Military Review

Tanks in the Himalayas: a new conflict between China and India may be more serious

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Not so long ago, India and China decided to withdraw their army units stationed in the area of ​​Lake Pangong Tso in the western Himalayas. In New Delhi, this withdrawal of troops was then described as "disengagement", which was carried out in order to ease tensions in the disputed border area.


The Indian military then released aerial photographs of Chinese soldiers dismantling fortifications in the Pangong Tso area. According to the Indian side, China withdrew 200 tanks and other armored vehicles from the area.

The number of tanks and armored vehicles concentrated in the vicinity of Lake Pangong Tso indicates that both countries took the conflict on the border very seriously. Next time, if Beijing and New Delhi fail to agree, the conflict could be much more serious and bloody.

The Himalayan mountains cannot be called a good place to deploy armored vehicles. First, the landscape, which, as they say, is without comment. Secondly, the mountain air itself, constant frosts. The operation of a large number of armored vehicles in such conditions inevitably entails its breakdowns, failure, which means additional costs for maintenance and repairs. India found itself in a particularly difficult situation, most of whose tank park was not adapted to such conditions.

Retired Indian Army Brigadier General Rahul Bhonsle, who now heads the consulting company Security Risks Asia, once said that tanks and armored vehicles need to be warmed up for 30 minutes every three hours so that they do not freeze.


Business Insider author Benjamin Brimelow believes that it was this problem associated with the risks to technology that ultimately became the most important reason for India and China to withdraw their armored forces from the disputed area. It is difficult to disagree with him, since in political terms, Beijing and New Delhi do not give up their claims to the disputed territories, no one wants to yield to anyone. This means only one thing: the risk of conflict remains.

China and India are two powerful powers, and if they fail to agree among themselves on the disputed territories, the likelihood of a new armed clash will still hang in the air. The conflict may flare up with renewed vigor, and how can we not recall the 1962 border war, as a result of which China established control over the Aksai-Chin region. Then the Indian army lost 8000 people killed, the Chinese troops - only 722 people.

Such impressive losses were explained simply: due to difficult landscape and climatic conditions, the sides used little military equipment and fought "the old fashioned way", that is, only one infantry went into battle. Having drawn conclusions from the war for Aksai-Chin, both India and China began to build up their tank power.

At present, the main battle tanks T-72, T-90 "Bhishma" and "Arjun" form the basis of the tank fleet in India. The most suitable for use in the cold climates of the Himalayan mountains are tanks created in Russia or according to Russian projects - T-72 and T-90.

China uses the main battle tanks Type 96, Type 99 and the light tank Type 15. It is the Type 15 that is the most promising for warfare in the Himalayas: its weight is only 35 tons, while the Indian tanks T-72, T-90 and Arjun »Weigh 41, 46 and 68 tons, respectively.

Tanks in the Himalayas: a new conflict between China and India may be more serious

The lower mass makes the Type 15 much more suitable for maneuvering in mountainous terrain than heavy Indian tanks. India does not have its own light tanks, and this circumstance significantly reduces its chances in confronting armored forces in the Himalayas.

The data provided by the Indian military indicate that T-72 tanks and BMP-2 combat vehicles are concentrated on the Indian side. Chinese forces are more diverse: older Type 80 tanks and modern models are visible, and at least 12 Chinese ZBD-04 infantry fighting vehicles, and, probably, the HQ-17 air defense system on a tracked platform, and Type 09 self-propelled anti-aircraft artillery mounts.

The concentration of such a quantity of equipment testifies to only one thing: if the battles in the Himalayas flare up with renewed vigor, they will be much more deadly than in 1962.

On video - tanks in Ladakh:
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  1. Victor_B
    Victor_B 7 May 2021 05: 16
    +8
    Two nuclear powers ...
    Pakistan may well take advantage of the conflict between India and China on the side of China.
    1. UPS
      UPS 7 May 2021 05: 25
      +4
      And irreconcilable. From these two facts, as it does not become oneself. God forbid that ..., the whole continent will be taken away.
      1. Egoza
        Egoza 7 May 2021 06: 24
        +10
        Quote: USV
        And irreconcilable. From these two facts, as it does not become oneself. God forbid that ..., the whole continent will be taken away.

