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Posts Tagged ‘Conflicts’

Iran and Pakistan sign gas export agreement

Iran and Pakistan formally signed yesterday an export deal which commits the Islamic republic to supplying its eastern neighbour with natural gas from 2014.

The contract is the latest step in completing a multi-billion dollar gas pipeline between Iran and Pakistan within the next four years.

“This is a happy day,” Iran’s Deputy Oil Minister Javad Ouji told reporters at the contract signing ceremony in Tehran. “After decades of negotiations, we are witnessing today the execution of the agreement… to export more than 21 million cubic metres of natural gas daily from 2014 to Pakistan,” he added.

He said that from today, Iran will start building the next 300-kilometre leg of the pipeline from the southeastern city of Iranshahr to the Pakistani border, through the Iranian port of Chabahar.

Iran has already constructed 907km of the pipeline between Asalooyeh, in southern Iran, and Iranshahr, which will carry natural gas from Iran’s giant South Pars field. Pakistan’s Deputy Energy Minister Kamran Lashari, who was present at the signing ceremony, said Islamabad will conduct a one-year feasibility study for building its section of the pipeline.

It will then “take three years for constructing the 700km pipeline” from the Iranian border to the Pakistani city of Nawabshah, he added. The pipeline was originally planned between Iran, Pakistan and India, but the latter pulled out of the project last year. Pakistan plans to use the gas for its power sector.

Turkish Navy to escort next flotilla: PM Erdogan on board

Turkish Navy to escort next flotilla: PM Erdogan on board

ANKARA: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was considering sailing to the Gaza Strip as part of an aid flotilla backed by the Turkish Navy.

Lebanese newspaper al Mustaqbal quoted security sources as saying that Mr Erdogan was pondering the move in order to break the barrier imposed against Gaza by Israel.

It said that “as part of the open conflict between Turkey and Israel following the massacre against the ‘freedom sail’ to Gaza and the protest sparked in the world, Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan is considering going to Gaza himself in order to break the blockade imposed on the Strip.”

The sources said Erdogan raised the option in discussions with associates.

The report added that the Turkish leader also told the U.S. that he planned to ask his navy to escort another aid flotilla – but officials in Washington asked him to delay the plan in order to look into the matter.

The move followed strong criticism of Israel by Erdogan after Israeli armed forces killed several people on board an aid flotilla Monday, sparking widespread international condemnation.

When the possibility of Erdogan joining a flotilla was posed to Mark Regev, the spokesman for the Israeli prime minister, he said such a move was not a “realistic scenario” and dismissed it outright.

“Some of these reports must be taken with a grain of salt … I am not sure that is a realistic scenario,” he told Sky News.

“I prefer that we sort these things out peacefully. Nobody wants any saber-rattling. It does not do any good,” said Regev.

Freedom struggle in Indian Occupied Kashmir heats up

Freedom struggle in Indian Occupied Kashmir heats up

SRINAGAR, India — Militant violence is surging in Indian-controlled Kashmir after years of declines, officials say, warning of increased insurgent infiltration from Pakistan and a bloody summer ahead.

Nearly everyday, the crackle of gunfire and the roar of mortars can be heard somewhere in the towns and forests of the scenic Himalayan region, which is claimed by both India and Pakistan but divided between them.

Most recently, Indian soldiers have been hunting Muslim militants for more than a week in a thickly forested area northwest of Srinagar, the region’s main city. The operation, one of the largest in years, has already left 11 suspected rebels and four soldiers dead amid the rugged terrain, said Indian army spokesman Col. Vineet Sood.

On Friday, police said that suspected rebels threw a grenade at government forces as they fired rubber bullets to disperse nearly 150 anti-India protesters in Srinagar, wounding four security forces and one civilian.

Hemant Lohia, a top police officer, said two of the injured troops were in critical condition.

No militant group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.

“The army is gearing up to meet new challenges as this summer is going to be a hot summer in terms of security,” India’s Defense Minister A.K. Antony recently told reporters. Summers have traditionally been a time of increased fighting in Kashmir, as snow melts in Himalayan mountain passes and militants are able to slip across from the Pakistani-controlled portion of the territory.

