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Pakistan Army’s Shift to Sub-Conventional Warfare


Sub-conventional or unconventional warfare includes anything that lies between the exclusion of ‘peace-talks’ and under the threshold of war. Defence analysts and experts from around the world argue that limited conflicts are likely to cause serious threat to states in the future. The Pakistan army has finally realized ‘home grown’ militancy as the major threat to the country. The military rightly calls such low intensity skirmishes, a product of ‘foreign proxies’ in the country. Before this the focus of Pakistan army had converged at conventional warfare. Even the foreign policy of Pakistan had been overshadowed by the threat from the Eastern border. The recognition being given to non-state actors and unidentified militant groups in the border regions of Pakistan can help it to combat the menace of ‘extremism’.

Pakistan’s association with extremism, militancy, jihadist elements has fomented since it entered the war against terrorism after 9/11. This dragged the country into more complex matrices like ‘bigotry’ and ‘sectarian clashes’. What the interchangeable civilian and military autocracies failed to do for the past 65 years was the identification of root causes associated with specific extremist organizations operating within the premises of the country. Without confronting the prevalent sub-conventional threats, the army took the perilous path of assisting the United States. The implications are quite obvious today as extremism is growing at an exponential rate in Pakistan. Not only this, but our image as a country has been tarnished and distorted in an unfair manner.

Another mistake on part of our ‘defence-military strategists’ has been the strict attention to the Eastern border. Considering India as enemy number 1 wasn’t akin to intelligible defence of the country on all the fronts. In 2010, the perceived arch-rival and immediate neighbour, India also adopted a doctrine of some similar nature. Named as ‘Cold Start’ (CS), this doctrine of Indian military stressed upon countering ‘proxy war’. Mostly it was interpreted as a strategic deployment against terrorists activities unleashing from India. Even if it was, the indoctrination of such a concept was militarily correct. On the other hand, as Stephen P Cohen has perceptively highlighted that Pakistan had always negated the need for sub-conventional warfare by ‘launching a people’s war against India’. Consequently, the country failed to segregate between the conventional and sub conventional threats. It had long been engaged in attempt to comply with the ‘mullahs’ in order to defeat home grown militants. Later on, the foreign intervention found the Pakistani soil ripe for nurturing the uninterrupted extremism.

This doctrine should have been introduced earlier on when the General (retd) Pervez Musharraf left the country. It was largely during the Musharraf era that the country wavered to and fro between militancy and extremism at one end and the foreign proxy wars at the other. The latest stance taken by the military is a hopeful sign for the nation. However, the essential thing is that all the defence institutions should be on the same page for its implementation. There should be multi-prong strategy to train Pakistani army for counter-insurgency, without forgetting the conventional warfare. As Major Asim Saleem Bajwa aptly states that: “Army prepares for all forms of threats. Sub-conventional threat is a reality and is a part of a threat matrix faced by our country. But it doesn’t mean that the conventional threat has receded.” This explicitly depicts the army’s concern for non-state actors in Balochistan along with the expansion of defence from Eastern to Western borders. This approach has become more relevant after the overt raid of US NAVY SEALs in Abbottabad.
The army has signalled towards the Western threat as well while explaining the new doctrine.

Military needs to assess the immediate concerns for accoutring army men with the long-standing significance and intellectual dimension of sub conventional warfare. Historically, the lessons should have been learnt after the tragic events of 1971 when East Pakistan Rifles coupled with conspirators instigating Bengalis converted a sub conventional threat into a conventional war. But as it is said: “better late than never”

English: Contrasting Conventional & Irregular ...

English: Contrasting Conventional & Irregular Warfare (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Posted by on January 12, 2013 in Political Ticker

 

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Pakistan in ‘India Today’ During 2012 – Part 4


Independence dayAugust 20, 2012 Edition

An imaginary dialogue conducted between Gandhi of India and Jinnah of Pakistan was published in the Independence special edition of India Today. The conversation was written by the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi and a former governor of West Bengal, Gopal Krishna Gandhi.

During the discussion Gandhi laments at divided India and the present situation of the Indians. Where as, Jinnah wasn’t happy for he wanted only Pakistanis to live in Pakistan, not Hindus and Muslims.

