What's new

Pakistan Stumps Us Again

fatman17

PDF THINK TANK: CONSULTANT
Apr 24, 2007
31,423
88
37,590
Country
Pakistan
Location
Pakistan
Pakistan Stumps Us Again

Rajiv Dogra

Last Updated : 16 Feb 2009 09

The deception is complete. The entire world can see it, yet we refuse to acknowledge it. Once again Pakistan has conned us into an unenviable corner, but not without some muted acquiescence by others. It played its cards in a masterly fashion. Initially, after the Mumbai attacks, when India was livid and the international revulsion high, it pretended injured innocence, promising the fullest cooperation to India. But behind the scenes it was busy cultivating the masters of the world and converting them to its view that India protests too much, and far too often, without good reason.


With India, it grew steadily bolder. Over time it gave up its passive stance and started bantering, engaging the Indian leadership in a slanging match of calculated attrition.

During the last few weeks, Indian people were witness to a college like debate via the media. It defies belief that we allowed ourselves to be led into such a trap.

Once Pakistan had achieved its first objective of temporising, it grew more brazen.

More importantly, the masters of the world weighed in subtly on its side. Pakistan was no longer in the guilty corner.

If any proof of this dramatic turnaround was needed, it has come loud and clear in a series of public pronouncements recently.

A few days ago in an interview to the NBC network President Obama said, “Afghanistan has to be stabilised to ensure the stability of Pakistan.” With that single pronouncement he shifted the goal posts.

It was with the objective of eliminating terrorism that US had attacked Afghanistan in the aftermath of 9/11. Now Obama seems to have set his sights on an altogether different horizon. Now, stability of Pakistan, more than anything else, is his top priority.

Privately that message was conveyed even more bluntly to President Karzai.

This happened before Obama as sworn in.

According to published reports when vice president-elect Joe Biden was visiting Afghanistan in early January 2009, President Karzai spoke to him at length about the difficulties that Afghanistan was facing due to Pakistan’s actions. Biden told him brusquely, “Pakistan is fifty times more important to America than Afghanistan!” Biden is not a first time Senator. He is an experienced politician, and he is deeply involved in the mysterious world of foreign policy where every nuance, each word is pondered over and debated. So he must have known that the news of his brush off to the Afghan President would get around.

That statement contains a message for us too. If Pakistan scores that much higher, and if that is the American priority with regard to Afghanistan which till recently was central to America’s global fight against terror, the natural question one must ask is where does that place India? But we are both unable and unwilling to see the writing on wall. Obama seems to have opted for the Pakistani route to solve its Afghanistan imbroglio. It has been influenced by the view propagated by the Pakistani establishment that they are the good guys and the terrorists who are giving them a bad name are: fighting for a cause like Kashmir, terrorising Pakistan as well; and besides Kashmir the other root causes of terror are poverty and illiteracy so the world needs to help Pakistan economically.

Joe Biden sponsored bill proposes to provide $15 billion in assistance over the next 10 years to Pakistan to strengthen civilian institutions.

Still, if there was any doubt, the Munich Security Conference (February 6-8) provided incontrovertible proof of American intent. Vice President Joe Biden’s speech was to be the highlight of this conference.

His statement was eagerly awaited as it was going to be the first articulation of Obama administration’s worldview at an international forum. Biden declared, “No strategy for Afghanistan can succeed without Pakistan.” He added, “We must all strengthen our cooperation with the people and the government of Pakistan, help them stabilise the tribal areas and promote economic development and opportunities throughout the country.” This could well have been written by a Pakistani.

Yet we keep our blinkers on. At the same Munich conference our recent bete-noire, the British foreign secretary David Miliband had this to say, “…Yet the paradox is that while our nations (in Europe) are more peaceful and prosperous than ever, our citizens do not feel secure. Why? Because they know how the breakdown in law and order in Pakistan or Afghanistan can threaten their security in London, Hamburg or Istanbul.” This should be considered along with another development where the Britishers are taking out advertisements in Pakistani media, the effect of which is virtually to plead that UK should not be attacked because it has so many people like them living there.

