan after 26/11 ? speculation by me

    The Americans would want that. What would China have wanted back then..no idea.

    When we look at these non public domain give & takes these designations come with a price tag. The end result which is what we hear seems trivial ie assets freeze, travel ban & arms embargo. Because we don't see the behind the scenes wheeling & dealing.
    Not only domestic compulsions, alienate Pakistan too. If we attack tomorrow, Paks will have little to no sympathy.

    Your speculation is correct. Post 26/11, the pressure on the government was immense. Talks on hotlines, US SecofState flying down to India. Meetings, cajolings, and I am not even talking about the Indian public mood which wanted war with Pakistan. Bangladesh was pissing its pants thinking what if those terrorists were Bangladeshis.

    We don't attack Pakistan and they get listed (mind you LeT cadres are still in Kashmir, and getting killed even today), the powers that be, rein in the Pakistan Army's terrorist misadventures against India. From a US perspective, WoT had to be won. China didn't want to lose face (in front of Pakistan) and they themselves feared the Uighurs could use 26/11 attacks as a script inside China. One thing to notice is, whenever there is a crisis between India-Pakistan, US takes the lead, and China hides behind the US and follows whatever stance the US takes. What does it tell you? I think it tells us that China is decades away from being the global policeman that it wants to be, because apparently they are not militarily ready, and only failed countries listen to them.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  5. #65
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlvfr View Post
    Afaik, (and I can be wrong) India bought them because the whole fighter program was hopelessly derailed, and the IAF was becoming desperate with the lack of modern fighters. And France refused (and very well, imho) the whole "we build, you are responsible" idea of the then indian government...

    So, buy 36 now and hope for mode in the future. But I doubt Dassault will acept the same idea, specially since the Rafale program seems to be in better shape than at that time, in terms of clients, both real and potential...
    Rafale's main purpose is strategic. Yes it comes with BVR missiles and what not, but it's main objective would be to sneak into enemy airspace and drop nuke payloads.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

    Loyalty to country always. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it - Mark Twain!

  6. #66
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Rafale's main purpose is strategic. Yes it comes with BVR missiles and what not, but it's main objective would be to sneak into enemy airspace and drop nuke payloads.
    Bharat's contention to that point is why not use a cheaper ballistic missile ? What are those Agnis good for then.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    #1. It was designed by a German, Kurt Tank, and ex-Focke-Wulf team members.
    #2. It was meant to be supersonic (Mach 1.5+), but could never fly at speeds beyond Mach 1, primarily because of its engines.
    #3. The engine was 'Orpheus 703' from British manufacturer Bristol Siddeley.
    #4. After India conducted its first nuke test, spares for the Orpheus were difficult to obtain, as also other better engines.

    So, India was dependent on foreign parts and engines then, India is dependent on foreign parts and engines now. Same shit, different eras.
    Compare with ISRO. We managed to develop rocket engines through sanctions and put missiles & satellites in space.

    But a Turbofan engine we cannot do ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    I still don't understand that argument.

    I have a table fan from the 70s. The structure is alright, it still stands, the electric cables are working fine, and I get plenty of air. Now I want to replace the blades with a new set. The dealer told me, it would cover a distance of 5 meters more than what my old blades did. Plus, it has a switch, that when pushed, would make the fan rotate upto 90 degrees. I am not even buying a new fan. This is what the Mig-29, Super Sukhois, Mirages, Jaguars in the IAF's arsenal looks like.

    Another dealer gives me the same fan, with a little discount, but it is brand new. Should I go for it? Is it better than the ceiling fan of my neighbour? What should I do?

    I still need a good argument about the airframes, before I can debate on that.

    As about the JF-17, it was dumped on the PAF by the PLAAF. You know, the good thing about the Chinese is that they can sell anything. They'll dress up a dog and sell it as a lion.

    It would be interesting to compare PAF F-16s (C,D versions) with the one on offer to India. Missiles, radar etc.
    The airframes will be fine. Today the Paks have JF-17's. If we get F16/21's we will have them for at least another thirty years.

    How long will the Paks be using JF-17's ? Will China give them something better. How will our F16/21's fare against this something better ?
    Last edited by Double Edge; 01 Jul 19, at 04:32.

  7. #67
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Bharat's contention to that point is why not use a cheaper ballistic missile ? What are those Agnis good for then.
    Why build SSBN's then?

    Nuke triad.

    Land/Air/Sea based deterrents.

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Compare with ISRO. We managed to develop rocket engines through sanctions and put missiles & satellites in space.

    But a Turbofan engine we cannot do ?
    With Soviet/Russian help.

    The airframes will be fine. Today the Paks have JF-17's. If we get F16/21's we will have them for at least another thirty years.

    How long will the Paks be using JF-17's ? Will China give them something better. How will our F16/21's fare against this something better ?
    F-16 in our inventory will make way for F-35 later. We also have our own 5th Gen AMCA, which will get a ton of help from the F-16 eco-system here.

    When China gives the Paks J-20s, we'll have on offer the F-35s, if we induct the F-16s now. India should not be late, like always, like S-400, then play the catch-up game. If we can develop the AMCA, we can save a ton of money on 5th Gen Stealth jets.
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  8. #68
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Why build SSBN's then?

    Nuke triad.

    Land/Air/Sea based deterrents.
    SSBN's are for second strike.

    Why use jets when ballistic missiles will do. They are land/air in one.

