Between the lines: Obama’s comments on Kashmir

November 8, 2010

nubra reducedPresident Barack Obama’s words on relations with Pakistan were always going to be carefully scripted during his visit to India, where even to say the word “Kashmir”  aloud in public can raise jitters about U.S. interference in what New Delhi sees as a bilateral dispute.

So first up, here’s what he had to say during a news conference in New Delhi with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in response to a question about what role the United States could play in resolving the Kashmir dispute (NDTV has the video).

“With respect to Kashmir, obviously this is a long-standing dispute between India and Pakistan; as I said yesterday, I believe that both Pakistan and India have an interest in reducing tensions between the two countries. The United States cannot impose a solution to these problems but I have indicated to Prime Minister Singh that we are happy to play any role that the parties think is appropriate in reducing these tensions. That’s in the interests of the region; it is in the interests of the two countries involved and it is in the interests of the United States of America.

“So my hope is that conversations will be taking place between the two countries; they may not start on that particular flashpoint; there may be confidence building measures that need to take place, but I am absolutely convinced that it is both in India’s and Pakistan’s interest to reduce tensions and that will enable them I think to focus on the range of both challenges and opportunities that each country faces.”

“I do want to make this point though, that I think Prime Minister Singh throughout his career and throughout his prime ministership has consistently spoken out both publicly and privately on his desire, his personal commitment to reduce tensions between India and Pakistan and for that I very much commend him. I think Prime Minister Singh is sincere and relentless in his desire for peace.  And so my hope is that both sides can, over the next several months, several years, find mechanisms that are appropriate for them to work out what are these very difficult issues.”

A quick reading between the lines suggests that he is unfraid of referring to Kashmir in public and keeping it on the agenda, while also acknowledging that resolving the dispute may take years rather than months, and that the two countries might need to build confidence by agreeing on other issues first. He also steered a middle course between Pakistan’s insistence that Kashmir is the core issue, and India’s demand that ”cross-border terrorism” must end before it will agree to talk.

Obama has moved quite some distance since his 2008 election campaign, when he raised hackles in India by suggesting a resolution of the Kashmir dispute could help in the war in Afghanistan by convincing Pakistan to focus on tackling militants holed up on its border rather than its traditional enemy.

“The most important thing we’re going to have to do with respect to Afghanistan, is actually deal with Pakistan,” Obama said in an interview with MSNBC in October 2008.  “We should probably try to facilitate a better understanding between Pakistan and India and try to resolve the Kashmir crisis so that they can stay focused not on India, but on the situation with those militants.”

Within a month of him giving that interview, Pakistan-based gunmen attacked Mumbai, killing 166 people in a three-day siege. India blamed the Lashkar-e-Taiba, a militant group once nurtured by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency to fight India in Kashmir, and broke off talks. When the dust has settled and the history books written on the Afghan war, Mumbai may well come to be seen as a turning point when Obama’s hopes that a Kashmir settlement might help turn the tide in Afghanistan were dashed.

But then pay close attention to what happened next, as understanding what went wrong will be key to predicting the chances of any future improvement in relations between India and Pakistan.

After a six-month lull and with a renewed mandate after a national election in India, Prime Minister Singh met President Asif Ali Zardari in the Russian town of Yekaterinburg in June 2009 for the first high-level talks since Mumbai. After a flurry of diplomatic activity aimed at easing tensions between the two countries. Singh held more talks with Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, this time in Sharm-el-Sheikh in Egypt. Then, even after running into  criticism at home from politicians and a jingoistic media which accused him of being too soft of Pakistan, Singh insisted on pressing ahead with peace talks

Hence Obama’s words of praise for Singh’s commitment to peace at their news conference in Delhi.  But after that the trail went cold . What went wrong?

In October 2009 in Chicago, the United States arrested David Headley, a Pakistani American accused of scouting out targets in Mumbai before switching allegiance to al Qaeda-linked militant commander Ilyas Kashmiri and plotting an attack in Denmark.  Headley, who has since turned witness for the prosecution, provided fresh insight into why Mumbai happened in the way it did - see my story on testimony given by Headley to Indian investigators, based on Indian government documents.

The details he provided — again according to the Indian government documents — also suggested that many other targets in India were under consideration for attack by different Pakistan-based militants, even after Mumbai. In other words, if Singh had continued peace talks with Pakistan he would have been exposed to political criticism at a time when he could not be sure there would be no more big attacks in India.

 We’ll come back to that lower down, as there are many sides to this story, but for now let’s stick to the timeline. As a caveat, I’d also add that this timeline is from the perspective of India-Pakistan relations, and their influence on the war in Afghanistan — Afghan specialists would probably see it differently.

By January this year, analysts had concluded that any hope of an easing of tensions between India and Pakistan would come too little, too late to make much difference to the war in Afghanistan. That same month, the idea of reaching a peace deal with the Taliban made it onto the international agenda at the London conference on Afghanistan. And as the months went by the possibility of holding talks, once seen as beyond the pale, then  gathered traction until all parties to the conflict are by now considering a peace deal.

In the interim, India and Pakistan reverted to their “one step forward, two steps back” approach.  An agreement between Singh and Gilani reached in April in Bhutan to hold more talks foundered during a rather sour meeting between the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan in July.

Scroll forward now to Obama’s visit to India.  Despite his offer of  U.S. support to India for a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council – something that will take years to come to fruition — his carefully chosen words on Kashmir and on relations between India and Pakistan do little to change the overall dynamics.

As the documents on Headley’s testimony suggest, Pakistan has a hard time keeping groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba in check when al Qaeda and its affiliates appear to be waging a more successful – or at least more eye-catching – global jihad in Afghanistan and beyond.  Reading through his testimony, it is also clear how much the LeT is ideologically committed to Kashmir — many of its commanders have lost  relatives fighting there — and how difficult it might be to disarm the group without movement on a political settlement.  It is also clear why the latest summer of unrest in Kashmir might have made it even harder for Pakistan to control some of its militants, whose zeal on ending what they see as Indian oppression in the region has them straining at the leash.

From an Indian point of view, any prime minister who holds peace talks runs the risk of being embarrassed by an attack on Indian targets which coincides with his or her diplomatic initiative.  Prime Minister Singh made that point in his news conference with Obama. Personally I was struck by the way he used the word “request” rather than “demand” in this comment:

“As far as India’s relations with Pakistan are concerned, I have always maintained a strong, peaceful moderate Pakistan is in the interests of India; is in the interests of South Asia, and the world as a whole.  We are committed to engage Pakistan; we are committed to resolve all outstanding issues between our two countries including the word K; we are not afraid of that,  but it is our request that you cannot simultaneously be talking and at the same time, the terror machine is as active as ever before.  Once Pakistan moves away from this terror-induced coercion, we will be very happy to engage with Pakistan to resolve all outstanding issues.”

From an international point of view, the jihadi soup in Pakistan appears to be getting thicker and thicker, even as the country itself, to use the words of one Pakistani official, undergoes a “paradigm shift” in its readiness to tackle Islamist militants.

Headley, according to his testimony, moved relatively easily between the Kashmir-centric Laskhar-e-Taiba and Ilyas Kashmiri, with his al Qaeda inspired global agenda. But he was not alone in that. The documents also speak of two separate “setups” in Karachi to plan attacks on India using Indian Muslims. While one was run by the Lashkar-e-Taiba, the other was run by a man identified by the alias Abdur Rehman, who in turn was in contact with Kashmiri and claimed to have met Osama bin Laden.

