In the recent attack on army camp in Sunjwan army camp, five soldiers and a civilian were killed. Every time there is a terror attack people are upset, commentators debate in the media, and politicians give a strong warning and then things cool off till the next attack. At one hand Pakistan claims to be combating terrorism but internally promotes it.
By now it’s understood that it will not abandon its deeply-rooted jihadi links that keep India under pressure. While China’s increasing obduracy in shielding Pakistan from Indian and international pressure on terrorism is a thwarting reality.
China’s goals seem to be a blend of its increasing hubris, its determination to use Pakistan to box India in, its way of indicating its primacy in Asia and to remind India on the limits of what the US can deliver to it in international forums without China’s consent.
Amidst these circumstances, we remain blind on how to deal with our Pakistan terror problem. And it’s worth pointing out that this is not due to any alleged shortfalls in our Pakistan policy. Our peace lobbies assert that there is no alternative to a dialogue and that we can choose our friends but not neighbours. But these are platitudes and not political strategies for achieving foreign policy goals.
Therefore, it might be advisable not to pander to China’s growing sense of self-importance. Instead, India should more openly oppose the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, declare the illegality of China’s presence in Pakistan Occupied J&K and increase pressure on Pakistan on multiple fronts, besides working to isolate China on both these issues more starkly in the relevant forums.
Like the early signals sent by Prime Minister Modi on Baluchistan, surgical strikes and the IWT, it should be continued thus relaying a stronger message to Pakistan.