Surprisingly I was never taught this at school, courtesy of Rbth:
Washington DC, December 3, 1971, 10:45am.
US President Richard Nixon is on the phone with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, hours after Pakistan launched simultaneous attacks on six Indian airfields, a reckless act that prompted India to declare war.
Nixon: So West Pakistan giving trouble there.
Kissinger: If they lose half of their country without fighting they will be destroyed. They may also be destroyed this way but they will go down fighting.
Nixon: The Pakistan thing makes your heart sick. For them to be done so by the Indians and after we have warned the bitch (reference to Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi). Tell them that when India talks about West Pakistan attacking them it’s like Russia claiming to be attacked by Finland.
Washington, December 10, 1971, 10:51am.
A week later the war is not going very well for Pakistan, as Indian armour scythes through East Pakistan and the Pakistan Air Force is blown out of the subcontinent’s sky. Meanwhile, the Pakistani military in the west is demoralised and on the verge of collapse as the Indian Army and Air Force attack round the clock.
Nixon: Our desire is to save West Pakistan. That’s all.
Kissinger: That’s right. That is exactly right.
Nixon: All right. Keep those carriers moving now.
Kissinger: The carriers—everything is moving. Four Jordanian planes have already moved to Pakistan, 22 more are coming. We’re talking to the Saudis, the Turks we’ve now found are willing to give five. So we’re going to keep that moving until there’s a settlement.
Nixon: Could you tell the Chinese it would be very helpful if they could move some forces or threaten to move some forces?
Kissinger: Absolutely. Continue reading