After Holbrooke, chances of political settlement in Afghanistan fall

December 15, 2010

holbrookeReading through some of the many thousands of words written about Richard Holbrooke,  for me two stories stood out in their ability to capture what will be lost with his death:

The first was in Rajiv Chandrasekaran’s obituary in the Washington Post:

“While beleaguered members of Mr. Holbrooke’s traveling party sought sleep on transcontinental flights, he usually would stay up late reading. On one trip to Pakistan, he padded to the forward of the cabin in his stocking feet to point out to a reporter a passage in Margaret Bourke-White’s memoirs of the time of India-Pakistan partition and independence. Bourke-White quoted Pakistani leader Muhammad Ali Jinnah telling her that Pakistan would have no problems with the Americans, because ‘they will always need us more than we need them.’ Mr. Holbrooke laughed, saying, ‘Nothing ever changes.’”

The second was in this 2009 profile by George Packer in The New Yorker.

Talking about Washington’s approach to Pakistan, Holbrooke said, “The relationship with Pakistan is so fraught with a history of disappointment on both sides… We can’t align our interests exactly, because they live in a different space, and their history is defined by their relationship with India. . . . The one thing I believe we can do with Pakistan is to try to reach a strategically symmetrical view on the danger posed by Al Qaeda and its allies. That’s the proximate strategic goal.” 

Put together, those comments cover a huge sweep of history and geography which explain why the war in Afghanistan is proving to be so intractable. While the military, and much of the media, focus on Afghanistan – since that is where western troops are deployed - Pakistan is fighting its own battle with India born out of the bloody partition of the subcontinent in 1947.  

Holbrooke was one of the few U.S. officials to have the intellectual range to fully grasp how far the problems of the Afghan war stretched back into history and out into the wider region, from Kabul to Kashmir, from Islamabad to Delhi, from 2010 to 1947. And though he was not allowed to include Kashmir in his mandate because of Indian objections, he nonetheless travelled frequently to India to seek ways of easing tensions with Pakistan. Without such an easing in tensions, Pakistan was never going to turn fully against the Afghan Taliban, believing it might need them to counter Indian influence in Afghanistan.

It is not at all clear whether the United States can find someone to replace him with the kind of intellectual range, experience and determination to untangle that knot.  According to Julian Borger at The Guardian there is already some talk that the task could instead be handed over to a new U.N. peace envoy, whose  job it would be to sound out the Taliban and Afghanistan’s neighbours on a political settlement. (At first glance, that would seem to be a non-starter if you wanted to keep India in the loop. Though India tolerates behind-the-scenes diplomacy by the United States and Britain in its relations with Pakistan, it would be expected to reject any U.N. interference which threatened to internationalise the Kashmir dispute.)

As Holbrooke’s comments on finding “a strategically symmetric view” with Pakistan on al Qaeda suggested, he also appeared to be focusing on the art of the possible.  This was neither the ”grand bargain” floated during President Barack Obama’s election campaign of seeking peace in Afghanistan by resolving the Kashmir dispute; not the other extreme of ramping up military operations into Pakistan itself. He may even have been making progress — Pakistan has been signalling of late a willingness to push for a settlement in Afghanistan which would force al Qaeda out of the region

For the moment, the question of who replaces him may be academic.  Despite a rising number of people calling for a political settlement of the Afghan war (likely to require multi-layered talks, from negotiations with Afghan insurgents to broader regional dialogue) for the time being the focus of U.S. strategy is still very much on the military campaign in Afghanistan.  Holbrooke had been somewhat sidelined in recent months, in part because of that military focus. But as and when efforts to reach a political settlement began to take shape, he would have come into his own.  No one is talking of utopian peace deals here, but of least bad options.  Holbrooke’s death probably makes the chances of eventually reaching that political settlement less likely. 

 

 

       

 

 

 

Comments

Matrixx: “So what it means is that it normal and systematic all over India.”

