Kashmir- The wedge beteween India and Pakistan

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The troubled history between India and Pakistan can be traced back to the partition of the subcontinent back in 1947. At the time of the independence of the two countries from Britian, it was decided that the majority of the lands where Muslims lived, would become the country of Pakistan and the remaining Hindu majority states would be a part of India. Therefore the map of the present day countries reflects these boundaries. Except for Kashmir. This was and is a Muslim majority state within pre-independence India. As per the partition guidelines, Kashmir should have become a part of Muslim majority Pakistan. Islamabad said Kashmir should have become part of Pakistan in 1947 because of the province’s Muslim majority.
In October 1947, Pakistani-backed tribesmen invaded Kashmir.

The ruler of the state of Kashmir at the time, a Hindu, turned to India for help and agreed to sign over some of his powers in return for military support and a UN-supervised referendum. However, India reneged on its promise and the referendum never happened.

The first Indo-Pakistani war started with the October 1947 incursion and the arrival of Indian forces in Kashmir to repel the Pakistanis.

The conflict ended in January 1949. A ceasefire line – now known as the Line of Control – was agreed and the UN recommended a referendum on accession. Again, the referendum allowing the Kashmiris to decide on their own fate never materialized.

A 2nd war between the two nations broke out again in 1965 over Kashmir after a Pakistani offensive across the line of control.

Recently there was another near all out war, known as the Kargil conflict, this was an armed conflict between India and Pakistan that took place between May and July 1999 in the Kargil district of Kashmir. The cause of the war was the infiltration of Pakistani soldiers and Kashmiri militants into positions on the Indian side of the Line of Control.
Fortunately the conflict was defused and an all out war was avoided.

fast forward to the recent attacks on Mumbai and the carnage left by the terrorists and deaths of many people. The main reason for the tensions and conflict between the two countries and even the recent attacks goes back to the Kashmir issue. The two countries and the people of this area will never have peace unless and until the issue of Kashmir is resolved. We propose that there be a referrendum and let the people of Kashmir decide whether they want to be with India, Pakistan or independent. If that is not a favorable solution to both sides, then at the very least allow for an autonomous zone with open borders that allows relatives on both sides to come and go. Only a peaceful solution to Kashmir can rid the area of violence and terrorism and we at Pakistanis for Peace support a peaceful solution to this long simmering conflict.

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India Pull out of Pakistan Cricket Tour for 2009

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Well we have received news today that the Indian cricket team will not be touring Pakistan in early 2009. They were due to arrive in Pakistan on 4 January 2009 for three Tests, five one-day games and a Twenty20 international. But due to the request of the Indian government, the Indian cricket board canceled the Tour of Pakistan.

Pakistan’s cricket board issued a statement stating that they were disappointed with the decision of the Indian cricket board and that they are not fully surprised by it.

Indian sports minister MS Gill made the final call on cancelling the tour, with the government’s Ministry of External Affairs having already refused permission for a junior hockey team to travel to Pakistan.

“We received a communication from the government stating that in the present circumstances, it is not feasible to tour Pakistan,” said Indian Cricket Board (BCCI) official Ratnakar Shetty.

Meanwhile, he denied that the decision could damage the next Cricket World Cup, which is meant to be jointly hosted by India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

“It will not affect the 2011 World Cup as that is a different tournament,” he said.
We still maintain sport should not be mixed with politics he said.

It is pretty hard to argue with the decision made by India. You can not play friendly sports matches with a country that may be directly or indirectly involved and responsible for the deaths of many people. Although this cricket diplomacy has been lauded in the past for helping improve relations between the two countries, it is fairly obvious to see why the Indian government reacted this way.

We at Pakistanis for Peace believe that although these games help strengthen the relations between the two countries, it makes absolutely no sense that during this time of crisis the two countries proceed with the matches without resolving some basic sense of security and peace between the two nations. We hope that due to the horrific attacks in Mumbai recently, both countries sit down in earnest and work on a long term peaceful solution to their issues, mainly Kashmir. Only then can the citizens of both countries truly enjoy peace and prosperity and an occasional cricket match between the cricket mad countries.

