Pakistan vs U.S. Dumbing down the drones debate

April 14, 2011

tribesmen2If there was one thing the United States might have learned in a decade of war is that military might alone cannot compensate for lack of knowledge about people and conditions on the ground.  That was true in Afghanistan and Iraq, and may also turn out to be the case in Libya.

Yet the heated  debate about using Predator drones to target militants in the tribal areas of Pakistan – triggered by the spy row between the CIA and the ISI – appears to be falling into a familiar pattern – keep bombing versus stop bombing. Not whether, when and how drones might be effective, based on specific conditions and knowledge of the ground, and when they are counter-productive. 

Combined with that is a tendency to discuss the use of drones in isolation without taking account of the historical context (Pakistan and the United States have been rowing about this for several years – it is not new)  or indeed the broader political context (a botched drone attack by the CIA is guaranteed to enrage all the more if it comes at a time when American diplomats are trying to convince Pakistan they want to improve relations.)  

Consider, for example, the case of a tribesman with a performing monkey who gathered an audience of turban-clad, rifle-bearing men around him in a village in 2005. The U.S. controllers of the drone mistook the event for a weapons-training session or military briefing and dropped a missile, killing many in the audience.  That story was recounted by General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, now head of the Pakistan Army, and quoted by Brian Cloughley in his book “War, Coups and Terror”. “This, said the General, was an example of lack of cultural understanding,” wrote Cloughley.

Then there was the botched drone attack on Damadola in Bajaur agency in 2006 – by some accounts it was intended to target al Qaeda deputy Ayman al Zawahiri.  According to the Pakistani version, many women and children were among the victims of the strike, enraging the local population, driving them into the arms of local Taliban militants and fuelling a ferocious insurgency which took the Pakistan military several years to contain.

In language that could have been written today (and it has) the Guardian reported at the time that Pakistan had lodged a strong protest with the Americans over the attack and “the strained relation between Pakistan and the U.S. has been pushed to breaking point.” It blamed the botched attack on faulty intelligence on the ground.

Compare that, though, to the killing of Baitullah Mehsud, leader of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), in a drone strike in 2009.  His death was welcomed by Pakistani authorities, and indeed by many ordinary Pakistanis who blamed him for bomb attacks in Pakistan. Good intelligence. Specific target. And probably the high point of cooperation between the United States and Pakistan over the use of drones.

Just last month, a senior Pakistani military officer was quoted as saying the drone attacks were effective, and most of those killed were hard-core militants, including foreigners.

But then another drone attack in North Waziristan in March killed more than 40 people, prompting a furious condemnation from Kayani, who said it had targetted a jirga of tribal elders. Remember this is the same man who complained about U.S. lack of cultural understanding in 2005 – there is some consistency here.

The timing – just after CIA contractor Raymond Davis was released from a Pakistani jail – could hardly have been worse. It raised questions about whether the drone operators were working completely independently of their political masters who at the time were engaged in trying to patch up relations with Pakistan soured by the Davis affair.  (So much for U.S. aspirations to put together an integrated military-civilian-political strategy.)

Those same questions on timing came up this week when a meeting between ISI chief  Lieutenant-General Ahmed Shuja Pasha and CIA director Leon Panetta in Washington to repair counter-terrorism cooperation was followed two days later by another drone attack. “It may have been for a very good reason and a quality target, but the politics of it look a little insensitive,” the New York Times quoted former CIA officer Bruce Riedel as saying.

It is difficult to predict the outcome of the latest row between Pakistan and the United States. The chances are the use of drones will continue, because under the right circumstances they can be useful to both countries. But at risk of stating the obvious, airpower needs good intelligence on the ground. While some have suggested that Washington go it alone without Pakistani help, the United States does not have a great track record in the kind of cultural expertise and linguistic skills that would allow it to hire its own reliable spies, let alone identify targets and avoid killing large numbers of civilians.

Of course there are other issues. The deep distrust between Pakistan and the United States which goes back to 9/11 and indeed before. The perception in Pakistan that drone attacks are an assault on its sovereignty, regardless of whether they are sometimes effective – a perception that bolsters support for, or at least tolerance of, Islamist militants.  The arguments of those who either reject the use of force altogether in the tribal areas, or find the unmanned Predator a particularly troublesome weapon. 

But all that said, dumbing down the debate on drones into what is effectively a reframing of the “with us or against us” dichotomy is unhelpful.  More interesting would be a discussion of how and when Predator drone strikes might or might not be effective; and indeed on how the drone missile programme, whose use is still officially a secret, might be integrated into overall strategy rather than operating on a moral, legal and geographical frontier whose rules none of us know.

124 comments

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Wow, I can’t believe someone in our media outlets has taken the 10 minutes to try to understand the complexities of dealing with a sovereign nation. Keep up the good work Reuters!

Posted by rizwanc | Report as abusive

Why is the “mighty” nuclear armed nation of 183 million Muslims does not tell the US to take a royal hike? Why is its much boasted military allowing drones to take off from its air force base? Are they lacking teeth? What happened to all the chest thumping? Let us see if they can shut the door on the US if they are so brave as they claim.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

For starters, Pakistan and United States are engaged in this type of relationship since the C-130 crash that killed Gen. Zia Ul Haq. \even before that the Afghan Bureau of ISI worked independently of the CIA. The CIA-ISI relationship is more old and complex than it looks like. Lets see how things move. Certainly the ISI is pushing the limits here.
The US is paying the price for disengagement from 1988 to 2001, after 9-11 things changed and now have resulted in a great deal of mistrust. There appears to be no coordination between the State Department and |CIA.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

KPSingh:
Mature thinking is not one of your strong points. Most mature countries do not break relations even with enemy countries, there is even less reason in globalized world. There are range of issues involved and there is effort to balance items on both sides.
Like I said a month ago, there are various realignments going on and this is part of it.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Matrixx,

You are saying that Iranians are not mature. They kicked the US out entirely. They are a theocratic democracy. Yet they do not suffer from Madrasa syndrome that is hurting Pakistan.

And I have not advocated breaking up relations with the USA. I only said that Pakistanis chest thump so much about their mighty nukes and 180 odd million strong, vibrant nation. Yet they have not gone beyond whining about the US killing its citizens with impunity by launching the drones from its own soil. So I wonder what happened all that bravado when it comes to telling the US that Pakistan will no longer be supporting American efforts on its WOT and close down all such missions. America will be hurt. But since according to you they are mature, they will not break off with Pakistan. See my point?

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

KPSingh:
“Yet they have not gone beyond whining about the US killing its citizens with impunity by launching the drones from its own soil.”
I have not given you my opinion on drone attacks so far but here is what I think. It is morally and legally a repugnant act. The reaction is for people of Pakistan to decide. Brave men don’t have to show stupidity to prove their bravery. Personally, I like to take this issue to United Nations as a start and then go forward from there.
Now what is your (India) position on these drone attacks? I hope you are open.

Again you seem not to know much about Iran. Their Madrassa, university education is well integrated with society and government. They have a cohesive society. They are not as weak as some would like to portray. They have cooperated with America in Iraq and Afghanistan when it was in their interest. They have per capita income four times India’s per capita income despite lower level of western education.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

I wonder how much truth there is in the theory that this drone business is really a cat and mouse game between both parties. One reads a lot of analysts make the point that at one level there is co-operation and that the ISI and/or Army do provide intelligence and that most of the strikes are really based on these. On the other hand this cooperation is clandestine to assuage domestic opinion and also to pass off the blame when things go wrong.

Considering that the drones operate from within Pakistan it is more than likely some deal is in place. In the long run it does help Pakistan play up the anti US hype at will and also make use of the fire power to gain operational advantage.

I wish the author had covered this aspect. I presume she is aware of these theories. Without taking them into account, any analysis on this situation is bound to be incomplete.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

Matrix:”Mature thinking is not one of your strong points. Most mature countries do not break relations even with enemy countries, there is even less reason in globalized world. There are range of issues involved and there is effort to balance items on both sides”.

KP,What he meant is that, All the rhetoric against America is only for public consumption, while the Army shouts against america it takes money and leases its Frontier provinces as target practice for americans!

“They(Iran) have per capita income four times India’s per capita income despite lower level of western education”. May be matrix did not consider other Islamic citadels like krgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Niger, Chad (of course pakistan) etc which despite having glorious non-western education they remain behind India in Percapita.
One cannot but wonder in his selective application of statistics to suit his arguments. while the percapita incomes are attained by combination of resource (eg:oil) distribution,empowerment of people etc. Is he proposing that, since Iraq has better per capita income, it is safer than India. He should ask those pakistanis who in the name of tourism make into India and disappear into thin air!

Matrix: “They have cooperated with America in Iraq and Afghanistan when it was in their interest” – He subconciously reminds us the case of pakistan itself, that every country (or its establishment in particular) only works for its own self-interests and its not a sin. Anyways, the only question is how a country can go in its pursuit of its self (or selfish) interests, Pakistan has gone beyond “where no man had gone before!” offering their own citizens for drones for target practice and test of the client’s(US) technological eminence.

Common sense tells us that indiscriminate bombing campaigns to deal with insurgencies will always fail and makes the medicine of quick bombing worse than the original problem itself. The mistreated and aggreived populace revolts in even more ruthless way and it becomes a perpetual conflict consuming the entire region. If pakistani state had any sense of Integrity, it would have sent special forces on the ground, taken each terrorist group by group, offered amnesty to young and relatively lesser criminals,not to mention improved governance in those areas, punished the more diabolical ones in courts of law (like perhaps what we are doing with kassab) displaying an example for future law makers,enforcers and law givers. One must also be reminded of Sikh insurgency and Ulfa of Assam whose insurgencies, India was able to end. Pakistan before advising us on kashmir must look at its Baluchistan whose insurgency is raging since pakistan’s independence.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Pakistan also wants the drones to be given to them. And the US is not budging. I think therein lies the problem. Pakistan is allowing the US to use its bases for launching them for two reasons – they can get to see how good or useful they are. And they can misguide the US into knocking off their own internal enemies (those who do not align with Pak army’s overall goals.

The US knows where the drones will really be used if they hand them over to Pakistan – in Kashmir and China will get the same technology by reverse engineering. Then Pakistan will have a steady supply of the drones. The US has learned from the experience of Stinger missiles and Tomahawk cruise missiles that ended up with China through Pakistan.

And they do not seem much concerned about their air force killing their own civilians:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/86 17843.stm

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Sensiblepatriot: “If pakistani state had any sense of Integrity, it would have sent special forces on the ground, taken each terrorist group by group, offered amnesty to young and relatively lesser criminals,not to mention improved governance in those areas, punished the more diabolical ones in courts of law (like perhaps what we are doing with kassab) displaying an example for future law makers,enforcers and law givers.”

This means they would have to stand in two opposing rows and shoot themselves. Are you kidding? Who do you think is behind all the terrorism here?

Mumbai attacks were organized by the same criminals. Mr. Rana is spilling the beans:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world  /us/Rana-Headley-implicate-Pak-ISI-in-M umbai-attack-during-ISI-chiefs-visit-to- US/articleshow/7958954.cms

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

I read on a reputed news site a few months ago (probably, the long war journal or huffington post) that civilian casualties in FATA/KP caused by the Pakistani military is at least 4 times those caused by the US drones. Somehow, we never hear about that & it’s a non issue with the Pakistani establishment or people. I guess, it’s OK for a muslim army to kill their own muslim civilians.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

SPSingh and buddies:
If you guys can’t stay on topic and don’t respond to questions raised, then it it is futile to have any conversion. You are only interested in hate Pakistan propaganda. Have a go at it.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Brian Cloughley is a propagandist on PA/ISI pay roll. How much did he care for “cultural understanding” when it comes to Pakistani terrorism on neighbouring countries?

About missed targets, and civilian killings with drone attacks. This is unfortunate. But this is just incidental, wehreas Pakistani terrorism is deliberately on unarmed civilians. examples are bombing marriage parties, mowing down waiting passengers at train station, attacking the residential quarters of soldiers to kill wives and children of children. When contrasted with Pakistani terrorism like that incidental damage looks less of a deal.

More careful drone operations should continue, and paks can only be coerced through various means. What paks think about this is of secondary concern.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Paks have a national buisiness plan. Using terrorism to intimidate rest of the world and milk aid money.

They complain about incidental civilian deaths. But it is worthwhile to remember deliberate civilian deaths sponsored by paks:

http://tinyurl.com/5uzdog8

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Matrix:
“If you guys can’t stay on topic and don’t respond to questions raised, then it it is futile to have any conversion. You are only interested in hate Pakistan propaganda.”

-Matrix, I have had the opportunity to visit Nepal this past week and from the start of our journey where we had to wait on the runway before the plane could recieve permission from Indian air traffic controllers to overfly the Indian airspace, to the nepalese taxi driver to hotel managers and american tourists everyone was of the opinion that it is the Indian political elite that have isolated and insulated themselves. KPSingh represents the typical mindset of the India political elites, disenfranchised, isolated, his comments always suggest the breakup of Pakistan. In Nepal a general person was of the opinion that every year India siezes atleast 100 km of their territory. Nepal also has water issues with India and they resent Indian influence there. Same is the case with Americans, while Pakistan-US relations face the ups and downs of such variation, on the other hand US-India relations are not better off. It is in the psyche of Indian elite, they might not come from a good background, nor is their thinking constructive and advance. They still have a petty mentality but their aims are too high, they dream of flying high, of India becoming a super power on world map. That is why they look down upon all their neighbours, be it Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka or whoever. Their latest propaganda is to depict Pakistan as a state sponsor of terrorism. What a shame and farce, when in reality Pakistan has suffered from the terrorism which is originating due to the situation in Afghanistan.
The visit to Nepal gave me a glimpse of India, very unfortunate the reality of India-Pakistan relations. All the goodwill of cricket and films are there, but still until the Indian political elite open themselves up, broaden their mindset and mix up with others then India can move on, Otherwise its problems with its neighbours will always persist.
In the end, they hate Pakistan, they hate china, they hate Nepal, they hate Bangladesh, they hate sri Lanka. I am not sure what they love? maybe money, booze, corruption scandals, corrupt to the core and power drunk. And they have the spine to call Pakistan a terrorist state. Shame on them. Rex minor said once, let the dogs bark and the caravan moves on. Atleast the Chinese have become a force to be reckoned with on world stage and have more leverage than the Indians. And India is not even in the race with China, let alone equalize with it. Trust me, with all the hype of emerging India and blah blah, India’s political elite is not taking it anywhere. And guess what the Americans know everything as it is.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Mortal:”I read on a reputed news site a few months ago (probably, the long war journal or huffington post) that civilian casualties in FATA/KP caused by the Pakistani military is at least 4 times those caused by the US drones. Somehow, we never hear about that & it’s a non issue with the Pakistani establishment or people. I guess, it’s OK for a muslim army to kill their own muslim civilians.”

-Incorrect, in reality PAF has used precision guided bombs to target millitant hideouts. The ground troops and tribes have cooperated in military offensives on the frontlines and civilian casualties have been avoided altogether. Where there has been an incident or two, corrective actions have been taken. So next time you claim some story either post a valid link from legitimate source or try your propaganda somewhere else. YOU sir are not a credible source, just a loudmouth liar, we need a link and a news story to establish if pakistan military caused any civilian casualty in the active combat zone. Until then please shut up.

Posted by Umairpk | Report as abusive

Umair,

Your analysis of India is spot on, you forgot to add one more major sin and heinous crime India has committed against its most peaceful neighbour -Pakistan – or perhaps you didn’t know about it.

