Springfield, Virginia. May 9 2015. “The United States Administration should persuade both India and Pakistan to settle the Kashmir conflict through tripartite and purposeful dialogue.” This was stated by the former Prime Minister of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader, Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry, while addressing a public gathering in Washington, D.C. He emphasized that Kashmir is the flash point between the two nuclear countries of India and Pakistan which deserves the attention of the world powers.
Washington, D.C. April 11, 2015. “Kashmir is the longest running dispute on the agenda of the United Nations Security Council. The cause of the people of Jammu & Kashmir is sacred and the people of Azad Kashmir and Pakistan will never let the people of Kashmir down,” this was stated by Sardar Qayyum Niazi, former minister of Azad Kashmir and the chief guest of the occasion that was attended by friends of Kashmir. Mr. Niazi said that India and Pakistan must accept the solution of the dispute according to the wishes and aspirations of the people of Kashmir. He quoted Daniel S. Markey of Council of Foreign Relatiosn who said “There is little doubt that normalized relations between India and Pakistan, including a regionally acceptable settlement on Kashmir, would offer tremendous benefits to the United States.”
“All of us remain concerned that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir should be solved through peaceful negotiations and should be willing to lend all the strength we have to the resolution of this matter.” President Nelson Mandela at the NAM Summit – September 2, 1998
In matters of international conflict resolution, that can only imply the involvement of a third party mediator or facilitator. If Ashok and Ahmad can’t put Humpty Dumpty back together because they can’t agree on where the pieces go, then Sam, a specialist in eggshell reconstruction, should be called upon in order for differences to be resolved. Most importantly, without a third party’s impartial diligence in pursuing a settlement, breakdowns in lines of communication or other disputes that may arise will inevitably create barriers to resolution, and the process will fail. The side in the dispute which offers initiatives will always be seen as weak when both are out rattling their sabres; hence no progress can be made.
“Let us remember here that the future of Jammu and Kashmir is not something that the governments of India and Pakistan can decide without involving the Kashmiri people. How this diverse people’s representatives should be identified, and then associated with the process toward a possible settlement, are crucial if difficult questions, but every human and democratic principle demands this association.” Professor Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, July 24, 2003.
Washington, D.C. December 16, 2104. These cowardly contemptible murders of 141 people, including 132 children, mostly under 16, in Peshawar, Pakistan are condemnable no matter what the motivation of the terrorists. This massacres is unmitigated evil, an earmark of barbarism contemptuous of civilization. We must understand that terrorism is never acceptable no matter how seemingly urgent the political objective or how evil the opposition. Terrorism at anytime, any place, and by anyone can never be and must not be tolerated in a civilized society. Terrorism invariably corrupts the culprits and the common human rights of mankind.
Oh let the sun beat down upon my face, stars to fill my dream / I am a traveler of both time and space, to be where I have been / To sit with elders of the gentle race, this world has seldom seen / They talk of days for which they sit and wait and all will be revealed…. –lyrics by Jimmy Page from the song Kashmir, performed by Led Zeppelin
Why, after 67 years of dispute, is the question of Kashmir, land of the “gentle race,” still lurking in the shadows of international relations, still unresolved, despite its seemingly relative unimportance to global interests in matters of resources and international trade?