Monday, December 1, 2008

Mumbai Terror

Kristol points at this piece by Martha Nussbaum, which discusses all sorts of acts of terrorism except the one that prompted the piece.  It's almost as if the academics are not disinterested scholars, but ideologues with big axes to grind.  I really lose more and more respect for these sorts of academics the more I read the things they write.  This Slate piece is also fairly inane.  

In contrast, the Indian media has pretty good reporting (especially of government failures, which were many), while the Economist has been excellent.  The always valuable Asia Times Online has a great article on the attacks.  Read the whole thing, as they say, which shows (if true) how the attacks were planned out of Pakistan, aided by rogue ISI officials, and executed by the LeT, with Al-Qaeda involvement.  Of course the Indian Embassy in Afghanistan was also attacked with Pakistani assistance.  The civilian government appears to have little control over the actions of their intelligence agencies.  

One of the reasons this makes a lot of strategic sense for Pakistan's military is that cross-border tensions will expand the need for their traditional mission--mass troops against the border with India--and reduce the urge to attack terrorism near Afghanistan.  A really interesting response--not that it's going to happen--would be for India to deploy troops to Afghanistan where NATO won't go and continue to implicitly support separatist movements in Pakistan.  Pakistan has plenty to fear from asymmetrical warfare too.  This bears costs of its own, but India has a pretty solid track record in post-conflict stablization (and has the troops to do it with).  That would squeeze Pakistan pretty badly, and that's exactly why it makes for a great barganing chip in any Kashmir discussion.  

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