Siachin was almost a done deal
Check out the link for map:The Hindu : News / National : Siachen was almost a done deal in 1992
Siachin was almost a done deal
Check out the link for map:The Hindu : News / National : Siachen was almost a done deal in 1992
Depicting pics of candles mourning for soldiers died in a natural disaster and trying to gain sympathy and idiotically comparing road accidents with planned terrorist attacks... your level is lower than I expected but good to know more post by post.
On topic...the recent is that India is going to stay on Siachin and Kashmir as well not to mention.If you have any guts then take it back
So go on with your ranting and crying as usual, we are getting entertained
Video: Is India's position on Siachen unreasonable?
Published On: June 9, 2012 | Duration: 15 min, 22 sec
In just two days, the Defence Secretaries of India and Pakistan begin talks in Islamabad - a meeting where the Siachen dispute is expected to come up. Pakistan says the Siachen dispute can be resolved; not so quickly says India. We discuss if India's position on Siachen is untenable.
1992 India, Pakistan drafts on Siachen
June 10, 2012
Text of draft Indian and Pakistani proposals on Siachen, November 1992:
Indian and Pakistani delegations headed by their respective Defence Secretaries met in New Delhi from November 2-6, 1992.
Indian draft (first) – 3rd Nov 1992
Consequent to discussions in the VI Round of Talks on the Siachen issue, both sides agreed to the following:
(i) Delineation of the Line of Control beyond NJ 9842: It was agreed that the immediate focus should be on restoring peace and tranquillity in the glacial region. Towards this end, without prejudice to the positions taken by either side in the earlier round of talks, both sides agreed that the LOC in this area shall be determined on a time bound basis.
(ii) Disengagement and Re-deployment: To secure enduring peace and tranquillity in this area both sides agreed to redeploy as follows:-
India: The Indian Army shall vacate their existing positions at …….. and…………. and redeploy at ……….
Pakistan: The Pak Army shall vacate their existing positions at ……… and ……… and redeploy at ……………
(iii) Zone of Disengagement: Consequent to disengagement from existing positions and redeployment to agreed positions, as noted in para (ii) above, both sides commit:
(a) that they shall not seek to re-occupy the positions vacated by them or to occupy the positions vacated by the other side or to occupy new positions across the alignment determined by the vacated positions.
(b) that they shall not undertake any military or mountaineering activity whatever in the Zone of Disengagement bounded as follows:
(c) that if either side violates the Zone of Disengagement, the other side shall be free to respond through any means, including military.
(iv) Monitoring maintenance of peace in the Zone of Disengagement: Having committed themselves to maintain peace and tranquillity in the area comprising the Zone of Disengagement, both sides agree to the following monitoring measures to ensure against any violation of this zone:
(v) Implementation Schedule: In pursuance of their commitments in paras (i) to (iv) above, both sides agree to disengage and re-deploy as per the following schedule:
Recognizing the need to bring to an end the enormous human and material losses being suffered by both countries in the Siachen area;
Noting that the Line of Control between the point NJ 9842 and the Karakoram Pass is yet to be delineated and that an understanding of the Siachen issue will eliminate an area of tension;
Considering that a settlement of the issue will constitute a major Confidence Building Measure;
Reiterating the desire to settle issues peacefully through negotiations in the letter and spirit of the Simla Agreement;
The two sides have agreed as follows:-
1) The area within the triangle Indira Koli - point NJ 9842 - Karakoram Pass will be vacated by the armed forces of the two sides.
2) The armed forces of the two sides will be re-deployed south of point NJ 9842 so as to conform with the Simla Agreement.
3) The modalities and time-frame of the re-deployment as well as the monitoring arrangements worked out by the military experts are annexed.
4) Neither side shall attempt to alter the status of the area within the triangle Indira Koli - point NJ 9842 - Karakoram Pass, pending delineation of the Line of Control.
5) A Joint Commission comprising experts from both sides will be set up in order to examine the question of delineation of the Line of Control. The Joint Commission shall commence work immediately after the completion of the re-deployment of forces and submit its report to the two governments within a period of six months thereafter.
Alternative para 1 & 2 (fall back position)
The armed forces of the two sides shall vacate areas and re-deploy as indicated in the annexure. The positions vacated would not for either side constitute a basis for a legal claim or justify a political or moral right to the area indicated. The delineation of the Line of Control from point NJ 9842 to the Karakoram Pass will form part of the comprehensive settlement to follow the re-deployment of troops.*
[* According to N.N. Vohra, then the Indian Defence Secretary, the Pakistani side dropped its reference to the Karakoram Pass]
That is the crux of Pakistani devilish intention. From NJ 9842 to draw a line to Karakoram...