Police say they have arrested 10 Kashmiri teenagers just this month — six allegedly trying to cross to the Pakistani side for arms training and four looking for weapons training on the Indian side.

According to police records, 76 suspected militants and 23 members of the police and the army have been killed in the first four months this year. Thirteen civilians have also died in the conflict.

During the same period last year, 53 militants, 15 members of various security forces and five civilians were killed.

The spike in militant violence follows a decline that began in 2004, after India and Pakistan initiated a peace process, that reduced bilateral tensions but made little headway in settling the two nation’s core dispute over Kashmir. The violence could complicate efforts by the South Asian rivals to restart the peace talks that were frozen after 10 Pakistan-based militants attacked the Indian city of Mumbai in November 2008.

Analysts say massive street protests that roiled Indian Kashmir over the past two years may have paved the way for the resurgent militant attacks.

The protests were sparked by local issues, such as a state government decision to transfer land to a Hindu shrine, but quickly became the region’s largest-ever protests against Indian rule, often bringing tens of thousands of people into the streets. Rock-throwing would lead to government forces firing tear gas and even live ammunition, leading to pitched clashes. Overall, more than 60 protesters have been killed and hundreds more wounded.

Meanwhile, Indian authorities launched a massive arrest campaign, hauling in hundreds of protesters.

The crackdown “is radicalizing the situation,” said Noor Mohammed Baba, a professor at the political science department of Kashmir University. “The scenario becomes more favorable for radical elements to take over.”

Security forces, with long experience at fighting militants, have had more trouble neutralizing street protests.

Until there is forward movement toward resolving the festering Kashmir dispute, it will be difficult to end the protests, analysts say.

“They don’t fear armed militants as much as youth in the streets now,” Baba said.

Nuclear-armed Pakistan and India have fought two wars over Kashmir and, since 1989, Muslim militants have fought in Indian-controlled Kashmir for independence or merger with Pakistan.

More than 68,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed in what seemed like relentless cycles of fighting and crackdowns.

India accuses Pakistan of funding and training militants in the Pakistani-held Kashmir, and helping them slip over to the Indian side to fight.

Islamabad denies that, saying it only gives moral and diplomatic support to the rebels. Violence surges in Indian Kashmir after decline By AIJAZ HUSSAIN (AP)

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50,000 Kashmiris detained under draconian law

May 5, 2010 1 comment

In Indian occupied Kashmir, over fifty thousand civilians have been detained under the draconian law, Public Safety Act, during the last twenty one years of the uprising against Indian occupation.

This was revealed by the President of the Bar Association of the occupied territory, Mian Abdul Qayoom, while talking to Kashmir Media Service in Srinagar, today. The draconian law authorizes the occupation authorities to detain a person for a period up to two years without producing him before a court of law. Mian Abdul Qayoom said that presently 800 to 900 persons were behind the bars under the Public Safety Act and it was invoked against 250 Kashmiris only in the current year.

He said during a period of one year, the draconian law was slapped seven times on APHC leader, Shabbir Ahmed Shah, eight times on Mussarat Alam Butt and four times each on Muhammad Yousaf Mir, Ghulam Nabi Sumji, Hafizullah and Bilal Siddiqi.

Later, Mian Abdul Qayoom and the vice president of the Bar, Aijaz Beidar visited Bandipore to express solidarity with the families of illegally detained civilians.

Meanwhile, Sopore remained tense for the third day, today, over the killing of a youth. The locals told mediamen that the killing was the handiwork of Indian troops. All markets and educational institutions remained closed and transport was off the road. A bomb blast occurred, today, in the Hari Singh High Street area of Srinagar without causing any causality. An army trooper committed suicide by hanging himself on a ceiling fan at an army camp in Udhampur. This has brought the number of such deaths amongst the troops to 176 since January 2007.

In London, the Executive Director of Kashmir Centre, Professor Nazir Ahmed Shawl, in a statement, deplored the silence of the international community over the discovery of unnamed graves in the occupied territory.

