WI: India used FN FAL, good clothing and it's air force in 1962 Sino Indian war

Could the above weapon good clothing and Indian Air Force have made a major difference in the outcome of that war?
Indian forces in OTL were handicapped by the lack of modern firearms in some case using World War 1 era rifles whereas the Chinese had ak-47, Indian soldiers wore sweaters and had only a blanket more to protect themselves from the cold whereas the Chinese used padded fur clothes and the fear that Chinese aircrafts may bomb north Indian cities and that friendly fire could have caused even more casualties led toh Indian Air Force being grounded but ITTL The Indian Air Force is used to the limit of its capabilities, the ground troops are well equipped with proper winter clothing and Belgian FN FALs does this make a major difference?
 
The main mistake India made was underestimating the PRC response. The Indian Army moved in two strong brigades and was surprised by a well prepared counter attack by, IIRC, 7 or 8 Chinese divisions. Since Chinese division are smaller than western ones and were probably not at full strength, this means that the Chines had something like a 4 to 1 numerical superiority. At the time, before the cultural revolution, there is no reason to expect the Chinese no to be as good as the Indians.
The textbook requirement for attempting a counter attack is1 to 1, assuming the enemy didn't have time to consolidate. 2 to 1 are safe odds, and 4 yo 1 an overkill.
The Indians failed at the planning level, and no change of Gera is going to make up for that.
Regarding the Air Force, the Chinese could deploy MiG-19 with combat experience against Taiwan and had pilots who had learned their trade against the USAF over Korea.
There is no reason to believe the IAF would beat the PLAAF.
Before the cultural revolution the Chines were at a peak in army efficiency they would not recover until the 90s.
India would have to go on full war footing to beat them, and they were not in a position to do that.
Trying to force a "almost war" with limited means was a major blunder.
 
@AdA But won't the PLAAF be forced to operate from Lhasa(only Airfield in Tibet at that time) , Xinjiang and Yunan(across neutral Burma or otherwise all the way through Tibet) whereas the IAF could just outnumber them from base across all of north India. And won't the FN FALs make any difference whatsoever.
 
The Indian army at the time went into the war with a border skirmish mentality. They failed horribly. China had 4 times Indians numbers yet in casualty ratios, the Indian ratio was levels higher than the PLA. It didn't help that the troops used by the Chinese were Civil War veterans and Korean War veterans, used to total war rather than the limited war veterans of the Indo-Pak War.
Besides, in the conditions of Aksai Chin, there was no use for aircraft anyways. The mountains, valleys etc, made the Indian aircraft and IAF largely obsolete. It didn't help that the US and UK had blocked India from buying aircraft tools because of their ties with the Soviet Union. India at this time had no capability of reverse engineering such weapons. China did. The only place where IAF could have been used properly was in Arunachal. That was it. However there, the PLAAF would have enjoyed complete dominance from Tibet, Yunnan and Chengdu. There was a reason why the IAF and IN wasn't involved. If the war had been escalated, China wouldn't have stopped at Arunachal and would have continued their advance into Assam; with reinforcements and more escalation. That would have resulted in a huge loss for India and is partially why India didn't escalate the entire war. If they had, they would have been totally outclassed by the PLAAF. Today's Indian Military was not the Indian Military of 1962. The Chinese organization, command structure, doctrine, logistics etc were all far greater in advantage. Coupled with the Assamese, Manipur and Nagaland Independence movements who were growing bold during this time against India due to their losses against China, it would have been a huge loss to India. Pakistan would have gotten involved as well most likely.
 
@AdA But won't the PLAAF be forced to operate from Lhasa(only Airfield in Tibet at that time) , Xinjiang and Yunan(across neutral Burma or otherwise all the way through Tibet) whereas the IAF could just outnumber them from base across all of north India. And won't the FN FALs make any difference whatsoever.
That "outnumbering" would be an all out war. The whole premisee of the Indian actions was that it would be a limited action.
The FN-FAL was arguably the best infantry rifle of it's era. But if you don't change a lot of other things, it's impact alone would be minimal.
 
However there, the PLAAF would have enjoyed complete dominance from Tibet, Yunnan and Chengdu.
Yes but wouldn't the ranges involved become too great unless PLAAF constructs forward air bases in Tibet they only had a proper airport in Lhasa and the IAF never flew combat close air support missions throughout the war.

