Monday, September 5, 2022

Do Indian Aircraft Carriers Pose a Serious Threat to Pakistan's Security?

India has recently inducted INS Vikrant, the South Asian nation's second aircraft carrier. This "indigenous" ship of the Indian Navy is powered by four American-made General Electric LM2500 marine gas turbines built in the US state of Ohio. It is a relatively small aircraft carrier with a displacement of 40,000 tons, top speed of 28 knots, cruise speed of 18 knots and 7,500 nautical miles (8,630 miles) range. INS Vikrant can carry up to 30 fixed-wing and rotary aircraft and 1600 sailors. India plans to equip it with Russian MiG-29K fighter jets and Westland Sea King helicopters, a British license-built version of the American Sikorsky S-61 helicopter of the same name. Does this latest addition to the Indian Navy pose a serious threat to Pakistan's security? Can Pakistan defend against it? 

Indian PM Modi Launched INS Vikrant Aircraft Carrier

In a 2017 paper for the US Naval War College Review, defense analyst Ben Wan Beng Ho discussed how India might use its aircraft carriers against Pakistan and how the latter would respond. Here are some key excerpts from it: 

"(I)t is doubtful that any attack force launched from an Indian carrier would pack a significant punch. “With aircraft available for strike duties barely numbering into the double digits, the Indian carrier simply cannot deliver a substantial ‘pulse’ of combat power against its adversary.”

“In any attempt to impose sea control in the northern Arabian Sea and to interdict Pakistani seaborne commerce by enforcing a blockade of major Pakistani maritime nodes, Indian carrier forces would have to devote a portion of their already meager airpower to attacking Pakistani vessels, thereby exacerbating the conundrum alluded to earlier. What is more, Pakistani ships are likely to operate relatively close to their nation’s coast, to be protected by Islamabad’s considerable access-denial barrier.”

Indian-American defense analyst Ashley Tellis has also raised serious questions about the Indian naval doctrine. He believes that the land-based fighter aircraft with refueling to extend range are a better option.  He also says that  aircraft carriers are highly vulnerable to sinking by stealthy submarines

There are lessons for the Indian military from Ukraine-Russia war. In April this year, Ukraine's Neptune anti-ship missiles hit and sank Moskva in Black Sea.  It was a large 10,000-ton guided missile cruiser of the Russian Navy that was launching cruise missiles on targets in Eastern and Southern Ukraine. It is the largest warship to have been sunk in action since WWII. 

Pakistan has recently showcased its anti-ship missile Harbah at DIMDEX 2022, a defense expo in Qatar. It  is a medium range ship launched subsonic cruise missile system capable of targeting sea as well as land targets in “all weather operation” at a maximum range of 280 kilometers, according to a report in NavalNews. The missile is fire and forget type. It relies on inertial navigation technologies with GPS and GLONASS systems. According to its manufacturer GIDS, the missile features the following guidance systems: a DSMAC camera, imaging infrared seeker, and radar seeker. More recently, Pakistan's ally China has successfully demonstrated its carrier-buster missile. A single round has to be slung underneath the fuselage. And its primary prey is likely to be enemy aircraft carriers. For this reason, it has been widely dubbed a ‘carrier killer’, according to Naval News

In a YouTube video, Indian journalist Shekhar Gupta noted that the Indian Navy hid its aircraft carriers from Pakistan Navy submarines in both 1965 and 1971 wars. He also recalled that Pakistani Navy warships destroyed Indian Naval Base at Dwarka in 1965, and Pakistani sub Hangor sank an Indian warship INS Khukri in 1971 war


Shahab said...

Not a major threat, but will be difficult for PN maritime patrol aircraft to operate without cover as the carrier air arm can reach out far enough for BVR engagements. PN substantial sub fleet would mean India will keep it away from Pakistani waters, making it a white elephant that needs protecting.

All in all ZDK-03 AWACs can provide the early warning needed so PN flyers can stay safe, depends on management/competence

PDF said...

An AIP capable diesel-electric sub having;
1. Multiple electromagnets designed to counteract own magnetic signature to Magnetic Anomaly Detectors.
2. Sonar-resistant coatings hull
3. Tower made of radar-absorbent materials.
4. Machinery on the interior coated with rubber acoustic-deadening buffers to minimize detection by sonar.
5. Exceedingly maneuverable due to X-shaped rudder and sail, allowing it to operate close to the sea floor and pull off tight turns.
6. Flank array for surviving in high threat environment like 039B.

Amjad M. said...

What is the possibility of a hot war between India and Pakistan?

High, Medium, Low or non existent?

Riaz Haq said...

Amjad: "What is the possibility of a hot war between India and Pakistan?"

Unfortunately Modi and his saffron brigade are very reckless. Over 90% of Indians believe nuclear war with Pakistan is “winnable”, according to a recent Stimson survey

Amjad M. said...

F**king idiots. There are no winners in nuclear war. Especially when there’s are neighboring countries.

These guys are nuts on high octane fueled by Hinduvta ideology.

They will bring a great civilization of India down because of their greed for power. I know many Indophiles here may not like the comment. But Hinduvta extremists are f***ed up and will do anything to harm non Hindus

For God sake they have been vandalizing and destroying Muslim candidates signs here in Silicon Valley.