“In Mianwali, in Punjab, by the banks of the River Indus, we surveyed the impact of the floods with a local businessman and landowner.
All around, we could see the devastation caused to his farms, and the effect that would have on hundreds of labourers.
I asked him whether he believed money had in the past been embezzled instead of going into flood prevention projects, as many have suggested. And who, generally, he blamed for the lack of preparedness.
His response was surprising.

Many flood victims have been neglected
“You know, we’ve never had so much water come down the Kabul River (from Afghanistan) and flow into the Indus?” he said. “Strange, isn’t it?”
I took a moment to digest the question, then asked if he was trying to suggest Afghanistan or America had something to do with the floods.
He paused for a moment.
“India,” he said, without a hint of irony.
Slightly taken aback by what this educated and erudite man was saying, I suggested that there had been the highest rainfall ever recorded in Pakistan, and surely that could not have been caused by India.
He scoffed: “Don’t you know they have the technology to create artificial clouds and send them across the border?”

The full article is enlightening – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/fr om_our_own_correspondent/9110766.stm

I really cannot say anymore to someone who so blatantly states “Their latest propaganda is to depict Pakistan as a state sponsor of terrorism.” Just enjoying the humour and having a good laugh.

It is not ‘latest propaganda’ Umair, India has been spreading this horrible and foul lie for the last 20 years and more, and like they say, if you repeat a lie often enough people start believing it. Guess what? India has fooled the whole world with this kind of cowardly behaviour, everyone says Pakistan is a sponsor of terrorism Two British PMs the present and the past have agreed with India on this. One even was so badly fooled by all these Indian lies that he said “I wish we had listened to India earlier”. When will these poor illiterate, uneducated people ever open their eyes? How sad. India is rotten, India is hated, India is the worlds most poorest, dirties, hungriest, broke country – and look at our Pakistan – shining like the stars and moon and sun put together and a paradise for its people on earth and all its neighbours – except India of course. That is why Pakistan will save the world from India.

The world watches with fingers crossed and a hope that the great Pakistan with its ever victorious army, never mind these silly foreign history books, and its nuclear arsenal will deliver them soon of this evil of a country!

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

kpsingh0l”:”This means they would have to stand in two opposing rows and shoot themselves. Are you kidding? Who do you think is behind all the terrorism here?”

Quite evidently, what I was proposing was the way to conduct an anti-insurgency operations, while I fully adhere to the fact that Pakistan has no men of integrity to take on these militants as this has been their policy of abetting terror to suit their purposes.

For the lack of evidence and afraid of being stamped out as a bigot, I merely took a more ambivalent line regarding terror attacks on mumbai which I said, would have been conducted by the active encouragment of some of the lumpen elements in pak state authorities. With David headley and Rana episodes, it is clear it has a clear nod from ISI Cheif and establishment. Pity that we have to depend on the process of law and evidence before we “..have the spine to call Pakistan a terrorist state” as umair put it.

Umairpk, While some pakistani’s with their God given right to blame indians without evidence that 10 million indian soldiers siege the kashmir state (musharaff said it, I wonder whether he knows the difference between 10 lakh and 10 million), zillions of consulates in afghanistan to perpetrate conspiracies to corrupt taliban into fighting pakistani state, conspiring against your teenagers to see our pirated morally corrupt bollywood movies, conspiring housewives to watch our hindu corrupt soaps, conspiring to give pakistan MFN(most favoured nation) status while at the same time conspiring to fail to get the same from pakistan, conspiring to steal pakistan’s waters while at the same time conspiring to release huge deluge to submerge the wheat and cotton fields, conspiring to drug pakistani diplomats to work for developing nations at WTO instead of OECD countries, conspiring to become superpower ..how dare of them..
conspire to build and develop afghan infrastructure so that afghans show hatred for pakistanis,conspire to guard india from china,conspiring the world cricket to act as india’s lackey and conspiring shahid afridi to say good about india,. are there any more?

umaripk:”That is why they look down upon all their neighbours, be it Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka or whoever”. This is the case of classic selective amnesia, wouldn’t the Japanese,korean,phillippino and vietnamese feel the same way about china. The mexicans feel the same way about US and so with the German neighbours and countries with better and established institutions work out better treaties with bigger states, but with states like Nepal which are tottering cannot make any step for progress leave alon reaching complex national treaties. The case of Srilanka and bangladesh is diametrically opposite to what you say, over the years relations between these two states with India has improved so much that the trade and other aspects have become irreversible. It is only pakistan which lives in the past.Please get updated regarding relations with bangladesh and srilanka and we are confident of nepal too.

The case of superpowerdom is curious because even if our percapita reaches 1/10th of the average japanese, we will still overtake japan as the second largest economy in Asia and third in the world. While we are not much worried about superpowerdom,pakistan should first worry about the growing gap between pakistan and india as this will generate more favourable climate for Inida. As a testament to my argument,please look at the following link to the growing gap in the fundementals.Accoring to many experts India is in the demographic sweetspot where working age population bulges while birthrates decline, while the same experts are confused to explain why pakistan with even better demographics than India fails to grow.Time for your introspection may be or may be not?
http://www.google.com/publicdata?ds=wb-w di&met=ny_gdp_mktp_cd&idim=country:IND&d l=en&hl=en&q=india+gdp#met=ny_gdp_mktp_c d&idim=country:IND:PAK

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

With David headley and Rana episodes, it is clear it has a clear nod from ISI Cheif and establishment.
Posted by sensiblepatriot
==
This statement implies some one else planned Mumbai 2008 and ISI/PA merely gave OK! Indians need to move beyond these assumptions and face the reality. We are not going to find actual video tapes or recorded conversations of Kayani and Pasha talking to each other outlining the details of the Taj Hotel and CST train station in Mumbai :-) Everything was planned well, the strategy was innovative (good job Kayani& Pasha), but it was undone by Kasab getting himself caught alive and of course by the heroics of poorly paid constable Omble.

About the drone attacks Pakistani pusssycats think they roar at India like lions, and are willing to take all humiliation, and indignities as long as they like to maintain anti-India hatred. hostility. When it comes to drone attacks all they could say is meow, meow.

They are full of anti-India hatred and venom, they travel and look for confirmation of their belief systems in Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh! Which of these 3 countries is falling apart, and has begging for aid as a national business model?

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

It is interesting to see some Pakistanis making sweeping statements about India with very limited sample. The guy goes to Nepal and talks to a couple of guys there. He did not go there to run a national survey. Who knows whether anyone told him anything there or not. One can always make up lies along the way and project it to suit his arguments. One lady in Guardian CiF wrote similarly. She said, she went to Delhi and met with a couple of rikshaw pullers, who happened to be poor and Muslim. So she made a claim that in India, Muslims are the lowest of lowest class, mostly surviving as rikshaw pullers and dung collectors. This is a generalization about a nation of billion people by someone who claimed to have gone there. Some Pakistanis seem to be good at imaginative stories that others are only willing to believe without a question. Their unity is being tried with a victimhood syndrome. They need a tormentor to feel victimized – Muslims in India are victims of majority Hindu hegemony; a Hindu majority India has nothing else to do other than to destroy a Muslim nation named Pakistan; America has been fooled by the Hindu India and Muslim women are being raped by their drones and so on.
There is no use reasoning with these Mullah infected minds. Even someone like Rex Minor appears like a philosopher to these guys. Tomorrow he is going to Sri Lanka (probably in his fantasy dream) and write another piece about how India has destroyed Sri Lanka that was once a paradise.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

@Umair

I enjoyed your humorous rants. Looks like you had a swell time in Nepal :). Before pointing a finger at the credibility of others, I suggest you take a good look in the mirror. In the mean time, I’ll be waiting with baited breath to hear the accounts of your India related conversations with the rickshaw pullers in Dhaka & the shoe shiners in Colombo. Enjoy your future “trips” as well!

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Indian friends;
I must confess that I have never visited India and I’m always willing to learn. Could you tell me how life in India is and what people in general aspire and so forth. I really like to see both urban and rural scene in pictures because it is easier absorb information. Thanks.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

kpsingh01:”Their unity is being tried with a victimhood syndrome. They need a tormentor to feel victimized – Muslims in India are victims of majority Hindu hegemony…”.
Nothing is more apt than this statement and look what the pakistani authors say one is paracha, who will perhaps annoy pakistani bloggers as always but nevertheless to know his views.
http://www.dawn.com/2011/04/17/smokers-c orner-manic-manoeuvres.html
or perhaps more objective analysis of mr sethna.
http://www.dawn.com/2011/04/17/why-is-pa kistan-ill.html
This perhaps is the best statement, “The future would look brighter if Pakistan was not a ‘failing state’ with vacillating intentions”.

If matrix wants to visit India, he can do so now as there is relatively better atmosphere now between the two and can get a visa easily(and before some maniacs from pakistan come and blow something up here), you could visit the historical city of Hastinapur/ Indraprasta (Delhi) or more financial centre like mumbai or like Hyderabad/ Bangalore/ Chandigarh which are a bit cleaner but has less to see.
Unfortunately visitors coming to India are aghast about the woeful and horrible infrastructure like airports and roads but are equally dismayed by the Infosys/Reliance Tata campusus. While the tourists believe India is overpopulated and dirty country. Businessmen realize what is wrong with India, its greatest achievement is in the private sector for a glaring failure in the government sector. Not surprisingly an American pertinently put it that he found absoulutely wonderful and better managed IT Campusus,Hotels and other Private Industries on the worst pot holed roads(where the jurisdiction is with government) while in china he saw the reverse where he could find best of Infrastructure but little autonomous ,Independent capitalists and entrepreneurs who always work under communist bosses.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

An interesting an insightful analysis on the same subject by James Traub at Foreign Policy:

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/20 11/04/15/khyber_impasse

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

I’m seeing a sudden spate of articles in the US media all talking about the same thing – stopping aid to Pakistan:

http://bit.ly/eBvGKx
http://bit.ly/gcacF3
http://on.wsj.com/et0pOr

Now I’m a bit of a cynic and conspiracy theorist, so I don’t believe that a bunch of journos suddenly decided this was an interesting story angle to cover. I think this is a storyline being floated in advance of a policy change coming down the pipeline. It’s meant to soften the public in advance of an announcement by the administration. Judging by the comments following these articles, I think the coming change in policy towards Pakistan will be welcomed by the American public.

I think Kayani and his boys overplayed their hand. Watch this space.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I think Kayani and his boys overplayed their hand.
Posted by prasadgc
=

That’s the only way they know to play. It comes from “Pakistan ideology”, a delusional supremacist ideology loaded with warrior mentality. There are no thoughts spared to building a viable nation state.

Drone attacks should continue overriding protests by paks. The only tool Paks have is terrorism. Will they attempt to launch a large scale terrorist attack in USA or Europe? They might. There is very little or no diplomatic coverage. Paks were able to indulge in extensive terrorism in India only because of diplomatic coverage provided by US for 25+yrs.

Paks have announced what is in store for the summer by killing a moderate cleric in Kashmir. A large scale terrorism inside India is lot easier than launching one inside USA.

deja vu all over again.

What PA/ISI are not factoring in is acclerating internal anarchy due to collapse of economy and governance. FDI has further declined to just about 1 billion $. There were few quiet weeks in Karachi between bursts of target killings, now it is continuous.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Matrixx,

You are most welcome to visit India. However, do not enter with any pre-conceived notions. Be open minded and feel free. Because of Mumbai attacks, Pakistanis may not be allowed to travel around that freely, thanks to Headley. But you can visit a lot of places still.

Most people do not think about Pakistan or dominating Muslims or China. In urban places, people are busy commuting to work and back, watching TV, chasing their children etc. The poor are everywhere and people go through them as though they do not exist. This is because there are so many of them that not much can be done by a few caring individuals.

Do visit different parts of the country – Goa, Mumbai, Kanya Kumari, Hyderabad, Darjeeling etc to see the incredible diversity. It might help diffuse a lot of pent up feelings that have arisen due to isolation.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

No Pakistani answered my question on why their military is not telling the Americans to leave. The discussion got side tracked. So I am bringing back the original question. If Pakistani military is as mighty as it is being projected, with a hundred nukes and missiles and a 183 million people as a shield, what prevents them from drawing the line? Why can’t they say that by the end of April 1930, all American operatives, drones and trucks have to be out of Pakistan? They always say they have China and Saudi Arabia to support them in every situation. I do not buy this logic some people give – it has always been like this, it is a love-hate relationship etc. Is it fear of India capitalizing on this that is preventing them from doing what they would do otherwise?

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

“I’m seeing a sudden spate of articles in the US media all talking about the same thing – stopping aid to Pakistan”
Posted by prasadgc

It’s not just media persons like O’Reilly & Krauthammer, who want to see the aid to Pakistan stopped. A majority of the congress also wants the same.

http://bit.ly/fFomVg

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Prasad,
American aid is mostly for show. For last year the aid was supposed to be $1.5 billion. Actual disbursement was $170 million to couple of American NGOs who promptly pocketed the money. USAID is seeking help from Pakistani agencies in bringing them to the book.

Here is another story of American help:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/151152/three -cups-of-tea-us-author-fabricated-charit y-work-in-pakistan/

Read it and make up your own mind.
Elite thinks that people are stupid and are easily lied to. People say “stick it”.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

KPSingh
“No Pakistani answered my question on why their military is not telling the Americans to leave”

I gave an answer but you did not buy it. Let me try again.

Interstate relations are based on self interest and in case of drones, the question is who is the target. Pakistan wants only those people hit who are fighting PA. Americans have their own favorites. When CIA says that they have their own intelligence what they mean is that they know their allies on the ground. This is the game and rest is easy to understand.

On another level America has already conceded the primacy of Pakistan in guiding the peace moves with final veto kept by Obama. Pakistan has made a deal with Karzai as the leading light in Kabul. The first job is to fit Petreas in this framework and then various Taliban factions.
Ask me where India comes in?

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

KPSingh
Thanks for info on India tour. May plan is already made for Istanbul this summer.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Umair & Matrix,

I believe the stability of Pakistan is dependent on the stability of Afghanistan. We are intertwined. Is there anything the world let alone Pakistan can do to make this happen? Can we reverse one great game after another? The Afghans fight amongst themselves and every foreign global or regional power has a favorite: US, Iran, China, Pakistan, Saudis etc. What can be done? It seems like an insurmountable task.

Enjoy Istanbul and do visit Jinnah Road !

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Matrixx: “Thanks for info on India tour. May plan is already made for Istanbul this summer.”

Enjoy the vacation. Turkey is a great place from what I have heard. Would like to hear back from you after your visit.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “Is there anything the world let alone Pakistan can do to make this happen?”

Afghanistan as a nation today is meaningless. This is just my opinion. It has been turned into dust by three decades of relentless war. An entire generation gas grown up facing unceasing conflict. All the cultural roots have been destroyed and replaced by poppy. In this situation, if I were to device a way out, I’d simply section it off into smaller countries – Pashtun majority region in the South and other ethnic states in the North. There is no way these guys will ever work together. There is no glue that will hold them anymore. At least one of these countries will survive and grow. They might still go to war with each other. But there is no other way this place can be managed.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

“American aid is mostly for show”

EVEN more the reason for Paks to decline it and say NO !!

Are the Americans begging the paks to take a few billion dollars?

or is it the othernway round?

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

KPSingh
“No Pakistani answered my question on why their military is not telling the Americans to leave”

You got another non-answer.

As the links posted by GP show Americans seem to be completely fed up with pak duplicity and want to stop aid.

http://tribune.com.pk/story/151360/a-beg ging-bowl-in-hand/

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

For Indians looking for an answer:
Here is a more detailed write-up in your favorite paper, putting in black and white what I have been saying all along, but you are too dense to understand.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/18/world/ asia/18pakistan.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1

NYT has left out some important aspects of the problem but then you won’t understand finer threads to higher level thinking.