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Travesty Of Justice In Indian Occupied Kashmir

April 27, 2010 Leave a comment

Travesty Of Justice In Indian Occupied Kashmir

The death sentences given to Kashmiris in the recent Lajpat Nagar bomb blast case verdict is viewed as unfair and oppressive uniformly by the commoners in Kashmir.

Prostest against the verdict has rocked Kashmir. Mother of Mirza Nissar Hussain , who staged a protest dharna in Srinagar says he was only 14 years when he was arrested by Delhi Police. She claims that there is no possibility of his involvement in the bomb blast. The common sentiment in Kashmir is that while Kashmiris caught in mainland India by the “oppressive rulers” are given the maximum punishment, Indians arrested on criminal charges in Kashmir go scotfree. Kashmiris are petrified that in the Shopian double murder and rape case the CBI has approached J &K High Court seeking dismissal of the criminal charges against four policemen arrested for alleged destruction of evidence. These two court cases raises disturbing questions about Kashmiri nationalism, deliverance of justice and engagement of Indian administration and Kashmiri population.

It also reinforces the mutual distrust and hatred that Kashmiri population and Indian administration hold for each other. The survival of this thirty-year-old violent insurgency in Kashmir is fanned by this mutual hatred and distrust. The experiences of Kashmiris in mainland India certainly add to the foreign feelings that the Kashmiris hold. This may be because of the different context from which Indian and Kashmiri nationalism emerged. Kashmiri nationalism, in particular has sustained itself by constructing the hate for India. To be explicitly hating everything Indian is also helpful in constructing their nationalism and identity. William Polk in his book ‘Violent politics’ says, ‘for a sustained insurgency against the foreign rule one doesn’t even need the backup of an ideology; it is just the idea of hate for the “foreign” that would survive it’.

This engagement of the Indian police system and Kashmiri civilians has emerged from this historical backdrop of hate, mistrust and disrespect for each other. It is like the collison of two trains running on the same track. This may be case when cases related Kashmiris come up in court too. Are they treated as humans first without associating this history of hate to their particular case? The mere identity of a Kashmiri can raise the word “Terrorist” in India. Is it fair? Kashmiris fear that Indian courts are not free from these bisases.

The case is quite reverse if it is a Kashmiri court and an Indian convict (for a rape and murder case by the security officials in Shopian). The Hindu reports that “CBI has approached the J&K high court seeking dismissal of the criminal charges against the four policemen arrested for alleged destruction of evidence” (the Hindu, 23/04/2010). Can you complain if Kashmiris loss complete hope and faith in judicial procedures in India after seeing so many go Scot-free after committing heinious crimes like the Shopian rape case or be it the popular kununposhpora mass rape? Let us not forget the popular case of Afzal Guru.

The efforts of Indian administration in managing the Kashmiri lives or the efforts put forth to win Kashmiri support have failed miserably so far. Instead many actions of the Indian administration has led to to further alienatiing Kashmiri populace from India. The prevailing mistrust and hatred will also lead to widening of this divide and worsening the life and the future of so many hopeful youngsters whose life is destroyed by this violent siege that doesn’t seem to end. Travesty Of Justice In Kashmir By Inshah Malik, 26 April, 2010, Countercurrents.org

Inshah Malik is a PhD scholar at Tata institute of Social Sciences Mumbai, India. Inshah.malik@tiss.edu

West shouldn’t underestimate Pakistan’s contribution in defeating the insurgents: US General

April 19, 2010 Leave a comment

West shouldn’t underestimate Pakistan’s contribution in defeating the insurgents: US General

The Pakistani army has succeed where the NATO forces have failed.
Con Coughlin, a retired US general, and the Telegraph’s executive foreign editor recently visited Pakistan. He appreciates Pakistan’s efforts. He correctly points out that the real victory belongs to Pakistan but it came at a high price.

Thousands of people dead, high economic growth stalled and an opportunity for its enemies to utilize this time to destabilize it.

Now the real victory in Aghanistan should be development, education and right for the people to bring them into the real world. No more warlords and drug runners running the show.

Con Coughlin has written a brilliant article in The UK Telegraph about Pakistani successes. He will follow his initial report with a more details analysis.

