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  1. #51
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    Pakistan shoots down 2 Indian aircraft inside its airspace – military


    "Pakistan shot down two Indian Air Force aircraft after they crossed into its airspace, the army said. One aircraft fell on the Pakistani-controlled area, and two pilots were arrested on the ground.

    The Pakistani Air Force downed “two Indian aircrafts inside Pakistani airspace” after they crossed the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir, the army’s spokesperson, Major General Asif Ghafoor, tweeted.

    Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor @OfficialDGISPR

    In response to PAF strikes this morning as released by MoFA, IAF crossed LOC. PAF shot down two Indian aircrafts inside Pakistani airspace. One of the aircraft fell inside AJ&K while other fell inside IOK. One Indian pilot arrested by troops on ground while two in the area.

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    “One Indian pilot arrested by troops on ground while two in the area,” he wrote.

    According to the spokesperson, one aircraft fell inside the Pakistani-controlled part of Kashmir, while the other went down inside the territory controlled by India.

    Ghafoor later stated in a press briefing that two pilots were “recovered and provided all necessary medical treatment.”

    A video, released by Radio Pakistan, shows what appears to be an arrested pilot blindfolded and with his hands tied behind his back.

    Pakistan also claimed it conducted airstrikes into Indian-held Kashmir.
    At the same time, media had reported on an Indian Mi-17 military helicopter crashing inside the Indian-controlled area of Kashmir. It is not clear if it was one of the aircraft downed by Pakistan.

    Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated dramatically on Wednesday with reports of cross-border shelling along the Line of Control in Kashmir. Pakistani officials said that at least four civilians were killed from mortar fire. The Indian Army said that five of its soldiers were wounded during the shelling from Pakistan."


    https://www.rt.com/news/452520-india-pakistan-aircraft-shot-down/

    One can only hope this does not escalate further.
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    utilising the star posters evasive posts as standard:



    and



    I refer you back to my previous posts on this topic .................................................. .................................................. .................................................. .................................................. .................................................. .......................

    (DOS Error Message: Too many to list, BULLSHIT overflow warning, re-booting)
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    Fixed the DOS error for you

  3. #53
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    Thanks, I nearly let aThai technician have a go.

  4. #54
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    A link to a video of the Indian pilot shot down yesterday talking to his captors. Apparently enjoying Pakistani tea.

    The coroner's report will be provided by 'arry shortly.

    https://twitter.com/JeremyMcLellan/status/1100740945606266880



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    Somebody tell the Ents no twigs, leaves, bows or trunks were hurt in the bombings.


  6. #56
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    If you hear this on the wind run for your lives.


  7. #57
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    Do not barter away national security interests


    "There has been an avalanche of reports in the international media quoting western diplomats and security officials to the effect that India’s “intelligence-led… non-military preemptive strike” on a big terrorist camp in Pakistan on February 26 was all baloney. Apparently, these reports say, there was so such terrorist camp in existence in Balakot.

    Incredibly enough, no one on the government cares to set the record straight. The Foreign Secretary had claimed earlier that the strike killed “a very large number of Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists, trainers, senior commanders, and groups of jihadis who were being trained for Fidayeen action were eliminated.”

    But surprisingly, the day after the FS spoke, Air Vice Marshal R.G.K. Kapoor said it was “premature” to provide details about casualties. He would only say that the Indian armed forces had “fairly credible evidence” of the damage inflicted on the camp by the air strikes.

    It is important for the government to clarify, because what happened was a defining moment in India-Pakistan relations and in India’s fight against terrorism. The nation has a right to know. No doubt, crossing another country’s borders and attacking its territory is a major escalation. What is the rationale behind such escalation?

    Prime Minister Modi says he’s given a “free hand” to the armed forces. Are we to assume that the IAF suo moto acted on February 26? That is inconceivable.
    This calls for deep introspection: What is it that the government achieved through the 60-odd hours between the early hours of Tuesday and the evening of Thursday? There is no shred of evidence that Pakistani side is cowed down in fear.

    On the contrary, Pakistan insists that it will retaliate against any act of Indian aggression. Prime Minister Imran Khan disclosed in the National Assembly in Islamabad yesterday that in the night of Wednesday-Thursday, Pakistani military was in a state of readiness to fire missiles into India.

    Some of our self0styled experts say we’ve “sent a message” to Pakistan that we’ll hit them hard if terrorism continued. How can they be so sure? The Pakistani retaliation with an attack on India the very next day — an act of war by targeting our military installations — discredits their thesis.

    The most unfortunate part is that after precipitating the crisis situation on Tuesday, the government ducked and took help from Saudi Arabia and the UAE to “de-escalate” the situation.

    Make no mistake, this fateful move has grave implications. The whole world knows that these two petrodollar states are the principal sponsors of terrorist groups who destroyed Syria.

