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International Power Politics

It was India who took the Kashmir issue to the United Nations in 1948. Later events proved that it was a clever move by India to kill time and consolidate its hold on Kashmir. The U.N. is, by the nature of its constitution, inherently handicapped and, as its history has now made it clear, can either not have a resolution passed at all if one of the veto powers is opposed to it or even if a resolution is somehow passed it has not the power to have it implemented. Being conscious of this inherent U.N. handicap India flouted all the U.N. resolutions and recommendations one after the other with complete impunity. The former Soviet Union vetoed every resolution of the Security Council reiterating Kashmiri’s right of self determination to defend Indian colonialist stand on the issue. The other reason was the strategic location of Kashmir in south Asia. Soviets thought that this strategic region would become available to the U.S.A via Pakistan or Independence. A number of U.N representatives, sent one after the other failed to persuade India to see reason. After 1957 India started flatly refusing to implement UNCIP resolutions claiming that Kashmir was her integral and constitutional part. Progress towards a solution was always blocked by India’s refusal to hold plebiscite and balanced and synchronized withdrawal of forces on the two sides. President Truman of United States and Premier Attlee of Britain addressed joint appeal to India and Pakistan for acceptance of the U.N proposals. Pakistan agreed but India rejected the arbitration formula. Australian Prime Minister Robert Menzies also offered proposals in 1951 for demilitarization in Kashmir but India rejected them .The U.N Secretary General nominated Admiral Chester Nimitz as the plebiscite administrator but could not proceed with the job of arranging a plebiscite in Kashmir due to Indian obduracy. The U.N then tried to secure a settlement through mediators like Mc Naughton, Owen Dixon (an eminent Australian jurist in 1950), Frank P Graham (an ex American senator in 1951) and Gunnar Jarring (Swedish in 1957) but India paid no heed. Informal mediators like the Common Wealth Prime Ministers lent their good offices to bring about agreements for removal or disbandment of troops necessary for a free and impartial plebiscite but India turned down. This change in india’s attitude outraged the world conscience and it became crystal clear that India was hell-bent on occupying Kashmir in disregard of the wishes of People and in repudiation of Security Council resolutions.

However, the nuclear tests by India and Pakistan in May 1998 renewed the interest of the world community in the unresolved Kashmir dispute in South Asia. Though the international concern is palpable over Kashmir becoming a potential nuclear flashpoint, the world community at the present juncture has yet to give more teeth to the Security Council resolutions that it has neglected for so many years. It also necessitates that the international community comes to grips with all the inter-related aspects and the dimensions of the dispute.

The dire need for an urgent solution to the Kashmir dispute came to the fore recently, as India and Pakistan faced each other with their armies deployed at their borders, since December 19, 2001, when India announced its decision to deploy its troops to forward positions along the India-Pakistan international border. This Indian position in itself follows recent precedents.

A dangerous trend that has surfaced in the post-September 11, 2001, international scenario is the unspecified nature of America’s ‘anti-terrorism’ campaign, in which there is a blurring of distinctions between terrorist activities and genuine struggles by oppressed people for self-determination. Taking advantage of the unspecified nature of the ‘anti-terrorism’ campaign, the BJP government in India has seized the opportunity to attempt to clinch the Kashmir dispute according to its own thinking, by recasting the indigenous Kashmir struggle as a terrorist one. It is imperative for the international community to act with responsibility and commitment, if it has to ensure that such vested interests do not confuse issues for their own motivated ends, and lead to further conflagrations.

JKIM: First & largest Political Party of Kashmiri Shias

Copyright 2008-Ittihadul Muslimeen, Karanagar,Srinagar,Kashmir,190010