After Indian election, relationship with Pakistan back in focus

May 17, 2009

After a diplomatic pause enforced by India’s lengthy election campaign, the country will soon have a new government after the ruling Congress party won an unexpectedly decisive victory.  But analysts doubt the change of government will bring a significant change of heart in India towards Pakistan.

Despite Pakistan’s offensive against the Taliban in the Swat valley, they say India has yet to be convinced the Pakistan Army is ready to crack down more widely on Islamist militants, fearing instead that it will selectively go after some groups, while leaving others like the Afghan Taliban and Kashmir-oriented groups alone.  While Pakistan wants to resume talks broken off by New Delhi after last November’s attack on Mumbai, India has said it wants Islamabad to take more action first against those behind the assault, which it blamed on the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is expected to remain in office after the Congress election victory, is now likely to come under pressure from the United States to soften India’s stance towards Pakistan.  The current stand-off leaves both countries vulnerable to a fresh flare-up of tensions which could torpedo Washington’s plans for Pakistan and Afghanistan. It also complicates U.S. efforts to persuade the Pakistan Army to move troops from the Indian border to fight Taliban militants on its western border with Afghanistan.

So how will Singh respond?

Indian analysts are already arguing India must stand up to U.S. pressure to ensure its own interests are not sacrificed to those of the United States. In an editorial in the Times of India, Brahma Chellaney writes that U.S. policy — very much focused on Afghanistan — now runs counter to Indian interests. He argues that Kashmir-oriented groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba are of little interest to the United States. “Instead, Washington intends to goad New Delhi post-election to reduce border troop deployments, a step that would help Pakistan to infiltrate more armed terrorists into India.”

It may not be entirely correct to say that Washington is not interested in the Lashkar-e-Taiba.  The group was cited in media reports as a suspect in the London underground bombings in 2005, potentially making it as much of a global threat as al Qaeda. But Chellaney’s comments do underline a traditional suspicion in the region – both in India and Pakistan — about what is seen as a ruthless U.S. focus on its own interests.

In an editorial in The Hindu former diplomat M.K. Bhadrakumar says India must galvanise its regional diplomacy, rebuilding its once close relationship with Russia and Iran, to strengthen its hand. But he also writes that, “certainly, resumption of the composite dialogue with Pakistan ought to be a priority.”

The other question to ask is whether Pakistan and India would both be better off talking to each other directly, rather than churning their arguments through the prism of U.S. diplomacy. According to some analysts the two countries came close to a breakthrough on Kashmir in 2007 — a subject explored at length by Steve Coll in the New Yorker in March – but were unable to close the deal after then President Pervez Musharraf became embroiled in political problems that eventually forced him to step down last year.  There has been no official confirmation, and the two countries have come close to agreements on other issues before only to see them fall apart on disagreement about the exact terms.

President Barack Obama has so far been a leader in a hurry. His energetic special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Holbrooke, earned a reputation for being able to bang heads together after he brokered the Dayton peace accords in 1995.  How far can, and will, the U.S. administration go to persuade India and Pakistan to talk peace?  And equally importantly, how well will India and Pakistan manage the U.S. administration?

(Photos: Congress party supporters celebrate in Allahabad; Congress leader Sonia Gandhi with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh)

Comments

Wadosy,

What the heck man! Why are you so hell-bent on annoying the living crap outta everyone with your Neocon/PNAC/Oil nonsense? Many people here have told you that nobody here gives a rat’s a$$ about your loony agenda & yet you keep harping over the same crap over & over again. A few off-topic comments are understandable but you’ve been off-topic for weeks now. The world has bigger problems than oil/PNAC right now & the situation in Pakistan is the biggest of them all & that’s what we’re discussing here on this blog which is titled ‘Pakistan: Now or Never’. If you’ve got something to say about Pakistan, do so otherwise you can take your neocon bashing oil agenda to some neo-liberal blog & share your obsessive views there.

Posted by Mortal | Report as abusive
 

given the results of the election, it may be that the voters of india have more sense than indian neocons.

indian voters, however, dont have much of a chance against the PNAC propaganda and black ops machinery, which will do whatever it must to keep the project going.