Amjad M. said...

Their venom against their own fellow Indians in India would have not been a big concern but they are bringing their hatred in our backyard.

My secular Hindu friends are really worried

Shams N. said...

Aircraft carriers are sitting ducks.

This is what the WSJ had to say about aircraft carriers of all navies.

Russia has zero aircraft carriers but enough missiles that can stop, merely with its inertia, a carrier's mission, if not also turning the carrier's into smithereens when the explosive does explode within the 27 microseconds after it contacts the ship.

Riaz Haq said...

Amjad: "Their venom against their own fellow Indians in India would have not been a big concern but they are bringing their hatred in our backyard"

The Edison bulldozer scandal is a wake-up call for people to learn about Hindutva hate | Opinion by Audrey Truschke

A bulldozer — celebrating far-right Hindu nationalist violence against Muslims — drove through the streets of Edison, last month at an Indian Independence Day parade. Many New Jersey politicians were present and claim to have been unaware of the bulldozer’s appalling symbolism of praising, even encouraging, the violent oppression of Indian religious minorities.

The backlash is continuing to grow, including calls for the organizers to be held accountable (they have since apologized) and for more people to learn about Hindutva hate.

For many New Jerseyans, the Edison bulldozer scandal is the first time that they have heard about the intolerant ideology of Hindu nationalism, also known as Hindutva or Hindu supremacy. But it is unlikely to be the last time.

I have been studying global Hindu nationalism for years, including a recent focus on Hindu Right goals and tactics in the United States. America, especially New Jersey, is a stronghold for Hindu nationalist groups who provide financial support and ideological guidance for the larger global movement. This extremist ideology — which has roots in early 20th-century European fascism — has flourished for decades, largely unchecked, in our state and has had many harmful consequences.

Hindu nationalists propagate their intolerant ideas in the United States through a network of organizations. Some of the most common include the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS), the Vishwa Hindu Parishad-America (VHPA), and the Hindu Students Council (HSC). Sometimes a Hindu nationalist group registers as a foreign agent, such as Overseas Friends of BJP, which promotes the interests of India’s far-right ruling party. More commonly, Hindu nationalist groups try to spread and normalize their extremist ideas under the ruse of promoting Indian culture, such as at the Edison parade.

In the recent parade, the celebration of human rights violations was merely symbolic, but it is sometimes far more visceral for New Jersey communities. In 2021, federal agents raided a Hindu temple in Robbinsville, New Jersey and found Dalit men—who are at the bottom of a hierarchy of social oppression known as the caste system—held in bonded labor. Governor Murphy joined the many who condemned the “horrific, unfathomable” conditions of modern-day slavery. What he did not note is that the Hindu temple, part of the BAPS denomination, has strong ties with India’s Hindu nationalist BJP government. As of now, a case is pending in federal court in New Jersey that accuses BAPS of human trafficking in multiple states.

Hindu nationalists regularly attack lots of people—including Dalits, Christians, and the many Hindus who oppose Hindutva—but Muslims are their most common targets. In India, Muslims are subjected to daily violence and harassment, an abysmal situation documented by human rights groups such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the United States International Commission on Religious Freedom (USCIRF). In 2022, USCIRF recommended India for sanctions for the third year in a row due to rapidly worsening conditions in the country, especially attacks on Muslims.











M. Khan said...

I don't understand why India needed an aircraft carrier. Do they want the world to know they are one of a handful of nations capable of building one? India will always remain a regional power. Unlike colonial powers like Britain or France of the last century, which controlled colonies far from their lands, India is not a colonial power; one can understand why colonial powers constructed and included aircraft carriers in their fleets. But for India, I do not see any viable reason to have aircraft carriers. Based on what I understand, they have unnecessarily wasted their time, energy, and effort building something they are likely to keep confined to their shores. I'm sure they would never dare venture into Pakistani waters, where they may become prey to our submarines and fighter planes.

Anonymous said...

^ Indians have kept their country together,industrialized and educated well the top 10% of their population.Their leadership is smart even IK says so publicly and loudly.

Inertia alone will make them a big 4 (China US EU India) economy by 2030.Future is bright.

Aircraft Carrier is to eventually project power in the middle east which will become a gigantic Yemen once the world transitions away from oil.

Pakistan thanks to massive PKR depreciation is not even a top 50 economy and likely will not be by 2030.Its future is bleak.

Riaz Haq said...

Anon: "Inertia alone will make them a big 4 (China US EU India) economy by 2030.Future is bright"

Modi's Hindutva fascism and politics of division are the biggest threats facing India today.

Watch Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen and ex PM Manmohan Singh:

Anon: "Pakistan thanks to massive PKR depreciation is not even a top 50 economy and likely will not be by 2030.Its future is bleak."

Purchasing power parity GDP does not depend on exchange rates. It represents real economic activity/output in a country.

Economic Survey of Pakistan 2021-22 confirms that the nation's GDP grew nearly 6% in fiscal year 2021-22, reaching $1.62 Trillion in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP). It first crossed the trillion dollar mark in 2017. In nominal US$ terms, the size of Pakistan's economy is now $383 billion. The country's per capita income is $1,798 in nominal terms and $7,551 in PPP dollars.

Anonymous said...

Annon "Its future is bleak."