How do we term these developments? Self-interest above everything else? Will self preservation be the primary motive of international discourse? If that is so then why are we expecting the international community to fight our battle? Moreover this new trend is also reflective of the concerns reportedly expressed by the CIA to President Obama that British born Pakistani terrorists who have extensive links with the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) are the biggest threat to the US. Read between the lines the message is clear — West would not like to do anything that upsets Pakistan and consequently has security implications for people in west.

The Munich Conference was also addressed by Shah Mehmood Qureshi, the foreign minister of Pakistan. So soon after the Mumbai attacks any other leader would have squirmed, perhaps even called the attack a ‘national shame’. But not the Pakistani foreign minister; he was hectoring and conciliatory in turn. He also prescribed the course that West should adopt. His focus wasn’t just on terrorism, he included extremism too. His diagnosis identified root causes such as Kashmir as leading to terrorism.

And in his prescriptive advice he asked the West to: adopt a regional approach; avoid overemphasis on military solution; people must have the ownership in governance; provide priority to education and development with due regard to the religious sentiments; and there should be renewed efforts against the drug trade. Isn’t it interesting that the Obama administration is thinking along similar lines? Eventually it may also mean that the Kashmir issue becomes a focus of that regional approach.

Already, the world has moved on since 26/11 and India has been successfully stonewalled by Pakistan. Despite our threats of keeping all our options open, time has shown that we are option-less.

The terror masters and their actors must be pleased with the turn of events. Now they can plan their next attack, as and when they fancy. The time may have come for us to face some blunt basics of the real world; where Pakistan successfully employs a large element of hypocrisy in its dealings with others

About the author:

Rajiv Dogra is a former Ambassador
 

Patriot

ELITE MEMBER
Sep 8, 2008
7,714
0
6,327
Rajiv Dogra is an Indian diplomat, author and commentator. Dogra was the Indian Consul General to Karachi, Pakistan, and has served as Indian ambassador to Romania and to Italy.
Info about Author of the Article..
 

Awesome

RETIRED MOD
Mar 24, 2006
22,023
5
20,323
What the hell does Rajiv Dogra wants? Just to see Pakistan implicated in a way that would harm Pakistan for the fun of things? I mean we've already arrested relevant people, banned organizations, carried out investigations, shared evidence, we're looking like good guys because we ARE the good guys.

No one has said India is the villain in all of this either. But if India keeps insisting that Pakistan be forcibly treated as the bad guy, then naturally the world is sooner or later going to start thinking... "Wtf?" India is really going overboard, and the world is telling India to calm down... Rajiv Dogra doesn't like it. He wants India's war mongering to be appreciated not condemned.

Thats just not the way of the world.
 

AgNoStiC MuSliM

ADVISORS
Jul 11, 2007
24,670
81
33,816
Country
Pakistan
Location
United States
Very interesting piece, though I do think his excellency the former Ambassador 'doth protest too much".

Rife in the piece is the conspiratorial argument that all of Pakistan's actions have been nothing but a sham of Machiavellian proportions - we have schemed, lied and contrived to get the 'masters' on our side. The author refuses to consider even for a moment that perhaps Pakistan is not the target of condemnation because it was sincere in its offers of cooperation, that it was sincere when it stated that its institutions were not involved, and that the rhetoric from the GoI and the Indian media was over the top and did vitiate the atmosphere.

Perhaps the 'masters' also paid attention to these developments, that did reflect poorly on India's sincerity to peacefully resolve disputes with Pakistan, and cast her in a negative light:

Kashmir beckons

New Delhi pulled out all the stops when rumors surfaced that Holbrooke's mandate might include the Kashmir problem. Obama paid heed to Indian sensitivities. But at a price. It compels India to curtail its own excessive instincts in recent years to seek US intervention in keeping India-Pakistan tensions in check.