 

Everyone,

I’m quite convinced now, that this wadosy person is ‘a few quarters shy of a buck’. PLEASE ignore him/her.

Posted by Mortal | Report as abusive
 

meanwhile, you cant answer any of the questions.

 

Myra,

The Indo-Pak relations, though important, was not the main reason why millions of Indians voted for the new government. There are more critical issues for the new Indian government to fix before it looks beyond its western border. Don’t expect Dr. Singh inviting Mr Zardari to New Delhi because Washington wants it.

There is a strong consensus in the Indian political parties to resolve the border dispute issue. However, Pakistan cannot deliver on the peace agreements owing to its vicious internal politics. Since 1999, every peace initiative has been sunk by the Pak army and terrorists combine. India will restart the bi-lateral talks with Pakistan when it’s convinced that Pakistan can walk the talk.

If there’s a key to change things in Pakistan one way or the other, it lies with the United States – the largest donor – and not India. Americans have given that mandate on November 4th, 2008 – not last week. I’m still waiting for a game changer from the Obama administration.

Posted by Nikhil | Report as abusive
 

meanwhile, you cant answer any of the questions.
- Posted by wadosy

Ok we will try, what are your questions ??

Posted by punjabiyaar | Report as abusive
 

IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY
IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY IGNORE WADOSY

Unless there is such a compelling reason, but then get ready for posts ending with a question and no substance. The hypothesis will be an assumption that will always lack a reference from an original source. In other words, get ready to get stuck in the oil slick and forget the real and immediate dangers.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

wadosy

—what’s are the 3 questions?

Posted by anup | Report as abusive
 

Myra:
I wathed the video and yes, you are right that 3rd party intervention has been there– how much and in what form will and SHOULD become public when the deal is done. But 3rd party mediation in Kashmir issue should be limited as back channel talks only and not allowed to become public. I see probable Noble peace Prize here.

@I don’t personally subscribe to the theory that Congress is better placed than the BJP to make peace.
-Me neither. But that electorate chose congress with a big margin over BJP definitely shows that elctorate is going for moderates in terms of internal issues. I believe such a heavy loss was more to do with a lack of good PM candidate. Myra, Bajpai as a person and as a statesman was great and he was arguably the single determinant that BJP at that time came into power. Now, India is well placed for the talks that will start sooner or later. Is Pakistan ready for the talks at that time and I hope that the talks do not start from scratch.

A million dollar issue:
India-Pak talks have been derailed by terror strikes. There are chances that terror strike will happen again. That means fresh talks between India-Pak will again derail. No brainer that remove this limiting factor. So what should be preventing Pakistan from removing this factor and neutralizing these terrorists? They ahve started hurting pakistan itself. what has been preventing US/UK to ask Pakistan to do so–this is from their POV–links of these terrorists with FATA terrorists and GwOT and LeT has 200,000 trained terrorists, trusting NYU Video. It is like Pakistan holding a knife and having peace talks. isn’t it?

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

ANUP:
ENJOY:

the first: who benefits from attacks on india and pakistan that make so much trouble that pipeline cannot be built east, to india, china and pakistan?

the second: what happens to india when the kommissars’ neocon buddies attack iran, close hormuz, and india suddenly finds itself short of about 75% of its normal oil supply?

the third: why did you sign on with the neocons?

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

Myra: I find it odd that the onus always appears to be on India as in they say India has yet to be convinced the Pakistan Army is ready to crack down more widely on Islamist militants

The reality is that Pakistani Army (and Government) has yet to do enough to convince India that it is serious about peace.

 

@ Myra,
I agree the Indian bureaucracy is such that whichever party is in power, the overall policy towards Pakistan remains the same.
In one of your news items you wrote:
Pakistan — in the difficult position of not being able to announce publicly a change of policy without acknowledging activities it denied in the past — insists it is also being targeted by the militants and is determined to stop them.
Link:
http://www.reuters.com/article/GCA-Afgha nistan-Pakistan/idUSTRE54G0T520090517

Don’t you think that coming out clean on this matter will be beneficial for all?

Another question comes up is whom do Indian government talks to?
1. The civilian government which can’t do much by itself?
2. The army which even by Obama’s observation is misguided in its obsession with India?
3. Or the ISI which I believe is no friend of India?

