As of this hour (about 5 PM EDT) the bombings in Mumbai (a.k.a. Bombay) India have killed at least 160 people (BBC), and they were most likely committed by Islamic terrorists from Kashmir. Yours truly has commented repeatedly on Communist China's support for America's enemies in the War on Terror. However, since India was the target, I thought I should do more than just link back to old posts.
Reports are already out, citing unnamed American sources, that the terrorists probably responsible for this attack were either Lashkar-e-Tayyiba and/or Jaish-e-Mohammed (CNN), though admittedly that view is not universal (London Times). Both are terrorist groups that focus on kicking India out of Kashmir - a Muslim-majority region currently divided by force between India and Pakistan. Most reports will mention how these two groups have ties to al Qaeda. What they may leave out is that both were also supported for years by Pakistan - an ally of Communist China for over half a century (ninth, sixth, and seventh items).
This gives the democratic world an excellent opportunity to correct some mistakes we are making even now in South Asia.
What most Americans know about India is that it is the largest democracy on Earth, and that it's the beneficiary of "outsourcing," as is Communist China. However, while Communist China is taking American jobs as part of its anti-American geopolitical goals, India has become attractive to employers for moving away from decades of crippling socialist economic policies. More importantly, India has long been battling both Islamic terrorists and Chinese Communists for years.
Pakistan is another story. The current leader, General Pervez Musharraf, took power in a coup in October 1999. His ostensible reason was to fight corruption in Pakistani politics. The real reasons had more to do with the democratically elected Pakistani Prime Minister - Nawaz Sharif - ordering an end to a disastrous invasion of the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir (BBC) and attempting to fire the general (BBC). In fact, Musharraf was nearly before other generals took his side against the PM.
There are some who would insist this shouldn't matter - the War on Terror is more important. Unfortunately, dictators tend to prefer terrorists to the United States, and Musharraf - contrary to popular belief - is no exception.
In 2002, Musharraf allowed parliamentary elections, but voters refused to give a majority to any of the three major political forces - Musharraf, the democrats, and the pro-terrorist radicals. Musharraf had a choice to make, and he chose to ally with the terrorists to freeze out the democrats. As for the Taliban and al Qaeda, Musharraf's "support" for America in its conflict with both is, at best, decidely mixed (seventh item). Meanwhile, India was supporting anti-Taliban forces in Afghanistan long before we were. For that, it has now suffered two major terrorist attacks in less than five years (CNN).
There was a time when the U.S. may have needed Pakistan in the battle against the Taliban, but even then, the Pakistani dictatorship was an ally in name only. Now, with an embatttled but friendly government in Afghanistan - elected by its people - we need Pakistan far less. India, however, is not only a bulwark against terrorism, it may also be the only power outside of the United States that Communist China genuinely fears.
It is time the U.S. make clear where we stand - with India. The first step is for Congress to stop fussing around and pass the U.S.-India nuclear agreement. The second step is to warn Pakistan that it must choose between us and the terrorists. Furthermore, should Pakistan choose the terrorists (as is likely) we must make clear India is our friend and ally against both Pakistan and Communist China. It will take at least this much (but likely much more, like a mutual defense treaty), to convince the Pakistanis and the Communists to keep the terrorists in check. In any event, the United States and India must stand together against these regimes until the peoples and Pakistan and China can take their respective countries back.
President Bush said it himself: "You are with us, or you are with the terrorists." Communist China and Pakistan have been the latter, while pretending to be the former. The democratic world can no longer fall for this charade. America and India will never be secure until China and Pakistan are free.