Wednesday, 11 May 2011

What If India Is Attacked In Operation Geronimo Style?

Josy Joseph Times Of India Article
If someone were to sneak in and carry out a special forces raid, like the Americans did in Abbottabad to take out Osama bin Laden, the Indian response may not be very different from that of Pakistan, sources in the security establishment said.
In the wake of such a disappointing realization, the government has begun discussing ways to improve India's response mechanisms, including designating 'first responders' for such eventualities.

The Abbottabad raid is now under intense scrutiny by the security establishment at the highest levels, and by individual organizations such as intelligence agencies and the military. Each of them is studying it from their own perspective, but collectively their inputs "would help improve Indian security architecture", a senior official said.


Government at the highest levels is "seized of the reality" that Indian security response would not be very different from that of Pakistan, and is setting in motion reviews at various levels to improve its response mechanisms, a senior official involved in the exercise told. While the overall architecture of defence against intrusions is known, such as the role of IAF and Army, there are still huge gaps. What is not clear is "who would respond how and when if an Abbottabad-like intrusion" were to happen, he said.

Another official pointed out that the details of response of various agencies as soon as first shots were fired in Abbottabad are of great value to the security establishment. While the Kakul Military Academy and other security installations tightened their own security as soon as the gunshots rang out from the Abbottabad compound, there was no designated agency that was meant to reach the particular spot to take on the "intruder", the official said.

"We have a similar problem," another officer said, adding that the government will work on designating an agency, or agencies, as first responders to reach a spot in case of an intrusion, especially in civilian areas.

Meanwhile, sources in various security agencies said each of them was studying the Abbottabad raid for their internal education and possible improvements.

IAF is preparing a detailed report on the entire operation. Sources said the first fighters scrambled by the Pakistan Air Force took to the sky only an hour after the Americans had completed their operation. Once airborne, PAF fighters kept flying until the morning for no apparent reason.

Army headquarters has already had a few rounds of consultations about the operation, which is now being considered an almost perfect special forces operation with strategic aims. Army is especially looking at it from the perspective of special forces, an area where India will have to look at improving quality though it boasts numbers.