Despite all the rancor on this blog I’m willing to engage decent Indians because I would not give up on neighbors.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Upon America’s exit, Pakistan should put half her army on the western border. We need to enforce something called passports and visas to get in or out of the porous border. We should give special treatment to families that would be stranded from each side. Both Iran and China stay vigilant on the AfPak border. Pakistan should minimize interference in Afghanistan with the exception of checking Indian influence. The Jihad building up in Afghanistan from the seeds of cold-war and colonialism is extremely dangerous. We cannot control, contain or contest it. It is best to make peace with everyone, be partial to no one and focus on building the nation’s institutions.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Matrixx: “Pakistan wants only those people hit who are fighting PA. Americans have their own favorites. When CIA says that they have their own intelligence what they mean is that they know their allies on the ground. This is the game and rest is easy to understand.”

Based on what I am observing, I think the Pakistani military establishment is getting very uncomfortable as the Americans seem to be zeroing in on their “assets”. Hence all the hue and cry. It looks like the Americans have figured out a way to go after their targets without relying on Pakistan, which is something they did before. This means, Pakistan cannot afford to keep its assets safe while directing the Americans to selected targets that do not align with them. And that edge is being lost. Hence the sudden protests and calls for cutting down American operatives on Pakistan soil. I am sure the US had the same number of its personnel on the ground seeking intelligence. I guess Mr. Raymond Davis came too close to the LeT, which Pakistani military has tried to preserve at all costs. He may not be the only one involved. So Pakistani military is worried about where it will lead to. The CIA is becoming less dependent on them to execute their plans.

“On another level America has already conceded the primacy of Pakistan in guiding the peace moves with final veto kept by Obama.”

All this is diplomatic facade. What goes on behind may be totally different. The heat is being turned up on Pakistani military as its nefarious activities can be slowly exposed by the CIA to gain more leverage.

“Pakistan has made a deal with Karzai as the leading light in Kabul. The first job is to fit Petreas in this framework and then various Taliban factions.”

It was not long ago that Pakistan called him an American stooge, corrupt leader etc. Now they are desperately trying to cozy up with him. The Americans will not leave without getting what they want. If they fail, they will not leave without causing long lasting damage to the region.

“Ask me where India comes in?”

India comes in your dreams and haunts you. And it is very clear in your words.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “Upon America’s exit, Pakistan should put half her army on the western border.”

And the other half? You guys know we are not the enemy. Your real enemy is on the Western border and inside your country.

“We need to enforce something called passports and visas to get in or out of the porous border.”

How difficult it is to manufacture fake passports in the lawless land in NWFP where they can make state of the art guns in their tiny shops? With corruption being the norm, does anyone care for passports? If visas are imposed, it might lead to the danger of NWFP protesting violently, raising secessionist attempts. They do not like laws, period.

“Both Iran and China stay vigilant on the AfPak border.”

Why China? What do they have common here?

“Pakistan should minimize interference in Afghanistan with the exception of checking Indian influence.”

If China is going to be involved, India is going to get involved. If you want India out of there, get China out of the whole region, including Pakistan. Otherwise India will not step down. We need to protect our interests much like your country is justified in protecting its interests.

“The Jihad building up in Afghanistan from the seeds of cold-war and colonialism is extremely dangerous. We cannot control, contain or contest it. It is best to make peace with everyone, be partial to no one and focus on building the nation’s institutions.”

You are being partial to India, which is a major player in the region. India’s ties with Afghanistan cannot be stopped by anyone.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Matrixx,

The NYT article you linked to says pretty much the same things – that there has been a gradual falling apart of the US and Pakistan.

I think what you are trying to say is that this is going to be to the detriment of the US and that Pakistan is going to end up on top, achieving all its objectives in Afghanistan and elsewhere. The US will retreat from the region in disgrace, its power and influence greatly diminished as a result.

I’m afraid I have the opposite opinion, and so do many others on this blog and elsewhere.

The US may or may not prevail in Afghanistan, but this is not going to benefit Pakistan in any way. On the contrary, the increasing suspicion about Pakistan on the part of the Americans is robbing Pakistan of one of the big pillars that has supported the economy and military all these years. As the Americans withdraw their support, Pakistan’s position will become more precarious. Do not imagine that China and/or Saudi Arabia will step neatly into the breach and continue with the generous assistance. This article talks about how the IMF has so far been very lax with Pakistan: http://bit.ly/hpQ5ds. This may not continue for long either.

Isn’t there any sense at all in Pakistan that the country is staring at disaster? The way things are going, you don’t need India as an enemy. There are enough existential threats.

Yet the mood seems to be one of imminent triumph. Strange.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Singh, I am a proponent for peace in South Asia but not to the point of ignorance. India is one of the many threats facing Pakistan. It is easy for you to say India is not a threat but from our perspective, you have one of our provinces in a chokehold. Removing the entire army would give India an opportunity to strengthen its posts on the LOC or grab land like Nepal or Siachen. I agree that Pak has no right to keep India out of Afghanistan but we will do so anyway due to encirclement fears.

If visas/passports can’t be enforced in FATA, let the security begin between FATA and KP.

Prasad, Sadly it does not appear that my countrymen put much value on economy. I don’t know how long we can sustain this attitude. I think the establishment will make peace with the Taliban, give them a first-class ticket back to Afghanistan to give Pak a chance to lick her wounds. A more frightening scenario is an emboldened Jihad will be refocused on liberating Kashmir. With or without Pakistan’ assistance, this will once again put Indo/Pak on a war footing. I think Saudis and China will continue to support Pakistan. China so that Pak can keep India busy, Saudis so that it can outmaneuver Iran. However, Pakistan would be wise to heed your warning about the limits of other players checking accounts. American war has been very tough, hence the triump…

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Isn’t there any sense at all in Pakistan that the country is staring at disaster? Yet the mood seems to be one of imminent triumph. Strange.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad
====

The latest post from your friend shoaibo shows the distance between him and Matrixx is only an illusion. At least Matrixx seems to be a more authentic individual, he is not camouflaging :-;

About irrationality, it has always been like that. Sindhis, Punajbis in Pakistan are Indic people gone astray. Victims of irrational, delusional ideology. When contrary evidence is presented their brain faces “cognitive dissonance” in psychological terms and doesn’t recognize the evidence and processes favorably.

PA’s Niazi signed the surrender instrument to Indian army at 5.01 pm Dec 16,1971:
http://www.virtualbangladesh.com/images/ hist/victory/surrenderdocument.jpg

Here is the front page of DAWN news paper on Dec 17, 1971:

http://www.docstrangelove.com/uploads/19 71/dawn/19711217_dawn_front_page.pdf

If that was crazy”War till victory” and “continued support by China”, a full 36 hrs later, here is the front page of DAWN on Dec 18th 1971:

http://www.docstrangelove.com/uploads/19 71/dawn/19711218_dawn_front_page.pdf

Yahya orders ceasefire! The smaller headlines are worth reading.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “Singh, I am a proponent for peace in South Asia but not to the point of ignorance.”

I agree that you are justified in your perspective. However, I feel, as an individual, that it is unnecessary. But I know that things are the way they are.

“India is one of the many threats facing Pakistan.”

Pakistan, likewise, is a threat that India faces. If you look at the history of this place, you will realize that Pakistan has been the aggressor on most occasions. There has not been an incidence where India attacked Pakistan directly. Every war has been instigated by Pakistani military. I do not have to list them here. It is interesting to see the claim that India is a threat after launching direct and indirect offensive at it on many occasions. Isn’t it like throwing stones at your neighbor’s window and then start accusing him of being a threat when he comes out with a club to punish you? India has not attacked Bangladesh or Nepal. Its proxy war inside Sri Lanka was triggered by an American threat in the 1970s, where the US attempted to build a naval base in a place called Triconamilee. All that is from cold war geo-politics. It is over and India did not interfere when Sri Lanka finished off the rebels brutally. Only Pakistan seems to think that India is trying to finish it off, while in reality there is enough evidence to show it has been the other way around.

“It is easy for you to say India is not a threat but from our perspective, you have one of our provinces in a chokehold.”

Which one? If you are indicating Balochistan, you need to provide concrete evidence. Hearsay will not count. India might have spies inside Pakistan. But that is normal activity by all nations, including Pakistan. India did not capitalize on the flood disaster in Pakistan last year. It tried to help. If India is really the enemy, you will not be seeing the Indian PM saying this:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/04/18/singhs-co mment-spurs-hopes-for-peace.html

“Removing the entire army would give India an opportunity to strengthen its posts on the LOC or grab land like Nepal or Siachen.”

Well, no one expects to remove all soldiers. My point was that there was no need to keep that kind of enmity alive at all costs. Your Kayani insists that India is the enemy. That attitude needs to change. India is looking more at China than at Pakistan. Most of its military procurement has been with an aim to counter China. But Pakistan seems to be assuming that it is equal to India and feels that it needs to keep up parity with it at all costs. And it is costing Pakistan dearly. You do not see Bangladesh or Nepal or Sri Lanka do that. They know they should not invest big time into taking on India at an equal footing.

“I agree that Pak has no right to keep India out of Afghanistan but we will do so anyway due to encirclement fears.”

Therefore India will do what it needs to do to untangle any knot that Pakistan tries to tie. The problem is this – Pakistan is facing a financial abyss. It will not be able to keep up a proxy game for too long. Things cost a lot of money. Pak army has lost its investments heavily due to American presence in the region. Any prolonged American presence will only weaken Pakistan further. And do not trust Iran much. They are a Shia nation, while Pakistan is aligned towards their nemesis, Saudi Arabia. Once they achieve their nukes, they might start flexing their muscles and the Shia bomb might face the Sunni bomb. Pak military might get away fooling the Americans. But Iranians and Afghans are local. They can smell the rot much better and respond to it. For all you know alliances can shift in the region. A frustrated US might work through Israel to turn Iran against Pakistan using the Shia vs Sunni animosity which even predates Hindu versus Muslim animosity. A lot is at stake for Pakistan. Attempt must be made to reconcile with India soon. India is always willing to go along if Pakistan agrees. Contempt is clouding the eyes. Hope wisdom prevails. News reaching home is not good. See this one:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/04/19/pak-team- returning-without-money.html

It is the sign of times. If Pakistan wants to grow economically, it needs to lay down its war mongering strategy and work for peace. Blaming others will not help. Without money, nothing can be controlled or sustained. Things can easily break out of control. Hope your generals think about it and see the light.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Singh,

For Pakistan, 1948, 1965, Kargil are wars of retaliation for India’s usurping of Muslim-majority Kashmir along with Hyderabad, Junagadh, Gurduspur et al. The province in chokehold comment was about Kashmir not Balochistan. I am sure you disagree but this is our belief. Yes, I understand India will do what it can to enter Afghanistan. We understand each other on this front.
I am an advocate of not seeing everything through the Kashmiri prism. My basic point is Pakistan won’t make peace to a Versaile treaty type arrangement with India. For peace to prevail, the two countries should agree to a regional plebiscite in Kashmir. There may even be room for an independent albeit truncated Kashmir.
This is the only just way out.

At the moment, Pakistan is trying to improve relations with Iran now that India had decidedly moved into the American camp vis-a-vis Iran. The last thing we need is a Saudi/Iran sectarian contest played out on our soil.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “For Pakistan, 1948, 1965, Kargil are wars of retaliation for India’s usurping of Muslim-majority Kashmir along with Hyderabad, Junagadh, Gurduspur et al.”

India did not usurp Kashmir. That is the thing I want you to understand. You should be open minded enough to know exactly what happened. India did march into Hyderabad, Goa etc. Pakistan did not march its military into Kashmir. May be it should have. It sent in its tribesmen from NWFP. They did not complete the job and engaged in loot and plunder. This is a well known historic fact. This is not from an Indian source. Had they not done that, it is possible that Kashmiris will be fighting Pakistan’s military today instead of India’s. And Kashmir’ king ran to India and signed an instrument of accession. Whether anyone agrees or not, as per UN charter, he was the official head of state at that time. What he signed is official. India would not have helped him if he had not signed that piece of official acceptance. Then as per the UN charter, India had every right to drive off tribals who were engaged in causing civil strife. India did not invade. Kashmir had become an Indian territory and it was driving off outsiders. This is the Indian perspective. And Pakistan then sent its military in. It was India that took the case to the UN. And it was Pakistan that fought hard and removed the independence clause. And it was Pakistan which refused to accept the UN directive to remove all its men from Kashmir. And the resolution is still waiting for Pakistan to follow the international edict. May be if Pakistan had done it at that time, it would have the moral right to accuse India of not following the UN directives. By creating a stalemate, Pakistan complicated the issue more.

India had given an autonomous state to Kashmir. Pakistan simply took all of Azad Kashmir and has populated it with Punjabis and Pathans. It has given piece of Kashmir to China. It has built Karakoram highway through a disputed territory. Pakistan knew that in 1948, if a UN plebiscite had been held, the people would have voted en masse against joining it. A condition had to be created where the people had to be turned against India. In 1965 it tried that unsuccessfully. In 1989, finally after gaining experience in proxy war, it has managed to alienate Kashmir from India.

However, the equations have changed. For India, Kashmir issue has become more complex due to the China factor. And China’s open invasion of Tibet, turning Nepal into a Maoist nation, sustaining Burma under a military junta etc have made India’s priorities very different. Kashmir now is a geo-strategic point. India is unable to back off from it. Pakistan is trying to push India out of Afghanistan and Kashmir. India has realized that Pakistan is facing an internal collapse and extremely weakened economy. The grip is loosening. And India is unwilling to lose its geo-strategic gain to a weak opponent.

If Pakistan collapses into a civil war or fundamentalists take over Pakistan, India has to be prepared to face the situation. Letting Kashmir go at this juncture will be suicidal for India. It is expanding its economy and infrastructure. It would be foolish to give up a territory for the sake of it. Pakistan’s justification has become emotional, while India’s reason is from geo-strategic rational. See how close Kashmir is to Afghanistan.

Nukes or not, Pakistan will not be able to wrest Kashmir from India anymore. Its terrorism based policy has already backfired on it and has bled the nation’s resources. Since it has accepted the separation of Bangladesh, there is no option for Pakistan to accept Kashmir as it is. You have said that independence is all right for Pakistanis. This means, it will help score a point against India and it is really not about Kashmir joining Pakistan anymore. Pakistan has to prove to itself and the world that it can govern itself as a nation first. Adding more territory at this time will only add to the woes.

If Pakistan had captured an Indian territory, I can bet it will do everything to chest thump itself as a victory against India. For Indians, creation of Pakistan itself is similar to what Pakistanis feel about Kashmir. A province has been taken away from us, our people evicted from there and turned against us. And all this is for some other power’s comfort. But we have learned to accept it and have moved on. I guess Pakistan will have to do the same. There is no way Pakistan will be able to wrest Kashmir from India, by force or otherwise. It has become like a cricket match. Defeat is not an option.

For us, if Pakistan is not willing to normalize relations, it is fine. We will keep the tension alive and you know who will bleed and fall. It is time to think wisely and focus on you welfare.

The province in chokehold comment was about Kashmir not Balochistan. I am sure you disagree but this is our belief. Yes, I understand India will do what it can to enter Afghanistan. We understand each other on this front.
I am an advocate of not seeing everything through the Kashmiri prism. My basic point is Pakistan won’t make peace to a Versaile treaty type arrangement with India. For peace to prevail, the two countries should agree to a regional plebiscite in Kashmir. There may even be room for an independent albeit truncated Kashmir.
This is the only just way out.”