Yawn, same old 75 Year old crap.

So, India that was 6th largest economy in 1947 has become 5th larges, congratulations. And the country that couldn't even make toothpaste in 1947 is making and selling airplanes.

Btw, why is your country 104th on hunger index? why is your gini index so low and why the suicide rate higher than Pakistan?

G. Ali

Anonymous said...

Riaz Haq said...

While keeping one eye on Pakistan, India’s strategic focus has increasingly been on China and its dramatic military expansion, with the People’s Liberation Army Navy, or PLAN, being the main beneficiary. Numerically, it is now the largest navy in the world, with all its ships now designed and built in Chinese shipyards. New designs are being developed at record speeds as China’s navy increases its power and reach to become a truly global force.

India is working hard to develop its own navy as a counter to China’s expansion as tensions between the two countries have risen, recently in the Doklam plateau on the borders of India, China and Bhutan, but also now that India has become a member of the four-nation maritime organisation, the QUAD, aimed at countering China’s influence.

Indian strategists are increasingly focused on what it will take to defeat China in a future naval conflict. Aircraft carriers will play a part in that conflict, but their designs have to be able to stand up to powerful weapons systems coming online. In short, long delays risk obsolescence.

The Vikrant, whilst a milestone for India’s military indigenisation programme, is an older design that is already almost out of date. It is better compared to China’s own first domestically-made aircraft carrier, the Shandong, commissioned in 2019. Both are modified Soviet-era designs.

At about 45,000 tonnes, the Vikrant is even smaller than the older Shandong and both carriers use the older technology “ski-jump” design to give aircraft taking off a much-needed lift.

The Vikrant and Shandong have both been important ships in terms of allowing local designers to develop their own ideas and start to think independently in terms of naval design and manufacture. However, India has been much slower than China in designing these huge warships.

The Vikrant is a generation behind the design of China’s latest aircraft carrier the high-tech Fujian, launched in June. The first supercarrier to be built outside the United States, it is far larger than the Vikrant, will be able to hold more aircraft, and most importantly uses an electromagnetic system to slingshot aircraft at takeoff. This allows the Fujian to launch far heavier aircraft, laden with weapons and fuel, at a far faster rate than the Vikrant.

The Vikrant’s ski-jump system forces its jets to launch to take off under their own power, which limits the amount of fuel, missiles and bombs the jets can carry. All this means a shorter range for its jets, the length of the Vikrant’s “punch” being significantly shorter than that of the Fujian. In a conflict between carriers, the Vikrant would be significantly outgunned and vulnerable to destruction.

The Vikrant’s woes do not stop there. The ship’s Russian Aircraft Flight Complex, the electronic suite the Vikrant uses to detect and manage the ship’s aircraft when in the air, has had installation issues and is proving hard to integrate into the mostly-Indian design. Planned visits by Russian technicians could be held up because of US-led sanctions imposed on Russia due to the war in Ukraine, further delaying the carrier’s completion.

The Vikrant’s air wing will be made up of Russian MiG-29Ks that are used on its sister ship the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya. On paper, these MiGs, adapted for carrier use, seem capable. But the jets have proven unreliable and are heavy, making takeoff and landing risky. The Indian navy is now looking for more advanced aircraft, with France’s Rafale M and the US-made F/A-18 Super Hornet being the likely choices.

Ameer A. said...

What the hell is this? A sitting duck with a WWII design profile.

Riaz Haq said...

As the world lurches through the growing pains of massive geopolitical change, the US’ relationship with India will increasingly take center stage. Washington likes to see itself as providing a geopolitical center of gravity that is inherently attractive to nations like India, especially against regional competitors such as China. As the US is about to discover, however, India and China have a shared ambition about who should dominate the Pacific in the coming century, and it doesn’t include the US. Op Ed by Scott Ritter

On Aug. 19, India’s minister of external affairs, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, gave a speech at a university in Thailand where he stated that relations between India and China were going through “an extremely difficult phase” and that an “Asian Century” seemed unlikely unless the two nations found a way to “join hands” and start working together.

For many observers, Jaishankar’s speech was taken as an opportunity for the US to drive a wedge between India and China, exploiting an ongoing border dispute along the Himalayan frontier to push India further into a pro-US orbit together with other Western-leaning regional powers. What these observers overlooked, however, was that the Indian minister was seeking the exact opposite from his speech, signaling that India was, in fact, interested in working with China to develop joint policies that would seek to replace US-led Western hegemony in the Pacific.

Struggle for Leadership

More than six decades ago, then-US Senator John F. Kennedy noted that there was a “struggle between India and China for the economic and political leadership of the East, for the respect of all Asia, for the opportunity to demonstrate whose way of life is the better.” The US, Kennedy argued, needed to focus on providing India the help it needed to win that struggle — even if India wasn’t asking for that help or, indeed, seeking to “win” any geopolitical contest with China.

Today, the relationships between the US, India and China have matured, with all three wrestling with complex, and often contradictory, policies that are simultaneously cooperative and confrontational. Notwithstanding this, the US continues to err on the side of helping India achieve a geopolitical “win” over China. One need only consider the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, or “Quad,” conceived in 2007, but dormant until 2017, when it was resurrected under US leadership to bring together the US, Japan, Australia and India in an effort to create a regional counterweight to China’s growing influence.

