India, Pakistan could skid into nuclear war, top expert warns

Published: September 23, 2016
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Growing tensions between India and Pakistan could send the neighbouring countries skidding into a nuclear war, a prominent political scientist has warned.

“It could happen, and it would be catastrophic for both countries,” Shooting for a Century: The India-Pakistan Conundrum author Stephen P. Cohen said. Tensions reached boiling point over the weekend when militants attacked an army base in the Uri area near the Line of Control on Sunday morning, leaving 18 soldiers dead.

Uri aftermath: India whips up war hysteria

A report published by New York Times  stated that the escalating tension presented a challenge to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has vowed to bring about an economic revival in the country which could only be attained through regional peace.

The report went on to quote former Indian-held Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah remarking that things in Kashmir had remained relatively calm since 2010. This, Abdullah said, made the Indian government believe that the turbulent days of the past were over.

India summons Pak envoy over Uri attack

The report also pointed to “warning signs” pertaining to rising unrest among young people in the region over the last two years. The killing of 22-year-old Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani by Indian forces in early July served as one such instance, sparking protests across the region.

“Wani should have served as an alarm bell for the government system,” The Wire editor Siddharth Varadarajan said“Why would a young man, instead of taking up engineering, adopt a course that any reasonable person would tell him would end up in death?” he said.

Separately, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday made a strong case for Kashmir during his address at the 71st United Nations General Assembly session. “Peace and normalisation between Pakistan and India can’t be achieved without the solution of Kashmir,” he said. “We should resolve our differences in Jammu and Kashmir. Talks are in the interest of both the countries,” Sharif added.

‘India will not attack Pakistan or AJK’

Ahead of the UN General Assembly session, the primer minister and Army chief General Raheel Sharif discussed different options in the apparent backdrop of ongoing hostility with India. Going a step further on Thursday, the Indian army moved heavy artillery to forward bases along the 778-kilometre Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir.

This article originally appeared on The New York Times, a partner of The Express Tribune.

 

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Reader Comments (22)

  • Dinesh Dutta
    Sep 23, 2016 - 1:54PM

    War is not an option but what irks India is why Pakistan brings up Kashmir again and again? When Maharaja HARI SINGH signed & allocated Kashmir as Indian territory then why Pakistan is bringing up Kashmir as an issue? Recommend

  • Aspiring
    Sep 23, 2016 - 3:14PM

    Dinesh India went to United Nation and agreed to resolve the issue as per United Nation resolutions. But once a hypocrite will always be a hypocrite. India should resolve the issue as per agreed resolutions and residents of Kashmir should decide their fate by themselves. Recommend

  • k
    Sep 23, 2016 - 4:05PM

    @Aspiring:
    You are right, We could resolve that issue by force at that time but Nehru took that matter in to UN but UN Resolution no longer stands coz both Countries decided to resolve that issue between two of them(even Kashmiri separatists can not become of a party in this matter)Recommend

  • Tahir
    Sep 23, 2016 - 5:30PM

    India has not guts to attack Pakistan because India is well aware of the fact that Pakistan will lose the war in terms of conventional weapons and in the end there would be no options left for Pakistan to launch the nuclear strike on India both tactical and conventional nukes can be used by the Pakistan. It is also pertinent to mention that Pakistan has also developed the system is second strike capabilities. At the last there may be no Hindus left living in this world but there will be many Muslims living in this world.
    Long live Pakistan and Muslim world Recommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Sep 23, 2016 - 6:35PM

    @Tahir:
    Surely we can spare Nepal and join hands with our Gurkha brethren..?Recommend

  • masoom
    Sep 23, 2016 - 6:47PM

    @Dinesh Dutta:
    Because India took case to UN and agreed for self determination in Kashmir! if India is so agreement respecting why did he did not respect Nizam hyderabad Ducken !Recommend

  • Girija Shankar
    Sep 23, 2016 - 7:26PM

    In case of nuclear war, being a large country, India will win. India does not fear nuclear weapon. Pakistanis should also remember that there is no guarantee that India will not nuke Pakistan first. India can survive a nuclear war, but Pakistan will be finished completely, because it is a small country. Btw Pakistanis have created problem for many countries. If not India, some day USA will nuke and destroy Pakistan for sure. Pakistan will not be able fool the world for long.Recommend

  • One thought
    Sep 23, 2016 - 7:31PM

    Hundreds of years of living together has bred contempt towards each other. Pakistani’s and Indians do not fight each other in England, where millions from the Subcontinent have settled. I think the Brits should come back, as we have failed as nations, we cannot even provide water, food or shelter to our impoverished millions, but we spend billions on nuclear arms, this is why, we really do not deserve to be independent nations. Recommend

