ad info




TIME Asia
TIME Asia Home
Current Issue
Magazine Archive
Asia Buzz
Travel Watch
Web Features
  Entertainment
  Photo Essays

Subscribe to TIME
Customer Services
About Us
Write to TIME Asia

TIME.com
TIME Canada
TIME Europe
TIME Pacific
TIME Digital
Asiaweek
Latest CNN News

Young China
Olympics 2000
On The Road

 ASIAWEEK.COM
 CNN.COM
  east asia
  southeast asia
  south asia
  central asia
  australasia
 BUSINESS
 SPORTS
 SHOWBIZ
 ASIA WEATHER
 ASIA TRAVEL


Other News
From TIME Asia

Culture on Demand: Black is Beautiful
The American Express black card is the ultimate status symbol

Asia Buzz: Should the Net Be Free?
Web heads want it all -- for nothing

JAPAN: Failed Revolution
Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori clings to power as dissidents in his party finally decide not to back a no-confidence motion

Cover: Endgame?
After Florida's controversial ballot recount, Bush holds a 537-vote lead in the state, which could give him the election

TIME Digest
FORTUNE.com
FORTUNE China
MONEY.com

TIME Asia Services
Subscribe
Subscribe to TIME! Get up to 3 MONTHS FREE!

Bookmark TIME
TIME Media Kit
Recent awards

TIME ASIAWEEK ASIANOW TIME
SEARCH  GO

about Asia Buzz  |  more Asia Buzz

Subcontinental Drift: Strategic Redeployment
How Delhi can show it wants peace in Kashmir
By APARISIM GHOSH

April 20, 2000
Web posted at 6 p.m. Hong Kong time, 6 a.m. EDT


In recent weeks, New Delhi has indicated a commendable willingness to negotiate with leaders of the separatist rebellion in Indian-held Kashmir. In a gesture of goodwill, the government has released some jailed rebel leaders. Coming after 10 years of ill-conceived and halfhearted moves toward peace, this gesture is not too late--but it might be too little. Reports from Kashmir suggest most people there are suspicious of Delhi's intentions. After all, jailed rebels have been released before, but peace remains elusive.

    ASIA BUZZ
Subcontinental Drift: Crooked Cricket
And how the Gentleman's Game can be saved
- Thursday, April 13, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Win-Win Verdict
Judge Jafri spared Sharif's life--and Musharraf's career
- Thursday, April 6, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Guest of Dishonor
General Musharraf probably wishes he had stayed home
- Thursday, March 30, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: The Final Straw
The slaughter of Sikhs takes Kashmir to the brink
- Thursday, March 23, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Small Mercies
What Clinton can expect from his trip
- Thursday, March 16, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: The Folly of Fighting
Why an Indo-Pakistani war won't solve the Kashmir problem
- Thursday, Mar. 9, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Calling Tokyo
Why Japan should be Kashmir's peacemaker
- Thursday, March 2, 2000

  ASIAWEEK
Intelligence
The story behind today's news from the editors of Asiaweek

From Our Correspondent
Personal perspectives on the news
If Delhi really wants to talk to the rebels, it must first find a way out of the climate of suspicion and hostility. Here's how: pull the Indian Army and paramilitary forces out of Kashmir's towns and cities.

 INTERACTIVE  
The Subcontinental Drift message board -- sound-off about the news in South Asia to TIME
 
A military force has no business in civilian centers anyway, and the army's presence in urban area has long since ceased to be a deterrent to separatist activity. On the contrary, since army posts are the target of most rebel attacks, they actually put civilians at risk.

The political and psychological significance of such a withdrawal can hardly be underestimated. Most Kashmiris, whether or not they support the rebels, loathe the army. The presence of armed soldiers and military bunkers in their towns and cities serves as a constant reminder of the thousands of young men who have died in the decade-old rebellion. Human rights groups say soldiers routinely and needlessly harass innocent civilians. Removing the army from sight would help take the edge off the atmosphere of rage that pervades Kashmiri cities like Srinagar.

In any event, the soldiers are needed elsewhere. If, as the Indian government claims, most of the terrorist attacks are conducted by foreigners--mercenaries and mujahedeen from Afghanistan, Sudan and Pakistan--then the army should improve and increase its policing of the border to keep these people out.

Naturally, the withdrawal cannot take place overnight. Kashmir's police force, long subordinate to soldiers and paramilitaries, must be trained and motivated anew. The army will have some time--several months, perhaps--to set up camp elsewhere. But the announcement of Delhi's intentions and a deadline by which the troops must leave will help convince Kashmiris that it means business this time.


NOTE: For those who haven't checked out the Subcontinental Drift bulletin board, I highly recommend the recent exchanges on Kashmir and Indo-Pakistani relations between Alok Rastogi and Omer Siddiqui (starting with # 71). Their messages are carefully reasoned, admirably articulated and exquisitely well mannered.

Both men seem immune to the propaganda of their respective governments. Rastogi, an Indian, says New Delhi may be morally wrong on Kashmir. Siddiqui, a Pakistani, allows that his country's military did not give peace a chance after Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee's bus trip to Lahore early last year. Both have also shown extraordinary restraint by refusing to respond to the tauntings of some of their countrymen on the bulletin board.

Make no mistake: Rastogi and Siddiqui have many strong disagreements, not least over the sincerity of Vajpayee's initiative and the credibility of General Musharraf's readiness to negotiate peacefully. But, unlike their governments, both men seem prepared to talk through their differences of opinion.

Sound-off about the news in South Asia to TIME
Write to TIME at mail@web.timeasia.com
Search for recent Asia Buzz

TIME Asia home

AsiaNow


   LATEST HEADLINES:

WASHINGTON
U.S. secretary of state says China should be 'tolerant'

MANILA
Philippine government denies Estrada's claim to presidency

ALLAHABAD
Faith, madness, magic mix at sacred Hindu festival

COLOMBO
Land mine explosion kills 11 Sri Lankan soldiers

TOKYO
Japan claims StarLink found in U.S. corn sample

BANGKOK
Thai party announces first coalition partner



TIME:

COVER: President Joseph Estrada gives in to the chanting crowds on the streets of Manila and agrees to make room for his Vice President

THAILAND: Twin teenage warriors turn themselves in to Bangkok officials

CHINA: Despite official vilification, hip Chinese dig Lamaist culture

PHOTO ESSAY: Estrada Calls Snap Election

WEB-ONLY INTERVIEW: Jimmy Lai on feeling lucky -- and why he's committed to the island state



ASIAWEEK:

COVER: The DoCoMo generation - Japan's leading mobile phone company goes global

Bandwidth Boom: Racing to wire - how underseas cable systems may yet fall short

TAIWAN: Party intrigues add to Chen Shui-bian's woes

JAPAN: Japan's ruling party crushes a rebel at a cost

SINGAPORE: Singaporeans need to have more babies. But success breeds selfishness


Launch CNN's Desktop Ticker and get the latest news, delivered right on your desktop!

Today on CNN

 Search

Back to the top   © 2000 Time Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.