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoibo: “The province in chokehold comment was about Kashmir not Balochistan. I am sure you disagree but this is our belief.”

Kashmir is no longer a province of Pakistan. And Pakistan is no longer a part of Hindustan. That is the reality today. There is no use regretting it.

“Yes, I understand India will do what it can to enter Afghanistan. We understand each other on this front.”

India will be a normal neighbor, if Pakistan understands the reality and tries to normalize its relations with India. And I guess Afghans are not eager to go along with Pakistan either. They saw what Pakistan did with the creation of the Taliban. If the Americans leave, one never knows, Afghans might launch against Pakistan to save themselves from proxy methods used by Pakistan.

“I am an advocate of not seeing everything through the Kashmiri prism. My basic point is Pakistan won’t make peace to a Versaile treaty type arrangement with India. For peace to prevail, the two countries should agree to a regional plebiscite in Kashmir. There may even be room for an independent albeit truncated Kashmir. This is the only just way out.”

India is unable to trust Pakistan. Its activities over the years have created such a negative impression. Now even the Americans are realizing the duplicitous nature of Pakistan’s power controllers. When that is the case, there is no guarantee that settling the Kashmir issue will bring peace to the region. Pakistan has multiple groups with different agendas. Each one wants to dictate terms on foreign policy. There is no guarantee for India that peace will return if Kashmir is settled. With China so close, India will not lower its guard. Therefore this stalemate will continue. From our side, there are only two options left – Pakistan accepts the reality and decides to normalize its relations with India in order to focus on progress; or Pakistan drains itself in its efforts to take on an economically stronger India and falls apart in that process. Hope the latter does not happen. But we saw Yugoslavia undergo that phenomenon. An angered America might trigger that. It will not want China to move into the region after it leaves. So it will leave mines before it vacates and those mines are preventing China from entering. And it will work out in India’s favor as well. The US will not want Iran, Pakistan, China collusion in the region. Neither does India. So Pakistan’s objectives need to change for its own good.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo,

I must confess I have been following your discussions here with others but not too regularly because I really thought much of the exercise was futille seeking a fairy tale ending. My opinion only and nothing personal.

However, you have mentioned about a regional plebiscite in Kashmir? What exactly does that mean? Could you please elaborate. Also, I presume you know the Indian standpoint on why the Plebiscite did not take place originally. What is your take on that.

Coming to Balochistan – for the last two years Rehman Mallik and others have been making loud pronouncements of exposing India’s hand there…….so far squat exposures have been made. Once he even said that he had given proof to the US which that country flatly denied immediately. My point is, just by repeating Balochistan and Indian involvement at frequent intervals without any further elaboration is meaningless in itself. It may be good for domestic consumption but otherwise does not cut any ice with anyone.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

kpsingh01:”In this situation, if I were to device a way out, I’d simply section it off into smaller countries – Pashtun majority region in the South and other ethnic states in the North. There is no way these guys will ever work together. There is no glue that will hold them anymore”.

I have great respect for all your comments, but on this one, I beg to differ. The division of a culturally homogenous state has always resulted in more choas than stability and Division of India is itself is a prime example. The division based on short term political objectives (using religion in this case) while denying the long and historical similarties will always blow out into a perpetual cultural conflict. The side which demands division and when it gets little of its demands (in fact there is virtually no limits to their demands) will push itself into extreme hatred and utter contempt of the other, strives to be “the other”, just like pakistan is trying to be the “unIndia” and anything culturally closer to India is abhorred. (like pakistani courts debarring basant celebrations and kite flying bcoz its unislamic!).

If you think this is just south Asian phenomenon, look at the division of yugosllavia in 90′s, it led to smaller independent mafia and unruly states that are now a cancer inside the heart of europe.

Even if we attempt to divide Afghanistan based on your conjecture, it would result in one more repeated failed phenomenon of India-Pakistan split. Moreover, with this division the taliban will be even more emboldened as they now have a state which we prematurely given to them without a fight, and the taliban will advance their insurgency against new non-pashtun afghanistan. Remember taliban are not geographical entity as Pashtoons are, and so they will not stop even if we hand over pushtoon part of afghanistan.
The non-pushtoon part of Afghanistan that we created would be less aggressive and hopefully focusses on development and is more defensive (a replica of India) into pushing itself to crass adventurism.
Emboldened by the peaceful,controlled and a client site along its western borders, Pakistan with its so called “Jihad” policy in kashmir (and non-pushtun afghanistan) resorts to subversion with the entire region embroiled in conflict.
May be your thoughts are bubbled out of the hope that we could atleast save the part of Afghanistan which is atleast not conjoined to pakistan. But a Pakistan without change in its psychology will see the peaceful and controlled western borders as only an oppurtunity to display more belligerence against India. And yes a Afghanistan which is divided and its pushtoon part which becomes an extended province of pakistan will probably result in baloch and pushtoon insurgencies getting even more stronger and eventually result in a disintegrated pakistan (or with weak Cengral Government whose writ does not go beyond its citie’s borders).

One also needs to realize that the reason Pakistan’s obsession to keep Afghanistan in low equilibrium is to avoid raising objections regarding Durand Line, which expired in 1995, by the Afghans. This they achieved by virtually destroying a perfectly good state experimenting with socialist politics in 70′s. Now by dividing we will do exactly what pakistan longs for as even now the non-pushtoons too demand dismantling of durand line which they(pakistanis) incidentally fear would automatically pushes their western boder furthurn close to peshawar.

Regarding the weakening of Pakistan’e economy which is evident all over the Internet, I see that even people like shoaibo are just providing a lip service and as just a passing phrase in their comments which I think is the ultimate Geopolitical event which will shape south Asian politics.
I have provided a link in my previous post about how in 1992 Pakistan economy was 1/5th of Indian econoy, it dropped close to 1/10th now and probably will drop furthur to 1/20th in 15 years(2025), its remarkable how a country can drop its influence by 1/4th against its perceived enemy in a matter of three and half decades and still claim victory!

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Shoaibo said:

> It is easy for you to say India is not a threat but from our perspective, you have one of our provinces in a chokehold.

KP Singh said:

> Which one? If you are indicating Balochistan, you need to provide concrete evidence.

LOL – I realised at once he meant Kashmir. I think I’ve managed to get into their skin and understand the Pakistani viewpoint after all!

Shoaib, if we want to get to a better place, we need imaginative thinking and courage. Remaining fixated on past issues and past positions (whether just or unjust) will not help. If it helps to focus the mind, imagine that the hawks in India are chuckling and waiting out Pakistan’s slide to irrelevance. A Versailles-style treaty, humiliating as it is, may be the only one on the table in a few years.

Of all of Pakistan’s problems (the economy, insurgency, terrorism, fundamentalism, etc.) the relationship with India is actually the easiest to fix. What is India demanding after all? There is only one Indian demand – that Pakistan should credibly renounce violence against India. That’s it. India is not even asking Pakistan to drop its claims to Kashmir! Do continue the struggle through talks, discussions and lobbying. Just no violence please.

Is this really so hard?

Think of the benefits of “permanent peace” (the phrase being heard these days). At the cost of managing the dashed expectations of some jihadis, Pakistan will gain a huge reprieve in terms of no longer having to defend against an enemy with an unmatchable defence budget. And will gain the benefits of a generous (perhaps silly and sentimental) neighbour that will give and keep on giving. All those North Indian Punjabis and Sindhis will sell the rest of us Indians out in their desire to rehabilitate their prodigal brothers ;-).

Once you patch up with India, the rest of your problems can be gradually brought under control. They’re not easy to solve (feudalism and fundamentalism are particularly hard to uproot), but you will no longer be staring at disaster. And you will have a neighbour that will pull out all the stops to help you.

For good measure, the Kashmir issue may also be solved peacefully in the future, once trust has been established.

It just needs courage on the part of Pakistan. India has a single and very modest demand that really shouldn’t be so hard for a country to agree to. Any civilised country would take the renunciation of violence as a given.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

KP Singh said:

> News reaching home is not good. See this one:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/04/19/pak-team- returning-without-money.html

Not to worry, KP. Pakistan has just successfully tested another nuclear-capable missile: http://bit.ly/exHZ6h

Who needs the IMF, eh? Those nuclear weapons can protect against any threat, even economic collapse.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I just realised it will take even more courage than I thought on the part of Pakistan to make peace with India.

In war and hostility, Pakistan continues to appear like India’s equal (although this is unsustainable). In peace, Pakistan will be immediately seen as a pygmy in relation to India. That’s going to be hard to swallow for those brought up on an ideology of cultural superiority, even harder than the end of the Kashmir dream or the earlier loss of East Pakistan. Pity where false pride will lead a nation.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

There is a need of very sensible and realistic approach. America should learn from its past history of war and adopt the methods which are acceptable for world community.

Posted by FarrukhSaeed | Report as abusive

I think Pakistan has gone beyond the stage of reconciliation with its neighbors. I am sure there are people there who would like to settle down and move on. But they would face the barrel of the Jihadi gun and will be silenced out of existence. Look at their blasphemy law issue. Their government back tracked on the amendment to that law fearing reprisals from fundamentalist groups. If they decide to make an honest peace initiative with India, they get to face the wrath of the same groups. Reconciling with India and amending the blasphemy law have similar impact on the fundamentalist’s psyche. They may not be winning popular vote. But they control all the aspects of power. I guess Musharraf lost his popularity the moment he was seen reconciling with India on Kashmir issue. The fundamentalists want an enemy at all costs and an issue to keep that enemy alive. Any thaw in the relations between the people are reset with Mumbai style attack. If they get Kashmir, they are going to be in a shock and will lose their agenda, which is really to control Pakistan from within. They will need to come up with another agenda very quickly to replace the current one. Intensity is important. Though the average Pakistani might be all right with some settlement, the Jihadi groups will need something to hold on to. In the past Pak military nurtured them and controlled them. Now they have infiltrated the system and things have turned the other way around. And the Jihadis have time on their hand.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

sensiblepatriot: “The division of a culturally homogenous state has always resulted in more choas than stability and Division of India is itself is a prime example.”

I appreciate your views. Let me provide my reasons here.
Each case is unique. Though there are similarities, there are big differences as well. Let me go through some of them here,

1. Afghanistan is not culturally homogeneous. There is no such thing as Afghan, just like there is no such thing as Indian or European. From a distance, things appear homogeneous. At close proximity, Afghanistan is a region shared by communities with strong ethnic background and historic rivalry. You have the Kazhaks, Tajiks, Uzbeks, Kyrghyz, Pashtuns, Hazaras, and a very small percentage of others including Sikhs, Hindus etc. Afghanistan was not founded on religion. It has been a region changing hands many times in history. Ethnic divisions are very deep. They have been at loggerheads with each other for a very long time.

2. Afghanistan’s geography is another key factor. Most of it is harsh with tall peaks and dry valleys. Life is hard. There are some green patches like the Helmand valley, Bamiyan etc. Such an environment breeds fierceness. People are reactive and impulsive in nature. Violence is the easiest way to make gains. The region suffers from extremes of weather. Frustration level can be very high. The culture, as a result is hostile in nature. It breeds warriors more than any other profession. They have evolved raiding others due to facing difficult times at home.

3. Afghanistan is at the cross roads where empires met. As a result, it has been a battle field for many empires, both historic and at present. This is not going to change any time soon. New powers are emerging and the equation does not change.

If you compare Yugoslavia, there are lot of similarities. That place too was at the cross roads where the Austro-Hungarian, Turkish, Greek, Persian empires clashed. It resulted in a mix of ethnic and religious groups that built up historic rivalry. People are volatile there too, as a result. It had been a war zone. The first world war was triggered by an assassination that happened in Serajivo.

Plants will never grow on a road where vehicles are constantly moving. Afghanistan and Yugoslavia are more like roads than parks. They get trampled upon all the time. To prevent horses from running over them, barriers have to be set. Otherwise, new horses will replace old ones and the situation will never change. Barriers will change these roads into buildings that are difficult to pass through.

If you look at India, it is not like a road. It is a habitable place. Civilizations can take root there and have taken root before. Culture, as a result is tolerant and can help build a nation.

Pakistan too is a cross road, especially the NWFP and Punjab regions. It is more of a gate way into the sub-continent. Again raiders trampled through the gate way periodically, trampling upon everything on their paths. If you look at Southern part of Pakistan, it is more hospitable. But it is too close to the gate way.

Even if India is culturally and otherwise, extremely diverse, it is a settled civilization. Invasions stop there and people settle down into governing. Those who came in became Indians themselves. It is easy to build cohesiveness amongst the masses in a place like this, where people are mostly pacifist in nature.

In places like Afghanistan, pacifism does not exist. Belligerence fueled by religion makes it very hard for people to settle down. It makes them extremely emotional in nature.

The division of Pakistan from India had led South Asia to the brink of nuclear confrontation. But it has been fueled by global power rivalry more than anything else. You do not see this antagonism with Bangladesh for example. It is the nature of the people that matters.

You can stay united or divided. It all depends upon who it applies to. A divided Yugoslavia seems to have benefited the people of different ethnic and religious groups in that region. There are no more empires there clashing. Everyone has settled. In the case of India, staying united has created a European union like system and has turned people’s attention towards the benefits of progress. In the case of Afghanistan, it has to change from being the war zone of powers. It can only happen by division into smaller units. Such a division makes natural barriers for regional and global powers.

They will clash at the beginning with each other, but they can be contained much quicker. Afghanistan is not able to settle into peace because of Pakistan. That is why the US policy has clubbed them together. They understand the situation. Pakistan is controlling the place because of fear of Pashtun secession if Afghanistan settles.

Pakistan will have to face Pashtun independence at some point in time. So far they have managed to divert them towards Jihad and Kashmir. But US presence has caused a blow back. A weakened Pakistan will find it very hard to contain the Pashtuns. That is why they want the US to leave the region at the earliest. Otherwise they see their own arm being cut off. They fear India is siting in Afghanistan facilitating such a division.

If Pashtuns separate into their own nation, it can help keep Pakistan at bay and China’s regional goals will be offset. And China will try to keep Pakistan happy by aligning against the Pashtuns, which can be a dangerous game. Thus a balance will be achieved where ethnic groups will stand up to each other and peace prevail because of that balance. In this part of the world, violence has to be balanced by violence. That is the unfortunate thing. But it will work.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Ganesh:”There is only one Indian demand – that Pakistan should credibly renounce violence against India”.
Bingo! my point too exactly! This is one policy that can do world of good for pakistan. But I would put that as Anti-India policy rather than just voilence, As we know pakistan tries to hurt us even using other ways too.
1.proxy voilence.
2.Guarding itself after undertaking bellegerence under the threat of Nuclear war or comfort of big powers.
3.Use of other methods like dumping fake currency, weapons and drugs.
The Fake currency is snowballed into such a big issue that India for the first time may complain in International forums.
http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes. com/2010-11-16/india/28213134_1_fake-ind ian-currency-ficn-currency-notes
But that change in policy is probably difficult given the nature of power politics in pakistan atleast in the short to medium term.

Ganesh:”will gain the benefits of a generous (perhaps silly and sentimental) neighbour that will give and keep on giving. All those North Indian Punjabis and Sindhis will sell the rest of us Indians out in their desire to rehabilitate their prodigal brothers”.
I cant recall who, but somebody from pakistan in the forum has put forward his opinion that for South Indians, kashmir doesn’t matter.
But having read my own country for atleast last 15 years, I can see a unremarkable change that lately south Indians seems to be more hawkish against pakistan than North Indians themselves, so much so that Manmohan singh’s statement that “If he could normalize relations with pakistan, he considers the job well done” was not well taken by either Chidambaram,Antony or former security advisor Narayanan. If fact during the cricket diplomacy many from south were aghast at some punjabis uncalled sentimentalism as strange to their charecter.

