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And once more, the balloon strains visibly at its moorings - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
And once more, the balloon strains visibly at its moorings

The late crises and current crisis in Mumbai are events of dire portent.  The possible consequences cannot be overstated.  The facts on the ground are highly troubling: the specific targeting of specified foreign nationals; the apparent – curiously apparent – ISI links; the targeting of the Oberoi (Mr Biki Oberoi PV was honoured by HM the King of Morocco for his contributions to Indo-Moroccan relations; it should not require much thought to recall the Islamist view of moderate Morocco, or to imagine how the appointment of Mr Oberoi to a Moroccan order was seen in Islamist quarters; the Oberois are themselves a family emanating in pre-Partition Jhelum, in what is now Pakistan, and were forced to flee after Partition); and, ominously, the seizure of Nariman House, the Chabad house in Mumbai, and the taking of hostages there.


What is more, regardless of the facts on the ground, the political factors exert themselves.  Whether or not DM is or is not a franchise of IM, what links the terrorists have or have not to any AQ franchise or to ISI elements, is in one sense immaterial.  Were it to transpire – and should it so transpire, the revelation would inevitably come too late – that the apparent ISI involvement was manufactured, and that this was the most successful ‘false-flag’ operation in history, it would not, actually, matter.  The Government of India have little choice save to blame Pakistan.  To concede that the attacks were the work of domestic terrorists acting without Pakistan ISI support, would be to bring down the government; to bring down the government of the day would be to install BJP as the government, who are considerably more suspicious of and inimical to Pakistan than are Congress.  The transition in the United States merely amplifies the pressures upon Mr Bush and Mr Obama together to back India and pressure Pakistan, again without regard to Pakistan’s actual involvement, not that anyone seriously doubts that the ISI were involved: Mr Obama, it will be recalled, strove to show some national security backbone through the primary and general election campaigns by rattling his Sabre of Hope and Change against Pakistan.  And Israel will not suffer these events to go unanswered, nor ought the Israelis to do.  Even the current capital and liquidity crises in the world will further induce a confrontation: security and stability are necessary to India’s continuing access to foreign capital, which has been the basis for its growth.


Consequences, therefore, will be incredibly serious, and even the final destabilisation of Pakistan and a nuclear standoff between the two states cannot be dismissed as being eminently, and perhaps imminently, possible.  I yield to no one in my contempt for Mr Brown and his hapless Darling, but the collapse of a hundred firms the size of Woolworths were not a tenth as serious as this continuing episode that seems to be disregarded by too many in the West.

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2 comments or Leave a comment
shezan From: shezan Date: November 27th, 2008 10:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
As usual, you are enlightening, but not reassuring.

(Also, hadn't realised they had taken the Chabad house in Mumbai.)
wemyss From: wemyss Date: November 27th, 2008 10:42 pm (UTC) (Link)

I can be the one thing, or the other.

Of course, it's a human tragedy, but that is taken as read. My competence extends solely to the geopolitical ramifications, and they are ugly indeed.
2 comments or Leave a comment