Saturday, May 6, 2023

Spy Stories: Inside the Secret World of the RAW and the ISI, by Cathy Scott-Clark Adrian Levy - Review

This is a fast-paced read, but which comes across more as a Pakistan ISI sponsored pamphlet. 

The material is haphazardly put together. The veracity of several key conclusions is unsubstantiated. One has to rely on the authors' word. No corroborative evidence is presented. Pakistan's point of view is presented without critical scrutiny, as gospel. India's external intelligence agency, R&AW, is painted as a diabolical outfit that is incompetent and unaccountable by turn. 

The strife in Kashmir is presented after suppressing all accounts of horrors perpetrated over the decades against the ethnic Hindu minority. Former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf is shown as a leader who tried to solve the Kashmir crisis, notwithstanding his complicity in several terrorist attacks on India. 

The authors draw an equivalence between terror groups like LeT, Al Qaeda, and Jaish on the one hand and so-called Hindu terror organizations on the other. The authors' dislike for India's National Security Advisor, Ajit Doval, borders on the disturbing. 

The Pulwama terrorist attack of 2019 is hinted at as a "false-flag" operation, using the same line of reasoning that would also make the 9/11 attacks in the United States a similar false flag operation. Yes, truly. 

India is the perpetual aggressor in this book, Pakistan the eternal wronged state at the receiving end. In other words, the authors seek to profit from luring gullible Indians into buying the book by promising them lurid details of spycraft, but delivers a left-liberal screed that whitewashes radical terrorism without compunctions.

© 2023, Abhinav Agarwal (अभिनव अग्रवाल). All rights reserved.