Pak Army wants to keep Kashmir issue alive: American scholar
Washington: Pakistan’s Army does not want the Kashmir issue to be resolved as this would pose a serious challenge to their existence and their dominance in the country’s political set up, a noted American scholar has said.
“They (Pakistan Army) are not going to do a settlement on Kashmir. Why would the Army allow a process to go forward that would obviate its own politics? I think that the best that India can hope for is some version of the status quo,” said C Christine Fair, author of the ‘Fighting to the End: The Pakistan Army’s Way of War’.
Fair warned that the Pakistan Army would again try to scuttle the renewed peace initiative between the two South Asian neighbours, reflected in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s invitation to his Pakistan counterpart Nawaz Sharif to attend his swearing in ceremony; following which the two leaders had their first bilateral dialogue.
“The (Pakistan) Army would undercut him (Sharif)… all they have to do is to have a Lashkar-e-Taiba attack… opportunity for spoilers,” Fair told a Washington audience yesterday at the formal launch of her book organised by the Hudson Institute, an eminent American think-tank.
“I really do not expect much out of it (Modi-Sharif peace initiative). The attack on the Indian Consulate in Herat, which was very likely done by Lashkar-e-Taiba or Haqqani network, is a really good testing of those waters,” said Fair, who is Assistant Professor in the Security Studies at Georgetown University.
Agreed Husain Haqqani, the former Pakistan Ambassador to the US.
“Nawaz Sharif genuinely wants an opening of economic relationship with India. But does he really want to take on the business of shutting down the jihadi groups, there is no sign thereof so far,” he said.
In her book, Fair writes Pakistan’s conflict with India cannot be reduced simply to resolving the Kashmir dispute.
“Its problems with India are much more capacious than the territorial conflict over Kashmir.”
The book has been published by the Oxford University Press, which is also bringing its Pakistan edition, but only after changing the cover, which she said “mocks and ridicules” the Pakistani Army.