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Himalayan Blunder: The Angry Truth About India's Most Crushing Military Disaster Hardcover – September 15, 2003


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 506 pages
  • Publisher: Natraj Publishers (September 15, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 8185019665
  • ISBN-13: 978-8185019666
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.7 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,071,168 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Kiwi on August 17, 2009
The Indian military set back against the Chinese attack in 1962 was the time for an honest heart-searching. Brig. Dalvi`s account of the Sino-Indian War is by far the most remarkable and authentic.

Oct 20, 1959, Ladakh:Havaldar Karam Singh and his 20-strong troop, are doing their routine border patrolling amid a heavy snowfall. In an eyewink nine men in the patrol are dead after a hailstorm of bullets, and the rest, including Karam Singh are taken prisoners. Courtesy of the Chinese Army. What stuns the Havaldar is not so much the unexpected onslaught as where it occurred: 40 kilometres right on this side of the border .

The Army Chief, General Thimmayya's worst fears about China stood confirmed. When he confronted the powers that be and requested an immediate modernisation of the Armed Forces, and special attention to Chinese designs, V.K. Krishna Menon, the Defence Minister, analysed the problem differently. In his view, General Thimmayya was a soldier of the Raj era who was alarmed easily. Pakistan, not China was India's "number one" enemy, he opined. The General's response was interesting: I understand our Defence Minister's perspective. I have regards for his ability but I'm aggrieved at his foolishness. One does not rank enemies as first, second and the rest. Perhaps, it is done in Communist politics; as an Army Chief, I do not rank enemies. The General submitted his resignation when Menon's interference breached tolerance. But a panic-stricken Nehru's emotional entreaty charmed the General into withdrawing it. In Parliament however, Nehru rose in defence of Menon: I've spoken to General Thimmayya. He blows issues out of proportion. He has unnecessarily created a misunderstanding with Krishna Menon, a veteran diplomat.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Venki on December 29, 2010
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Brig. Dalvi's account of the 1962 Sino-Indian War reads like an autopsy report: critical and incisive. This is a story about war written by a soldier who fought in the war, and this lends it more credibility. The book details the outright failures of the Indian diplomatic establishment (a.k.a. Prime Minister Nehru) which failed to forsee the imminent threat to national security and the defense establishment led by Minister Menon, which failed to provide the armed forces with the necessary means to defend the nations boundaries. Nevertheless, Brig. Dalvi did not intend to use this book as a means to settle scores or villify anyone. Instead it was meant to be an eye-opener for the establishment to learn from it's mistakes and prevent another "Himalayan Blunder" from happening. This book is a must-read for both politicians and soldiers.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Vijay Krishna on September 25, 2009
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a common theme of this book is the anguish that Sri Dalvi feels about the mistake being committed in front of his eyes. The author has done a yeoman service in writing this book.

Pros -
Very good layout
Accompanying map to explain the lay of the land
plenty of pictures
fluid language style and good typesetting.

Cons -
None i can think of

MUST read for concerned citizens to avoid a repeat of 1962 (and unfortunately, a repeat is looking likely by the day)
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