Achieve by pleading what they could not by waging so many years of military campaigns (war in other words)...
Naive, is not it ???????
No way will India give Pakistan another chance to do another Kargil.
Musharraf's plan has put a lid to any compromise.
Settle the Siachen dispute now
A. G. NOORANI
The 1992 draft agreement for demilitarising the glacier must be revived
A textual analysis of the drafts presented by India and Pakistan during the talks on the Siachen issue in New Delhi in November 1992 reveals how a virtually done deal on this costly dispute was scuttled exactly 20 years ago. The Hindu could not have published them at a more opportune time (June 10, 2012). On April 18, 2012, Pakistan's Army Chief, General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, referred to the several rounds of talks since and said, “You know that they were close to a solution but then nothing came out of it. We want this issue to be resolved and it should happen. It is a tough mission for us and them, which has its costs.” In sum, he is prepared for a settlement — based necessarily on a fair compromise.
That was precisely what the 1992 drafts and the unsigned agreement that followed had ensured. Initially, each side's offer was a non-starter. Pakistan proposed an upturned demilitarised triangle — marked by Indira Col in the northwest; point NJ9842, where the Line of Control (LoC) ends in the south, and the Karakoram Pass in the northeast. A joint commission would delineate the LoC beyond NJ9842 after the troops withdrawal.
India agreed to the delineation of the LoC, but insisted on the definition of “existing positions” of both sides and the places where they would deploy. The area so vacated would be “a Zone of Disengagement” bounded by the specified “existing positions.”
Faced with deadlock, Pakistan amended its offer to read: “The armed forces of the two sides shall vacate areas and re-deploy as indicated in the annexure. The positions vacated would not for either side constitute a basis for a legal claim or justify a political or moral right to the area indicated. The delineation of the LoC from point NJ9842 to the Karakoram Pass will form part of the comprehensive settlement to follow the re-deployment of troops.” According to Indian negotiators, the idea that the delineated LoC must end up at the Karakoram Pass was not pressed by the Pakistani side.
Now, surely to specify existing points to be vacated and record them in an annex is to “authenticate” them. This does not differ from India's draft, which provided: “India: The Indian Army shall vacate their existing positions at … and … redeploy at … Pakistan: The Pak. Army shall vacate their existing positions at … and … redeploy at …”
Pakistan's revised proposal fully met India's insistence on authentication of existing positions. The deal was struck between India's delegation, led by its Defence Secretary at the time, N.N. Vohra, and his Pakistani counterpart. The then Foreign Secretary J.N. Dixit repeatedly testified to the accord in public. Matters did not end there. In the technical talks that followed thereafter, it was agreed that: (1) India would withdraw to Dzingrulma and Pakistan to Goma, at the base of the Bilaford Glacier; and (2) surveillance was to be conducted by helicopter.
On January 24, 1994, India confirmed in a non-paper to Pakistan that in 1992 “a broad understanding had been reached on disengagement and redeployment, monitoring, maintenance of peace and implementation schedule. … Both sides agreed that to reduce tension in Siachen, the two sides shall disengage from authenticated positions they are presently occupying and shall fall back to positions as under: …” Ancillary details were set out.
P.V. Narasimha Rao scuttled the deal in 1992. Benazir Bhutto followed suit in 1994, resiling from the concession on authentication. She denied the agreement and cited, instead, the India-Pakistan Joint Statement on June 17, 1989, which India had earlier resiled from: “There was agreement by both sides … on redeployment of forces … The future positions on the ground so as to conform with the Simla Agreement … the Army authorities of both sides will determine these positions.”
At that time, in 1989, Pakistan's Foreign Secretary, Humayun Khan, had told the media the accord envisaged relocation of forces “to positions occupied at the time of the Simla Agreement.” India's Foreign Secretary at the time, S.K. Singh, said he would “endorse everything [Humayun Khan] has said.” The very next day, however, the Ministry of External Affairs was instructed to deny the deal. The then Army Chief insisted in the talks being held on July 10, 1989, that existing positions be identified. An effort was made during Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi's visit to Islamabad on July 16, 1989, to resolve the deadlock by extending the LoC northwards. India's offer, described by Iqbal Akhund, Pakistan's National Security Adviser, was a fair one. The line “should run due north, that is, up to the Chinese border in a ruler-straight line,” dividing the zone. But nothing came of it.