There was a time when cooler heads cautioned against such an assertive US-led posture on a regional response to an expansive, and expanding, Chinese presence in the Indo-Pacific region. This line of thinking held that strong Indian relationships with Tokyo and Canberra should be allowed to naturally progress, independent of US regional ambitions.

These same “cool heads” argued that the US needed to be realistic in its expectations on relations between India and China, avoiding the pitfalls of Cold War-era “zero-sum game” calculations. The US should appreciate that India needed to implement a foreign policy that best met Indian needs. Moreover, they argued, a US-Indian relationship that was solely focused on China would not age well, given the transitory realities of a changing global geopolitical dynamic.

The Asian Century

The key to deciphering Jaishanker’s strategic intent in his Thailand comments lay in his use of the term “Asian Century.” This echoed the words of former Chinese reformist leader Deng Xiaoping, who, in a meeting with former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1988, declared that “in recent years people have been saying that the next century will be the century of Asia and the Pacific, as if that were sure to be the case. I disagree with this view.” Deng went on to explain that unless China and India focus their respective and collective energies on developing their economies, there could, in fact, be no “Asian Century.”

Riaz Haq said...

Ukraine Routs Russian Forces in Northeast, Forcing a Retreat
Russia acknowledged that it had lost nearly all of the northern region of Kharkiv after a blitzkrieg thrust by Ukrainian fighters.

Stunned by a lightning advance by Ukrainian forces that cost it over 1,000 square miles of land and a key military hub, Russia on Sunday acknowledged that it had lost nearly all of the northern region of Kharkiv after a blitzkrieg thrust that cast doubt on a premise — widely held in Moscow and parts of the West — that Ukraine could never defeat Russia.

Russia’s pell-mell retreat from a wide section of Ukrainian territory it seized in the early summer rattled Kremlin cheerleaders and amplified voices in the West demanding that more weapons be sent to Ukraine so that it could win.

Victory for Ukraine is still far from certain, particularly with a second Ukrainian offensive in the south making far less rapid progress. Russian forces are dug into strong defensive positions near the Black Sea port city of Kherson, forcing Ukrainian troops to pay heavily for every foot of territory they retake.

But the speed of Ukraine’s advances over the weekend in the northeast — an area used by Russia as a stronghold — has muted the gung-ho bluster of Kremlin cheerleaders. It has also undermined arguments in places like Germany that providing more and better arms to Ukraine would only lead to a long and bloody stalemate against a Russian military destined to win.

Late Sunday, in a strike that Ukrainian officials condemned as a fit of pique over its losses, Moscow attacked infrastructure facilities in Kharkiv, leaving many civilians without power and water. President Volodymyr Zelensky said there was a “total blackout” in the regions of Kharkiv and Donetsk.

“No military facilities,” he wrote on Twitter. “The goal is to deprive people of light and heat.”


Speaking at a news conference with his German counterpart, Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said, “And so I reiterate: The more weapons we receive, the faster we will win, and the faster this war will end.”


For months now, administration officials have said there is no hope of a diplomatic solution to the war unless Mr. Zelensky’s forces win back enough territory to have the upper hand in any negotiated cease-fire or armistice. But the fear is that if Mr. Putin believes he is losing the war, he may deploy unconventional weapons.

Riaz Haq said...

Harpoon Horror! US ‘Confirms’ Russian Vessel That Was Sunk By Ukraine In June Was Fired From Flatbed Truck

As Ukraine has received its first batch of truck-mounted Harpoon Anti-Ship Missiles (AShM) from the US, its top defense acquisition official said Russia’s Vasily Bekh support vessel was sunk on June 17 by a version of the missile fired from a flatbed truck.

This comes in the backdrop of Ukraine receiving the first batch of vehicle-mounted Harpoon missiles, which US officials said their Ukrainian counterparts consider essential for their coastal defense.

Secretary of Defense, Llyod Austin, announced the road-mobile Harpoons on June 15 as a part of a $650 million Ukraine Security Assistance fund.

US & Allies Team Up To Arm Ukraine
The Harpoon weighs under 700 kilograms and flies at subsonic speeds with a 225-kilogram fragmentation warhead at ranges of 90 to 220 kilometers (536 miles). It has a diameter of 34.4 centimeters and is about 12 feet long.

Following the sinking of the Vasily Bekh, Russia itself claimed to have destroyed Harpoons on July 18 and July 24. In the former, it claimed to have struck an “industrial enterprise” in Odesa that stored the missile. The second strike declared the sinking of a Ukrainian warship and Harpoon missiles in the Odesa port.

In a background briefing call with journalists in June after the package’s announcement, unnamed Department of Defense (DoD) and Pentagon officials surprisingly claimed that the missiles did not come from the US but its allies.

“For Harpoon systems specifically, working with allies and partners, we will provide truck-mounted launch capability and then supported by donations from other allies and partners,” the official added. Thus, combined efforts (from friendly nations) will support these two capabilities (launcher and rockets), with the launchers coming from the US and the missiles coming from NATO allies.

The consternation about not depleting their inventory in support of Ukraine worries the US military leadership. This is because the Pentagon officials said they are “pushing” such systems “to the front quickly” only after “taking into account other considerations such as their (own) readiness.”