We already know, to quote former CIA officer Bruce Riedel, that “the bad guys don’t stay in their lanes”.  What we really need to know, however, is whether the inter-mingling of militants focused on Kashmir with those favouring the global jihad is getting stronger. If so, that will have increased the threat not just to India, but to the world as a whole and, perhaps most significantly, to Pakistan.

I would also suspect that no amount of carefully chosen words by President Obama would change those dynamics.  And if that were the case, I might ask whether the Afghan Taliban can be taken out of the thickening jihadi soup by reaching a separate peace deal with them on Afghanistan.  That would depend on whether you think Afghanistan can be dealt with separately from India and Pakistan. And whether you think the Taliban are ready to deal.

(Reuters photo: the source of the Nubra river in Siachen/Pawel Kopczinski)

Comments

Myra,

Can you please share how you conclude that Pakistan is even trying to keep “groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba in check”?

Specifically, what do you mean by “in check”? Does it refer to stopping it from attacking Pakistan itself or stopping it from attacks in India?

I note that you have chosen to not mention the fact that every one of the plots discussed by Headley involved or atleast being reported to “ISI handlers”. Not one was stopped. So how exactly did you conclude that Pakistan was doing ANYTHING to keep the LeT “in check”?

Thanks

Posted by SilverSw0rd | Report as abusive
 

Myra,

It is the short sightedness of the leaders of Pakistan. They don’t really want a peaceful resolution on Kashmir, they want an imposed one, where India suffers loss of territory.

This manner of engaging must stop, also what must stop is use of militants and fictitious hijacking and use of the Kashmiri cause by Pakistan to steal and hoard more land, for geo-political expansion of a greedy creed.

The United States could have gone a little further and advocated for a renewed regional vision for the two countries in light of their troubled pasts, but he shyed away from such discussion and kept things too general.

It is apparent that Mr. Singh has a sincere to desire to resolve all disputes, but not on one-sided terms dictate by Pakistan, just because it thinks it can blackmail India with militant agitation or nuclear blackmail. India is worthy of respect and will give respect, as long as Pakistan is willing to be an honest true agent of peace brokering, without the use of assymetrical warfare.

Despite how much Pakistani’ have suffered from militantism, Pakistan is unwilling to take one the many groups that threaten NATO and the Afghan mission and in many cases, it has been suggested, aid, abet, support and protect the Haqqani, Hekmatyar and Afghan Taliban. It is also unwilling to take on others like AQ- and the Quetta Shura and TeT.

To the world, India and the United states, how can Pakistan be viewed as a sincere partner in peace, while it continues to dodge its responsibilities, despite the huge influx of aid money and its huge army? I don’t think any country in the world, despite its willingness to want to make peace can feel safe with such a incoherent, haphazard and lying neighbour. It is really all quite odd, India continually offers peace, while Pakistan builds more nxkes, from IMF and Aid money, while its people starve and its nation is again on the brink of financial disaster, as it begs for more leniency from the IMF and in the same breath expects India to resolve the Kashmir dispute? What about Pakistani’s obligations to the 1948 UN resolutions, what about freedom of Kashmiri’s in Pakistan occupied Kashmir, again for the tenth time I have mentioned this, but this topic continues to evade discussion.

Bruce Reidel is half right, the bad guys don’t stay in their lanes, but if the threat offered by Richard Armitage to Pakistan, demanding compliance and obedience on the war on terror is any indicator, the United States, can impose Pakistan to resolve issues fairly with India. India will be an agent of fairness and will give more than its share.

There is a lack of will in Islamabad for honest peace, but there is still an ever unquenchable hunger there to force India to accept terms that are unacceptable.

Yes, Kashmir is a huge issue, but does it warrant Pakistan building so many more nxke, while the real murderers of Pakistani citizens are the militants trying to overthrow the state?

Pakistani unwilliness to destroy all militants in Pakistan and ignoring constant calls by the U.S. that India is not the enemy, is predictably perplexing.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

Myra

“Personally I was struck by the way he used the word “request” rather than “demand” in this comment..”
***Myra, that is PM Singh for you. In the NDTV press conference you posted, I was struck by the word “help” rather than collaboration between US-India for XYZ issue (do not remember what) in India. Singh leans towards being a humble speaker which is good since he is neither really a politician or a crafty speaker and a harsh word from him could hurt the cause. Do you think it was intentional use of the “soft” word?

@On K-word
***Clearly Obama has used extreme caution not to use the K-word. Nothing new what he said here. He has grown up from a kid when he used K-word loosely. 8 and half days between PM Singh and Pres Obama in US and India and business deals has taken the punch out of his original mention of K-word few yrs ago. you gave good reasons, in addition for lower significance of Kashmir in solving Afghanistan problem. So K-word would be used only when it is useful to the USA, and he would not spoil relations with India over a word.

Posted by rehmat | Report as abusive
 

I’d like the Indian government to settle Kashmir on its own without any external influence. Now is the right time. India has sent some interlocutors in this regard. Hopefully their honest efforts are taken further.

However, I’d like Kashmir settled only from the following stand point – removing the military from the residential areas and moving them to border zones, forcing the Kashmir state government to use its own police to quell risings, bring to justice those who committed human rights violations on innocent people, bring back tourism, jobs and peace.

But Kashmiris demand a nation because they are Muslims, I am against it. Much water has flowed under the bridge. We created one Muslim nation out of the Indian subcontinent and it has become two. On top of that the Muslim nation of Pakistan has done nothing for itself other than to sacrifice all its resources and efforts on catching up with the “Hindu” India. I am against forming nations for religion in today’s world. We need to share this world with others and respect others. If every small group started demanding a nation for their quirky customs, the world will fall apart. Everyone is breathing the same air. Muslims or Afrikaners or other religious followers do not breathe a different air. We share this world.

I’d very much support Kashmiris if they protest and pelt stone for not being given enough opportunities and livelihood. Fighting for religion is a total waste of time and energy. Religion is not meant for fighting. It is meant for bringing peace and solace. I don’t want Kashmir settled because Muslims feel separate from others. Those days are over. If they still feel they need to be on their own, they can gladly migrate to many Muslim countries like Pakistan. We all need to move on. There are opportunities growing for everyone to enhance their potential and seek better life. Join the bandwagon instead of trying to fall under its wheels.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

@KP
“We share this world”

So what about heaven? That’s the problem of the hardcore fundamentalists. Sharing is not known to them. All that these monsters want is to muscle ‘their interpretation’ of religion down everyone’s throat. Such Religious foolishness will take this world nowhere.

For Kashmir I don’t understand why can’t Kashmiris join Indian military as officers. Why can’t Kashmiris sit for NDA exams in big numbers? I don’t think Kashmiris are barred from NDA exams? When I went for SSB interviews I did meet a few Kashmiris. But why only a few? Why not a lot? If you find system as faulty then join it and try to reform it. Why separation? Beats me!!

Posted by 777xxx777 | Report as abusive
 

As far as us pakistani’s are concerned we believe that India should honour the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council on Kashmir, we ask nothing more than this ! ! ! let kshmiris decide their future its as simple as that, Indian government has always denied this right of self-determination to the people of kashmir which is a major civil rights abuse.

As for the so called allegations of state spnosored militancy is concerned, it is quite amusing to hear such a thing from a state who herself is involved in funding militants in Afghanistan who are disrupting life in NWFP & Baluchistan. i never buy such a allegation as every state plays proxy wars on other states!