From 1985, the basis of all the parleys was mutual withdrawal. On July 18, 1998, Defence Minister George Fernandes subverted it. “India needs to hold on to Siachen both for strategic reasons and wider security in the region.” None of the Prime Ministers or Defence Ministers had made such a claim before.
Lt.Gen. M.L. Chibber, former GoC-in-C Northern Army Command, who was responsible for planning and mounting Operation Meghdoot on April 13, 1984, in Siachen, emphatically declared, “Siachen does not have any strategic significance. The strategic importance being talked about is all invention.”
Mr. Fernandes' stand wrecked the talks on Siachen held on November 6, 1998. The DGMO, Lt.Gen. Inder K. Verma, dutifully declared that day, “How can you ask us to vacate this position? We don't care either about money or the number of casualties we suffer.” But, of course, this violates the Simla Agreement. It says, “Pending the final settlement of any of the problems between the two countries, neither side shall unilaterally alter this position.”
Hopes were revived when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told the jawans at the Siachen base camp on June 12, 2005 that “the world's highest battlefield” should be converted into a “peace mountain.” He added: “Now the time has come that we make efforts that this is converted from a point of conflict to a symbol of peace.” In the talks with Pakistan, he said, “the security of our nation would be kept in mind.”
The then Army Chief, Gen. J.J. Singh, who had mounted a campaign on Siachen, said on June 21, 2005, “We have given our viewpoint to the government on converting the Saltoro ridge and the glacier into a demilitarised zone.” He spelt out two demands — authentication of existing positions and a monitoring mechanism. Ironically, on November 4, 1992, both these demands had already been conceded.
Trust is a political decision for the highest leadership to take, based inter alia on military advice. No government can allow a veto to the army.
The last paragraph of India's non-paper of January 24, 1994, said, “An Indian delegation at Defence Secretary level is willing to visit Islamabad in February 1994 with a view to negotiate a formal agreement on Siachen on the basis of the agreement reached (in 1992).” Now, 18 years later, India should revive that offer and put the sad episode behind us.
Gen. Kayani hinted at much more than a Siachen settlement. He said that “peaceful coexistence is necessary for both countries. There is no doubt about that.” This explains Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar's repeated statement that “we are not going to be bogged down by an older mindset.” This is precisely the impression this writer formed in February from extensive interviews with officials, diplomats and others in Islamabad. Centuries ago Demosthenes said: “In important transactions, opportunities are fleeting; once missed they cannot be recovered.” Only Prime Minister Singh's visit to Pakistan can shape the relationship for a promising future.
(A.G. Noorani is a lawyer, author and commentator. His latest book, Article 370: A Constitutional History of Jammu and Kashmir, was published by Oxford University Press in 2011.)
Defence Secretary in Pakistan for talks on Siachen
Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma arrived in Pakistan on Sunday for crucial talks over the military standoff on the Siachen glacier against the backdrop of calls to demilitarise the world's highest battlefield following an avalanche that killed 139 people.
The two-day talks on the Siachen issue, part of the resumed dialogue process between India and Pakistan, will begin at the Defence Ministry in the garrison city of Rawalpindi on Monday.
The Pakistani side will be led by Defence Secretary Nargis Sethi, a close confidant of Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.
Officials said Mr. Sharma would also hold talks with Pakistan's Defence Minister Naveed Qamar, who recently took over the portfolio as part of a minor reshuffle.
Despite Pakistan Army Chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani's call for the resolution of issues such as Siachen after an avalanche buried 139 people at a high-altitude army camp on April 7, analysts believe the two sides are unlikely to make progress in the talks on ending the standoff that began in 1984.
Ahead of the talks, Defence Minister A.K. Antony cautioned against expecting any breakthrough at the meeting of the Defence Secretaries.
“Do not expect any dramatic announcement or decision on an issue which is very important for us, especially in the context of national security....You cannot expect a dramatic announcement from one discussion,” he told reporters in New Delhi.
As long as MMS and co. keep in mind that they require their political capital to push through important economic reforms, rather than squandering it away on issueless "issues" such as Siachen. As far as the ground reality is concerned, Siachen is India's and therefore we have no "issue" over it; it is a one sided Pakistani request to India.