  • Zen
    Sep 23, 2016 - 7:47PM

    @Tahir:
    When you say ‘ long live Muslim World’ does that include the 200 Indian Muslims?Recommend

  • Zen
    Sep 23, 2016 - 7:50PM

    @Tahir:
    When you say ‘long live Muslim World’ does that include the 200 million Indian Muslims?Recommend

  • True
    Sep 23, 2016 - 7:56PM

    @Tahir:
    You sure your Muslims brethren will be spared looking at the internal tussle in the Muslim world where on average a Muslim kills more Muslims on a daily basis. We don’t have to do anything. The major cause of pain is not other Muslim countries at the moment but you. So if you vanish (hypothetically) others will learn a lesson.Recommend

  • MAZHAR
    Sep 23, 2016 - 7:57PM

    @Girija Shankar:
    And Then your will wake up ! Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Sep 23, 2016 - 8:51PM

    @Girija Shankar:

    stop dreaming, Your uncle US jee will not attack us, because your uncle likes us more.Recommend

  • sunilsm
    Sep 23, 2016 - 11:44PM

    wow nuclear, come on guys dont be over the top, at the end it will be the same for our child’s, irrespective of who fired first. so dont black mail.Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Sep 24, 2016 - 1:07AM

    @Dinesh Dutta:
    Bec maharaja hari Singh was no one to decide the fate of all the Kashmiris. It is the only Muslim majority state under Indian control, and a significant majority of Kashmiris either want to be independent or with Pakistan. As a sovereign state, India should have allowed opinion-polling in Kashmir, which is exactly what Pakistan demands, but India somehow realizes that it will have to lose Kashmir after that due to world pressure. It is obvious that India wouldn’t politically allow Pakistan to take over and Pakistan and Kashmiris wouldn’t back off from their mutual demand either, therefore this matter can only be solved by force of one state towards another. However, barbarism wouldn’t ever be accepted in Kashmir and will only prove to be a pothole for India itself.Recommend

  • Beat the heat
    Sep 24, 2016 - 3:31AM

    No one wants war. We want peaceful resolution of Kashmir issue. Both Goverments must act maturely and do not fall into this trap called war. Look at your people 50% of people in both countries live under abject poverty. Please declare a war to end hunger, declare a war to fight poverty.Recommend

  • Raj
    Sep 24, 2016 - 3:32AM

    @Ahmed : Just Google the “UN resolution on Kashmir” . Then you will come to know, it is Pakistan who avoided to implement the conditions. There are conditions in the strict sequence in the UN resolution on Kashmir which are to be followed. In Pakistan, the system
    rewrites the history in it’s favor and people are taught wrong history.After Shimla Agreement,the Kashmir resolution is null and void.Recommend

  • Pakistan
    Sep 24, 2016 - 11:25AM

    Pakistan and India are not USA. We are neither trigger happy nor in human like the inventers of the nuclear bomb. Their wish will not be granted and this notoriety shall remain theirs only in history.Recommend

  • Aqeel
    Sep 24, 2016 - 5:49PM

    India doesn’t allow UN observers to visit Kashmir and India has never conducted a referendum which was also mentioned in UN resolution on Kashmir and also thousands of innocent Muslims have been killed. So you better not talk about UN resolution and human rightsRecommend

  • Aqeel
    Sep 24, 2016 - 5:53PM

    India doesn’t allow UN observers to visit Kashmir and India has never conducted a referendum which was also mentioned in UN resolution on Kashmir and also thousands of innocent Muslims have been killed. So you better not talk about UN resolution and human rights and if you say that Pakistanis are taught about a fake past then let me assure you that Kashmir unrest 2016 is not pastRecommend

  • Aqeel
    Sep 24, 2016 - 5:53PM

    India doesn’t allow UN observers to visit Kashmir and India has never conducted a referendum which was also mentioned in UN resolution on Kashmir and also thousands of innocent Muslims have been killed. So you better not talk about UN resolution and human rights and if you say that Pakistanis are taught about a fake past then let me assure you that Kashmir unrest 2016 is not pastRecommend

  • Deepak
    Sep 26, 2016 - 9:27PM

    IT was Pakistan who refused to implement the plebiscite until India accedes to it and continued holding on to the portion of Kashmir under its control.This was the primary condition for holding a plebiscite which was of Pakistani tribal and fighters vacating POK as pre-requisite for the plebiscite and when this did not happen, the UN resolution became invalid and failed to materialize So since the old resolution is no longer valid, if the plebiscite was to take place again, it would happen only if both countries go the UN with a fresh set of proposals on plebisciteRecommend

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