A young security journalist was too frustrated by this unreasonable warth that he put – “security advisor M K Narayanan had indicated once to his American interlocutors, and that too, in the presence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, that persons living in south of Vindyas were better placed to frame India’s policy towards Pakistan”.

http://indiandefencereview.com/geopoliti cs/Misreading-Pakistan.html
Finally, I believe there are stronger reasons why more hawkish security experts come from South.
1.North may be the bulwark of paksitan where huge numbers join the army, south is the location of India’s most of the Defence labs and Industries. Strategic experts chose this location because of the strategic security it provides due to the distance from pak and china.

2.Devoid of cultural roots with pakistani punjabis, they see little reason in resetting the relations with which they see as backward country.

3.Again because of Strategic reasons, India spent most of the money in south which resulted in better development structures and whose large educated middle classes compare themselves with either ASEAN or China. While with the relative parity in development with pakistanis, north Indians may not be show as exuberance about the growing gap with pakistan.In fact, a disproportionate number of southerners to North Indians are Netizens.

4.The Sea change attitude also comes from success of IT which mostly happened in south, turning Southerner’s to grow a little arrogance and a tint of hubris.

5.Low Muslim population (with exception of small kerala) has erupted raw emotions against Pakistanis, where as presence of large number of muslims in north and existence of BJP which served as emotional security for North. Not surprisingly, middle class-educated-Netizen is most xenophobic about the threat from pakistan. Relatively high life styles also tend to aggrevate this xenophobia.

6.Some security experts fear that just as I.K. Gujral has rolled up the hard earned extensive spy network in pakistan, Manmohan would do something like that just as he admitted to unreasonable acceptence of baluch insurgency due to India’s hand at sharm-el-sheik.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Dara,

Your skepticism is understandable. It just feels good to dream.

Kashmiris have been consistent in only one thing: their desire for independence.
I think Pakistan should give up AJK and India should give up the valley for a fully independent Kashmir. Pakistan keeps GB, India keeps the rest. LOC should be internationalized. Despite Pakistani concerns about water, India has been fairly decent on this front. Water treaties should be solidified. A no-war pact should be signed like Egypt and Israel. Everyone pays a price for peace.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

kp, Although I see some reason to have More afghanistan’s than one we have it now.
My question is How could a pushtoon country dominated by Taliban which runs along pakistan’s western borders providing security to it(pakistan) cannot be a lackey and client to pakistan again?
If it becomes then, pakistan will use it against us in Training jihadis just as it did in the past.

2. Taliban which is not an Geographic entity but an idelogical entity may not stop at only pushtoon country, it may not extend to japan but can extend atleast to non-pushtoon afghan provinces.

3. Are we not falling to American thought process? we both know it is pakistan, Pakistan which is the problem. (pakistani state) No matter what we experiment with afghanistan, unless we solve the problem of pakistan (not problems of pakistan but the problem which is pakistan :-) )we will not solve the regions issue, don’t you think so?

I loved your way of writing and kindly focus what’s your thoughts are on above points too. wont mind even if others put it what they think. Have a nice day.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: I think Pakistan should give up AJK and India should give up the valley for a fully independent Kashmir. Pakistan keeps GB, India keeps the rest. LOC should be internationalized.

This would probably is the most agreeable line for most of the Indians.
1.No one would lose their strategic areas.
2.No one would lose their terrotories (Independence within their national context)
3.LOC as border no dilution of sovereignty for any region.
and
.
.
.
4. Finally PEACE.
Aaaah… I can fairly say most of the Indians may accept this formula, but how many are there with your opinion in the present state of pakistan.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

SP, perhaps you misunderstood. I am suggesting a small fully independent and sovereign state comprised of AJK and Kashmiri valley. Kashmiris are a party to this all you know. The remaining LOC would be internationalized. India would ‘give away’ the kashmir valley which absolutely detests India and Pakistan would give up ‘AJK’ to make up a new small country of Kashmir. Pakistan would not get “indian” territory, India would not get “pakistani” territory. kashmiris would get real independence for their sacrifice. mutually assured destruction is averted.

I am sure I am back in bad books now. Such is the price for difference of opinion.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “Kashmiris have been consistent in only one thing: their desire for independence.”

I beg to disagree here. Kashmiris have been consistent in seeking a peaceful life. Their desire for independence is of recent origin. This is because they are seeking a way to live in peace and independence seems to be an option that gives them that hope.

Until 1988, Kashmiris were all right and did not demand independence. They had settled down with the Indian union. The Indian political system was corrupted by the Indira Gandhi dynasty. Over about two decades the lady had let the system rot all across the country. She would dismiss elected state governments and install governor’s rule. Her party engaged in rigging elections everywhere. She died in 1984, but the legacy took time to lose momentum. In Kashmir elections, the polls were rigged and the youth protested it. This happens in other parts of the country as well. Usually they send in Central Reserve Police who club everything in their sight, fire tear gas and sometimes bullets to suppress the protesters. In Kashmir, the government too had settled down the same routine it applied in other parts of the country. When the CRPF followed their usual practice, they were in for a shock. They found that plain clothed people in the crowd could strike them back and appeared very professionally trained. On top of that, the protesters could drive the police off and put them on the defensive. This had never happened before in Kashmir or anywhere else. That is when the realization came that those who were counter attacking were not ordinary, run off the mill, college students. These men seemed determined and had the necessary training to take on a uniformed policeman. And it was soon apparent that many who waged the attack looked different from the locals. Before they could organize themselves and try to stem the problem, they found that an offensive had begun. Men trained like professional soldiers, but disguised like locals were taking out police and special police personnel like ducks. The government reacted to this by bringing in more specialized units like Border Security force and still could not contain it. They realized that they were facing insurgents in the valley. And it was very similar or even more lethal than the ones Indian security forces were facing in the North Eastern states. Army had to be rolled into the valley. For almost 15 years, the tide could not be stemmed. Now they began to see Arabs, Pashtuns, Chechens, Punjabis, Kashmiris, sometimes European men take out professionally trained soldiers in a highly co-ordinated attack. Kashmir had become a war zone. Indian military moved in and counter insurgency measures became effective. This means curfews, shoot at sight orders, sudden search, arrests without warrants, shoot outs killing anyone who can be suspected, brutal interrogations, deaths, disappearances etc became the norm. Any place that comes under a military operation is no exception to this. And this brutal treatment turned the Kashmiris away from India. That was the aim – to keep the pressure on the Indian military and it would begin to fumble and falter, being unable to differentiate between locals and militants. It was only a matter of time. A generation of young Kashmiris simply grew up in the middle of all this. They seldom saw peace. They were caught in the cross fire between Indian soldiers and Pakistan sponsored militants. One can protest against an establishment like the military. But how can they protest against the militants who were killing off anyone who did not want to side with them? And so the tide turned against India.
Therefore I do not buy the theory that Kashmiris always wanted independence. There are different perspectives there. Some want to join Pakistan. Some want to go with India. Some want neither.

The bottom line is this – Pakistanis want to score a point at India. This is possible if Kashmir at least becomes independent. And we are only talking about Indian held Kashmir here. No Pakistani wants to raise the question of AK.

A lot of water has flowed under the bridge. Now we have to wait for another generation of Kashmiris to grow up watching peace, which has returned to the valley. They are seeing the developments inside Pakistan. Swat is very close to Kashmir. They do not want the Taliban to move in, which can happen very quickly if they become independent. Kashmir is much like Afghanistan. Every power in the region wants to control it. China is looking at it. Pakistan is. And India is holding it. It has nothing to do with Muslims. Kashmir is an extremely geo-strategic region. India does not want to commit a mistake at this time.

Desire for freedom is very different for desire for independence. People want to be free within a system. They want rights and justice. They want fairness. That is different from being independent. Pakistan became independent too. Do its citizens have the freedom that an Indian have? In India one does not get sentenced to death for blasphemy. China is an independent nation too. Do its citizens have freedom. No way. The two cannot be confused. What Kashmirs desire are freedom and rights and India is obligated to provide them that. Unfortunately it is difficult to guarantee that considering the conditions of the times. So if Pakistan gives up its Kashmir obsession, an average Kashmiri can achieve his freedom and rights. India will be able to provide that to him. It did before 1988. Jihad changed the equation. And it is burning Pakistan itself.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo said:

> India would ‘give away’ the kashmir valley [...] and Pakistan would give up ‘AJK’ to make up a new small country of Kashmir. Pakistan would not get “indian” territory, India would not get “pakistani” territory. kashmiris would get real independence [...]
> I am sure I am back in bad books now.

On the contrary, that is a reasonable position to aspire for, and we may indeed get there one day, but the logistics and intermediate steps will need to be worked out. You will probably be in the bad books of Pakistanis for saying this :-). I don’t think Indians are going to assail you for proposing such a compromise. It’s a refreshing change from “Give us Kashmir”.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

SensiblePatriot,

I largely agree with what you say about South Indian attitudes (I am one, after all) except for this comment:

> 5.Low Muslim population (with exception of small kerala) has erupted raw emotions against Pakistanis, where as presence of large number of muslims in north and existence of BJP which served as emotional security for North.

On the contrary, Muslims in South India are much better integrated with their neighbours than in the North, to the possible contempt of the Islamists who believe in maintaining “distance” from infidels to uphold the purity of Islam. I’m not an expert on Kerala, and I believe there have been instances of Hindu-Muslim violence there as well as a rising tide of Islamism. Also, Karnataka seems to be just behind Gujarat in anti-Muslim sentiment. Andhra seems to have become better. Hyderabad in the seventies was known for Hindu-Muslim riots, but that seems to have settled down now. Tamil Nadu has the best record of the four big states. Think AR Rahman and Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. Dr Kalam has read the Bhagavad Gita and the Tamil work Thirukural. In my childhood, my extended family in Madurai had a family tailor who was Muslim but used to sing Carnatic music with all its Hindu religious compositions. A Tamil Muslim once told my father somewhat complainingly that North Indian Muslims were more aggressive because they ate more meat! There is a reason why the South is more peaceful – better integration and adjustment.

So I believe the South Indian’s lack of emotional attachment to Pakistan is purely because of cultural distance and absence of shared history. I don’t believe it has anything to do with anti-Muslim feeling. If anything, that seems to be higher in the North.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “I am suggesting a small fully independent and sovereign state comprised of AJK and Kashmiri valley. Kashmiris are a party to this all you know. The remaining LOC would be internationalized. India would ‘give away’ the kashmir valley which absolutely detests India and Pakistan would give up ‘AJK’ to make up a new small country of Kashmir. Pakistan would not get “indian” territory, India would not get “pakistani” territory. kashmiris would get real independence for their sacrifice. mutually assured destruction is averted.”

That is what the Dogra king wanted in 1947 – an independent state. In due course, Kashmiris could have risen and thrown him out of power and remained independent.

I think this will be the best solution for all parties with face saving measures for each side. But in reality, it will not be allowed. There are conservative groups inside both India and Pakistan that would oppose such a move. Any political party that settles for this solution will be writing its death sentence. Only someone as charismatic as Gandhi or Nehru would have had the power to make such decisions. Anyone else is an ordinary mortal and will be treated as such. In Pakistan, there is a sizable population that sees Kashmir as an integral part of Pakistan. In fact you yourself has claimed earlier that India took away Kashmir, a province of Pakistan.

But anything is possible. Countries became independent in the past when the ruling powers went broke. The British empire ended fast because of WW II. Soviet empire collapsed because of economy and that led to the liberation of many independent states. In the case of Tibet and Kashmir, the two powers holding them are gaining by the day. So in the near future, I do not see Kashmir’s independence becoming a reality. But it is a great ideal to have.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

There are conservative groups inside both India and Pakistan that would oppose such a move.
Posted by KPSingh01
=

Being opposed to revising borders, being opposed to ceding territory in Kashmir is “conservative” opinion in India? Am I missing some thing here? Unless these things are said as pleasantried to engage in conversations in anonymous blogs, it doesn’t make sense.

Barely to evict a few mountains, youngsters from all across India , from Nagas, South Indians, gave up their lives in 1999.

When and how did this become “conservative” opionion? Do other Indians agree with this! Sounds bizarre to me.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Any political party that settles for this solution will be writing its death sentence.

… Yes, classical game theory for politicians on both sides. Who cares about a potential civilizational catastrophe so long as I get re-elected? However, there is no shame is regular people talking about such an ideal — if it makes us think outside the constraints of mutual animosity.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “Kashmiris have been consistent in only one thing: their desire for independence.”

I beg to disagree here. Kashmiris have been consistent in seeking a peaceful life.

…. Disagreement is fine. I had a longer timeline in mind… Kashmiris wanted freedom from Mughals, British in 1931, India, Pakistan etc…

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

There are several indpendent small countries are ready to be born out of “Pakistan:

This “Pakistani” author is more in touch with reality:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp  ?page=2011\04\20\story_20-4-2011_pg3_6

The debate on the Balochistan question has increasingly become exceptionally complex. However, there are a few discernible constants. First, that the armed forces and intelligence agencies of Pakistan are abducting, torturing and murdering the Baloch every day. Second, the settlers in Balochistan are being targeted. Third, there is not enough candid discussion on the Baloch question. As regards the last point, there is now some talk of there not being enough talk about Balochistan.

A dangerously unnerving question is whether any attempt to reconcile the Baloch now is a case of too little, too late?

[[ A blasphemously horrifying question is did the Baloch, the Sindhi, the Hazara, the Seraiki, etc, get a fair deal in the beginning? ]]]

Another frightening question is, was Balochistan occupied under coercion on March 27, 1948 and compelled to join Pakistan? In similar vein, was the Two Nation theory a political stratagem, which may or may not have been effective tactically then, but needs to be revisited now? Can religion alone be sufficient basis to constitute a nation? Is there a shared Pakistani identity outside of the Cricket World Cup? Is there a rational historical basis for Urdu to be our national language? What is the number of civilian murders that are acceptable in ostensibly preserving national integrity? Should a transparent plebiscite be held in Balochistan regarding secession?

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “I had a longer timeline in mind… Kashmiris wanted freedom from Mughals, British in 1931, India, Pakistan etc”

My neighbors want to be independent too. They want their family to be free so that they don’t get to pay taxes to the government. They have farmland and wells. They have all their needs met. I am sure they have been longing for independence from the times of great emperors. But unfortunately they end up sharing the territory with others and have to be a part of the surrounding.

Nations have been carved out by various means. How many respect the Durand line? In fact it expired in 1993. Pashtuns do not have to respect that line anymore. That border is irrelevant today. But Pakistan can go to war to protect the area East of that line if it is violated.
All people have the right to dream of independence and freedom. But nation states will only go by their interests. And if they try to rebel their way out of it by violent means, the state will resist it even more. Imagine Hawaii or Texas deciding to secede from the American Union today. Texas was a separate country once. Lousiana was purchased from the French. May be Mexico can start a Jihad to liberate Albuquerque. Time to move on. My community has been oppressed many times in the past as well, starting from Mughal times. Lahore was the capital of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. I’d like it returned to the Sikhs as well. Our forefathers were driven out of Punjab. Can I start seeking all the lost territory again? Where do we draw the line?

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “there is no shame is regular people talking about such an ideal — if it makes us think outside the constraints of mutual animosity.”

