Why India's forces are adopting 'grey zone warfare' as an art of war

It comes as no surprise that countries around the world are increasingly employing attack helicopters to seek and destroy targets, including targeting terrorist hideouts.

India focusing on dynamic response

Apart from strengthening its conventional prowess, India is focusing on a dynamic response along its western and northern borders that is below the threshold of an all-out war, Army chief Gen M M Naravane said.

Victory no longer rests on the ability to inflict massive destruction but on the ability to wrestle popular support from one's opponent, he said.

Terming it a "technological irony, Gen Naravane said the ISIS was far more adept in using social media for devastating effects as compared to the 21st-century armies of the US and the UK.

 

 

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The Houthi rebels attack on Riyadh airport and oil facilities in Saudi Arabia

Talking about a new phenomenon of showing military prowess below the threshold of an all-out conflict, he said, "The Houthi rebels attack on Riyadh airport and oil facilities in Saudi Arabia and closer home, the Balakot airstrike saw these short, intense and escalatory cycles of military activity in full media glare, where sophisticated information narratives played an equally important role."

For years, Indians were told that if and when the International Border (IB) between India and Pakistan is crossed it would escalate to a full-fledged war, the Army chief noted.

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'We have possibly entered the era of contested equality'

"Balakot demonstrated that if you play the escalatory game with skill, military ascendancy can be established in short cycles of conflict that do not necessarily lead to war," he said.

Naravane said, "We have possibly entered the era of 'contested equality', wherein technology will make unequals, equal. Perhaps that is already happening the battle wining factor in future combat may not be numerical equivalence but technological superiority."
"Brick and mortar military structures and capacities, will perhaps matter less; technological capacities in enabling domains like AI (artificial intelligence) and cyber will decisively tip the military balance," he said.
"The Army is embracing low-hang technologies and inducting them with speed into our units and formations.

 

 

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'Victory needs to be formulated'

The Chinese way of war, epitomised by thinkers such as Sun Tzu, has given a new lease and life to the concept of "non-contact or grey zone warfare", where one shed the binary approach to conflict, Naravane said.

He also asserted that the rise of non-state actors such as terrorists demands that victory in war is formulated in a nuanced manner.

"The rise of non-state actors, such as insurgents, terrorists, transnational criminal networks combined with greater focus on individual's status consequently demands that victory needs to be formulated and achieved in a more nuanced way," the Army chief noted.

 

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Lockheed martin MH-60 Romeo helicopters.

President Trump inked $ 3 billion worth 24 Lockheed Martin MH-60 Romeo helicopters with India giving the country's navy a big boost.

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The helicopters equipped with hellfire.

The H-60 attack choppers equipped with hellfire air-to-surface missiles can carry out surveillance as well as combat operations from naval carriers zooming into enemy territory within minutes.

 

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Countries around the world are employing attack helicopters.

It comes as no surprise that countries around the world are increasingly employing attack helicopters to seek and destroy targets, including targeting terrorist hideouts.

(Photograph:AFP)

The killing of Osama Bin Laden and Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al Baghdadi.

The killing of Osama Bin Laden by US commandos in Apache helicopters in 2011 and more recently the killing of Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al Baghdadi are a case in point.

 

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Attack helicopters carry out quick , deep strikes anywhere on land or at sea.

India may have used its Air Force jets to carry out strikes at Balakot last year but don't be surprised if the next offensive comes through attack helicopters if it wants to carry out quick, deep strikes anywhere on land or at sea against terrorists.

 

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Vietnam template is being carried out for killing and destroy operations.

Air Forces around the world are increasingly using the "Vietnam template" to carry out kill and destroy operations.

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Israeli helicopters carry out missions in Syria.

Israeli helicopters repeatedly carry out missions in Syria. Most recently it struck Syrian military positions in the Quneitra province in the Syrian Golan Heights with deadly accuracy.

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Choppers as an offensive weapon.

Israel has a potent "chopper strategy" to protect its border and uses choppers as an offensive weapon.

(Photograph:AFP)

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