Also, though now Pakistan has started saying that Taliban not India is the enemy number one. Good if you just take a cursory glance. But wouldn’t it be better if Pakistan can say India is not an enemy?

Yes, we have opposing views on Kashmir but that need not make us enemies. Every problem has a solution, fighting is not one of them.

All Indians, even those who are antagonistic towards Pakistan here on the blog will agree that India doesn’t care much if Pakistan minds its own business. Its just that incidents like Kargil, Mumbai attacks, etc have really affected us a lot. And its not Hindus alone. Did you know that the terroists killed in Mumbai encounters where not allowed by the Ullemas to be buried in Indian terroritory? Can you imagine why such a thing happened? Can you imagine why Indian bloggers here sound so disgruntled with “Hamare Paas Bomb hai” rant? Can you as a person forget such incidents if you or your family members are the ones who suffered such horrific tragedies? Will you not be skeptical towards the perpertrators of such crime? On whom does the onus sit for rebuilding the trust? If we are asking for some concrete action from Pakistan to show its sincerity then whats wrong in it?
Can you give us an instance of Pakistan going after India specific terrorist outfits like LeT?

Posted by Aman | Report as abusive
 

@Myra,

The ONLY way there can be peace between India and Pakistan, the civilian government AND the Pak Military must together unilaterally declaire that India is not their enemy.

Yes, that means the conniving, deceitful lying Pakistani Army sitting in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, all they have to do is say “INDIA IS NOT THE ENEMY”.

This will echo loud and will bring hugely needed prosperity to Pakistan.

If the Pakistani Army along with its ISI wing and the civilian govt can say this together and declare it, the people will follow.

This could wash away the misgivings and misdeeds of the PA and ISI that they have engaged in the past. It is an opportunity to turn a new leaf and leave the past behind and it will also generate a wave of anti-militant sentiment across Pakistan and will strengthen Pakistani unity as well as increase Pakistani’s image.

The question is, can the Pakistani army do the right thing and think for the true good of its country, rather than its own selfish, deluded and misguided direction and personal profit at the heads of average Pakistani’s.

The Pak Army and ISI MUST be engaged in this manner to reconsider how it views India. This is the only way to precipate peace quickly, bring trade and get rid of Islamicist Militants, “miscreants” and “non-state actors”.

Obama and Clinton need to make this count, they really need to make Pakistan understand: “INDIA IS NOT THE ENEMY!”.

Posted by Global Watcher | Report as abusive
 

Wadosy here are your answers:

1. Who benefits from attacks on india and pakistan that make so much trouble that pipeline cannot be built east, to india, china and pakistan?

Its USA and NeoCon Zionist.

2. what happens to india when the kommissars’ neocon buddies attack iran, close hormuz, and india suddenly finds itself short of about 75% of its normal oil supply?

India will try to get oil access from neo con zionists or switch off 75% of its machinery and vehicles which needs oil.

3. why did you sign on with the neocons?

Because we wanted it.

I hope you are answered and will not come up again with new Questions.

Guys lets get back to original discussion.

Posted by punjabiyaar | Report as abusive
 

I agree with you wadsoy…simple question in regards to Indian intrest but can NOT get an answer….

Maybe they are too obssesed with Pakistan!!!

Posted by Ali | Report as abusive
 

Myra,

Is there any way to ban trolls? Certain indivuals are most certainly disrupting valid and valuable dialog. If the individual has been warned repeatedly a ban is certainly warranted if they continue their disruptive behviour.

Posted by Keith | Report as abusive
 

Myra,

Why the focus on Pakistan? The Indian elections were very much about local issues. The very act of electing Congress (a party which like US democrats often gets associated or accused of being lax on security issues) means that most Indians do not consider external matters to be pressing. I doubt Pakistan will be back on the agenda or at the top of it any time soon (short of a Mumbai encore). The Indian public certainly doesn’t seem overly pre-occupied with Pakistan.

Combine India’s non-chalence with Pakistan’s pressing issues. They are only beginning to tackle a terrific insurgency and their methods are creating a domestic refugee crisis. All while watching their economy deteriorate to its worst in decades and the US digs its heels in deeper next door. One would hope that India is the last thing on the mind of most Pakistanis. And while I doubt that’s the case, it does seem that most Pakistanis (for the moment anyway) are less pre-occupied with India…which means that the prospects for negotiations are likely to be diminished in the near term.

