Wednesday, May 20, 2009

atlanticist's patronising editorial ordering india to bend over and grease up

may 20th, 2009
behold what the nytimes (and obama) wants its good friend manmohan singh to do: yes, give kashmir to pakistan so that the taliban will stop killing yanks. and oh, 'cap, rollback and eliminate' its nukes so that the pakistanis can have a free hand.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ram Narayanan
Date: Wed, May 20, 2009 at 8:29 PM
Subject: NY Times' patronising editorial -- Readers respond

Dear Rajeev Srinivasan:

Following the Congress party's election victory in India, the New York Times of May 18 carried a condescending editorial titled "India's Challenges: it is time for India to exercise the kind of regional and global leadership expected of a rising power" (see

This editorial has evoked many excellent -- interesting and thoughtful -- comments (vide

Following are the editors' own selections that are worth reading.

Ram Narayanan 


May 19, 2009 7:03 am
Several comments regarding your editorial on what India should do in regards to Pakistan. You are right, India showed remarkable restraint in not attacking Pakistan after the Mumbai attack. Especially since the Indian government believes that elements of the Pakistani army/intelligence were involved. In addition, your paper reported sources in the US intelligence organization that Pakistan's ISI was involved in the attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul that killed two senior Indian officials.

Even if US aid is not used directly to build Pakistani nukes, money is fungible, and the resources freed up by the aid will be used by the Pakistani's to build nukes.

So to ask India to unilaterally stop developing additional nuclear material and to go into arms control talks with Pakistan and China is unrealistic. Do you really think that China wants to have arms control discussions? China is a major security concern for India and the US. India's military calculus is more centered on China than Pakistan. Your proposal is a non-starter.

As far as Kashmir is concerned, India would have agreed to converting the current Line of Control as the International border. That is the only pragmatic solution. There are several precedents to this. Bengal was divided between India and East Pakistan. Punjab was divided between India and West Pakistan and Pashtunistan was divided by the Durand line. Pakistani leaders have come close to accepting such a deal in the past but unfortunately have been overtaken by events in their own country before consummating the deal.

The reason that there is a strong presence of the Indian army near the Pakistani border is to prevent infiltration by terrorists from Pakistan. Often under cover fire from the Pakistani army. Every week there are reports in the Indian press of pitched battles as the Indian forces try and stop the terrorists from entering India. Do you really think that any Indian government can order its military to withdraw from the border while terrorists are entering on a regular basis.

The only way the US Af-Pak strategy will work is if the ruling elite in Pakistan (i.e. the Army ) finally realize that it is not in their best interests to keep India as the bogeyman. Until now, the demonizing of India has allowed the Pakistani army to control Pakistan. Like some one correctly said, Most countries have an army while in Pakistan the army has a country. That calculus will have to change for the Pakistani elite. India getting stronger v.vs. Pakistan will help that cause not the other way around as your editorial suggests. 

— Sanjiv, San Jose, CA

Recommended by 156 Readers

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