In short, New Delhi will have to pay much greater attention to its bilateral track with Pakistan. And, of course, Pakistan will expect India to be far more flexible. Rightly or wrongly, Pakistan harbors a feeling that India took unilateral advantage from the relative four-year calm in their relationship without conceding anything in return.

In a sensational interview with India's top television personality, Karan Thapar, on Thursday night, Pakistan's former foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri confirmed what many in New Delhi suspected, namely, that through back channel diplomacy, Islamabad and New Delhi had reached a broad understanding on contentious issues such as Sir Creek, Siachen and Kashmir as far back as two years ago.

The Indian prime minister was expected to visit Pakistan to conclude some of the agreements but the Indian side apparently began developing cold feet and it is "sheer bad luck", as Kasuri put it, that the momentum dissipated.

To quote Kasuri, "If the Prime Minister of India had come when we [Pakistan] thought he would, we would have actually signed it, and that would have created the right atmosphere for resolution of other disputes, particularly the issue of J&K [Jammu and Kashmir]. We needed the right atmosphere."

In other words, there is always a lurking danger that at some point, Holbrooke may barge into the Kashmir problem by way of addressing the core issues of regional security. The Bush administration had been kept constantly briefed by New Delhi on its back-channel discussions with Islamabad regarding Kashmir. Retracting from any commitments given to Pakistan becomes problematic at this stage.

At the same time, the Indian government has done nothing so far to sensitize domestic public opinion that such highly delicate discussions involving joint India-Pakistan governance of the Kashmir region have reached an advanced stage.

The rest of the article makes for very interesting reading as well, and I'll post it next, but this excerpt is related to the point I want to stress. Getting 'cold feet' on issues that have the potential for absolutely dramtic shifts in regional dynamics, for the better, was not a good move, considering that with the West's involvement in Afghanistan, and Pakistan's military constraints with respect to India because of these disputes, gives the West (especially the US) a huge stake and interest in peaceful resolution of these disputes.

This is now at least the second time in recent history that the Indian leadership has gotten 'cold feet', the first in Agra with Musharraf, and this may well have played into the calculus that Pakistan's sincerity was rea - we obviously have been making very real efforts towards resolving disputes and have kept our promise of putting a lid on the insurgency in Kashmir.

Rather than come up with convoluted conspiracy theories of Pakistani scheming, as the honorable Ambassador has done in this article, I believe India will be best served if it looks inward and tries to figure out why her leadership is incapable of approaching dispute resolution with sincerity, and continuously gets cold feet.
 

AgNoStiC MuSliM

ADVISORS
Jul 11, 2007
24,670
81
33,816
Country
Pakistan
Location
United States
India grapples with the Obama era
By M K Bhadrakumar

What prompted the spokesman of India's ruling party, Congress, to recommend that the Bharat Ratna - the "Jewel of India" - be bestowed on George W Bush, we might never know. India has conferred its highest civilian honor on only two foreigners, one of whom was Nelson Mandela.

The Congress politician apparently got carried away on a balmy winter day with nostalgia hanging heavily in the air, as he faced a select audience of Delhi's elite, who formed the gravy train of India-US "strategic partnership" in the Bush era.

Ironically, even as he spoke last Friday, a delegation was setting out from the United States for India to pay homage to Mahatma Gandhi, the great apostle of non-violence, who inspired Martin

Luther King, who in turn remains a constant source of inspiration for US President Barack Obama.

The bizarre coincidence was driven home when at a special ceremony at the US State Department marking the visit, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, "India is a reminder that the struggle for civil rights and justice has always been and continues to be a global mission; it knows no borders."

