The Kashmir Flash Point

By Moorthy Muthuswamy, August 2000

How blaming India and asking it to make peace with a belligerent Pakistan will bring peace ["The Kashmir Flash Point," op-ed, Washington Post, July 31] is not clear to many of us. There may be a basis for consideration that the Kashmir problem is symptomatic of Pakistanís religion based intolerance. Non-Muslim citizens of Pakistan are discriminated in voting, rule of law, employment and are treated constitutionally as second class citizens. The Christians in Pakistan have long been complaining of harassment under blasphemy laws. Pakistan is also home to Islamic extremists who support "holy war" not only in Kashmir but also in the Philippines, Afghanistan, Chechnya and Bosnia.

Pakistan has been falsely indoctrinating Indian Muslims to rise up against the "Hindu" India, which in reality is a secular democracy like America. Subversion by Pakistan supported Islamic militants, who maim and kill innocent civilians has deservedly invited Indian crackdown. It is entirely up to the people of Pakistan, as President Clinton pointed out in a speech to them in March to follow policies of moderation and tolerance to achieve peace.