Should Siachen be Demilitarized?
The removal of Indian and Pakistani troops from the deadly, hostile Siachen Glacier is expected to dominate talks between defense officials from the two countries, which began Monday in Islamabad.
Demilitarization of the glacier, often referred to as the “highest battlefield on Earth” because of its position at over 20,000 feet in the Himalayas, has been at the top of the agenda before. This time, though, government officials, citizens and military analysts on both sides of the border are lobbying to wind down what many see as a futile engagement.
Thousands of soldiers have been killed during the glacier’s nearly 30 year occupation, mostly from weather conditions and natural disasters. Most recently, an avalanche buried 140 people on the Pakistan side in April, leading to an outpouring of grief . In 2010, soldiers from both sides died in a series of avalanches.
Criticism of the two countries’ governments and military has been intensifying in recent days.
Only the “ego of the two militaries” is preventing demilitarization, Chaudry Ahmed Mukhtar, Pakistan’s former defense minister, said last week , The Express Tribune reported.
India and Pakistan came very close to an agreement in 1992, The Hindu reported over the weekend , citing negotiating drafts at the time and officials involved in the talks, but India’s leaders dragged their feet.
“We had finalized the text of an agreement at Hyderabad House by around 10 p.m. on the last day,” N.N. Vohra, then-defense secretary, told The Hindu. “Signing was set for 10 a.m. But later that night, instructions were given to me not to go ahead the next day but to conclude matters in our next round of talks in Islamabad in January 1993. Of course, that day never came,” Mr. Vohra added. “That’s the way these things go,” he said.
Narasimha Rao was prime minister at the time and the BJP’s [Bharatiya Janata Party] campaign against the Babri Masjid [Mosque] was in high gear. Siachen quickly receded from the government’s list of priorities.
India should revive the peace offer and “put the sad episode behind us,” A. G. Noorani, a lawyer and author, wrote in The Hindu on Monday.
Brian Cloughley, a South Asia analyst, wrote on Sunday in The News International , a Pakistani paper: “It is a very simple matter, because the region was not delineated in 1972 by extension of the Line of Control that divides the regions of Kashmir administered by India and Pakistan. It was a useless, horrible icy waste without inhabitants or any sort of natural resources, and devoid of strategic utility.”
The glacier remains that way, “save for one thing,” he wrote. “It is occupied by soldiers of the armies of India and Pakistan, far too many of whom have died for nothing save the chauvinistic pride of national leaders who could have solved the problem with common sense and the stroke of a pen if they had the moral courage to do so.”
Plenty of supporters remain for continued militarization, on both sides. “Even if India agrees to withdraw, there is no guarantee that Pakistan will not take over those heights after India vacates what it currently occupies,” a Mint newspaper editorial said in May.
“Under the circumstances, Islamabad has to stay firm,” according to an editorial in Pakistan’s The Nation on Saturday. “It must maintain its principled stand on all the disputes. A desire for peace is fine but it does not come easily especially in an atmosphere of mistrust and aggression.”
On the glacier, which hits heights of as much as 22,000 feet, the “fight is against the mountain, not the man,” Declan Walsh of The New York Times wrote in April. “Patrolling soldiers tumble into yawning crevasses. Frostbite chews through unprotected flesh. Blizzards blow, weapons seize up and even simple body functions become intolerable,” he wrote.
The horrid conditions are sometimes compounded by a lack of military preparedness. On the Pakistan side, cough syrup bottles serve as the base for kerosene lamps, empty ghee cans as makeshift hot water heaters and the hopeless, futile nature of the tour of duty seems to dominate the minds of the men who are sent there, as described in this “Letter From Siachen .”
The Siachen engagement has been viewed as a particularly poisonous part of the India and Pakistan conflict for decades. ”This is like a struggle of two bald men over a comb,” Stephen P. Cohen of the Brookings Institution told Barry Bearak of The New York Times in 1999 . ”Siachen is the epitome of the worst aspects of the relationship.”
Despite a seeming groundswell of support for demilitarization, Indian officials have already warned that the engagement may continue. “Don’t expect dramatic decisions or announcements on the issue,” India’s current defense minister, A.K. Antony, said last week .
India Ink asks readers from Pakistan and India: Are military and government egos standing in the way of a much-needed demilitarization of Siachen? Or is a military presence on the glacier a necessary part of either India’s or Pakistan’s defense strategy?