No disagreement there. Everyone should live in peace and have equal opportunities. Hope that dream materializes some day.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

sensiblepatriot: “My question is How could a pushtoon country dominated by Taliban which runs along pakistan’s western borders providing security to it(pakistan) cannot be a lackey and client to pakistan again?
If it becomes then, pakistan will use it against us in Training jihadis just as it did in the past.”

Pashtuns are very proud people do not thump their chests like their Punjabi Muslim counterparts. If there are any people Pakistanis are scared of, it is the Pashtuns. If they want to cut someone down, they will cut them down. There will be no talking or boasting about it. Taliban is Pashtun in name only. They are mostly Pashtun refugees who grew up during the war against the Soviets. They really did not grow up in the Pashtun hinterlands learning their traditional value systems. They are of Pashtun origin, but shaped in the Madrasas of Pakistan and controlled by the ISI. Real Pashtuns are still inside Afghanistan and Pakistan’s lawless NWFP. Pakistan cannot control the real Pashtuns. It is they the Pakistani strategists are worried about. They are wondering if India is influencing their thought process or not by engaging in construction activities and acting like a friend. They are the ones who can make the Durand line irrelevant and declare it part of their land. And they are fiercely loyal to their own people when it comes to others. They have watched the duplicitous and double dealing by Pakistan since 2001. Therefore there is a lot to worry for Pakistani strategists. Pashtuns generally do not beg others. They stood up against the Americans when they threatened to bomb them for not handing over Bin Laden. Look at what Pakistan did when the same question was posed to them. Tell me who has the real spine. Surely Taliban has used Pakistani army’s help in gaining control. But Taliban and Pashtun are not exactly the same. One needs to know the difference. Taliban is hard core Sunni Muslim fanatics trained in the Madrasas of Pakistan during the war against the Soviets. Pashtuns have historic traditions and honor codes. A Pashtun will protect an enemy if he surrenders to him. Taliban will behead him. Therein lies the difference.

“2. Taliban which is not an Geographic entity but an idelogical entity may not stop at only pushtoon country, it may not extend to japan but can extend atleast to non-pushtoon afghan provinces.”

Taliban is mostly second generation Pashtun refugees who grew up outside their homeland under the supervision of Pakistan’s Wahabi Madrassas, trained and controlled by Pakistan’s ISI. They are Pashtuns in origin. But they are not Pashtuns in tradition. It is like Obama being an African in origin. And the identity stops there. Taliban has probably splintered up into smaller units. They may or may not stay loyal to Pakistan. Real Pashtuns probably distrust Pakistan based on what has happened so far.

“3. Are we not falling to American thought process? we both know it is pakistan, Pakistan which is the problem. (pakistani state) No matter what we experiment with afghanistan, unless we solve the problem of pakistan (not problems of pakistan but the problem which is pakistan )we will not solve the regions issue, don’t you think so?”

Pakistan is not the problem – its military is. It has become like a cartel. It has a nation at its disposal. It has become the largest landlord in the country. No one can solve the problem of this military. It was created by the British colonial imperialists for their purpose and have been supported and nurtured by them and their succeeding super power. I’d like Britain and the US to learn their lesson here for what they have done to the region and the world. I think Pak military is there for that purpose. Let them figure it out.

I loved your way of writing and kindly focus what’s your thoughts are on above points too. wont mind even if others put it what they think. Have a nice day.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo, dreaming is good. One needs to a dream to achieve anything in life. If you don’t have the courage to dream there is never any achievement. So there’s something we agree on.

Again, an independent Kashmir, in whatever shape or form is a good dream. Let me put a spanner in it – unfortunately. The main problem with any independent Kashmir is what happens thereafter. That poor country will be buffeted from all sides – not just India and Pakistan but also the big players the US, China Russia, Iran you name it. An independent kashmir is in nobody’s interest. Unfortunately countries cannot be carved out on emotional outbursts but on solid interests and legalities.

Its so easy to say Kashmiris hate india! Its easy to buy into a well publicised campaign. 80% voting tells you how much they detest India. Media thrives on hard luck and the gruesome, normality and good news are its enemy.

But coming to my original question, what do you imply by ‘regional’ plebiscite? Who all can vote? Is the next step a plebiscite in all Muslim dominated areas of India – remember our Muslim populations are almost equal? Why is Pakistan so interested in all this? If Pakistan is the protector of all Muslim interests why is it refusing to take in the 25,000 odd people stranded in Bangla Desh since 1971 who wanted to become Pakistani citizens? So what I am getting at is that India represents Muslim interests as much as Pakistan. So its not Kashmir per se for Pakistan. It is the issue of Kashmir that must be kept boiling.

But coming to the larger question, will all this create peace between India and Pakistan? In my opinion not. And no matter how much the Indian PM may talk of dreaming of peace between these two countries there is no scope for it till the ground reality changes in Pakistan. Unless Pakistan becomes a fully functional democracy where the civilian controls the army, as in all democracies, there is no scope. The PA will never allow it. It thrives on its painting an Indian threat and once that threat is removed the PA loses its most unique selling point. Kashmir as an issue is a catalyst, not Kashmiri interests or territory, and must be kept centre stage. Till the basic structure in Pakistan changes, till the military – Jihadi nexus is broken, collectively and individually, peace will be a pipe dream. There may just be transitional periods of relative peace but its an illusion not reality.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

Shoaib:”SP, perhaps you misunderstood. I am suggesting a small fully independent and sovereign state comprised of AJK and Kashmiri”.
I have understood that, when you mentioned it in your previous post,and I only tweaked the Independence part and said it could be allowed under each countrie’s constitutions.
But I would be hardpressed to believe it is possible given the following reasons.I wouldn’t elaborate much though as KP and Netizen have thrown enough light on why its infeasible but suffice it so say for one, Its is extremely hard to convince hawks on both sides especially the one on the pakistani side who have grown up thinking that kashmir will be part of pakistan one day.
two, the Pakistani state is semi-functional state where the power does not reside in one institution like India, but instead it rests on multiple power centres. So convincing everybody is a problem.
three,An independent kashmir even if it is conceived ( from parts of kashmir regions who want to remain independent) is difficult to survive and will be heavily fought for dominance by US,China and other Powers only to aggrevate the problem . The fact that the problem exists is itself is a vindication of this fact.
Finally, Geopolitics are run by cold calculations, Indians do know that the Terrorist Infrastructure cannot be dismantled by pakistan even if it wishes so as it has its own momentum now. See KP’s point when he says Kashmir may be independent but not free. And this gives enough psychological advantage to Islamists who claim that Islam had won yet another victory against, another power (or Infidels, depending on how you perceive India)

Young generation Tamils may find it surprising and even shocked to find that their state (admittedly a minority section though) once fought for seperate country from British rule and not to join India. But now thoroughly entrenched as part of innumerable shades in Indian polity while protecting their culture and why not give kashmiris the same chance (or in your words, why cant pakistan give India the same chance)rather than politics of exclusion based on Identity politics.
Even if we offer Independence, we should both offer enough disincentives at the cost of this Independence (maximum autonomy) so as to discourage them from seceding (India spends alot for the socalled kashmiri exclusion and asking to develop their region with their own taxes not from national exchequer would be enough disincentive in this regard).
well if they want to be Independent, they should atleast behave in a manner similar to Independent state right!

The fact that moderate leaders get gunned down even now for their belief in autonomy under India Consitution is enough to say that they fear for their life as much as their love for Independence.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Gentlemen, Kashmir has to be different because it is different. Durand Line, Tamil Nadu, Balochistan are not contested and disputed internationally. They are an integral character of their respective countries. The Islamists are gaining psychological momentum from resolving kashmir but from NOT resolving it.

My proposal should be cross-checked to the list drawn up by myself and prasad with some reluctant assistance from Singh.

Let’s also consider the penalties for not resolving Kashmir, the prospects are not good for Pakistan, Kashmir or India.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “Durand Line, Tamil Nadu, Balochistan are not contested and disputed internationally.”

Kashmir too is not an international issue. It has been declared as a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan by all parties. It is like water sharing issue between two countries. Only Pakistanis have been claiming it to be an international issue, because they are drumming up for support. If Pakistanis support an independent Kashmir, then they have nothing to do with Kashmir – it is between India and Kashmiri Muslims only. This is much like India supporting Tibetan independence from China. But it is a matter between China and Tibet. One can support many issues from a distance. But it does not become an international issue between two countries. Pakistan has more claims to Bangladesh than Kashmir. Bangladesh was once a Pakistani province and it was separated by Indian influence. And Pakistan should focus on reclaiming that lost territory first before laying its eyes on territories like Kashmir. Pakistan will not do it because the Bengalis will not accept Pakistan as their nation anymore and in the case of Kashmir there is room for it. So independent Kashmir campaign is only a step towards annexing Kashmir to Pakistan by force in the future. And it will happen by sending in hard core Jihadis. Then Pakistan can claim that it is not officially doing anything in Kashmir and those who entered Kashmir and control it are non state actors. Pakistan resembles a wolf that has been salivating about a sheep in possession of a farmer. It has been crying for the freedom for the sheep because the owner beats it periodically. It has been campaigning for freeing the sheep so that it is not owned by anyone. The problem is that everyone knows the wolf’s nature and desire. Such is the reality here.

“They are an integral character of their respective countries.”

No they are not. Kashmir is an obsession with Pakistanis for two reasons – it is a very strategic region; it serves as an act of revenge against India for helping cut East Pakistan off. There is no real love for Kashmiri Muslims. This is much like the love in Pakistanis for the Chinese. It is not love. It is basically venom against India being reflected off these two entities. Pakistan will support anything that goes against India. If Kashmiris can be controlled remotely into taking on India, Pakistanis would love that very much. India considers Kashmir as its integral part and it wants to move on. Pakistan is the only one seeking a settlement, while saying that an independent Kashmir is all right. It is not clear to us what Pakistan wants. Asking for an independent Kashmir is not a settlement for Pakistan. Therefore be clear on what the ulterior motive.

“The Islamists are gaining psychological momentum from resolving kashmir but from NOT resolving it.”

Islamists cannot resolve anything. They can create problems for others, but definitely not solve them.

“My proposal should be cross-checked to the list drawn up by myself and prasad with some reluctant assistance from Singh.”

A lot is at stake for India if it lets Kashmir go now. Timing is not right. Kashmir will turn into another Swat or Afghanistan and it will be sitting next to us. Look at what Afghanistan has done to Pakistan. We do not want to go there. Let us not get emotional. Emotions do not help solve problems.

Let’s also consider the penalties for not resolving Kashmir, the prospects are not good for Pakistan, Kashmir or India.”

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

“Let’s also consider the penalties for not resolving Kashmir, the prospects are not good for Pakistan, Kashmir or India.””

Need to know what resolving Kashmir issue means – independence for Kashmiri Muslims? Joining Pakistan? Eliminate Indian military’s brutality?

From Pakistan’s stand point, there is one of the above three for resolution – join Pakistan. The other two have nothing to do with Pakistan.

I think Pakistan should focus on its issues and not worry about Kashmir. By now it must be clear that violent means like proxy wars, Jihad etc will not work. They have drained Pakistan dearly. “Resolving” Kashmir is not going to change anything for Pakistan. It will not turn into a paradise. It has gone from bad to worse already.

As far India, it cannot be forced by Pakistan into doing things at its bidding – get out of Afghanistan, get out of Kashmir and so on.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shaibo I find your answers disappointing. You seem to be skirting direct questions so shall desist from any further discussion on the subject.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

New independent countries should not be created to alleviate Jihadi Terrorism. Bad idea.

If anything it should be the opposite. Demands backed up by Jihadi Terrorism should be firmly rejected as in the case of Kashmir.

Kuldip Nayyar, who is generally a terrorist lover, wrote a column last year after visiting Srinagar. He wrote fundamentalist Islam has crept into Kashmir.

An “independent” Kashmir will have Srinagar renamed to Jihadabad

We will be facing Jihad from Islamabad and Jihadabad at the same time. It is prudent to keep it as Srinagar.

To promote peace in the disturbed S.Asia region, KPSing’s promotion of Republic of Pashtunistan including FATA, NWFP has some merit in it. The independent Republic of Baluchistan has even more merit. Baluchi people tend to be less of religious zealots, generally less violent than Punjabi muslims, and seem to secular minded. Something needed more in the South Asia region.

http://www.balochwarna.org/

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Singh, if Kashmir is not different from Durand line or Balochistan than why does every map show Kashmir to have dashed borders whereas Durand line and Balochistan are solid. Pakistan does not bother about Bangladesh because 1. we made peace with them 2. India does not occupy Bangladesh.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “if Kashmir is not different from Durand line or Balochistan than why does every map show Kashmir to have dashed borders whereas Durand line and Balochistan are solid.”

Indian maps do not. In a few years, once India becomes a real economic power, everyone will align with that. It is all money and power. No one will mess with China for its Tibet invasion because it is a permanent member of the security council and now has money and clout.

“Pakistan does not bother about Bangladesh because 1. we made peace with them”

What prevents Pakistan in making peace with India then?
If Bangladesh can be accepted because there is nothing that can be done about it, Kashmir is in the same boat. Nothing can be done to India by arm twisting methods. Twenty years ago, things were even worse – Pakistan had more clout with the US and its allies, it had more money and the nukes. It ran a decade long proxy war campaign in Kashmir that came to nothing at the end. So why not accept the fact that India cannot be pushed around and make peace with India?

” 2. India does not occupy Bangladesh.”

India does not occupy Kashmir either. If India occupies Kashmir, then it occupies every one of the thirty states within its union. In the current set up, Kashmir is an integral part of India, whether it has an autonomous state or not. It is inside Indian territory. That is why when Musharraf launched his Kargil misadventure, no one could support Pakistan. This was because Kargil was considered as being internal to India and India was defending it with its forces. The rest of the world simply stayed out of it as a result. If India launched an offensive into Gilgit, then it would be objectionable, because the world has more or less given it up as a Pakistani territory. It is time to move on.

I have stated our geo-strategic concerns regarding Kashmir many times here.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo: “if Kashmir is not different from Durand line or Balochistan than why does every map show Kashmir to have dashed borders whereas Durand line and Balochistan are solid.”

Indian maps do not.

… I wonder if this is the attitude faced by Pakistani or Kashmiri negotiators. Matrix, I stand corrected… take it away.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

we just need to consolidate our gains in kashmir, see below link for political accomodation of kashmiris.

http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes. com/2011-04-14/india/29417097_1_panchaya t-election-brisk-voting-polling

I have a suspicion that kashmiris may be talking about the Independence or “AZADI” for fear of only the Kashmiri terrorists who attack anyone who has a case about integrating with India. The gunning down of recent moderate leader is sufficient evidence to the atmosphere prevailing. Just like most of the pakistanis are seeing through the game of Military on Kashmir. Even Kashmiris are seeing the game of Kashmiri seperatists regarding independence.

We should consider multi pronged approach in order to corner pakistan, as we know now that even liberals believe that total Independence is the solution without understanding the ground realities which have been elaborated thoroughly.
Just as per RAW’s suggestions, We should pay them even in same token, raise the issue of Durand line, Baluchistan and give them ‘emotional support’ for the populations the reside there and because Pushtoons are very different from Pakistanis in culture and so as Baluchistan.
The only period when we were at peach with pakistan was after 1971 when Baloch insurgency had taken root. Maybe it is necessary for counties like Pakistan to be kept in low equilibrium and certain preoccupation so thay they wont bother us.
The foolish I.K. Gujral rolled back the extensive RAW spy network and we should slowly but surely resume it back.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

sensiblepatriot: “ust as per RAW’s suggestions, We should pay them even in same token, raise the issue of Durand line, Baluchistan and give them ‘emotional support’ for the populations the reside there and because Pushtoons are very different from Pakistanis in culture and so as Baluchistan.”

