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Kashmir is an occupation that will spawn intense great power rivalry

  • Kashmir is an occupation that will spawn intense great power rivalry.

By Dr Rais Hussin

The world is familiar with World War I and World II: literally a military free for all, with the exception of Latin America, parts of Africa and Switzerland, which declared total neutrality.

Since the attacks of 9-11 in 2001, the world has witnessed something close to a World War III. The non stop attacks and counter-attacks against Iraq, Afghanistan, marked by the reprisals of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, and the rest of the world, have made the Muslim and non Muslim world all the more unsafer. What are the fault-lines of World War IV, given that war is not something that can be banned. The answer lies in Jammu and Kashmir.

To be sure, Jammu and Kashmir can be solved by allowing the people in these two entities to conduct their own polls or plebiscite as per the UN Security Council resolutions.

Pakistan and China are both supportive of a democratic suffrage too. Potentially, the United Kingdom, France and the United States too; the latter if not under a white supremacist government.

Yet by abolishing Article 370 in the Indian Constitution on August 5th, 2019, marked further by a media crackdown and total blockade of social media, Prime Minister Narendra Modhi, who is widely known as a Hindu hyper nationalist and supremacist, has unilaterally changed the facts on the ground, and the very rules of constitutional engagement.

The BJP Party which controls 22 of the state assemblies, out of a total of 29 of them in the recent May 2019 general election, now command more then the necessary half of these state assemblies to amend the Indian Constitution.

By the end of 2019, if the abolition of Act 370 is approved, Jammu and Kashmir would be absorbed into India —- giving wide berth to some 370,000 Indian troops to enter Jammu and Kashmir to exert further control; on top of the 700,000 Indian troops that are already stationed there.

With close to 1.4 million troops guarding, and survelling the lives of the 300,000 Muslims in the two states, Jammu and Kashmir, will be two of the most militarized states in the world. Human rights abuses that have already become flagrant and unstoppable will pile up. Close to 1200 political leaders who support Jammu and Kashmir have been placed under arrest, with legal and family access all denied. If fascism has a Hindu name BJP is hoisting it's flag.

As a result of the above, a tit-for-tat will be the future norm in Jammu and Kashmir, with independence movement masquerading as guerrilla insurrection, to destroy the heavy military presence deployed by what Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan described as Nazi Indian BJP movement. Pakistan is not at war with India. Pakistan is against the arbitration abolition of Act 370.

As things are, Malaysia, and a bevy of Malaysian NGOs, has called all sides to seek the necessary restraints. Members of Parliament in the United Kingdom has also urged Prime Minister Boris Johnson to persuade Prime Minister Modi to cease and desist from this flatulent act of outright Hindu hyper nationalism.

More importantly, India is a key part of the Indo-Pacific Strategy of the United States since May 31 2019. If BJP party fires the first salvo, so soon after the electoral landslide to claim the majority in the Indian parliament, indeed, to change the secular character of India, it goes without saying that India cannot be trusted.

While they can work in tandem with other powers to contain any powers in South China Sea, indeed Indian Ocean, too, with which the BJP party dislikes in future, there is no certainty that India can work in a strategic pact if hyper Hindu nationalism is what drives BJP now.

This is not a boon but a bane on the Indo-Pacific Strategy, indeed the Asean Outlook on Indo-Pacific that constantly seeks for peace.

Without a doubt the fate and future of Jammu and Kashmir must return to the table of the UN Security Council as soon as possible. The Line of Control that separates India, Pakistan and China must be restored in the interim to prevent a sudden spoke among the nuclear tensions of all three powers.

A World World IV is not a distinct outlier. It exists within a realm of possibility in Jammu and Kashmir —- precisely because the areas are so small yet the stakes unbeguilingly high for all sides, especially against India and China.

China controls Aksai China. Pakistan wants Jammu and Kashmir to be under a plebiscite under the watchful eye of the United Nations. India has proceeded to poke a stick into the eye of both nuclear powers; especially after Prime Minister Imran Khan has kindly, and generously, released the captured Indian pilot in April 2019, when the Indian air force violated the Pakistan airspace.

Enough is enough!

Winning a re-election on a large majority does not imply the automatic right to destroy the regional and global stability of the Indo-Pacific, especially the whole world. An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. What PM Modi is doing is sheer occupation and annexation that entirely different from what Israel had achieved in Palestine especially after the 6 Day War in 1967; what Arabs to this day called "Al -Nakhbar," (The Disaster).

To the degree more and more Indian settlers are allowed to swallow Jammu and Kashmir lock, stock and barrel. Kashmiris and Muslims in Jammu will find themselves becoming the minorities of all minorities in their own land. When oppressed, the smarter of people and guerrilla groups perhaps, terrorist cells from other parts of the world, will break into Jammu and Kashmir.

This will mark the new cycle and more violence that may lead to World War IV.

(Datuk Wira Dr. Rais Hussin Mohamed Ariff is PPBM Supreme Council Member.)


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