India must be prepared for a two-front war, Indian Army Chief General Bipin Rawat has warned. Not only did he warn of Chinese threats from the north as the communist nation was flexing its muscles attempting salami slicing, but also said that India must be ready for a two-front war as Pakistan may try and hit out.
"As far as the northern adversary is concerned, flexing of muscles has started. Salami slicing, taking over territory in a very gradual manner, testing our limits of the threshold is something we have to be wary about and remain prepared for situations which could gradually emerge into conflict," Rawat said at a seminar organised by the Centre for Land Warfare Studies here.
In military terms, 'salami slicing' refers to a number of small, secretive operations that are strung together to achieve a larger goal that would be difficult to accomplish in a single operation.
The Army chief hinted at the possibility of Pakistan coming forward to aid its ally China in case a conflict breaks out.
"Whether these conflicts will be confined or limited in space and time or whether they can expand into an all-out war along the entire front (remains to be seen). The western adversary taking advantage of the situation developing along the northern border is very much likely," he said.
On the nuclear deterrence, the Army Chief said, having the nuclear weapons wouldn't prevent anyone to go for a war. "Credible deterrence does not take away the threat of war. Nuclear powers don't go to war and that nuclear weapons are weapons of deterrence, yes they are. But to say that they can deter war, they will not allow nations to go to war, in our context that may also not be true," the Army Chief also said.
On Pakistan Gen Rawat said, "We don't see any scope of reconciliation, because their military, the polity, and the people in that nation have been made to believe that there is an adversary, India, which is all out to break their nations into pieces."