For saber-rattlers on both sides of the Kashmiri border, water rights have become part and parcel to the narrative of Indo-Pakistani tensions. Beginning with partition in 1947, three full-blown wars, numerous undeclared conflicts, and an active insurgency have led to hundreds of thousands of causalities in the ongoing dispute between India and Pakistan. Since both countries completed the testing of nuclear fission weapons in 1998, the specter of nuclear conflict has cast an apocalyptic pall over the seemingly immutable regional conflict. At the center of the tension between the south Asian neighbors is the disputed region known as Kashmir. The mountainous region is home to a singularly unique history, a Muslim majority with separatist elements, and abundant natural resources. Arguably the most vital of these resources in one taken for granted in many parts of the world: freshwater.
Thomas E. Robins, Defusing Hydroelectric Brinkmanship: The Indus Waters Treaty's Alternative Dispute Resolution Provisions and Their Role in the Tenuous Peace Between India and Pakistan, 5 Y.B. Arb. & Mediation 389 (2013).