Its in the interest of this region that we find solution on the basis of UN resolutions and if we dont then Kashmir is a bomb in waiting to explod any moment as we are witnessing riots in Kashmir for past few months.

PEACE

Posted by casim | Report as abusive
 

777xxx777,

Our military has been used excessively in Kashmir since 2007. I do understand the reasons for its deployment during the proxy war days in the 1990s and early part of this decade. I think Indian government blew a golden opportunity to assuage feelings and try to attract local Kashmiris to change their perspectives. If you are kept under siege and curfews frequently, bad will become worse. The central government is quite inept in these matters. They are reactive rather than proactive. They wait for things to get worse before acting reluctantly on them. The reason is because those in powerful positions have finance background – Manmohan Singh and Chidambaram. They can definitely act on economic matters and India is where it is due to their expertise. But non-economic issues like security, internal friction etc are not their forte. As a result, they have simply left things to stagnate. The government led by these two has not made any moves on Maoism either. A government has to have all round experience and have the right kind of people with appropriate administrative experience to handle various things. One cannot make a guy with math background in charge of defense or a former chess player as agriculture minister. The math guy can handle education and the chess player can do sports. Wrong portfolio assignments lead to small problems getting out of control. Kashmir issue needs to be handled by the right experts who know how to go about it.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

@Singh,

I agree, nations formed on the basis of religion, historically has shown us to be an utter failure. Such institutions favor the political will of the majority at the expense of the minorities and leads to their exploitation and mass killing.

Theocratic institutions do not provide real true justice or true happiness to the humans spirit and kills creativity and joy within people.

While religion is important, I think that secularity, democracy and pluralism go hand in hand with imagination, creativity, generosity, friendliness and capturing the best of what it means to be a human being.

Islamic countries like Malaysia, Morocco, and Turkey have figured this out. They don’t choke out the life of religious minorities to impose imperial rule within. The live and let live approach creates the greatest peace and harmony and progress.

Unfortunately tight fisted Pakistani’s keep hold of the status quo, as though it is the right path forward for them and the past has shown this to be incorrect as Sufi’s, Ahmadiyas, Hindus and Christians continue to be killed and persecuted in Pakistan by Extremists, that are politically and philosophically sympathized with by the Pakistani public at large.

I talked with a Turkish muslim the other day. He said he is simply amazed at how so many different cultures and religions in India can co-exist, peacefully for the most part. He said it is mind boggling how this can be.

My simple answer was: Democracy. Although not always perfect, at least for now, from democracy, will arise the best of humanity. Everybody has a channel through which they can vent their frustrations. But still India has not utilized the full potential of its democratic institutions to fully benefit the marginalized people in India, it must and can do better. To all naysayers and detractors of Indian democracy, I say, regardless, it is irrefutably still quite amazing what India is and has achieved. I have faith that it will continue to become stronger with time, especially if Pakistani based terrorists continue to inflict warfare on India.

With regards to your last post, I agree with you, I think there should be a greater emphasis on portfolio allocation based on experience. India needs to bring up Kashmiri’s and perhaps recruit them to police Kashmir, since they understand the situation in Kashmir the best. It will go along way to diffusing the seige that Kashmiri’s live under. But this has to be matched with enhanced technological security of the LOC border.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

Myra

As the dangers faced by Pakistan from violent terrorists intensify and Pakistani military is engaged in an effort to regain control of elements once created to confront India. There is a greater need to sort out the Kashmir dispute, it has been too long that this issue has been left unsolved. Even Pakistan has no control over it now, Kashmir is a ticking time bomb. Many a groups have linkages to Kashmir and are ready to fight and die.

True indian leadership is ready for a solution, so should Pakistan be. Lets see if both nations can get over it, and turn a new page in history. If Kashmir can be sorted out it will usher a new era of friendship and cooperation between the two nations and it will be an historic and life changing event for Pakistan atleast. With defence cuts and increased social spending, end to low intensity conflict Pakistan can regain economic prosperity and focus on quality of life of its people rather than keep worrying about disputes with a larger enemy state.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

G-W: “Islamic countries like Malaysia, Morocco, and Turkey have figured this out. They don’t choke out the life of religious minorities to impose imperial rule within. The live and let live approach creates the greatest peace and harmony and progress.”

I disagree. Malaysia had its “Bhumi Putra” problem in which Malay Muslims sacked Hindu temples and rose against the economically better Chinese minority.

The problem with Islamic nations is that there is always a potential for fundamentalism to rise. This is very similar to the potential for neo-Nazism to arise in some European nations and the US. All its needs is a flame to ignite it in the form of war somewhere that involves these people or resource sharing issues or sharing a nation with others or facing better competition and skill from others. Economic progress tends to diffuse the rise of these forces. Backwardness is ideal ground for exploitation of the masses using religious sentiments. In India, we do have the people who exploit backwardness in local regions. I do not have to name them here.

These seems to be something fundamentally different about Islamic countries and relatively poor ones at that. The people in general are easy going and would love to live like others. But they are held together through fear by a few fundamentalists with power hold or forced to group by inviting retaliation from non-Muslims through attacks on them by the same people. This seems to be the norm. And religious edicts written more than a thousand years ago come in handy to sustain that backwardness.

Underlying culture also plays a part. Indonesia is the largest Muslim nation in the world. Other than the region of Aceh, they are in general very peaceful. Al Qaeda has infiltrated there as well. In the book “Among the Believers” VS Naipaul describes the fundamental nature of the people in Indonesia. Though it is an Islamic nation, underneath that veil is a system that has evolved over centuries through Hindu and Buddhist traditions. They have retained the “pesantran” system that was in vogue before they converted to Islam on a massive scale. Many miracle stories associated with Buddhist monks have been shifted to Muslim saints. As a culture they have been passive people. You must read how the Dutch mowed down people running into them in Bali.

Bangladesh is another example – people are very different in nature compared to those who make up Pakistan today. Underlying culture plays a big role in the long term peace in a country. Belligerent cultures like those in Pakistani Punjab, Pakhtoon lands and Central Asia always have had the potential to ignite. Islam is a deadly fuel that has made things worse for these people. I am not recommending reconverting them to some other religion. I am just analyzing why these people are so volatile.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

777xxx777: “Why can’t Kashmiris sit for NDA exams in big numbers? I don’t think Kashmiris are barred from NDA exams? When I went for SSB interviews I did meet a few Kashmiris. But why only a few? Why not a lot? If you find system as faulty then join it and try to reform it. Why separation? Beats me!!”

If there is one thing where Pakistan has defeated India, it is the alienation of the local Kashmiri Muslims from India. This is a war of the minds and Pakistan, by staging a proxy war using trained militants, has worked over a decade and half to make this shift in people’s minds effective. Prior to that Kashmiris did not trust the Pakistanis. In 1965, when Ayub launched Operation Gibraltor, the locals caught the “Holy warriors” and handed them off to the local police.