    Importantly, how can we possibly overlook that Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and other terrorist organisations in Pakistan have received direct support from these Arab countries, especially Saudi Arabia? There is plentiful evidence of it.

    An action request cable archived by Wikileaks, documenting the illicit finance activities in Afghanistan and Pakistan, stated that “it has been an ongoing challenge to persuade Saudi officials to treat terrorist financing emanating from Saudi Arabia as a strategic priority.” The cable continues, “Still, donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.” It describes Saudi Arabia as “a critical financial support base” for Al-Qaeda, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and other terrorist groups.”


    By the estimation of the US state department, LeT and JeM are all but synonymous! As far back as in 1993, the LeT became part of the United Jihad Council, an umbrella group for militant Islamists operating in J&K, and in doing so, it formed a direct alliance with the JeM (which claimed credit for the Pulwama attack recently.)

    In fact, another Wikileaks cable confirmed that Saudi Arabia and the UAE have been funnelling money not just to LeT but to JeM directly. It says:

    “Locals believed that charitable activities being carried out by Deobandi and Ahl-e-Hadith organizations, including Jamaat-ud-Dawa, the Al-Khidmat Foundation, and Jaish-e-Mohammed were further strengthening reliance on extremist groups and minimizing the importance of traditionally moderate Sufi religious leaders in these communities. Government and non-governmental sources claimed that financial support estimated at nearly 100 million USD annually was making its way to Deobandi and Ahl-e-Hadith clerics in the region from ‘missionary’ and ‘Islamic charitable’ organizations in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates ostensibly with the direct support of those governments.”

    Saudi Arabia has quite openly held out assurances to Pakistan that it need not go after JeM directly.

    Indeed, the most dangerous part of the gambit by the Modi government to let in Saudi Arabia and the UAE into its matrix over Pakistan and Kashmir is that this policy shift is completely of sync with the wider geopolitical struggle unfolding in the region.

    Quite obviously, Saudi Arabia wants to win Pakistan over in a tug-of-war game with Iran and is doling out to Islamabad generous financial help and a $10 billion investment plan to to build an oil refinery in the Gwadar port project (which actually puts a major Saudi project on Iran’s border.) The Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s (MBS) recent visit to Pakistan has essentially cemented Pakistan’s inclusion in anti-Iran Arab NATO.

    Against this backdrop, how could the Indian policymakers blithely overlook the far-reaching, dangerous implications of consorting with Saudi Arabia and the UAE as partners in its fight against terrorism in J&K fomented by Pakistan?

    The most intriguing part is the newfound bonhomie between the Indian elite and the sheikhs. Put differently, you don’t take help from the wolf to guard the sheep, right? What explains the Faustian deal to allow them to enter the sanctum sanctorum of India’s foreign policy — Kashmir and the matrix of India-Pakistan relations?

    Beware of the lure of green money. The Saudis and Emiratis are great operators in Washington, DC. Their fierce lobbying and charm offensives are legion. If they could manipulate the American political class so brilliantly, our oligarchy must be chicken feed. "

    https://indianpunchline.com/do-not-b...ity-interests/

  8. #58
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    US kept ‘cool’ during India-Pak crisis. This is why





    (Indian soldiers patrol along the fence at the India-Pakistan border)

    "With the India-Pakistan standoff somewhat waning, the time is ripe to put under the scanner the stance taken by the Trump administration through the crisis situation developing since the February 14 terrorist attack in Pulwama.

    On the face of it, Washington was strongly supportive of India. The US national security advisor John Bolton reportedly rushed to contact his Indian counterpart Ajit Doval twice in the immediate aftermath of the Pulwama attack. The US also made its oft-repeated call to Pakistan to shut down terrorist camps.

    But a highlight was that Bolton publicly upheld India’s right to “self-defence” following Pulwama. This is a standard US formulation that Washington routinely reserves for its ally Israel in anticipation of the inevitable Israeli military reaction to any provocation by the Palestinians or Hezbollah — and, more recently, in the situation surrounding the Syrian conflict.

    However, Bolton’s exuberance remains an enigma. Bolton has been accused of being a maverick, an inveterate hawk and as Israel’s sidekick. But he’s an intelligent man. Didn’t he know that Israel exercises its “right to self-defence” selectively against hapless weak targets, whereas India’s adversary is a nuclear weapon state with proven capability to retaliate?

    Did Bolton have any inkling that an Indian escalation was in the making days or weeks ahead? Or, did he make that intriguing remark by way of winking at India and prodding it to go for some sort of action against Pakistan?

    Importantly, did he have Israeli inputs? After all, Bolton is wired into the Israeli political establishment — and vice versa. He secured his White House job with Israeli help and he’s mindful of that at all times.

    This is important because the Indian security establishment and ruling elite too has close links with Israel. The well-known Middle East analyst and author Robert Fisk, who is immensely experienced in Islamist insurgency, wrote recently that the Indian security operations in J&K lately bear striking similarity to the methods practised by the Israeli forces in Gaza and the West Bank to bludgeon the Palestinians into abject submission. He estimated that India is virtually copying Israeli methods to quell mass unrest.

