Friday, September 29, 2006

J&K Flip-Flop

At the time of writing this post, Mr. Pervez Musharraf may have yet again flipped on his own statements and issued vehement denials of his own claims. This flip-flopping is characteristic of the General. So it comes as no surprise that the General wrote down one set of claims and ideas in his 'memoirs' and then refuted his own written claims, even going to the extent of feigning ignorance of what was written in his own book!!

The story thus far is that Musharraf has claimed in his 'memoirs' that the C.I.A. paid the Pakistani Govt millions of dollars in return for the 600 or so suspected 'terrorists' that are now spending their time in the confines of detention centres around the planet (not to speak the *care* with which they are handled). Such a monetary renumeration by any agency of the United States Govt is not permissible as per U.S. law. Not that the current U.S. administration isnt capable of flagrantly violating its own laws! :P .... Anyways, Musharraf then went on to refute his own claims during an appearance on Wolf Blitzer's show on CNN, by saying that such a remark was never made in the book and that he may have to review some changes in the book. He implicitly said that the Pakistan Govt was not a recepient of any monetary rewards given by the C.I.A.

One can see the same pattern of flip-flopping in the J&K issue as well. Musharraf has on several ocassions offered conflicting views on Kashmir and its role vis-a-vis Indo-Pak relations. Today he says, "Pakistan is willing to sit at the table and discuss all possible alternatives for seeking a solution to the J&K and other problems". The next day, he does a flip-around and says, "Pakistan cannot ignore the aspirations of Kashmiris to be independant and hence cannot stop our support to our brothers fighting for that freedom. Kashmir MUST be an independant state" or something to that effect. Its this constant flip-flopping, which by the way is also the Indian Govt's story, that is so frustrating - given that both countries have many other issues such as poverty and globalization to deal with.

In the light of all this, the many other claims and so-called 'facts', which have been 'revealed' in his 'memoirs' have also fallen to suspicion. He has made some very disturbing and rather controversial remarks about the Kargil conflict, its premise, its conduct and its outcome. Some of the claims Mushy has made are:
1. Pakistani Intelligence suggested that India was planning an incursion along the L.O.C., to capture key Pakistani posts - it fails to mention the magnitude of this alleged Indian 'plan'
2. In light of these Intelligence reports, Pakistan had no choice but to pre-empt India, by launching its own incursion along the L.O.C. and this is what happened
3. Pakistan with remarkably less manpower was able to stage a war for such a long duration
4. Pakistan with the help of strategic planning compelled the Indians to deploy a maximum strength force, which included many columns of the Army and Air Force and yet 'persist' for such a long time
5. Official figures regarding Indian casualty of about 600dead is undersated. Musharraf says it is actually double of that. Pakistan, on its part, suffered remarkably less casualties in a war of such duration. Thus, he implicitly indicates that Kargil was a failure for India and success for Pakistan.
6. Much of the progress made on the Kashmir issue (btw, I dont see any) can be attributed to the operation of Kargil

These facts obviously dont seem to have gone well with the Indian polity - the corridors of power in New Delhi have chosen to either vehemently deny or ignore altogether the General's sensational claims. How much of it is truth and how much fiction can perhaps only be revealed by Mushy himself, as he flip-flops his way to hell! :P

On the Flypside, the General does seem to have a good sense of humour and is definitely 'kool' by the standards of a military dictator! Uploaded here is a video of Musharraf appearing on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart(which is a very popular Fake News Show hosted by Jon Stewart, that is an excellent satire on American & International politics):

If the video is anything to go by, Musharraf just got a huge P.R. boost in the U.S. of A. Ofcourse, where he really needs such a positive P.R. is in his own homeland, where by the day, he seems to be making more foes than allies.

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