Today, “holy warriors” are looked at as saviors. Pakistan has done what it has learned and perfected during the Afghan proxy war – draw the bigger enemy into a known territory and make them trip and fall over and over again. All that is needed is sustained insurgency that slowly begins to bleed the enemy. The enemy in frustration takes it out on innocent people. Then it is only a matter of time. The people become helpless and begin to look at the military as an occupying force. Then Pakistan has to do nothing. It takes a generation to make the feelings permanent. In Kashmir, there is a new generation, which has only seen Indian military and paramilitary soldiers in every street corner, check points, searches, arrests, torture all through their lives. At some point, they will revolt and that is what India is experiencing now. Pakistan has to do nothing more as it has successfully managed to alienate the locals from main stream India. Many have lost their near and dear ones. India is now looked at as a colonizer and not as a rising economic powerhouse. They have no desire to jump in with Indians and progress economically. They do not want India anymore. That is the reason why they do not apply for positions in Indian services. Anyone who does will now be termed as a traitor. Alienation is complete. Now the ball is in India’s court to see how these people’s minds be reset. It cannot be done with military or other security forces. Inept governance both at the state level and center have aggravated the issue even more.

India definitely is at the receiving end in regards to Kashmir. All that Pakistan has to do is to periodically blow air into the situation to increase the flames.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

I have read the synopsis of the subject under discussion and my commenter friend’s comments. I find people making silly remarks on religion have no knowledge of it. It shows the shallowness and mean prejudicial up bringing of the person who comments.

Can any friend clarify as to why the Shiks WANTED TO SECEDE from India which after shoving a long flexible bamboo through the secession movement of the Sikhs community in India Prime Minister Indira Ghandi effectively controlled the movement. However, the vengeful Sikhs killed the innocent Prime Minister most brutally exhibiting the inherent traits of disloyalty of the Sikh’s.

However, cutting a long comment short I would state and suggest that an individual of a genocide committal country-giving sermon to others do not seem good. It raises serious question about the nation’s duplicity imbued in its character.

All once colonial now independent nations have imbued duplicate character. No matter it will take time to change. Till the character quality of these nations changes they should stop speaking lies and refrain from accusing trying to hide own faults.

For information, India is the worst violator of Human Rights. My Indian friends should know that a genocide case is pending in Indian Supreme court for last few decades. It is suggested that by speaking loudly one cannot win by hiding facts. People of the world particularly of the west cannot be hoodwinked we all keep information.

Kashmir issue and Palestinian are of the same nature. So a solution is needed. Kashmir wants to be independent so it should be. Here both Pakistan and India today tomorrow or day after has to agree.

Instead of projecting Kashmir issue for the consumption of the west, India should refer the Maoist issue as well to show how well or adversely the issue stands for the nation could be projected for the information of the west. West will then be able to calculate how many decade will India remain united and then become like divided Russia as it is now.

Before concluding I must submit that US President’s
Comment on Kashmir had been very carefully articulated and was a well balance comment which suggested an early negotiated solution.

Posted by KINGFISHER | Report as abusive
 

Here is an article on Kashmir in BBC:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-as ia-11697782

It pretty much says what I have said.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

KINGFISHER: “Can any friend clarify as to why the Shiks WANTED TO SECEDE from India which after shoving a long flexible bamboo through the secession movement of the Sikhs community in India Prime Minister Indira Ghandi effectively controlled the movement. However, the vengeful Sikhs killed the innocent Prime Minister most brutally exhibiting the inherent traits of disloyalty of the Sikh’s.”

But then you start with:

“I find people making silly remarks on religion have no knowledge of it. It shows the shallowness and mean prejudicial up bringing of the person who comments”

Is ignorance your right alone? Why can’t you follow what you are telling others?

Khalistan movement was triggered by political reasons. Indira Gandhi and her son believed in burning up a place in order to dismiss the local government, installing Governor’s rule and tried to bring in Congress led government. She did this not only in Punjab, but also in many parts of the country including Kashmir. Sometimes it went to ridiculous extent. A majority government will suddenly be dismissed by a state governor who was usually a lackey of Indira Gandhi. Times were different then. She basically shook India hard and did not realized she was setting up land mines everywhere. Khalistan movement is an offshoot of that political stunts. There are always groups in every country and state that want to capitalize on this. There are people in India even now who do not want to be Indians. Such people will always be there and a nation should never give room for them to grow. In the case of Khalistan, Indira Gandhi wanted to bring down the government led by Darbara Singh. Her son propped up a small and relatively unknown guy and allowed him to gain momentum. Beyond a certain point this man began to spin out of control on his own and became a terrible monster. He parked himself in our holiest of shrines. Sant Bhindranwale had to be contained and that was only possible when Indira Gandhi launched the army to invade the premises of the temple and kill him. She had gone way too arrogant by this time and should have quit from politics a few years earlier and retired. Power corrupts people. She was punished for her actions. And the political goons again unleashed terror on Sikhs everywhere thereby causing more alienation. Fortunately, wisdom has prevailed and the Gandhi family has had a complete reset after Rajiv Gandhi died at the hands of Tamils. These twenty years have seen a life without much of direct control from the Indira Gandhi family. It has helped India reinvent itself. Now their progeny has grown wings and is flexing them to enter the political skies. Hopefully he will do a better job than his grand mother. It is all politics and has nothing to do with religion. That is why I always claim that Pakistan’s partition and Kashmir turmoil are part of politics more than religion.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

KINGFISHER: “Kashmir issue and Palestinian are of the same nature”

Correct. They both were set off by the British as their empire came to an end. They set the fire on and it is still burning. It was the gift they gave to the people they ruled once. As far divisions between people and races, that predates even the British. Only they managed to align them and focus them against each other permanently.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Kingfisher,

As a reasonable hindu, let me tell you, the Gandhi’s were not healthy for India.

The Sikh movement was hijacked by Pakistani Stooges, in an attempt to foment separatism and splitting India. Most sikhs were caught in the middle, so Sikhs at large are not to be blamed, as the unreciprocal response in Operation blue star resulting in many Sikh deaths. The sikh community has not forgotten, but let it go, at least for now, and chosen to focus on self-development.

For that, I deeply commend and respect the Sikh community in India and worldwide, but simultaneously, I detest those that advocate separatism with India, it will not happen and cannot happen. Sikhs have the most productive diaspora and the most productive province per capita in India and in my humble opinion, generally represent among the best, what India has to offer. Having the most fertile land in India, it cannot be separated into a different country, millions would die of starvation. It is a matter of nation security for India to remain as one.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

Here is another one on Kashmir in NY Times, written by none other than Ms. Roy:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/09/opinio n/09roy.html?_r=1&hpw

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Kingfisher said:

> Kashmir issue and Palestinian are of the same nature

And Tibet? Or is China too powerful for us to dare talk about Tibet?

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive
 

@GW
You are not only a reasonable hindu but also an intelectual one with intution. Do not confuse territory with people. let the majority of sikhs have what they wish and let the kashmiris have their independence if that is what they want. It does not mean that the sikhs or kashmiris would separate from other communities of India. Try to free yourself fromthe middle ages where rulers, kings and dictators fought for the territory. Europe is a glaring example with the social and free market venture. Do not build castles over the heads of the people. democracy must follow the wishes of the people and not the other way around. Mr Obama message is the same which you put out in your vision, with the exception that in a coded message the great imposter was telling Pakistan to use violence against its own citizens and let India sort out its problems. Good luck, your vision of peace among all the people is going to benefit the lot, win win all the way.

Rex Minor

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

@rex Minor,

On that same note, do you advocate also for Balochi’s to separate from Pakistan?

Do you alse advocate Pakistan occupied Kashmiri’s separating from Pakistan?

Do you also advocate Muslims carving out their own countries in Europe and United States as well, if their populations increase?

You need to contemplate your words more throughly.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

@Rex Minor,

With your thinking, everyone and their dog will want their own country. The entire earth would be embroiled in Genocides and multi-generational wars, since were are not “confusing territory with people”. This will not work, it will lead to death, strife and human misery.