The two unconnected events underscored the dilemma facing India's policymakers as the Obama era gets under way. Indeed, it is an extraordinary statement that the first American delegation to visit India after Obama took office should be a "Gandhian" delegation. Is Obama "demilitarizing" India-US strategic cooperation? "Mil-to-mil" cooperation was at the core of US-India relationship during the past eight-year period. In recent years, India conducted more than 50 military exercises with the US.

All dressed up, nowhere to go


Yet a pall of gloom has descended on New Delhi's elite. There is a pervasive nostalgia for George W Bush. The Bush administration officials claimed that the US regarded India as the preponderant power in South Asia and as a key Asian player that would shape up to be a viable counterweight to China militarily. The expectation was that the US would extricate India from the morass of its South Asian neighborhood by arm-twisting Pakistan.

Under constant encouragement from the Bush administration, the Indian elite placed faith in the country's emergence as a global player. They began working "shoulder to shoulder" with the US, just as Bush's officials urged. Now, Indian strategists find themselves awkwardly placed - all dressed-up but there's nowhere right now for them to go.

Three factors have shaken up the Indian complacency. First, Indian strategists seriously underestimated the military stalemate that was developing in the war in Afghanistan and the consequent acute dependence of the US on Pakistan's cooperation. This may sound surprising, but the knowledge of Afghan affairs remains shockingly poor among Indian strategists.

Two, Indian strategists underestimated the gravity of the global financial crisis that erupted last year. They couldn't comprehend that the crisis would fundamentally change the world order. Even hard-nosed Indian strategists placed a touching faith in the "New American Century" project.

Three, the Indian establishment failed to grasp what Obama meant when he spoke of "change". The Indian skepticism about Obama's capacity to change US policies remained fairly widespread. The Indian establishment concluded that Obama would ultimately have to work within the box, hemmed in by America's political, foreign policy and security establishment. It failed to see that the US's capacity to sustain its global dominance was itself weakening and that necessitated radical changes in Obama's policies.

From this perspective, the past week offered a reality check. The visit by the newly appointed US Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Holbrooke, to the region underscored that Islamabad's support for the US war strategy in Afghanistan has become critical. The war is at a crucial stage and salvaging it appears increasingly difficult.

More to the point, given the overall fragility of the political situation in Pakistan, a stage is reached beyond which the US cannot "pressure" Pakistan. Therefore, in a change of approach, the US will have no choice but to work with Pakistan. In the coming period, as Holbrooke gradually opens the political track leading to an Afghan settlement, need of Pakistan's cooperation increases further.

Meanwhile, the revelation that the US Predator drones operate out of Pakistani bases underlines how closely Washington and Islamabad have been working. The US's acquiescence in the release of AQ Khan revealed the great latitude towards Pakistan's concerns. The Indian strategists who fancied that New Delhi was Washington's preferred partner in South Asia are stunned. Clearly, India is nowhere near as valuable an ally as Pakistan for the US for the present.

Looking ahead, Obama's decision on Wednesday approving a troop buildup in Afghanistan constitutes a defining moment. He has put his presidency on the firing line. From this week onward, Obama's war has begun. The war can well consume his presidency. Either he succeeds, or he gets mired in the war. Yet, the new US strategy is still in the making. Delhi takes note that it is at such a crucial juncture that the Pakistani army chief, General Parvez Kayani, has been invited to go across to Washington for consultations.

The message is clear: Washington will be in no mood to antagonize its Pakistani partner and Delhi is expected to keep tensions under check in its relations with Islamabad.

Dollar courting yuan


But there is another aspect in Obama's new foreign policy that worries India even more. Obama's China policy renders obsolete the Indian strategic calculus built around the US containment strategy. Hardly two to three years ago, the Bush administration encouraged India to put faith in a quadrilateral alliance of Asian democracies - the US, Japan, Australia and India - that would strive to set the rules for China's behavior in the region.

According to reports, State Department officials had originally proposed that India be included in the itinerary of Clinton's current first official tour abroad, but she struck it out. As things stand, Clinton meant every word of what she wrote last year in her Foreign Affairs article that "our [US] relationship with China will be the most important bilateral relationship in the world in this century".

