Advancing a Free Society

More Mumbais?

Friday, July 15, 2011

The synchronized attacks in Mumbai, by their targeting and timing, designed both to do the maximum amount of damage and to be iconic in nature, frame the recent assassination of a Karzai brother, the shake-up in American command, announced pullbacks, quite understandable curtailing of U.S. aid to Pakistan, and a general impression by Islamists (assuming they indeed turn out to be the culprits) that a weary and insolvent U.S. is retreating into multilateral irrelevance, resulting in not much deterrence left against radical Islam in that part of the world.

One underappreciated fact of our engagement with Pakistan, well aside from its ambiguous role in Afghanistan, was our awkward obligation to restrain India in the face of occasional Pakistan-based terrorism. If the Mumbai attacks prove (as much as anything is ‘proved’ in the wars against terrorism) to have originated from Pakistan, it is likely that a disengaging U.S. will not be so willing or able to restrain India, which would usher in a new cycle of response/counter-response. India, as a great power, will not long allow Mumbai to become a terrorist training ground.

Continue reading Victor Davis Hanson at National Review Online