Kashmir: Regional instability doesn't stop food effort

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Kashmiri journalist Ashwaq Masoodi is a Harvard Nieman 2020 fellow.

Rob Chaney Rob Chaney

Beyond the Led Zeppelin song, above the K2 mountain-climbing exploits, Kashmir is becoming one of those faraway places in the world Americans better study up on.

“What’s unfolding in Afghanistan has implications for Kashmir, all the way over to Bhutan and across the whole Himalayan border region,” said University of Montana geography professor Sarah Halvorson.

“Kashmir is a flashpoint, but many Americans do not realize what the cause is,” Halvorson said. “It’s one of the most entrenched geopolitical challenges of our time. It’s in between two nuclear powers, who’ve fought three wars against each other on the highest battlefield on the planet. Things are highly charged in the Kashmir conflict.”

Officially known as Jammu and Kashmir, the region lies in the mountains between India and Pakistan. Both nations claim it, although India has the most physical control of the area. Its population of 13 million people is 60% Muslim, while India is 80% Hindu.

Residents there have

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