It is May 28, 1998 Pakistan has tested it nuclear device in reply to Indians nuclear device test. It was a time when entire nation was celebrating this historical movement. It was a perception among Pakistani populace that now they are in equal position to India. With this overt nuclear capability no one will courage to attack on them, every one is secure enough and they can put their all efforts to make a prosper Pakistan. Foreign investors will also come in safe & secure Pakistan because the curse of terrorism wasn’t arose at that time only a visible threat of conventional war between Indo-Pak always roaming around there. But now any type of war between two nuclear states was out of question. Both countries due to the presence of nuclear deterrence will not initiate any step that can lead toward conventional war and then no one can rule out the use of nuclear weapons and these weapons will bring ruin nothing else. So in a way these nuclear weapons become a guarantee for peace because in their presence either side can’t afford to fight any war.
Both side realized this new altered situation and both sides political leadership announced they will enhance the peaceful cooperation between both countries. This was Indian Prime Minister who visited Pakistan went to Monument of Pakistan (Minar-e-Pakistan) and accepted Pakistan an independent sovereign state in February 1999. Both Prime Ministers also signed a Memorandum of Understanding it known as Lahore MoU. It brought a sign of prestige for Pakistani nation that now Indians are forced to do these kind of initiative on equal basis because of ours nuclear capability.
This situation remained no longer as good as I mentioned above, soon the controversial episode of Kargil War occurred and all the dreams of equality vanished. I will not go to this detail that who was vanquisher of this war but it is understood Pakistani army chief General Musharraf has a plan long before to the day of mobilization of Pakistan army in the garb of Jihadists. It was a planed small level operation by Pakistan army in disputed territory. Initially Pakistan surprised Indians when they came back after winter season and founded now Kargil is no more under their control. For restoration of Indian control at the outset they even tried to settle down this matter with bilateral talk. Conceivably it wasn’t feasible and also interdicting the accomplishment of Pakistani objective to internationalize Kashmir Dispute. In response Indians unpredictably started massive military assault over small number of Pakistani troops with the cooperation of Indian Air Force, even utilizing Miraj 2000 it is even capable for the delivery of nuclear weapon but Indians tried to kept all its war efforts in certain limits and remained in the specific limits lay down by LoC. It was difficult to sustain for involved Pakistani troops in front of Indians IAF without air cover by PAF. It appeared to me as that it was the military leadership who didn’t calculate this aspect that what they will do if Indians start massive response to this. In any worse case scenario when it will remain no more secret then how they will recuperate the lost trust of their fellows for a reciprocal response. Because then the few number of people will not be able to fight war, it will be a war between two nations. Anyhow it was necessary to bring it to an end, this end was coming but nation was oblivious over this issue.
I will say in implicit manner that high official of other Pakistani forces also remained unacquainted over Kargil Operation till the time it was exposed by other means. When Kargil War started then the situation was that nobody was onboard even at higher level and even when its end was near the situation was not very different. A democratic Prime Minister was ruling over Pakistan but the situation was that his Information Minister Syed Mushaid Husain has no information even before a crucial meeting with at that time President of USA Mr. Bill Clinton on July 4, 1999.
Is the Nawaz Sharif not to be blamed equally for it?. He went to America and after a meeting with Clinton he was agreed upon the withdrawal of Pakistani forces from Kargil sector. While a country’s nation and its forces have the right perception that with the presence of nuclear weapons it our inalienable right to negotiate every issue on equal basis. What sort of equality it was? Indians even wasn’t there nor were they ready to participate. Nawaz ordered his forces to evict the Kargil sector in such a hurry that he couldn’t arrange a fair arrangement of cease fire. It cause a severe sense of defeat among forces while they were ready to fight till their last breath and Pakistani nation was also disappointed over this political defeat.
But still this issue is controversial none of Pakistani ruler tried to find out that what has happened? What sort of hurry was there for withdrawal of Pakistani forces and why a national plan was missing and only individual was in process according their own desire?.
There is a need to establish such a system that whenever there is meeting between top Pakistani officials it should be formulated in written order. It should be available as imperial evidence in any future Kargil like issue’s investigation. Because they are reasonable to reply the nation and also they are not gather to discuss any personal issues these will be related to nation. They should not feel any shame for the establishment of this system. For it still no one is ready to accept his fault while the both key players are still ready to serve the nation once again.
The writer is associated with the Strategic & Nuclear studies department of the NDU, Islamabad. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org