Definitely not cricket.
Posted by Exile on July 12, 2006
After the atrocities in Mumbai yesterday, I have to say that I am surprised by the lack of indignation from the press. OK, everyone in the Anglosphere and the EU has come out with the usual condemnation but that was yesterday and life apparently is going on in India today as if nothing happened. Had it happened in the UK or USA then the TV would be full of it still. It would be all over the papers. But not here. I wonder, is life considered cheaper in India than it is elsewhere? And, of course, there are so many of them…
I had a look at the Indian Times to see what it had to say. Surprisingly little, it seems. Are the Indians taking it with a shrug? I seem to remember not long ago, India and Pakistan were at each others throats over such things, but not today. Though there is little doubt who the perptrators are, or where they come from, there is not much reaction or rattling of sabres to be heard. In the Indian Times, I found a small article quoting the minister for foreign affairs, Anand Sharma:
“The international community has to speak in one voice against terrorism. Pakistan should fully join the battle in isolating and eliminating terrorists. The ultimate objective is to ensure that the region does not fall into eternal conflict due to terrorists’ designs. We have to first ascertain the identity of terrorists and then establish the source of their funding. There is a global network of militant organizations operating from the Pakistani territory.”
“When credible evidence is given to Pakistan, we would expect Pakistan to deliver on their commitment”
Sharma also lauded the residents of Mumbai for observing “remarkable restraint and maturity” and not responding to the “provocations of terrorists” as it might have led to a backlash from the Muslim community. India is home to over 140 million Muslims – the world’s second largest Muslim population after Indonesia.
“It shows that the people of this country do not want to walk into the trap of terrorists,” he stressed.
Which all seems a bit restrained in my opinion. I have a sneaking feeling that the military bosses in Pakistan are busy right now though. Something will have to be done about the border areas between Pakistan and India, and the Afghan-Pakistani borders are going to need some attention too, unles Musharaf wants to be met by another round of international criticism. If he doesn’t do something soon, then he is going to have a hard time justifying his staying in power and the pressure will begin to mount.
I can’t see India showing restraint for ever, and when the incursion comes, it will be huge. The cricket diplomacy may have worked last year, but this situation is going to demand something more, and to put it bluntly, a different kind of balls.
This may be the calm before the storm.