India and Pakistan: what's going on?
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Last week Mohamed Ajmal Kasab, the only surviving member responsible for the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks which left 166 dead, was sentenced to death. Of Pakistani origin, Kasab represents the new bloody war of an age old animosity between India and Pakistan. India and Pakistan have had a rocky relationship since their spilt back in 1947 following independence from the British Raj, and since then are yet to find long-term peace. The spilt was decided in accordance to majority-religious concentrations in certain areas. The north, founding Pakistan, was predominantly Muslim and the south, India, Hindu. As migration occurred across the countries, bloody riots were triggered, and war, lasting over 25 years, was raged in which hundreds of thousands were killed. The wars were not merely religioon-based; there were also savage territorial disputes over Bangladesh and Kashmir. The latter still continues today, but the animosity has taken a sinister turn. Where before outright war was waged, recent decades have seen a jump towards terrorism. India has suffered many terrorist attacks over the past couple of decades, for which it blames Islamist extremists and unofficially, but not so quietly, suspects Pakistan’s involvement. Both countries have been affected by exacerbated feuds between Muslims and Hindus, however Pakistan much more so. Due to India’s size and powerful economy it can afford to invest in a large military which in turn causes fear and hatred in the much smaller, in both land and economic size, Pakistan. Pakistan invests a large amount of it’s GDP on military, at the expense of its education and health sector. The obsession with defense in Pakistan has led to it give generals too much power. The army is far too powerful and often gets involved in the running of the country and political decisions, weakening the government and undermining democracy. It has also partially helped the Taliban party in Afghanistan in order to undermine India’s allies in Northern Afghanistan which continues, in part, today.
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