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Book review: Guts, Guns and Some Glory

A military history about the Indian armed forces sets a benchmark for thoroughness and excellence.

Book | India’s Wars: A Military History 1947-1971
Author: Arjun Subramaniam
Publisher: Harper Collins
Pages: 576
Price: Rs 799 It is a refreshing change to see a senior, serving IAF officer writing an all-encompassing tri-service military history, following in the footsteps of the great Thucydides, and closer home, Lt Gen P S Bhagat,Maj Gen DK Palit and Lt Gen S K Sinha. Most of our military history, written by retired armed forces officers, concerns their own service and are either personal accounts justifying their conduct, or provide their perception of historical events. The author has maintained a detached, scholarly approach, devoid of service and regimental loyalties or even patriotic emotions. To that extent, the book is
a benchmark. Subramaniam is widely read and his research is thorough, as is evident from72 pages of endnotes, detailed secondary sources and an elaborate index. His…