NEW YORK – In a scathing editorial against Indian government’s decision to revoke Article 370, The New York Times, one of the leading newspapers of the United States, has appealed to China to join with the United States, and the United Nations to prevent what it called “India’s folly” in Kashmir.
“The United States, China, the United Nations and other powers with influence over India and Pakistan must urgently do what they can to prevent India’s folly from escalating into a perilous and unpredictable regional crisis,” reads the editorial.
The newspaper warned that New Delhi revoking the “semi-autonomous” status of Kashmir “is dangerous and wrong. Bloodshed is all but certain, and tension with Pakistan will soar.”
The editorial headlined, “India Tempts Fate in Kashmir, ‘The Most Dangerous Place in the World’,” also warned, “By revoking the special status of the mountainous territory, India is courting conflict with Pakistan.”
Reminding Indian government of the volatility of the decision regarding Kashmir’s special status, it said “The Indian government knows how incendiary its actions are, which is why, before making the announcement on Monday, it ordered tens of thousands more troops into Kashmir, put major political figures under house arrest, ordered tourists to leave, closed schools and cut off internet services”.
However, the newspaper’s editorial referred to US developing closer ties to India and said, “The United States and China must not allow Kashmir to become a pawn in their ongoing disputes.”
The editorial, which invoked former President Bill Clinton’s characterisation of Kashmir as the “most dangerous place on earth,” quoted the Pakistan Foreign Ministry as saying, “Pakistan will exercise all possible options to counter the illegal steps,” and opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif warning, “Kashmir is the jugular vein of Pakistan, and anyone laying a hand on our jugular vein will meet a frightful end.”
It also recalled that “Muslim militants, often backed by Pakistan, joined the fray, striking at Indian troops in Kashmir and at targets deep inside India, including a multiday killing spree in Mumbai in 2008 that left more than 160 people dead.”
In asking for US and Chinese action, the editorial said, “The fray is not without global implications. Under President Trump, the United States has shifted its favors from Pakistan, a longtime recipient of American aid, to India, which the administration perceives as a bulwark against China. China, meanwhile, has become an ally and financial patron of Pakistan.”