A friend says she is unpacking for her family’s trip to India, which was scheduled in a few weeks’ time. They were booked to begin their tour at the Taj Mahal Hotel. “Know of any safe ashrams?” she asks.
I replied that I’d been reading in vain for some information on just who the attackers are.
Apparently, she said, Kashmiri rebels. “When I think of all the troubles and wars throughout the world that were created by the British as a result of carving up territories more than a hundred years ago – Iraq, Palestine, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, to name a few – I am doubly ashamed because the U.S. continues to make matters worse. Empires! The devil’s very own work!”
My friend is British, now living in the U.S., and serving as conscience to both. She is the friend who devotes her time to wide reading and emailing to her list the most interesting and timely stories she finds, thus saving us much time and bringing important stories to our attention. It is a real service.
In 1857, after the Indian Rebellion, Kashmir sided with the British and soon came under the British Crown. At the end of British rule in 1947 and in the subsequent partition of the country in two parts, Pakistan and India, Kashmir became “a disputed territory,” administered by three countries: India, Pakistan, and China. That is, not for 152 years has the country been its own state, living by its own rules and in its own name.
I suppose the next few days will answer my question.