7 years ago
Sanjeev Miglani with Reuters gives us the news about the visit of British Foreign Secretary David Miliband to India.
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 …
But this may well be a pointer to a stiffening mood in India as it heads into an election that could bring the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party into power. And then all bets would be off as to what would be India’s policy towards Pakistan.
Over the weekend, the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Lal Krishna Advani gathered a bunch of military chiefs, security analysts and party bosses, and the verdict from that meeting was India had been too soft on Pakistan.
“After Mumbai, any self-respecting government would have adopted a much more robust response which alone could compel Pakistan to not only bring to book those behind the incident but also to wind down the infrastructure of terror,” the BJP said in a statement. “Instead India adopted the mildest of response, not like an emerging global player.”
Thanks to Miglani for a good report. So that the import of what Miliband has done in India doesn’t escape, let’s rehearse a bit.
Miliband has taken the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India, recently conducted out of Karachi, Pakistan, and connected them to the solution to Kashmir. This is simply breathtaking. In order to placate Pakastan and ensure regional stability, Miliband counsels coming to an understanding over Kashmir.
But the fact that such a tactic would encourage exactly the opposite escapes Miliband. We have discussed the Pakistani duplicity before, where the ISI and Pakistan Army has used and is currently using the Taliban as a buffer for what it sees as its real enemies, Afghanistan and especially India. Coming to a “mutual understanding” over Kashmir, especially as it relates to the connection of Mumbai with Kashmir, would only encourage the strategy of use of the Taliban and the terror tactics they promulgate. When success is achieved, the action is confirmed.
Regardless of whether a mutual understanding is achieved over Kashmir, the connection of it to the Mumbai attacks is the worst possible foreign policy imaginable for Britain or any Western country. And what Miliband accomplished was not the connection of Kashmir to Mumbai, but rather, the hardening of India and its worldview.
Nice job. The law of unintended consequences. Learn it. As for Miliband, the Brits have an administration that perfectly follows in the footsteps of Neville Chamberlain. Chamberlain didn’t think about unintended consequences either.