The Western Media Hogwash
There is a WhatsApp message floating around which contains the views of New York Times, Washington Post, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, Jane’s Information Group and Gulf News on the recent Balakot Strike. I do not know if the contents are authentic. This analysis is based on the premise it is true. If not; this is countering ISPR propaganda with some hard truth for Indian consumption. The sum and essence of the float is that we struck a deserted camp, Mr Modi had to show some demonstrative results prior to elections, the strike missed the target etc. The international media has dissected it. They are not buying India’s strike story. Well Well! We are talking of the same international media which dissected, bought and peddled the non-existent WMD story to the world. And of course, led a superpower and its poodle across the pond, into a war to destroy a nation. The same international media which glorified Pack-istan as its frontline state when it created the Mujahideen and followed it up with that Frankenstein called OBL? The same international media which dissected the role of ISI in the untimely but spectacular collapse of the twin towers and declared it innocent so that it could be nominated for the Nobel peace Prize? The same media which will pat their respective countries on their backs and clap gleefully when USA declares victory in Afghanistan. Will they also edify the pious role of Pack-istan and the good samaritaans in ISI and ISPR in aiding their dissection of the Balakot strikes?  
Sounds of Silence
Have the dissectors heard the” Sounds of Silence (chup)” from the otherwise virulently vocal elements in Srinagar? Or have they never heard about Simon and Garfunkel’s all time classic? Why were they never given a conducted beer and lunch site  tour of the Balakot Air Strike Failure by the normally hyperventilating ISPR who never misses a trick? They probably never had to do that since they probably had an Oxford return analyst in Balakot to fill them in on our collective national failure. They just insinuated that Mr Modi, Gen Rawat, Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa and Admiral Lanba and my fantastic uniformed comrades, under their respective commanders are an incompetent lot who do not know their jobs. Well my dissectors, they are the guys in whose hands I will place my life in. Not because of some fealty but because I know them well. Whatever they are,  they are not idiots in the “MAD” class to put 12 Mirage Pilots’ life at risk on a midnight mission to bomb a deserted camp deep in Pakistan. They are guys of high intelligence. I can vouch for it since the time the uniformed troika and I wore knickers and front rolled in NDA together (four decades back). In any case there were better ways to do firepower demonstrations. Please humour me and permit me to do a military analysis as taught to me by the Indian Armed Forces.
Military Analysis
Let us assume for a moment that the Balakot strikes were in thin air. Everything we did was demonstrative and ineffective. Fine.  Despite their tactical failure, the Balakot Strikes have clearly demonstrated the following: –

India is fed up of these national assets of Pack-istan – LET, JEM and HM etc etc. We will get them if they set up shop across – LOC or no LOC. I think India has come to the stage of playing the rationality- irrationality game. Try it out. 
      For some time now all terrorist incubators will leave the area and will be loath to come back into this belt. If they must operate it will be well from the interior. That implies longer lines of control resulting in lesser effectiveness. Gives India a window to sort things out. 
      Pakistani stooges in the Valley are now under a heavy scanner. Believe you me their space to operate will be reduced. No more hot lines to Pakistan. Their funding will be cut off. You see the national resolve has just gone up by a notch. Sitting in Chennai, I have been wondering why I should soft pedal and pussy foot around a pampered Kashmiri at the expense and hard work of the rest of my fellow Indians. You might not find the Kashmiris themselves that receptive to overtures from across the LOC. Distance sharpens your perspective.
      This incident has put India and Pakistan in a one to one mode. India might not allow Pakistan to play through the militancy game indirectly any more. I am sure a time bound retribution plan is being worked by someone in Delhi for every incident which happens in India.
      The Pulwama strike and the one on Iranian Army has given enough room for us to cooperate with each other. What is it called militarily? Pincer? Of course, Pakistani room in Afghanistan is going to shrink. A retaliatory strike from Iran has not yet materialized. I do hope Pakistan has a hardy GOC 12 Corps.
      The Abbottabad and surrounding areas are clearly going to be in everyone’s surveillance. That includes China. Their flag ship CPEC is in and around this area in a disputed territory. If there is a terrorist incubator around, I doubt if there will be any discussion. So? Action?  
      For a moment one should not think military options are off the table. The range and depth of strikes has enlarged. That too well below the threshold of the crown jewels of Pakistan.  
      One of the steps which the GOI should be contemplating after this is to declare some of the naughty guys as wanted DOA a la OBL. Then they are fair game. If one of them is knocked off in Pakistan, will the Deep State launch a nuclear attack on India? India also knows the art of deniability which Pakistan has taught us. But then Pervez Musharraf’s prediction might come true if they raise the stakes.    
      India will make Pakistan spend some of the money they do not have. If these actions continue, I wonder who will part with their money to bail out Pakistan?  The gold-plated weapon gifted presented to MBS must have cost a packet which Pakistan does not have.