I think we can build communion over the heads of the people, if they work towards a common goal, ie manufacture, provide services, pay taxes, have mortgages and pursue the dream to lift up and lift up their nation.

We do not need more divisions between people, we need more understanding of each other’s points of view.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

Rex

“let the majority of sikhs have what they wish and let the kashmiris have their independence if that is what they want. It does not mean that the sikhs or kashmiris would separate from other communities of India. Try to free yourself fromthe middle ages where rulers, kings and dictators fought for the territory”
***That means you do not support the birth of Pakistan, right since that was meant to have a territory where all Muslims from India move. Even if it was an autonomous region, it still would have meant migration of Muslims to one area, which you think is a thing to do in the middle age. I totally agree with you on this.

Do you know there is no issue of Sikhs in India now as far demanding Khalistan is concerned? I can understand you about Kashmir, why do you think Sikhs desire independence? There is nothing like visiting a place and asking people. They will ask you to not talk about it it. Just like in Kashmir a generation of people has emerged with anti-India feelings, Blue star happened 25yrs ago and new generation do not think the way you think. Old generation of Sikhs also does not think that way. But if you think the disappearance of the last remaining separatist Sikh is a proof, then you are right we have an issue here. You will always see some radicals somewhere still having plans to have a Sikh nation. A COMMON SIKH LIVING IN PUNJAB does not think of Khalistan. Sikhs themselves know and say that they are not good at governing, they are great warriors–leaders as well as soldiers. They are great spiritual Sikhs. So this will cover both shades of Sikhism–spirituality of Guru Nanak Dev and militant Sikhism of Guru Gobind Singh. Ranjeet Singh was the sole administrator who succeeded.

Tell me how does a Sikh nation look like geographically and demographically.Please be specific and no USA and Gitmo talk.

Kashmir is definitely an issue. Do not let religion play be a dictating factor for separation. That would avoid a “Jihadi” into the equation or even a Taliban!

Posted by rehmat | Report as abusive
 

Rex

Let me add that history I mentioned was for the betterment of future, nothing else! So do not make a big deal out of it.

Posted by rehmat | Report as abusive
 

@ K P Singh and My Other Learned Commenter Friends those who commented on the article

Please go through quoted portion of your comment and may like to reply my queries to facilitate evaluate the facts on the issue and come to a consensus on the matters Hope you will cooperate:

1. ” Unfortunately tight fisted Pakistani’s keep hold of the status quo, as though it is the right path forward for them and the past has shown this to be incorrect as Sufi’s, Ahmadiyas, Hindus and Christians continue to be killed and persecuted in Pakistan by Extremists, that are politically and philosophically sympathized with by the Pakistani public at large”

* What about the Christians, Muslims and the Low cast Hindus being killed and tortured
by Hindu Politician’s sponsorship, why no mention of that?

2. “The government led by these two has not made any moves on Maoism either. A government has to have all round experience and have the right kind of people with appropriate administrative experience to handle various things”.

* Does your statement mean the Prime Minister is inapt or not competent to run the national affairs efficiently?

3. “I agree, nations formed on the basis of religion, historically has shown us to be an utter failure. Such institutions favor the political will of the majority at the expense of the minorities and leads to their exploitation and mass killing.”

* What is your opinion analytically about Indian history say of the Muslim era in India. Was that also a failure? However, even until today works done and left by the Muslims and British in India earns billions to feed the nation and as the Hindus are in majority share more on that earned money than others are.

4. “The problem with Islamic nations is that there is always a potential for fundamentalism to rise. This is very similar to the potential for neo-Nazism to arise in some European nations and the US.

*Why are the human Rights violations in India that arose the eye brows of the world community and a genocide committed sponsored by Indian political party leaders. Can Hindus not call it Nazism in practice? How do you deny the fact?

5. “Backwardness is ideal ground for exploitation of the masses using religious sentiments. In India, we do have the people who exploit backwardness in local regions.”

* Q: WHAT ABOUT BJP and its POLITICAL MOTIVE.

6. “Many miracle stories associated with Buddhist monks have been shifted to Muslim saints. As a culture they have been passive people. You must read how the Dutch mowed down people running into them in Bali”.

* Why no mention of Alexander to British mowing down India. Mentioning of the fact should not be a matter of feeling shy and small. can the fact be mentioned what happened then.?

7. “Underlying culture plays a big role in the long term peace in a country. Belligerent cultures like those in Pakistani Punjab, Pakhtoon lands and Central Asia always have had the potential to ignite. Islam is a deadly fuel that has made things worse for these people. I am not recommending reconverting them to some other religion. I am just analyzing why these people are so volatile.”

* Do you have any knowledge of Islam If you have then please reply analytically what you have found in Islam that it is a fuel to fire ? Do you also hold the Sikh in Indian Punjab to be fuel to fire for being Belligerent culture if not why not? Which are the countries in central Asia that are of Belligerent cultural and fuel to fire?

8. “India definitely is at the receiving end in regards to Kashmir. All that Pakistan has to do is to periodically blow air into the situation to increase the flames.”

* How do you claim India to be in the receiving end when you have got the cause for solution, the Kashmir people want Independence without any link with Pakistan and India even on that India started to kill the innocents protesters Is this what in your view you call receiving end, if not clarify? .

9. “Is ignorance your right alone? Why can’t you follow what you are telling others?”

* How do you justify killing of the head of the government for an act of the government that may have gone against the Sikh community? When the same issue could have been amicably settled through dialogs. Does this act of killing the Prime Minister not prove sufficiently that Sikh community is culturally belligerent , hot headed and ferocious when things go against their liking?

*If you hold as per your statement that what Sikh had done was correct then clarify if Indian government decision to kill Kashmir people under the circumstance is right or wrong. If you claim it to be right then how you can claim Sikh’s Secession movement was to be right and then how you say Kashmir people demand to secede is wrong, elucidate?

10.”let the majority of sikhs have what they wish and let the kashmiris have their independence if that is what they want. It does not mean that the sikhs or kashmiris would separate from other communities of India. Try to free yourself fromthe middle ages where rulers, kings and dictators fought for the territory”

*The Political Analysts and observers would not like more than to hear what my learned commenter friend had said. Do you agree if not why not?

Posted by KINGFISHER | Report as abusive
 

I think it’s time, Indians REALLY stop giving a darn about what Pakistan thinks. Obama (& the rest of the world) has made it absolutely clear that India is in a completely different league from Pakistan & if Pakistanis are having trouble swallowing this fact, then, well it’s their problem. I’ve checked out a few Pakistani news sites & all I see is sulking, sulking & more sulking (with refference to Obama’s India trip). One thing that Indians do need to do, is put pressure on the Indian Govt to systematically reduce military presence in Kashmir, bring speedy justice to the bereeved & work on a quick political solution in the valley. Besides that, Indians should keep doing what they are doing, get a good education, work hard & everything else will be good. If Pakistanis choose to stay in the dumpster & ascend towards irrelevancy, let them.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

@Kingfisher

At India blog you said:

“The time is fast approaching when world will see how an emerging economical power merges with dust and vanishes. This is what perhaps will culminate into, just wait and see. It is because it India is politically unstable country with states wanting to breadth air of freedom and many are subjugated for much to long under Hindu class system wants to break way.”

