OffStumped For All Things Right of Center, Bringing a Right of Centre Reality Check to Indian Politics, News Media Reporting and Opinion now in Hindi अब आप के लिये हिंदी मे.

The Reuters reports:

Criticising the bomb attack on former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto as reprehensible, old rival India indirectly urged Islamabad on Friday to do more to curb “terrorism” in the region. India’s condemnation came hours after 133 people were killed in a suspected suicide bomb attack aimed at Bhutto as she was driven through Karachi to greet supporters on her return from eight years in exile.

Having watched the sequence of events unfold live on Television (courtesy Sahara Samay) the audacity and the mayhem was shocking to say the least.

So what to make of Pakistan ?

While we await the astute Nitin Pai’s take, some observations from Offstumped.

Just as the events were unfolding in Karachi, Fox News in the U.S. cut over to a live feed from a Pakistani News Channel while Neil Cavuto was interviewing Pakistani Ambassador to the U.S., Mr. Durrani. The Ambassador one must say did an admirable job of spin defending his master, Mia Musharraf’s regime. But these words by him were most striking, and unsurprisingly in the “black and white” world of American Politics, went unchallenged.

“Pakistan is a multi-party Democracy much like India”

Clearly the Ambassador’s state of mind is beyond “self denial” almost bordering “the delusional”. Some time back Offstumped had related an anecdote from a GeoTV discussion on strategic affairs with a former DG of the ISI in which he described Pakistan as an upstart Sunni majority nation with no baggage of history.

What kind of an upstart, adventurist experiment is Pakistan ?

If one looks at the totality of the situation in Pakistan –

from its North Western Borders to its heartland, its nuclear proliferation by A.Q. Khan, its grooming of the Taliban on one hand, jehadi outfits in India on the other, the links to attacks in UK and the links to failed attacks elsewhere, the number of Al-Qaeda wanted that were picked up inside Pakistan, and the consensus view on where Bin Laden’s holed up, the spate of suicide attacks, the lal masjid fiasco and now this …..

it is clear that we have unwittingly contributed to the creation of a Frankenstein nation.

This is an experiment gone horribly wrong. 

With more Muslims living in democratic India, Pakistan never has been able to reconcile its past with its present identity. The military establishment that runs Pakistan has been deluded into believing its a major geo-political player by the Americans and the Chinese who have viewed it as nothing more than a pawn in their geopolitical games. With a Nuclear Arsenal at its disposal the establishment’s delusional thinking is understandable. With the spate of suicide bombings the desperation of its people is also understandable.

Neither the Americans nor the Chinese can be expected to do anything substantial about this mutant nation beyond the cliched calls for return to democracy and ending support to the Taliban. So where do we go from here and what attitude must India have ?

We fought wars, we pow-wowed along the borders, we grudgingly accepted living with ISI fomented terror hoping it will eventually go away, we even entertained ideas of jointly managing Kashmir. We did not scare monger ourselves into an arms race, we did not start digging bunkers out of Nuclear Paranoia, we even indulged an invasion by proxy while taking care we dont cross the borders.

Nowhere in history or in present times across the globe has any nation tolerated or indulged its neighbour to this degree without an all pervasive environment of military uncertainity.

Our attitude towards Pakistan has always been comforted by a notion of stability in Pakistan.

It is perhps time that false comfort is called into question.

It is perhaps time for India to wake up to the reality of the Frankenstein Nation, Pakistan is fast turning into.

Recently Apollo over at The Catapault commented on a suggestion by Jerry Rao on Pakistan being India’s buffer state, an interesting comment on the same post by a reader asking who will buffer us from Pakistan ?

A notion of stability in Pakistan buffered us all this long and that notion is fast turning out to be merely a figment of our failed imagination …………


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