let me first take the opportunity to commend you on a terrific post, very well argued indeed.
To be honest, there is little fault that I can find anywhere, and I agree with you generally.
My contention was a fundamental change in our world-view.
Some aspects of our world-view would be, e.g.
- We have to act honorably, magnanimously, forgivingly with our neighbors. Dharma
- We allow others to sit in judgment over us, especially our enemies. We are an open book!
- We look at problems legalistically. Truth prevails!
- We are overly apologetic. Equality & Justice
- Indian lives are cheap. Fatalism; Atma is Amar
- We take the abuse. Misjudgments & Communication Problems
- Gandhi ji & Non-Violence. No retribution, No retaliation
We act that way, but the foreign propaganda (read Pakistani, Anglo-American, etc.) is always able to manipulate our actions differently - exaggerate our problems, find alternate theories behind our motivation, focus on the anxiety of our neighbors, etc.
We sigh and say, "People just don't understand us"!
This is a world-view which has paralyzed us in our dealings with Pakistan! IMHO, we need new pillars for our world-view. Something on the lines of:
- We are always right, always!
- Every single Indian life is precious, as precious as the whole nation
- We always take our pound of flesh.
- We are not afraid of monsters. We are the biggest monster!
Now to your post Rudradev ji, for which I have to return to the currently existing world-view.
Not at all. You are recommending the punitive seizure of Pakistani land, to which Pakistan has legal rights under international law. I am pointing out that we are not even capable of reclaiming Indian land currently under the illegal occupation of Pakistan, to which India has legal rights under international law.
Punitive seizure of Pakistani land can only take place on Pakistani land. If it is our land we seize, it would hardly be punitive.
Why punitive? Because Pakistan has been uncooperative in handing over the culprits of 26/11 and other terror attacks in India. Even if one doubts whether the Pakistani Establishment itself sanctioned the terrorist activities, it cannot be denied that they are guilty of protecting the culprits, protecting the terrorists. Wasn't there something about, those providing safe havens to terrorists, would themselves be considered terrorists. So by international law, Pakistan should be punished for providing sanctuary to terrorists.
Have the United Nations acted upon this matter? If not, shouldn't India act upon it.
If Pakistan is guilty of terrorism, or providing sanctuary to terrorists, then it is Pakistan who has declared war on India. Under the UN Charter, every country has the right to self-defense. India is only responding to a war declared by Pakistan.
Very much the same fruit, albeit on different trees.
However, you propose confiscating the high-hanging fruit from the tree in our neighbour's yard... when we cannot even enforce our claim to the lower-hanging fruit from the tree in our own yard, to which the neighbour has been helping himself with impunity all these years. This is simply not practicable.
I would hardly argue, that we should not kick the neighbor out of our yard, but taking his fruit would hurt him more. If picking his high-hanging fruit is what is needed to get the neighbor to rethink squashing the flowers in our garden, then it is the high-hanging fruit we should go for.
If we are to seize any land from Pakistan it must first be our own land that they illegally occupy... then at the very least, we will have a case under international law to back up our intent to possess that land in perpetuity.
Our case under international law, should be plain and simple. Stop Terrorism. Either UN can impose its will and make Pakistan stop, or we take the initiative.
In fact we can demand from UN to set up a UN Commission in Pakistan with full authority to investigate all acts and all actors who indulge in anti-Indian activities. Would the UN put up such a commission right now? No. Why not? Because terrorism against India is not a burning issue. It has to be brought to the table in the UN, but not in conjunction with Kashmir, but rather with Pakistani Land, that India would have appropriated 'illegally'.
International Law is a piece of paper, when nobody is doing anything to push it, to find justice. As long as we don't push the issue with Pak-sponsored terrorism, no international law is going to stop Pakistan from going about it.
Till now, India is apprehensive about pushing this thing too far, anxious that it would get mixed up with Kashmir to the detriment of India, knowing that there are so many anti-India parties on the UNSC. That is why India needs to change the game. Instead of putting our jewels as a wager (our rights to J&K), let's put Pakistani jewels as a wager.
But our core problem is our nature. We have come to terms with losing lives at the hands of Pakistanis. If we don't work ourselves into madness, the international community nor international law would take it as a crime. It is we who have to tell the international community that they have failed us, and not that we have failed the international law.
We would in fact be glad if the international law takes its course - that Pakistan is brought to book, that we don't need to sit on 'Pakistani Land'. We have to define what the problem is, and not allow others to define it for us. But if we take everything is maya
, and the loss of our citizen's lives are not fighting for, then we allow others to define the problem - bring in Kashmir all the time.