Ukraine has long asked for long-range artillery, like more M-777 lightweight towed artillery (which Russia has claimed to have destroyed in large numbers).

Installing Harpoons From A Ship To A Truck
Speaking at the press conference, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Bill LaPlante, recalled the ad-hoc mid-June arrangement that involved taking the Harpoons off a ship and putting them on flatbed trucks.

“We got them off the ship, put the Harpoons, the modules on the flatbed truck, and then a different flatbed truck for the power source, connected a cable between it, figured out was exportable,” LaPlante was quoted as saying by Defense One. On June 17, Russia’s Vasily Bekh support ship was sunk. A week later, Pentagon said the ship was sunk using a Harpoon.

While LaPlante did not disclose the country the missiles were taken from, it is likely to have been Denmark, as Ukraine had said on June 9 about having deployed Harpoons from the Scandinavian country. “So, this is a capability that provides them significantly stronger deterrence,” the official was quoted in the transcript of the call released by the DoD.

The official also said the Ukrainians have ranked coastal defense “at the top of their list of urgent needs.”

He also responded to a query by a journalist on what appeared to be a minimal number of only two such systems. “(That’s) because of what’s readily available that industry has that can be supplied in the near-term process to, again, make and have an effect on the near-term on the battlefield,” the official said.

US has procured the Harpoon launchers through a Request for Information (RFI) tendering process. This will “marry up with allies and partners with missile capabilities.”

Riaz Haq said...

Providing impetus to “Aatmanirbharta” (self-reliance) in defence production, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) signed a contract on Thursday with the Indo-Russian joint venture (JV) – BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited (BAPL) – for buying the latest version of the BrahMos missile for its newest warships.

So far, BrahMos missiles have had a range of 295 kilometres, in order to adhere to the parameters of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), which restricts missile sales involving a non-MTCR country to a maximum range of 300 km.

However, with India’s admission into the MTCR, a new generation of BrahMos missiles, with ranges of 400 km and more, can legitimately be built by the Indo-Russian JV.

The surface-to-surface BrahMos missiles were bought for “an overall approximate cost of ₹1700 crore under the Buy-Indian category,” stated the MoD on Thursday.

These new BrahMos missiles will be “dual-role capable”, announced the navy, which means that its warships can fire them at targets on land, as well as at enemy warships.

“It is notable that BAPL [is] making a crucial contribution to augment the new generation surface-to-surface missiles (SSMs) with enhanced range and dual role capability for land as well as anti-ship attacks,” stated the MoD after signing the contract.

“These missiles are going to significantly enhance the operational capability of Indian Navy (IN) fleet assets,” it said.

BrahMos Aerospace JV was established through an Indo-Russian Inter-Government Agreement (IGA) in February 1998 for designing, developing, producing and marketing the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile.

The JV’s share capital of $250 million was contributed by India and Russia in the ratio of 50.5 per cent and 49.5 per cent respectively. The share capital was enhanced by $50 million to pay for developing the aircraft version of the missile, which is fired from the Sukhoi-30MKI fighter.

Additionally, the Defence R&D Organisation also contributed Rs 370 crores towards the infrastructure, technologies and production facilities for building the missile system.

Riaz Haq said...

Istanbul Naval Shipyard Launches MILGEM Corvette “PNS KHAIBAR” For Pakistan Navy
On Nov. 25, 2022, the PN MILGEM-class corvette PNS Khaibar (282) was ceremonially launched for the Pakistan Navy at Turkiye's Istanbul Naval Shipyard. "Khaibar" is the third corvette under construction but is expected to be the second ship delivered.

Three important events took place at the Istanbul Naval Shipyard. The primary event was the launching of the third PN MILGEM corvette for the Pakistan Navy, the future PNS Khaibar (282). Following the ceremony, the keel of the first Hisar-class offshore patrol vessel, the future TCG Akhisar (P-1220), was laid and the first steel of the second OPV (P-1221 – TCG Kochisar) was cut.

The ceremony was attended by high-ranking representatives of both countries. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was the chief guest at the ceremony, while Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sherif and Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar, as well as high-ranking officers of the two navies, were other guests VIP.

In his speech, President Erdogan highlighted Turkish-Pakistani relations in the field of defense industry in recent years. He also stated that Turkey will realize significant developments in the defense industry within the next year.

President Erdogan also remarked that the 4th corvette of the PN MILGEM project will be delivered to Pakistan in February 2025.

After the launching ceremony, the keel of the lead vessel of the Hisar-class OPV was laid, and the construction of the second OPV has officially begun.

In July 2018, a contract was signed between the Military Factory and Shipyard Management Corporation (ASFAT) of Turkey and the Pakistani National Defense Ministry Ammunition Production and Karachi Shipyard for the construction of four Milgem class vessels based on Turkish Ada-class design. Turkish defence minister at the time, Nurettin Canikli, described the deal as “the largest defense export of Turkey in one agreement.”

The contract entails the construction of two corvettes in Turkey and two at Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works (KS&EW). The contract has also provisions for the transfer of design rights and construction know-how from Turkey to Pakistan.

N MILGEM Program consists of 4 ships, 2 ships will be built in Istanbul Shipyard Command and 2 ships will be built in KSEW. The program started on 11 March 2019. The deliveries of the ships, which will be able to perform all kinds of military duties from air defense to submarine defense, are expected to be made at six-month intervals starting from August 2023.