Selected dialogues of the imaginary conversation:

Mohandaas Karamchand Gandhi (MKG) I hate seeing my face grinning away on paper money when millions of my people are poor, malnutritioned, exploited… But so is your picture up on every office wall in Pakistan…
Muhammad Ali Jinnah (MAJ) So much that consumed our time, our energy, our life, seems so utterly pointless now. What did we fight for and fight each other for…? To see prime ministers… former prime ministers… would-be prime ministers… assassinated… terrorists at our neck… rank corruption… misgovernance… And nuclear warheads…

Mohandaas Karamchand Gandhi I know! The rise of religious bigotry in both countries… the brutalisation of women in the name of orthodoxy… I sometimes wonder if we are returning to the Middle Ages… The levels of violence in our region are unbelievable… direct violence and disguised violence… exploitation… Money rules everything… it is killing all human compassion… We have to do something about all this.

Muhammad Ali Jinnah Remember, we are both dead to that world, Mr Gandhi, stone dead. We are just phantoms… phantoms of the imagination… in this Realm of Un-being… not real beings…
These solutions are discussed between them:

MKGandhi We cannot watch idly!
MAJinnah Your methods of civil disobedience have become commonplace in India… a mockery…
MKGandhi Has your call of ‘Islam in danger’ not returned in unexpected ways? But no recriminations, please… there is a new goal for us, Quaid-e-Azam. We have to ensure that innocents do not die again on our land whether as a result of riots or terror or war. We must get India and Pakistan and Bangladesh to outlaw war.
MAJinnah What about Kashmir?
MKGandhi Let us meet in Srinagar. Let there be a summit at Dara Shukoh‘s Pari Mahal, to inaugurate a new chapter… not replacing the lines of the Partition but redeeming them… Let Kashmir become the world’s capital for conserving nature… I did not know that word everyone uses now… ‘ecology’… but our physical environment needs to be saved from man’s greed. The way things are going, mining, cutting trees, drawing water from deep inside the land, digging, digging, deeper and deeper… very soon there will be nothing left, our forests, our rivers… our air…our water… will stink… Kashmir can show a way out to the world… not just to us… And say with Jahangir from there… If ever there can be a Heaven on Earth… it has to be here… here…
MAJinnah No mushiness, please.
MKGandhi And let us have a festival of music there… sufi music… Kabir’s songs… And Ramdhun… Ishvar Allah Tere Naam…Let India and Pakistan announce from a Srinagar summit a subcontinental plan for ecological wisdom… called the Srinagar Code…along with a de-nuclearisation programme… an exchange of prisoners… a treaty not to violate borders…let India hear loud and clear from Pakistan that it will have nothing to do with terrorists… Let India hear the truth about the Bombay attack… Bombay was special for you… Quaid-e-Azam… I will whisper into Delhi’s ears that the gracious home of yours in Bombay belongs to you… India should not be small-minded about it… If I had a house in Karachi… or Jawahar had one in Lahore… would India not want it? Quaid…your eyes are filmed over…
MAJinnah Are yours… dry?

English: Gandhi and Jinnah in Bombay, Septembe...

English: Gandhi and Jinnah in Bombay, September 1944. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

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Pakistan in ‘India Today’ During 2012- Part 3


Messpot or Despots

July 2, 2012 Edition ‘India Today

Cover stories: *Messpot of Despots *Why Pakistan Failed as a Sate?

*Messpot of Despots
Qaswar Abbas in Islamabad and Sandeep Unnithan in New Delhi

The article labels the sacking of Prime Minister Yousaf Raza as one of the ‘most watched’ television show in Pakistan. Qaswar and Sandeep formulate the opinion that an adamant judiciary, corrupt politicians and journalists compromising the prime values of truth and impartiality, steered the nation towards a brittle democratic structure. It discusses the plated interview of Malik Riaz that erupted debates about ‘media accountability’ in the country.

Messpot of Deposts throws light upon the following challenges being faced by Pakistan

– Sectarian violence

– Faltering economy

– Wavering ties with the US

In addition to this, it rightly inducts the thesis that Gillani was enjoying a ‘borrowed time’ as a premier because he had blatantly defied the orders of the apex court. The leaked video of property tycoon ‘Malik Riaz’ has been presented as a matter of media ethics. In addition to this, Qaswar and Sandeep opine that in case Shahabuddin will succeed Gillani then this would evoke the already disgruntled Chief Justice. As stated in Messpot of Despots:

In 2011, Chaudhry directed Pakistan’s Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) to arrest and question Shahabuddin for approving a 2009 import of nine tonnes of ephedrine as health minister. The drug was imported by two pharmaceutical firms to ties with Gilani’s second son Ali Musa, a member of the National Assembly. Mindful of this controversy, the PPP has also nominated Raja Pervez Ashraf as a back-up candidate.

