Pick a Region:.
. South Asia:.
1989, the Indian-controlled area of Kashmir has experienced extensive
terrorism by Muslim militants and
oppressive counter-measures by the Indian government.
Muslim militants have several times slipped across the border from
Pakistan to try to undermine Indian control over Kashmir. Cross-border
artillery shelling by both Pakistani and Indian military units has
led to further victims, property damage, and tensions. Some claim
that as many as 600,000 Indian soldiers operate in the entire Kashmir
region to suppress the rebellion. Estimates of the number of lives
lost since the current troubles began range from 20,000 to 60,000.
Pakistans government claims that the rebels are native Kashmiris
who have been forced into rebellion by Indias repressive policies
and tactics, the corruption of India's political system, and Kashmirs
weak economy and high unemployment. It charges that the Indian army
has resorted to torture, rape, and murder to suppress the right of
the Kashmiri people to determine their own political future through
In contrast, India's government claims that Pakistan is the source
of the trouble. India argues that Pakistan established terrorist training
camps in the early 1980s to help the Afghans resist the Soviet Unions
invasion of Afghanistan. The United States gave Pakistan considerable
economic and military aid to help ensure the defeat of the Soviet
attempt to control Afghanistan. Pakistan used American aid to finance
and train terrorists to force the Soviets out of Afghanistan.
Once the Soviets and the
government they supported were ousted from control of Afghanistan,
the Pakistan-trained terrorists turned to wage Jihad (holy war on
behalf of Islam) against "enemies" of Islam. The most prominent
of these enemies were Israel, the United States, and most importantly
India. Trained, armed, and encouraged by Pakistan, the Muslim terrorists
have carried out border incursions, shelling, and especially terrorism.
The purpose of these militant acts is to frighten Hindus into leaving
Kashmir and to radicalize the Muslim population and to convince them
that Kashmir should become a part of Pakistan.
Pakistan and India Share
While it is quite clear that Pakistan has engaged in the activities
that India has charged Pakistan with, Indian politicians share some
of the blame for the current problems as well (see Kashmir,
The solution to the current
problems is to hold a plebiscite that could determine the political
future of the Kashmiri people. Since 1947 both Pakistan and India
have agreed that a plebiscite should be held, but neither country
is willing to make the compromises (see Partition,
1947-49) that would make the plebiscite possible.