Immediately after condemning the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, Pakistani Foreign Minister, Khurshid Kasuri suggested that the best way to deal with terrorism was to tackle the real issue of Jammu and Kashmir. What has a bomb blast in Mumbai got to do with Kashmir, you may wonder, but that seems to be the association in the Western World as well. When Michael Krasny made this association in Forum the Consul General of India, B.S. Prakash, asked him the same question.
Note that all this association was already made, very prematurely, even before the Police had clues connecting SIMI and LeT and before the congratulatory phone calls were traced. Even before this, suggestions came from various experts that the peace process should not suffer due to such terrorist activities and even thinking about reviewing the process would be falling into the terrorist trap.
Echoing the insensitive line by Khurshid Kasuri , Xenia Dormandy suggested that Kashmir is the problem and India needs to step up in offering something in Kashmir. To give her credit, and she said the right things on her interview with Neil Conan on Talk of the Nation, that the terrorist infrastructure in Pakistan is a big problem. Now the Economist too has suggested that India and Pakistan should solve the Kashmir issue.
All this faith in the peace process is built on the assumption that once the Kashmir resolved, with major “compromises” (code word for land donation), there will be ever lasting peace process in the sub-continent. Israel has learned the hard way this week that making such compromises do not guarantee anything, other than an escalation in violence.
Last September Israel withdrew from the Gaza strip and Gaza became the first completely independent Palestinian territory. The Palestinians fired rockets from Gaza, and then later dug a tunnel from there and kidnapped an Israeli soldier. Israel withdrew from Lebanon in 2000. United Nations verified the withdrawal and was satisfied with it. Now from Lebanon, Hezbollah entered Israel and kidnapped two soldiers. Now Israel is fighting a war on two fronts.
What is the guarantee that Gaza and Lebanon will not happen to India. How can you trust a nation which does not want to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure and which was planning Kargil, while yet another peace process was going on?<