Posted by Keith | Report as abusive
 

Why should India do anything at all with Pakistan?

It will be mired in internal conflicts and slowly its economy will go down the drain and with it, anyone in Kashmir who wants to join Pakistan will be thinking twice.

Ok, so that leaves the call for independence.
But independent from what I ask? As a landlocked country, they have to depend on either India or the remnants of Pakistan for their supplies, which is going to be very difficult if they secede from both. So any sane Kashmiri should think long and hard about what are they trying to achieve for their children. India is on a growth path and has a bright future ahead of her. Its better to be associated with a winner than be swayed by so-called separatist leaders who have just brought guns and death to the valley.

Posted by Andy Rebeiro | Report as abusive
 

I have full sympathy with my Pakistani Brothers and sisters. The grassroot ordinary citizens of Pakistan must wake up to the reality that they never had any good governmnt ever since they got Pakistan. Why? Why did you let military dictatorships, and militants/terrorists cloud your vision that India is your enemy? Why didn’t you elect your strong democratic government to represent all peace/prosperity loving people? Who suffered in 4 terrible unnecessary wars with India? Why didn’t Musharaff finish these Talebans/terrorists after the Russians left Afghanistan? What did Musharraf do with over 10 Billion US aid to fight Talebans/terrorists lodged in Pakistan? Why did your government deny that 24/11 attacks on Mumbai were by Pakistani based terrorist groups? Why did Zardari sign a peace agreement with Talebans? Why was Pakistan reluctant to fight/finish Talebans until they was seen marching to capital Islamabad after taking over Buner? I agree, Now or Never for Pakistan. All Pakistanis should support this belated Army action ag

 

Here are a few answers to the comments/questions above.

1) Why the focus on Pakistan when the Indian electorate was more interested in other issues?

The answer at one level is very straightforward – it’s a blog about Pakistan. But it’s also clear that the United States is going to try to rope India in one way or the other given its preoccupation with Pakistan.

The former ambassador to Delhi, Robert Blackwill, goes into this in detail in an article in Yale Online. In summary, he says hyphenation has made a comeback in the minds of the new U.S. administration, so India needs to work out how to handle it:

http://yaleglobal.yale.edu/display.artic le?id=12361

2) Why can Pakistan not declare that India is not the enemy?

My understanding is that the Pakistan Army genuinely believes that there is a threat from India. I know from the Indian viewpoint that is hard to understand, but if you talk to people from both countries you can see why threat perceptions change depending on which side of the border you are on.

Siachen is a classic case where both countries misunderstood each others’ intentions and ended up in a conflict they could not get out of, even though both sides have known for years that it should end.

Here are a few more recent examples:

I’m told the Pakistan Army was genuinely alarmed after Mumbai when the Indian Army went ahead with “war games” in Rajasthan to practice its Cold Start doctrine. On checking the Indian version of events, I was told these were routine military exercises which had been planned for more than a year. So you can see how perceptions differ.

Perhaps someone can tell me more about Cold Start. What function does it have other than to give the Indian military the capability to mount lightning strikes on Pakistan? And if that is indeed the case, and you were in charge of the Pakistan Army, would you not also keep your troops at the eastern border just in case?

The other classic example is over Baluchistan. Many Pakistanis are convinced that R&AW is using Indian consulates in Afghanistan to cause trouble in Baluchistan. Yet when I ask Indians about this, they tell me that R&AW is just too inefficient to carry out an operation like this. So again, very different perceptions (although I do think both countries tend to overestimate the efficiency of the other, which is an odd sort of compliment in its own way.)

Finally, you just need to look at the history of India and Pakistan to see why both countries developed very different threat perceptions. Pakistan has always tended to see India as a monolithic giant, while it was a small country, broken in two in 1971, and after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 facing Russia on one side and India (then close to Russia) on the other.

India was — in the past — far less confident and monolithic than it appeared to be to Pakistan.

And of course there’s the China factor. India felt threatened by China after 1962 and developed its nuclear bombs in response to China. But from Pakistan’s point of view, the Indian nuclear programme was a threat to Pakistan.