        It would be better to think of how to stop the pandemic at home, but they are all playing tanks!
        1. NIKN
          NIKN 7 May 2021 09: 35
          +3
          Yes, it is the author who aggravates the situation. The whole article is based on "IF" To read the author's morning fantasies, and even in the midst of festive, long weekends, and at the same time take it seriously ..., I think if then the aliens will not allow a catastrophe, we sleep well. smile
        2. hrych
          hrych 7 May 2021 09: 54
          -1
          Quote: Egoza
          It would be better to think of how to stop the pandemic at home, but they are all playing tanks!
          If you look closely, the pandemic is to blame. The mistake of the Indians in the lack of purchases of T-80. So as not to warm up the engines every half hour, but start the gas turbine engine with half a turn. Also, the turbine does not "choke" so much when discharged. The miser pays twice, the GTE is low-cost, but it does not need constant warming up. With such a positional confrontation, a kind of "war of attrition", this is extremely important. You can't save enough fuel just for warming up. At idle, constantly and for a long time .. Here they argued about light tanks, but they still need to be warmed up, the drop in power in the highlands to compensate for the deterioration of armor protection and impact power - it is a mistake when there is an opportunity not to lose it. Now Russia is developing an Arctic grouping and there is a gas turbine T-80, as a find. Oil heaters are not needed, constant heating is not needed, starts with a half-turn at the lowest temperatures. And the Russian Federation has a three thousandth reserve of such tanks. Those. to throw a couple of hundred to the Indians in a short time, having carried out diagnostics from storage, and not wait for the production cycle.
          1. Aleks tv
            Aleks tv 7 May 2021 18: 37
            +4
            ... T-80. So as not to warm up the engines every half hour, but start the gas turbine engine with half a turn. Also, the turbine does not "choke" so much when discharged.


            Hello.
            hi
            Of course, it is easier to start a T-80 with a gas turbine engine in winter, if only the electricity does not "die" or is somewhere close by.
            There is no dispute, it's like a "jealous diesel engine" I say.))

            But what about the thin air in the mountains? I would like to argue that the GTE is more difficult in the mountains.
            But I thought ... Is this so? I'll try to speculate:

            Two facts:
            1.From every 1000m. dvigl loses 10% power.
            2. A gas turbine engine eats 4 times more air than an internal combustion engine.

            But, for example, engines with turbochargers have an advantage at altitude (where the air density is lower) compared to simple engines, because thin air is easier to compress.
            And how then, in this light, will the GTE behave?
            In the mountains above 2000, the T-80 did not have to be driven by myself ..
            Does anyone have SUCH experience?
            ........
            And with a diesel engine on the T-72,90, of course, hemorrhoids in winter, BUT NOT IN THE MOUNTAINS. The main thing is that the engine was not B-46-6, but something from the B-84 family and above. This one pulls quite well at altitude, but it is turbocharged ...
            And the launch - yes, hemorrhagic.

            Outputs for Indians now:
            - Drive a group of tanks on duty on pre-heaters.
            - If it is necessary to abruptly leave the PPD for all tanks, then use the "emergency start". It IS in our diesels, but it is highly undesirable - dviglu is not ice at all. We have the right to use it only in the real Combat Alarm mode.

            On the tee of the supercharger (B-84MS), an intake air heating system is installed - two candles and a fuel supply valve. Up to minus 20 is allowed by the manufacturer even without preheating the oil. Of course, a sharp animal comes to the resource, but if the edge presses, then it is possible to start.
            .........
            But how does a gas turbine engine behave in conditions of discharged air?

            There is an opinion that it is worse ...
            But this is an "opinion" that just "one grandmother said" ...
            Why not?
            Are there practices or REAL INFA?

            It would be very interesting to hear sensible comments ...
            hi
            1. hrych
              hrych 7 May 2021 21: 44
              +1
              Quote: Aleks tv
              Hello.

              Hi drinks Well, like turbojet, turboprop and turbofan engines from one cradle, as they work in aviation and even in the stratosphere. Those. a decrease in the oxygen content is compensated by the amount of air blown through, etc. The gas turbine engine of a tank still has the dignity of being an omnivorous fuel with all that it implies. It does not stall, it is not afraid of condensation during sudden changes in temperature in the mountains, etc.
              Quote: Aleks tv
              But how does a gas turbine engine behave in conditions of discharged air?

