Rebuttal to A Rebuttal of My Rebuttal of The ‘Spice Miss’ Theory at Balakot

by Palepu Ravi Shankar


Today my day was made.

After three weeks I got a response on my blog ( on my views which I had expressed wherein I had proved beyond doubt that

  1. The Australian expert was flawed and probably biased.
  2. There was no way the Spice bombs would have missed at Balakot.

The response I got was as under:-

Apr 20, 6.49 to 6.54am

Certain nay Sayers have this to say

There is a simple error in calculation, btw. He states that if the approach angle was 60% and the miss was 33 meters, the missiles would have missed by a mere 17 meters, not over a hundred. But he doesn’t see that the structure is on a hillside and calculates for flat ground!

Would you like to rebut

Nay Sayers further state 

There is a basic error made by expert in the field. Here’s the diagram he offers to ‘prove’ that the miss could not have been 100 meters. Notice he calculates for flat ground while the target was clearly on a steep hillside. Just change the angle of the topography and you get the 100-meter distance easily.

Request for a rebuttal

The doubt raised is in relation to the flight geometry I had explained with a diagram and reasoning which are reproduced below.

Beyond 60 degrees the targeting is literally two dimensional. Even if the approach /dive angle (in the worst case) was 60 degrees and the height error was 33 m as shown in the photo in the article the miss distance could have been only about 17m. Not more than a hundred meters as is being propagated. For a miss of 100-200 m as shown below, the angle of attack/ dive would have to be shallow around 10-15 degrees.

The fundamental issue which has been raised is that the slope was steep. The slope has not been factored in. Had it been factored in the miss would have been 100m as claimed by the Australian Researcher.

Very genuine doubt if the Anonymous Commentator on my blog was an Australian Researcher or the DGISPR puppet or the omnipresent Argumentative Indian.

So, to disprove the doubters I took the satellite photo of the Australian Researcher with annotated trajectories and actual slopes as in the photograph. The assumed vertical datum error of 33m as has been indicated in the original photo has now been used as my datum. With this, I have transposed the distances on the slope and super imposed my diagram on the ground as shown on the photo. The resultant annotated photograph is given below.


Study the annotated photograph closely. The miss distance instead of 16.5 m might have been 20 m along the slope. In any case the slope is not so steep. So, slope has been taken care of.

After my last blog, a real expert came up with a greater explanation which is summarized below.

Both India and Pakistan follow the same geoid, Everest Datum. It is a common region. The map systems are the same. So, the height error goes out of the window.

SAR imagery should have been analyzed. Cartosat imagery of our satellite would have also been analyzed. A combination of all this would have been factored into targeting.

The Spice bomb is designed for a vertical steep dive trajectory. So, the case would have been anything but the worst case which I have based my calculations on. Additionally, the Spice has multiple modes of homing on to the target. If one fails, the other takes over. One of the modes is based on imagery matching!

Lastly the DGISPR gave it away. The Pakis conducted a tour of that area after a month and a half for journalists and chosen diplomats. From all available public reports, they were given a hurried tour and driven like sheep are done across an express highway. May be the better simile would be that had they been taken to a traditional Indian wedding of a conservative family, they would have seen the brides face for a longer time!

So at the end of it my conclusion remains firm

  1. The Australian expert opinion was flawed and probably biased.
  2. There was no way the Spice bombs would have missed at Balakot.

I am sure that the naysayers are satisfied. If not, I am going to request the MOD to construct a similar building on a mountain top on our side of the loc. I will request the Air Chief to carry out a sortie with the same targeting calculations and fire a spice bomb on that building, with the same planes and same pilots. All naysayers may submit their names to me and I will get them a free pass to be in that building. After the strike all naysayers can come and do crater examination 100 m away where the bombs fall. Unlimited cold beer and snacks will be available at the craters.

Let me know the date and time. In the mean time let me fix up the place!