Not only India, all across many third and second world countries. Read my earlier posting. It is not desirable. But we do not live in an ideal world.

“Now India being proud democracy, the people love to be tortured otherwise such practices would not persist.”

You are using your law 101 logic. Torture is prevalent. This does not mean you can draw a corollary to people loving to be tortured. And it has nothing to do with democracy.

Understand why torture is being used, though it is not justified – the ratio of police to public is very small. Police get burdened with too many cases. High profile crimes demand attention from higher ups and media. The only path the police see is to get quick response from the alleged victims. Torture is used not only from getting a quick response through fear inducement, but also prevent real culprits from thinking twice about committing the crime again. There is not much money and space available to house all criminals comfortably like they do in developed countries, where they spend close to 30000 dollars a year to keep a criminal behind bars. Here cases rot and delays are normal. Police job is tension filled and frustration induced stress level is very high. Cops and interrogators end up taking it own on whoever comes under their control. This is wrong. But it happens all over the world. I don’t know if you have heard of Rodney King case in Los Angeles. Some criminals taunt the security personnel and that makes things worse.

In the US the general motto is you never mess with the cops. They will get at you if you did. Behind the scenes they can do a lot of damage to an individual if he messed with cops. When that is the case, imagine third world countries.

In Kashmir, the tension level is high. Not all security personnel are trained well to handle mob and its frenzy. Many get posted in stressful areas as a part of settling scores by peers and superiors. They go in there under duress and frustration. And they end up venting it out on the stone pelting public which appears defiant and belligerent. All this is not justified. But that is the way things are. No one from India will ever deny this or defend it.

“The real question is why the population has not rebelled in a massive insurgency?”

Violence cannot settle everything. This is something you Pakistanis have to learn. Insurgencies will not bring any solution. What is needed is sustained growth towards a healthy society. Things will take care of themselves. For a country like India, this kind of growth will take a few decades. Things have improved considerably compared to before.

“My thinking is that most people don’t get three square meals and don’t have that youthful energy to react. The state does not allow guns for personal protection. If there is strong economic growth, people are not going to take it any more and the state would shrink to Dilli as it has happened in past.”

Guns make things worse. People should never be encouraged to take law on to their own hands, especially against the government. Everything has to be done through a process of democratic exercise, judicial process improvement, media exposure etc. Things cannot change overnight. A nation has to grow and mature and that takes time. A huge country like India will need a lot of time for uniform development.

“Pakistan is down the curve by ten or fifteen years.”

Pakistan will self destruct. If its economy does not improve and if it gets tangled into more geo-political conflicts, it will reach a point of no return. I think you guys should focus on your nation more and not try to find faults with India all the time. India has its drawbacks, but no one will deny them or defend them. We know where we stand and we know there is a long way to go. We are not going to give up.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

KPS
Dear sir, I agree with your arguments in defense of state torture and I applaud your effort. You would have found gainful employment under Hitler or Stalin.

My analysis is based on sociological historic trends and consequent possible outcomes. I can also give you reinforcing actions to protect the regime. Raise food prices, physical separation of well to do from the masses. Public torture of militants. Put fear of Ram in their heart. Merit and money is the right slogan, of course never mention equality and justice.

Am I helpful or what?

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive
 

KPSingh:”Pakistan will self destruct. If its economy does not improve and if it gets tangled into more geo-political conflicts, it will reach a point of no return. I think you guys should focus on your nation more and not try to find faults with India all the time. India has its drawbacks, but no one will deny them or defend them. We know where we stand and we know there is a long way to go. We are not going to give up.”

-Pakistan is hear to remain, the geopolitics of the region means Pakistan has to play an even bigger role regionally from the Afghan war, to relations with super powers. The Chinese leader is in Pakistan signing $20 billion deals from business to finance to nuclear reactors. We are doing pretty good so far. And strongly condemn the Indian state terrorism in Kashmir.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

*Pakistan is here to remain.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/18/world/ asia/18pstan.html?_r=1&hp

Pakistani Role Is Suspected in Revealing U.S. Spy’s Name

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Matrixx: “I agree with your arguments in defense of state torture and I applaud your effort. You would have found gainful employment under Hitler or Stalin.”

