The days of cross-border firing are here again

The two-many-Musharrafs problem has gotten much worse.

Rajinder Puri’s analysis is to the point:

Benazir’s assassination, Musharraf’s loss of power and Pakistan’s post-election scene reduced terrorist attacks to some extent. Meanwhile, the Pakistan army sought peace with terrorist outfits. Result: terrorism is deflected to India. And the cease-fire violation by the Pakistan army suggests that the old army-jihaadi nexus is back in business. It matters little if Pakistan’s military chief General Kayani is in control or not, or whether it is the Pakistan army or only certain elements in it that collude with terrorism. The end result is the same. For India, it is a question of survival. Whether hapless or complicit, the Pakistan government’s inability to deliver on terror is unacceptable. The Pakistan army’s role is intolerable. [Outlook]

He goes on to recommend that:

On Tuesday May 20 the Indo-Pakistan peace dialogue will resume. Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee will be interacting with his counterpart. The Indian government might ask the Pakistanis bluntly which endgame they are aspiring for: Gilani’s, Musharraf’s or the army’s. Unless that is clear, peace talks will be a waste of time.

But because there are so many players in Pakistan, with various alignments of interests, just talking to the hapless Pakistani foreign minister won’t be of much use.

More importantly, it is necessary for the Indian government to quickly determine the particular actors responsible for the violation of the ceasefire and ‘discourage’ them. [See C Raja Mohan’s op-ed]

4 thoughts on “The days of cross-border firing are here again”

  1. Drawing from game theory, a tit-for-tat response in a 2-player repeating game with negatively correlated payoffs usually leads to a stable equilibrium with each player getting a payoff commensurate with its ability to inflict pain.

    India’s strategy of playing the good guy is the worst possible strategy, IMHO. Of course its not entirely clear what penalties if any we have visited on Papistan.

    But itys also now clear as Puri points out that its no longer a 2-player game. Too many cooks on the Papi side of the fence are muddling the broth.

  2. These threats used to be existential. Now they’re increasingly tiresome. The many guys collectively running the show display a singular lack of strategic ideas. When in trouble they revert to their “comfort zone” of attacking India – consensus being pre-established. The state is internally fractured and is begging to be chopped up. Wish we could summon up the resolve of 1971 and do the needful.

  3. Insistance on zero terror, infiltration & hand over of wanted terrorists should be the pre-requisites even before we agree to any interaction with Pakistan. Unless the desired results are delivered by them we should not have any talk to them. Any breach should be immediately & strongly dealt with. Only then will Pakistan will take us seriously & the Indian side can strongly. By agreeing to talk while all the terrorists activities continue in India allows Pakistan to take India for a ride everytime.

    Our leadership needs to stop being nervous & be assertive.

  4. Peace talks will prove out to be futile in such times. Demonstration of power when provoked, is essential from things getting worse.

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