That’s enough. I’m not making any comment on what should happen now; but trying to make it clear why threat perceptions differ on each side of the border.

Myra

Posted by Myra MacDonald | Report as abusive
 

Andy Rebeiro writes about Kashmir: “As a landlocked country, they have to depend on either India or the remnants of Pakistan for their supplies, which is going to be very difficult if they secede from both. So any sane Kashmiri should think long and hard about what are they trying to achieve for their children. ”

Even though this blog is not the place for this, I’d like our new Indian government to take steps to diffuse public sentiments in the valley. Our military has been under lot of pressure and brutality has become a norm. They are not accountable for any of their acts and human rights violations result. This working to the advantage of Jihadi elements from Pakistan and they are fueling the fire even more. The public are becoming more and more alienated. Their hope for a peaceful life and reconciliation is reflected in their participation in Indian elections. This is the time to set up accountability to our security forces and take every measure possible that makes Kashmiri public turn friendly towards India. Right now, even though they do not like to go with Pakistan due to what is going on there, they do not want to go with India either where they have begun to perceive our military as an occupational force rather than a system in place to protect them.

See this link and select the clip

http://www.journeyman.tv/?lid=58634&quer y=Kashmir

“The Killing of Kashmir”. It brought tears to my eyes. We need to improve things there. I am proud of our security forces and it breaks my heart to see them on the wrong side of the fence. I understand their feelings and frustration, but this is where our government has to get involved and bring peace in the hearts of these beautiful people.

 

Myra says:
“My understanding is that the Pakistan Army genuinely believes that there is a threat from India”

I respectfully disagree. Since Roman times, dictators have shown external threats to justify greed for power and money. It’s an old trick. Zia, Musharraf and Pak-Army are playing the same trick. How else can army justify it’s size and budget! Fools are the Pakistani civilians, reduced to beggary and aid, refugees and displaced in their own country.

Mumbai email chain goes to a Pakistani general. So, do you see the logic? Everytime, India tried peace, ISI found an antidote!

Figure out yourself, who is killing who? Very soon, Obama will shift to Fak-Pa strategy. I feel sorry for Pakistani civilians, who never stopped believing their army. Now the civilians are getting bombed by army!

Freedom is Priceless! If someone never struggled for freedom, he would surrender it for pittance.

Posted by David | Report as abusive
 

Andy Rebeiro says:
Its better to be associated with a winner than be swayed by so-called separatist leaders who have just brought guns and death to the valley.

Thanks Andy. And some of the so-called separatist leaders got less than 1% vote in the recent elections. Rest of the separatist leaders didn’t dare prove their popularity and stayed away from votes. These separatist leaders are happy with the monthly salary and bonuses from ISI.

Posted by David | Report as abusive
 

Myra,

May be the pakistani army believes that there is a threat from India but
1. Can this justify something like Kargil? That too when peace talks where going on?
2. Can this justify state sponsored terrorism as a way to counter India’s conventional army?
3. Most importantly, is this belief rational?

If both parties sincerely believe that there should be peace then what is topping them from achieving it?
From India’s point of view, it is the lack of confidence and trust it has in the Pakistani government. For one know one knows who calls the shot. And Pakistan itself talks in tow voices and does a flip-flop evey now and then as is evident in the Mumbai attack case.
every one has an opinion, India’s opinion about Pakistan comes from what it has experienced in the past.

You asked about Cold Start. I don’t know much about it but what I have read, tells me it came after India’s experience of moving its troops to the border during 2001-02 stand-off with Pakistan.
Using this methodology, the Indian army can quickly launch counter-strikes (offensive) against the enemy using its defensive troops deployed at the border. This also means moving its offensive troops (which haven’t been used in any if the battles yet, since it takes weeks to move the army with all its heavy machines). This effectively has meant that the difference between defensive troops (deployed at the border) and offensive troops held back at the barracks is reduced with the defensive troops having its own set of heavy weaponry.
And yes, this was developed only keeping in mind the Pakistan army’s adventurist attitude at the border during Kargil. Moreover, this is effective only when India’s political class has the will to take on Pakistan. It gives the army the advantage to mount counter strikes before international pressure forces them to pull back as had happened in the past.