The exact configuration of the Pakistan Milgem-class ships has not been made public yet. During the Aman Naval Exercise held in February 2019, Admiral Abbasi said that Pakistan ships will be fitted with a 16-Cell VLS behind the main gun. It is expected that the Babur-class corvettes will be armed with MBDA’s Albatros NG air defence system and Harbah Anti-ship and land attack missiles.

The propulsion system for all the MILGEM ships consist of one LM2500 gas turbine in a combined diesel and gas turbine configuration with two diesel engines; total propulsion power is 31,600 kilowatts.

Turkey’s Ada-class are multipurpose corvettes able to conduct a wide a range of missions, including reconnaissance, surveillance, anti-submarine warfare, surface-to-surface and surface-to-air warfare.

Key data:

Displacement: 2,926 tonnes
Length: 108.2 m
Beam: 14.8 m
Draft: 4.05 m
Propulsion: CODAG
Max speed: 31 knots
Range: 3500 nautical miles
Endurance: 15 days at sea
Crew: 93+40

Riaz Haq said...

#America’s Bad Bet on #Modi.
#Delhi Won’t Side With #Washington Against #Beijing. #India’s significant weaknesses versus #China, & its inescapable proximity to it, guarantee that Delhi will never involve itself in any #US confrontation with Beijing. #BJP

by Ashley Tellis

For the past two decades, Washington has made an enormous bet in the Indo-Pacific—that treating India as a key partner will help the United States in its geopolitical rivalry with China. From George W. Bush onward, successive U.S. presidents have bolstered India’s capabilities on the assumption that doing so automatically strengthens the forces that favor freedom in Asia.

The administration of President Joe Biden has enthusiastically embraced this playbook. In fact, it has taken it one step further: the administration has launched an ambitious new initiative to expand India’s access to cutting-edge technologies, further deepened defense cooperation, and made the Quad (Quadrilateral Security Dialogue), which includes Australia, India, Japan, and the United States, a pillar of its regional strategy. It has also overlooked India’s democratic erosion and its unhelpful foreign policy choices, such as its refusal to condemn Moscow’s ongoing aggression in Ukraine. It has done all of this on the presumption that New Delhi will respond favorably when Washington calls in a favor during a regional crisis involving China.


India’s priority has been to receive American assistance in building up its own national capabilities so it can deal with threats independently. The two sides have come a long way on this by, for example, bolstering India’s intelligence capabilities about Chinese military activities along the Himalayan border and in the Indian Ocean region. The existing arrangements for intelligence sharing are formally structured for reciprocity, and New Delhi does share whatever it believes to be useful. But because U.S. collection capabilities are so superior, the flow of usable information often ends up being one way.


The fundamental problem is that the United States and India have divergent ambitions for their security partnership. As it has done with allies across the globe, Washington has sought to strengthen India’s standing within the liberal international order and, when necessary, solicit its contributions toward coalition defense. Yet New Delhi sees things differently. It does not harbor any innate allegiance toward preserving the liberal international order and retains an enduring aversion toward participating in mutual defense. It seeks to acquire advanced technologies from the United States to bolster its own economic and military capabilities and thus facilitate its rise as a great power capable of balancing China independently, but it does not presume that American assistance imposes any further obligations on itself.

As the Biden administration proceeds to expand its investment in India, it should base its policies on a realistic assessment of Indian strategy and not on any delusions of New Delhi becoming a comrade-in-arms during some future crisis with Beijing.

Riaz Haq said...

Chinese shipyard delivers final two Type 054 A/P frigates to Pakistan Navy - Naval News

On May 10, 2022, China's Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard delivered the final two Type 054A/P frigates to the Pakistan Navy with a ceremony held in Shangai, China.


The contract for four multi-role frigates (Type 054-A/P) for Pakistan Navy was signed between Pakistan and China in 2018. The first and second ships PNS TUGHRIL and PNS TAIMUR joined the PN fleet in 2022. The development of these state-of-the-art naval units for the Pakistan Navy is hinged upon modern stealth design with the capability to simultaneously engage in multiple naval operations to counter maritime threats. The 4000 tons frigates are technologically advanced and highly capable platforms having enormous surface-to-surface, land attack, surface-to-air and underwater firepower coupled with extensive surveillance potential. These ships will provide deterrence and mean for averting threats in our region while contributing towards the protection of Sea Lines of Communications (SLOCS).


The Type 054A is a multi-role frigate and is recognized as the backbone of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) fleet of surface combatants with 30 vessels in commission. They have a length of 134 meters, a beam of 16 meters for a displacement of 4,000 tons. They have a crew complement of 165 sailors and are fitted with:

a H/PJ-26 76mm main gun
2×4 CM302 anti-ship missiles
32x VLS cells for HQ-16 surface-to-air missiles
2x Type 730 30mm CIWS
2x Triple Torpedo launchers
In PLAN service, those frigates feature a Type 382 radar which shares a close resemblance with the Russian MR-710 Fregat radar. Unlike the Pakistan Navy variant – whose first ship-in-class is fitted with an SR2410C radar – the Type 054A in Chinese Navy service does not feature a long-range/metric wave radar.

