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Changing Modes of Warfare and Bharat’s Adaptiveness towards it

Niranjan Bhombe

Rajshekhar Hariharan

20 October 2022

"The On-going conflict of Russia-Ukraine is sufficient to aware the world about the non-conventional way of ....."

Since the ancient times, warfare has always been in the spotlight of the Human Civilization. Though the modes of warfare have evolved with time and technology but the end goal always remains the same for any entity/organization/Country, dominance, power, area etc.  The tactics of warfare in its terminology are classified by the generations of it, they are:  1st generation Warfare, 2nd Generation Warfare, 3rd Generation Warfare, 4th generation warfare and the 5th Generation warfare.


1st Generation Warfare:  It refers to the conflicts in the ancient and post-classical periods that were fought with a large number of men, using line and column tactics and under state control. The cavalry forces were also part of this generation warfare where the victory was dependent on the number of soldiers in the army possessed.


2nd Generation warfare:  This term is credited to be coined by the Americans in the 1989, which refers to the Early Modern Strategies adopted which included the utilization of the rifled musket and breech loading weapons. This strategy also inducted the use of Machine guns and indirect firing. The game of number of soldiers became needless because an army with rifles and artillery can inflict a lot of damage to the enemy from a fair distance.


3rd Generation Warfare:  This term also got its accreditation in 1989 by the Americans, referring to the tactics of warfare used after the Wehrmacht’s (Unified armed forces of Nazi Germany) development of the Blitzkreig (a term used to describe a method of offensive warfare designed to strike a swift, focused blow at an enemy using mobile, manoeuvrable forces, including armoured tanks and air support)  which focuses more on the speed, stealth, and surprise to bypass the enemy lines and destroy their forces from the rear.

4th Generation Warfare: This generation of warfare is somewhat different from the above three, as the nations who have been losing their monopoly on wars and battles the role of non-state actors gets inducted into this. Majority of the people have a misconception that non-state actors can only be terrorists, but actually non-state actors cannot be completely comprehended. The role of Non-Governmental Organizations and civil societies also comes under the category of Non-State Actors. This generation is considered to be a decentralized form of warfare blurring the borders between war and politics, as well as soldiers and civilians.


5th Generation Warfare: This generation of warfare is the most dynamic and is also known as Hybrid Warfare. This involves mostly non-kinetic activity, such as social engineering, usage of cutting edge technologies like Information technologies and artificial intelligence to induce Cyber-attacks, disinformation campaigns etc. The parts of fifth generation warfare also include Psychological warfare, Information warfare, Cyber warfare, Biological Warfare and Grey Zone Warfare (the Space between peace and war where state and non-state actors engage in competition).



Bharat’s Strategy to tackle the Hybrid warfare

The On-going conflict of Russia-Ukraine is sufficient to aware the world about the non-conventional way of fighting the war. The recent amendments in the IT Law Act 2000 by the Government, regarding the spread of misinformation through the social media platforms is evidence in itself for the actions taken. The Introduction of Section 66A abrogates the sending of Offensive Messages and imposes penalty on the convicted. The induction of Cyber cells in various states, also creating cyber helpline for cases affiliated to cyber-crimes are some initiatives by the government, which will help Bharat to strengthen its cyber defence mechanism. The Government has also made sure that authenticated channels are formed for conveying of accurate information to the public like social media accounts which represent the particular departments. The initiative of celebrating the Cyber Jagrukta Diwas by the government was another step towards spreading awareness for the cyber security. 

Bharat’s Air Chief Marshal V.R. Chaudhari said that “Today, we are faced with a wide variety of threats, but a distinct challenge lies in the convergence into hybrid wars. To counter such threats, we need to build and maintain a technological edge over our adversaries and prepare for hybrid warfare. This makes indigenous research and development and production wait of platforms, sensors, weapons or networking, very critical for future capability building,”






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