I am sure all those Western intellectuals have read my poor reasoning. I am only an individual expressing an opinion. The official thinking will be very calibrated and more lethal.  One can wonder – what can India do? What was Balakot? National Resolve.  Even if 50% of this comes through Pakistan will crack. As it is, they have closed down their airports. Worried about an Entebbe type of operation to destroy the crown jewels?  One of these days the Western Naval Fleet might take a sail into the Arabian Sea innocently. What’s next. Closure of Karachi Port? Then that little stock exchange will pack up and tell you where Pakistan is going financially.
The Moral
 My fellow Indians, please do not fall for these hollow analyses. I also think the time has come for us to do things on our own. There is already a subtle shift. People are already wondering what the next kinetic action is. In any case we do not handle conflicts on journalistic opinions – International or National. Let the journalists report and do their trick. The Government and the Armed Forces will act as per the situation. I am confident of that; irrespective of the colour of their uniforms we are all Team India.      
My guess is that the deep state is plying its dirty trade of perception management. Remember even in that they are not good. Yesterday their PM came on air and said that two Indian aircraft were shot down and that they have two Indian Pilots. Later it became one aircraft and one pilot. Where is the second? Was he the F16 pilot and was it the F16 they were talking about? I think so. I do hope that brave pilot has not been too seriously injured or beaten black and blue by their villagers. I wish him good recovery.   
Let us look at the real deal. Pakistan took Wg Cdr Abhinandan as a POW. Videos of manhandling him went viral. Videos of his being questioned went viral. Pakistan paraded him in media; against Geneva Conventions. However, what came through was an Indian Armed Officer’s poise, steel and bravery.
Pakistan took a POW and returned to us a National Hero.

Thank you for the viral videos. 
 He will be a national icon for a long time to come.

The moral of this story.
Pakistanikku thakudal aarambika therium. Mudika theriyadu.
(Pakistan is very good at conflict initiation but poor at conflict termination).
 Media is a very potent two-sided weapon.
 Abhi tak nahi samjhe?

 One upright officer despite being ill-treated has morally terminated this sub conflict in India’s favour. Even Pakistani twitter handles went gaga over that!
Well done young man. We are proud of you and your parents.
My dear Western Media.
 I would suggest that you recommend to your respective countries to train their officers as we have done. They will be Role Models anywhere and everywhere.
Is that part of your analysis or Officers and Gentlemen exist only in the West?
The Pakistan Army lost half the nation five decades back.
It is sincerely attempting to do so with the remaining half now.
Jai hind


  1. The media weather it is foreign or local want only their TRP rating or circulation going up. They do not report the hard facts. It has been the case in the recent past.You have given a fitting analysis to those ill informed or vested interest media.

  2. A good analysis. Definitely there are many positives for India which will have long term effects on the future course of action.

  3. The indian journos, politicians and some foreign media were asking for rap. They got it.

  4. The air strike on the non military target at Balakot in Paks KP is like a tight slap on the face of the Deep State of Pakistan. Slaps rarely ever break bones, but hurt ego and are fatal for the self esteem. You are right in your analysis and also in trashing the conclusions of the Western Media which seems to be stage managed by Deep State

  5. Well written Sir. Much needed exposition to counter the shallow analyses floating around

  6. Very well summed up, sir. The biggest take for me from these strikes is a national shift in how we manage our international relations. Pussy footing and soft peddling on the K issue has not yeilded much in last 3 decades. Let's try out a well calculated game of nerves, to see who bats an eyelid…and I reasonably sure who would ! India, Iran, AF is big opportunity, to choke this ever nasty nation.

  7. Sir, An apt counter to the “Know All” western media constantly fed by some of our own journalists. I think the degree of damage caused in Balakote is immaterial and an Aim Plus, the mere fact that a sqn of our Fighter jets went deep into Pak hinterland and came back accomplishing it's mission, which has been acknowledged by them is hard to swallow for the Western analysts. It puts India in a league which is at par with them. We need not play to the gallery occupied by Western “Shooting in Thin Air” journos, I think the message has reached loud and clear to intended recipients.