Riaz Haq said...

Indian view of Pakistan Navy Modernization

by Guarav Sen

Pakistan has been proactively procuring technologically advanced naval vessels from China, headlined by a $5 billion deal signed in 2016 for Pakistan to acquire Yuan class Type 039/041 diesel submarines by 2028. Pakistan is all set to acquire eight such submarines from China, with four of them scheduled for delivery by the end of 2023. The first four subs are being built by China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation; the other four will be built in Pakistan by Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works, further bolstering Pakistan’s indigenous capabilities.

These submarines are equipped with advanced sensors and modern armaments, which tilts the tactical power balance slightly in favor of Pakistan. These diesel attack submarines align with the Pakistan Navy’s offensive sea denial strategy, which prioritizes the use of submarines and missile-carrying maritime patrol aircraft in naval warfare.

Apart from this, Pakistan is also expanding its surface fleet. It has commissioned Zulfiqar-class frigates, based on China’s Type 053H3 vessels, which serve multiple roles, including anti-submarine warfare. It carries YJ-82 missiles for anti-surface warfare and FM-90N short-range surface-to-air missiles for self-defense.

In January 2022, the Pakistan Navy commissioned its most advanced vessel, the guided missile frigate Tughril. The Tughril is the first of four powerful Type 054A/P frigates being built in Shanghai for the Pakistan Navy. The vessel is armed with surface-to-air missiles and supersonic surface-to-surface missiles (SSMs), is a versatile warship capable of undertaking multiple missions. The second such vessel, the Taimur, was commissioned in June 2022.

While the Tughril-class frigates represent a significant addition to Pakistan’s surface fleet, they do not pose a credible deterrent against the Indian Navy’s superior capabilities and numerical advantage. But still, India needs to monitor Pakistan’s shift toward power projection in the IOR. The addition of these advanced frigates enhances the Pakistan Navy’s capability to operate in distant waters, which is demonstrated by its ability to conduct joint drills with China’s navy in the East China Sea this year.

Besides China, Turkey is also playing a key role in stretching and modernizing Pakistan’s naval fleet. In 2018, Pakistan and Turkey signed a contract for the construction of four Milgem-class corvettes based on the design of Turkish Ada-class ships. Under the deal, Turkey will deliver four ships to Pakistan by February 2025.

Pakistan’s continued induction of higher-tonnage surface vessels reflects its ambition to enhance power projection in the region. The concerns for India lie not only in the naval imbalance but also in Pakistan’s first-ever maritime doctrine, “Preserving Freedom of Seas.”

Pakistan’s maritime strategy has evolved from an offensive sea denial approach to one focused on a sustained presence in the IOR. The Chinese-made J-10 fighter, which is part of China’s naval arm, can be used by the Pakistan Navy to carry out maritime operations in the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. The warplane can carry anti-ship missiles, which could enable the Pakistan Navy to play a more responsive role in the Indian Ocean.


Presently, Pakistan cannot come close to matching the maritime power of its archrival India, but the continued push for modernization and renewed strategic cooperation with China and Turkey could change the status quo by transforming Pakistan into a genuine regional naval power. A strong Pakistan Navy equipped with advanced frigates and other weapons is part of Beijing’s grand plan to ensure the security of Chinese oil imports coming from the Persian Gulf and attain control of the sea lanes traversing the Indian Ocean.

Riaz Haq said...

Pakistani defense conglomerate unveils new drone, missiles at IDEF

A Pakistani defense conglomerate has unveiled new missiles and a drone during Turkey’s IDEF defense conference.

During the event, which ran July 25-28, Global Industrial and Defence Solutions showed off its Faaz-RF and Faaz-IIR medium-range, air-to-air missiles, as well as the Shahpar III medium-altitude, long-endurance combat drone.

The Faaz missiles and the unmanned system on display were mockups, GIDS chief executive Asad Kamal told Defense News.

The Faaz-RF is an active radar-guided missile, while the Faaz-IIR features an imaging infrared seeker. Both have a range exceeding 100 kilometers (62 miles), can reach a speech of Mach 3.5 and can fly 6,000 feet above sea level, according to GIDS.

The Faaz-RF seeker has a 25-kilometer detection range, and the Faaz-IIR a 40-kilometer range.

The Faaz design appears to have been partly inspired by the Chinese SD-10/PL-12 weapon, which is produced under license by Pakistan Aeronautical Complex. GIDS said its products are locally developed and owns the intellectual property rights.

Shahpar III is a Group 4+ drone able to carry weapons, meaning it weighs more than 1,320 pounds.It has six hardpoints for up to 530 kilograms (1,168 pounds) of disposable stores; a 1,650-kilogram maximum takeoff weight; the option for an internal payload; indigenously developed avionics; anti-icing/deicing system; a 1553 architecture dual-redundant flight control computer; and multiple sensor options, including electro-optical/infrared, synthetic aperture radar, communications intelligence and signals intelligence.

Engine configurations of 140 horsepower and 170 horsepower are available, both with a 300-kilometer line-of-sight and 3,000-kilometer beyond line-of-sight range. However, the 140-horsepower option has a 30,000-foot ceiling when rigged for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions and a 24-hour endurance, and a 28,000-foot ceiling and 17-hour endurance when armed.

