Ananya Singh writes about the root, reality, and ramifications of the Surgical Strikes on the Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir Based Terror Camps.
The hopes of the opposition in New Delhi were shattered when the Indian Government, after being cautioned by the military veterans, declined to release the video footage of the surgical strike on terrorist camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
The surgical strike has given a huge political boost to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his coalition. Hence, in an obvious reaction to the brimming popularity of the ruling party, the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) tried to discredit the government by doubting the authenticity of the operation, demanding proof and claiming that such strikes had taken place even during previous regimes.
What is Surgical Strike?
A surgical strike is “a calculated manoeuvre to ensure you deliver maximum damage which gives a big surprise to your adversary”, explained former air chief Fali Homi Major.
Retired Lt General Shankar Prasad briefed that – “The ground is very tough. The targets are movable targets. It means carrying out an attack and coming back without any damage to yourself,” the retired general said, adding, “every single sepoy is briefed on the sketch. Everyone in the team has specific responsibility.”
The Line of Control (LoC) is the military control line between the Indian and Pakistani controlled parts of the state of Kashmir and Jammu—a line which, to this day, does not constitute a legally recognized international boundary but is the de facto border, and hence, both calculated & miscalculated military moves are quite common in this region.
Eyewitnesses living across the Line of Control (LoC) have provided The Indian Express with graphic accounts of last week’s Indian Army special forces strikes on jihadists’ staging posts. The described how bodies of those killed in clashes before dawn on September 29 were loaded onto trucks for secret burials. The eyewitnesses also described intense fire engagements that destroyed makeshift buildings that housed jihadists before they left for the last stage of their journeys across the LoC.
However, eyewitness accounts, as well as intelligence records obtained by The Indian Express, suggest that fatalities in the raids may have been lower than the 38-50 killed attributed to Indian officials in reports, including in this newspaper, and have caused little damage to jihadist logistics and infrastructure.
Will those testimonies be enough? Because an idea to be considered here is that just as all the glitters ain’t not gold, similarly, all that one might hear may not be the absolute truth.
Will India and Pakistan Go to War Soon?
The current situation in the Middle East is fairly-provoking enough for the manifestation of a massive third world war But the mass evacuations of nearly 1000 villages and the secret yet swift bunker building task being undertaken by the Indian army amid the recent escalations between India and Pakistan in Kashmir propound a far more terrifying question. Will India and Pakistan Go to War Soon?
It all began with the Uri-attack. New Delhi alleged Islamabad of sponsoring terrorism and anti-national activities within the former’s territories. Islamabad denied. Is New Delhi weaving stories or is Islamabad playing a puppeteer? Let’s examine the evidences at hand.
“People of Pakistan should question their leadership on why, when both countries gained freedom together, while India exports software, Pakistan exports terrorists“, Prime Minister Modi said, reacting sharply on the alleged Pakistan-backed Uri attack which killed 18 Indian soldiers.
Islamabad responded by saying that New Delhi must corroborate its claims with substantial evidences and not just make vague accusations. Two days later, New Delhi, already enraged with the deadly attack with AK-47s and grenades, presented proof that the terrorists who attacked an army base in Uri came over from Pakistan to Pakistani envoy Abdul Basit. The government said that two men arrested with the help of villagers have said they belong to Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir and escorted the four terrorists cross over the border. One of the terrorists who was shot dead has been identified as a resident of Muzzaffarabad. Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar also told the Pakistani High Commissioner that a third Pakistani recently arrested had revealed that he had been training with the terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba for several weeks.
The weeks before the strike on the army camp in Uri saw a sharp escalation of tension with India blaming Pakistan for instigating the violence that erupted in Kashmir with the shooting in July of 22-year-old terrorist Burhan Wani. Thousands of people marched in protest over Wani’s death, and targeted security forces. Nearly 90 people were killed in the unrest that stretched over nearly six weeks; more than 10,000 were injured.
With Pakistan eulogizing an accused terrorist as a “young leader” and declaring the unrest as “a freedom movement”, India was left with no choice but to conclude that Pakistan funded and incited the riots.
At the United Nations General Assembly this year in September, Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj warned Pakistan to “abandon this dream” of “obtaining” Kashmir through serial attacks.
Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and will always remain so,” she said, rebutting the Pakistani premier, who days ago, at the same gathering, accused India of sweeping human rights atrocities in Kashmir to quell the dissent. Perhaps the Pakistani premier had forgotten of the European Parliament President’s words – “Pakistan has two faces. The open face is towards us and the brutal face towards Balochistan. We have bilateral, economic and political relations with Pakistan and if it will not change its state policy towards Balochistan, then we would change our attitude towards Islamabad and towards the government of Pakistan,”. Seems like Pakistan needs to set its own house in order first.
The war of words, the ideological clash, and the age-old rancor for one another might take some more decades before it is finally assuaged; what will happen next might still remain a mystery before it finally happens. But as we are nearing the foundation day of the United Nations Organisation on the 24th of October, a peaceful intervention by this organisation, which had long back pledged not to let a friction escalate into a devastating and ravaging third world war, seems to be the only ray of hope that holds promise for the civilians who are now caught in a labyrinth of terror.