In today’s situation, this is probably not needed. Setting up sabotage missions is very risky and expensive. Such missions dabble with criminal methods a lot and sometimes they can backfire on us. India did this in Sri Lanka and burnt its fingers in the bargain. Spy agencies can have their activities confined to spying alone. In the case of India, economic strength and growing international clout will help us tremendously. Twenty years ago or even ten years ago, a Mumbai style attack would have received little or no sympathy from others. Mumbai attacks placed Pakistan in an extremely negative light.

We do not have do any damage to Pakistan. They are doing it themselves. So I’d let them torch their own roofs and burn themselves in the bargain. The only thing India has to make sure is that we are alert and are ready for any quick response from our side if we see any threat emerging from that side. They are already at loggerheads with the US and it will only make their situation even worse. When the ship sinks, all rats would want to leave on their own. We do not need to do anything. But we must make sure that we are able to respond to the situation well.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaib
Every time the Bharatis come up to my expectations, no surprise there. The only thing I want to share with you is the nature of their psychological warfare.
They start with the great Indian civilization which extends from southeast Asia to Hindukush mountains. This allows them to mentally think of intervention in all kind of places. So Pakistan having close relations with Chinese, Arabs or Iranians bothers then to no end. They try to put down Islam and Muslims every chance they get, but they have no problem providing them menial services in Gulf or anywhere else.
They have follow the imperial policy of divide and conquer. Their approach is obvious regarding Pakistan. They always want to talk about provincial discrimination, linguistic differences and so on and their focus is to demonize Punjab. They forget that it was their leaders who divided Punjab. They used and decimated once very prosperous Sikh community. Even Hindu community suffered because of this division. If Dilli walas want take a step toward peace, let them open Lahore-Amritsar area to interaction of people. Not going to happen.
Regarding Kashmir people, they are closest to Punjabis and the land has significance in water flows. If there is war, it will be because Bhartis can’t help but interfere in the flow of Kashmir rivers. This is my prediction.
Bhartis don’t know the Afghans very well. Americans are ready to deal with Taliban but not them.
I know them well and let them dwell in their scheming and I also don’t expect a reasonable response from them.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Matrix: “Every time the Bharatis come up to my expectations, no surprise there. The only thing I want to share with you is the nature of their psychological warfare.”

I really did not want to respond to this. But then warped minds need to be dealt with. I will stop with this response.

“They start with the great Indian civilization which extends from southeast Asia to Hindukush mountains. This allows them to mentally think of intervention in all kind of places.”

Please go through the list of arguments here and let us know where we bragged about the grand Indian civilization. We are not interested in intervening anywhere. We do intervene when we find any outcome affecting us. Every nation does it.

“So Pakistan having close relations with Chinese, Arabs or Iranians bothers then to no end.”

China gave the nuclear bomb design and enriched Uranium to go with it against international norms. Pakistan had the enrichment technology, but did not have the weapons making technology. China came forward to help. And we know that Pakistan’s nukes have India written on their nose cones. Arabs were involved in a lot of dangerous criminal activities sponsored by the ISI, some of which affected our internal security. Therefore we have to be concerned about that as well. We have not had any issues with Iranians. But one never knows in geo-politics. We know that Pakistan or China or anyone else is not a thumb suckling innocent nation. We have to do what we have to do. Isn’t your country protesting our presence in Afghanistan?

“They try to put down Islam and Muslims every chance they get, but they have no problem providing them menial services in Gulf or anywhere else.”

When was this? Definitely not in this forum. I know you will not give any specific example of any one doing that here. We have an equal number of Muslims in India. And many Indians who work in the Gulf countries are Muslims as well.

“They have follow the imperial policy of divide and conquer. Their approach is obvious regarding Pakistan.”

And Pakistan is a Buddhist paradise where everyone engages in social service to mankind. Your system has turned criminal. It has housed international criminals like Osama Bin Laden, Al Jawahiri, Mullah Omar, Dawood Ibrahim etc and has been protecting them. Our approach has been mild in fact.

“They always want to talk about provincial discrimination, linguistic differences and so on and their focus is to demonize Punjab.”

Punjab in Pakistan has been recognized as the danger zone. And they dominate the others. Ask a Balochi or a Pathan.

“They forget that it was their leaders who divided Punjab.”

Distortion of history is a very bad thing. As far as we know, we asked for a united India that included what makes up today’s Pakistan. And how conveniently you have twisted the facts!

“They used and decimated once very prosperous Sikh community. Even Hindu community suffered because of this division.”

See above. Look at what kind of dead heads we need to deal with.

“If Dilli walas want take a step toward peace, let them open Lahore-Amritsar area to interaction of people. Not going to happen.”

Close down your terrorist network and Madrasas. Come out of fundamentalism and learn history from proper sources. Then we will talk of normalization. Most of all, OPEN YOUR EYES!
Regarding Kashmir people, they are closest to Punjabis and the land has significance in water flows. If there is war, it will be because Bhartis can’t help but interfere in the flow of Kashmir rivers. This is my prediction.
Bhartis don’t know the Afghans very well. Americans are ready to deal with Taliban but not them.
I know them well and let them dwell in their scheming and I also don’t expect a reasonable response from them.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Matrix, I had to double check previous posts to determine if the same persons were making heartfelt peace overtures. Now a complete 180 about breaking Pakistan into multiple pieces! I cant actually pinpoint where I offended them. I can’t say I wasn’t warned. Hopefully, I will never meet you in person to remind me publicly. My family and friends will be more than happy to join you!

Regards.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaib,

I’m sorry, but I think you are the person here who backtracked. Which part of “peace first, Kashmir afterwards” didn’t you understand? I thought we had both realised that neither India nor Pakistan could afford to give away territory in the current political climate. It was a simple matter of putting the relatively small issue of Kashmir on the backburner (not forgetting about it forever) and concentrating on the larger issue of normalising relations first. For that to happen, all that Pakistan has to do is credibly renounce violence and other forms of hostility (such as printing fake Indian currency). Peace is then easy to achieve. After a few years of peace, Kashmir can be discussed more easily and compromises will be possible. This is not a pipe-dream. It really is that simple.

Is this simple approach hard to understand or agree to? Why the dogged return to Kashmir again and again in the current climate? Can’t you park it and talk about more important things? Pakistan is on a downslide. It may not be a failed state but that doesn’t look too far away. Don’t you think normalising relations with India can help to halt or at least slow that downslide, and isn’t that more important for Pakistan than Kashmir?

I cannot understand the obsession with Kashmir when the country itself is burning and losing strength and relevance by the day.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Every time the Bharatis come up to my expectations, no surprise there….I know them well and let them dwell in their scheming
Posted by Matrixx
==

Paki outbursts along predictable lines :-)

Hate and venom learned through “Pakistan Studies” comes in handy….scheming Hindu banias are at it :-)

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

These issues habve to be discussed in the context of the crocodile tears for Kashmiri “brothers”. The brothers inside Pakistan now are at each other’s throats.If Pakis shed confrontation, violent mental attitude towards India, Indians wouldn’t care for Pakis.

Neither the Baluch nor the Pashtuns supported the Pakistan movement. Sindhi grievances are a separate story.
post 1947, the Punjabi muslims have taken advantage to the hilt and they are viewed as usurpers and occupiers by the other ethnic groups.

The Pashtuns on the British-controlled side of the disputed Durand Line boundary with Afghanistan became a part of Pakistan after a controversial 1947 referendum in the Northwest Frontier Province (NWFP) administered under the control of British colonial authorities who openly favored the accession of the province to Pakistan. Out of 572,799 eligible voters, only 292,118 voted. This was because the referendum was boycotted by many Pashtuns. The Pashtun parties that had overwhelmingly won the 1946 provincial elections wanted the referendum toinclude the option of an independent “Pashtunistan” in addition to a choice between
India and Pakistan.

The leaders of these parties were imprisoned prior to the referendum and their newspapers banned after their “Bannu Declaration” calling for “Pashtunistan” on June 22, 1947. Out of those Pashtuns who did vote in tribal gatherings convened by the British authorities, all but 2,894 voted for Pakistan.

Thus the issue was decided by 50.5 percent of the eligible electorate amid charges of blatant rigging that still resonate today.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Prasad,

Let’s assume I backtracked. By that benchmark, what are the people that went from peace overtures during cricket diplomacy to advocating a breakup of pakistan and watch those double-dealing rats from a sinking ship? The language went from advocating peace to almost genocidal..

Yes I do think normalizing relations with India should be #1 agenda to address our problems. To me, this means exchange of ideas between the educated class for resolving core issues. My crazy proposal was for both countries to give roughly equal sized territory to an independent kashmir not *each* other as a breakthrough to the stalemate. A pipe dream indeed, but not a national insult.

At any rate, I feel good about the discussions I have had here and I would like to leave on good terms with everyone.

Regards.

Posted by shoaibo | Report as abusive

Shoaib
I don’t hold anything against you for trying to be reasonable with people across the border. This should be the human spirit.

You can see I hit a few raw nerves. I want them to stay riled up.

KPSingh
I know Punjab history from family members, don’t need Brahman version. Refresh my memory about great leader Master Tara Singh and his contribution to Punjabi welfare. On the other hand if you want to start with Maharaja Ranjeet Singh whom I do admire for certain qualities, it would be fine.

For rest of you, I don’t have time to respond individually but I say get life.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Shoaibo said:

> My crazy proposal was for both countries to give roughly equal sized territory to an independent kashmir not *each* other as a breakthrough to the stalemate. A pipe dream indeed, but not a national insult.

I agree it’s a well-meaning compromise, but even that requires trust. This is something we don’t have today between our countries. I don’t think there’s an alternative to letting a few years of peace go by in order to build up the level of trust required to engage in such “risky” initiatives. (From an Indian perspective, the fear is that an independent Kashmir will only stay independent for 5 minutes before being consumed by Pakistan.) You must surely realise we can’t make progress in this climate.

> At any rate, I feel good about the discussions I have had here and I would like to leave on good terms with everyone.

Don’t go yet. We are getting somewhere. Matrixx is a cynic, so don’t be too influenced by his views.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

It’s quite obvious to most Indians that long-lasting peace can not happen between India & Pakistan until the military establishment calls the shots in Pakistan. If true democracy, had ever existed in Pakistan (whereby the Generals are answerable to the civilians), I think, by now, we would have resolved all issues peacefully & would be co-existing as good neighbors. Under current circumstances, Indians should just keep doing what they are doing. Work hard, get educated & progress and everything else will take care of itself. Pakistan is working hard to self-destruct & implode (this is my opinion & not my wish). The current spat with the US, will speed up the process. Indians need to beef up their internal security, take steps to bring peace & prosperity to kashmir & stop worrying about Pakistan. Pakistan is heading towards irrelevancy.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Mortal1 said:

> It’s quite obvious to most Indians that long-lasting peace can not happen between India & Pakistan until the military establishment calls the shots in Pakistan.

I think that should either read “[...] cannot happen AS LONG AS the military establishment calls the shots in Pakistan” or “[...] cannot happen until the military STOPS CALLING the shots in Pakistan”.

I’m sure you didn’t mean it the way it was written. That would have been an Umair statement ;-).

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I stand corrected, GP. Coincidentally, prior to that comment, I had a dream of being in Nepal. Maybe, there’s something in the water there ;)

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

I saw that an Indian commenter had proposed that South Indians should formulate India’s foreign policy regarding Pakistan. I fully endorse such a proposal. I think, we punjabis & kashmiris (pundits), let our emotions get the better of us, when it comes to Pakistan.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Mortal: “I saw that an Indian commenter had proposed that South Indians should formulate India’s foreign policy regarding Pakistan. I fully endorse such a proposal.”

And see Sri Lanka get uncomfortable? Some Sri Lankans hate India passionately too. I think there are many there.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Shoaibo:”Matrix, I had to double check previous posts to determine if the same persons were making heartfelt peace overtures. Now a complete 180 about breaking Pakistan into multiple pieces! I cant actually pinpoint where I offended them”.
I bet it must have rubbed you on the wrong side, we felt the same thing regarding the proposal of Complete Independence for Kashmir and even though it is only valley districts, and as KP said Independence to Kashmir is a highway for Integration with pakistan which is not acceptable.

We really did not backtrack regarding kashmir, it was you who first acknowledged the futility of continous hostility over kashmir and ended up with Independent proposal which I tweaked that particular proposal saying it can be given Independence (aka autonomy) within their respective constitutions.

Shoaib, We understand the difficulty in being a liberal in your country today and we respect you for that. Remember when I said, we found one liberal at last and we are not going to leave you in hurry. I have seen and read many liberals from pakistan who pushed for peace overtures but ended with same old stance of complete independence even after having them explain all the difficulties and impracticalities of such solution. May be it is to safe themselves physically in open politics or saved from hounded on the internet.
You must have realized where “it hits our raw nerves” by now. When independence is given to kashmir, it will open a tinderbox full of half-boiled insurgencies that would want to take advantage and what if southers districts of Assam and Easter districts of west bengal start demanding independence with final objective of merger with Bangladesh. The impending disaster will push the country completely to the other side of the political winds, that is thoroughly into the lap of extreme right wing zionists as you put it, some hawkish Indian bloggers would look to you like they are leftist liberals!
what we fought for last 63 years is to avoid becoming a hindu Pakistan and our liberal voices would be curtailed in such atmosphere and we would be in same psyhological deadlock as pakistan liberals find themselves in. Just like it becomes difficult to speak his mind that one day his words come out from his heart but next day it is pressured into coming out from his brain, we will be in such state too and what people like matrix would want to paint us, we thoroughly want to avoid that scenario.
we are liberals but we are not stupid.

Mortal: “I saw that an Indian commenter had proposed that South Indians should formulate India’s foreign policy regarding Pakistan. I fully endorse such a proposal.”
My contention was reactive in nature here, so dont take that too seriously, though I would only guarded regarding extreme exhuberance shown by some leaders which is unwarranted. We should only bring to the table the best people not just neutral but practical and wily too and competetive in every nature of the word.
The idea that only South Indians should decide on policy “regarding pakistan” (only pakistan) has brought by the military industrial complex which has major presence in South and who do not want an end to hostilities. Once a defence minister who came from south answered to an employ of Ordinance factor that they should not fear of thier jobs becoz as long as we have pakistan, our jobs are safe “.
Discalimer: My father works in that defence factory.
Well these guys employ such security experts and they manage the “environment” for them.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Matrixx:

“I know Punjab history from family members, don’t need Brahman version.”

The problem with learning history from family members is that it mixes in individual opinions and interpretations of events mixed in. Some of the statements you have made clearly tell me that distortion of historic factors happens due to emotional reactions in people. Depending on which side of the fence one is, such distortion goes without verification and become a perpetual drag for everyone. Instead of making people reasonable, it makes them adamant. Such one-sided version of history only helps built walls around oneself. That is why I emphasize that people read from various sources including their own. Slowly one can discern the truth from such diverse descriptions. Many politically made statements and moves end up becoming historical facts, which result in dividing people more. Your historic knowledge seems so limited that you are calling me a Brahmin. People only hear what they like to hear. But one cannot wash away real truth and get emotional. Excepting for one or two, I find most Pakistanis knowing distorted version of history fed by their relatives and companions. All this falls right into the hands of militant movements that are trying control people.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

KPSingh
I asked you some simple questions regarding division of Punjab which any historian worth his salt, coming from that area should ask. I asked your version of history assuming that you are Punjabi Sikh, perhaps I’m mistaken. Correct me if I’m wrong.
You, in front of everybody, distort my statements that I called you a Brahman (I didn’t know that it was an offense in any case). Is this what you call truth seeking method of historical investigations.
It is obvious that you parrot INC version controlled by Nehru family from day one. If not then tell me what your version. I’m willing to listen to truth, bitter as it might be.
What is this deal about outsourcing Indian foreign policy to south Indian politicians? Can’t trust Sikh PM, Nehru clan or is it the Catholic goddess.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Matrixx: “I asked you some simple questions regarding division of Punjab which any historian worth his salt, coming from that area should ask.”

