Hawaii’s ballistic missile attack on Saturday turned out to be nothing more than fat-fingered "fake news" by State officials. However, a far more significant threat of nuclear war is growing on the border between India and Pakistan, called the Line of Control (LoC), which continues to be generally ignored by Western media outlets.
Indian Army Chief General Bipin Rawat said Friday his military was ready to call Pakistan’s “nuclear bluff” and carry out aggressive military operations across the border.
"We will call the (nuclear) bluff of Pakistan. If we will have to really confront the Pakistanis, and a task is given to us, we are not going to say we cannot cross the border because they have nuclear weapons.
We will have to call their nuclear bluff," Gen. Rawat warned, responding to a question during a press conference on the “possibility of Pakistan using its nuclear weapons in case the situation along the border deteriorates,” said the Hindustan Times.
On Saturday, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif unleashed a Tweetstorm denouncing Rawat’s comments as “very irresponsible. Amounts to invitation for nuclear encounter. If that is what they desire, they are welcome to test our resolve. The general’s doubt would swiftly be removed, inshallah.”
“The threatening and irresponsible statement by the Indian Army Chief today is representative of a sinister mindset that has taken hold of India. Pakistan has demonstrated deterrence capability,” he tweeted.
“These are not issues to be taken lightly. There must not be any misadventure based on miscalculation. Pakistan is fully capable of defending itself,” he added.
The spokesperson of Pakistan’s Foreign Office Mohammad Faisal also criticised Gen. Rawat’s comments as very “irresponsible.” Further, the Pakistani army said its nuclear weapons have deterred India from launching another full-scale conventional war, as both nuclear superpowers are playing chicken.
Escalating the war of words, Pakistan army spokesman Asif Ghafoor said on state-run television, “should they wish to test our resolve, they may try and see it for themselves. We have a credible nuclear capability, exclusively meant for threat from east. But we believe it’s a weapon of deterrence, not a choice.”
The Line of Control (LoC) refers to a heavily militarized zone in Jammu and Kashmir, in which it splits some of the India-Pakistani border. In 2017 alone, the Indian Army killed 138 Pakistani troops in tactical and retaliatory operations along the LoC. In the same period, 28 Indian soldiers perished. In late December, we reported on an intense battle between Indian and Pakistani forces leaving 4 Indian troops dead, where it was believed that Pakistan was the aggressor.
The Syrian army is determined to drive out the U.S. from any involvement in the country, state television reported on Monday.
Bashar al-Assad’s army objects to any form of U.S. presence in the country and will seek to put an end to it, Reutersreported, citing state media.
The U.S.-led coalition is currently training Syrian militias and plans to establish a new border force together with the Syrian Kurdish-led opposition fighters, consisting of 30,000 personnel over the next several years, according to the coalition.
The move has been criticized by the Syrian foreign ministry, branding it as a “blatant assault” on the country’s sovereignty, according to the state media.
The coalition officials said that it had recently recruited 230 cadets for the new force that it will be tasked with securing areas recently liberated from Islamic State militants, Syria’s northern border with Turkey and the eastern border with Iraq.
Half of the force will be made up of soldiers from the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, which currently controls a quarter of Syria’s territory along the borders with Turkey and Iraq.
Turkey objects to the creation of the border force, seeing the Kurdish militia in Syria as an extension of an active Kurdish insurgent group operating in the country.
A senior Turkish official said the training of the new border force was the reason the U.S. top diplomat stationed in the country was summoned in Ankara last week, Reuters reported. A spokesman for President Tayyip Erdogan said the new force is unacceptable.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday night implied European Jews during the Holocaust chose to undergo “murder and slaughter” over emigration to British-held Palestine, and alleged that the State of Israel’s first prime minister David Ben-Gurion imported Jews from Yemen and Iraq to the country against their will.
The Palestinian leader further asserted that the State of Israel was formed as “a colonial project that has nothing to do with Judaism” to safeguard European interests.
The PA leader delivered a mini-lecture on his understanding of the history of Zionism on Sunday, claiming the Jewish state deliberately stirred trouble in Arab countries in order to forcibly move Middle Eastern Jews into the sparsely populated nascent state.
Abbas, in his address, made no mention of the Jews’ historic presence and periods of sovereignty in the holy land. Israel is the only place where the Jews have ever been sovereign or sought sovereignty.
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