It didn't help that the US and UK had blocked India from buying aircraft tools because of their ties with the Soviet Union
No there was no such sanctions India only operated Soviet origin aircraft the AN-12,Il-14 transport and Mi-4 helicopters. In 1961 India selected the MiG-21 after a competition with western aircraft but wasn't delivered yet. And the first person whom Nehru dialled for help was the US president. India only became a fully Soviet aligned country after Indira Gandhi became the Prime Minister. The Americans had sent 24 USAF C-130s to help with logistics. Other western countries also sent arms. Mao himself had commented that "Nehru can get whatever he wants out of America as long as he keep fighting us".
If the war had been escalated, China wouldn't have stopped at Arunachal and would have continued their advance into Assam; with reinforcements and more escalation.
In Assam India would have tanks which would have mowed down any number of infantry that the Chinese could muster. Crossing the Himalayas and touching the plains was impossible where Indian heavy hardware would be waiting for them.
Coupled with the Assamese, Manipur and Nagaland Independence movements who were growing bold during this time against India
Nagaland insurgency was already contained and the others were still police actions. Pakistan going to war against India when it's fighting communists would have huge repurcussions and might have led to USA entering the war. Pakistan too hadn't sorted out its border with China till then.
 
Yes but wouldn't the ranges involved become too great unless PLAAF constructs forward air bases in Tibet they only had a proper airport in Lhasa and the IAF never flew combat close air support missions throughout the war.
Eh? Yunnan is fully in range of Northeast India taking up about 2/3 of the PLAAF operational range. Tibet Chengdu would have had some range problems, however was fully capable of servicing and flying over arunachal to keep aerial superiority there whilst Tibetan and Yunnan based fighters would be able to dominate Nagaland, Manipur and Assam.
Assam India would have tanks which would have mowed down any number of infantry that the Chinese could muster. Crossing the Himalayas and touching the plains was impossible where Indian heavy hardware would be waiting for them.
Unless India want their tanks to be broken into pieces? Aerial dominance coupled with the fact that the Chinese AT weapons were only matched by the US, USSR, and Britain at the time, those tanks would have been fodder, though with more casualties on Chinese side.
Nagaland insurgency was already contained and the others were still police actions. Pakistan going to war against India when it's fighting communists would have huge repurcussions and might have led to USA entering the war. Pakistan too hadn't sorted out its border with China till then.
Manipur insurgency was reaching their height. Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram were starting to have ethnic violence which would pave way for their later insurgencies. Also it so around this time the Naxalites developed their radical views. With an escalating war and India losing aksai China and arunachal, you think they will be quiet?
 
Unless India want their tanks to be broken into pieces? Aerial dominance coupled with the fact that the Chinese AT weapons were only matched by the US, USSR, and Britain at the time, those tanks would have been fodder, though with more casualties on Chinese side.
What anti tank weapons did the PLA bring along across the mountains plus there is no experience with the PLAAF in attacking ground targets to this day and the IAF pilots still on average train more(flight hours per pilot) than PLAAF pilots. Infantry in hostile areas when outnumbered and outgunned are cannon fodder.
 
No there was no such sanctions India only operated Soviet origin aircraft
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In Assam India would have tanks which would have mowed down any number of infantry that the Chinese could muster. Crossing the Himalayas and touching the plains was impossible where Indian heavy hardware would be waiting for them.
Armored units can in fact be smashed by well-handled light infantry if the armor is employed poorly. Just look at the Iran-Iraq War, where the Iranians encircled and destroyed Iraqi mechanized divisions with lightly armed infantry. Alternatively, look at how badly Chinese forces manhandled UN troops during the initial phase of PLA intervention in Korea, despite being outnumbered and outgunned. Weapons on their own are useless if not properly used.

That being said I don't actually know how effective the Indian army was in 1962, only that the PLA was pretty darn good.

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What anti tank weapons did the PLA bring along across the mountains plus there is no experience with the PLAAF in attacking ground targets to this day and the IAF pilots still on average train more(flight hours per pilot) than PLAAF pilots. Infantry in hostile areas when outnumbered and outgunned are cannon fodder.
The PLA would have access to numerous Type 56 RPGs (a copy of the Soviet RPG-2) and Soviet-designed recoilless rifles, the former of which is easily manportable and the latter of which is supposed to be used in situations like this.
 