The figures for the 170-horsepower variant are 41,000 feet and 40 hours, and 35,000 feet and 35 hours, respectively.

The engines are foreign, but GIDS did not disclose the origin.

Shahpar III will be available for export next year after in-house trials, the organization said.

Riaz Haq said...

Ukraine’s drones (USVs) provide a lesson - Taipei Times

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has been going on for nearly a year and a half. At the end of last year Ukraine started building the world’s first “naval fleet of drones” to counter Russia’s Black Sea fleet, news reports said. One of Ukraine’s maritime drones — an uncrewed surface vessel (USV) that resembles a speedboat — is 5.5m long and weighs one tonne. It has an operational radius of up to 400km and can operate autonomously for up to 60 hours. It can carry a combat load of up to 200kg and has a maximum speed of 80kph. The USV’s main functions include long-range maritime reconnaissance and coastal surveillance, escorting and supporting Ukraine’s conventional fleet and countering amphibious operations, among others. This Ukrainian-developed USV is believed to be the weapon that badly damaged the Kerch Bridge in Crimea on July 17, effectively blocking Russia’s logistical supply line, and had attacked the Crimean Black Sea port of Sevastopol the previous day.

Taiwan would do well to learn from this experience. To be ready for a war across the Taiwan Strait, the nation should develop a sea-drone fleet that is maneuverable, fast, cheap and effective. In recent years there have been several incidents of Chinese illegally crossing over to Taiwan on simple rubber dinghies. As well as favorable sea conditions and good luck, another reason they managed to reach Taiwanese territory is that a dinghy’s low profile on the sea surface makes it hard to detect using electronic devices. For the same reason, USVs have a “stealth” function. Despite their small size, they can be used to hit ships of the People’s Liberation Army Navy as they try to cross the Taiwan Strait, thus giving Taiwan a chance to win decisively outside its own territory.

Taiwan also needs to develop a system that can launch sea-to-air or sea-to-ground missiles from USVs. If China were to invade Taiwan, the first attack waves would destroy more than half of Taiwan’s military airfields, warships, naval harbors and missile bases, as well as a large number of the military personnel stationed at those sites. In such a scenario, easily concealed sea drones and their operators stationed in bunkers might well play a role in turning the tide of the war.

Riaz Haq said...

It looks like Pakistan bought a Chinese spy ship. What does it do?

ISLAMABAD — It appears Pakistan’s Navy has acquired a Chinese-built spy ship, according to open-source intelligence analyst Damien Symon, who reviewed commercially available satellite imagery.

The intelligence gathering platform, dubbed Rizwan, is described as an “offshore supply ship” by online shipping monitor MarineTraffic. Pakistan reportedly acquired the vessel from China last year with no fanfare, and the ship was spotted during a stopover in Jakarta, Indonesia, in June 2023, while sailing home.

It is a compact vessel some 87.2 meters long, with two large radar domes on the stern, which along with other sensors point to an intelligence gathering role.

Neither the Pakistan Navy nor the Ministry of Defence Production, which handles military acquisitions, would discuss the ship’s role and capabilities when asked by Defense News.

However, a source with knowledge of Rizwan’s operations, speaking on the condition of anonymity given the sensitivity of the topic, confirmed to Defense News it is an “information gathering ship.” The source declined to provide further details.

Collin Koh, a senior fellow at the Singapore-based Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies think tank, said Rizwan appears to be an affordable and flexible design.

He told Defense News that the ship is based on the hull of an offshore support vessel, which makes “economical sense,” and that “aside from the huge radome that should serve as the electronic intelligence array, the platform might be able to accept varying mission modules if necessary.”

The ship looks to be dimensionally comparable to Norway’s intelligence gathering vessels Eger and Marjata, Sweden’s Artemis, or Germany’s Oste class, he added.

But Koh doubts Rizwan “has the onboard power capacity for telemetry missile tracking, like those found on the Chinese Yuan Wang series.” Instead, he explained, Rizwan is likely focused on gathering electronic and signals intelligence thanks to “onboard signals processing and analysis capabilities.”

He also said Rizwan’s modular configuration could support mission-specific equipment for hydrographic and oceanographic activities such as undersea gliders that can be launched from the stern deck.

Pakistan probably bought Rizwan in response to recent Indian acquisitions, as the two nations are archrivals, Koh added. And due to the relatively small size of Pakistan’s Navy, a dedicated electronic and signals intelligence platform will reduce the intelligence gathering burden on the service’s aircraft, ships and submarines, he explained.

These platforms would have mainly used electronic sensory measures to capture electromagnetic emissions, but “would have little or no capacity at all to process and analyze the signals,” he said. As a dedicated platform, Rizwan could therefore better monitor Indian naval activity “while freeing up the fleet combat assets for their primary duties.”


Alongside indigenous development as well as acquisition and production programs with the Dutch and Turkish governments, Chinese help is instrumental in advancing elements of Pakistan’s naval modernization plan. Such support is seen in Pakistan’s Hangor II submarines, long-range unmanned combat drones and anti-ship missiles.

“These and other projects will help plug gaps in fleet air defense, battle management, [electronic warfare], and [intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance] for a potent [anti-access/area denial] capability through three surface task groups operating in the Arabian Sea,” Ahmed said.