I am no fauji (as many key-board warriors remind me all the time on social media because I haven’t served) but as someone who has operated in various insurgency theatres in north-east, J&K and Sri Lanka since 1983, I have a semblance of idea of what it means to be in a conflict zone. But don’t take my word for it.
Here’s a serving young officer’s take on what is happening vis-a-vis the military of late. For obvious reasons he will remain unnamed!
Well, We are at war. Look around if you doubt it. The situation in Kashmir and most of the north west border is volatile.
We knew that this WILL happen. The enemy is ready to hit and we are also doing the same. War does have its collaterals.
Pathankot, Uri and Nagrota. It’s good to brand the dead as martyrs. But that does not take away the need to assess the why of the incident.
It’s easy to identify and weed out individual failure. When it cancers out into the system, the instinct to survive ensures that ugly facts are brushed under the carpet.
No hierarchy was held accountable for failures at Nyoma, Samba, Nagrota, Machhal etc. The garb of collective blame took away the lessons needed to be learnt making the military as just another unaccountable bureaucracy of the Govt.
Today we all like to be self audited. It’s good not scientifically proven to be ineffective. E.g. In Control Systems, if a system is only given positive feedback. It becomes unstable and collapses. Similarly a system without feedback has no control and self consumes.
The military needs professional audit by HR professionals, security experts and third party groups having no stake in the existing narrative. Self analysis will never reveal the actual fault lines.
Only the nation is a holy cow. Everything else can and should be questioned for bringing out improvements. I feel that the government should take decisions through its collective wisdom and not let perceptions get in way of executive decisions that need to be timely.