SURGICAL STRIKES; A PERSPECTIVE...
While congratulating the Indian Army for its precise operation across the LoC to neutralise certain launch pads of terrorists who were ready to cross over into India to indulge in their nefarious deeds as per the dictates of their bosses in the ISI and Pak sponsored, aided and controlled puppet terrorist groups, I can't help critically looking at the uncalled for exuberance displayed by the Government of India both before and after the so-called ‘Surgical Strikes’. Call it; uncalled for euphoria, chimpanzee like thumping of chest; or whatever, it appears to be nothing but an overreached step which may make the ruling elite rue for its love for favourable noises, propaganda and publicity, something which none of the previous successive Indian Governments had gone in for to this extent.
Last few days were, anyhow, good fun watching drama on some of the top TV channels with several ex officers from various forces along with a full brigade of prime time TV actors wielding moustaches of different sizes and shapes (though some of them were clean shaved also); each of them anchors included, pretending as real warrior, survivor and ‘hardened’ nationalist. In their frenzy, they overlooked the fact that there is no dearth of ‘real nationalists’ in this country who do not shout at loudest of their voices on prime time but are ever ready to lay their lives for the nation. While watching these artists on various channels, I could not help feeling as if the 'Jumla Politics', a comparatively new political doctrine, in vogue in India, had not reached the next higher, yet deplorable, level?
It was indeed a pity seeing that this time even Indian Army, of which all of us are rightly proud of, was being used as a guinea-pig; the gun of political Jumla baji was being fired from their shoulders after coining a new Jumla, the 'surgical strike'. Conducting operations covertly, silently and efficiently within a given framework of limited time and precise instructions, is not a new thing for our armed forces. Several of such operations have been conducted by them across almost all the Indian borders. But they were never publicized like this time, which was nothing but an attempt to garner political benefits, how so ever short termed and misplaced they might have been. All these past ‘surgical’ operations were of course brought to the public notice, but in a rightful and dignified way. If I am not wrong, I can recall at least one such article titled ‘Surgical Strikes; Indian army’s new method to deal with sub-conventional operations’, written by Sandeep Unnithan of India Today. It was way back sometimes in 2014. Names of Gen Bikram Singh, some other army officers as also the Indian operation in Myanmar are also still in one’s memory.
I understand that the present incumbents of the Indian governance had to, perforce, go in for some way to wipe the 'Uri shame' from across their faces. It was certainly called for, it was required and it was necessary; but a mischievous attempt to garner political dividends at the cost of the Indian Army was certainly wrong and deplorable. Armed forces are one organ of state power which should not be meddled with politically in any way, any way whatsoever. After their successful operation, the Indian army could, through a press conference or whatever, have conveyed to the Indian populace that they have avenged Uri. There was no need to create war hysteria through the Indian electronic media, both before and after the 'Surgical Strike / Operation’. Comments of some of the top anchors amounted only to 'literally finger' Pakistan. And it did evoke uncalled for murderous, yet childish response, from the leaders of Pakistani polity; Army, ISI and terrorist groups included; all hoarsely and madly shouting and brandishing their nuclear arsenal. Using nukes is not a child's game but Pakistan is a rogue country where the real command does not vest with its political leadership. It is controlled by terror mongers including its army, ISI and terror groups with more or less direct or indirect support from China. Apprehensions about the malicious, yet expected, Chinese support to Pakistan came to the fore with surprising quickness with China declaring to put a ‘technical hold’ on the international move to ban Jaish-e-Muhammad chief Masood Azhar. In its second manifestation of ‘tactical support’ to Pakistan, China declared its intent to block a Brahmaputra tributary at its Lalho hydro project over Xiabuqu River at Xigaze in Tibet. The latter threatened move comes in wake of India’s ‘decision’ to review the Indus River Water Treaty with Pakistan.
Realising its mistake of having beaten its trumpet a bit too loudly and unnecessarily, our government had no option but to upscale the war preparations. Forces have been moved in and the border belt 'de-civilianized'. Stretches up to ten kilometres from the LoC have been got vacated, a ‘bad necessity’ which has only inconvenienced the civilian population settled all along Indo-Pak borders. No doubt this vigilance was and is called for despite the possibility of a full-fledged war to be remote. Breaching of LoC, uncalled for ceasefire violations, firing and shelling may be expected but the chances of an outright war are remote.
This optimistic analysis apart, India has to be totally ready and prepared for hostile action by the sleeper cells of ISI and of terrorists which exist almost evenly across India. To make the matter worse, there is an increased possibility of greater cooperation between rogue elements in Pakistan and dreaded ISIS, which has already penetrated our country and considers it as a potent ground for the enrolment of its new recruits.
We have to face the situation and, damn it, we will and successfully but one can, in retrospect, only wish that the politics of ‘Jumla Baji’ had not gone that far. Let’s hope that 'Operation Jumla Baji' is abandoned forthwith by whosoever is trying to carry it along.
A new era of Cold War has commenced in the Indian subcontinent. Let’s see which direction the wind blows in…