New Delhi: The Vice President of India Shri M. Hamid Ansari has said that the “Golden Jubilee Commemoration of the India-Pakistan War 1965” is a befitting tribute to the gallantry and sacrifice of our soldiers and the resoluteness of our then political leadership in successfully defending India against invasion by a neighbour. It is also an occasion to introspect and to draw lessons from the experience undergone. Delivering inaugural address at the “Tri-Services Seminar to commemorate the Golden Jubilee Commemoration of the India-Pakistan War of 1965” here today, he has said that the genesis of events which led to war lay in Pakistan’s obduracy and the fallacious belief in its establishment that it could use force to alter the geography and political realities of the sub-continent.
He said that even though our forces were taken by surprise by this menacing move, they fought back strongly and the Pakistan plans soon lay in ruins. The political leadership, led by Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, responded with vigor and determination. To relieve the pressure on Akhnoor, it was decided to expand both the ambit and the geography of the conflict. Pursuant to it, air power was deployed and a new front was opened by crossing the International Border in Punjab, threatening Pakistan’s primate city- Lahore. The conflict continued till September 22. The diplomatic efforts to respond to it shed useful light on the interests and assessments of the interested global powers, principally the United States, the Soviet Union, China and the United Nations.
The Vice President concluded that in the final analysis, the war was a costly military and political misadventure for Pakistan. The failure was camouflaged; even the announcement of ceasefire was described as fire bandi rather than jang bandi. Finally, and in a wider political perspective, some general conclusions that impact on decisions to initiate hostilities may be drawn. In the first place, purely bilateral wars are unlikely in our times. The decision to initiate hostilities may be an autonomous one; thereafter, however, all warlike conflicts tend to draw in concerned and interested players. The end of the conflict, therefore, can rarely be calculated with any degree of precision.