I can see clearly that you approach an argument with an already preconceived vision. Everything presented is seen from the perspective which makes a skewed logic from your stand point. I am not justifying torture. I am saying that it is present in India. I am also saying it is not only present in India, it is everywhere. So I see nothing standing out in the case of India and am wondering why crooks are calling India crooks. This is like prostitution. Just doing an essay on prostitution in India does not make it a bad country. There are brothels in Pakistan, Bangladesh and everywhere. It is not desirable in this world. But unfortunately it cannot be eradicated overnight. Do you see my point? You are pot and I am kettle. We both are black. Hitler set up concentration camps. You need to be clear and not get confused between concentration camp and a police torture. The two have no relevance.

“My analysis is based on sociological historic trends and consequent possible outcomes.”

Can you provide some data? A good statistically significant and scientific data? And data that shows India being the only bad country in the world in regards to torture, and what not. I’d like to see your analysis on historic trends, and also your thesis on possible outcomes. We are eagerly waiting.

“I can also give you reinforcing actions to protect the regime. Raise food prices, physical separation of well to do from the masses. Public torture of militants.”

Looks like you guys did all this very successfully in East Pakistan. And they love you to death for that.

“Put fear of Ram in their heart.”

I don’t care. I’d let the Hindus protest about the use of Ram in a derisive manner.

“Merit and money is the right slogan, of course never mention equality and justice.”

I am sure in your land of milk and honey, headed by Mr 10%, run by a rogue cartel with weapons, merit, money, equality, justice etc are being handed out regularly. We see that on the news everyday. We see people blowing themselves up and others with them. There is no fear of Allah in dream land Pakistan. That’s for sure.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

KPS
Like I said in an earlier post, I’m not your teacher and I don’t want to be one.
Again, at least in law, it no defense that others are doing it. Don’t you want to maintain your Gandhian high moral ground?
When I write about Pakistani society, I would not give them any slack what so ever. I call for revolution and bloody house cleaning, no exceptions, no time for song and dance.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive
 

@”When I write about Pakistani society, I would not give them any slack what so ever. I call for revolution and bloody house cleaning, no exceptions” Posted by Matrixx

I haven’t see any of that from you. At least on this blog, all you have done, is point fingers at India or mock the hindu religion. How would you like, if others start mocking prophet Mohammad or make refferences to pigs while talking about Pakistanis?

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

correction: I haven’t seen…..

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

Matrixx:”Like I said in an earlier post, I’m not your teacher and I don’t want to be one.”

No one asked you to be a teacher. You were the one who talked like an expert telling me that I need a course in law 101. This is coming from a guy from a country that sees no law and order. Part of the country has no government writ runs and tribals run their own ancient rules. People carry guns to protect themselves. Military is running terrorist camps. And we get lectured on law and order. Surely ours is not a golden country. But we will take that comment from anyone from a real golden country where rights, freedom, rule of the law prevail. Your country does not figure in that list. I’d like you to remember that before you guys start taking pot shots at our country.

“Again, at least in law, it no defense that others are doing it.”

Whose law? Can you be more specific? Is it Pakistani law? Indian law? Which law book are you citing from? Lawyers always provide very specific references to make their case points. Every time issues are pointed out at Pakistan, the first line of defense is exactly the same that you are preaching against – Americans started proxy war. Therefore Pakistan is justified in doing it. Indians exploded the nukes. Therefore Pakistan is justified in it. India cut Bangladesh off. Therefore Pakistan is justified in supporting Kashmir or Khalistan separation. So when it comes to you, there seem to be separate set of rules. I think you guys should introspect on it.

