Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Pakistan-India Relations: A different viewpoint

By Lieutenant General Tariq Khan (Retired)


Lately India has embarked upon a aggressive campaign against Pakistan, both politically and militarily, maligning it in everything that happens in their country. For some reasons, we try to downplay each event for the sake of 'improving' relations, while Indians do not let go even the smallest incident by implicating Pakistan. If both the two nations eat 'aloo gosht' it does not mean we are friends or the same breed.

Here is a different viewpoint about the recent Indian aggressiveness against Pakistan by Lieutenant General Tariq Khan (Retired), who is the recipient of the coveted sword of honour from Pakistan Military academy, and has a vast experience of watching closely both eastern and western frontiers of the country, commanding an Armoured Division and Infantry Division in the Taliban infested South Waziristan. Tariq Khan also led the Frontier Corps to victory against the Taliban in the Battle of Bajaur. He has also worked closely with the coalition forces in Afghanistan. Besides he has had an extended tenure at the CENTCOM where he received United States Legion of Merit for meritorious services as a liaison officer at CENTCOM during Operation Enduring Freedom.

Here is what he has to say about Pakistan-India relations:

The Indians keep talking of having got hold of damning evidence in the Dinanagar Case. Let's examine it and I do not think our intelligence needs me to defend them. First, it is obvious that it is not in Pakistan's interest to escalate matters now but it is in India's interest to create some sort of a confusion for the following reasons:

1. Pakistan is about to take the Indians to the cleaners in the Baluchistan matter in the Security Council.

2. Apparently some progress was being made in the Afghan reconciliation which at its conclusion is not likely to allow an Indian role in Afghanistan.

3. The CPEC and it's effects.

4. The uprising of the Sikhs in Punjab.

5. The MQM factor and stabilisation of Karachi.

These are some of the major points to consider whereas more can also be proffered. Some questions for the Indians to consider:

1. Claiming they have irrefutable GPS data seems to look as if these jokers have seen a GPS for the first time. Data can be added and the GPS could also be planted, which in this case is probable. After all, they are so smart and we so foolish that we infiltrate into enemy territory with a sign posted to say, 'I am from Pakistan' and of all people they discover it.

2. How did these infiltrators cross the River Ravi when it's in full flood, spanning 1000 meters with a massive discharge of water?

3. If the fence is so ineffective why spend so much on it. It maybe preferable to spend it on the thousands starving in the nude on Delhi's streets



This brings me to the threats: I think we have heard enough from the Indians, we have never threatened them, so what's stopping this declared terrorist who is their PM who is hiding his train massacre of Muslims and threatening us from the comforts of his office?.

As for Kashmir, it shall never be theirs and the matter will be resolved. To the Indians I would say it's a question of time. Our own weaknesses and internal bickering has delayed the matter; when we are ready I can promise you we shall come to get what's ours. Hopefully you will not have to wait too long.

Leaving aside the war that they won by supporting a separatist movement in East Pakistan, they, who are 8 times are size have nothing to brag about. In 1948 we got most of our Kashmir by the Pashtuns alone, in '65 we got the rest of what we have through Gen Akhtar Malik's offensive. Have they forgotten Ran of Kutch? Sialkot was the largest tank battle after world war two and they got thrashed; must have been the largest thrashing in military history by that equation and that too by one regiment alone, 25 Cavalry? ??? Do they remember MM Alam, in case they need a reference they need to look at the Guinness book of records, a Pakistani fighter pilot who took out 5 Indian hijras in one engagement. So, yes, I for one would welcome an Indian adventure, haven't been to India and would love to see the monuments attributed to our forefathers in Delhi and Agra etc.

The other issue is of the waters that the Indians are trying to choke off. Well I would welcome any investment in dams and other such projects. We have never been good at these but since we are likely to inherit these structures I would request that we should closely supervise them for good quality and not cutting edges here and there.

Last of all; every dog has his day and we will come for you Indians. You will have to destroy us if you do not want that to happen.

We are not an ordinary Army, we have our moments of glory too. We moved 3.5 million people out of Swat and relocated them. Cleared the Valley of militants in 3 months and moved the people back to their homes. Unprecedented in military history and the closest to this was the international community trying to move 3 million Afghan refugees back to Afghanistan and failing even after 30 years. 

We are the Army that has cleared 3500 kms of road in the conflict zone and control our lines of communications unlike the Coalition of 35 countries, hunkered down in static garrisons, whimpering, frightened and awaiting relief every six months while they paid the Taliban goodwill money not to attack them. They, the conquerors of Afghanistan have now run with their tail between their legs while we are here to stay. What of the Cambrian Patrol where our Army was pitched against the best, UK, USA, Russia, Canada, South Africa, Australia, Germany, Italy and you, India. We stood first in the world. No we are not an ordinary Army and rue the day when you the Indians have to face us again.

Some may think I am India centric, well yes I am and proud of it. I have considered them to be my enemy for 35 years and was paid to do so. I have no other way of looking at it. I am neither a politician or a diplomat and thus am liberated from the pseudo intellectual debate of 'how it would benefit both of us to improve relations'. This is an enemy state and this ambiguity must be addressed, we work against each other's interests and who ever does it better, wins. 

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