The world has been watching the war between Russia and Ukraine in fear for months. While the war, which cost tens of thousands of lives, continues at full speed, the concerns that conventional conflict may turn into nuclear war remain hot. Years later, former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo explained how the world came back from the brink of nuclear war.
Flash words from former US Secretary of State Pompeo: In 2019, nuclear war was over the brink
The eyes and ears of the world are on the news from Ukraine for 11 months.
However, what happened thousands of kilometers away from Ukraine was revealed by the statements of former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Years later, Pompeo explained how the world came back from the brink of nuclear war.
Pompeo, who published his memoirs, wrote that this situation came after India retaliated against militants on Pakistani soil following an attack against Indian troops in Kashmir.
Pakistan at that time announced that two Indian jets were shot down and an Indian pilot was captured.
Although India and Pakistan claim all of Kashmir, both countries control parts of the region.
India has long accused Pakistan of supporting separatists in the Kashmir Valley, but the Islamabad administration denies this allegation.
Neighboring nuclear powers have fought three wars since their independence from Britain in 1947, two of which were fought over Kashmir.
Pompeo wrote in his book that he “thought the world didn’t know how close we were to a nuclear war in February 2019 in the India-Pakistan rivalry.”
“The truth is I don’t know the answer either, I just know it’s very close,” Pompeo said.
“I will never forget the night when India and Pakistan started threatening each other over the decades-old problem in Kashmir while negotiating nuclear weapons with the North Koreans at the summit in Hanoi,” says Mike Pompeo .
Explaining that after the attack, which killed more than 40 Indian soldiers, India responded with air strikes on Pakistani territory, Pompeo says, “In the subsequent dogfight, the Pakistanis shot down a plane and took the Indian pilot hostage.”
Pompeo later said that he met with his Indian counterpart and said, “He believed that the Pakistanis were preparing their nuclear weapons for the attack, and that they were making their own preparations. “I told him not to do anything and give me a minute to fix things.”
The former US Minister states that they then started to work with National Security Advisor John Bolton, reaching the then Chief of General Staff of Pakistan, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, and conveying what the Indian side said.
“He said it wasn’t true. As expected, he said that India is preparing its nuclear weapons. It took several hours to convince both sides that the other was not preparing for a nuclear conflict, and our teams in New Delhi and Islamabad worked hard. No other country could have done what we did to prevent this horror.”
Neither India nor Pakistan has yet made a statement about Pompeo’s allegations.
Jayshi Mohammed (JeM) claimed responsibility for the attack on Indian soldiers in 2019. In India, then, for the first time since 1971, he crossed the Line of Control separating the two countries’ borders and carried out an airstrike.