1965 war costly misadventure for Pakistan: Ansari

New Delhi, Sep 1 (IANS) Vice President M. Hamid Ansari on Tuesday said the 1965 war against India was a “costly misadventure” for Pakistan.

“In the final analysis, the war was a costly military and political misadventure for Pakistan,” Ansari said in his inaugural speech at a tri-services seminar here to commemorate the war.

“The failure was camouflaged; even the announcement of ceasefire was described as fire ‘bandi’ rather than ‘jang bandi’ (end of war),” Ansari said.

In a speech that revolved around the international political scenario during the war, the vice president said wars in future were highly unlikely to be bilateral.

He quoted the then US ambassador as saying that President Ayub Khan was disenchanted with Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s “reckless adventurism”, grieved over Pakistan’s losses and looking for “a sensible way out”.

“Purely bilateral wars are unlikely in our times,” Ansari said.

“The decision to initiate hostilities may be an autonomous one. Thereafter, however, all warlike conflicts tend to draw in concerned and interested players.”

Talking about the 1965 situation, the vice president admitted there was a feeling that the Tashkent agreement denied India political advantage of its military success.

Russian efforts to end the war led to the Tashkent pact on January 10, 1966.

“A view subsequently emerged that while the agreement brought the war to an end, it denied India the political advantage of its military successes because of pressure from major powers and the UN.

“Ironically, public reaction in Pakistan was similar, although for different considerations,” Ansari said.

He also said that the golden jubilee commemoration of the war “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”.

He called for drawing lessons from the 1965 conflict.

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