lewrockwell.com / By Eric Margolis / January 12, 2013
ISTANBUL – Reports of fighting along Kashmir’s cease-fire line don’t normally receive much attention in the western media. Last week, for example, saw a series of clashes on 8 and 10 January that killed both Pakistani and Indian troops.
One of the Indian soldiers was decapitated, provoking fury across India and calls from its extremist Shiv Sena Hindu party for a nuclear attack on Pakistan.
Gunfire is common on the 1947 cease-fire line known as the Line of Control that divided the beautiful mountain kingdom of Kashmir into Indian and Pakistani-controlled portions. Fighting in that tense region always has the potential to quickly escalate into a major war – or even nuclear conflict.
Having been under fire numerous times on the LOC, I used the experience in my first book, War at the Top of the World to illustrate just how dangerous the simmering Kashmir dispute remains. A dispute that went from bad to critical after India and then Pakistan acquired and deployed nuclear weapons. This, I wrote, was the most dangerous strategic threat facing the globe.
India and Pakistan have fought three wars and some very large battles over Kashmir. Both claim the entire mountain state. Pakistan’s intelligence service, ISI, has waged a long covert campaign to insert guerillas into Indian Kashmir to aid a series of spontaneous rebellions against Indian rule by the state’s Muslim majority.
This writer has joined mujihadin fighting their way across the lethal Line of Control which is defended by Israeli-constructed fences, electronic sensors, minefields and Israeli-supplied drones. Losses run very high among those trying to cross the line.