Read the book “Freedom at Midnight” by Dominic Lapiere and Larry Collins. You do not need anyone’s version. These men are neither Indians nor Pakistanis.

Or read “History of India – Part II” by Perceival Spear (sic).

They provide quite detailed description of partition.

I am a Punjabhi Sikh. My grandmother comes from Gujranwala. She never saw her sister who disappeared into the mob.

I do know the story told by my parents and grand parents. But I rely on many sources to construct the picture. This is because of my concern about inherent bias. You claim to rely only on your parents.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

The last three Indian PMs were all doves on Pakistan (IK Gujral, AB Vajpayee, Manmohan Singh). The next one will very likely be a hawk, simply because the doves are out of touch with popular Indian sentiment and a correction is overdue. The Pakistanis had better grab this window of opportunity and settle quickly, because such an opportunity won’t come again.

India’s strength has been growing enormously all the while that the doves have been at the helm, which is why Pakistan hasn’t been negatively affected. If they think India is evil now, maybe they should wait till the hawks are in charge. The true extent of India’s dominance will then be revealed. Pressure on Beijing, Riyadh and Washington is relatively easy to exert in respect of a weakened Pakistan, especially if it’s presented as a stark choice (“Those who are not with us are against us”). A hawkish Indian government can subtly sink Pakistan, nukes or no nukes, without firing a shot.

I’m not personally an advocate of such power-based diplomacy, but this is my prediction. I believe the Pakistani establishment is being extremely short-sighted in driving a hard bargain even when they are weak, just because their opposite number is a dove. The tables will be abruptly when Manmohan Singh exits. He’s really their last shot at staying relevant or even surviving as a nation.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Typo:

The tables will be abruptly TURNED when Manmohan Singh exits.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

KPSingh
I would no doubt for a moment what your grandmother says and i fully share your pain. At least in mind you should be able to see Gujanwala, the place and the people, the good and the bad.
I have read many histories over years and most of them concern the thinking of leaders at that time. What bothers me is their lack of concern for ordinary people and I spare no one including the Brits. Whose bright idea was to transfer the population?
As far as current situation is concerned, whatever historical view they like is fine but don’t tell Pakistanis that their whole existence is based on falsehood and some body from across the border knows the truth and will lead to that truth.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Parasad
Oh you got that secret weapon of subversion and more. I should be shaking in my boots but I don’t feel like it.
Have you developed super jawan who can fight thru baking heat and radiation.
Don’t tell me, keep the suspense.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Humour: Like the US senate confirmation hearings, they should perhaps ask future Indian prime ministers, “Can you recite an Urdu couplet?” If the answer is yes, they should be gently escorted from the room where Pakistan policy is being formulated :-).

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Matrixx said:

> Oh you got that secret weapon of subversion and more. I should be shaking in my boots but I don’t feel like it.
Have you developed super jawan who can fight thru baking heat and radiation.
> Don’t tell me, keep the suspense.

You simply don’t get it, do you?

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Let me make it clear to those (this means you, Matrixx) who can’t seem to get out of their black-and-white thinking – I am neither a dove nor a hawk. I believe in neither domination nor appeasement. I am not a religious or ethnic bigot. I am a humanist and a futurist. I also think I am a realist, although to people who are more cynical, I may appear to be a dreamer. I describe the present and the future the way I see them, with just enough care to avoid needless offence.

Unfortunately for Pakistan, I don’t believe either the present or the future is very rosy, unless they make some drastic course corrections.

Jihad has blown up in their faces. There are more bomb blasts and assassinations in Pakistan than in India or Indian-held Kashmir. The terrorists are no longer under the control of the official establishment and are in many cases an adversary.

Fundamentalism is no longer a motivator against external enemies. It has now grown like a weed and strangled opinion and freedom within Pakistan itself. It has filled its own people with fear of reprisal for just speaking their minds. Fundamentalism has killed Pakistani democracy, not the lack of a free press or elections. This is now a self-censored society.

The Kashmir policy is a fiasco. The Kashmiris would rather go it alone than join Pakistan. What an embarrassment!

The Afghanistan policy is a shambles. The most hated country in Afghanistan is Pakistan. The most popular country is India! What humiliation!

The strategic relationship with the US is in shreds, and even the Americans have finally begun to wake up to the duplicitous nature of their ally. How long can a superpower be blackmailed and threatened? What will happen when the dollars stop flowing?

The Chinese are mining their raw materials and flooding their markets in exchange, ruining the economy both ways. They now control Gilgit-Baltistan with the willing surrender of the Pakistani government. They must be licking their chops and deciding when to declare Pakistan “South Xinjiang” and formally take over.

The printing presses are being diverted from printing fake Indian currency to genuine Pakistani currency on the orders of the State Bank of Pakistan, since taxing the rich and raising petrol prices are obviously out of the question. Here’s to the next set of Nobel laureates in economics for their thesis on how to sink an economy in the shortest possible time!

The India policy, needless to say, is the worst fiasco. Every attempt to take Kashmir by force has failed miserably. Making an enemy of India has caused half the country to break away. Even attempting to stall India’s economic success with the Mumbai terrorist attack backfired really badly with the live capture of Qasab.

Great work all around!

But what’s the response to criticism of short-sighted Pakistani policy? Oh, baking heat and radiation from a nuclear attack on India. Three cheers for Matrixx, intellectual analyst par excellence. I take off my hat to you.

Is there anyone out there with brains (in the right place)? We would like to have an intelligent discussion here.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Parasad
Your tone has changed dramatically from one to the next post. In your 9:30 post your argument hinges on new PM taking hard line coercive approach. In your 11:15 post the whole argument depends on Neocon failed state concept and propaganda associated with that. India has had secret dealings with Zionists for a very long time. It is also seeping through the current administration and becoming visible.
With futurologist like I have nothing to worry about.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

Matrixx,

(I take pains to spell your name with two ‘x’s, so please try and spell my name correctly too. It’s Ganesh, and if you really must address me by surname, it’s Prasad, not Parasad.)

I don’t think you’ve understood *anything* of what I’ve been trying to say. You only see hostility when someone says something you don’t like. It’s pointless discussing further, so let’s just drop it. (Another example to you, no doubt, of an Indian dodging hard questions.)

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

Finally Pakistan has taken come courage in standing up to the US. I do not know if it is a good sign of things to come or not. But this was the question I asked earlier:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42715278/ns/ world_news-south_and_central_asia/

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

Prasad
I ‘m sorry about not spelling your name right. I forgot that Indian ruling class sentiments are are sacred never to be violated.
But I do enjoy reading your prognostication about Pakistan.

KPSingh
Your reference is a small indication of shift which the international alignments are going thru. I see Pakistan taking neutral position till changes stablize.

Posted by Matrixx | Report as abusive

I have always believed Pakistani State always had a Plan B in case of their state failure. The plan was to declare that India was the reason for its gross failure to become a normal state and kashmir was the casus belli to which India conspired against to keep pakistan bogged down for eventual failure!
It is these experts who always claimed India was never comfortable with the idea of pakistan and that Pakistan today has a glorious existence inspte of christian-zionist-hindu conspiracies against their Islamic citadel of South Asia and Indeed for the world.
Just as the world has suspected and now coming to terms with the truth that every excuse for the pakistani state in not taking on the extrements was being pointed at the Indian bogeyman, strangely the propoganda seeped so deep down into pakistani state’s psyche that people who started this propoganda have started to believe in this disinformation themselves!
Gobbels once said that “we should be careful that we would not fall for the same propoganda that we are doing, as we might start believing the the same lies ourselves!” they did.. and we know what happened then with Germany.

I have always believed its the economic strength which will always be the most powerful geopolitical event that shapes our geopolitics and the future in general. It is this economic force that has subdued USSR in relation to US. It is this economic force that keeps Indians muted when comparisions with china starts flowing, the fact that we are atleast 12 years behind in economic parity with China is keeping us from undertaking crass adventurism towards the Chinese. Just like the world never allowed the US to fail economically as it was too big to fail and in the event of its failure, would have taken the larger world with it.
Future geopolitics too would revolve around it and certain states which cross certain threshold value of economic significance will be guarded by all countries of the world since they do not want to see these countries fail lest their own economies tumble under this scenario.
These significantly large economies will become even more powerful to the other signification powers if they are complemented by the hard power. (Strategic Nuclear Weapons). But Counties which have very little economic significance in the world would turn out be nuisance makers and it is the nuisance value that they bring to the table will allow them to survice but adrift directionless into the oblivion.
Their only nuisance value can be put as “Humto doobenge sanam, par tumko bhi lejayege”.

Posted by sensiblepatriot | Report as abusive

Matrixx: “I see Pakistan taking neutral position till changes stablize.”

The question is whether things will stabilize. American war on terror in Afghanistan has made things unstable in Pakistan. Things have gone from bad to worse. Is there a guarantee that the US will not mess up things for Pakistan more? It has already messed things up. How will stability arise out of all this? The only hope is the continuation of a democratic government till the completion of its term. The US can turn the heat on if it wants. It did in the case of Iran. The only positive side that Iran had was its oil.

What we are concerned about as your neighboring country is the instability that seems to be lurking due to the fall out between the US and Pakistan. This instability is not good for Pakistan as well as all the neighboring countries. Both Pakistan and US are walking into the trap of the fundamentalist groups that have been waiting for an occasion of this kind.

As your neighbor, I wish stability for you guys. It is very important for all of us. (Though I talk tough sometimes, in reality, we all want a Pakistan that is a normal nation, stable and progressive). Hope everything will work out fine. It is not easy to turn against the US and survive, especially when a country is weak in all aspects, other than its military.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

@”Finally Pakistan has taken come courage in standing up to the US. I do not know if it is a good sign of things to come or not. But this was the question I asked earlier:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42715278/ns/ world_news-south_and_central_asia/” Posted by KPSingh01

I have not seen this news confirmed by any major US, international or Pakistani newspapers. We’ll find soon, if it has any merit.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Matrixx said:

> I ‘m sorry about not spelling your name right. I forgot that Indian ruling class sentiments are are sacred never to be violated.

Of course, this has nothing to do with common courtesy.

The fine balance of prejudice is to hold ridiculous opinions about other people without becoming a laughing stock. Oops.

You’re now in the Rex Minor bin. Adios.

Regards,
Ganesh Prasad

Posted by prasadgc | Report as abusive

I ‘m sorry about not spelling your name right. I forgot that Indian ruling class sentiments are are sacred never to be violated.

There is an Ajmal Kasab quality to the postings of Matrixx. “Are you a brahman”, “sikh brhaman”, “catholic goddess”. Rotten product of pakistani education system.

Casteism is rampant in Pakistan as I had posted a few weeks ago. Practice of untouchability, brutality shown by upper caste Pakistanis towards lowaer castes has been well documented by UN bodies.

Yet Ajmal Kasab and his fellow Pakistanis had to catch a boat and come to Taj hotel in Mumbai, they had to place the guns on the foreheads of the people and asked them if they were “upper caste” or “lower caste” before shooting them. This after asking muslims to step aside of course.

Matrixx must have won gold medal or something in Pakistan studies.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

Matrixx is regurgitating pak hateful lie that Nehru, Patel Co are responsible for partition of Punjab. It is funny they even like Hindutvadis if they support this nonsense more out of hatred for Gandhi, Nehru than for the love of truth.

Here is a (surprisingl) fair minded Pakistani rejecting this posionous nonsense taught in Pakistani schools and which Matrixx has imbibed well.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp  ?page=2010%5C12%5C07%5Cstory_7-12-2010_ pg3_2

ANALYSIS: Pakistan and the dehumanisation of minorities -Ishtiaq Ahmed

Ridiculing Sikhs as simpletons is a prejudice that still survives in Pakistani Punjab, but their leaders proved to be the most farsighted in anticipating the type of Pakistan that would emerge. In the second half of May 1947, the Sikh leaders met Jinnah in Delhi. Jinnah and Liaquat had come fully prepared to convince them to support the Pakistan demand. They told the Sikhs to write down whatever they wanted and it would be granted. The charm offensive, however, was too late in the day.

Earlier, in March 1947, Sikh villages in the Rawalpindi, Attock and Jhelum districts had borne the brunt of mob attacks at the hands of Muslims. At least 2,000 Sikhs lost their lives.

>>>>> No Muslim League leader, including Jinnah, issued a public statement condemning those attacks. I have looked in vain in the two main English-language newspapers of pre-partition Punjab, the Tribune and The Pakistan Times as well as in the Jinnah Papers for any evidence of the condemnation of that outrage.

Posted by netizen | Report as abusive

@Netizen: Stop all this neocon-zionist propaganda. Pakistan is doing just fine. It’s economy, education, internal security, democracy, law & oder, foreign policy etc. are all in good shape & way better than bharat. So just cut it, you brahman, baniya, upper class hindu, you!

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Mortal: “I have not seen this news confirmed by any major US, international or Pakistani newspapers. We’ll find soon, if it has any merit.”

Looks like it is for real. I saw another item in CNN today.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/asiapcf/04  /22/pakistan.drone.strike/index.html?hp t=T2

However, the CNN source is a Pakistani official. The US has not publicly acknowledged the presence of the secret launching base from Pakistan. However, it is an open secret. May be there are more than one location from which drones are being launched.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

The United States should simply divorce itself from the region and depart… they have no business in “Muslim” lands… and let the chips fall where they may.. undoubtedly Pakistan will default since The Saudi King despises President Zardari and Ghadafi is in no position to assist with money, his oil fields shut and funds frozen.. but then again, reading the above, maybe “dove” MM Singh will come to the rescue with Funds..

Posted by Bludde | Report as abusive

The United States should simply divorce itself from the region and depart… they have no business in “Muslim” lands… and let the chips fall where they may.. undoubtedly Pakistan will default since The Saudi King despises President Zardari and Ghadafi is in no position to assist with money, his oil fields shut and funds frozen.. but then again, reading the above, maybe “dove” MM Singh will come to the rescue with Funds..

Posted by Bludde | Report as abusive

Bludde: “The United States should simply divorce itself from the region and depart… they have no business in “Muslim” lands…”

The US is in some Muslim lands due to oil. It is in some Muslim lands to save its allies like Israel. It is in some Muslim lands like Af-Pak because of being hurt by Islamic terrorists. They abandoned Af-Pak after defeating the USSR. This was one of the major complaints by many Pakistanis. They wouldn’t have come back here if not for the terrorists who hit them hard. They could care less if anyone else existed.

“and let the chips fall where they may.. undoubtedly Pakistan will default since The Saudi King despises President Zardari and Ghadafi is in no position to assist with money, his oil fields shut and funds frozen.. but then again, reading the above, maybe “dove” MM Singh will come to the rescue with Funds..”

Pakistan is different from its military. Its military is the real nation. The rest is just a skin being used to appear valid. Saudi Arabia deals only with Pak military. They are like their security guards. They’d love to control the Saudis as well. That is why they are protecting Bin Laden. It can come in handy in the future if the odds turn against them. Pakistan always has some chips up its sleeve to counter moves by others, including the US.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive