Here is what our media will not tell us about the situation in Pakistan.
In the flurry of war/no-war, what many forget is that wars now are fought not just by men wearing boots carrying guns, or airforce/naval engagement, but even more so by economic means and weapons.
The current status of the Indo-Pak engagement needs to be seen from that point of view.
The fake Indian currency (FICN) business is almost totally wiped out.
The meat laundries have been check-mated.
The Pak Rupee is at an all-time low and sinking further.
Right now, in Pakistan there’s a shortage of all forms of foreign & domestic transport.
The airspace closure over Pakistan impacts not just international East-West traffic, which routes via UAE options, but more so Pakistan’s own domestic and international air travel, pax & cargo that comes to a halt as also the income from flights over Pak Airspace.
Domestic movements by train are severely impaired because Pakistan Railways, what’s left of it, depends almost totally on diesel for locomotives.
Road transport is much costlier and the Afghan trade which subsidised a lot of their livelihoods, has moved to via Iran or over Central Asia.
Another point to note is that Karachi is the only effective seaport for Pakistan, and oil imports, especially aviation fuel and clean products, have come to a grinding halt as ships and shipping companies stay away, with huge insurance mark-ups.
Port of Karachi is almost blocked. Tankers are not reaching with oil.
Fuel for their air force is down to 4 days.
People are upset and trade is almost halted. Prices have shot up. Pressure from their own people on their own government is huge. Pakistani airports & seaports are shut whilst not a single Indian airport or seaport is even impacted.
Instead of #SayNoToWar, this is the time for India to keep rattling sabres.
Pakistan is totally SHUT DOWN.
It’s economy is FROZEN.
This then is the time to continue applying economic & diplomatic pressure backed up by not just IAF, but also Indian Navy, whose presence in the Arabian Sea is formidable, to say the least, and whose ports on both coasts as well as Andamans are simply not affected.
So it is up to the Pakistani people to appeal to their own elected representatives as well as their military to stop these terrorist movements from Pakistani soil.
Or, as Bhutto famously said, be prepared to eat grass.
Dawn: PAKISTAN should be a welfare state. With millions of people straddling the poverty line, there is no other way forward. Those who believe the market will offer a solution are driven by ideology, blind fundamentalists in the same category as religious fundamentalists.