March 1998 News


Step up aggression to regain Kashmir'

18th March 1998

Pakistan's former army chief, General Aslam Baig has urged the government to adopt a parallel military and political strategy on Kashmir with help from jehadi and political groups.

In a long article in the Muslim of Islamabad, General Baig cautioned the government not to allow the delinking of Kashmir from trade and commerce with India.

The government, he wrote, must not succumb to American study groups's suggestions that status quo on Kashmir is the only pragmatic option -- that was a 'nefarious game'.

The government is projecting a lukewarm approach and exercising too much caution on Kashmir. It must, instead, "align its Kashmir policy with the aspirations of the people of Pakistan and Kashmir, and evolve a comprehensive strategy, dovetailing political, diplomatic, economic and military policies in harmonious integration to achieve the desired objective of the liberation of Kashmir."

"There is need to expand the commitment base and take over the control and coordination of activities of political and jehadi groups with full preparations to meet any exigency and challenge. What is vital is that war be made too expensive for India... The Pakistan armed forces, if given the mission, are in a position to create such an impact..."

The former general, who also heads the Giyadat party, a small political group, suggests that "the armed struggle, along with political manoeuvre, must therefore move parallel to each other because in time and space, the armed struggle would succeed in creating the desired effect, beyond which the political process would begin to lay down the parameters for peace.'


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