You also mentioned about threat perception from each side of the border. Can you elaborate as to why most Pakistanis have this paranoia about India attacking them? Has India been an agressor in the past?

Posted by Aman | Report as abusive
 

as an indian citizen i plea to new government,our army n our intelligence agency to build good relations with pakistan.i dont know y our army n some hindu extremists in our country didnt want good relations with pakistan.

 

I’m told the Pakistan Army was genuinely alarmed after Mumbai when the Indian Army went ahead with “war games” in Rajasthan to practice its Cold Start doctrine. On checking the Indian version of events, I was told these were routine military exercises which had been planned for more than a year. So you can see how perceptions differ.
Perhaps someone can tell me more about Cold Start. What function does it have other than to give the Indian military the capability to mount lightning strikes on Pakistan? And if that is indeed the case, and you were in charge of the Pakistan Army, would you not also keep your troops at the eastern border just in case?
The other classic example is over Baluchistan. Many Pakistanis are convinced that R&AW is using Indian consulates in Afghanistan to cause trouble in Baluchistan. Yet when I ask Indians about this, they tell me that R&AW is just too inefficient to carry out an operation like this. So again, very different perceptions (although I do think both countries tend to overestimate the efficiency of the other, which is an odd sort of compliment in its own way.)

- Posted by Myra

As someone who has studied these issues in some depth and with more privileged sources, let me add my two cents. First off, every military officer know that the training and readiness cycle is an unforgiving god (especially for an army as large as the IA) who can only be interrupted for the most grave of reasons. For this reason, it is highly unlikely that the Indians would have called off the exercise in Rajasthan following the attack. Had they called it off, then the world would have had reason to be worried. And I am fairly sure the Paks understood this point as well, which is why their claims of feeling threatened are severely exaggerated. Had the roles been reversed the Paks would not have called off a scheduled exercise either.
Next the issue of Cold Start. A lot of media hype over this doctrine is over the top. The Indian Army is transitioning from attrition to maneuver warfare. Part and parcel of this paradigm shift is the implementation of smaller, more mobile task forces. Yes, that means a more capable IA. And yes that means faster mobilization times along the border with Pakistan. However, given that the Indian Army has shown a mobilization timeframe of 3 weeks (vs. mere days for the PA), it’s safe to say that this doctrine will merely help the IA catch up. It’s not some ticket to being able to pull off ‘lightning strikes’ across Pakistan. Next, any serious India watcher (and I don’t doubt that most Paks fall in this category) would know that Cold Start has a lot to to with inter-service rivalry. The Indian Navy is pushing to be premier power projection service (like the USN is to the United States) while the Indian Air Force is demonstrating that it can provide options (ie. air strikes) to policy makers who wish to respond to terrorism or challenges to Indian sovereignty. So the Army has come up with a doctrine that, of course, emphasizes the need for fast moving ground forces to respond, that relegates the other two services to supporting roles.
As far as the principle behind the doctrine, I accept that it can be viewed as belligerent. But even then it is conditional on what Pakistan does. The doctrine is designed to retaliate against a Pakistan backed terrorist attack by creating costs for Pakistan (in terms of territory) for supporting terrorism, while operating below the nuclear threshold (there is wide consensus that Pakistan would not have too many qualms about losing non-Punjabi territory in major hostilities with India) The activation of the doctrine could simply be avoided by Pakistan making a genuine effort to crack-down on terrorism and co-operating with Indian authorities when attacks do occur. And again, given the mobilization timelines of Cold Start and the mobilization abilites and capabilities of the Pak Army, it’s not far-fetched to say that the PA could afford to do more on terrorism and still maintain its readiness along the Indian border.
Finally the RAW-Baloch tie-up… I don’t doubt that there is probably some contact between Balochi groups and RAW just like there are well proven linkages between anti-India groups and the ISI. But that should serve as no excuse for Pakistan’s paranoia. Surely, if it is excusable for Pakistan to send over waves of insurgents daily into Kashmir then a few phone calls between RAW and the Balochis is tolerable. I sense a double-standard here on the part of Pakistan. They want to be able to continue to support the insurgency in Kashmir while claiming that India should stop any and all contact with insurgents in Pakistan. Clearly, a grand bargain is called for here. Is Pakistan up for it?

