Pakistan Air Force employs air-to-air refuelling skill successfully

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ISLAMABAD (APP) – Pakistan Air Force (PAF) on Sunday employed air-to-air refuelling skill successfully thus attaining another milestone to prove itself ‘second to none’ as envisioned by Father of the Nation Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

The attainment of the capability was a part of the on-going High-Mark-10 exercises kicked off a week ago. The first Air-to-Air Re-Fuller aircraft of Pakistan Air Force which had joined PAF in the mid of December-2009, today took active part in the exercises and ably re-fuelled two fighter aircraft in the PAF’s inventory, a senior officer of PAF said while talking to APP here.

The PAF is expecting delivery of three similar re-fuelling aircrafts by June this year. By virtue of its ability to refuel Air Defence aircraft in air, PAF’s overall capability in terms of its effectiveness to defend the airspace of the motherland has significantly enhanced, he said.

The area of exercise High Mark-10 is spread over the entire country from Skardu in the North up to the Arabian Sea in the South. The exercise has been tailored to include joint operations with extensive participation from Pakistan Army and Pakistan Navy that would further enhance might to conduct joint operations amongst the three most essential services.
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High Mark 2010: The Biggest War Games in the History of Pakistan

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By S.m. Hali :

The PAF’s five yearly ‘Exercise High Mark 2010’ has commenced to test its professional skills, capabilities and combat readiness. The countrywide exercise, which will last for nearly 60 days, will also be dovetailed with the Pakistan army’s exercise named Azm-e-Nau III and Naval operations to make it a tri-service test of mettle under realistic conditions. PAF is a support arm for the other two services, in addition to defending the aerial frontiers of Pakistan. The military exercises are organised as paper war games that may entail heavy expenses but provide authentic lessons, thus they are dispersed over a few years. ‘High Mark 2010’ comes in the backdrop of a clear threat to Pakistan, both externally and internally.

Undoubtedly, the regional environment is fraught with multiple threats. Although the Pakistani armed forces have been engaged in a war against terror for the last eight years, the counterinsurgency operations gained momentum in the last two years. Combined with the threat from extremists, our eastern neighbour has evolved a Pakistan specific new war doctrine named ‘Cold Start’, which it is in the process of testing and adapting for all the three services. The threat has compounded in the post-Mumbai attacks scenario, where Indian hawks have been propounding the conduct of surgical strikes against selected targets within Pakistan. Hence, Pakistan’s nuclear assets have been under a threat from external forces, who would like to deprive the country of its strategic weapon under one pretext or the other.

Simultaneously, terror organisations are keen to steal or hijack a nuke or two from Pakistan’s arsenal and destabilise the world by posing a nuclear threat. Whereas Pakistan’s Nuclear Command Authority’s efficacy and effectiveness is beyond the shadow of doubt, and its nuclear assets have been stored, deployed and dispersed in a manner where the most sophisticated countries have not been able to get even an inkling of their location, what to talk of any rag-tag militia. Yet, cognisance must be taken of the various war games conducted by the west and India in an effort to neutralise Pakistan’s nukes.

In this backdrop, ‘Exercise High Mark 2010’ is a formidable task for its planners as well as executants. To test its concepts and conduct of operations of the PAF personnel for a broad spectrum of conflict, the force has been divided into the traditional Blueland and Foxland with a realistic force ratio to obtain the best optimised and rational results. For the first time, PAF is conducting the exercise with a major reliance on IT (Information Technology) at the command, as well as field level, to provide real time inputs of communication, man, machine, weapons and employment of effort tactics.

The PAF’s recent successful interaction with the army’s counterinsurgency operations in Swat and South Waziristan, the lessons learnt from internal security operations, diverse terrain and time sensitive targeting and supporting Pak army’s ridge line operations must have enhanced its orchestration methodology for joint operations. The exposure of PAF to the high ‘tempo ops’ and least collateral damage must have raised the level of confidence of its air and ground crew. The multiple threat scenarios with near realistic exposure are likely to pay rich dividends to the force which has always operated under the handicap of a numerically superior adversary.

The freshly acquired and operationally inducted squadron of JF-17 Thunder, the Airborne Early Warning and Control System (AEW & CS), the air-to-air refueller, use of advanced UAVs and the more sophisticated precision guided munitions added to the PAF’s inventory will all come into play in both offensive and defensive roles. Operating under the enhanced threat of electronic warfare and employing electronic countermeasure techniques through various platforms must be definitely receiving due consideration. Therefore, the Indian threat of surgical strikes have already been shrugged off by Pakistani defence planners because PAF possesses the capability to strike back with extreme vigour, and inflict heavy damage to the aggressor, in a matter of hours provided there is political will. The enemy will have to think hard before undertaking a foolhardy operation like the one the Indian air chief was rearing to undertake in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks in 2008.
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PAF to launch ‘Exercise High Mark 2010’ next week

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ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) will launch its countrywide “Exercise High Mark-2010”, from next week to test its professional skills and capabilities.

Defence sources say that this kind of exercise is held after every five years and involves all aerial frontiers and bases from across the country, including the latest missile and firepower of the country.

“The exercise would continue for 40 days and, for the first time, the JF-17 Thunder will also participate in the exercise, in addition to F-16s and other fighter planes,” the sources said, adding that it would be entirely an internal activity and no foreign nation would be invited to participate in it.

It is the main peacetime activity and will cover the entire country from Skardu in the north to the Arabian Sea in the south.

The exercise would also involve the army and naval contingents to show an integrated approach to deal with any eventuality in the time of war.

It would include joint operations with extensive participation from the army and navy, which would further enhance cooperation amongst the three forces. –Daily Times

Pakistan Armed Forces War Exercises (pictures)

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