Contents: Author's note. Preface. Prologue. Section I: 1. A momentous decision. 2. Backdrop to operation Gibraltar. 3. Geographical features and Indian Army's appreciation. 4. The attack. 5. A Defence Minister's diary. Section II: Part. I. Military Operations: 6. Surprise: Pak offensive. 7. Operation Riddle: counter offensive. 8. Of cowardice and panic. 9. Turning the corner. 10. The stupid incident. 11. Stepping up of pressure. 12. Retreat to the Beas. 13. The Chinese Checkers. Part. II. UN and other diplomatic interventions: 14. Last phase. 15. War and diplomacy. 16. U Thant's diplomacy. 17. Ceasefire drama. Section III: 18. Preparation for role. 19. Defence Minister and the chiefs. 20. Higher direction of war. 21. A futile war. 22. Future of India-Pakistan relations: Chavan's reflections. Annexure: Statement by the Defence Minister regarding the NEFA Enquiry. Index.
"1965 War was the first all-out clash between the two nations--India and Pakistan, after the Partition in 1947.
Y.B. Chavan, India's former Defence Minister, recorded in his own hand the 22-day war. The inside story reveals:
Utter failure of intelligence on timing of Pak attack. How and why Chavan ordered IAF to launch attack without even informing the PM. Why India attacked across the international border? Reasons as per Chavan recording, "If we fail--and I cannot even imagine of it--the Nation fails".
How a Division Commander bolted from the theatre of operation. How the Army Commander sacrificed over 300 men for "the Greater Glory of his Regiment". Why the Indian army did not march into Lahore. Occasions when the Army Chief almost lost his nerve.How the Defence Minister, the Army and Air Chiefs worked as team. How PM kept his cool and emerged as a great leader in war. Was it a futile war? Did India lose in Tashkent? what was won on battlefields? Finally, how the political leadership re-established its proper relationship with the defence forces leadership and wiped out bitter memories of the 1962 India-China War.
The book is a tribute to the IAF that was deployed in war for the first time after the independence. Also to India's armoured regiments that fought valiantly and destroyed myth of superiority of the Pattons." (jacket)