I’ve just spent the day touring Pakistan’s northern border with Afghanistan, where I’ve been deeply impressed by what Pakistan’s military has achieved in its recent offensive against the Taliban. Travelling in the same territory where the young Winston Churchill fought (and wrote highly readable dispatches for the Daily Telegraph) during the British Army’s Malakand campaign in 1897, I found that the Pakistanis have succeeded in completely routing the Taliban and reclaiming control of the tribal territories that adjoin the Afghan border.

I will be writing in more detail about my tour of Pakistan’s front line later on, but my first impressions are of the discipline and commitment the Pakistanis have demonstrated in eradicating their own Taliban threat. In the past Pakistan has got a bad press for appearing to drag its feet over tackling the Islamist threat in its midst. But the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and the return of the country to civilian rule has seen a radical change of outlook, especially after the Taliban made its ill-judged attempt to seize control of the Swat valley to the north of the country’s capital, Islamabad.

The military responded by launching an all-embracing assault on the Taliban’s stronghold in Bajaur province in the tribal territories. Two years later the Taliban’s fighters have either been killed, captured or fled back across the inhospitable moutain passes to Afghanistan. During the campaign, moreover, the Pakistani military has taken significant casualties of its own, with 150 dead and more than 600 injured, which is more than twice the casualties suffered by our own troops on the other side of the border during the same period.

With this level of sacrifice in future we should all think twice before accusing the Pakistanis of lack of effort.

There was a confederation planed between Pakistan and Afghanistan which would be in the best interest as there are more Pakhtuns in Pakistan than there are in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan: Can Obama hammer India to stop interfering in US policy?

Afghanistan: Can Obama hammer India to stop interfering in US policy?

The Obama Administration wants a face saving exit from Kabul. Islamabad holds a key to that face saving exit. Islamabad is asking Washington to use its offices to reduce the border tension between Pakistan and Bharat so that Islamabad can concentrate on the Western Frontier. The Obama Administration, and the Civilian and Military leadership seems to have understood this Pakistani point of view–which they find reasonable.

The Obama Administration must make it very clear to Delhi that it must stop its terror activities in Balochistan and its cross-border terror using the TTP and other terror groups. Enough is enough. Unless the Obama Administration can take that tough stand, it cannot bring peace to the land between the Indus and the Amu Darya and beyond. One major issue that many in the Administration are well aware of is the potential and the reality of the destabilization of Central Asia. If peace does not grow in Afghanistan and does not grow quickly, all of Central Asia will be encompassed in the vortex of war. That is why China and Russia want a quick end to violence on their doorstep.

  • The directive, issued in December, concluded that “India must make resolving its tensions with Pakistan a priority for progress to be made on US goals in the region,” Hindustan Times
  • http://www.hindustantimes.com/Obama-s-secret-directive-Intensify-efforts-to-ease-Indo-Pak-tensions/H1-Article1-527400.aspx
  • A debate continues within the administration over how hard to push India, which has long resisted outside intervention in the conflict with its neighbor. WSJ
  • To blunt India’s eager courtship of Afghanistan, Pakistan is pouring $300 million of its own money and resources into a nation it also views as key to the stability of volatile South Asia, as well as a potentially lucrative business partner. Emily Wax. Washington Post.
  • Pakistan has hosted 3 million Afghan refugees for 30 years and has already spent $500 million in projects in Pakistan. Millions of Afghans have been born in Pakistan and they speak Urdu and have made Pakistan their home–specially in Quetta.

President Obama wants to change Bharati attitudes. The issue in Washington is how to bell the Delhi cat. Bharat feigns nervousness about any third party “negotiations”–and uses the excuse of bilateralism so that it does not have to budge on any issue. Bilateral talks are the victim of Bharati hubris, arrogance, intransigence and obduracy. They always fail.

  • Indian epiphany: Taliban good again!
  • Rejection of Indian influence by the region

The directive concluded that India must make resolving its tensions with Pakistan a priority for progress to be made on U.S. goals in the region, according to people familiar with its contents.

