Since time immemorial these two countries had peaceful relations, based on culture, trade and mutual respect for each other.
But this war changed the equation drastically sowing seeds of suspicion and mistrust we are still coping with.
After the Chinese accession of Indian land, Aksai Chin in 1962 Indo-sino war.
In a debate in parliament over the issue,
“Nehru commented that "Not a blade of grass grows there", attempting to explain that Aksai Chin was a barren, inhospitable land and the nation had lost little by its occupation by China. ”
( A statement by the then Prime Minister)
A prominent parliamentarian, Mahavir Tyagi retorted very aptly, pointing to his own bald head: "Nothing grows here ..should it be cut off or given away to somebody else?".
1962 : Indo-Sino War
Result : China won and occupied Indian land called 'Aksai Chin'
What was the reason behind our lost, was it really a lost on military part ?
This is what most of us think or made to think that we lacked a strong military to cope with attacks on our sovereignty.
But the real reason was the POLITICAL FAILURE of J.L. Nehru.
Diplomatic Failure : In maps published by China in 1954, they showed the , present 'Aksai Chin' part of their territory, but Indian leaders just ignored it. If apt action was taken at that right time, we would have been not facing this relationship of mistrust and threat from our neighbor.
Forward policy : They decided unilaterally borders with China in 1957 and started setting military posts in the disputed region inflaming the situation. Further those posts could not be supplied properly with food, equipment, arms and ammunition.
Incompetent about military : Decisions at the highest level were taken without any military appreciation, and no overall plan was made to (prepare) for a major Chinese reaction, in fact Nehru and others believed that Chinese would not react until the war.
No use of IAF : This is the fact that most of the experts can't digest, instead of having a superior Air force to China at that time, it was only used for food supplies. If IAF had been employed, situation would have been much different. Reason : Nehru was informed by CIA to not to use IAF as it could worsen the condition. (Do we get better either ?)
Logistic failure : The army was not supplied with adequate food, ammunition and artillery, forcing for status quo further weakening their hold. A failure on the leadership part.
Over-trust on China: “Hindi Chini Bhai Bhai” was the standard diplomatic line that enjoyed unfounded importance by the state machinery in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s from Nehru and party. Though, silent are the reasons for sudden buildup of such a high-level of trust on Chinese, it could only be described as mere foolishness on the part of India. This over affectionate stance of India towards China spelled doom for the former.
Rubbishing of General Thorat’s warning reports: General Thorat from the Indian Army had prepared and submitted a report to the home ministry warning the political leadership of a much anticipated aggression from China’s side, but was ignored straight away by our political masters. Had the warnings been taken into stride on time, a large number of casualties and a massive defeat could have been prevented.
Attack on all fronts: The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) launched an attack on all fronts simultaneously encircling India in its trap when our leadership was sitting in Delhi discussing unyielding policies. India was attacked on the wee hours on October 20, 1962 in Ladakh, northern Uttarakhand and NEFA (presently Arunachal Pradesh) at the same and caught us unawares and ill-prepared to react on time.
Where we should have learned from our past for a better future, ironically all these information about the defeat and factors leading to it was made invisible to common people. Just to hide the incompetence of J.L. Nehru and the party.
Some people are really overrated from our past, like Nehru while others are not even given their due credit for what sacrifices they made for the country.
Lack of preparation on the Indian side was the main cause of India's defeat in the 1962 war. But then, let's not miss out on the reasons that led to the lack of preparation:
Motive: The motive of the Indians was to send the Chinese back if they come south of the McMahon line in the NEFA (modern Arunachal Pradesh) and Aksai Chin. For this, they instituted the Forward Policy, a policy of cutting the supply of the Chinese soldiers who crossed over the McMahon line. The Indians had no motive for war. The Chinese, on the other hand, wanted war and they had multiple motives to attack India:
To punish what they perceived as Indian aggression.
To stop US-Soviet-India encirclement of China at a time when the Soviets and the Americans were busy with the Cuban missile crisis.
To damage Nehru's prestige and to expose as traitorous the Soviet policy of supporting India against a communist country.
Differences in perception: The Indians did not think that the Chinese would attack. During the operation of the Forward Policy, the Indians found that the Chinese simply withdrew without engaging in a confrontation. This made the Indian establishment to think that there would be no war. The Chinese, on the other hand, felt threatened by the combination of Forward Policy and the Indian action in liberating Goa from Portuguese colonization. This made the Chinese think that India is being an aggressor and wants to claim Tibet by these piecemeal advances. So they started to prepare for an all out war whilst simultaneously withdrawing at the wake of the Forward Policy.
Zhou Enlai's lies and Nehru's blunder: Throughout the 1950's the Chinese under their Premier Zhou Enlai kept telling India and the rest of the world that China had no border disputes with India. This, even though the McMahon line was not clearly demarcated and there were differences in perception over where the line lay, coupled with Zhou's promise to Nehru even one week before the war that there would be no war, completely threw the Indian planning off track. Nehru too, stands to take the blame of not heeding to the Burmese Prime Minister Ba Swe's advice of taking caution while dealing with Zhou.