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Pakistanis for Peace

A little over two weeks have passed since the attacks in Mumbai, India. Since then there has been new information presented to Pakistani authorities providing evidence that militant extremist groups inside Pakistan were involved in planning and carrying out the attacks. Although at this time it is unlikely that a full scale war will break out between India and Pakistan, It is assumed that India may be considering several options including strategic attacks inside Pakistan where these groups are operating and have their camps. Combined with the American bombings inside Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan, this is exactly the sort of thing the army has feared. Having two borders to worry about in addition to unrest within the country due to the lack of safety and security for citizens and foreigners alike makes it a very difficult time to be the head of the army as is General Kiyani.

From the attacks that happened in India 2 weeks ago, arose a small but determined movement within the Pakistani community inside Pakistan and abroad where 3-6 million people of Pakistani origin live around the world. Pakistanis for Peace stared as a group on Facebook into an idea for a global forum for Pakistani and non Pakistani people to come together and demand a change for peace with India. We are tired of seeing Muslims killing Muslims because one is Shia and one is Sunni. We are tired seeing death and destruction brought to every corner of our beautiful country. First it was Peshawer during the Afghan-Russian war. Then the bombs and attacks happened frequently in Karachi. Finally Lahore and other cities were engulfed in constant violence. And now finally even Islamabad is not left untouched with the recent violence at the Lal Masjid and more recently with the horrific destruction of the Islamabad Marriott. Most importantly, decent and law abiding Pakistanis and Overseas Pakistanis are sick and tired of having to feel embarassed when we now have to tell someone when we first meet them about where we are from. A sample conversation goes like this: “Hi, nice to meet you. I am So and so.” “Where am I from?” “I am originally from Pakistan. Oh and by the way, no I am not a terrorist, I am one of the nice guys from Pakistan you never hear about”

Honestly, it should never come to that in real life. But it really has. Many Pakistanis who have never left the country do not know what it is like to go outside Pakistan. Especially to Europe or North America. We are looked upon with more suspicion now than ever. In a recent survey done in the United Kingdom, the average person assumed that Pakistan was either the country most responsible for terrorism around the world or was in the top 5 of countries listed by the survey respondant. It is a damn shame and I for one as a Pakistani American am going to do everything I can to get people inside and outside Pakistan to join us in our quest to bring a normalization of relations between India and Pakistan. Over 60 years of hostility has now only made things that much more dangerous for the neighborhood. We are both nuclear armed nations and with rampant corruption in both countries, poverty and extremist groups and terrorists makes it a very volatile situation with a very dangerous outcome. It is time for peace. Unconditional and uncontested. The people of both nations are demanding it. Now there is a momement within Pakistan and the Pakistani community. The silent majority is standing up and demanding peace. India and the world need to know that there are Pakistanis who are as determined about peace as the terrorists are about terror. The nations needs to understand that Pakistanis for Peace because Pakistan is for Peace.

This blog started as an idea on Facebook and is set up so that we can discuss the current situation from a peaceful Pakistani prespective. Keep checking for daily updates. And Please also join us on Facebook for a vibrant discussion as a group member and help support peace between India and Pakistan as well as in the Middle East and around the world!

A Movement Begins

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Welcome to Pakistanis for Peace. A group founded on Facebook for Pakistanis united against terrorism and extremism and united in their quest for immediate and lasting peace between India and Pakistan specifically but also around the world in general. Also you may visit us at our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/group.php?gid=37793413510

Thanks for visiting. And remember the next time someone asks you how come Muslims or Pakistanis don’t do enough speak up against terrorism and  violence perperterated by Mulsims or Pakistanis, please tell them that there are groups and individuals out there such as http://www.Pakistanisforpeace.com and together with your help they will be as vigilant about peace as the terrorists are about terror. Pakistanis for Peace because Pakistan is for Peace.

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