In a major speech at the Asia Society in New York last Friday before embarking on her tour of Asia, Clinton said, "We believe that the United States and China can benefit from and contribute to each other's successes. It is in our interests to work harder to build on areas of common concern and shared opportunities". She argued for a "comprehensive dialogue" and a "broader agenda" with China.

The Washington Post cited State Department officials as saying, "It is symbolically important that Clinton is the first secretary of state in nearly 50 years to intensely focus his or her maiden voyage on Asia". The story is easily comprehensible. The US needs to have new opportunities to export more to China; it should persuade Beijing to accept a realistic dollar-yuan exchange rate; and, it should convince China to keep investing its money in America. But what is unfolding is also a phenomenal story insofar as a new chapter in their mutually dependent relationship is commencing where the two countries become equal partners in crisis. This was simply unthinkable.

Dennis Blair, the newly appointed director of national intelligence, in his testimony before the US senate intelligence committee on January 22, struck a fine balance when he said,

While the United States must understand China's military buildup - its extent, its technological sophistication and its vulnerabilities - in order to offset it, the intelligence community also needs to support policymakers who are looking for opportunities to work with Chinese leaders who believe that Asia is big enough for both of us and can be an Asia in which both countries can benefit as well as contribute to the common good.

However, this is precisely where a serious problem arises for India. In the Indian perception, South Asia and the Indian Ocean just aren't "big enough" for India and China.

Dragon encircles peacock


This was rubbed home when Chinese President Hu Jintao arrived in Port Louis, Mauritius, on Tuesday on the final lap of his latest odyssey to Africa. Hu nonchalantly handed out a generous US$1 billion aid package for Mauritius, which India traditionally regarded as its "sphere of influence" in the Indian Ocean. No doubt, it was an audacious gesture by Beijing to a country the majority of whose 1.3 million population are people of Indian origin - at a time when China too faces an economic crisis and analysts say anywhere up to 40 million migrant workers may lose their jobs this year.

Arguably, Beijing regards Mauritius as a value-added platform between China and Africa from where its entrepreneurs could optimally perform. But Hu has convinced the Indian strategic community about China's "encirclement" policy towards India. A leading Indian right-wing daily commented that Hu's visit was "anything but ordinary ... It underscores Beijing's relentless thrust to secure a permanent naval foothold in the western Indian Ocean ... That, of course, would only come at the expense of the Indian navy, which has been the principal external security partner of Mauritius all these decades".

It is precisely such hubris that gets punctured by the shift in the Obama administration's new priorities in the Far East and southwest Asia. A difficult period of adjustment lies ahead for Indian policymakers. India needs good relations with the US. At any rate, the India-US relationship is on an irreversible trajectory of growth. There is a "bipartisan" consensus in both countries that the relationship is in each other's vital interests. But the US's current strategic priorities in the region and India's expectations are diverging. Given the criticality of Pakistan in the US geo-strategy, Obama administration will be constrained to correct the Bush administration's "tilt" towards India.

Kashmir beckons

New Delhi pulled out all the stops when rumors surfaced that Holbrooke's mandate might include the Kashmir problem. Obama paid heed to Indian sensitivities. But at a price. It compels India to curtail its own excessive instincts in recent years to seek US intervention in keeping India-Pakistan tensions in check.

In short, New Delhi will have to pay much greater attention to its bilateral track with Pakistan. And, of course, Pakistan will expect India to be far more flexible. Rightly or wrongly, Pakistan harbors a feeling that India took unilateral advantage from the relative four-year calm in their relationship without conceding anything in return.

In a sensational interview with India's top television personality, Karan Thapar, on Thursday night, Pakistan's former foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri confirmed what many in New Delhi suspected, namely, that through back channel diplomacy, Islamabad and New Delhi had reached a broad understanding on contentious issues such as Sir Creek, Siachen and Kashmir as far back as two years ago.