Posted by Keith | Report as abusive
 

@My understanding is that the Pakistan Army genuinely believes that there is a threat from India.
@Pak view of India as Monolithic Giant/1971 war/Pak facing Russia on one side and India (then close to Russia) on the other.
–Myra, since when Pakistan is scared off India? The history proves otherwise by the fact that “tiny” Pakistan feels so confident to take on the India, such as in 1965 War (a clearcut attack), killing millions next door and providing all the genuine reasons to push India into involvement, Kargil War in 1999 (when India was nuclear). So Pak can afford to take on Monolithic Giant Nuclear India. Wow! Myra, these are no signs of Pakistan getting scared off India. Rather Pak knows Indian History, Indian foreign policy/diplomacy, the Indian leaders for them to attempt to be aggressive. Myra all this is no preception, the wars on India are a reality.

@PA genuinely alarmed/Indian Army “war games”/Cold Start doctrine
Myra, Keith has tackled this very nicely. In any case Cold Start doctrine is post 2004 phenomenon which doesnot expalin pakistan behaviour pre-2004. It is just one more reason to add to the laundary list of PA to explain their anti-India stance. I see not only Pakistanis but media buys it.

@The other classic example is over Baluchistan. Many Pakistanis are convinced that R&AW is…..
-Keith again dealt with the issue. IA and RAW are paid to do what they do. It is normal for spy agencies to be present in other countries for national security. Indian RAW came into existence after 1962 war (?), while ISI is there since 1947. Spy agencies become a problem only when they indulge in destructive tactics, like ISI has been doing since its birth in India. PERHAPS, RAW did these activities in Balochistan; but stopped by ex-Indian PM Gujral in 1990s if you recall. Moreover Sikh militanciies supported by pak was the big reason for RAW to be in Pakistan.
Myra: Pakistanis/PA are also convinced that RAW aids Taliban. Don’t you think this is absurd?

Myra: I have asked this before. Is it not fair that India asks Pakistan to shut off terrorist production and export to India/kashmir. You watched that youtube video–200,000 LeT-trained terrorists are in Pakistan. It is like a force.
Is it fair on India’s part to question Pakistan’s sincerity if Pak comes to the table for talks while making a phone call to step up terrorism in Kashmir and in India. isn’t it like holding a knife during peace talks? Is there a point in it? This is keeping in mind that in addition to kargil war, pak-supportted terrorism has historically derailed India-Pak talks. Or are we back again to the baseless/no evidence Pak’s perception of India as a giant that will crush them. India does not have perception, but evidence about pakistan–if you remember that ISI bombed Indian embassy in Kabul and Mumbai, Punjab terrorism, even in North East India.

Media and powers for their respective reasons are playing along with Pakistan in this India-Pak balancing game of politically correctness even as LeT etc kills innocents in India/Kashmir. All this is historical reality and going on as I write. But then it is tough to face the reality but easy to recite the perceptions like poetry.

With all due respect to sane pakistani citizens and the West, terrorism is an industry for pakistan and the West is promoting that while thankless Pakistanis curse America/West. Perhaps the Pakistanis who curse are genuine, since they do not feel the money since it gets siphoned off to buy bullets for Indians or to some 10%. No wonder Mr. Haqani wants no management of US oversight on the aid, while sane Pakistani writer like Mr. Ahmed Rashid favor accoutability and US oversight. Guess what- nothing will change with passing the US Bills, the crafty Pak will find a way to bypass that. So what;s the solution, remove the destination where this money goes and that is terrorists in kashmir. It is not wrong to say that Pakistan on its own has not enough $$$ to buy guns for terrorists. It is the West that gives them the $$$ that the Pak is able to maintain terrorism. All points down to one thing, make PAK cleanse all the hyphenated terrrist groups in all four directions.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

Myra

“Siachen is a classic case…”

— If Russia encroaches upon the uninhabituated & barren parts of Alaska, then would it be madness on the part of the US to retaliate their moves?

Posted by anup | Report as abusive
 

it is important for India as a stable country surrounded by troubled nations to prioritize and sort out issues and of course the primary one is tackle is Pakistan.

 
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