India Uncut

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Saturday, January 13, 2007

Kashmir, Musharraf, blah blah blah

I don't understand why news like this should make the headlines.

Look, despite all the rhetoric, any sane person in Musharraf's place would do two things:

1. Talk about peace with India.

2. Make sure the conflict continues.

The reason for No. 1 is obvious: talking peace wins the international community's approval, especially America's, and Musharraf needs that.

As for No. 2, consider that the source of Musharraf's power is Pakistan's army. And the army in Pakistan owes its dominance in Pakistan politics to the conflict with India. Without the conflict, its budgets would be smaller, its power and scope would be questioned, and civil society would be more able to press ahead on the issues that really affect Pakistan's people: poverty, unemployment and suchlike.

So while Musharraf's got to talk peace, he's also got to keep the conflict alive. If the Indian government has any sense, it knows that. It goes through the motions, and our press reports it as if it is a big deal. Such it goes, such it is.
amit varma, 7:40 PM| write to me | permalink | homepage

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