              The very reason to check it out in the Himalayas laughing
    2. Finches
      Finches 7 May 2021 06: 07
      +12
      Who's to blame? Anglo-Saxons! When British India collapsed in 1947, it left behind a bunch of unresolved border problems, did not even leave borders, there are no borders as such, but only lines: Radcliffe Line, Durand Line, McMahon Line, Ardag-Johnson Line, Macartney-MacDonald Line ... and more to the heap!
      1. Revolver
        Revolver 7 May 2021 07: 23
        +5
        That's for sure. In all the places where the Naglich people left, there were problems and, as a rule, wars because of how they "well prepared" the countries of the region for independence and, in particular, they drew borders. Wherever you look. Africa, the Middle East, Asia - everywhere after their departure they fought, and not once. The only exception is the United States, and then they did not leave the territory of the United States on their own terms, but they were kicked out.
      2. oleg-gr
        oleg-gr 7 May 2021 08: 56
        +1
        India found itself in a particularly difficult situation, most of whose tank park was not adapted to such (mountain) conditions. It turns out that the Indian Ministry of Defense does not consider such conflict situations at all? And the territory is disputed and each side insists on its right to it. Or are they also sawing the loot?
        1. Lara Croft
          Lara Croft 7 May 2021 18: 09
          0
          Quote: oleg-gr
          India found itself in a particularly difficult situation, most of whose tank park was not adapted to such (mountain) conditions.

          So we have the same tank fleet in the Southern Military District, only the T-90 is smaller ... and the PT-76 has been removed from service ...
      3. Zaurbek
        Zaurbek 9 May 2021 12: 39
        -1
        No one is to blame ... there were principalities ... ... would have butted without the British.
    3. Pandiurin
      Pandiurin 8 May 2021 19: 08
      0
      Quote: Victor_B
      Two nuclear powers ...
      Pakistan may well take advantage of the conflict between India and China on the side of China.


      To take advantage probably implies getting a benefit. What is the benefit to Pakistan from participating in a nuclear exchange with an exchange of strikes.

      Hindus are rattling their arms, there was an aggravation with Pakistan, now with China.

      In this case, China and Pakistan do not share, I think that this is a general designation of India's aggression against China.

      At one time, the United States granted China favored treatment in exchange for a policy against the USSR.
      Now, apparently, the Indians want to get hold of the buns for the anti-Chinese vector.

      They have already hung a carrot for them.
      Upgrade G7 to G10 with new three members:
      Australia, South Korea, India.

      Formally, India is ready to be admitted to the club of selected Western countries.
      Interestingly, it is purely a tempting and divorce, or there really is filling, for example, mega projects for the development of industry and production.

      For some reason it seems to me that the Indians are being bred, now the crisis is taking away what was previously presented, no one will give new buns in large quantities, unless they promise and then feed them breakfast.
  2. Pessimist22
    Pessimist22 7 May 2021 05: 20
    +2
    China will whip up Hindus influencing its tail in front of the United States.
    1. ammunition
      ammunition 7 May 2021 08: 09
      +1
      Quote: Pessimist22
      China will pump the Hindus

      laughing There is the Himalayas in between! So they found one narrow hole (pass) in the Himalayas, and are trying to bend each other through this hole .-)) Vain labor. The Himalayas are by no means the Caucasus. They are impassable in principle.
    2. lucul
      lucul 7 May 2021 08: 45
      +2
      China will whip up Hindus influencing its tail in front of the United States.

      Yes, Indians are still cadres.
      Our tanks supplied in India are equipped in a tropical version, therefore
      Retired Indian Army Brigadier General Rahul Bhonsle, who now heads the consulting company Security Risks Asia, once said that tanks and armored vehicles must be warmed up for 30 minutes every three hours so that they do not freeze.

      Therefore, for the Indians, for the Himalayas, it is advisable to purchase or re-equip some of the tanks for the version of Siberia (and not the tropics), and it will not be necessary to ruin the motor resource in the Himalayas like that.)))
  3. Vladimir_2U
    Vladimir_2U 7 May 2021 05: 22
    +5
    The conflict can flare up with renewed vigor, and how can we not recall the 1962 border war, as a result of which China established control over the Aksai-Chin region. Then the Indian army lost 8000 people killed, the Chinese troops - only 722 people.
    China may not know how to fight, well, so the Indians are also far from being "miraculous heroes", but an advanced social structure, which means that the economy of China also allows us to put pressure on technical superiority.
    1. IS-80_RVGK2
      IS-80_RVGK2 7 May 2021 08: 34
      -1
      Quote: Vladimir_2U
      but an advanced social device

      In China, fascism under the red flags can hardly be called advanced.
      Quote: Vladimir_2U
      which means that the economy of China also allows us to put pressure on technical superiority.

      India will not be alone. The United States is forging a coalition against China, along with India as well.
      1. Vladimir_2U
        Vladimir_2U 7 May 2021 08: 38
        0
        Quote: IS-80_RVGK2
        In China, fascism under the red flags can hardly be called advanced.
        Did you find out from the American media? Disclose the source.
        1. IS-80_RVGK2
          IS-80_RVGK2 7 May 2021 12: 09
          +1
          Quote: Vladimir_2U
          Did you find out from the American media? Disclose the source.