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plus there is no experience with the PLAAF in attacking ground targets to this day and the IAF pilots still on average train more(flight hours per pilot)
You are totally discounting the thousands of veteran pilots of the Korean War where they had more than enough experience
 
You are totally discounting the thousands of veteran pilots of the Korean War where they had more than enough experience
No,no I am not at all questioning the experience that the PLAAF gained in Korea. But it was mainly dogfights not close air support. The massive clashes between F-86s and MiG-15s in the "MiG Alley" near the Yalu River is to be taken at face value.
 
No,no I am not at all questioning the experience that the PLAAF gained in Korea. But it was mainly dogfights not close air support. The massive clashes between F-86s and MiG-15s in the "MiG Alley" near the Yalu River is to be taken at face value.
Eh what? the PLAAF had directly taken notes from the Bombing of Pyongyang and incorporated it into their own data and doctrine. Hwacheon Dam Raid was an example of this when PLAAF and North Korean fighter-bombers destroyed the dam.
Besides, there was no way the IAF was going to outmatch the PLAAF anyways. Until the 1990s, the IAF and PLAAF both had around 110-120 Hours of training and the IAF had around 500 warplanes, of which a huge number had to be diverted against Pakistan and East Pakistan. The PLAAF had 6000 planes of which more 1/3 were in range of attacking and hitting India. Coupled with the fact that the IAF had no answer to the PLAAF IL-28 Bombers, MiG-19, which was at the time one of the best in the world, and the PLAAF had more than 400 of them, which was nearly the size of the IAF. The PLAAF IL-28 Bombers would hit Indian defences without worrying about aerial interception at all, because the IAF could not have been used to intercept them unless they were trying to imitate the Kamikaze. In fact IAF Generals at the time themselves stated that if Aerial power was used, they could not guarantee the safety of Cities like Kolkata, Kolkata Harbor and the NorthEastern Gangetic Plains and that North East India would have been lost to the PLAAF entirely. The IL-28 was the best medium bomber of it's time. Indian ground weaponry would have been sitting ducks to the PLAAF and the veteran 3rd fighter Division, 12th Fighter Division, and 4th fighter-Bomber Division which alone could take on half of the IAF alone.
 
The IL-28 was the best medium bomber of it's time.
IL-28 was inferior to the Canberras and the typical combat radius of a fighter is about a third of its range which would severely limited the range of the massive gas guzzlers like MiG-19.
From Xinjiang lL-28s could have made it close to Delhi. From Yunan they could have reached Guwahati.
From Lhasa they could have reached central West Bengal.
And there is no reason why Mystère IVs or Hawker Hunters have any difficulty in intercepting and downing IL-28s.
IAF pilots trained about 180 hours per year a British era legacy compared to about 100-120 hours per year of PLAAF pilots.
The Chinese had over extended themselves in the east(supply lines in India was Poor) and there was no way in which the Chinese could take the plains outnumbered, outgunned and in hostile terrain. And even if protracted fighting continued in the foothills winter would soon set in and the Chinese would be in the same position as the Germans in Moscow and supply lines would become untenable. In the west a more closely supplied defensive line was being consolidated where the Indian army could be more easily supplied. By January the Americans would be heavily involved Air Force wise and the air war would end.

By the way it's in news in that a new border dispute has erupted between India and Nepal in Bihar?
 
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India must have improved a lot between 1962 and 1965 if what's said on this thread is true.
After the war India spent nearly 4% of its gdp on the military each year and decided to maintain a million strong army with the latest weapons although mainly Soviet ones. By the end of the decade India was producing MiG-21s an indigenous fighter-bomber the HF-24 Marut and had thousands of T-55s as it was determined not to lose another war.
The quality of the Indian army officers was demonstrated in the 1965 war against Pakistan. One might argue that the Pakistan army was born of the same traditions as that of the Indians then the answer is that by 1965 they already suffered from the political disease that hits the militaries that take over government for 7 years by then.
The war occured in 1965 because Pakistan was convinced that India would become too powerful if it completed its military modernization and expansion. They wanted a war when they still could count on a slight edge in Tanks and artillery number(ironical).Yes, Pakistan had them in slightly greater numbers in 1965.
 
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