Russian Military Assistance During Indo-Pak War 1971

Source: Russian TV program ‘Strike Force’

Translation: youmazdatube (slight grammatical edits by FOI)

Historic document: “Confidential. December, 10, 1971. Moscow. For the DM Marshal Andrey Grechko. According to the information from our attaché in Delhi, in the first day of conflict, the Indian destroyer ‘Rajput’ sunk a Pakistani submarine by depth charges. On 4 and 9 December, Indian fast boats destroyed and damaged 10 Pakistani battle ships and vessels with P-15 missiles. In addition, 12 oil storage tanks were burning in the harbor. The Commander of the Military Intelligence Service Gen. Pyotr Ivashutin”.

On the same day, Soviet Intelligence reported that the British Naval group led by the ‘Eagle’ carrier ventrued close to the territorial waters of India. The Soviet Government immediately sent a unit of battle ships under the leadership of counter-admiral Vladimir Kruglyakov.

Vladimir Kruglyakov, the former (1970-1975) Commander of the 10th Operative Battle Group (Pacific Fleet) remembers:

“I received the order from the Chief Commander ‘To not allow access of the American Navy near the Indian military.”

-In the way of the American Navy stood Soviet cruisers, destroyers and atomic submarines equipped with anti-ship missiles.

Vladimir Kruglyakov, the former (1970-1975) Commander of the 10th Operative Battle Group (Pacific Fleet) remembers:

“We encircled them [the US] and I targeted the ‘Enterprise’ by missiles. I blocked them and didnt allow to enclose Karachi, nor to Chittagong or Dhaka”.

The Soviet ship’s missiles, at the time, were limited to a range of 300 km. Thus, to be sure, the Russian commanders had to take the risk of closing in on the American fleet.

Vladimir Kruglyakov, the former (1970-1975) Commander of the 10th Operative Battle Group (Pacific Fleet) remembers:

“The Chief Commander ordered me: ‘Lift the subs when they (the Americans) appear!’ It was done to demonstrate their need in the Indian Ocean, including the nuclear submarines. I have lifted them, and they recognized it. Then, we intercepted the American communications. The commander of the Carrier Battle Group was then the counter-admiral Dimon Gordon. He sent the report to the 7th American Fleet Commander: ‘Sir, we are too late. There are Russian atomic submarines here, and a big collection of the battleships’.

The war lasted two weeks long, and finished with Pakistani forces surrendering.

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