Your country has blood on its hands – that of millions of Bengalis. No matter how much you try to wipe it off, it will never be erased. And it is surprising to me that you guys are championing human rights for Kashmiris. We know it is not any feeling for Kashmiris. It is venom and hatred against India that makes your “sympathy” come out.

“Don’t you want to maintain your Gandhian high moral ground?”

Yes. We produced a Gandhi. You produced a Jinnah. We chose the path of peace and construction. You guys chose the path of conflicts and destruction. Therein lies the difference.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

@”The Chinese leader is in Pakistan signing $20 billion deals from business to finance to nuclear reactors. We are doing pretty good so far.” Posted by Umairpk

If China can help Pakistan’s economy get back on track, that would be great. It would mean development & education and thus less radicalization, extremism & terrorism. It would be a win win for the region. In case you missed it, the Chinese PM was in India, earlier as well & there too he made a lot of deals & concilliatory statements. This is the age of global cooperation & not confrontation & the Chinese know that too well. They are making it quite clear that their relationship with Pakistan will not be at the expense of their relationship with India. An excerpt from Dawn:

“Although the deals are vitally important to the moribund Pakistani economy, they pale into comparison with Wen’s agreement in Pakistan’s arch rival India on Thursday where the two countries agreed to double bilateral trade to 100 billion dollars”

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

KPS
When I was talking about teaching, I was talking about sociology and in answer go go into a tirade about Pakistan.

When I talk about law, it is English Common Law, not Law of Mannu. In your answer you go into another tirade against Pakistan.

I would not have referenced Gandhi unless I had some respect for him. You bring up Jinnah. Jinnah was a lawyer leader who successfully pleaded the case for new country. He spent many year with and knew well INC and what is coming down the pipe. Minorities treatment is living proof of INC politics.

You want to talk about Bengla, why don’t you talk about Punjab? Are you a Sikh?

Why do you have hard time stay on topic?

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive
 

Matrixx: “When I was talking about teaching, I was talking about sociology and in answer go go into a tirade about Pakistan.”

Oh now you have branched into sociology! After dodging around law for sometime until I provided the link where the US was going to prosecute Assange, now you have shifted into sociology. Soon it will be psychology, then entomology, paleontology and so on. I have no interest.

“When I talk about law, it is English Common Law, not Law of Mannu. In your answer you go into another tirade against Pakistan.”

English common law works in UK. If you claim you are from UK, then Rex claims he is from Germany, but both talk like tribals inside Pakistan’s lawless lands. Law of Mannu – who was Mannu? No one follows such laws in India.

“I would not have referenced Gandhi unless I had some respect for him. You bring up Jinnah. Jinnah was a lawyer leader who successfully pleaded the case for new country. He spent many year with and knew well INC and what is coming down the pipe. Minorities treatment is living proof of INC politics.”

Kindly do not taint Gandhi’s name by mentioning him. Jinnah successfully pleaded a case for himself. He could care less for Muslims or anyone else. He was a power maniac and would do anything to be in power. INC did not deal with religion. It dealt with independence from the British. Only myopic minds will view it from a religious angle. If you saw everything from a Muslim versus non-Muslim view point, the whole world is your enemy.

“You want to talk about Bengla, why don’t you talk about Punjab? Are you a Sikh?”

What is there to talk about Punjab? Didn’t you guys cut that in half and drive our ancestors out of there?

“Why do you have hard time stay on topic?”

Because you keep side tracking it.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk: “Pakistani Role Is Suspected in Revealing U.S. Spy’s Name”

That is not good for Pakistan. The US knows where Pakistan has buried the skeletons as well. And it will expose Pakistan more. This is a bad move from a strategic stand point. Making an enemy out of the US is the worst thing. Every country that was an enemy of the US has suffered. The USSR simply disappeared. Your country could not even survive as their friends. Now you are becoming their enemy. Bad move. Just bad move.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk: “Pakistan is here to remain.”

