Pulwama, a stunningly beautiful south Kashmir town, located 35 miles south of Srinagar on Sri-Jammu Highway. A suicide attack on an Indian Paramilitary convoy here this Valentine’s Day could have become the Arch Duke Ferdinand moment of the two nuclear armed nations of South Asia, India and Pakistan. It could have taken, the two armed to the teeth neighbors, into a nuclear Armageddon. What ensued after this vicious attack was unprecedented, it sent shock waves across India, the Indian media known for their jingoism , whipped up hyper nationalism , blatantly asking for a revenge, audaciously calling to “punish Pakistan” , “Wipe it off the face of earth” , “Pakistan ko diya jaye ga Qarara Jawab (we will give Pakistan a befitting reply )” ,”Seema main paya jata hai karra akrosh ( The Indian public is livid , it’s very angry )”.
One immediately had a sense that the hawks sitting at the helm of affairs in Delhi will surely commit a strategic blunder this time, they will try to grasp this moment of public anger against Pakistan to score an upper hand in the upcoming elections. This is exactly what happened, it baffled every sane person how the Indian TV anchors and defense analysts even Bollywood celebrities’ fueled public anger in favor of a supposedly decisive war against Pakistan. The most ludicrous was the veterans of higher ranks, the ex-generals of the Indian army, and marshals of the air force, In a bizarre fashion of warmongering these veterans joined body armor & uniform-clad Tv anchors in the studios, with screens running slides of maps of Pakistan, India and Azad Kashmir (What they call PoK ), fervently discussing the options Indian Army and Vayoo Sena (Indian Air Force ) had “to teach Pakistan a lesson “ . Hilariously playing animations of Indian artillery pounding Azad Kashmir and bringing Pakistan to its knees. One couldn’t help thinking if these mentally unstable guys had commanded corps, divisions, Brigades of Indian Army and Air Force or they were some ordinary vendors at fish markets in Calcutta or Chennai. It really compelled people from all spectrum of life to think how could India having some of the most professional people in every section of their society, have such insane people at positions that demand complete responsibility and composure. People like General GD Bakshi a renowned hate monger against Pakistan and General Raj Kadyan personified imbecility, stupidity
And then the stupidity happened, the delusional Indian Government backed by jingoistic, war-mongering media committed the strategic blunder that will bring embarrassment & shame for them not only in South Asia but in every corner of the world. A dozen of Indian air force Mirage 2000s, a fourth generation supersonic, French made aircrafts intruded into Pakistani air space in the wee hours of 26th Feb, and bombed some uninhibited place in Balakot area of KPK, Sparking wild celebration in Indian News Studios and streets. Once again Indian media in a complete display of senselessness started claims of massive destruction at Balakot and elimination of more than 300 terrorists without ascertaining the facts and figures on the ground. Less than 24 hours later the PAF responded in an emphatic manner, it targeted six key military positions in Indian held Kashmir, bombed carefully next to them just to prove the strength and the capability of its air power , this audacious retaliatory response by PAF sent jitters in the IAF ranks and cadres . In Panic, the western command of Indian Air force took some of the worst decisions in Indo Pak Aviation history , it scrambled the weary , 3rd generation MiG 21s, An outdated Russian made aircraft nicknamed “Flying Coffin “ in aviation circles to counter the dynamic JF 17s of PAF . And then came the moment that will haunt the Indians for decades, Wing commander Abhinadan, an Ace Indian MiG 21 pilot with the blood-stained face, flanked by Pakistani Army personnel and chased by an angry mob started popping up on Tv and Mobile screens across Pakistan. The delusion of emerging super power had bitten the dust, the pride hath fallen. The Pakistani Air force had shot down one MiG 21 and a Sukhoi of IAF capturing a pilot of wing commander rank. It was reminiscent of Kargil war when the same MiG 21 was shot down by Pak army air defense battalions in the mountains of Karakorum and Flt. Lt. Nachikita was arrested in the very same fashion.
The miscalculation by the hawks at New Delhi had cost the hubris of BJP led Hindutva leadership a wound that will take time to heal. As expected the warmongering Indian media started playing tickers that an IAF MiG 21 has shot down a Pakistani air force ace fighter Aircraft, the Lockheed Martin F-16, nothing could be more ridiculous than this, getting an F16 chased and shot by a MiG 21 is same as a Suzuki Mehran chasing and destroying a Mercedes of latest model . A famous Indian Tv anchor and self-proclaimed Defense analyst Rahul Kanwal made a worldwide mockery of himself when he displayed the wreckage of the same Mig21 of IAF that was shot in Azad Kashmir as the wreckage of PAF F16, which was very aptly corrected by an aviation expert right at that moment, leaving Rahul kanwal totally embarrassed and ashamed (God Bless you kanwal). Adding insult to injury, the Indian Defense ministry denied 300 killings of terrorists in Balakot as claimed by the Indian media.
This belief of India that it is an emerging Super power and that it can act as a policeman in south Asia, that it can act as Israel acts in Middle east, it can sneak into Pakistan and “teach us a lesson “as Israel does in Lebanon, it can intimidate Nepal through its economic leverage as Israel does to Gazans through blockades, it can bully Sri Lanka as Israel does to Syrians, is a delusion indeed. This false belief has cost India dearly in the latest escalation with Pakistan and it can cost it grossly in future if she doesn’t replace knee jerkiness with rationality and composure. And for the Indian war mongering media, the Pakistani Social media memes (which Pakistani youth is getting renowned for across the globe) are enough to kill your hubris.