India-Pakistan: November 10, 1999



Artillery fire across the India-Pakistan Line of Control in Kashmir left seventeen Pakistani and four Indian troops dead. Moslem separatists also killed nine Indian soldiers within Kashmir in several separate attacks, while losing nine of their own. 

November 9; Indian and Pakistani troops clashed on the Kashmir line of control, leaving ten Pakistani troops dead.

November 8; Western intelligence agencies are deeply concerned over the possible ramifications of the 12 Oct coup in Pakistan, particularly:
@ The Pakistani Army, with a penchant for military adventures, now controls the nuclear weapons.
@ The coup supporters include a strong Islamic fundamentalist element which is very interested in gaining control over the military for the long haul. While Turkey continually purges its Army of fundamentalist elements, the fundamentalists in Pakistan saw the coup as an opportunity to become so deeply embedded in the Army that they could never be removed.
@ Junta leader General Pervez Masharraf is politically and personally close to the Taleban leaders of Afghanistan, and to Osama bin Laden.
@ If followers of ousted PM Nawaz Sharif and intelligence chief Khwaza Ziauddin unite, this could lead to all-out civil war.--Stephen V Cole

November 7; Advanced Russian Technology Pitched to India: The Russians have offered to lease a squadron of Backfire-C bombers and 3 Ilyusin A-50 "Mainstay" AEW(Airborne Early Warning) planes the Russian counterpart to the US AWACS to India. If India decides to lease the Backfires it would indicate a change from the policy they've been following till now which is centered on the Russian SU-30MKI which fills multiple roles.  While the Russian AWACS is not as capable as the US one it would provide India with a significant enhancement in its ability to manage the air battle. Experience with AWACS has shown that it provides an incredible force multiplier. To date there has been no conflict where both sides had such a capability, the Iraqis never used theirs, nor has there been a conflict where US forces faced pilots and planes of capabilities similar to their own. However even in the very asymmetric conflicts that have occurred the value of AWACS has been significant. If nothing else it significantly reduces friendly fire incidents by providing clear indications of who is who. 

November 7; Russia has offered to lease three A-50 Mainstay airborne radar planes to India; the first could be delivered in December. The Russians are pushing the lease of a squadron of Backfire naval strike bombers, but taking the deal would disrupt India's strategic plan to concentrate on the Su-30MKI fighter.--Stephen V Cole

November 5; More violence in Kashmir killed twelve in several incidents. Four policemen, four civilians and four militants died, and many more were injured.

November 4; In a Pakistani town of Muridke, where the Islamic militant group Lashkai-o-Taiba was holding its annual gathering, three bombs went off over a period of three hours, killing at least two and injuring many more. Some 150,000 people were attending the gathering, for a group that fights Indian rule over Kashmir. No one took credit for the bombings. A similar incident occurred during last years meeting and was blamed on the Indian secret service (RAW) 


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