Two simple facts speak powerfully against that argument. First, the sheer number of refugees is irrefutable evidence of the brutal policies pursued by the Government of Pakistan to crush the people who won the election; and second, the sharp increase in Hindu refugees in the past weeks shows the undertaking of a “Holy War”. There are now some 5 million refugees in India with-thousands more crossing the border each day. Based on interviews I conducted with a cross-section of the refugees. I now believe that a calculated attempt to crush the intellectual life of the Bengali community occurred because of mass killings of professors, students and everyone of any distinction by the Army. This, in my judgment, gives credence to the charge of genocide.
In addition, the sudden emergence of a majority of Hindu refugees has resulted from a calculated reign of terror by the army to inspire and inflame communal tensions. These tensions naturally existed, because the 10 million Hindus in East Pakistan were a small minority and it would be foolish to contend that Bengalis took no action themselves against non-Bengalis in the region. However, I believe that the long stored passions were ignited by the thwarting of the will of the people and as terrible as the stores of Bengali violence may be, they cannot be used to justify any action of the central government.
An Internal Matter of Mankind
The argument has been advanced that the world community cannot and should not take action to alleviate the suffering, because it is an internal matter of Pakistan.
At the risk of repetitiveness, let me again refer to the refugees. The latest reports from Indian sources, the only sources who can really speak with any authority, the figure has now reached at least 5 million. It cannot be argued that a policy which generates sufficient terror to cause 5 million people to flee into a neighboring country is strictly an internal matter. It is semantic nonsense to call a policy internal only which continues to create refugees at the figure of some 100,000 a day. It cannot be argued that the incredible strain this situation puts on India is not the legitimate concern of the world.
Quite obviously, Mr. Speaker, the situation in East Pakistan is not an internal matter of Pakistan.
In addition, let me quote the testimony of Senator Edward Kennedy before the Asian and Pacific Affairs Subcommittee on May 11. We had asked Senator Kennedy to appear, because of the outstanding work being done by his Subcommittee on Refugees of the Senate Committee the judiciary' in describing the impact of policy on people and in disclosing the humanitarian demands of people living in areas where wars have been conducted. The Senator testified:
In the name of neutrality, some in our government say we must not be involved in East Pakistan today. But we are involved. Our weapons have been involved in the violence. Our aid has contributed to West Pakistan's development for more than a decade. And today our government, at the highest level, is involved in discussions for even more aid. So we are involved.