DOES OUR MAINSTREAM MEDIA UNDERSTAND THE D OF DIPLOMACY OR S OF STRATEGY
The charade of Indian MSM discussing the India-Pakistan engagement in a typically shrill and surcharged manner is nothing new, but the discourse plummeted to such abysmal depths of naïvétè and stupidity that one really wondered whether whether IQ of our premier journalists has just evaporated or is driven so much by personal agendas that all sense of perspective has been lost.
Contrast this with reporting in the Pakistan media. They seem to have got a far better measure of Indian diplomacy than the Indians. All their major newspapers highlighted the success of India's diplomacy after the PM Modi visited UAE and brought off a diplomatic coup with remarkable dexterity. A Pakistani news service carried the headline "Modi steps into the wedge between Pakistan and UAE". All the Pak newspapers carried balanced account of PM Modi's new diplomacy of connecting India from Far East to UAE and even Iran and Israel. They highlighted his statement made with steely flourish that India would move on with, without or despite those who don't care to join in. Nobody could miss the reference. Pakistan media got that and so did Pakistan establishment.
Given this background, I find it extremely naïve on part of our big names of journalism to entirely miss the point that talks between India and Pakistan would actually have been a big reward to Pakistan and India loses nothing if the talks are called off. US, Afghanistan, Iran, UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Central Asia are all tilting against Pakistan and therefore, India has no reason to reward Pakistan with talks at this point. Ufa was a brilliant gambit by the PM. It could be turned into a success only by someone who had an accurate understanding of how things would pan out after the Ufa declaration. It happened exactly as scripted. Credit for this would go to Jaishankar, not Doval. It's a brilliant and emphatic diplomatic victory. Jaishankar understood exactly what the reaction would be from the Pak Army. He understood that Pak Army has all the levers but their understanding of diplomacy is of the sledgehammer variety, not the silken variety. So what would the Pak Army do - exactly what it did. It was such a no-brainer that when we see our experts and journalists shouting themselves hoarse and lamenting the collapse of talks, they fail to realise that India has pushed Pakistan into exactly the place it wanted to. Ask Christine Fair who has been saying right since the day Ufa declaration was made that talks reward Pakistan and enable them to perpetuate the cycle of terror-talk-terror. No clearer articulation of India's position has been made in decades the way it was done by the EAM Swaraj today, who brought home the distinction between talks and dialogue.
So to summarise. India's push with UAE, USA's refusal to certify Pakistan's sincerity in disrupting terror networks in Afghanistan, Afghanistan Vice President's threat to attack militant shelters across the Durand Line are all part of a pattern. Expect Pakistan to come unstuck very soon. Of course, there will be the usual Pakistan response on the LOC and through activation of their good terrorist networks. Nothing new there.