In world history. We will be telling our grand kids that once upon a time there was a country called Pakistan. It was created by a power hungry war lord. By making one bad choice after another, they ate themselves out of existence. The moral of the story children is – do not divide. Co-exist with others and share this world. Division is driven by selfish people. And selfish people should never be allowed to succeed. Otherwise they will destroy this world.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

KPSingh:
“Making an enemy out of US is bad thing”.
“In world history. We will be telling our grand kids that once upon a time there was a country called Pakistan. It was created by a power hungry war lord. By making one bad choice after another, they ate themselves out of existence. The moral of the story children is – do not divide. Co-exist with others and share this world. Division is driven by selfish people. And selfish people should never be allowed to succeed. Otherwise they will destroy this world.”

-KPSingh, division was and is the destiny of India. It was divided in 1947, subdivided it will be again when Kashmir breaks off followed by the Maoists. You are a breed of insecure people who resent the creation of Pakistan. We are a nation who won its independence and learnt to protect its freedom. If you mess with us now you know what will happen, just accept the reality that Pakistan is.
On making an enemy out of US, don’t worry we know how to play with fire. We have had super powers poking in our backyard for 30 years, we are making our choices and will stand by it. Thanks for showing concern though.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

KPSingh:outsmart the congress “Kindly do not taint Gandhi’s name by mentioning him. Jinnah successfully pleaded a case for himself. He could care less for Muslims or anyone else. He was a power maniac and would do anything to be in power.”

-Jinnah was a great statesman, Gandhi was a shortsighted, myopic person who did not take into consideration the concerns of Muslims. As a spokesman and representative of Muslims, Jinnah a smart and educated guy simply outsmarted the congress thugs and singlehanded manner won the independence of Indian Muslims. Today we proudly call ourselves Pakistanis and respect Jinnah as founder of Pakistan. More next time.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Mortal:
On China-India-Pakistan relations, I think the good thing is that Pakistan also accepts the realities of India-China relations. In our view it does not have a negative impact, If both these three nations can have good and excellent relations it can create an atmosphere of trust and have a generally stabilizing affect on the region. It does not necessarily have to be confrontational, India-China fought war in 1962, Pakistan-India fought wars in 65-71 etc. But things are changing for better, in your own words this is an age of globalization and not confrontation. Just imagine a future where Pakistan and India can have the kind of relationship like Pakistan and China. For a country like Pakistan with a struggling economy we would need good trade and bilateral relations with everyone. Confrontation serves no purpose and we should get all the disputes out of our way.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive
 

Richard Holbrooke, his intellect and seemingly Herculean efforts will be a hard vacuum to fill. I’m sure America has plenty of good, honest, intellectual, hardworking citizens who could become a diplomat of equivalent standing.
I hope they can make it through the knuckle-heads who have sacrificed democracy for a fast buck from the lobbiers and are leading the west to global conflict.

Posted by Tiu | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk: “division was and is the destiny of India. It was divided in 1947, subdivided it will be again when Kashmir breaks off followed by the Maoists.”

You are partially correct in this statement. The British planted enough land mines so that India would implode and fall apart. The chances of its survival as a single nation was close to nil in 1947. But the British were wrong. They underestimated the capability of Indian leaders who put national growth as a priority over other things, including military might.

From 1947 to 1960, growth was the focus. India had a very weak military and in 1962 it was exposed. In reality what has made India become united slowly over the years is Pakistan’s frequent assaults in various forms. If Pakistan had minded its own business like Bangladesh or Nepal, India still was on the verge of self destruction. Kashmir had become peaceful during these years. Problems arose elsewhere.

Inept leadership and divisive politics did push India to the brink. But your military leaders had no patience. They wanted to see India burn too quickly. What they did ended up providing patriotic feelings to Indians. So we thank your military for that. After 1991, India made the right choice and more accomplishments and progress have made India more cohesive. Kashmir is only a blip on the screen. No one is going to mess with India on Kashmir. Presidents and Prime Ministers of wealthy and powerful nations are making trips to India one by one making business deals. If your generals try to sabotage that, then your country will face more isolation.