***I think you “just wait and see” all these comments you carefully assembled becoming irrelevant because India will “merge with dust”. No point discussing Sikhs and Kashmir when India will become dust or perhaps you yourself do not believe this. Just have patience.

Posted by rehmat | Report as abusive
 

@GW,Rehmat
Kingfisher has the ability to go deep into your commentry and have raised very suitable interrogative questions and this dialogue can continue without my participation. I support his comments; I am baffled with some of the comments coming from Rehmat and GW. Why do you guys always try to confuse the issue. Am I a Kashmiri or a sikh or an Indian? Certainly not.
I am a democrat and strongly believe in socialist free market system. I also believe in the direct participation of citizens in the democratic system as practiced in Switerland.
I am definitely against a system of Govt. which uses military suoppression and State terror against its own citizens. My statements on kashmir issue and the sikhs issue simply reflects this principle.
Most normal people are satisfied if they have self rule and are autonomous within their own region, province or what have you. Democracy means freedom of expression and self rule, not the suppression of the expression by the military. Now tell me in all honesty, are you still of the opinion that the Kashmiris should continue to struggle for freedom in the next generation?
Rehmat, Do’nt me the crap, that siks are not good at governing, they are great warriors, leaders as well as soldiers. These are the words of the colonialists about the Indians, africans and the afro americans. India definitely needs to reform the education system,as well as to get rid of the inhuman caste system if it wants to sit in the UN Security Council and make independent decisions, without kowtowing the policies of the inmerialist USA!

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

To be Confident is good, to be humble is recommended but over confident is bad and complacency is dangerous in maters of Political decision and defense Strategy.

In the fast changing world anything can happen any moment, nothing is permanent so is Kashmir and its future. The visit of a powerful country’s President to the country is definitely a matter of significance but not the only thing to be proud off and show off. That depicts the immaturity of the nation, which should not be in the case of any Indian individual citizen.

Human Rights violation by any nation great or small speaks volume of irrelevancy of good human kind of that nation. So too committal of crime against humanity sponsored by Political Leaders of a country smears the edifice of self-proclaimed democracy and Leader of mankind. Once damaged can never be regained even by use of nuclear arsenals.

To become super power is tough and to keep it intact is still tougher. Flexing muscle can make enemies but kindness and humbleness gather friends. It is time India understands these facts. The earlier is the better.

Posted by KINGFISHER | Report as abusive
 

@Rehmat

Sikhs are capable of governing as well as anyone else. I don’t think that’s the reason why sikhs (generally) don’t want a ‘Khalistan’. As a sikh, I can tell you that a vast majority of sikhs are not interested in Khalistan because they believe in pluralism & tolerance and they feel that they are much better off being a part of the fabric of a diverse Indian society than a nation, based & built on religion.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

Mortal:
“If Pakistanis choose to stay in the dumpster & ascend towards irrelevancy, let them.”

-Here is a slap on your face

Pakistan, the state that refuses to fail
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/7dab7e96-dc8b- 11df-a0b9-00144feabdc0.html#axzz14unCeQG 7

Still do you think you guys can further divide and break up Pakistan? There is nothing you do that we can’t do better.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

@UmairPak,

It is time you quit chasing your forefather’s BS dreams and BS history that they have made. You have the internet, you have all of the knowledge now. Be your own man and develop a new vision for Pakistan. It is time for you to grow up.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

@Myra
I read your articles with interest and always hope that one day there would be less about the monsters that the anglo saxon administrations have put in circulation over the past ten or more years and more about the people, the real people of the regions. it would be great if the independent journalists were to feel, speak and understand the languages of these people.

. millions of Indians who are not able to feed themselves, or have a free access to education or even have the freedom to express their aspirations in the society. Millions have even been classified as low caste humans by birth.

. millions of Pakistan citizens who are internaly displaced by the military violence or as a result of the so called natural disasters caused by floods and earthquakes as well as the communal violence. They have lost their identity since they go to religious schools, resist against Pakistan military intrusion in their autonomous region and have even taken arms against the USA and Nato forces. They have been labelled radicals, Islamists , talibans and friends of AlQuaeda, whatever that means. It is even alleged that among them are the future terrorist who are going to undertake suicide missions agaist India and western countries.

How on earth the world is going to confront or live with the bogeys of the west, the so called monsters? During the ww1 and ww2 the citizens were told not to speak loudly so that the 5th columnists around could misuse the info.

Rex Minor

PS what I find amusing is that India was a great friend of Communist Soviet Union, the great satan of the 20th century, and now is fast becoming the friend of the 21st century Great Satan; the fatwa was recently announced by an Iranian muslim priest!!

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

@Mortal,

I agree with you, the way Sikhs area part of the fabric of the colour of India, the same way are the hindus, muslism, christians, jews, jain and many others. All peoples make India complete. Separating anyone of them destroys the Indian family.

India is not defined by any one language, culture or people, India is the culture of many, a culture of inclusivity, secularity, plurality, democracy, restraint and sublime overall character refined by the last thousands of years. Indians have the patience, the intelligence and spirit to weather and move beyond and that they are, they are shooting for the stars and the moon, while Pakistani’s are still shooting themselves in the foot.

@Kingfisher, you want to speak of human rights violations and such,

Please feel free to discuss blasphemy laws of Pakistan, killing of Sufi’s and Ahmadiyas, Bangladesh Genocide by Pakistani Army and dozens more. India has its share of problems, that is undeniable and they wont’ be fixed overnight, but the tools and means are there to facilitate resolution of many issues. The issue is lack of political and moral will by the leaders, not the people of India.

A country as large and diverse as India with such a huge population, it is conceivable that it will never ever have any people that are happy with everything. There will always somebody that has not been addressed or listened to….that is a consequence of so little land and so many people and so little resources to share.

Since you are a detractor and naysayer, negative people like you should not be under any delusions, what India has done and created since partition is truly awesome, incredible and beautiful. India stands on many levels as a guide to what is achievable with so many differences in opinion, language, religion and cultures.

It really makes me laugh when people with sour grapes on their plate keep harping about India coming apart and break up…these are all dreams of madmen, who belong in sanitariums. My family relative just came back from india, and traveled all over there, he said, India has come a long long way and its amazing with the breakneck speed with which the new generation of youth from all backgrounds and religions are becoming like one, uniform, cohesive culture. Year after year, it is changing so fast, the ideas, energy and entrepreneurialism disseminates so quickly!

I think the emerging youth, with their new modern outlook, new ideas, courage and ability to immerse with one another will be the backbone of India becoming a superpower. All types of Indians are contributors to this, whether muslim, hindu, sikh, christian or others.

@UmairPk,

I feel sorry for you, you really don’t have any positive male role models in Pakistan, not one, they are all either militants, terrorists, liars or military mafia junta. Everybody there is dysfunctional, with the exception of a few “fifth” column writers that keep getting persecuted.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

G-W:
“I feel sorry for you, you really don’t have any positive male role models in Pakistan, not one, they are all either militants, terrorists, liars or military mafia junta. Everybody there is dysfunctional, with the exception of a few “fifth” column writers that keep getting persecuted.”

-My friend I rather feel sorry for you, it has been years I am interacting with you guys and you are constantly displaying your hatred for Pakistan. I would suggest why dont you just shut up and mind your business? Just as not all Indians are stupid and full of hatred as you, similarly not everyone in Pakistan is insane.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

@Rex

“I am baffled with some of the comments coming from Rehmat and GW. Why do you guys always try to confuse the issue. Am I a Kashmiri or a sikh or an Indian? Certainly not.”
***Instead of getting baffled if you address the needful, that would be a great use of your time.

