WASHINGTON - The new generation of Kashmiris struggling to gain freedom from India is following the tactics of Palestinian intifada - using stones against the occupation forces instead of guns - in a serious effort to gain international attention to their cause, according to a major US newspaper. The latest outbreak of dissent here, dubbed 'Kashmirs stone war, marks a shift in the mostly Muslim regions long-running struggle for autonomy, The Washington Post said in a dispatch from Srinagar published in its Saturday edition. In a post-9/11, globalised world, Pakistan-backed separatists no longer roam the streets of this summer capital with guns. Instead, the heirs to the conflict are styling their discontent after cell phone images of the Palestinian uprising and its stone-throwing youths, wrote Emily Wax, the Post Correspondent. Sajid Shah, a Kashmiri activist known as 'Lion of Allah defended the use of stones against Indian security forces. If we take up arms, the world will call us terrorists. Stone pelting is the only way to fight for our freedom, he said. It makes India think. It makes the world think: Whats happening in Kashmir? We will get our freedom with the stone. But Indias Central Reserve Police Force chief, NK Tripati, has described the new tactic as gunless terrorism He said the new tactic of stone throwing was testing Indias ability to manage dissent in the region and to protect its image as an aspiring superpower that hopes for a seat on the UN Security Council. The dispatch said the protests have grown deadly in the past few weeks, with at least 15 young people killed when Indian security forces fired into crowds of stone throwers. Many Indians have said that the security forces should find safer methods of controlling teenagers who pelt them with stones, the paper said. Indian forces were caught with their pants down by these stone throwers, Ajay Sahni, executive director of New Delhis Institute for Conflict Management, was quoted as saying. The killings were pure incompetence. We had all the intelligence that this was being planned. We heard the chatter over the Internet and phones. Despite this, there wasnt an effective response, only a lethal one. The cycle of the hurled stone and the bullet fired back grew so deadly that Omar Abdullah, chief minister of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, called last week for the Indian army to be deployed for the first time in more than a decade to assist state police and paramilitary forces. Curfews were imposed, the Post dispatch noted. The state even blocked text messages, which were used to organise the stone-throwing, it said. Omar Abdullah defended Indian security forces response to combat stone-pelting Kashmiri youth. For over 20 years, the security forces were conditioned to believe the biggest challenge was militancy, Abdullah Wednesday was quoted as saying. Now its youngsters hurling stones that whiz at them at 40 miles an hour. Obviously, the response has to be different. Many Kashmiris say that Abdullah, Indias youngest chief minister, forfeited popular support when he called in the Indian army to quell the protests, according to the dispatch. Abdullah said he had no choice. I sleep well at night, he said. I would have rather called in the army than lost one more child. Abdullah said his office is auditing the security forces equipment and training them to deal with stone-pelting teenagers using more-advanced crowd-control techniques, such as sonic waves or stink bombs. PAK SUPPORT SHUT DOWN BY US There is also hope that the United States will keep pressure on Pakistan, which, with nudging from Washington, has worked to shut down the pipeline of militants entering Kashmir, correspondent Wax wrote. The United States has spent nearly $12 billion in the past eight years to bolster the Pakistani military. The stone-throwing this summer began June 11, when a 17-year-old student, Tufail Mattoo, was killed by a tear-gas shell that shattered his skull, making him an instant martyr. The tactic has a long history in Kashmir, but many here say that this year, it has taken on a new resonance for Kashmirs youth, who make up 70 percent of the population, the dispatch said. One young Kashmiri with a degree in computer applications edited a powerful video to the lyrics of the Ever last song Stone in My Hand and posted it on YouTube, prompting police to launch a manhunt for him, it said. The lyrics - I got no pistol, aint got no sword. I got no army, aint got no land. All I got is stones in my hand - became the anthem of Kashmiri youth and is hummed on the streets here, the paper said. The stone throwers have adopted noms de guerre that range from the intimidating - like the 13-year-old who calls himself Deadly Accident - to the surreal, like the young man who named himself Uncle Chips after his favourite snack. They come from a cross section of Kashmiri society. Some are well-educated members of a Facebook group, the Kashmir Stone Throwers Association. Others are paid by opposition and separatist groups to stir up trouble. Sajid Shah, the 21-year-old, said he admires the Palestinian cause because of its David-vs.-Goliath spirit and thinks of the uprising as a Kashmiri intifada. Today, stones are our only message of resistance, he said. If we dont throw stones, India and the world will think everything is fine in Kashmir. Its not. Shah said he admires the Palestinian cause because of its David-vs.-Goliath spirit and thinks of the uprising as a Kashmiri intifada.