The U.S. has invested heavily in its own relations with Pakistan in recent months, agreeing to a $7.5 billion aid package and sending top military and diplomatic officials to Islamabad on repeated visits. The public embrace, which reached a high point last month in high-profile talks in Washington, reflects the Obama administration’s belief that Pakistan must be convinced to change its strategic calculus and take a more assertive stance against militants based in its western tribal regions over the course of the next year in order to turn the tide in Afghanistan.

According to the Boston Globe Senator “Kerry has become a key architect of a policy shift away from strictly short-term, conditional payments to Pakistan’s military and toward long-term pledges of assistance to its citizens”. Wendy Chamberlain is very popular in Pakistan. The Boston Globe quotes her on Senator John Kerry. “John Kerry has played an enormously positive role,’’ said Wendy Chamberlin, a former ambassador to Pakistan who is president of the Middle East Institute…Kerry hopes the aid will bolster what he calls a “sea change’’ in Pakistan.

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  • Syed Ali Gilani says ‘Kashmiris’ sacrifices not to go waste’
  • Hasina Wajed ordered BDR massacre
  • Afghanistan tests India’s Strategic Innocence

President Barack Obama issued a secret directive in December to intensify American diplomacy aimed at easing tensions between India and Pakistan, asserting that without détente between the two rivals, the administration’s efforts to win Pakistani cooperation in Afghanistan would suffer.

Peter Spiegel and Matthew Rosenberg make some blunt observations in The Wall Street Journal and if the reports are to be believed then Delhi is under a lot of pressure to reduce its presence in Afghanistan, and obtund its military presence along the Pakistani border. While Delhi clamors to proffer the anti-thesis that Islamabad’s perceptions about Bharat are incorrect–Washington’s retort on this line is “deal with the perception”, and “resolve the issues”.

  • The Pentagon, in particular, has sought more pressure on New Delhi, according to U.S. and Indian officials. WSJ
  • Current and former U.S. officials said the discussion in Washington over how to approach India has intensified as Pakistan ratchets up requests that the U.S. intercede in a series of continuing disputes.
  • The directive concluded that India must make resolving its tensions with Pakistan a priority for progress to be made on U.S. goals in the region, according to people familiar with its contents. Times of India
  • Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has been among the more vocal advocates of encouraging Delhi to be more “transparent” about its activities along the countries’ shared border and to cooperate more with Pakistan. WSJ

A debate continues within the administration over how hard to push India, which has long resisted outside intervention in the conflict with its neighbor. The Pentagon, in particular, has sought more pressure on New Delhi, according to U.S. and Indian officials. Current and former U.S. officials said the discussion in Washington over how to approach India has intensified as Pakistan ratchets up requests that the U.S. intercede in a series of continuing disputes.

During the Strategic Dialog with Pakistan, the US tacitly, and publicly accepted Pakistan’s Strategic Depth and role in brining peace to Afghanistan. This is anathema to Delhi which wants to pressure Pakistan from both sides.

The Wall Street Journal and major media outlets are portending the thesis that the Obama Administration is asking Delhi to be stop terror activities against Pakistan, listen more carefully to Islamabad’s complaints, and resolve the Kashmir and water disputes with Pakistan. This is not music to the Delhi politicians who usually ignore the Pakistani point of view and take the Kashmir discussion into a cul de sac called bilateral talks. During bilateral talks Delhi then kills all discussion by loudly proclaiming that Kashmir is an integral part of Bharat (aka India) and the topic of boundaries are nut subject to negotiations. Since 1947 dozens of these “talks have been held between Delhi and Pakistan–all ending in abject failure due to obduracy, intransigence and skullduggery of Delhi. Pakistan is not the only country that has faced Bharati tergiversation. Delhi has been unable to resolve its boundary disputes with any of her neighbors, namely Nepal, Bhutan, Sikkim, Myanmar, China, Bangladesh.

Pakistan has long regarded Afghanistan as providing “strategic depth”—essentially, a buffer zone—in a potential conflict with India. Some U.S. officials believe Islamabad will remain reluctant to wholeheartedly fight the Islamic militants based on its Afghan border unless the sense of threat from India is reduced.

