Oct 12, 2016

Surgical Strikes and the Polity

R Jayaraman

Of late surgeons and surgery seem to have eaten up a lot of mind space of Indian politicians. Some have had to brush up their knowledge of surgery to fathom the extent of the damage that India has inflicted on our friendly neighbour. Surgical strike is an armed forces technical term with a definition and all the attendant descriptions of what actually constitutes one. Most of us civvies perhaps have no idea of what it actually is.

For example, the CIA has been deeply involved in covert operations, spying games, skulduggery and other shenanigans, all of which are well defined in the CIA manual which is kept updated to suit the times. When the master terrorist Osama Bin Laden was assassinated they had to declare under what category it belonged to, and they said that it was a surgical operation, to perhaps distinguish it from a surgical strike. Nevertheless the idea was to deny information and dare the world to disprove what the CIA said had happened. (In the case of the Laden mystery, some say that it was an operation conducted by Navy Seals, but then even the identity of those who carried out the operations remains shrouded in cloak and dagger).

In the case of the Indian operations there is a certain background to the whole series of events. The PM went out of his way to make friendly overtures towards his Pakistani counterpart. But he didn’t reckon for the army general with the same last name. While one may be a real Sharif, the other is far from it. In one of the many TV shows the former ambassador to Pakistan Parthasarathi called the other Sharif (or is he a badmash?) an egomaniac. PM Sharif came over to India and powwowed with the PM, confident that his last namesake can be handled. However the Panama incident put paid to all such hopes. That incident was a terrible setback for the real Sharif, as he had to rush to London to escape arrest and court cases in Pakistan which could have easily followed had he remained in Pakistan . He did what his predecessor Musharraf did – packed up and ran away. Although the sojourn was not as permanent as in the case of Mushy. Mushy is now safely ensconced in Chicago enjoying two things – his quota of the spirits and India bashing, both his favourite pastimes.The real Sharif returned to the country after hiding appropriately all his misdeeds and ill-gotten wealth but with a lower profile, a clear mandate to be subservient to the army, and dance to their tunes. It was under this scenario that the terrorist circus once again started its show, with a well-planned, multi flank attack.

Pakistani lackeys in India like Gilani were asked to create unrest through the supply of well cut, sharp stones (reminds one of medieval times, Solomon and Sheba) while the terrorists were trained one last time to infiltrate and perform their usual cowardly acts. That the Pakistan army has no dearth of supply of such poor saps is a reflection of the poverty and desperate levels of survival of the lower strata of the society in that land. So the incident at Uri happened. I don’t know whether that was the last straw on the camel’s back, but PM Modi had had enough of the Pak army. So he used the occasion to make a few points.

At this point it may be useful to understand that the actions by PM Modi are well thought out, planned and strategic. All those who questioned his foreign visits now understand the reason. Never in the past have had so many nations expressed so much of solidarity with India. The usually glib bunch of Surjewala, Sanjay Jha, Manish Tiwari, and Salman Khurshid were at their usual verbosities. I thank all the TV channels that they have finally kept out Mani Shankar Iyer whose barb about PM Modi will surely haunt him for the rest of his life, and Manu Sanghvi. The worthy Salman (of the Khurshid variety) went to the extent of saying that “Surgical strikes are all ok, we (UPA) have also done these, but when are we going to start talking?“. Duh. He seems to be in a tearing hurry to stop hurting his friends across the border.

PM Modi’s visits, his genuineness to convince his hosts, in a very short time, of his intent to deal from a position of strength seems to have connected with the westerners. They understand only one language – that of strength. Rightly so. This world is not for cowards. Like the Paki army. The Terrorists.

And this is only the beginning.

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