*Why Pakistan failed at a state
Dhiraj Nayyar discusses the annual ranking of failed states published by the Foreign Policy magazine, according tot which Pakistan was declared as a failed state. The writer builds the opinion that it is the ‘bankrupt economy’ instead of politics which has pulled the nation to a beleaguered state.

 

 
 

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Pakistan in ‘India Today’ During 2012- Part 2


In April 2012 an avalanche trapped 140 Pakistani soldiers under the snow in Giyari sector located at the Siachen glacier. 129 lost their lives and all the bodies have not been recovered due to the difficult terrain. Siachen is known as the world’s most difficult and highest battlefield. Once again, peace proposals came into limelight.

However, the adamant stance of India is clearly reflected through the reviews of the cover stories, published in India Today during 2012.

Blood Politics in SiachenMay 2012 Edition of ‘India Today’ magazine

Cover Stories: *Siachen can be a mountain of peace *Blood Politics on Siachen *India cannot afford to give up Siachen

*Siachen can be a mountain of peace
Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri (former foreign minister of Pakistan) suggests to expand the ‘issues of concern’ related with Indo-Pak diplomacy, beyond the Kashmir issue. He recalls in his article, the consensus between Rajiv Gandhi (India) and Benazir Bhutto (Pakistan) to call back soldiers from Siachen. Kasuri emphasizes on the expenditure of budget on developmental projects instead of defence and military. Being the adviser on foreign affairs and head of Kashmir affairs for Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Kasuri revealed that his party wants a harmonious relation between both the countries.

As quoted in ‘Siachen can be a mountain of peace’:

Between 2002-2007, we were able to create the right atmosphere for peace. We had reached an understanding on key issues like Jammu and Kashmir and were just a signature away from a solution for Sir Creek. It is time to infuse momentum in our bilateral ties-in 2007, a draft on Kashmir was ready to be presented to our Cabinet and Parliament. Our solution would have been acceptable to all the three sides, India, Pakistan and the Kashmiris I had several meetings with the Kashmiris in India, Pakistan and in other countries and almost 85 per cent of them were willing to accept the solution we proposed.

*Blood Politics on Siachen
Gaurav C. Sawant and Shiv Aroor reiterate the idea that ‘peace talks’ are in vain and the Indian army has an edge over the Pakistan army at Siachen. In case the civil government is resolved to ‘gift’ Siachen to Pakistan then the military should stop it all costs. They blatantly state:

The status quo, India believes, is bleeding Pakistan more. For the Indian Army, Siachen is not negotiable. “There is no reason for withdrawal from Siachen at this stage. Both tactically and strategically, holding those commanding heights is to India’s advantage. Pakistan has given no reason for India to trust it.
The strategic community is opposed to the Indian Government’s piecemeal approach to peace. They want Pakistan to stop infiltration, close down terror camps, crack down on terrorist groups hostile to India on their soil before there is forward movement on Siachen.

The entire article draws the conclusion that dialogue over anything (let alone Siachen) between the two countries isn’t feasible. The authors inadequately use the term ‘serial violator of bilateral agreements’ for Pakistan. This is proved by another author in the same edition of the magazine…

*India cannot afford to give up Siachen

…the changed circumstances of the day demand that we abandon the quest for an accord on Siachen. In this context, it may be recalled that when such an agreement was originally mooted in the late 1980s, we were suffering many casualties in the area which is no longer the case. Satish Chandra

This explicitly shows that the Indian government had been shifting stances on the Siachen issue according to its position on the ground.

What are the guarantees that Pakistan will not occupy the heights vacated by India? General V.P. Malik, Former Chief of Army Staff

Prime Minister cannot compel the Army to withdraw based on empty, meaningless words not backed by action. Ajit Doval, Former Director, Intelligence Bureau

At Saltoro, we dominate the heights overlooking the Northern Areas and land illegally ceded by Pakistan to China. Kanwal Sibal, Former Foreign Secretary

 
 

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India Versus Pakistan – Cricket and Media Diplomacy


Pakistan and India are known as ‘born rivals’. South Asia‘s nuclear powers get entrenched in a fierce competition as soon as they reach the cricket pitch. The days when Pakistan won the world cup of 1992 (under the captaincy of Imran Khan), cricket got famous as an international spectator sport. It receives a warm reception in South Asia, which spates out some fine cricketing legends. India and Pakistan have attempted to take their relations to the cricket stadium.

