First published May 9, 2022, 9:08 p.m. IST
General Manoj Pande said that wars don’t have to be short or quick; they could somehow prolong the current conflict.
Indian army chief General Manoj Pande on Monday listed three lessons to be learned from the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war. Responding to a question from the media, General Pande said that wars do not have to be short or quick and could be protracted in a way like the current conflict is.
“…This has an important lesson for us. The relevance of conventional warfare remains. We see many platforms such as air defense guns, artillery guns, missile systems, rockets and tanks used in this war one way or the other,” he said.
“It also tells us that wars don’t have to be short and quick. It could prolong in a way that the current conflict is,” he added.
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The army chief added, “The second important lesson would be that we try to be self-sufficient in terms of weapons, armaments, equipment and spare parts from outside.”
“Increasing autonomy and reducing our dependence on external sources is an important lesson. We depend on certain weapon systems, particularly in the areas of air defense, rockets, missiles and certain tanks from Russia and Ukraine,” General Pande said, adding that “We have already started this in line with the ‘Make in India’ initiative as well as to achieve ‘Aatmanirbharta’.”
Speaking about the immediate impact, the Indian army chief said the supply chain of some spare parts and ammunition has been affected to some extent. However, he maintained that “we have sufficient inventory to last for a reasonable period of time.”
He also said the force is also considering some alternative mitigation measures and identifying alternative sources from friendly foreign countries.
“It’s also an opportunity – long term – for private industry to scale up production and meet requirements,” he said.
The third important question is the aspect of non-contact or non-kinetic warfare. The lesson came out loud and clear.
“The cyber domain, whether it is the information domain, we have seen that the battle of narratives has been used to gain an advantage over the adversary. We must increasingly focus on new domains of war, we focus on capacity building,” he added.
On Monday, Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said Russian forces were trying to “storm” the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol.
At the WWII Victory Day parade in Moscow’s Red Square, President Vladimir Putin said Russian troops in eastern Ukraine were fighting for ‘the fatherland’ as the Kremlin pursued its offensive in the Donbass. Putin also said the invasion of Moscow was a preemptive measure to ward off Western aggression.