Maoism was more prevalent than today. In southern states of India, it has lost its steam because of economic growth. It has managed to survive in the relatively backward states in North and Central India. But here too economic growth is spreading in all directions. It is only a matter of time and Maoism will lose its steam there as well. There will always be small groups of criminals trying to wield the gun. But that is part of the fabric.

“You are a breed of insecure people who resent the creation of Pakistan.”

If Pakistan had not become like a criminal in the neighborhood, we will not be concerned about your country that much. People always have to be watchful in a neighborhood prone to crime. We are being cautious. We have no regrets about Pakistan going its way. We know it is for real. But it was an unnecessary land mine set up by the imperial British to blow up the sub-continent. Unfortunately the land mine is going to blow on their face. It is only a matter of time.

“We are a nation who won its independence and learnt to protect its freedom.”

It is not about your freedom that we are talking about. Instead of keeping it your country is trying to affect the freedom of others in the neighborhood. That is the real problem. Your military’s freedom is well protected. They have set up a barricade around themselves by putting the ordinary people of Pakistan as sand bags.

“If you mess with us now you know what will happen, just accept the reality that Pakistan is.”

We do not want to have anything to with your country. It is your country that has been a constant irritant using one excuse or the other. Your country is suffering from paranoia like a mental patient and is throwing stones at people nearby out of that.

And your threats with nukes do not make much impact on us. We have enough systems in place to take care of that. Plus the world is not going to let you hold on to dangerous weapons for too long. Now that your country is pissing the Americans off, trust me, the Americans will mess your country up even more.

“On making an enemy out of US, don’t worry we know how to play with fire.”

Sure. We can see that. Suicide bombs are going off everyday. Drones are killing key militants who have been valuable assets to Pakistan’s military. A lot of investment has been blown away by the military. That is why I see news of protest against drones being propped up by your military. Keep playing with fire. I don’t think you are aware that it is burning your country from within. That is why we from outside can see the self destruction process in progress. Being inside, blinded by pride and emotion, you are not going to see it. And that is no surprise.

“We have had super powers poking in our backyard for 30 years, we are making our choices and will stand by it. Thanks for showing concern though.”

Super powers poked their noses. But your generals leased out your nation to gain benefits out of it. During those years, battles were confined to regions outside of Pakistan. Now the situation is different. Pakistan is now being realized as part of the problem. That was not the case during those “wonder” years. By becoming an enemy of the US and tilting towards China, Pakistan is placing the last nail on its coffin. The US will hammer it down. Wait and watch. Pakistan has survived all these years with American tax payers money. China does not pay. It takes. If it sinks 20 billion, it will count every penny out of it and take 30 billion back.

Blinded by emotions and feelings of jealousy and frustration your countrymen are falling into a whirlpool from which there is going to be no escape. Enjoy the remaining days of 2010. 2011 onwards things will not be so good.

And you can keep your nukes and kiss them everyday.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk: “Jinnah was a great statesman, Gandhi was a shortsighted, myopic person who did not take into consideration the concerns of Muslims.”

Gandhi fasted to stop violence against Muslims. It angered Hindus so much that a Hindu fanatic shot him dead. Gandhi preached non-violence and co-existence. He saw the machination of the British in causing a dangerous divide. He quit from politics after 1947 and settled down to social work.
Jinnah fits what you describe – short sighted, myopic and pretending to be concerned about Muslims. As Pakistan has clearly demonstrated over the years, it is a product of Jinnah’s selfish and short sighted ambition. Jinnah became a head of state. And his country fell apart ever since. It is still on a tail spin.

“As a spokesman and representative of Muslims, Jinnah a smart and educated guy simply outsmarted the congress thugs and singlehanded manner won the independence of Indian Muslims. Today we proudly call ourselves Pakistanis and respect Jinnah as founder of Pakistan. More next time.”