On December 4, 2008 (less than a month after the Mumbai attacks) an editorial of Times of India stated that “already most teams are reluctant to play in Pakistan because of the terrorist threat. If India, too, is shunned it’s going to be a serious blow to cricket”. The diplomatic ties between the neighbouring countries deteriorated in the wake of the 26/11 attacks (Mumbai attacks). Since then, Pakistan and India have not welcomed bilateral home series.

During the World Cup 2011, the semi-final between India and Pakistan turned into an exceptional event. The match was screened in the streets, cafeterias and even in some educational institutes. The hype reached a level where the, then Prime Minister of Pakistan, Yousaf Raza Gillani had to officially call for a half-day holiday. On April 5, 2011, Ian Bremmer, in the Foreign Policy Blog mentioned that the semi-final between India and Pakistan was used by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as an opportunity to take a swing at “cricket diplomacy”. The Indian premier invited Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to join him in the stands at Mohali.
Pakistan lost the semi-final.

After five years, Indian and Pakistani players are facing each other in the first bilateral series between India and Pakistan since November 2007. The series consists of two Twenty20 matches and 3 One Day Internationals (ODIs). The Twenty20 matches have been levelled 1/1. Where as, on December 30, 2012, Pakistan won the first ODI. Reports are surfacing about the attendance of President Asif Ali Zardari (Pakistan) and his counterpart President Pranab Mukherjee along with  Prime Minister Manhoman Singh (India) in the remaining two ODIs that will label the winner of the series.

This time the usual fervour, heat and sentiments are being contained through a unique ‘media diplomacy’. The Times of India and the Jang/Geo Group, leading their joint venture of ‘Aman ki Asha‘ (Wish for Peace) are providing live analysis/commentary on the ongoing matches. Broadcasts from the Indian and Pakistani studios are being simultaneously viewed by audience. Once again, politics and cricket have been merged, without substantial break through in the state of stagnancy that exists between the rivals. Relevant enough to support this view, are the statements of Rehman Malik (Pakistan’s interior minister) and Vivek Katju (a retired Indian diplomat).

“When Indians enter Pakistan and when Pakistanis enter India, they should feel like they are coming home,” Rehman Malik, Pakistan’s interior minister, said in New Delhi two weeks ago when the visa agreement was signed. India has issued more than 3,000 visas to Pakistanis for the cricket matches.
“All forms of people-to-people contact, including sports, are important and should be pursued, but never at the cost of our main focus, which is terrorism emanating from Pakistan,” said Vivek Katju, a retired diplomat who has served in Pakistan and was India’s ambassador in Afghanistan.Associated Press

In light of the above, Singh is using cricket as a favourite pastime with the consent of the Pakistani leadership.

Follow over-by-over coverage of the second T20 match between India and Pakistan at Ahmedabad on December 28, 2012. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

Indian Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Pakistani Cricket Captain Mohd Hafeez during the unveiling of the T20 trophy ahead of the 1st T20 match against India at Bengaluru on Sunday. (PTI) http://newindianexpress.com

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2012 in Political Ticker

 

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Forgotten Principles of the Founder