          Not. From my own observations. I'm wondering why did you decide that in a country with wild exploitation of the proletariat, with private ownership of the means of production, with a bunch of billionaires - socialism?
          1. Vladimir_2U
            Vladimir_2U 11 May 2021 07: 34
            -1
            Quote: IS-80_RVGK2
            I'm wondering why did you decide that in a country with wild exploitation of the proletariat, with private ownership of the means of production, with a bunch of billionaires - socialism?

            And I wonder where you found what I wrote about socialism in China? He wrote about the advanced social structure, but not about socialism. In China now, it seems to me that something like cyber NEP is clearly cooler than caste, without any cyber, in India.
    2. Grits
      Grits 7 May 2021 10: 10
      +3
      Quote: Vladimir_2U
      China may not know how to fight

      Who said he can't? They have plenty of combat experience. Since the end of World War II, they often fought - starting with the civil war against the Kuomintang, smoothly moving from the Korean one. Where, by the way, they directly fought with the Americans. We cannot boast of the experience of fighting with the Americans (well, except for air battles over Korea). Then there were several wars with the same Indians. There were Vietnam and even the USSR on the Ussuri ice. So don't underestimate them.
      1. Vladimir_2U
        Vladimir_2U 11 May 2021 07: 37
        -1
        Quote: Gritsa
        Who said he can't? They have plenty of combat experience.

        And I'm about the same. Let this experience be specific.
  4. Revolver
    Revolver 7 May 2021 05: 55
    -3
    Let them fight. The Chinese, of course, will compensate for the lost equipment themselves, but the turkeys will be purchased, and a considerable part in the Russian Federation. For factories, orders are not superfluous, and jobs for these orders will not harm the economy.
    Quote: Harry S. Truman
    ... and that way, let them kill each other as much as possible
    1. Lech from Android.
      Lech from Android. 7 May 2021 06: 08
      -1
      There was an article earlier that our tanks from the Indians did not correspond to the conditions of war in the highlands, in contrast to the Chinese tanks.
      Now again the same topic is being discussed.
      I would like to read the opinion of active tankers, is this really so? what
      1. zadorin1974
        zadorin1974 7 May 2021 07: 25
        +3
        Well, don't dance at war. In the DRA and Tajikistan, the same 72 were used, and very successfully. Although, I would like to see the oncoming tank duels on mountain serpentines performed by the Indians.
        1. Denis Rumyanny
          Denis Rumyanny 7 May 2021 09: 38
          0
          In the Himalayas, the altitude will be higher. On average, from 4 km, the problem is not with the relief, but with thin air.
  5. Nyrobsky
    Nyrobsky 7 May 2021 06: 23
    +8
    The war between Beijing and Delhi is in the interests of only one country, namely the United States. it will disrupt the interaction of countries within the BRICS and inhibit the development of the two fast-growing economies of China and India, which, according to PwC experts, will be among the leaders in GDP growth and consumer demand by 2050, which cannot but worry the mattresses, since the emphasis of economic development is shifting towards the Asia-Pacific region. They have already neutralized Dilma Rousseff by placing their puppet in Brazil. No wonder the mattresses are now courted by the Indians, heating up their old contradictions with China.
  6. 501Legion
    501Legion 7 May 2021 07: 01
    0
    Quote: Lech from Android.
    There was an article earlier that our tanks from the Indians did not correspond to the conditions of war in the highlands, in contrast to the Chinese tanks.
    Now again the same topic is being discussed.
    I would like to read the opinion of active tankers, is this really so? what