Lives of Muslims has not become better by making a country for Muslims. Feudalism, ethnic rivalry, linguistic clash (East Pakistan), sectarian violence, radicalism, corruption, wars in the neighborhood, suicide blasts etc are the legacy of Jinnah. You can pray to him as much as you want. Reality and truth remain the same – Jinnah’s legacy is doomed for complete failure.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

Umairpk: “Jinnah was a great statesman, Gandhi was a shortsighted, myopic person who did not take into consideration the concerns of Muslims.”

You need a history lesson Umair, the REAL history & not the Pakistani version of it. So, browse the web & check it out. Gandhi is the reason that you have a Pakistan today & he paid for that, with his life. A vast majority of the Congress leaders were against the partition (with Vallabh bhai Patel being the strongest voice of all). It was only Jinnah & Nehru who wanted the partition in order to acheive their own personal ambitions. If not for Gandhi, there would have been NO Pakistan but only India with Valabh bhai Patel as the first Prime Minister.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

As for the $20 bn deals between China & Pakistan, bear in mind, these are very long term deals. They are not immediate orders to buy Pakistani products by China or anything like that but rather long term commitments (5, 10, 15 yrs +) by China to build various projects inside Pakistan. So although it will help Pakistan’s economy, the end result will be a net gain by China. Also, for most of these projects to get started, Pakistan will have to stabalize first or else the Chinese will not risk their investments.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

Let us not overstretch the issue. The world is concerned with the tortures being committed by the so called civilised western world leader! The same leader who is called the big Satan or evil by the Iranians and the Imperialist country which has been waging wars against the weaker Nations based on fabricated lies, says Mr Chavez.
Now about the torture by the Indian military in kashmir or other parts of India must be obvious to every person with a minimal common sence. Like some one mentioned torture is common in most underdeveloped countries of the world( ofcourse there are various types of tortures, the ordinary one or the most advanced one). I look at the simple logic that if a Govt. uses its military against its citizens, then the torture by the State in that country must be the accepted practice and order of the day. I can straightaway single out few countries in this category, India, Pakistan,Siri Lanka, Burma(I refuse to recognise its new name), Philipines and there must be many others. Mind you I do not regard police manhandling and beating of its citizens holding street demonstrations, in these countries as tortures. I also believe that Indian torture of kashmiris is not discriminatory, but must be a common practice by the police and military against any citizen of other states as well. I would not regard beating in public with sticks of the demonstrators, who are protesting against the Govt. for one reason or other as torture. It is regretful in a democracy but people get used to it similar to the corporal punishment in schools, I guess in Britain it is still allowed?

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

Talking about torture in Indian Kashmir, here’s a peice on the angelic deeds of the Pakistani army in PoK.

“Pakistan Army and ISI is kidnapping and killing people of Gilgit Baltistan”

http://story.pakistantelegraph.com/index .php/ct/9/cid/8c3d7d78943a99c7/id/721313  /cs/1/ht/Pakistan-Army-and-ISI-is-kidna pping-and-killing-people-of-Gilgit-Balti stan/

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive
 

Those who visit Iraq and see the grave of general Gordon, would have the chance to read the following;

He fought well, and kept the faith!

Mr Holbrooke was a shrewd diplomat and recognised that the so called Taliban offer of talks after USA withdrawl meant surrender!
Let this be inscripted on the grave of Mr Holbrooke; he refused to surrender and kept his faith in the American Power.
Like the former chancellor of Germany said that Alexander the great was the only wise one who left Afghanistan with the shortest stay possible!

Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

PS
The talk about Indians torture in Kashmir is a diversion.
Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive
 

Cave Mullah: “The talk about Indians torture in Kashmir is a diversion.”

No it is about Richard Holbrooke. Take a break from whatever it is that you are smoking.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive
 

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