“Now tell me in all honesty, are you still of the opinion that the Kashmiris should continue to struggle for freedom in the next generation?”
***In all honesty, I tell you that are screwed up big time!!! why do you use “still” for me? Do you know this conveys the sense that I endorse Kashmiris struggling forever for their cause. I do not do that. Not only me, many Indians on this blog do not want kashmiris struggle and they want IA back in barracks and police out in Khakis.

“Rehmat, Do’nt me the crap, that siks are not good at governing, they are great warriors, leaders as well as soldiers.”
***OK, I won;t give you crap, at least not over this. I don’t think you are worth my time with your knowledge of history of the area. Despite my request you could not stop diluting your post with USA masala.

Tell me do you really think Sikhs want Khalistan? You got to live with normal Sikh population not asylum seekers. Khalistan is a non-issue.

+++++++++++++++++++

@Mortal
“Sikhs are capable of governing as well as anyone else. I don’t think that’s the reason why sikhs (generally) don’t want a ‘Khalistan’. As a sikh, I can tell you that a vast majority of sikhs are not interested in Khalistan because they believe in pluralism & tolerance and they feel that they are much better off being a part of the fabric of a diverse Indian society than a nation, based & built on religion.”
***I AGREE with you what I said is not the reason for why Khalistan did not happen. And I did not mean that. Sikhs did not want Khalistan so did not happen–agreed.

I said that in the same vein what is said for Kashmir that governing an independent Kashmir will be a tough job–the post-independent land scenario. This is where we differ.

Sikhs are great soldiers and officers. I admire them more because they have both sides–the tolerant and kind. Now why I said that Sikhs are not good at governing? My view is derived from Indian politics from whatever I know. I may be wrong. Perhaps I am wrong if I look at how successful Sikhs are in Canada and USA politics.

Posted by rehmat | Report as abusive
 

Rex

“India definitely needs to reform the education system,as well as to get rid of the inhuman caste system if it wants to sit in the UN Security Council and make independent decisions, without kowtowing the policies of the inmerialist USA!”
***Educations sytem has nothing to do with UNSC. are you crazy? focus yourself.

I have not seen a hypocrite like you, and so confident at that.

here is why:

1. Agreed with Caste system in India. Again you do not know the trend–is it getting better or worse. I did not see such passionate opposition of Bangladesh genocide despite few posters begging you to have your head in place. You chose not to judge the genocide of “300,000″ (your number not mine).

2. Why are you such a cheerleader of China whose only aim is to care for the Han majority, which is 90%. Rest 10% = nearly 140million is meaningless to them. This is reflected at common man level.

Why don’t I see you oppose China and plead to rip permanent UNSC seat for oppression of Uighur Muslims, Budhists, elimination of intellectuals in masses by Mao and continuing that trend till now and having slaves in the names of workers for cheap prices they sell the products at. Have you forgotten those Uighur Muslims in China. Could you please explain here without bringing GOD’s words to save you why you are such a big fan of non-democratic and oppressive regime and hate at least trying to be democratic India?

Posted by rehmat | Report as abusive
 

@Umair

I’ve seen some mature & well intentioned comments from you, as of late, so let’s not get back to the juvenile rhetoric. My harsh critisizm was meant for those Pakistanis, who refuse to give up their hate & bigotry and instead continue on a path of jelousy & finger-pointing, devoid of any sort of introspection. For those Pakistanis, who are sincerely working towards peace & towards reforming their country, I have nothing but repect & admiration. You have to choose, which of the above catagories you belong.

@Rehmat: Your comments are well taken.

@Rex Minor

Nov 8, 2010, 4:49 EST
“I have said my piece on this blog and now I leave it people like GW to carry on. My time is up and perhaps I shall return with my comments after 2012″

Rex Minor Posted by pakistan

Is it 2012 already?

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

The author has used several hundred words and it seems she is discovering something new! We Indians have been saying the same to her for 2 years now ( at least 2 years as far as I know, don’t know how long it has existed).

This is funny.

The gist of her discovery is Pakistan army/ISI would have continued with terrorist attacks inside India, while India holding “peace talks” with pak. What is new here?!

Amazing.
-Raj

Posted by Seekeroftruth | Report as abusive
 

@Umair,

I do not hate Pakistani’s including you. Please don’t post false perceptions here. Analyzing Pakistani behavior should not equate Indians to becoming haters.

Let me be analytical a little further, yet simple, there are many things abscent to facilitate the function of a normal psyche in Pakistan. That is a fact that most of the world will agree upon. Sorry if that makes you angry. You defiance speaks volumes of your damaged psyche. Peace is difficult with those who continue to have a clenched fist.

We will keep trying.

As I said, Umair, try to rise above and be your own man. Leave behind the politics of the past and try to embrace a new vision. Can you do that? Or are you limited to madrasa and army propaganda? I dare you to be different, if you have the heart and courage, otherwise you are like the rest and nothing new to offer.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive
 

@”there are many things abscent to facilitate the function of a normal psyche in Pakistan” Posted by G-W

Mushy has been exposing the phsyche of Pakistanis, as of late. An excerpt:

“Musharraf acknowledged that Lashkar-e-Taiba and like-minded groups such as Jaish-e-Mohammad were “involved in terrorism in Pakistan” but said they have been “very popular” for fighting Indian rule in divided Kashmir.

“Since they were going to Kashmir and fighting the Indian army, it went along with the psyche of the people of Pakistan — with everyone,” Musharraf said.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

@Umair

Some hard-hitting introspection from a gutsy Pakistani journalist:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp  ?page=2010\11\11\story_11-11-2010_pg3_4

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

GW:”I do not hate Pakistani’s including you. Please don’t post false perceptions here. Analyzing Pakistani behavior should not equate Indians to becoming haters.”

-You say so, and I have experienced that during my recent month lonh holiday in UAE. I came across many Indians and even made a couple of new friends there. I have had completely stranger Indians approach me on the way to airport and at the train station etc and open a conversation knowing I am from Pakistan. Mostly the conversation would be about what is going on inside Pakistan. Particularly I found Indian Muslims there being more concerned/interested to talk.
Again my question to you is why do you express your hatred towards Pakistan repeatedly?

Ok lets take a look at what you stated above:
“I feel sorry for you, you really don’t have any positive male role models in Pakistan, not one, they are all either militants, terrorists, liars or military mafia junta.”

