Thursday, May 15, 2008

Are Pre-Emptive Strikes The Only Solution Left For India

India is the only country in the world which is facing Islamic terrorists along all of it's international borders, be it through Pakistan or Bangladesh or Nepal. But, we haven't come out with a comprehensive policy of stopping the terrorist acts. What we are seeing today is a knee-jerk reaction to a problem which has to be seriously taken as it would bleed India (as Pakistan wanted).

India is a country which is trying it's best to join the big league of countries through it's economic might and positive population. India cannot afford a laid back attitude for the menace of Islamic terrorism. We cannot trust the Generals in Pakistan to stop the "tap" of terrorism. We cannot be on the defensive all the time. Being defensive all these years didn't pay anything back to India.

The big question after the Jaipur blasts is the quality of Intelligence gathering and sharing between various intelligence agencies in the country - Federal and State. The sole purpose of Intelligence Bureau is to collect intelligence through its agents in foreign countries and share that intelligence with various other agencies in the country. When a specific threat is detected against a particular city, the concerned city / state police are warned. But the big question is what sort of information is provided. If the IB says "There can be a possible bomb blast in Hyderabad" - what sense does this make ? The IB has to find who is planning the blast and where they are planning. There has to be precise intelligence. This is what Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi says after the blasts in Jaipur - "If intelligence collection is effective and accurate, there can be pre-emptive strikes against terrorist groups rather than resorting to investigations after the terrorist attack. There has to be a national consensus for a zero-tolerance against terrorism and necessary political will to fight terrorism". I cannot disagree to what he said.

Pre-Emptive Strikes:
Our political parties are almost united against pre-emptive strives. The BJP Government under Atal Behari Vajpayee contemplated on this issue but other political parties were not willing it and strongly opposed it. So, the plan was shelved. The thing is that, Intelligence Bureau and Research & Analysis Wing (RAW) - India's external intelligence agency are quite adept at Intelligence gathering. They have the address, passport numbers, telephone numbers of India's most wanted criminal, Dawood Ibrahim's (whom the US stamped as an International Terrorist) residences at Karachi and Islamabad in Pakistan and we have many times handed over photos and intelligence gathering to Pakistani authorities waiting for them to hand him over to us to stand trial for killing more than 250 people through Mumbai Blasts. But, they never agreed to those facts. The same goes for India's most wanted 20 criminals - Islamic and Khalistani (Sikh) terrorists hiding in Pakistan. Pakistan refuses to acknowledge their presence on their soil.

Till now, the terrorists were targeting only Metropolitan cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bangalore. Now, they have moved on to hinter lands and to smaller cities like Varanasi (targeting Lord Shiva's most important shrine), Ayodhya (place Lord Rama was born), Ludhiana and now Jaipur. It is to be noted that lot of Muslims also perished in these bomb blasts along with Hindus. Terrorists dont care if their brethren are killed - what they care is their penchant to kill and create mayhem!! Due to this senseless behavior, the terrorists have killed 60 people in Jaipur - some of them Muslims. It is to be noted in this context that a large group of Muslims took out a rally in Varanasi condoning the blasts and those creating havoc in the name of Islam. People have realized that they can achieve nothing through violence. End of the day, it is only the common man who is suffering.

India cannot afford such terrorist strikes and something has to be done to stop them.
So, what do we do now ? Wait for another terror strike ? How about a change of tact ?
Why not take the war to the door steps of the enemy ? I think it is hightime we go for pre-emptive strikes. Once we eliminate big shots like the gangsters, Dawood Ibrahim, Tiger Memon, Chota Shakeel, Jaish-E-Mohammad head, Moulana Masood Azhar,Hizbul Mujahideen Chief, Syed Salahuddin, Khalistan Zindabad Force head, Ranjit Singh, Khalistan Commando Force head, Paramjit Singh Panjwar and last but not the least, Lashkar-E-Tayyaba chief, Hafeez Mohammad Sayeed then their cadres can be easily handled.

Once the heads keep rolling, we can see the cadres lose faith and come back to the main stream. Same time, we need to encourage moderate leaders in these fundamentalist organizations.

Since the present strategy is not working and we are losing common people in hundreds, it is time we go for pre-emptive strikes.

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