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The Editorial Analysis- Lessons from Russia for India

Lessons from Russia for India- Relevance for UPSC Exam

  • GS Paper 2: International Relations- Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

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Lessons from Russia for India in news

  • Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has had many impacts, but one area which merits more attention is whether it has produced effects sufficient to alter our understanding of warfare.

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Lessons from Russia for India- Key Changes in Warfare

  • Relevance of Tanks: The battle tank has been rendered obsolescent, because of the highly effective performance of anti-tank missiles such as the American-built Javelin or Advanced Anti-Tank Weapon System in visiting destruction upon Russian T-90s.
    • But tanks have withstood past obituaries.
    • Fundamentally, at a tactical level, for the tank to be effective requires the use of infantry in close support of armoured operations.
    • As was the case in past wars in which the tank suffered losses, this is still absent in Russia’s strategy, which explains why the Russians have suffered such heavy tank losses.
    • As a standalone capability, the tank provides advantages in the form of a trinity of elements – firepower, mobility and protection.
    • No weapons platform for ground operations can serve as a credible substitute.
  • Role of new Technologies in warfare: emerging technologies such as cyber and digital technology, Artificial Intelligence, etc. have rendered obsolescent legacy platforms such as fighter planes, warships, and artillery weapons. However-
    • Emerging technologies cannot be a substitute for legacy platforms; they can at best enhance their performance.
    • If precision firepower is to be delivered against adversary targets, legacy systems will matter for launch of ordinance.
    • The devastating losses incurred by the Russian ground forces from drone and anti-tank attacks operating in Battalion Tactical Groups, comprising largely armour and artillery units and little infantry, seem to have convinced proponents that there is a change in the nature of warfare.
    • Infantry plays a key role in providing protection to any advancing tank column and retaliating when threatened.
    • This doesn’t herald a change in warfare, it is just poor tactics.
  • Role of Air Power: the failure of the Russians to effectively apply air power botched the invasion from the outset.
    • This has convinced proponents that air power is not consequential.
    • Indeed, Suppression of Enemy Air Defences should be the foremost requirement for any invading force.
    • Russia’s failure to neutralise Ukrainian air defences remains a glaring weakness.

UN Human Rights Council Resolution on Russia Ukraine War

संपादकीय विश्लेषण- भारत के लिए रूस से सबक

Key Takeaway for India from Russia-Ukraine War

  • Investing in Warfare Technologies: India must invest more in sensors, electronic warfare, greater digitisation, satellite communications and unmanned systems not just for reconnaissance and surveillance, but also attack missions.
    • This does not require dispensing with legacy platforms, but rather making them more lethal and effective.
  • Developing Offensive Capabilities: India will also need greater missile forces to enhance its offensive capability.
    • The Indian armed forces will need to be proficient at combined arms warfare.
  • Role of Morale and Leadership: No amount of advanced technology can substitute or compensate for low morale and training, weak command, poor tactics and strategy.

 

The Editorial Analysis- The Learning Grounds of Ukraine

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