God save the US from its pundits

Don’t they read the news?

A certain Nirav Patel from the Center for New American Security—a newish think-tank—argues that “President Bush should quickly dispatch the necessary high-level authorities to mediate and resolve the current Kashmir crisis before it becomes a reason for war” leveraging its “economic and military co-operation with both countries”. (linkthanks Pragmatic)

Mr Patel is not reading the daily news. It turns out that the economic and military co-operation—the tens of billions of dollars of it—is not even allowing the United States the leverage to prevent the Pakistani military establishment from using the Taliban to shoot at American soldiers in Afghanistan. That apart, Mr Bush’s envoys have too many things on their hands in Pakistan to expend what little leverage they have out there on defusing the situation in Kashmir.

But it’s clear Mr Patel is not referring to Pakistan. He is more concerned about what India might do. “Nationalist sentiment in India”, according to him, “is quickly transforming pragmatic policies toward Pakistan into hard-line and reactionary approaches. India is unlikely to sit on the sidelines much longer.” Now, how did Mr Patel arrive at that conclusion? Without supporting facts, such conclusions can only be described as fanciful.

That’s not all, actually. He actually fears a breakdown in nuclear deterrence. Because “Rational leaders in both countries have thus far successfully managed ethno-nationalist impulses. However, as India continues to feel cornered by and vulnerable to terrorist threats originating in Pakistan, it will find it increasingly difficult to ignore the impulse to attack.”

Perhaps Mr Patel could point to a single credible voice from any part of India’s strategic establishment or indeed from a political party, that is advocating a military attack on Pakistan. So his opinion is nothing more than mere presumption. And if he would only begin to read the daily news, he will notice that it is the Pakistani army that is routinely violating the ceasefire. What can the United States do about this? Precious little.

5 thoughts on “God save the US from its pundits”

  1. It is interesting how the words – nationalist and reactionary – are so easily used in the same sentence in the Indian context (mostly by western “pundits” and almost always by bleeding hearts.

  2. Who funds this genius? Who pays the bijli bills for the AC inthe office and the pani bills for the restroom? That should say a lot about this man’s fanciful proclamations.

  3. Perhaps he is one of those Indian (or Indian origin) selfhating pseudointellectual types who populate American universities and think tanks.

    He doesnt make any distinction between the nuclear armed rogue state of Pakistan and the nuclear armed responsible state of India. In his eyes, both are unstable children who need someone (like the US) to control their childish impulses.

  4. It is exasperating, innit? You cant even pick a train of thought in the writeup to refute – it is utter tosh.

  5. Unfortunately there are more Nirav Patels out here – wonder how Fareed Zakria would react to this piece of trash.

    Even more unfortunately, people like Nirav would have Obama’s ear when he becomes President. In fact people like Nirav already have influence – Bruce Riedel ex CIA and an aide to Obama would have been very approving of this- to get an idea why, please read this

    http://news.newamericamedia.org/news/view_article.html?article_id=45979be4a1d5ce4e4ec2be2f3e6bf884

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