Air Cdre Kaiser Tufail (Retd)

This is the second part of the post. It is from one of the chapters of the upcoming book “Air War-1971″

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Air Cdre Kaiser Tufail (Retd)

Looking at the grotesque disparity between the Air Forces arrayed against each other in the Eastern wing – one PAF combat squadron versus twelve of IAF – one cannot but agree that the idea of ‘defence of East lies in the West’ reflected a realistic appraisal of the grim situation by the Pakistani military strategists. With the PAF’s air element not expected to last beyond a day or two at best, and the outnumbered Pak Army hopelessly encircled by the Indian Army and Mukti Bahini, strategic compulsions demanded that a front be opened in the West at the earliest to capture Indian territory and redeem some lost honour.  Occupation of Indian territory was no less important from the point of view of bargaining the release of POWs that were bound to be captured in East Pakistan, en masse.  Sadly however, this line of thinking meant that the Pakistani forces in the East were sacrificial lambs and, would have to submit to the inevitable sooner or later.  The only challenge for the unfortunate soldiers, sailors and airmen was to delay the impending disaster as much as they could, in the dim hope of some miracle occurring on the geo-political front at the eleventh hour.  If ever there was a pathetic and despondent situation at the outset of a modern day conflict, the one faced by Pakistani armed forces in East Pakistan was beyond compare. Read more

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