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Opinion Op Ed 24 Jun 2020 A ‘thug’ ...

A ‘thug’ army meets ‘Made in India’ steel

COLUMNIST | P. R. SHANKAR
Published Jun 24, 2020, 6:52 pm IST
Updated Jun 24, 2020, 6:52 pm IST
The PLA obviously didn’t visualise casualties on the Chinese side, given that the advantage of surprise lay with them
The casualties on the Indian side were to be a warning sign to all who dared to challenge China. The calculation, purely arithmetical in nature, was to outnumber and swarm the IndiansThe casualties on the Indian side were to be a warning sign to all who dared to challenge China. The calculation, purely arithmetical in nature, was to outnumber and swarm the Indians. PTI Photo
 The casualties on the Indian side were to be a warning sign to all who dared to challenge China. The calculation, purely arithmetical in nature, was to outnumber and swarm the IndiansThe casualties on the Indian side were to be a warning sign to all who dared to challenge China. The calculation, purely arithmetical in nature, was to outnumber and swarm the Indians. PTI Photo

China’s PLA is not a professional army. It is a uniformed group of thugs which serve the Chinese Communist Party. The premeditated ambush of the braves of 16 Bihar at the Galwan Valley last week was planned to make it appear like a reckless Indian Army action, “valiantly” defended by the innocent Chinese.

The casualties on the Indian side were to be a warning sign to all who dared to challenge China. The calculation, purely arithmetical in nature, was to outnumber and swarm the Indians.

 

The resultant fatalities were a signal to the world that India was the aggressor and had breached an honourable agreement, interfering in the “peaceful disengagement” process.

The PLA obviously didn’t visualise casualties on the Chinese side, given that the advantage of surprise lay with them. But they didn’t factor in the ferociousness of the joint Indian counter-attack by 16 Bihar and 3 Medium Regiment, which left them gasping for air and led to the death and capture of several of their officers and soldiers.

What were 300 soldiers doing on a Himalayan ledge like goons on the Shanghai waterfront? It’s obvious the Chinese have no concept about the Himalayan terrain, where most casualties occur due to the environment rather than enemy action. The PLA’s overall behaviour has been so poor that it doesn’t befit a modern army or a great power. This action has only exposed its severe character and tactical flaws.

Despite grandstanding on propaganda videos, the PLA’s professionalism or lack of it of was on full display in a much-reported incident in South Sudan in 2016. When armed militias and drunk soldiers of the South Sudan army stormed a United Nations camp guarded by the Chinese army, the soldiers just fled, vanished into thin air without giving even a basic fight. Many female aid workers were sexually harassed and a few civilians killed. The PLA just knows how to target unarmed people and cannot face armed resistance of any sort.

Which nation or military hides its casualties? One that doesn’t have any honour, one that is outdone or one that fears the outcome of casualties it has suffered.

I find shades of all three in the PLA. It is dishonourable to carry out a premeditated ambush after an agreement to disengage has been reached. It’s not the time-tested code of a noble soldier or warrior, but the DNA of ignoble thugs. You plan an unethical ambush, outnumber the opposition and suffer casualties which you don’t declare.

The “wolf warrior” swagger adopted by the Chinese foreign ministry’s Zhao Lijian, and used to the fullest to defend his country’s incompetence in tackling the Wuhan virus, was absent in the ministry’s latest briefings.

The enthusiasm for giving out catchy headlines and false information was visibly doused.

China’s only outlet for English language “news”, a juvenile attempt at propagandising via Global Times, has been used to threaten India and push its fake narrative, but no one is buying it.

China has miscalculated badly by provoking the Indian Army. An army that has trodden the jungles of Kohima and Keran, braved German paratroopers at Monte Cassino, breached minefields at El Alamein – its troops have nothing to fear.

No puny Chinese soldier is worth even half the stature of an Indian soldier. The PLA soldiers should ask previous generations about the Indians, and they will reach beyond their graves and tell them to back off.

The slaughter of 1967 is something that China can’t forget in a hurry. China’s “deeper than oceans” friend Pakistan should have been the first to warn them. Don’t mess with Indians! From bloody nose to bloody ridge, Indians know the Pakistanis inside out, literally.

On Kargil’s formidable heights, where even the eagles don’t dare to fly, Indians have rooted out the Pakistanis like rats from their holes, and the Pakistanis are way better soldiers than the Chinese can ever be. They don’t stand a chance. Their generation is force-fed on WeChat propaganda, are herded into the PLA for a fixed period and are really cannon fodder.

They should know that in 1971, Captain Mulla of the Indian Navy went down with his ship in an awesome example of sacrifice and embracing death in the highest traditions of a soldier. If that is too ancient, one can go to recent examples.
Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman was captured by the Pakistanis in February 2019. The best comment about him came in a tweet from America: “If that dude sporting a moustache says he killed an F-16 then he did. After a dogfight, ejecting, being beaten up by the locals and interrogated, he complimented the opposition on the quality of their tea. Devil incarnate.”

Every Chinese citizen who is reading this should note what the PLA is up against -- unyielding hardened steel. Forget China’s propaganda videos.

Every Indian citizen should know who is defending them and against what. They should be proud that their armed forces are laying down their lives without a second thought to overcome all odds so that they can sleep well. The Indian soldier is the best in the business, irrespective of the colour of his uniform, for in his veins runs the blood of a billion-plus hopes and dreams.
 

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