War Between India And Pakistan Would Be Useless And Violent

The India-Pakistan Skirmish In Kashmir Show War Would Be Both Useless And Dangerous

Kashmir has been caught in between these two countries as a disputed territory, and in turn, have lost 47,000 people since. How many lives would be lost if India and Pakistan went to war this time?

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The recent skirmishes in Kashmir, a disputed territory between India and Pakistan, should facilitate a reevaluation of India-Pakistan relations. The two nations have been on ill terms since their split in 1947 after winning independence from the British.

In case you haven't heard, there have been a series of threats and physical attacks from each side over the Kashmiri border. What started this recent round of disputes was a Pakistani militant group bomb attack on Indian troops at the border, several Indian soldiers killed. An Indian airstrike followed attacking the militant group's headquarters. Pakistan's military responded with two more airstrikes and claimed to have shot down an Indian plane. The rising conflict continued with the capture of an Indian pilot and a shot down Pakistani plane.

Tense Indian-Pakistani relations are nothing new, in fact, it's the norm.

During the struggle for independence, a once unified colony split into a sea of burning villages and riots as the British separated Muslims and Hindus from one another. While there was no perfect harmony between the two communities prior, there had been a peaceful enough coexistence. Since 1947, however, the two nations (though once the same people) have been in four wars and are currently inching towards one more.

What makes this so sad is not just the fact that it is essentially the same people fighting one another, but it's also the cause of a former Western power. Failing to look back on history, India and Pakistan have spent years believing in a viewpoint given by the British. Kashmir has been caught in between these two countries as a disputed territory, and in turn, have lost 47,000 people since. How many lives would be lost if India and Pakistan went to war this time?

Though they both seem to be unwilling to surrender, both countries would gain nothing in fighting a war. Pakistan would be challenging one of the world's biggest armies and one of the world's top economies. India would likely be fighting a country backed by much of the Middle East and even American weapon suppliers. To top it off, both India and Pakistan have nuclear weapons which could only mean mutually assured destruction, especially given the proximity to one another and the Kashmiri border. India's nuclear weapons were given by the Russians, whose indirect involvement might even instigate American involvement.

Both nations need to take a moment and think about the consequences of their actions on world order and peace.

War is costly, both in lives and in money, so would it be worthy to enter a war over years of unfounded hatred? Just like Israel and Palestine, India and Pakistan should acknowledge their own faults and should not claim religion as the basis for their actions as a state. The global community is comprised of many leaders who are wavering in their opinions, but the public can pressure them to do their job and take action.

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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My Heart Was Broken On Philippine Election Day

Don't ask me to move on just yet.

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I woke up to the unofficial, partial results of the midterm elections.

Quite predictably, the wife of Philippines' wealthiest topped the senatorial ladder. As my eyes slowly checked who completed the magic 12, tears started to appear out of nowhere.

Waves of emotions kicked in and swiftly bombarded me. I was left appalled, dejected, and miserably confused.

I felt defenseless.

My beloved nation has spoken and decided to resort to personality politics. The clodhopping charisma of action stars like Lapid and Revilla garnered more votes than the legal competence of Diokno and Hilbay. The strong machinery of the Cayetano and Angara political dynasties triumphed over the modest, but determined Colmenares and Macalintal. Not to mention, Bato and Go's mere proximity to the president placed them in the top five, quickly dismissing the daring spirit of Marawi City's Gutoc.

During the campaign period, citizens witnessed candidates who claimed to always care, but were front runners in promoting abuse of power and violence. Candidates who chose to dance their way through the stage instead of joining debates. Candidates who blatantly bought votes, rather than woo citizens with their credentials and platforms.

But why did they still win?

This might be the question of many.

This year's turnout is at its highest. Yes, voters were mobilized, but were they given enough framework to practice their suffrage strategically? The bulk of this year's votes came from class D, most popularly known as the masa. They encompassed 78 percent. Meanwhile, class E occupied 16 percent. Generally, these classes have a higher tendency to fall under the trap of gimmicks and entertainment, which the opposition clearly didn't provide. The remaining 6 percent were from classes ABC.

To be quite honest, I might have been too invested in this year's midterm elections; way more than ever before. But how can I not be when my nation's at war with itself? This time around, we actually had capable senatorial candidates who were worthy of the positions, but were still denied the chance. They didn't have enough financial backing and only volunteers and social media supporters kept their campaigns going.

My fellow men are continuously being blinded due to history's reinforcement. There is this deeply-rooted belief in the superiority that claimed dominance over others — creating an even wider disparity between the rich and the poor.

It is so easy and convenient to put the blame on the voters; to think that it was in their control. We seem to downplay that the crack is at the foundation. The existing systems that we trust, which supposedly build bridges, are in reality the ones burning bridges.

Amidst it all, even with self-preserved lapdogs dominating our government, I can't help but cling on to hope.

Hope comes in the form of the youthful Vico Sotto who ended the 27-year reign of the notorious Eusebio clan. In the form of Magdaleno Marcellones, Jr., a security guard who bravely went against the presidential daughter for the mayoral race in Davao City. In the form of everyone who voted and who will choose to vote again.

May these little beams of hope shed light into a better future, no matter how difficult.

Greater things await you, Philippines.

But you have to fight for it.

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