The Indian factor is the one big unknown is all this turmoil, one that could play a decisive role in making a bad situation worse. Pakistan and India have been in a state of undeclared war since 1947, and the rise of Hindu ultra-nationalism has exacerbated tensions with Muslims, who have been the targets of violence by Hindu extremists. Tensions are high right now due to the expected court decision over who owns the land on which the Ayodhya mosque once sat: Muslims want to rebuild the 16th century structure, while extremist Hindus are opposed. The issue could spark yet another round of ethno-religious rioting in India, provoke more terrorist attacks in the region, and ultimately lead to a violent clash with Pakistan over one of many flashpoints on the long Indo-Pakistani border.
The very dangerous course the Obama is currently pursuing could easily end in the world’s first nuclear exchange: Indian nukes are aimed straight at Islamabad, just as Pakistan’s nuclear-tipped missiles are pointed at New Delhi.
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