Thus, a combination of lies, underestimation and overconfidence spelt the defeat of India in the 1962 war.
I must blame that stupid Jawaharlal Nehru. He was always furious at the thought of an Army. He never paid attention to the needs of our Armed Forces. He was the worst minister because he only wanted police.
He had a stupid rule of his own to keep impressing that coward backstabber called China. He tried every way to impress China. He even rejected permanent membership in the UN Security Council which was offered to India and said that it should go to China. Had he accepted it, India would have been in a far greater strategic position regarding matters on terrorism. As a result, China regularly votes against India's petition to declare Masood Azhar as a terrorist.
He didn't allow the Indian Air Force to help our Army soldiers. Considering that in 1962, IAF was superior to Chinese air force, we could have won the war and prevented losses.
He never ensured that our Army had full supplies. In 1962 war, our soldiers ran out of supplies.
He is personally responsible for the loss of ao many soldiers, jusr because of his stupid insane logic called “Hindi Cheeni bhai bhai”. (Translated to: Indians and Chinese are brothers). Nehru was a total idiot. Accept it.
He messed up horribly.
Nehru's blunders are the main reason. Even though tensions are rising he failed to anticipate the war.
Nehru was informed by the then premier of Burma ( now myanmar ) Ba Swe not to believe the chinese. But he did not bother. As the tensions rose along the border the then Army chief B. M. Kaul asked Nehru to increase military budget. Nehru refused.
The ost important blunder is not using Air Force. USA suggested not to use Air force as China may retaliate by using Air strikes on civilians. But later CIA reports revealed that China neither had enough fuel nor nor runways long enough along the border.
Also the then Defense minister Krishna Menon (who has communist background) was pro-chinese. Nehru asked Indian ambassdor to China to communicate only with him directly as Menon cannot be trusted. Menon ignored intelligence reports from 1955 stating China is making preparations for war. Both Nehru and Menon blindly believed words of premier of China Zhou Enlai who repeatedly said that there would be no war only to mislead India.
India was not prepared militarily for the war. Also India had 10,000-12,000 soldiers while China had 80,000 soldiers.
Technically, India never lost 1962 war against China.
The much hyped 1962 war ended in a stalemate with the Chinese forces attacking India and receding back from the McMohan Line on their sweetwill.
In the morning of 20th October 1962, PLA (People’s Liberation Army) of China began shelling mortars on Indian posts on duty in north-western Kashmir (present Aksai Chin) and Arunachal Pradesh. The hostilies between the two nations continued for about a month till when China marched unobstructed capturing about 20 km inland of the border in both the war fronts. By 19th November, China had reached its claim lines so the PLA did not advance farther and Zhou Enlai(then President of PRC) declared a unilateral ceasefire.
Highlights of the ‘1962 Sino-Indian War’ —
India, throughout the war, was on a defensive position. High political indecision(under J.L.Nehru regarding Panchsheel and Forward Policy) led armed forces to be no less spectator than ordinary Indians. Practically, it was a one-sided war against India.
China’s hidden obxtive was to prove its dominance in South-Asia. India had repeatedly shown Aksai Chin on Indian map. India was meddling with the Tibetan issue. Moreover, India was not following the provisions of McMohan Line. China, on the other hand, could resolve the issues with a dedicated foreign policy but it rather clipped ‘Indian wings’ by its aggressive war to prove its dominance.
Both the sides did not put their navy or air force to use. This further reduced the scale of war.
India did not lose a war. Instead it lost a war-hero. The story of rifleman Jasvant Singh Ravat who single-handedly killed about 300 Chinese soldiers. The Orders for the 4 Garhwal rifles were to retreat from their position but Rifleman Jaswant Singh, remained at his post and repulsed Chinese troops for three days from overrunning the post. The local story goes that he was assisted by two Monpa girls named Sela and Nura. They had put guns at various places in such a manner that the Chinese were made to believe that the post had many soldiers. But the Chinese got hold of the man who was supplying rations to Jaswant Singh Rawat and it became known to them that only one man was guarding the post. The infuriated Chinese attacked with full force. Sula was killed in a grenade blast Nura was captured and Jaswant Singh Rawat killed by a head shot. This is the famous ‘Battle of Nuranang’
Because of the political background of the conflict, and the political nature of the regimes ruling India and China. The regions which were disputed had little importance, so they could not be the real reason behind a war between two such big countries. Then what was the real reason?
By 1962, the Sino-Soviet split had reached a level of unprecedented antagonism. The USSR had withdrawn all help from the PRC, and was militarizing the Sino-Russian borders. On the other hand, PRC claimed that USSR had abandoned socialism and was gradually restoring capitalism, and appealed to all communists of the world to break with the government of the Soviet unx. In this split, though Vietnam and DPRK supported PRC to some extent in the beginning, soon they too changed sides. Thus, China was isolated, in conflict with the Soviet bloc on one hand and the western bloc on the other.