    If they're MIRV'd then its even more lethal.

  9. #69
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    SSBN's are for second strike.

    Why use jets when ballistic missiles will do. They are land/air in one.

    If they're MIRV'd then its even more lethal.
    American ICBMs are MIRV'd, why do they still use B-2? Forget about stealth, focus on the bomber part for now. Ballistic missiles are not classified as land/air in one. Ballistic missiles are land assets. They can be taken out in a first strike. When radars blip of incoming enemy missiles, it would take jets a min to be up on the air, not the same with ballistic missiles.

    Ballistic missiles have the least chance of survival in a pre-emptive attack.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    As about the JF-17, it was dumped on the PAF by the PLAAF. You know, the good thing about the Chinese is that they can sell anything. They'll dress up a dog and sell it as a lion.
    Actually no. The CCP tried to boost their Pakistani allies by giving them a production line to manufacture their own planes. To cut costs down, the CCP forced the China Air Force to buy 300 JF17/FC1s. The China AF Generals didn't like the bird, didn't want the bird. So, instead of buying and maintaining 300 useless birds that Chinese airmen did not want, the China Air Force simply gave the money they were going to spend on buying 300 planes straight to Pakistan. Where that money went, I have no idea but the price of the JF-17 has not dropped.

    In essence, the CCP gave Pakistan an entire air force assembly line free of charge.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    American ICBMs are MIRV'd, why do they still use B-2? Forget about stealth, focus on the bomber part for now. Ballistic missiles are not classified as land/air in one. Ballistic missiles are land assets.
    American ICBMs belongs to the USAF

    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    They can be taken out in a first strike. When radars blip of incoming enemy missiles, it would take jets a min to be up on the air, not the same with ballistic missiles.

    Ballistic missiles have the least chance of survival in a pre-emptive attack.
    Only if everything goes right for the attacker. Hint. It won't.

  11. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Rafale's main purpose is strategic. Yes it comes with BVR missiles and what not, but it's main objective would be to sneak into enemy airspace and drop nuke payloads.
    I would assume no such thing until I see the training and it won't be hard to see. Special munitions and release orders up the ying-yang as well as flights to properly drop the payload. Dropping nukes ain't like dropping dumb bombs.

    However, as an attack force commander, give me a smart bomb over a nuke. I don't have the friggin red tape and hoops to jump through to get weapons release. Also, if the bombs are smart enough, it's fire and forget. With nukes, it's fire and RUN AWAY - FAST!

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    His argument is its an old aircraft. How potent it is depends what its up against. The Paks have had them for thirty years so how potent will they be against them. The JF-17 is a Chinese copy of the F16. That's what the Paks will use.
    No, it's a stretched MiG-21 with side inlets and a F-16 style wing. The original project was called Super-7 as in Super J-7, ie Chinese MiG-21.

  13. #73
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    No, it's a stretched MiG-21 with side inlets and a F-16 style wing. The original project was called Super-7 as in Super J-7, ie Chinese MiG-21.
    hehe ok, maybe i should say F16 wanna-be then : D

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    American ICBMs belongs to the USAF
    My argument was ballistic missiles are land based deterrent, that make up the nuke triad, other two being air/sea-based deterrence.

    But, now that you've said it, why do American ICBMs belong to the USAF?

    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    Only if everything goes right for the attacker. Hint. It won't.
    If I read your argument correctly, not all ballistic missiles can be destroyed in the 1st pre-emptive attack. Mobile launchers, missiles hidden in mountainous caves etc make sure some of them are saved. If I am correct, another wave of preemptive (2nd) attack is necessary to destroy the remaining ballistic missiles, whenever eyes in the sky picks them up readying to be launched? My guts tell me this can be done with the adequate number of missiles, intel, planning, and preparation.

    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    I would assume no such thing until I see the training and it won't be hard to see. Special munitions and release orders up the ying-yang as well as flights to properly drop the payload. Dropping nukes ain't like dropping dumb bombs.

    However, as an attack force commander, give me a smart bomb over a nuke. I don't have the friggin red tape and hoops to jump through to get weapons release. Also, if the bombs are smart enough, it's fire and forget. With nukes, it's fire and RUN AWAY - FAST!
    Don't you think the IAF has done a dry run of that with the Balakote air-strike? How will you see the training, it's not like IAF jets will train over Canadian airspace. What do you mean here?
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  15. #75
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    Actually no. The CCP tried to boost their Pakistani allies by giving them a production line to manufacture their own planes.
    So, CPC gifted Pakistan a production line to manufacture their own planes. Own planes? What own planes? They can't manufacture a bicycle.

    To cut costs down, the CCP forced the China Air Force to buy 300 JF17/FC1s. The China AF Generals didn't like the bird, didn't want the bird. So, instead of buying and maintaining 300 useless birds that Chinese airmen did not want, the China Air Force simply gave the money they were going to spend on buying 300 planes straight to Pakistan. Where that money went, I have no idea but the price of the JF-17 has not dropped.

    In essence, the CCP gave Pakistan an entire air force assembly line free of charge.
    That money was spent on building the JF-17 assembly line in Pakistan I guess. I read somewhere that JF-17 kits are imported from China and assembled in Pakistan.

    You gave almost a similar argument earlier, not in detail, but my point still stands, the PLAAF dumped the JF-17 on the PAF because they found the jets inferior.
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