Pakistan does not see the threat from the same prism that Bharat sees the threat. For Pakistan the threat is Bharat–whether from the Eastern of the Western border. Islamabad feels that it can deal with the Pakhtuns through battles, negotiations, and with projects. Delhi wants to dominate Afghanistan as part of its colonial legacy and its flights of fancy headed towards regional power. For Pakistan it is a struggle for survival. For Bharat is it a point of prestige and stature. The Pakistanis will fight with a lot more determination than the Bharatis can ever hope to.

U.S. and Indian officials say the Obama administration has so far made few concrete demands of New Delhi. According to U.S. officials, the only specific request has been to discourage India from getting more involved in training the Afghan military, to ease Pakistani concerns about getting squeezed by India on two borders.

Can President Obama over rule or convince its Bharati constituencies supported on the Hill by the Bharati lobby and their AIPAC allies? This is the question that vexes the Obama Administration. His second term and his presidency depends on the ability to face the onslaught of the lobbies. If he follows the Bush doctrine and does not stand up to the Bharatis, the Afghan war will go on in perpetuity without any chance of ever achieving peace. The Afghan war is not popular with the American people and the US military. They want a face saving exit. Bharat was given a decade, and it cannot deliver peace in Kabul. The US military and the CIA believe that no peace is possible in the Hindu Kush without Islamabad on board. The only way to get wholehearted Pakistani cooperation is to resolve its disputes with Delhi and to give it a major role in Afghanistan.

  • Will India ever know what US is hiding about Mumbai
  • Artcile 370: Can India reverse the clock on Kashmir
  • Delhi packs up, retreats from Afghanistan

“This is an administration that’s deeply divided about the wisdom of leaning on India to solve U.S. problems with Pakistan,” said Ashley Tellis, an analyst at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace who has discussed the issue with senior officials in the U.S. and India. “There are still important constituencies within the administration that have not given up hope that India represents the answer.”

India has long resisted outside involvement in its differences with Pakistan, particularly over the disputed region of Kashmir. But, according to a U.S. government official, a 56-page dossier presented by the Pakistani government to the Obama administration ahead of high-level talks in Washington last month contained a litany of accusations against the Indian government, and suggestions the U.S. intercede on Pakistan’s behalf.

Pakistan has forcefully and unequivocally informed Washington that Bharati dourness about Pakistan stems from its historic inability to accept the reality of Pakistan which it feels was artificially and temporarily “partitioned” from the mother country. Ms. Hillary Clinton and many in the Democratic Party had been unable to see this Pakistani point of view–initially they brushed it off as Pakistani paranoia. However lately there have been signs that the American tin ear has melted and Pakistani concerns about its sovereignty viz a viz Bharat have found some measure of understanding in Washington.

  • Is US using Liability, Design excuses to ‘delay’ 123-Nuclear deal with India?
  • Post dialogue analysis: Pakistanis not impressed with US promises
  • India cannot match Pakistan in its relations with Afghanistan: FM Qureshi

The official said the document alleges that India has never accepted Pakistan’s sovereignty as an independent state, and accuses India of diverting water from the Indus River and fomenting separatism in the southwestern Pakistani province of Baluchistan.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has signaled that Washington isn’t interested in mediating on water issues, which are covered by a bilateral treaty.

The Bharati media has been reacting to the sagacious and sane Obama initiative which could and would bring peace to Afghanistan. Obviously the sagacious policy has been met with a wall of traditional Bharati inexorability and stubbornness. The Bharati pundits and media wish Pakistan to go away, so that Bharat can reach out to its lands in Afghanistan and beyond. Realpolitik comes in the way of this Bharati revanchism, kleptomania and irredentism. Unable to hold on to its own fraying Union, Delhi is consumed by its desire to extend its borders–on the Eastern, Northern, and Western fronts. IN the North it faces Chinese might, and on the West it faces Pakistan’s Nuclear Mutually Assured Destruction. therefore it wants to use Afghanistan to pressure Pakistan, to aid separatists, and to form road and rail links to “conquer” Central Asia. This is not the Indian Doctrine–the religion requires them to expand into areas which Alexander and Islam had taken from them.

