Ten is a fairy tale number. A defense analyst told MSNBC last night that intelligence reports indicate about 40 terrorists came off the rafts that were dropped from a mother ship(s). And even Indian officials estimated earlier that there were at least two dozen attackers.(1)
But now the number of gunmen threatens to conveniently drop to the number neutralized by government forces. In other words, Singh's government would prefer to downplay the number of gunmen who got away.
And according to the same Post report, officials have come up with excuses for why it took the commandos "six hours" to start fighting the terrorists. Counting on my fingers and toes and referencing India's IBN TV report, it seems the length of delay was closer to nine hours.
No fairy tales in John Batchelor Land: From his latest post, Mumbai TV WMD:
Best signals source reports that the attackers numbered up to 100 with accomplices -- control agents, support personnel, scouts, transportation, that there had been several dry runs over the last months, that the scouting was scrupulous, that the attackers had acquired safe houses, safe room supplies, communications.Of course the number of actual shooters is smaller than the one for support, but if you want to begin seeing through the fog of war in India, I recommend that you tune in this Sunday to John's radio show.
The show schedule lists defense/terrorism analysts Bill Roggio, Chandrakant Pancholi, Shlok Vaidya, B. Raman; also, Malcolm Hoenlein and Aaron Klein on the massacre of Jews at Mumbai's Nariman House.
And Victor Davis Hanson will lead off the first portion of the show with his take on the broad implications of The Battle of Mumbai.
See the schedule at John's website for the time of each interview.
The air schedule for John's Sunday show is confusing for newcomers. For those who have come to trust John's reporting and that of his sources the hassle is worth it, but here's a map through the radio maze:
The entire show is six hours back-to-back. The first three hours originate from WABC radio in New York from 7-10 PM, Eastern Time.
The second three-hour part of the show originates from KFI in Los Angeles at 7-10 Pacific Time (i.e., starting at 10 PM Eastern Time after the WABC show ends).
WMAL in Washington only picks up the first two hours of the WABC show. KSFO in San Francisco picks up the entire three hours from WABC, but this airs in a time slot that competes with the KFI broadcast -- from 7-10 PM, Pacific Time.
(WMAL and KSFO are WABC sister stations; KFI is a different company.)
So, if you want to take in the entire six hours on Sunday, your best bet is to listen online to the WABC show, then switch to the KFI show online. You can quickly access all the online sites for the radio stations by clicking on the station icons at John's website.
The catch is that I don't think KFI broadcasts are available online outside the USA. The only workaround is the podcast on the KFI website, which is posted on Monday, the day after the broadcast.
1) NDTV: "Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh said that around 20-25 terrorists entered Mumbai their nationalities are yet to be ascertained. Five terrorists have been killed so far, many escaped and one has been arrested."
(H/T) Long War Journal
The date of the announcement/interview is unclear because while the NDTV report is dated Wednesday, November 26, from the text it's obviously been updated for Thursday.)
On Thursday CNN and/or Fox also reported that the terrorists were approximately two dozen in number.
Of course, the fog of war is still in effect. As Batchelor has said many times, "In war, the first three reports are always wrong." But 10 for the number of terrorists is hard to swallow.