Saturday, August 10, 2013
Dealing with India
August 9, 2013
By Saeed Qureshi
According to the Times of India’s report dated July 15, a member of a Special Investigating Team (SIT) of India's Central Bureau of Investigation had accused incumbent Indian governments of "orchestrating" the terror attack on Indian Parliament on 13 December 2001 and the 2008 Mumbai attack carried out on 26 November 2008.
There is no apparent reason to discard this bombshell information disclosed by an Indian secret service operative. Ostensibly the atrocious aim behind these sinister plots was to project Pakistan as a terrorism sponsoring state and thus antagonize the international community against it.
India had been maliciously harping upon the bogey that the parliament building and Mumbai attacks carried out by the disparate militant groups and Ajmal Kasab band respectively, were sponsored by Pakistan and her intelligence outfits.
This was not for the first time that India had blamed the Pakistan based radical Islamic organizations for Mumbai calamity. Earlier, the Kashmiris freedom fighters were held responsible for the storming the Parliament building in New Delhi in December 2001. Some other similar attacks were also attributed to the Kashmir militants.
While India bracketed Pakistan government and its intelligence agencies as the accomplices in these activities with the militants, it conveniently forgets that Pakistan has also suffered enormously at the hands of these brutal radicals who treat India and Pakistan at par. They carry out suicide bombing and murderous ambushes to punish Pakistan for its partnership with United States in hunting down the perpetrators of the 9/11 mayhem.
In the aftermath of the parliament building episode, India demanded the unacceptable option of carrying out punitive air strikes on the chosen targets in Pakistan. For a neighbor to ask for such an unusual permission from the United Nations is as weird as it is lethal to the territorial integrity of a sovereign country. There seemed to be more than meets the eye in the Indian call for attacking the militants’ targets within Pakistan.
One would wonder if the Mumbai bloody melodrama was deliberately enacted to achieve the concealed yet coveted objective of having a walk over the territory of Pakistan and Kashmir and to glibly and indiscriminately bomb any place anywhere. In peace times, this untenable demand was made by India against such a neighbor that has gone a long way to normalize bilateral relations in all avenues with her.
At the behest of India, had Pakistan been subjected to the UN sanctions, then obviously India would have been free to also curb and crush with full might, the Kashmiris’ uprising against the Indian occupation, now apace for six decades. In that situation Pakistan would be severely constrained to use its army in support of Kashmiris and also to defend its territory from the Indian onslaughts.
There couldn't be better time for India to achieve this agenda as a time, when Pakistan army is bogged down for several years on the Western front and India has become a strategic partner with the United States.
Pakistan has already been under enormous burgeoning pressure from United States for using its armed forces to annihilate the radical Islamic militants in the regions starting from Afghanistan to the extreme periphery of Kashmir.
In the aftermath of these incidents, the call from India to go for the monstrous reprisal in the form of military aerial forays against Pakistan would have been a grievous folly entailing horrific consequences for the region. If India wanted to exploit the Mumbai attacks to squeeze Pakistan and to label it as a terrorism sponsor, then it is as brazen as malicious. But now that charade has exploded on the face of India when her own secret agents are spilling the beans and when as the proverb goes, “the cat is out of the bag”
India wants the same leverage and queer rights that Israel is exercising against the Palestinians, in that she kills, at will, the vulnerable Palestinians indiscriminately. But is Pakistan what Palestine is?Pakistan is a sovereign state in existence and a member of the United Nations. The state of Palestine is yet to appear and take a physical shape.
The kind of rift between Israel and Palestine is anchored on legitimate demand for the statehood of an uprooted people. India and Pakistan are already two independent states resulting from the partition of India via an established international covenant. The incident of Mumbai is no parallel to the deep rooted and historical conflict between Israel and the Palestinian nation.
The 9/11 event is also no match to the Mumbai incident. The 9/11 event is a mega sized act of terrorism and the Mumbai is a much smaller local event. The United States has not been able to conclusively establish the identities of the 9/11 perpetrators. Similarly the Indian government had been far from being candid and unambiguous about the individuals or backdoor abettors actually responsible for the Mumbai carnage or attack on the parliament
But the whole context and narrative of the Indian blame game against Pakistan turns upside down after the submission of the statement by the Indian secret service operative in the Indian Supreme Court. It is for the international community to understand the Indian diabolic designs for staging such clandestine vicious operations and then putting blame on Pakistan.