At the moment, India cannot give Pakistan anything, which would make them rethink their strategy of a thousand cuts. The number of Pakistan-sponsored terrorist violence in India has probably reached far higher than that figure. If we occupy their land, at least we will have something to give them for handing us the terrorists hiding in Pakistan, the ones on the paper lists we so love to push under their faces and which they throw back at us, after blowing their nose into it.
We are stuck in the wrong status quo - the Kashmir-Terrorism Status Quo. The initiative lies with them. They tell us, "Give us Kashmir, we will reduce terrorism". The initiative should lie with us. We should tell them, "Give us the terrorists, we will return your land." The pressure would be ours to control.
- Apples: Compensation for damages, due to Pakistan's current state policy of terrorism
- Oranges: Historical issue in cryostasis
The political class, and I guess, the majority of the people, in India has already come to terms with living in State with a birth defect (PoK), for a number of reasons. The people are however not happy with the ongoing terrorism campaign coming from next door.
I would say this is inaccurate. If the political class and the people of India were content with the idea of POK and NA belonging to Pakistan, we wouldn't have parliamentary resolutions affirming that these are parts of India. We wouldn't maintain an expensive and difficult troop deployment in Siachen which is nowhere near the LOC. The establishment in New Delhi very well recognizes the strategic value of the parts of J&K under illegal Pakistani occupation.
No GOI has publicly
offered Pakistan a permanent settlement based on LOC=IB, and with good reason... it's against the law, against the Indian Constitution, and if any government openly took the position that they were willing to cede 97,000 sq. km. of Indian land to Pakistan in perpetuity, they would not last very long. It also flouts the Instrument of Accession, on which basis the WHOLE of J&K (as it was before October 1947) acceded to India. If we are now going to say "ok ok, you Pakis can keep 1/3 of the state" does it not undermine the legal basis for our claim on any part of the state?
Only IG in the immediate aftermath of Bangladesh liberation had amassed enough political capital to survive offering a permanent LOC=IB solution to Pakistan; and that one chance was blown by the Pakistanis themselves.
The prevailing situation is that Indian political classes have determined that reclaiming POK and NA is too potentially expensive an option to actively pursue at the moment
, that our resources are best spent elsewhere at this time; and the people of India largely agree with this.
This is a far cry from either the political classes or the Indian people coming to terms with the permanent Pakistani occupation of one-third of J&K.
J&K is anything but unrelated to the current policy of Pakistani stat terrorism in India. It is anything but a historical issue in cryostasis
; it is the
single most effective rallying cry for ALL Pakistani jihadi groups engaging in terrorism against India. The people and political class of India know this as well as anybody.
So at the moment, the fruit on the low-hanging tree may be low-hanging but the tree is considered too far away. But terrorist attacks in India are thorns piercing our society and are very close to us. So what tree are we going to bark at for that?
you have only elaborated on the shape and size and other specifications of the cryostasis chamber. Of course, for Pakistan Kashmir is the core issue
and not in cryostasis. But for us it has become one. Why? Because we are not actively doing much to change.
What is the use of having something de-jure (which is also controversial in many circles) and not de-facto.? Unless of course, we are just biding our time, when we can make it defacto, at some appropriate time, when we are strong enough. But that too does not seem to be the case, as we have seen, that MMS was striving for a different solution with Musharraf, and even IG might have considered the option of "LoC == IB". So it is not as if we are keeping the J&K meat in deep freeze for later on, when we have the right marinade, the right pan and a stove!
The rights to low-hanging fruit from our own tree, is useless when our political class has lost the appetite for that fruit. As for the high-hanging fruit, it may be something in our reach if the spikes of terror acts on us make us jump high enough.
Land grab in Pakistan for every terror attack in India is to serve as a form of compensation/retribution/justice. It is supposed to hurt the terror perpetrators, where it hurts them the most, in the loss of H&D. It is not primarily for the sake of land itself.
Honestly, I believe the over-emphasis on H&D is often a case of us BRF-ites getting carried away with our own rhetoric.
Just because the TSPA and RAPE constantly mount soapboxes and claim H&D as a rationale for their demands, does *not* mean that a loss of H&D is actually something that could actually harm them. It isn't. We think, that because they talk about "H&D-Vech&D" all the time, it must be an important determinant of their policies and a force to reckon with in their internal political structure. It isn't.
If it were, the Pakis would never have rolled over for Armitage on 9/12/2001. They would not allow Predators to refuel in Pakistan, take off from Pakistani airbases and bomb Pakistani citizens. They would not have allowed themselves to be a condom for the United States during the Cold War. They would not be the rentier state that they have been throughout their history. No nation which is actually
concerned with its Honor and Dignity would have done these things.
