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Indo-Pak rhetoric rearing head again

The statement by the chairman of the Pakistan joint chiefs of staff committee Khalid Shameem Wynne on Wednesday contained nothing new – essentially linking regional stability to the Kashmir problem and Pakistan’s determination to find a “just solution of the Kashmir dispute”. The point of interest is the timing. Arguably, one way of looking at it is to pass by merely glancing it as a predictable response to our most recent (needless) resumption of rhetoric about Pakistan, which would be most likely seen in Islamabad as calibrated. It takes two to tango, after all. PM Manmohan Singh also mentioned Kashmir in his media interaction on Wednesday.

Beyond that lies the backdrop of deterioration in US-Pakistan relations and US President Barack Obama’s announcement of the drawdown of troops in Afghanistan and Pakistan’s growing insecurities. Wynne spoke about the changing regional scenario and its “geo-strategic implications” as well as the need for Pakistan to “adjust our policies to meet the likely challenges.” Unlike their counterparts in our country, Pakistani generals never speak out of turn. Besides, Wynne made the reference in a carefully drafted, structured speech at the convocation ceremony at the Pakistan National Defence University in Islamabad, which is an important occasion..

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