Education Resource

Behind the Story: The Terrorist Who Got Away

Just as Osama bin Laden drew the United States into a long, still ongoing military engagement in Afghanistan, there is one man who has played an outsize role in recent years in bringing India and Pakistan to the brink of conflict. That individual is a portly Pakistani cleric named Masood Azhar, who founded the Jaish-E-Mohammad in 2000, months after five Pakistani men hijacked an Indian Airlines flight and secured Azhar’s release from an Indian prison. In the years since, Azhar and the JEM have orchestrated a series of terrorist attacks on Indian soil to further the Pakistani military's objective of separating Kashmir from India. Despite the JEM owning responsibility for these attacks, Pakistan has repeatedly refused to act against Azhar or his organization, which Indian officials say has left India with no choice but to make incursions into Pakistani territory in pursuit of terrorists. Will India's new policy put an end to Pakistan's use of terrorism to wage a proxy war against India in Kashmir?