H&D isn't a genuine political commodity at all, but a tool for the TSPA to brandish about for a number of other purposes (detailed below.)
Why do I say this? Because loss of H&D has never, ever hurt the leadership of TSPA, or compromised its political power.
Tikka Khan lost Bangladesh and went on to become Minister of Defense. Musharraf lost Kargil and went on to become President. No TSPA jernail has ever suffered for the loss of H&D inflicted on Pakistan by India, because the TSPA looks after its own and the RAPE collaborate willingly in this.
No, H&D is nothing more than a pretext, an excuse, a contrived fabrication that the Pakis (mainly TSPA) use for various other purposes. Such as:
1) Begging: Like Bhutto at Simla "please jee, don't force us to make a commitment on Kashmir jee, what about our H&D jee."
2) Making a case to depose inconvenient civilian leaders: like Nawaz Sharif getting blamed for Pakistan's H&D loss in Kargil when in fact it was entirely a TSPA operation.
3) More begging: Like Kiyani and co. to the US today. "See we have spent so much on your war of terror, we are doing so much for you, we have angered our own people. Let us airlift our assets out of Kunduz no. Get the Indians out of Afghanistan no. Give us F-16s no. Make the Indians negotiate on Kashmir no. It will help our H&D."
4) Conjuring up a justification to do something they wanted to do anyway: "What! The Dirty Kaffirs of India have conducted a nuclear test of five bums! Now we will conduct a nuclear test of six bums! For our H&D onlee!" (Also note "We will eat grass but we will build a nuclear bomb." That was also a use of H&D as a political pretext. The TSPA/RAPE themselves would never have to eat grass, and it didn't matter to them if the Mango Abdul had to eat grass, so H&D was used as the pretext for asking the Mango Abdul to eat grass while TSPA/RAPE developed the bums they wanted.)
you amply make your point, that H&D is a political tool that TSPA uses, and it knows how to manipulate it well.
Perhaps I should have used the word 'authority' instead 'H&D'.
At the moment, as I see it, RAPE and Islamists live in an uncomfortable house called Pakistani Army. The reason for the tension is not India, because on that both concur, but rather RAPE's willingness to cooperate with America. It is this cooperation, that keeps Pakistan afloat. I think, the Islamists allow the RAPE to head the TSPA, simply because RAPE claim that they can deliver the goods - money and arms from USA and pressure on India.
If the RAPE generals take a severe hit from India through the loss of land, I believe this understanding between the RAPE and the Islamists would rupture. The RAPE Generals would not be able to deliver on India, and the openly Islamists would push them out. This case could very well be accelerated further, as money from USA dries up, as US starts to leave Afghanistan. I believe this fissure was less pronounced earlier, like in 1971.
Several here on BRF are of the view, that Pakistan should become a problem for the whole world and not just for India.
Every new day, India holds on to this piece of land in Pakistan, be it even a couple of hundred square kilometers, conquered in response to a terror act in India, would be a day, when the Pakistani Army would be hauled over the coals. By the right-wing for losing a fight to the kafirs, and by the people and media for precipitating a clash leading to a loss of land.
I am deeply skeptical about this. If H&D were a genuine political commodity, a factual determinant of anything about Pakistani policy or internal politics... like the Bushido code of Imperial Japan for example... then I might believe it. But it isn't.
Loss of H&D has never, ever been used to harm or erode the power of the Pakistan army (the institution which has been chiefly responsible for all the most major losses of Pakistani "H&D" so far.) The collective resentment that will be caused across all sections of Paki society over a loss of H&D to India, IMHO far exceeds the disruptive effect of other groups within Pakistan blaming the TSPA for that H&D loss. If the SDRE Kaffirs grab land it will be a rallying point, not a source of internal dispute, for Paki society.
a) Somehow manages to confiscate Pakistani land at what Indian leaders consider a reasonable cost and risk to itself... which isn't something I can imagine;
b) Somehow manages to hold this land at reasonable cost to itself;
History shows us that the last people who will be blamed for this in Pakistan are the TSPA. They cannot be judged for H&D loss... they are the judges who condemn and blame other parties for H&D loss, who cite H&D loss as a pretext for blackmailing other countries into giving them what they want. H&D is a tool in the TSPA's hands, and neither the Islamist right-wingers nor the Mango Abdul currently have anywhere near the kind of power required to wrest that tool away and use it against the TSPA itself.
Nobody will haul the TSPA over the coals. The TSPA will be the ones shouting "H&D! H&D!" as a rallying cry that will inspire the right wing Islamists, the Mango Abduls AND the Pakistani media to put aside their differences and unite against the Kaffir Yindoo who aggressively and illegally occupies their land. This will abrogate whatever fissiparous forces are currently destabilizing Pakistan, to a very large extent.
