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India and Pakistan

Who will strike first?

Dec 20th 2001
From The Economist print edition

THE Bush doctrine apparently encourages countries that are victims of terrorism to defend themselves by going to war. But what if the two countries involved are nuclear powers? India is wrestling with that question after an attack on its Parliament on December 13th in which nine Indians were killed. Many more, including some senior politicians, would have died if the terrorists had not been stopped before they could detonate their bomb. Speaking to Parliament on December 18th, India's home minister, L.K. Advani, blamed Pakistan for “the most audacious” and “the most alarming act of terrorism” in two decades. He did not say what India would do about it. Unlike the United States after September 11th, India appears to have little appetite for war.

For now, it is still betting on diplomacy.…


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