The Indian prime minister was expected to visit Pakistan to conclude some of the agreements but the Indian side apparently began developing cold feet and it is "sheer bad luck", as Kasuri put it, that the momentum dissipated.

To quote Kasuri, "If the Prime Minister of India had come when we [Pakistan] thought he would, we would have actually signed it, and that would have created the right atmosphere for resolution of other disputes, particularly the issue of J&K [Jammu and Kashmir]. We needed the right atmosphere."

In other words, there is always a lurking danger that at some point, Holbrooke may barge into the Kashmir problem by way of addressing the core issues of regional security. The Bush administration had been kept constantly briefed by New Delhi on its back-channel discussions with Islamabad regarding Kashmir. Retracting from any commitments given to Pakistan becomes problematic at this stage.

At the same time, the Indian government has done nothing so far to sensitize domestic public opinion that such highly delicate discussions involving joint India-Pakistan governance of the Kashmir region have reached an advanced stage.

Thus, in a manner of speaking, with Holbrooke's arrival in the region this past week, the clock began ticking on the Kashmir issue. Pakistan will incrementally mount pressure that Obama must insist on India moving forward on a settlement of the Kashmir problem in the overall interests of peace and regional stability.

And New Delhi will remain watchful. Holbrooke's visit to New Delhi on Monday was kept low-key. The Indian media fawned on any mid-level official calling from the Bush administration, but Holbrooke was tucked away as if under quarantine. And no wonder; there could be many among New Delhi's elite who feel nostalgic for the tranquility and predictability of the Bush era.

Ambassador M K Bhadrakumar was a career diplomat in the Indian Foreign Service. His assignments included the Soviet Union, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Germany, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Kuwait and Turkey.

Asia Times Online :: Asian News, Business and Economy.
 

AgNoStiC MuSliM

ADVISORS
Jul 11, 2007
24,670
81
33,816
Country
Pakistan
Location
United States
These analysts are protesting too much, too early. Reminds me of a sitcom girlfriend who keep waiting for her boyfriend to call the day after...

I agree, the doom and gloom barely a month into the Obama presidency is far too premature.

Nonetheless, I am interested in what you think about the fact that the Indian leadership seems to perpetually get cold feet when it comes to resolving disputes with Pakistan. And given that the West obviously is aware of these contacts and has a vested interest in their success, whether this backtracking is harming India's image and bolstering Pakistan's?
 

RedBaron

FULL MEMBER
Sep 28, 2008
201
0
81
I agree, the doom and gloom barely a month into the Obama presidency is far too premature.
IMHO, Indian analysts are overly pessimistic about Obama govt intentions in Kashmir and Pak analysts are overly optimistic. Why?

Consider foreign policy issues facing Obama (not even mentioning US economy):
- Exit from Iraq
- Continuing involvement in Afghanistan
- Iran inching closer to building a bomb (acc. to IAEA, already has enough enriched material for one weapon)
- Impending power struggle in N Korea due to an increasingly weak Kim Il Jong, with intensifying tantrums against S Korea
- Ever-present Hamas/Israel/Hezbollah situation
Now where does Kashmir figure on his agenda? Does it compare to any of the above? Not really, unless GoP does an excellent job linking Kashmir issue to WoT and Afghanistan, which it has not done so far...

Nonetheless, I am interested in what you think about the fact that the Indian leadership seems to perpetually get cold feet when it comes to resolving disputes with Pakistan. And given that the West obviously is aware of these contacts and has a vested interest in their success, whether this backtracking is harming India's image and bolstering Pakistan's?

GoI believes that its image is not harmed unless US throws its weight behind GoP on Kashmir which is not likely anytime soon as clearly signalled by the clarification that Holbrooke does not have Kashmir on his agenda.

