BOTTOMLINE | Pravin Sawhney

War and Peace
India and Pakistan need to pursue realistic confidence building measures which help contain crisis
Pravin Sawhney

The recently concluded two days expert-level talks on military, both conventional and nuclear, Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) between India and Pakistan in Islamabad, was a non-event as it lacked political weight. According to news reports, the singularly 
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Clash of Interests
Kabul Express

important CBM sought by Pakistan was the need for mutual withdrawal of artillery guns 30km away from the Line of Control (LC). Two other once-again CBMs suggested by Islamabad were the need for a ‘strategic restraint regime’, and bilateral fissile material cut-off treaty. India, on the other hand, asked Pakistan to adopt a no-first-use nuclear weapons policy. Given the military dynamics between the two, all proposals were unrealistic and hence, unacceptable.

Ten truisms define military dynamics between the two adversaries. One, while Pakistan is a military threat for India, the latter is national security obsession for Pakistan. Two, as Pakistan does not accept status quo on Kashmir, it will continue with its support of terrorism into India until a mutually acceptable Kashmir resolution is found. Three, given Pakistan’s successful proxy war, India, and not Pakistan has reasons to start a conventional war.
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