A late 2008 diplomatic cable from the Islamabad embassy of the US has shed new light on the thinking inside the Pakistani establishment about Kashmir, Balochistan and the bombing of Indian embassy in Kabul in the same year.
According to the cable, which described a high-level meeting between the US Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia Richard Boucher and Pakistani National Security Advisor Mahmood Durrani, Pakistanis suspected some of the terrorists they were in touch with for the bombing of Indian embassy.
Durrani also went on to acknowledge India’s frequent charge that the Pakistani army helped militants sneak into the Indian side of Kashmir by providing cover by shelling. According to him, such activities had ceased during the time of Musharraf.
“Referring to the attack on the Indian Embassy in Kabul, Durrani told that Pakistan “Inter-Services Intelligence didn’t do it.” He admitted that “we have some contacts with bad guys and perhaps one of them did it,” but denied any direct responsibility,” said Anne Patterson, the US ambassador to Pakistan.
Durrani also told Boucher that the Indians complained a lot of about some 39 incursions into Indian territory by the Army during the year, during one of his recent meetings with Indian officials. Such incursions, accompanied by firing, are seen as “launch operations” meant to help terrorists from the Pakistani side of Kashmir to cross into the Indian side and vice versa.
“The Indian Foreign Secretary told Durrani bluntly, said Durrani, that the Indian view was that after Musharraf lost control, the Pakistani Army went back to its old ways. Durrani pointed out that Musharraf had blocked “launch efforts” in Kashmir but said that perhaps one specific battalion on the border was a source of trouble,” Patterson wrote, quoting Durrani.
The cable was part of the tranche of US embassy communications released why whistle-blower site Wiki-leaks.
The cable also indicated a previously unanticipated openness from Durrani about India’s claim that it was not fomenting terror in Pakistani state of Balochistan, returning the favor for Kashmir.