    can only say "Let them fight." There is nothing good in war, wherever it takes place
  7. rotmistr60
    rotmistr60 7 May 2021 07: 03
    +5
    Since there are unresolved issues on the disputed territories, then the likelihood of another conflict is great. And in this case, the question will be who will fight with what tanks, and who will be trained and morally prepared how. But for both sides it is most prudent to resolve everything peacefully at the negotiating table.
  8. Thrifty
    Thrifty 7 May 2021 07: 05
    +1
    Ilya, the T80 is most suitable for conducting combat operations in such conditions, because their gas turbine engine is ideally suited for operation in freezing temperatures.
    1. zadorin1974
      zadorin1974 7 May 2021 07: 29
      +6
      It was the eighties in Afghanistan that did not go on tests. In case of pressure drops, the gas turbine engine suffocates more than a simple engine. They were also quickly withdrawn from Chechnya. In mountainous conditions, t 80 is used only in Pakistan, but this is the Ukrainian version with a simple diesel engine (t 80 beats) t 84 ...
    2. Revolver
      Revolver 7 May 2021 07: 37
      +8
      In general, tanks and mountains do not mix well, mountain roads limit maneuver, and vertical guidance angles limit the ability to use the weapon. They rather need ATGMs and rapid-fire cannons like "Shilki" to work on targets higher on the slope. Well, aviation. And basically, of course, infantry with mountain training and, oddly enough in the XNUMXst century, cavalry may be relevant, horses will pass in the mountains where no equipment can pass, and much faster than infantry.
    3. donavi49
      donavi49 7 May 2021 08: 23
      +4
      The gas turbine engine at 3000-4000 m suffocates and it is easier to make a diesel engine work. It's just a frosty winter, yes, the GTE is better. But not in the mountains.
  9. rocket757
    rocket757 7 May 2021 07: 49
    +2
    Tanks in the Himalayas: a new conflict between China and India may be more serious
    The question is, who is the first to dare to roll?
  10. Andrei Nikolaevich
    Andrei Nikolaevich 7 May 2021 07: 50
    +2
    Yeah .. This is not Ukraine and Hungary ... That's all, seriously.
  11. APASUS
    APASUS 7 May 2021 08: 40
    0
    Such an interesting set of information. In conditions of high mountains it is difficult and very problematic to use tanks, but the sides are stubbornly building up tank units ................. paragraph!
  12. Dmitry Makarov
    Dmitry Makarov 7 May 2021 11: 06
    -3
    The Indians need to buy "Bayraktars" and "Javelins" and the question will be resolved!
    1. Anar
      Anar 7 May 2021 16: 37
      +1
      It is necessary, but Turkey will not sell Bayraktars to India, Turkey and Pakistan are helping each other a lot, for this reason, Turkey would rather give them to Pakistan for free than sell them to India. Moreover, India has recently hinted at a joint exercise with Greece if Turkey supports Pakistan. And Turkey will not forgive such blackmail.
    2. gsev
      gsev 7 May 2021 17: 57
      +1
      Quote: Dmitry Makarov
      Indians need to buy "Bayraktars"

      Simpler Israeli drones. The truth is expensive. But there are no political barriers to such a deal from either India or Israel. And the United States will not refuse to arm the enemy of the PRC.
  13. oppozite28
    oppozite28 7 May 2021 18: 31
    0
    In the vicinity of Lake Pangong-Tso, the prosecutors and cops divide the fish farms. The parties pulled up aviation, artillery and tanks, but the weather conditions were to blame ..., the meeting was postponed as always bully
  14. gorenina91
    gorenina91 8 May 2021 11: 28
    +1
    The conflict can flare up with renewed vigor, and how can we not recall the 1962 border war, as a result of which China established control over the Aksai-Chin region. Then the Indian army lost 8000 people killed, the Chinese troops - only 722 people.

    - Strange ... - This is news ... - For me personally ... - this is just unexpected news ...
    - And how did the Chinese manage to defeat the Indians in 1962 ...
    - Well, even ... if you could then; even today, even more so ... - India in the conflict with China simply has nothing to count on ... - And no tanks will help the Indians here ... - If today they are in conflict with Pakistan (India and Pakistan) on equal terms; then, in a conflict with China, India has no chance at all ...
  15. Roman Pastukhov
    Roman Pastukhov 8 May 2021 22: 00
    0
    "Tanks in the Himalayas". You can't drive in a tank in the Himalayas, the locals understood this long ago, so all cargo in the Himalayas is carried on yaks.
  16. Andrey Sushkov
    Andrey Sushkov 1 June 2021 19: 36
    0
    Well, India has no time for a large-scale war with China right now. Hindus are being mowed down by "covid", and the Chinese have already developed effective methods to combat this infection. What will happen to the Idian troops in the event of a massive accumulation of manpower in one place, I think, there is no need to say.
    Remember at least the "Spanish flu" in the trenches of the First World War. The losses from this strain of influenza exceeded the losses of all countries from the fighting.
  17. k_ply
    k_ply 3 June 2021 00: 33
    0
    Heh! The people are again raising the tank question in a businesslike manner and with a sense of the matter. Although, along the way, I will give an example from the past, not packs and not Indians simply did not know how and do not know how to use them - they are still warriors. They are like children really and have long been tormented by the question of which was better in the past M48 "Patton" or "Centurion": did they buy it? - in short, like children. And this infection will climb out here too. Such a question would not even arise among the rational-minded Austrians and Swiss, for example, if they were in conflict and would share their Alps among themselves. It's like indulging in delirium, why the United States lost the war in Vietnam - because of the AK or M16, i.e. because of the weapon - the shooter, and not because of the strategy and tactics of the command, or the level of BP or the moral pumping of l / s. It's funny.