Pakistan: Now or Never?

Perspectives on Pakistan

Miliband’s gift: stiffening Indian resolve over Pakistan


British Foreign Secretary David Miliband may yet end up achieving the opposite of what he intended in India when he called for a resolution of the Kashmir dispute in the interests of regional security.

To some Indians, linking the attacks in Mumbai - which New Delhi says originated from Pakistan – to the issue of Kashmir is not just insensitive, it is also a wake-up call. The lesson they have drawn is this: for all the world’s sense of outrage over Mumbai, India will have to deal with Pakistan on its own, and not expect foreign powers to lean on its neighbour in the manner it wants.

Miliband’s visit was a “jarring reminder to India to stop off-shoring its Pakistan policy,” writes Indian security affairs analyst Brahma Chellaney in the Asian Age. He then goes on to call for a set of measures including a military option short of war to weaken Pakistan.

New Delhi has diplomatic options that it has not yet deployed, he argues. These include recalling the Indian High Commissioner to Islamabad or suspending peace talks, or disbanding a “farcical” joint anti-terrorism mechanism or halting state-assisted cultural and sporting links or invoking trade sanctions.