World View: Pakistan Reacts as Indian Forces Cross Border and Strike Militants in Myanmar

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This morning’s key headlines from

  • Indian forces cross Myanmar border to strike at militants
  • Cross-border raid implications for India with Pakistan and China
  • Reports of breakthrough in Greece’s debt crisis

Indian forces cross Myanmar border to strike at militants

Indian army forces
Indian army forces

For the first time, Indian special forces crossed the border into Myanmar (Burma) and conducted a cross-border operation to strike at the terrorist group National Socialist Council of Nagaland – Khaplang (NSCN-K). The Khaplang terrorists are based in Myanmar, but have conducted numerous terrorist attacks in northeast India. The retaliation was triggered by an ambush last week on Thursday (4-Jun) on Indian soil that killed 18 soldiers. The terrorists escaped police and security forces by running back across the border into Myanmar.

Early Tuesday morning, a team of 70 elite Indian special forces commandos crossed the border into Myanmar and struck at the Khaplang. The commandos were air-dropped from helicopters deep inside Myanmar around 3 am, equipped with assault rifles, rocket launchers, grenades and night vision goggles. They walked 5 km to two Khaplang camps and destroyed them, killing 38 militants.

NSCN-K was formed on April 30, 1988, under the leadership of S S Khaplang, as a secessionist movement of the Naga people in India and Myanmar to form a separate nation, the People’s Republic of Nagaland. Mumbai Mirror and Indian Express and South Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP – India)

Cross-border raid implications for India with Pakistan and China

Indian officials are brimming with nationalistic pride today after the cross-border attack in Myanmar (Burma) that killed 38 militants who had ambushed Indian soldiers several days earlier. According to one official:

This message is now very clear to all those who harbored intentions of terror on our country. Unprecedented though, but our Prime Minister has taken a very bold step and given a go ahead for hot pursuit into Myanmar.

Another official said:

The military’s action against insurgents with assistance from the Myanmarese government speaks volumes about India’s resolve to fight terror. This is a lesson and a message to all the terror groups that India will not hesitate in going beyond its geographical borders to eliminate terrorists.

There is some doubt about the truthfulness of this statement, as it is not clear that the Myanmar government was aware of the strike until after it happened. In fact, the initial response from the Myanmar government on the military strike was to say that it took place entirely on Indian soil.

In fact, there have been some reports that Myanmar and officials from China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) have been supporting the NSCN-Khaplang terrorist attacks into India.

Editorial opinion in India seems highly positive. One editorial says that “Prime Minister Narendra Modi has demonstrated that he is willing to bite the bullet and take tough action when it comes to the killing of Indian soldiers.”

But the raid has raised some very sensitive hackles in China and Pakistan.

In 2008, there was a horrific 3-day terror attack on Mumbai by Lashkar-e-Taibi (LeT), a Pakistani terrorist group that was formed in the 1990s by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency to fight India in the disputed regions of Kashmir and Jammu. After the attack, India threatened to send its army to cross the border and attack LeT on Pakistani soil, which might have led to a major war. This was prevented by hard intervention by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Furthermore, as we reported in April, Pakistan has refused to prosecute the mastermind of the Mumbai attack, and he walks free today, infuriating the Indians.

Since then, there have been other terrorist attacks by Pakistan-based terror groups in India. The nationalistic gloating by Indian officials seems to suggest that India would no longer hesitate to cross the border into Pakistan in pursuit of a Pakistani terrorist.

But according to Pakistan’s interior minister:

Pakistan is not like Myanmar… Those having ill designs against Pakistan should listen carefully that our security forces are capable of matching response to any adventurism… Indian leaders should stop day dreaming.

He accused India of conducting terrorist attacks on Pakistan, and said that India’s “nefarious designs” will not succeed in future as in the past. Dawn (Pakistan) and Times of India

Reports of breakthrough in Greece’s debt crisis

There were reports through the day on Wednesday that Germany will be satisfied with just one of the reforms that Greece has previously committed to.

The Europeans are demanding that Greece institute reforms to address various economic issues, including Greece’s bloated public sector, curbing tax evasion and corruption, privatizing public businesses, and adjusting generous pension and minimum wage policies.

According to the reports, only one of these reforms would be required, and the others would be postponed to the future. If true, this compromise would, in effect, “kick the can down the road” once more.

However, there was a late night meeting in Brussels between Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, and the only word following the meeting was that negotiations still had a long way to go.

Greece must make a debt repayment of 1.6 billion euros to the IMF on June 30. It is thought that Greece has no chance of making that payment unless a new bailout program for Greece is approved in the next week. Bloomberg and Reuters

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, India, Myanmar, SS Khaplang, Nagaland, National Socialist Council of Nagaland – Khaplang, NSCN-K, Pakistan, China, People’s Liberation Army, PLA, Narendra Modi, Mumbai, Lashkar-e-Taibi, LeT, Greece, Alexis Tsipras, Germany, Angela Merkel
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