The sovereign can no longer say, "You shall think as I do on pain of death;" but he says, "You are free to think differently from me, and to retain your life, your property, and all that you possess; but if such be your determination, you are henceforth an alien among your people."

(Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, 1835)

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Clash in Kashmir

There has been a fatal exchange of fire between India and Pakistan along the de facto border in Kashmir. It is not clear how the firing started - both sides are accusing the other of firing the first shots - but the Pakistani army has stated that one of their soldiers has been killed.

Clearly, this is not a welcome development and will distract attention from the campaign in Afghanistan... or perhaps we've got that the wrong way round? Perhaps Afghanistan has distracted too much attention from other problems in the region, of which Kashmir is one of the longest-lasting and most intractable.

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