“Compared to their Indian counterparts who still have to erect stone walls to keep the wind out of the border area, the PLA facilities are more advanced and will be ready for any possible battle,” a military expert in Beijing said, adding that “once a temporary post, observation post 5592 is now a permanent 24-hour observation post with 24/7 military observers stationed there. “The video shows the observation post, which is built of blast proof walls, with internal temperature maintained at about 18 degrees Celsius when the outside temperature is below -20 degrees Celsius. The soldiers also reportedly get to eat (homemade) mutton hot pot. PLA fighters are equipped with high-tech weapons, including heavy machine guns, mortars and off-road armored vehicles. “5592 is the first line of defense. You can observe every move in that area at any time, report various situations to us at any time and formulate countermeasures in time”, said Li Xin, an instructor of the Gamba Battalion, a border defense regiment of the Tibet Military Region.Rajiv Ranjan, a military observer in New Delhi, said the Indian government has also provided integrated logistical support for border troops, including winter clothing and equipment from partners such as the U.S. “Indian logistical support has been improved.” (By Minnie Chan)Hindustan Times, Jan. 5, article: Ladakh was the starting point. India-China relations are getting to be complicated.
Eight months after the Indian and Chinese armies got locked in a military standoff and the two sides completed eight rounds of senior commander-level military consultations, negotiations are still going on. A senior Indian official said, “We are preparing for the long haul, while the ultimate goal is to get the heavy armored forces of both armies back to their base stations”. While the Ladakh standoff may be resolved with the passage of time, China’s attitude toward India will not change because of the perceived complicity of the Modi government with the United States. An Indian security expert said, “The two emerging powers need to find a balance, otherwise there will be friction”.
(N.B. The South China Morning Post article can be seen here and the Hindustan Times article here to read the quotes, selectively included in the above, in correct perspective.)