04 December, 2020

Clouded By Distrust

Will Pakistan fulfil its commitment to persuade the intruders to withdraw from Indian territory?

Clouded By Distrust
The proof of the pudding is in the eating. Let's see what happens on the ground. There can't be a let-up in the operations. What else can we do?" That's the reaction of a senior Indian official to the promise made by Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif to President Bill Clinton that he would withdraw Pakistani forces from Kargil. That sums up the Indian dilemma and also reflects the deep suspicion of Pakistani behaviour-nothing the Pakistanis say can be trusted until it reveals itself on the ground. That's the bottomline.

At end of the week, the bottomline was far from being met. Days after Sharif's Washington commitment, the Pakistanis were still sending in reinforcements. If anything, they seemed to have upped the ante, attacking all along the 160-km Dras-Kargil-Batalik stretch, desperate to reclaim territory only just retaken by the Indian forces. Alarmingly, Indian casualties had jumped dramatically, with young soldiers and officers dying in pitched battles. Between July 6 and 8, the army was officially reporting at least twice the number of dead per day than it had...



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