-Now I would ignore the rest, but highlight the positive male role models in Pakistan. First of all it could be Imran Khan, a sportsman who won the cricket world cup and went on to do charity work and build a world class cancer hospital in Lahore. Then there is Abdul Sattar Edhi, who is unaware about his social work. Yet there is Dr. A.Q Khan, call him anything but he is a national hero, reminding us that if a person’s will is strong anything can be achieved. I also admire the current COAS Gen. Kayani, he is thought to be an analytical thinker and sound leader. Many other figures from the past that we can be proud of. And lastly, I can tell you if peace can be achieved between us, since afterall both people are not very different from each other there is a lot to gain. Resolution of Kashmir dispute will be a start and eventually we can bury a bitter past and start a new chapter. But the key is Kashmir, until there is genuine peace and Pakistan is strengthened, India cannot reach its full potential too. Let me put it in another way, as long as India and Pakistan remain locked in a virtual state of war, there are more opportunities to be lost and nothing to gain. The start can be made on small disputes and eventually Kashmir has to taken out of the way to lay the foundation of peace.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Mortal:

Thanks for sharing the DailyTimes article and nice to read that. I reckon maybe the civil society and young generation of Pakistan if provided the right leadership can put the country back on the right track. I agree there are faults among us, no one is perfect. But everytime I read with interest whenever anyone states that Pakistan should be split or broken into smaller states. And interestingly these suggestions are made by Indians. No wonder Pakistan Military has designated officially that India is enemy no.1. Mostly they analyze the threat posed by millitants and hypothetical threat posed by India. And act accordingly, save the costly nuclear and conventional arms race, Pakistan can save money and fix the education system, improve economy and create jobs, put people to work instead of going towards extremism. Unfortunately the world we live in is not a wonderland, real problems need real solutions, rational thinking and right decisions.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

@Umair
“But the key is Kashmir, until there is genuine peace and Pakistan is strengthened, India cannot reach its full potential too. Let me put it in another way, as long as India and Pakistan remain locked in a virtual state of war, there are more opportunities to be lost and nothing to gain. The start can be made on small disputes and eventually Kashmir has to taken out of the way to lay the foundation of peace.”

See I knew when Umair comes out of his emotional fits then he is one very sensible and honest Pakistani. I like reading your honest posts and I would not mind your emotional comments to people suggesting splitting Pakistan. I would myself react in same way as you did if someone suggested to split India.
We must all appreciate Umair’s honest thoughts.

Yes I agree with the fact that India and Pakistan must start with small issues first and then slowly build trust and finally tackle Kashmir. But would you agree that for building trust Pakistan first needs to stop Let, JM, etc from instigating violence inside India? And then for starters I guess we can take up water sharing issues first. What say?

“And interestingly these suggestions are made by Indians. No wonder Pakistan Military has designated officially that India is enemy no.1.”

Yes such suggestions by Indians add fuel to fire in Pakistan for representing India as enemy no 1.

“I reckon maybe the civil society and young generation of Pakistan if provided the right leadership can put the country back on the right track.”

Yes True. A leadership that lends a hand of friendship towards India and not hatred. May be that lady we talked sometime back, Fozia Khan I guess her name was, some more like her are needed in Pakistan.

Posted by 777xxx777 | Report as abusive
 

Umair said:

> But everytime I read with interest whenever anyone states that Pakistan should be split or broken into smaller states. And interestingly these suggestions are made by Indians.

When Indians suggest this, it is not out of hatred. It is to reduce the threat from a hostile neighbour. If Pakistan is friendly, why would any Indian want it to be split? These statements must be viewed in context and not taken too seriously.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive
 

Rehmat said to Rex:

> Why don’t I see you oppose China and plead to rip permanent UNSC seat for oppression of Uighur Muslims, Budhists [...]

Better restrict that question to Uighur Muslims alone. It’s a bit too much to ask Rex to express sympathy for Buddhists. They are “non-believers”, after all.

I am a bit tired of his moralistic posturing amidst all the double-standards in his posts.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive
 

@Rehmat

The subject article is dealing with Kashmir, which according to the India Govt. is the integral part of he Indian territory.
For you to invite my attention to a debate on China’s domestic policies is out of place.

KASHMIR IS INDIA’S ACHILLES’ HEEL, and Mr Obama was very clear, sort out the problem and hands off Pakistan, India’s own democratic existence is in question? A seat on security council carries more responsibilities. Has the Indian PM understood this message, perhaps not, if his education level is of your calibre?

Many millions of Indians do not even realize that theirs is a military State, simply because of massive illetracy and those who are educated completed their studies in colonial structured education system. On top of that you guys have the audacity to accuse the chinese for having an undemocratic Govt. You are the copy cats of the brits and the yanks(because of the colonial education system), who are torturing people within their own country and yet do not hesitate to raise the question of human rights in China and elsewhere, a great spin,nothing more than the machiavellian politics.
I have mentioned previously, both India and Pakistan have so far failed to introduce an emancipatory education system, dismantling the colonial structures and ideoligies. Yours is not the humanistic society, and yet you come up with all the irrelevant reasons and excuses around most topics.

What spirit is this that makes a foreigner selflessly adopt the cause of the (chinese) peoples’ liberation as his own? Mao’s famous saying! I have been born with this spirit and have always felt the sufferings of the victims regardless of their religions and nationalities. I carry no hate for other humans but simply feel pity for the aggressors, for they do not know what consequeces are awaiting them!!

Mr kingfisher has repeated my comments in his Nov 10 post, paragraph 10. And your response, Khalistan is no longer an issue and that you and others on this blog agree for the Indian army back in barracks and police out in khakis. You also state that education has nothing to do with the Security Council. Perhaps you would also state that education has nothing to do with your commentry. well, I have got news for you, education has plenty to do how Indians behave within and outside their copuntry. You are through and through indoctrinated over several generations by the colonialists, your great Prime Minister and many members of his govt. You question my knowledge of history, without knowing my background and education level. And yet you are not able to understand my stance on democracy for the people and not the territorial interests.

Rex Minor

PS The 300,000 number against Yahya Khan so called genocide are not my numbers but those listed by Piero Scarufi. I have not yet been to sight the Pakistan Govt. paper you referred to?

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

Umair,

How things change! :) I agree in general in with your comments, specially about sorting out, what I call the less thorny issues first. Step by step it would become easier to reach a broad understanding on the other more complicated issue of Kashmir.

In fact I do not understand why Qureshi kept insisting on discussing everything. It is impossible to get anywhere with that kind of public posturing. If I remember right, he made it abundantly clear after the last round of talks, which became a theatre spectacle, that he would not go to Delhi unless India was going to be serious about discussing all issues. Hardly the right note to start a new round when one has just ended in a fiasco.

I think Kashmir must be discussed, whether it be dispute or issue is just semantics. But to start with the most vexing problem and expecting results is ensuring the talks have no chance.

I think you are wrong in your assessment of Indian hatred to Pakistan, official and in the general public, but I don’t think I can convince you of that. Lets just disagree on that.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive
 

Ganesh:
“When Indians suggest this, it is not out of hatred. It is to reduce the threat from a hostile neighbour. If Pakistan is friendly, why would any Indian want it to be split? These statements must be viewed in context and not taken too seriously.”

-Ganesh, are you really serious, if yes than I would take that as a compliment. Pakistan posing a threat to a country 7 times its size. That does not seem real, and in addition to that you must keep in view that Pakistan is over sensitive when it comes to the threat posed by India. We were split in 1971, we will ensure at all cost it does not occur again. Such statements do little to create trust and add to mistrust. By the same token If India is friendly towards Pakistan, why would there be hostility on our side? And I think somewhere in between people on both sides think of each other differently, each side percieve other as unfriendly whereas the reality might not be same.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Dara:”In fact I do not understand why Qureshi kept insisting on discussing everything. It is impossible to get anywhere with that kind of public posturing. If I remember right, he made it abundantly clear after the last round of talks, which became a theatre spectacle, that he would not go to Delhi unless India was going to be serious about discussing all issues. Hardly the right note to start a new round when one has just ended in a fiasco. ”

-I agree here, on both sides out of the box thinking is needed, bold decisions need to be taken. Qureshi’s action might be due to weak position of Government of Pakistan where it did not want to further weaken its domestic political standing by suffering a public backlash on Kashmir issue. On the Indian side as well due to domestic political compulsions many times the right decisions are not made on Kashmir.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

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