Pakistan playing hard ball on Siachen?
New Delhi: The Defence Secretaries of India and Pakistan on Monday began talks on the military standoff on Siachen. Reports say that Pakistan wants withdrawal of troops from the glacier, but it could reject a settlement on Sir Creek if India refuses.
The two-day talks on the Siachen issue, part of the resumed dialogue process between India and Pakistan, are being held at the Defence Ministry in the garrison city of Rawalpindi.
The Indian delegation is led by Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma while the Pakistani side is headed by Defence Secretary Nargis Sethi, a close confidant of Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.
Despite Pakistan Army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani's call for the resolution of the Siachen issue after an avalanche buried 139 people at the high-altitude army camp on April 7, analysts believe the two sides are unlikely to make progress in the talks on ending the standoff that began in 1984.
Ahead of the talks, Indian Defence Minister AK Antony cautioned against expecting any breakthrough at the meeting of the Defence Secretaries.
"Do not expect any dramatic announcement or decision on an issue which is very important for us, especially in the context of national security," he told reporters in New Delhi last week.
India has a "clear-cut position" on the Siachen issue which the Defence Secretary will explain to the Pakistani side during the talks, Antony said.
India's Cabinet Committee on Security discussed the Siachen issue at a meeting last Thursday.
Officials said Sharma will also hold talks with Pakistan's Defence Minister Naveed Qamar, who recently took over the portfolio as part of a minor reshuffle.
An unnamed Pakistani official told The Express Tribune that Islamabad was awaiting New Delhi's response to a "non-paper", with a roadmap for resolving the Siachen issue, that was handed over to India during the last round of talks.
"We expect to hear India's response in the discussions," the official said.
According to the proposal, Pakistan wants India to pull back troops to the positions in 1984.
India has called on Pakistan to authenticate and demarcate the 110-kilometre Actual Ground Position Line on the Siachen glacier.
The Express Tribune quoted Pakistani officials as claiming that India feared that a troop pullback "would set a troubling precedent and put pressure on New Delhi to resolve the festering dispute of Jammu and Kashmir".
During a visit to the site of the avalanche at Gyari on May 3, Pakistan Army chief Gen Kayani too contended that India had hardened its position on the Siachen issue, especially compared to the situation in 1989, when the two sides were "close to a resolution".
Stung by the occupation of strategic heights in the Kargil sector in 1999, India has insisted on the authentication and demarcation of current military positions on Siachen.
The move is aimed at thwarting the possible re-induction of troops by Pakistan after any demilitarisation of the glacier.
President Asif Ali Zardari raised the issue of demilitarising Siachen when he met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during a private visit to India a day after the glacier hit the Pakistan Army camp.
Its all about trust .. which we don't have on PAK even no 1 have ...
Unseen thaw in Pak army thinking
India goes into Monday's Siachen talks with its army's hardline position in Islamabad [ Images ], but if it makes some effort to probe attitudes over there, it might be surprised, says Jyoti Malhotra
India may have already ruled out a breakthrough in the Siachen dispute with Pakistan when the two defence secretaries meet on Monday, but the fact remains that both sides will take serious judgement calls on the progress of the bilateral relationship that could have a serious bearing on a possible visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [ Images ] to Pakistan later this year.
Significantly, for the first time since 1992, when India and Pakistan nearly agreed to disengage, authenticate their respective ground positions and withdraw troops from their eyeball-to-eyeball locations on the Siachen glacier, the Pakistani army and Dr Singh seem nearly on the same page.
As far back as 2005 while on a visit to Siachen base camp, Dr Singh had announced the best thing the two countries could do was to stop the ecological destruction of the glacier on which troops from both countries had been stationed since 1984, and convert it into a "mountain of peace".
His UPA government has never formally disowned that statement, although Defence Mminister A K Antony, briefing journalists last week after the Cabinet Committee on Security cleared the line for Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma's talks in Islamabad, insisted it was impossible to expect a "dramatic announcement or decision on an issue which is very important for us, especially in the context of (our) national security".
In fact, it is the Indian army [ Images ], speaking through officials on the condition of anonymity, that has considerably hardened its position, certainly since the near-breakthrough in 1992 and more so since the Kargil [ Images ] conflict in 1999.
