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Kargil Was a Big Military Success for Pak: Musharraf
Claiming that his 1999 Kargil operation was a "big success militarily", former President Pervez Musharraf has said that if the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had not visited the US, the Pakistani army would have "conquered" 300 square miles of India.

He defended his action to launch the operation in Kargil in the wake of fresh allegations that he masterminded the intrusions.

Referring to Lt Gen (retired) Shahid Aziz's allegations that he had kept other military commanders in the dark about the operation, Musharraf said, "Telling everyone about it was not necessary at all".

He claimed Aziz had an "imbalanced personality" and had resorted to character assassination by making these accusations.

"We lost the Kargil war, which was a big success militarily, because of (then premier) Nawaz Sharif...If he had not visited the US, we would have conquered 300 square miles of India," Musharraf said in an interview with Express News channel.

Though Pakistan had initially claimed mujahideen were responsible for occupying strategic heights along the Line of Control in early 1999, Musharraf later revealed in his autobiography In The Line Of Fire that regular army troops had participated in the operation.

Aziz, who headed the analysis wing of the ISI during the Kargil conflict, recently revealed that the operation was masterminded by a group of four generals led by Musharraf.

He has said details of the operation were hidden from other military commanders and the exact number of Pakistani casualties was still not known.

But Musharraf claimed the action in Kargil was a "localised" operation and not a major operation.

"Kargil was just one of many sectors under a Major General stationed in Gilgit, (who was) in charge of the area. Exchange of fire was routine there," he claimed.

Musharraf said he would not go so far as to accuse former premier Nawaz Sharif of betrayal but his decision to withdraw from Kargil was a mistake.

"Nawaz lost a political front which we had won militarily," he claimed.

The former dictator, who has been living in self-exile outside Pakistan since 2009, said the "prime consideration" for actions like the Kargil operation is security and secrecy.

"So the army leadership decides who is to be informed and when. As the operation progressed and the proper time arrived, a briefing of the corps commanders was held," he said.

Musharraf said he was "really astonished" that Aziz was writing about the events 10 years later.

Blaming the nation at this juncture, as Aziz had done, seems to be "part of a conspiracy", he claimed.

"It was a tactical action that had a strategic importance in which no more than a few hundred persons were involved, but which engaged thousands on the Indian side and was of tremendous importance," he claimed.

Musharraf justified Pakistani casualties in the conflict, claiming the country lost only 270 men against India’s 1,600 soldiers.
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8/D-101
Feb 02, 2013
09:54 PM

Pakistan army perhaps is the only army in the world who have lost all their battles they have fought.

Mohan, Adipur
7/D-53
Feb 01, 2013
11:27 AM

Mr. Musharaff's game plan is simple. Try and be in the news, and in that he's had part success until now. Can understand his dilemma though. Top man in a large army, top executive in the country, a history maker, just a phone call away from the other history makers around the world to a man without a home or a voice. Not an easy fall for anyone.

And truth be told, with his kind of CV, he really cannot talk about democracy or institution building or any uplifting vision. Victory at Kargil and 300 sq. km. is the best he can offer, and after 10 years of reflection! As Arun said, the leadership in Pakistan and it's state of affairs make ours look good.

Santosh John Samuel, Kochi
6/D-51
Feb 01, 2013
10:50 AM

 They lost half their nation to Bangladesh.  And this bum of a general is gloating over 300 sq miles?  And he thought the Indians were wearing bangles to let him get away with that? 

Nawaz Sharif saved his bacon from getting scorched because the Indians were mobilizing big time to stick it to Musharraf and Pakistan in a big way.  And to do this Sharif had to crawl on his knees all the way from Pakistan to Pres. Clinton, begging him to ask the Indians to call it off.

Mush is in such a denial mode and still so tied up in self-delusions of grandeur, he betrays his utter underlying stupidity which goaded his actions: A mohajir outsider from Delhi, out to impress his Punjabi Pakistani army masters, that he can deliver Kashmir to them, something no previous Punjabi general could ever do.

And he got badly scalded in the process and it could have been worse for him had it not been for Sharif's intervention.  And he still doesn't get it.

Non Fanatic, London
5/D-31
Feb 01, 2013
08:05 AM

Congratulations Mushraff and Pakistan for this stupendous success and wish more success in future.

Maha, NJ
4/D-30
Feb 01, 2013
08:01 AM

Thank God again for Pakistan (and Pakistanis) they make Desh (and us Desis) look so good. So this guy thinks Losing is Winning. He is supposedly a leader of this place, albeit in-exile for now - no wonder the place is a mess. Of course, it is weirder that we in Desh grant him this status too even in-exile and invite him to assortment of leadership summits, rather than treat him as a person no-grata. I guess all of South Asia has a very skewed notion of "leadership".

Or, is this about a great military strategy of "lose the battle to win a war" but I am not sure which "war" would he be hoping to win. For now, if Pakistan can save itself, it will be a miracle.

Arun Maheshwari, Bangalore
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