GoI knows it has breathing space and is using the current FATA/Swat instability to its advantage by making up for lost time in Kashmir: new rail link, new international air terminal, new Chief Minister, new development projects, etc.

Pakistan's image is shaped by issues other than Kashmir so far. Unless it cleans up FATA/Swat and mends relations with Afghanistan gov't, its arguments on Kashmir will not have many takers internationally, but that's just my opinion...
 

fatman17

PDF THINK TANK: CONSULTANT
Apr 24, 2007
31,423
88
37,590
Country
Pakistan
Location
Pakistan
These analysts are protesting too much, too early. Reminds me of a sitcom girlfriend who keep waiting for her boyfriend to call the day after...

why is India worried!
They have a nuke deal - they are signing mega military deals with the US - obama has said that the US-India relationship is strong and strategic - i would be jumping for joy:yahoo: or is this a ......
 

Flintlock

ELITE MEMBER
Oct 7, 2007
6,176
0
772
why is India worried!
They have a nuke deal - they are signing mega military deals with the US - obama has said that the US-India relationship is strong and strategic - i would be jumping for joy:yahoo: or is this a ......

They expected much more obviously. They wanted a date at the Ritz, so were disappointed by Pizza Hut.
 

Flintlock

ELITE MEMBER
Oct 7, 2007
6,176
0
772
India has managed to handle kashmir when the US was vehemently ant-India, and had zero global clout.
So when our cards are so good, it seems rather strange to complain.

Howeve, the concerns in the articles are worrying, that must be said. One shouldn't get complacent.
 

idune

ELITE MEMBER
Dec 14, 2008
13,663
-40
12,094
Country
Bangladesh
Location
United States
India has managed to handle kashmir when the US was vehemently ant-India, and had zero global clout.
So when our cards are so good, it seems rather strange to complain.

You just knocked on the door of real reason why Indian analysts like ex diplomat are restless. But hope you can find out really why, good luck.
 

Energon

SENIOR MEMBER
Oct 26, 2007
1,077
0
288
Nonetheless, I am interested in what you think about the fact that the Indian leadership seems to perpetually get cold feet when it comes to resolving disputes with Pakistan.
Unfortunately I don't have the time to read all the material on this thread, and my response is only limited to this important and interesting question stated in AM's post.
Two critical things:
1. India cannot negotiate anything with Pakistan under the threat of terrorism. The reason the diplomatic efforts with Musharraf were going well is because he was able to clamp down on the cross border terrorism after 2002 thereby giving the dialogue some credibility as being an effort made by the respective leaderships of two nation states motivated by national interest; as opposed to one where the main motivator is fear of terrorism/jihadi violence. Mind you, this isn't an India specific policy. No self respecting nation will allow terrorism to shape their policy for the obvious reasons.

2. National security always supersedes everything else. Even if a serving Pakistani leader is able to curb terrorism, the concern among the Indian security circles always remains... has the terrorism really been dismantled or merely suppressed for ad hoc purposes? Unfortunately the answer always seems to be the latter, and these concerns on the Indian side are always validated. The bottom line is that no country in its right mind will ever willingly open its borders to another state which has an effervescent terrorism problem akin to Pakistan's. And this is the basis of the world's common opinion, not some misplaced favoritism for India or a desire to target Pakistan, sure there will be the occasional comment against India for the sake of looking objective; but the bottom line is clear.

And given that the West obviously is aware of these contacts and has a vested interest in their success, whether this backtracking is harming India's image and bolstering Pakistan's?
What you have to realize is that this "image" issue (a big obsession on Pakistani side) is actually a non sequitur. As long as Pakistan remains the hub of jihadi terrorism (a vetted fact) nobody will entertain bilateral arrangements which will put their own national security at critical risk, nor can you fault anyone for either outwardly or discreetly supporting this stance. I assure you the Western diplomats are well aware of this limitation.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Total: 1, Members: 0, Guests: 1)


Top Bottom