South Asia and Beyond

Military ‘Theatre’-Isation: Tri-Service Conundrum

NEW DELHI: Of late, internal discussions in the Indian military about creation of theatre commands to bring in optimisation and synergy has spilled out in the public domain causing huge outrage and generating a lot of acrimonious debate amongst military veterans. What is the reality? Is India’s first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen Bipin Rawat unfair in calling the Indian Air Force a support arm for ground forces? Is the IAF being obdurate in its approach? These questions are natural since change is never easy. And any hint of change in tradition-bound, conservative armed forces leads to instant push back. So what is the way forward. To answer these and some more questions, Editor-in-Chief Nitin A. Gokhale is in conversation with three armed forces veterans who have had some experience in working in tri-service organisations at a higher defence management level in recent years.

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