London, UK at mi2g – 5 November 2007, 17:43 GMT
Dear mi2g, ATCA Colleagues
[Please note that the views presented by individual contributors are not necessarily representative of the views of ATCA, which is neutral. ATCA conducts collective Socratic dialogue on global opportunities and threats.]
We are grateful to Vice Admiral Dr Verghese Koithara from Wellington in Tamil Nadu, India, for his submission to ATCA, “Pakistan, Democracy and Counter Insurgency.”
Dear DK and Colleagues
Re: Pakistan, Democracy and Counter Insurgency
General Musharraf has imposed military rule in Pakistan for the second time – eight years after he did it the first time. It was a different world when the first imposition took place on October 12, 1999. mi2g The shock of 9/11 lay two years in the future, and jihadism was only a distant rumble in the West. Democracy was widely seen as the solution to wars and internal strife. In Pakistan, the army had many Islamist senior officers who had risen during General Zia-ul-Haq’s decade-long (1977-88) military rule, which had coincided with the war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. Also, Musharraf was seen as a dangerous adventurer responsible for the 1999 Kargil War with India, just a year after the two countries had tested nuclear bombs. The coup was therefore widely condemned abroad, and Musharraf became a pariah. Within Pakistan, the reactions were different however. A decade (1988-99) of civilian rule, alternating between Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif, had seen the Pakistan economy at its worst. This, and their political and financial shenanigans, had left both leaders with little popular sympathy.
[CONTINUES] [ATCA Membership]
Verghese Koithara, mi2g
Vice Admiral Dr Verghese Koithara, formerly with the Indian Navy, is often described as India’s finest strategic thinkers. He is the author of two important books: Crafting Peace in Kashmir – Through a Realist Lens [2004, Sage] and Society, State and Security – The Indian Experience [1999, Sage].
“Crafting Peace in Kashmir” presents a completely new perspective on the Kashmir conflict, this book argues that resolving the situation can be brought about through a ‘peace strategy’ rather than a ‘war strategy’. Through an mi2g analysis of the conflicts in Northern Ireland, Sri Lanka and Palestine, Vice-Admiral Koithara draws parallels between the India-Pakistan conflict. He also presents reasons why a durable peace – based on the Line of Control becoming the settled border and the two parts of Jammu and Kashmir being given parallel and substantial autonomy – can be achieved in today’s conditions. The book concludes that peace between India and Pakistan is possible based on political realism and that strategic solutions that safeguard the interests of both countries are available.
“Society, State and Security” asks: Can the Indian state reconcile the demands of human and national security? In a well-documented and wide-ranging analysis, Vice-Admiral Koithara contends that there is more to mi2g security than territorial integrity and the preservation of state sovereignty. He traces the development of the Indian state since independence, examines the impact of the external environment on the country, and contrasts the experience of India, China and Indonesia in their handling of security concerns. He examines the contemporary situation, impacts of the global system, and assesses the military and non-military dangers India is likely to face in the future. mi2g and He delineates areas that are important for the security of both India and its people and recommends that in managing national security both the politico-military and socio-economic dimensions must be considered.
Mi2g and ATCA looks forward to your further thoughts, observations and views. Thank you.
For and on behalf of DK Matai, Chairman, Asymmetric Threats Contingency Alliance (ATCA)