In a recent interview with Al-Jazeera, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan made some controversial statements regarding the use of nuclear weapons against India.
First, Khan started off by saying he was anti-war—a “pacifist.” He then developed his stance, stating that “when two nuclear-armed countries fight, if they fight a conventional war, there is every possibility that it is going to end up into nuclear war.” However, this scenario, as Khan described, is “the unthinkable.”
Khan went on to say:
“If say Pakistan, God forbid, we are fighting a conventional war, we are losing, and if a country is stuck between the choice; either you surrender or you fight ‘til death for your freedom, I know Pakistanis will fight to death for their freedom.
So when a nuclear-armed country fights to the end, to the death, it has consequences.”
Granted, Khan spoke to RT not long after in an attempt to provide a disclaimer to these eye-opening statements. But for all intents and purposes, the nuclear elephant in the room is no longer hiding.
Throughout the last week, the top global news story was the recent drone attack on a major Saudi Aramco facility, which was unanimously pinned on Iran. The whole world appears to be bracing for a regional confrontation between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Iran, and what would inevitably be another disastrous war in which the U.S. finds itself intervening heavily on the side of Riyadh, if it doesn’t take the lead and strike Iran directly itself.
Notwithstanding the seriousness of the potential for U.S.-Iran relations to further spiral into the abyss, no one is talking about the fact that a nuclear-armed state just threatened another nuclear armed-state with nuclear war. How can this be? And how seriously should we take this threat?
“I take Khan’s statement to be almost truism,” Professor Noam Chomsky told the Mind Unleashed via email.
“Do you know of a country that wouldn’t use whatever weapons it has if it were on the verge of destruction by a bitter enemy? The crimes in this case are India’s. What Modi is doing in Kashmir, with strong public support, is truly criminal. Not to speak of his tearing to shreds what remains of Indian democracy.”
Unsurprisingly, no major western news network appears to see the issue in the same way that Chomsky aptly phrased in a one paragraph email, with very few exceptions.
There has been no statement from the NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg that he is concerned about rising tensions. There have been no accusations that Pakistan or India are destabilizing the region.
We also must bear in mind that when it comes to Kashmir, Pakistan and India have fought two major wars already. Since the partition, the two nations have gone to war three times—and has almost launched a fourth. History shows us that the potential for a war between two countries who have already fought three wars—and who maintain deep, mutual points of differences—seems to be more than hyperbolic.