Subcontinental Drift

The White House declined to comment on Mr. Obama’s directive or on the debate within the administration over India policy. The directive to top foreign-policy and national-security officials was summarized in a memo written by National Security Adviser James Jones at the end of the White House’s three-month review of Afghan war policy in December.

Bharat is now trying to blackmail the US by holding commerce, currency, lobbies and other means to make it change its course–and help Delhi as a counterweight to China. Of course Delhi sees this a temporary alliance–’till it can challenge the US itself.

An Indian government official said the U.S.’s increasing attention to Pakistani concerns hasn’t hurt bilateral relations overall. “Our relationship is mature—of course we have disagreements, but we’re trying not to have knee-jerk reactions,” the Indian official said.

According to U.S. and Indian officials, the Pentagon has emerged in internal Obama administration debates as an active lobbyist for more pressure on India, with some officials already informally pressing Indian officials to take Pakistan’s concerns more seriously. Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the U.S. government’s prime interlocutor with the powerful head of the Pakistani army, Gen. Ashfaq Kayani, has been among the more vocal advocates of a greater Indian role, according to a U.S. military official, encouraging New Delhi to be more “transparent” about its activities along the countries’ shared border and to cooperate more with Pakistan.

Pakistan has made clear to Delhi that it does not just want talks so that Delhi can appease Washington. Pakistan’s Foreign Minister recently told the media that Delhi must initiate a composite results oriented dialog with a schedule. Talks for the sake of talks will not work, and Pakistan is not interested in parleys to show Washington that Delhi is talking.

In interviews, U.S. military officials were circumspect about what specific moves they would like to see from New Delhi. But according to people who have discussed India policy with Pentagon officials, the ideas discussed in internal debates include reducing the number of Indian troops in Kashmir or pulling back forces along the border.

“They say, ‘The Pakistanis have this perception and you have to deal with the perception’,” said one foreign diplomat who has discussed India’s role with Pentagon officials.

An Indian defense ministry spokesman said his country’s army has already moved about 30,000 troops out of Kashmir in recent years.

The State Department has resisted such moves to pressure India, according to current and former U.S. officials, insisting they could backfire. These officials have argued that the most recent promising peace effort—secret reconciliation talks several years ago between Indian Prime Minster Singh and then-Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf—occurred without U.S. involvement.

“Our principal interest has always been to encourage the talks to resume, but we also understand where the Indians are coming from, which is that there has to be some progress on these bilateral counterterrorism” issues, said the official.

During the Strategic Dialog with the US, Pakistan clearly described the Bharati interference in Pakistan and wanted it stopped as quickly as possible. Why would Bharat need so many Consulates in Afghanistan? The number of consulates exceeds the number of visas issued to Afghanis. Pakistan has repeatedly and forcefully proclaimed that these Consulates are the dens of inequity spreading problems for Pakistan. Those Indian sponsored problems then bring pain not only to Pakistanis, but also are an impediment to US interests in the region. The US has asked Delhi to reduce its presence in Afghanistan, and there are signs that Bharat may be reducing its staff and activities that were aimed against Islamabad.

Separately, Pakistan has been more forcefully raising concerns about Indian activities in Afghanistan with the U.S. Senior Pakistani officials allege India is using its Afghan aid missions as a cover to support separatists in Baluchistan and the Pakistani Taliban, and say they have presented evidence of that to U.S. officials. Indian officials deny the accusations.

A Pakistani security official said his government also has pressed the U.S. about India’s ties to the Afghan intelligence agency, the National Security Directorate, and argued that Indian consulates in Jalalabad and Kandahar are outposts for India’s spy agency.

“Something has to be done to stop Afghanistan from being a jumping-off point for Indian intelligence,” said the security official. Washington Post. U.S. Aims to Ease India-Pakistan Tension By PETER SPIEGEL in Washington and MATTHEW ROSENBERG in Kabul

Pakistanis don’t believe ‘Ugly American’ with ‘forked tongue’

There are clear signs that the US has in many ways asked Bharat to reduce the tensions by whatever means necessary. The question is what will Delhi do to circumvents US pressure and bypass Washington’s requirements and then work against President Obama’s plans. How will Delhi resist the US military’s demands?