Quaid Azam Muhammad Ali JinnahMuch has been written and said about Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. However, little has been implemented by maintaining the true essence of his precious guidelines. The easy-to-understand percepts of the founding father have been reserved for historical archives, political sloganeering and rhetoric. Every year, August 14 and December 25 seems to be a ripe time for commemorating what should have been established as ‘law of the land’, till now. These dates on the calendar are unconditionally meant to spurt out the love for the country. The ‘go green’ furore encapsulates us (Pakistanis), twice a year (add two more to it if there is a cricket match between Pakistan and India). Zealous ‘spirits of nationalism’, undoubtedly, should be portrayed, but not at the expense of their institutionalization. Referring to M.A Jinnah during verbose speeches, substantiates the arguments of the present day leaders without ameliorating the distraught status quo.
Akbar S. Ahmed in his well wrought book, ‘Jinnah, Pakistan and Islamic Identity: the search for Saladin, questions the Pakistani leadership that has there been a plan devised to marginalize the ‘real Jinnah’? If not, then what is the record of Pakistan for promoting Jinnah’s stand on the international stage? The answers are still to be extracted and the procedure, like others prevailing in Pakistan, is not that easy. For the past 65 years, political bouts among the self-appointed custodians of Pakistan’s ideology, power-hungry politicians, the belligerent bureaucracy and so-called military saviours have enslaved the inspiring miracle of the 21st century. Instead of focusing on the essential messages of the founder, divergence over interpretations of his speeches has segregated the nation. ‘Debating Jinnah’ outweighed the acquisition of ‘visionary Jinnah’. To this day, attempts are being made to de-construct Jinnah’s inclination towards secularism or Islamic polity. Construing most of his speeches would lead to the conclusion that majority of the notions presented are accomodative of both the mindsets (religious and secularist). It is a matter of common sense to utilize the ‘irrefutable commonalities’ for building immutable blueprint of governance. The most simplistic example revolves around the golden motto of ‘unity, faith and discipline’. A clear manifestation of any three, on part of the Pakistani leadership, has not been witnessed. Being a human, Jinnah too had a right to hold some personal liberty in views and actions. Our failure lies in the unfair demarcation of his subjective and objective opinions. All this has dragged the illiterate majority into a state of self-pity and oblivion, which some people term as ‘identity crisis’ nowadays. The ‘intellectual demise’ of Pakistani politics had a ‘trickle down effect‘ that limited Quaid’s principles within ‘portrait frames’, bank notes and floozy declamations.
Nations have an inherent tendency to learn this behaviour when they fail to translate ‘words of wisdom’ into ‘actions of value’. Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah believed in the ‘power to act’ and advocated appropriate actions. He adopted struggle as his passion, not as a way for achieving desired results. His achievements were a by-product of his untiring devotion towards his passion. This is the reason that his name will rest in world history as a man who altered the globe. Pakistanis have an example that needs to be emulated through sincerity with their respective professions. Quaid-e-Azam’s justice with his profession made him the father of Pakistan. He was not a priest, philosopher, poet, writer or even a politician. In fact, Jinnah was an incorruptible and unpurchaseable lawyer, who won the biggest case of his life in the international court of justice, the day Pakistan came into existence. For all the explanations implicitly stated in this piece of writing, I couldn’t muster the courage to end it with a quotation of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

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Posted by on December 25, 2012 in Political Ticker

 

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Fall of Dhaka: A Comprehensive Failure of Pakistan’s Foreign Policy


shattered-subcontinent
December 16, 1971 is embedded in the history of Pakistan as a ‘black day’. Despite having ‘common colonizers’, the first twenty-four years of independence gave rise to surprisingly varied ‘political cyclones’, ensuing from the Arabian Sea to the Bay of Bengal. India was relatively steady while governing what was left by the British. Pakistan was entangled in the tedious process of constitution-making and abrupt changes in the government allowed the military to intervene in national politics. Field Marshall Ayub Khan’s (first martial law administrator of Pakistan) ‘economic policies’ are accused of burgeoning Bengali resentment. With an Eastern wing located 1000 miles away, administrative efficacy couldn’t be ensured. Results of elections in 1970 explicitly presented the political polarization that had developed. Yahya Khan‘s mediation for bringing Z.A Bhutto and Sheikh Mujib ur Rehman on the same page failed. The weak bondage between the Eastern and Western wing of the ideological state could no longer be sustained by ‘religious cohesive forces’. This divergence received the attention of rival India, which fomented hatred in East-Pakistan. Indira Gandhi and her Congress (R) were returned to power with a massively increased majority. Being a shrewd politician she viewed the hostile Bengalis as chips to avenge the Muslims. Indian instigation coupled with economic disparity and political differences, propelled Bengalis to drift away with their land (now known as Bangladesh). Apart from these causes that gave birth to Bangladesh, the foreign policy orientations also had a decisive role to play during the events of 1971.