Then and now
According to defence ministry sources, Sharma will tell his Pakistani counterpart during the 13th round of the Siachen talks over the next two days that Pakistan must not only 'authenticate' troop positions of both armies on the Saltoro ridge of the Siachen glacier, but follow with a proper 'delineation' of the Actual Ground Position Line (AGPL) on the map as well as on the ground, which in turn should lead to a 'demarcation' of the border.
Only then, the sources said, would India consider disengaging and redeploying its troops from the heights of the Saltoro ridge of the glacier on which Indian troops have been stationed since 1984.
This position by the Indian army is much more hardline than the positions it took in 1989, when Rajiv Gandhi [ Images ] and Benazir Bhutto [ Images ] were prime ministers and a deal on Siachen was almost said to have been done, or in 1992, when then defence secretary and current Jammu & Kashmir [ Images ] governor N N Vohra nearly broke through the Siachen deadlock.
Of course, the Indian army argues the Kargil invasion in 1999 had changed the entire discourse and vindicated its position that the Pak army is not to be trusted.
In 1989 and in 1992, the Indian army's insistence that the Pak army authenticate its ground positions, both current and those it would relocate to, included one significant compromise. Which was that the authentication of positions would not be put into the main document but in the annexures to the main document.
The latter would only contain a reference to the annexure, delineating the positions on a two-grid reference. The Pak army conceded this was a major face-saving device, especially since it had always held that the Indian army, by racing to the Saltoro ridge in 1984, had violated the Shimla agreement.
If it agreed to authenticate the Indian army's positions, Pak army officials said, it would be accepting those transgressions.
Clearly, no Pak army nor government leadership would be able to survive if it were seen to be acknowledging that it was sanctioning the heights on which Indian troops were stationed.
On the other hand, after the Indian army evicted soldiers of the 6 Northern Light Infantry at Kargil, it began to get much more powerful, with the result that the earlier compromise offer of authentication in the annexures was not repeated.
That is why the Indian army's newest three-step negotiating position with the Pak side on Monday-- to authenticate, delineate and demarcate -- is doomed to fail from the start. The Pak army believes itself responsible for Pakistan's security, especially vis-a-vis India, and will never negotiate from a starting position of weakness.
But conversations with several Pak military analysts here over the past few days, on the margins of a conference organised by the Islamabad-based think-tank, Jinnah Institute, and the Delhi-based Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation, indicate there could be some space between the extreme positions adopted by the two countries.
The conversations were held on the condition of anonymity, considering the sensitive nature of the subject.
According to the first analyst, Paki chief of army staff Gen Ashfaq Kayani's invitation to the Islamabad-based correspondent of The Hindu newspaper in early May, to travel with him to Gyari in the Siachen glacier, the site of a major snowslide in April in which 139 soldiers and civilians lost their lives, is more significant than has been acknowledged in Delhi [ Images ] so far.
Considering the correspondent, who cannot even travel to Rawalpindi (a mere 25 km from her house in Islamabad) without permission, but shared breathing space with Kayani -- and even a briefing, admittedly with three other Pak journalists, by the cream of the army officer corps -- certainly means the army is sending some sort of a message that it wants to seriously talk to New Delhi.
The Pak military analysts Business Standard spoke to were unwilling to threadbare analyse the meaning of Kayani's gesture, but pointed to two distinct changes taking place in their army, the first related to terrorism and the second to India.
The first change broadly refers to the fact that the Pakistan army [ Images ] is privately willing to acknowledge its role in the creation of terrorists, both against India and the US in Afghanistan.
It is beginning to realise that the monster of terrorism it helped create is seriously biting back and, as one military analyst said, "The Pakistani army continues to be a predator, but it seems to be beginning to realise that it needs India's help in eliminating this monster."
According to a second analyst, "India's successful economic reform and, conversely in Pakistan, the mistaken identification of the Pakistani army as the state, which has given rise to skewed economic processes, means the Pakistani army is looking to at least partially withdraw from some strategies of politics and governance that are the natural domain of the state."
None of this means the Pak army is ready to give up its primary role in Pakistan's polity, the analysts insisted, but it does mean the army could be willing to at least consider the fact that India is no longer its chief enemy.
Certainly, Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma is not going armed to Pakistan with a solution to the Siachen conflict, especially as India believes Siachen must be a part of several other confidence-building measures that both countries must put in place before final solutions are achieved.
But, if Sharma is willing to look beyond the obvious and probe beneath the surface in his conversations with his counterpart, as well as with Pak army officials, he just might be surprised on what he comes up with.
Jyoti Malhotra in Islamabad
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