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An attempt to unravel the dirty secrets behind terrorism
Facts about the 1999 India-Pakistan conflict in Kargil
FACT 1. Pakistan used 5,000 of its troops to infiltrate into various peaks in the Kargil sector. Some local "Mujahideen"
were used, but only as porters. The NLI troops occupied a total of 132 posts.
”An Analysis of the Kargil Conflict 1999" by Brig. (Ret) Shaukat Qadir of Pakistan Army
It says; "They were occupying 132 posts of various sizes. Whereas the total number of troops occupying these posts never exceeded
1000 (from all ranks),four times this number provided the logistical backup to undertake the operation. While the occupants
were essentially soldiers of the Northern Light Infantry (NLI),there were some local Mujahideen assisting as labour to
carry logistical requirements."
"Pakistan: The Eye of the Storm", Owen Bennett Jones pp 91-92
Jones says; When they speak off the record, however Pakistani politicians and army officers tell a very different
story, freely conceding that denials about Kargil were nothing more than barefaced lies. The Northern Light Infantry,
they admit, did cross the line of control. The truth is that, just as in 1947 and 1965, Pakistan tried to fudge
its offensive by saying it was carried out by volunteers and not regular troops. In reality, the Islamic militants
probably accounted for no more than 10 per cent of the total force and were given only portering duties. Not all of
them were from the NLI: some were commandos from the Special Services Group.
FACT 2. The PAF and PN were not consulted in the operation. The Pakistan Chief
of Air Staff refused to support the Army after he was informed of this operation.
From Shaukat Qadir's analysis;
"Soon thereafter ,the first formal briefing of the entire operation was made for the benefit of the prime minister in
April,in the presence of the other services. Since the CNS was on a visit abroad, the navy’s reaction was voiced
cautiously, but the CAS was openly critical and skeptical of the conclusion that India would not opt for an all-out war.
He also voiced the view that in the event of war, the air force would not be able to provide the support that the army
FACT 3. After the initial setback, Indian Army gained many tactical victories
fighting uphill despite the fact that the Pakistani NLI had dug in bunkers and were well stocked and armed.
From Shaukat Qadir's analysis;
"Under cover of fire, elements of 2 Rajputana Rifles captured what the Indians called ‘Tololing top ’,(Point 45907),the
most dominating height directly overlooking Dras,on 12 June. An adjacent post was captured on 13 June, and Tiger Hills
(Point 5140), another dominating height, fell on 20 June.
The army had continued to assert that no posts had fallen to the Indians,which reaffirms the contention that no effort
was made to explain such a loss, or why it could not recur. However, in this case, it appears that Sharif found the
Indian claims more credible than the Pakistan army’s denials."
"Limited Conflict Under the Nuclear Umbrella: Indian and Pakistani Lessons from the Kargil
Crisis " by Ashley J. Tellis, C. Christine Fair, Jamison Jo Medby of RAND Corp"
In the above publication, the authors, while discussing the various Pakistani views of the Kargil operation, write;
"A second common variant is that Kargil was a tactical success but a strategic failure. This view was also articulated
by a number of in-formants and has been reiterated in various articles. Shireen Mazari, for example, has written that
“the military aspect of the Kargil action was simply brilliant.” Later in the same piece she laments that India was able
to “turn a military defeat into a diplomatic victory . . . [and] that Pakistan was unable to translate a tremendous
military success into a politico-diplomatic victory.” Interlocutors who held this view asserted—often against the weight
of evidence—that the Pakistani Army’s operational performance at Kargil was flawless, and they in-variably concluded that
the Army’s attainment of strategic surprise at Kargil was in effect synonymous with the achievement of victory in the
campaign writ large. Since those who hold this view entirely neglect the fact that the Indian Army, once mobilized,
redeployed, and committed to eviction operations, actually secured repeated tactical victories—often against great
odds—throughout the concluding half of the Kargil campaign, they continue to claim that Kargil must be chalked up as an
operational victory for the Pakistani Army even if it otherwise appears to be an unnecessary political defeat for
Pakistan at large."
FACT 4. Pakistan Army endorsed the decision to pull back the troops after the operation failed.
”Pak army’s research and analysis is weak "
- An article by Pakistan Defense analyst Dr. Ayesha Siddiqa Agha in "The Friday Times" March 29 - April 04, 2002.
While examining the analysis by Brig. Qadir, Dr. Agha says;
"There is no mention of the Indian forces hitting back after they had taken the initial beating. There is also no
reference to the situation when the Pakistan Army had run out of manpower properly acclimatized to fight at such heights.
Reports suggest that during the last week of the operation Pakistan had to pull out men deployed at Siachin, leaving
positions there vulnerable to an Indian attack. Hence, it was in the Army’s interest to convince the prime minister to
negotiate peace with the adversary. The study, however, puts the blame squarely on Nawaz Sharif who, it is claimed, had
chickened out and gone to talk to the Americans and the Indians."
"Pakistan: The Eye of the Storm", Owen Bennett Jones
"Most insiders say…that (Gen.Musharraf) was in full agreement with Shrif’s decision to go to Washington.”
FACT 5. Pakistan Army lost 2,700 men in Kargil, thereby suffering a more
devastating blow than in the 1965 and 71 wars as all this happened in one small theatre of ops.
Vajpayee 'was ready to solve Kashmir'
"In his first ever interview since being deported from the country about 14 months ago, Nawaz lifted the curtain on the
events that led to his downfall in October, 1999 in an interview to Urdu daily Jang where he made no secret that Kargil
was a bigger disaster than 1965 and the 1971 wars because Pakistan lost over 2,700 soldiers.
The entire Northern Light Infantry was wiped out.
"When I reminded Musharraf of his claim that the operation will be risk-free, he replied that the Indians had resorted
to carpet bombing, which looked rather naive to me," he said. "Didn't you know that this will happen?" Nawaz said he had
asked his army chief. "Let me add here that Pakistanis fighting in Kashmir were without shelter, and some of the soldiers
in the bunkers and outposts had been exposed to the extent that they lost their skulls by the dozens. The Indians were
closing in on us when the Washington agreement was arrived at for an honourable pull back," he told the paper."