  8. A well written military analysis Few hard facts which even Pakistan and world should know.1.The nuclear umbrella of pak is no longer available from Indian.2.In future such types of actions should be expected if pak hand is seen in destabilize India.3.Pak theory of 1000 cuts against India ends and they may have to go for new strategy.4.The terrorist camps will be in hinder land and widely dispersed making command and control more difficult.

  9. You are right in your analysis. The way Modi has given a free hand to the Armed Forces, very shortly Kashmir Problem will be history. Had Nehru given the same freehand in 1947 there would not have been a Kashmir problem at all.

  10. Brilliant article. Just read it. I have in my own way expressed the same feeling. But then the author is a retired army general. His assessment is spot on and spectacular. Agree 100%.

  11. Sir good analysis. My question is, how do you see Kartarpur talks in midst of all this? And hasn't the economic, cultural sanctions against Pak been half-hearted so far contrary to what you've been suggesting yourself.

  12. Well written Our Blessings are with the Magnificent men of our Armed Forces

  13. An absolute hit !! Lt .Gen. Shankar has nailed the lies of ISPR . Wg Commander Abhinandan went off the radar as a pilot and re-emerged as a nation's hero. It is time that the Pakis should realize that they lost one arm of their country within 25 years of independence . And will soon loose other organs if they continue with their charade .

  14. Please accept our wishes from Trading tips team for giving an unbiased analysis of the events and this will help a reader to arrive at a correct conclusion. Kudos

  15. Jaihind. Well done General. Sabhash. Hatsoff. I see a resurgent India with no nonsense please attitude. My salute to all those from PM down the ladder to the last man involved in Balakot episode. Gp Capt DK Dass VrC. +91 9849388642.

  16. I think this blog should get media attention .We are all so tired of the Arnab Goswamis and chest beating local politicians the media shows day in and day.I salute the author for articulating what any sane person would want to see from the govt.

  17. Both sides are on high alert, so militarily it doesn't make winning sense. A “kabbaddi-kabbaddi” incursion is for local consumption. Why did the Samjhauta express restart? Significant reduction in trade should be considered. They can sell more donkies to China, their masters and soon to be their overlords.

  18. Very well analysed and presented. I wish this article gets wide publicity

  19. Balakote was indeed a great success. It was overdue. India is now the third strongest military power after Russia and the USA much stronger surely than a very strongly Jewish backed Communist China. The nuclear program of tiny Pakistan is the hoax of the century. They have no Uranium ore and have a bomb or two from China (confirmed by Dr. Khan) and this has only psychological implications. Pakistan a tiny non-sovereign state is a proxy of some powers against the Indian giant but this game is now long over.India to realize her total potential must continue to arm herself both nuclearwise and conventionally. Use all her 1.3 billion manpower.Now coming to elections both the Congress and BJP are nationalistic parties but with great flaws. Undoubtedly Congress has done much for India in the past, however, now the Congress has become corrupt and is pushing one family on the Indian nation. This family has great genuine contributions to our motherland but is surely not our permanent leaders. Let Congress respect them and find a leader of the kind of experience, intellect, honesty and vision such as Dr. Manmohan Singh.The BJP remains a party of illiterates though they do have a very good Home Minister in Shri Rajnath Singh and a great Defense minister In Nirmala. However, the BJP must involve deeply honest, experienced, intellect Indian nationalists. All religions must be given full respect in the Hindu tradition while selectively terrorists liquidated without any mercy. Shri Putin a true good friend of India has done this with great success in Russia. The BJP could engage the Yehudi but never let them take over our system and push their agenda in to India. Let India now rise further as a powerful, enlightened nation. It is easy to achieve now if we put our act together. Need leaders of the caliber we had at independence.

  20. Yes, u have nicely put it. I Hav a friend in foreign media who visited Balakot in their conducted tour who has different story. Though they were not permitted to talk to local madarsa staff, the buildings appear to b in tact and not recently repaired. V must not thump our chest for killing>300 as ruling party claims. It's enough to feel happy that our Airforce could go as far as Balakot unoticed, unchallenged. May b next round v will land in Islamabad n do Abbotabad type of ops…….Arjun9811099344

  21. 'It puts India in a league which is at par With them' Sorry go back in history and you will find we were at par with them if not above. Countries have made and are making Indian soldiers monuments for helping them, saving them. Now with economy booming? ,technology coming and great person like PM Modi, just wait and see.

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