In such a situation, Nehru was encouraged by both the western bloc and the Soviet bloc to follow a forward policy that would create a huge political problem for China, as the PRC did not have any allies any more. So Nehru began sending forces inside Chinese territory, despite being repeatedly discouraged by prominent military figures in India. Now, this was not much of a political issue in India, because the political consciousness of the Indian masses was lacking; their freedom movement was hijacked by Gandhians and Hindu fascists who changed it into a mere transformation from a colony to a semicolony under an indirect system of imperialist oppression. China, however, had achieved freedom through a successful revolutionary war, and its common citizens were aware of the Sino-Indian border politics to the ideological core. So, it was an ideological question for the Chinese whether to yield or not to an army being supported by imperialist powers. At some point, the Chinese decided that they’d had enough, and launched a well calculated resistance. Nehru, who had never expected the PRC to retaliate, was caught unaware. If the USSR and the western imperialist bloc participated in the war, then China would lose, but they didn’t because of the heavy damage China could cause in a land based retaliation to the USSR. It is for the same reason that India did not dare to escalate the war by using its air force. We all know what happened next.
Because Indian soldiers lacked everything but courage..
The blunder committed by political as well as military leadership by misreading the Chinese game and neglecting the Indian Army's preparedness, made India suffer a humiliating defeat in the Sino-Indian war of 1962. Though the only thing that stood out was the iron will and cold courage of the soldiers who, though completely outnumbered and ill-equipped, fought to defend their country's honor.
As early as August, China had started accumulating arms, ammunition and rations and the signs were clear that they were preparing for war. India, however, turned a blind eye to all this. Subedar Joginder Singh, who was awarded a Param Vir Chakra posthumously, waited across a stream in Bumla axis in Arunachal Pradesh, then called the North-East Frontier Agency (NEFA), watching the Chinese prepare their defences.
A romantic and politically shortsighted Nehru however did not increase military spending on preparation for a possible war with China. Not only was the army denied equipment, the renowned 4th Infantry Division was used to build houses instead of preparing for war!!
Nehru appointed Lt General B.M. Kaul as Chief of Army Staff in 1961. General Kaul was confident that China would not retaliate when India sent patrols into areas disputed with China. The Chinese, however, slowly started encircling the Indian positions.
Indian forces were unprepared, ill-equipped and did not even have proper winter clothing when on 12 October Nehru declared that he had ordered the Indian Army to throw the Chinese out of NEFA. On 14th October, an editorial in the People's Daily in China issued a warning to India and Nehru, 'At this critical moment, we still want to appeal once more to Mr Nehru: better rein in at the edge of the precipice and do not use the lives of Indian troops as stakes in your gamble,' it said. On 20th October, the Chinese People's Liberation Army launched two attacks on India. One of these was in Thag la, NEFA, while the other was in the Chushul sector of Ladakh. Both the attacks were massive in terms of troop concentration. On the Indian side, single companies of around 120 soldiers defended posts that were surrounded by thousands of enemy soldiers armed with machine guns, mortars and grenades.
The Sino-Indian war was fought at altitudes over 14,000 feet. The only shining stars of the 1962 war were the brave soldiers of the Indian Army, who fought valiantly and often to death to protect their territories. These brave hearts fought in high altitudes and freezing temperature with no jacket or proper winter boots or gloves. They used old and cumbersome .303 single action rifles of World War II vintage and LMG (Light Machine Guns) against Chinese automatics. They were outnumbered and completely mauled by the well-prepared Chinese Army but they continued to fight listening to the orders of higher commands ,"You will stay there till the last bullet and fight. Aap aakhri goli tak ladenge."
Their brave tales of unbelievable courage and fortitude tell us how soldiers don't forget their responsibilities even if politicians do.
Because PRC was established by a strong army. You can count how many wars PLA had fought at that time. First-phase of civil war, WWII against Japan, second-phase of civil war and capturing their opponent soldiers instead of killing them, war with US on Korea. They repelled invaders from and defended their motherland. The commanders and soldiers were fearless and they knew they need to prepare for the battle. See what India got? No war with Brits. That’s the difference.
India saw itself as the center, they saw the UK, US as “assistance”.
Even today, Indians sees itself as the center, Japan and US as the “assustance”.
India’s pride was the cause of blunder. The reality is the west sees India as a proxy against China. The west will not die for Indians. Neither US, Japan recognizes Kashmir as part of India, neither of them are allies of India.
“Know your enemy, and know yourself, in a hundred battles , you shall never be in peril.”
India rarely calculates correctly, the strength of the other side. Its elite class falsely believes in India’s supremecy. Wars are often lost by pride.
In 1962, War was lost before it even began.