Jinnah’s concept of Pakistan predisposed him in favour of democratic states and he considered the US as a partner in ‘defence for democracy’. Pakistan’s anti-communist aspirations made her lean towards the West. Gradually, the pro-American policy became an inevitable choice due to the influx of aid under the CENTO and SEATO pacts. However, the gulf between the two countries widened as the US provided military aid to India during Indochina war of 1962. Furthermore, aid to Pakistan was suspended during the first Indo-Pak War in 1965. This was perceived by Pakistan as ‘betrayal’ on part of the US and as a reactionary measure, windows to the East were opened. ‘Bilateralism’ was the new policy in effect, which aimed at normalising relations with China and the Soviet Union, but not at the expense of offending Western allies. On the other hand, the Indian foreign policy, was inspired by the non-aligned movement. Jawahar Lal Nehru sought to maintain cordial relations with both the USA and the USSR. Internationally, he was viewed as a champion of pacifism and an advocate of the United Nations. The ‘Hindu defeat’ during Sino-Indo war in 1962 distorted Nehru’s image at home as he was held for responsible for not anticipating an attack from China. The military was also stigmatised for not being prepared, but India’s policy of weaponisation and self-sufficiency gained momentum under Nehru. He played the ‘diplomatic cards’ at the right time in order to prepare India for similar conflicts in the future. Without giving up his non-aligned policy he requested the US to equip India with 12 squadrons of fighter jets and a modern radar system. This insightful diplomatic move was later used by Nehru’s daughter, Indira Gandhi.

Indira Gandhi is elected as the first female P...

Indira Gandhi is elected as the first female Prime Minister of India (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Adhering to her father’s principle of ‘non-alignment’, Indira proved to be a prudent Prime Minister of India. Being Nehru’s daughter, her exposure to the world was substantial enough to acquaint her with the dynamics of the international politics. She is known as the architect for innovating the ‘decision-making’ process in foreign affairs. Indira Gandhi demarcated the intelligence service into two in terms of their responsibilities. Intelligence Bureau was in-charge of internal intelligence and counter-espionage. External intelligence was entrusted to the newly formed Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). Both these services, along with revenue intelligence (which was under the Finance Ministry), were brought directly under the Prime Minister’s control. RAW intensified the separatist sentiment in East Pakistan and instigated the ‘Agartala operation’ in 1966. Politicians in the West Pakistan remained preoccupied with the elections campaign. Nature turned the tides in favour of India as a cyclone of great intensity added to the plight of Bengalis. Indira accused the federal government of remaining indifferent to the needs of the East Pakistanis. As military crackdown was ordered in East Pakistan by Yahya Khan in March 1971, Indira Gandhi found her reasons to gain support of the international community. West Pakistan further worsened the situation with the decision to expel all foreign journalists from East Pakistan. The Western media turned against West Pakistan and was outraged by the military crackdown. Media propaganda by India, constructed the opinion that ‘genocide’ of helpless Bengalis by West Pakistanis was inhumane.

With the international public opinion largely against Pakistan, Indira knew that the time was ripe to appear on the ‘diplomatic chess board’. As her first strategic move, she started negotiating with Moscow to reduce the chances of Chinese intervention. Islamabad failed to realise that its role as a mediator between Washington and Beijing had irked Moscow in the wake of strained Sino-Soviet relations. Indo-USSR friendship treaty was signed in July 1971. Meanwhile, the number of Bengal refugees infiltrating in India were exaggerated by her. To lessen India’s burden, the United States provided $350 million in aid. The pressure fell on Yahya Khan, as expected, he told Washington in October that he was willing to grant full autonomy to East Pakistan. Indira knew that she was heading towards victory on the diplomatic front and that was necessary to ensure the surrender of West Pakistan on battleground.

Richard Nixon and Indira Gandhi, 4 November 1971

Richard Nixon and Indira Gandhi, 4 November 1971 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Before the final blow, she undertook an international tour and visited six countries in Europe and America (Belgium, Austria, Britain, the US, France and Germany) for 20 days from October 24, seeking their understanding on India’s position. From West Pakistan, only one mission led by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto visited China for three days from November 5. Consequently, China was the only country that spoke of India’s gross interference in Pakistan’s affairs after the disaster of 1971. Even the Islamic World was unperturbed by the division of the largest Muslim-population. Shah of Iran had gone the farthest by stating that in case of any future uprising, Iran would annex Balochistan. President Nixon had understood the nefarious designs of Indira Gandhi, but the State Department didn’t allow him to support West Pakistan as public opinion veered against it. Islamabad’s poor diplomatic strategies in the presence of a military Commander-in-Chief (Yahya Khan) and a former Foreign Minister (Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto) brought much disgrace along with the loss of country’s Eastern half. The Indian foreign policy exploited the USSR and the US to the fullest. From the creation of RAW to the persuasion of international community in favour of Bengalis, everything was perfectly executed by Indira Gandhi. Her diplomatic acumen and the comprehensive failure of Pakistan’s foreign policy orchestrated the fall of Dhaka.
CONFLICT AND DIPLOMACY

nixon-indira

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Posted by on December 16, 2012 in International Affairs

 

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