A tale of two FMs

Salman must learn the art of diplomacy from Hina

Impressions

BINOO JOSHI

Pakistani Foreign Minister  Hina Rabbani  is not only the smartest lady around  in the subcontinent,  but also a confident woman  with much better articulation than the Indian Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid. Without going into the gory details of what happened on the two sides of the Line of Control  in the recent weeks, resulting in  high caliber  tensions on borders,  it is strongly felt that Salman Khurshid should learn the art of diplomacy and articulation from his Pakistani counterpart.
To say that  Salman Khurshid is a carbon copy of his immediate predecessor would not be a wrong conclusion. Shackled  by his own political ambitions and in a bid to show himself as the  man  for peace   in an attempt to get some kind of award for himself, Khurshid , it may be said, is  a man  who  speaks boldly only  when some charges  are leveled by  Aam Aadmi Party Leader Arvind Kejriwal. He  was all fire and brimstone, when it came to refuting the allegations, true or false, he would know it better.  That he was shifted from Minority Affairs – the plight of the minorities in the country is very well known-  to the Foreign Ministry, was a reward to him, politically. Why  such an honour was conferred on him, is not known to anyone. Khurshid or his patrons in Congress party would know it better.
Here is a situation.  Pakistanis fired at a village in Uri sector, killing three civilians, including  children. The Indian army  responded, and   a  Pakistani soldier was killed. That was given out by  Pakistan. True or not,  is not known, but the  Indian diplomat in Islamabad (Pakistani capital),  was summoned by the foreign office of Pakistan. But the fact  of the matter is that no army in the world would ever  witness the killing of its civilians whom it is supposed to guard. Three Kashmiris were killed and the Indian army should have kept quiet against this provocation  is  beyond the comprehension  of any one. Armies are  deployed on the borders to defend the frontiers and to give a sense of security to the civilians, not just stand there to show their presence. That presence should have  some meaning, without that there is no purpose of the soldiers  being there, where they were.
In October 2005, the Army had saved hundreds of civilians when a massive earthquake struck the villages all along the LoC. Not only that , the Indian army  had also rescued four Pakistani soldiers from a collapsed bunker of Pakistanis across the  Kaman  post in Uri sector. These facts should not be lost sight of, while discussing the role of the army on borders.
Soon after the  Charuna incident  came the  incident, which has been aptly described as butchery, in which Pakistani soldiers, according to the Indian army, beheaded  Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh  and Lance Naik Hem Raj whose throat was slit  in  Krishna Ghati sector  in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir. That raised the level of anger to boiling point across the nation. This was much more than mere the  ceasefire violation. It was  the violation of the sanctity of the LoC and  the brutality that seemed to have been  executed  to raise the level of tensions on the borderline.
Ms  Rabbani  was  there to deny it all. She did that with perfection. Her style and articulation worked as a cover for what happened on the LoC and  added  a dimension of probe into the incidents of ceasefire violations  by the United Nations Military Observer’s Group for India and Pakistan, something that she knew herself  would not serve any purpose because India would  reject it. But she made her point and made it quite effectively, unchallengeable  from Pakistan’s point of view, as Pakistan despite its volatile internal situation , political, financial and terrorism ,  had  invested a great deal in Kashmir.
On the other hand, India is having a foreign minister who doesn’t know the knowledge of  the  facts on the ground in Jammu and Kashmir, leave alone  the incidents on the LoC.   He could not defend  India in  definitive terms at Geneva, when he was a minister of state for foreign affairs during the  Narsimha Rao government. It was the BJP stalwart Atal Behari Vajpayee and   National Conference leader  Farooq Abdullah, who saved the day for India.
Being a peacenick is a good thing. It is required, but that  should  not mean that  one should be unable to send a strong message  against the brutal actions  in strong terms.

Lastupdate on : Mon, 14 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 14 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 15 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST




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