Meanwhile, we would have the whole international community breathing down our necks for illegally occupying Pakistani land in response to non-state aggression. We would give the TSPA a new excuse to seek weaponry, and the 3.5 friends (and others) a renewed excuse to supply weaponry to the TSPA.
We would receive lectures and possibly sanctions, and achieve a whole new level of equal-equal hyphenation from an international perspective ..."India claims Pakistan is in illegal occupation of Kashmir, while Pakistan claims India is in illegal occupation of Kashmir PLUS blah-blah-blah land seized by India, allegedly in response to a terrorist attack by non-state actors."
No great loss really, but on the other hand, not much use at all.
There are some assumptions I have made here, with regard to the international reaction:
- The world after 9/11 is a different place, where terrorist danger emanating from this region is well-known.
- There is a precedence in Operation Enduring Freedom
- There is a new Government in Britain, a Tory Government, not overly dependent on the votes of Pakistanis, et. al
- The Indian diaspora in the West is far more influential today as in yesteryears.
- Indian economy is far more robuster today
- There is a budgetary allocation in the Pakistani Budget for Jamaat-ud-Dawa, an organisation recognized as a terrorist organization by the UN
- The extent or rather lack of it of Pakistani cooperation to India on 26/11 is also widely known.
The rest is dependent on how Indians show their anger at 26/11 and present their case. Secondly there is a limit to "What if" thinking.
As far as hyphenation is concerned, it is illusory. India today is not the same India in the history books. Is there a hyphenation between USA and Afghanistan, or USA and Iraq? Yes and No. The power difference between India and Pakistan may not be that pronounced, but it is still there. Secondly it would not be a bad idea if the core issue changes between India and Pakistan - instead of Kashmir-Terrorism, it becomes Pakistani Land vs. Terrorism. Kashmir can in fact be pushed to the background because of this.
As far as the reaction in Pakistan is concerned, in my humble opinion, TSPA would only be able to mobilize Pakistani opinion only to a limited extent.
- The mango abdul will cry foul for two months and then turn his attention back to every day living
- If Pakistan goes crying to USA, USA too would put forward their list of people they want, so the honeymoon between the TSPA generals and the Islamists would not last that long, so the current dynamics may persist, or be even strengthened.
- There is no reason to believe, that the Islamists would not think, that Pakistani generals lost to India because they were weak, and should be replaced. In 2010 would the Islamists be willing to fight under the TSPA Generals or would they rather fight under their own flag?
- There is an Islamic constituency in Pakistan, which is not happy with the Generals. Wouldn't they take this opportunity to weaken the TSPA still further, enough to usurp power from within or without?
Perhaps India should also consider, "So what?"
For all in India who think, there is a peace constituency in Pakistan and it needs to be strengthened, this is the way to go about it.
I humbly disagree. It seems to me that it would be the wrong way to go about it. Time and again, TSPA effectively silences any "peace constituency" in Pakistan by citing Indian aggression. Our occupation of Pakistani land would give TSPA a bonanza of fuel to feed the national paranoia about India and thereby consolidate their own position.
Do you really think the "peace constituency" will be able to convince the Mango Abdul (or any other class of Pakistanis) that the loss of land to India was actually TSPA's fault? This is not a society that has ever shown itself to be capable of honest introspection.
Never underestimate the TSPA's capacity for spin, or the gullibility of other classes of Pakis to succumb to that spin. Don't misconstrue the TSPA's degree of control over the media and Paki public opinion.
The magnitude of the TSPA's falsification of history, such as "we won the 1965 war", or "we were never involved in Kargil", is matched only by the willingness of the Paki people to swallow that spin via doublethink. The level of delusion endemic to that society is truly Orwellian in nature.
There is also the view in Pakistan, that the Army Generals are a bunch of munafiqs and gadaars. The drones also do some propaganda.
Of course, the TSPA or their sympathizers do control most of the media in Pakistan, but it is still possible to get India's word across, which should be something as simple as:
- "Stop invading our space with your terrorists, and we will stop invading your space with our soldiers"
- Give us the terrorists, and we will give you your land
The point is India does not need to keep the land, if Pakistan is willing to deliver on the terrorists and put a stop to their infrastructure.
a) A Land Grab in Pakistan would be a bargaining chip to force the UN to set up a UN Commission to oversee the closing of anti-India terrorist networks in Pakistan. International Law.
b) A Land Grab in Pakistan would be to force Pakistan to hand over the terrorists who committed terrorist crimes in India and to close down their networks in Pakistan.
c) PR Line: No terrorism => No land grab as compensation