The recent conflict between India and China made the world compare the strength of the armies of the two Asian powers. According to some experts, the presence of thousands of tanks in the Indian ground forces does not yet give them an advantage in a real confrontation in the mountainous terrain.
Although fighting on the border between India and China has ceased, both countries do not stop preparing for a possible armed conflict. India is pulling additional forces into mountain Ladakh, China does the same. As it appears, the main hopes of the command of the Indian armed forces are connected with the use of the powerful potential of the Indian tank forces: T-90 Bhishma and T-72 tanks are going to concentrate on the border with China. Soviet-designed tanks are preferred, as they have shown efficiency in conditions of high altitudes above sea level.
Indian army tank units are stationed at key points in the province of Ladakh, including the Depsang plain. But will hundreds of T-72s and T-90s help protect the region from a possible Chinese invasion?? The methods of war are changing now, and the presence of a large number of tanks and other armored vehicles is no longer a defining advantage.
In mountain conditions, on difficult terrain, heavy tanks become almost useless. Even many high-ranking Indian military personnel in the past do not doubt this.. for example, Lieutenant General D.S.. Huda, formerly Commander of the Northern Indian Army, claims, that in an era of increasingly intensive use of aviation, especially unmanned, the role of tanks is significantly reduced.
As an example of a strategy fiasco, focused on tanks, General Khuda brings the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh, where the Azerbaijani army with the help of drones was able to achieve rapid dominance on the battlefield.
The general's reflections are also quite relevant for the Indo-Chinese conflict.. After all, not so long ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping, giving a speech on the People's Liberation Army of China, urged to move further in the development and testing of unmanned aerial vehicles. Not a secret, that the PRC also very actively intends to use UAVs in any potential armed conflicts.
Quite possibly, that in Ladakh, China will try to use the Turkish experience of destroying main battle tanks using drones. As is known, UAVs of Turkish production have proven themselves well in the wars in Syria, Libya, and now in Nagorno-Karabakh. For example, Soviet-made main battle tanks, and in India such MBTs are also in service, quite easily destroyed by unmanned aerial vehicles. Now the Chinese military considers the Indian T-72 and T-90 tanks as a weak link in the defense of Ladakh and, probably, on them, in the event of a conflict, and a strike by Chinese unmanned aircraft will be directed. Retired Indian soldiers think so, Noting, that it is the Chinese drones that can become the main threats to the tanks of the Indian Armed Forces.
China is already practicing the tactics of using a swarm of drones in the highlands of Tibet
Columnist Mansij Astkhan writes about, that the UAV MAM-L, along with the deadly Bayraktar TB2 drones, have had great success in destroying tanks, armored vehicles, infantry, air defense systems, enemy artillery. Of course, highly unlikely, that China will use Turkish drones, given the difficult relationship between the two countries, but we must not forget about the Celestial Empire's own developments in this direction.
China has tempting prospects to act against an Indian armored group from Tibet, launching drones, attacking and destroying Indian tanks. Hardly an Indian army, even with those generous appropriations, which New Delhi devotes to defense today, will be able to oppose something to such a strategy of the "Chinese comrades".
Also, do not forget about, that India is bordered by her nemesis Pakistan, which is simultaneously a military partner of China and in the event of a large-scale conflict, even if he himself does not fight with India, will be able to provide its territory for the needs of the Chinese armed forces. The same is true for Myanmar., long in the orbit of Beijing's political influence.
used photos:Indian Ministry of Defense / indianarmy.nic.in