    At any rate, Bolton’s reaction was exceptional insofar as traditionally, US tried to tamp down tensions whenever a crisis situation arose and even used to depute officials from Washington to travel to Delhi to counsel restraint. This time around, however, no US envoy flew down to Delhi — not even when tensions spiked and a flashpoint was reached last week.

    Of course, US knows Pakistan cared two hoots for any exhortations /demands by Washington in the past to clamp down on terrorist groups operating from its soil and there is no likelihood of Pakistan listening today. If anything, today the US’ capacity to leverage Pakistan is at an all-time low.

    Yet, Washington made loud noises in that direction at various levels, including by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. What did the US hope to achieve? One possibility is that it suited Washington if India increased its pressure on Pakistan at a juncture when the US-Taliban negotiations are at a critical stage and Islamabad’s cooperation becomes vital.
    On the other hand, it is known now that the US CENTCOM chief Gen. Joseph Votel was in touch with the Pakistani army chief Gen. Qamar Bajwa. (Other western military leaders also contacted Bajwa.) In sum, Washington kept a sharp eye on the India-Pakistan tensions and probably assessed that the chance of tensions cascading uncontrollably was remote.
    In fact, President Trump was the first person to give the good news that the tensions were coming under check when he made a suo moto statement to that effect right at his famous press conference in Hanoi on February 28. Trump said, according to the White House transcript:

    “We have, I think, reasonably attractive news from Pakistan and India. They’ve been going at it, and we’ve been involved in trying to have them stop. And we have some reasonably decent news. I think, hopefully, that’s going to be coming to an end. It’s been going on for a long time — decades and decades. There’s a lot of dislike, unfortunately. So we’ve been in the middle, trying to help them both out and see if we can get some organization and some peace. And I think, probably, that’s going to be happening.”

    It was extraordinary that Trump began the press conference with the above “breaking news”. In all likelihood, he wanted to distract attention from the dismal failure of his summit meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un by flagging a success story and, typically, to claim personal credit for it.

    Of course, his remarks must have caused some disquiet in Delhi — namely,
    by virtually boasting about US mediation (“we’ve been in the middle, trying to help them both out”);

    1. by eschewing any of the previous criticism of Pakistan and on the contrary adopting a strictly neutral position without attributing blame for tensions to either Delhi or Islamabad; and,
    2. by making India (and Pakistan) look small and lacking in maturity (“They’ve been going at it, and we’ve been involved in trying to have them stop.”)

    Having said that, the most important point made by Trump was that the present tensions went back in time to a distant past (“It’s been going on for a long time — decades and decades.”) This reference is extremely worrisome — especially, since Trump also touched on US mediation. True, Trump avoided using the “K” word outright but he all but implied that the present tensions are to be traced to the unresolved 7-decade old Kashmir problem.

    In retrospect, did the US really play an effective mediatory role in easing the tensions last week? It is hard to say because there was no overt diplomacy on its part (which is, by the way, very uncharacteristic of American diplomacy in such situations when an opportunity presents itself to project the US as the indispensable world leader.)

    One thing is for sure. Increasingly, through thick fog that still surrounds the dramatic happenings last week, it seems that there was something highly contrived about the India-Pakistan tensions. A well-informed correspondent of the Indian Express has quoted “top government sources” admitting that: The limitations of technical intelligence and lack of ground intelligence at this point make any assessment of terrorists killed in the attack on Balakot last Tuesday “purely speculative”


    1. The IAF was keen on crossing the LoC to bomb the target last Tuesday, but it was decided that it should only fire the PGM “from Indian side of LoC” and, therefore, no IAF aircraft crossed the LoC and as per radar data reviewed by the IAF, the closest Pakistani aircraft was at a distance of about 120 km.

    Simply put, while the US tried to milk propaganda mileage out of the crisis, the highly sophisticated American spy satellites in place over the subcontinent would have given the White House an accurate account of what really was happening on the ground — a brawl between two noisy street dogs, as it were, who simply needed to be separated.

    The crux of the matter is that the US patently “outsourced” the denouement to this street brawl to its allies Saudi Arabia and the UAE. It could only have been Bolton’s brainwave (at Israeli suggestion) to bring in the sheikhs who are the US’ key allies in his pet project to encircle and destroy Iran.

    The US calculation is that with the Saudi and Emirati crown princes having virtually cemented Pakistan’s induction into the “Arab NATO” in the recent months, a golden opportunity was at hand to co-opt India as well.

    In the final analysis, if Delhi can be progressively weaned away from its relationship with Tehran, that will make the encirclement of Iran complete and Bolton’s Iran project takes a great leap forward."

    https://indianpunchline.com/us-kept-...s-this-is-why/

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    Watch out on the slopes, the Chinese are a coming.













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