An objective assessment would lead a dispassionate observer to the conclusion that no matter how much Pakistan stoops low before the Indian conditionalities for peaceful coexistence, India would not relent in asking for more. The reason is that Pakistan has always been a thorn in the side of India. India displayed its historic animus towards Pakistan by dismembering the latter in 1971.
Since 1971, Pakistan has remained embarked upon a path of reconciliation and appeasement with India. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif took giant leaps to make friendship with India so much so that the then Indian prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee traveled to Lahore in a bus in February 1999. That visit culminated in the historic Lahore Declaration. The Lahore Declaration spelled out various steps for normalizing relations between the two nations.
President Pervez Musharraf during his rule of 9 years made every effort to woo India. He is on record of mellowing down and drastically departing from Pakistan’s traditional stand on Kashmir with regard to a plebiscite. But India seldom seemed content with these landmark measures although these were detrimental to Pakistan and to Pervez Musharraf’s personal standing as a patriotic or nationalist sovereign.
President Asif Zardari had gone extra mile to break the barriers of acrimony and distrust between the two neighbors. He outstripped his pro-conciliation predecessors by declaring Kashmiri insurgents as terrorists and suggesting the elimination of the boundary line between the two countries. But India does not seem to be content or convinced that Pakistan can be a friendly country.
It is my considered opinion that India will not rest till Pakistan disappears from the world map. India with an enormous goodwill around the world will keep cashing on the international support to fulfill her agenda of further truncating Pakistan or reducing its size to the level of the East Punjab. India would keep looking for opportune time to achieve that sinister objective no matter how docilely the incumbent Pakistani leadership panders towards her. Unfortunately the leaders in Pakistan lack an emphatic commitment and the clear vision to protect the motherland.
The peace formula or overtures from Pakistan cannot fruitfully or durably work with India as borne out by the futility of such initiatives in the past. One can imagine how fragile the peace-based relations with India could be, from the latest incident in which the Indian protesters encircled and stopped the Lahore-bound Dosti bus in.
The protestors surrounded the bus and chanted slogans against Pakistan for the alleged killing of Indian troops at the Line of Control. The bus was coming from New Delhi. It surmises that even if the inter-governments relations are friendly, the Indian people generally, are hostile towards Pakistan.
Pakistan should set a limit to curry favor with India and stop negotiating with India while lying down. As India is to Pakistan, an irreconcilable hostile country gets emboldened if not resisted or counterpoised by courage and determination. If the final clash is to take place then let it be so. Like their predecessors barring the brief Musharraf’s Kargil fiasco the successive Pakistani leaders in power have been more focused on extravaganza and puerile frivolities than serving their bedeviled nation.
It would be rather plausible if the PMLN comes out of its complacent frame, fantasy and day dreaming with regard to having friction free bilateral relations with a dagger in cloak neighbor. The example of gas pipeline project was disrupted and abandoned by India for extremely flimsy reasons. The underlying reason for that volte- face was that it would have economically benefited Pakistan in a huge manner.
If India is supporting separatist movements in Balochistan why Pakistan cannot do tit for tat retaliation in India where dozens of such breakaway movements are going on for decades against the Indian hegemony.
There cannot be a more sublime cause than to go down fighting for safeguarding the national honor and territorial integrity.
But if Pakistan surrenders hands down, history will judge Pakistani leaders as spineless betrayers to a country and a nation that was carved out with a dogged spirit for freedom despite a combined opposition and treachery from Indians and the British imperialists.
Let Pakistan fight on all fronts and fight to the last. To procure peace by becoming a protégé and a client state of India is ignominious and must be discarded. It’s time to talk plainly also to the Americans to not drag us too much in a quagmire that would ultimately devour us as a united country. However if genuine desire on the part of India for making durable peace with Pakistan is discernible then there may be no harm in giving such an effort yet another trial.