India and Pakistan ties, the final round (part-I)

January 30th, 2009 - 1:41 pm ICT by ANI  

By Dr Shabir Choudhry

London, Jan.30 (ANI): India and Pakistan had a full scale war in September 1965. Air Marshal (r) Asghar Khan in his book called it ”The first round”; even though both countries had a military clash in Ran of Kachh in the same year. Apart from that both countries fought each other in a protracted war over Kashmir in 1947 which ended on 1st January 1949. Many say the war never ended, as it is continuing in different form and shape till today.

History is a funny subject. We try to understand historical events through eyes of others. If four people witness an event and they all go away and explain that event we will end up having four different versions of the same event, and those listening to these events could either misunderstand, forget or overlook some aspects of the event, hence different versions of the same event. Furthermore experience, knowledge and perspective help us to formulate our views and our ideologies.

If some one completes his doctorate in Maths or Science, very few if any will question his/her knowledge or challenge his formulae like people do in Social Siences; but if some one spends same number of years in studies and completes doctorate in History or Politics, two disciplines of Social Sciences, he/she will have many challengers and critics. Even a person who reads newspaper for a few months feels confident to assert his/her claim to be an expert on history and politics.

In most Pakistani history books it is claimed that it was India who ”cowardly attacked” Pakistan on 6th September 1965, and Pakistan emerged ”victorious” in this military confrontation. Some Pakistani history books even claim that Pakistan was not defeated in the war of 1971. To them it was the Bengalis who could not maintain their independence, as if they were a separate and independent country at that time. These ”historians” and ”experts” also claim that Pakistan won a major victory in 1999 during the Kargil war.

Fact regarding the 1965 war is that it was Pakistan which initiated the war by sending thousands of guerrillas under the plan called ”Operation Gibraltar” in Jammu and Kashmir to engage and disrupt the Indian army supply lines, and also by invading parts of areas of Jammu and Kashmir under India. Pakistani and Azad Kashmiri forces under the command of Lt General Akhtar Hussain Malik invaded areas of Chamb - Jorian and were advancing towards Akhnoor, and fall of this important town also looked imminent. At that crucial time Pakistani military and political elite decided to hand over the command to Lt General Yayya Khan, as they didn”t want the credit to go to a Qadiyani General, Akhtar Hussain Malik.
Anticipating an imminent fall of Akhnoor and victory stretching as far as Jammu to cut off the supply line of the Indian forces, Pakistani government declared that their forces were advancing towards Akhnoor. Yayya Khan had his own ”interests” and reached 24 hour late to take over the command, which gave enough time to India to bolster its defences. After Pakistan’’s acknowledgement the Indian government announced that they will open a new front of their choice. (ANI)

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