India out. GST war on islam. Islamist leader Abdelilah Benkirane as Morocco Premier (write to: abdulruff_jnu@yahoo.com)

India out.

GST war on islam.

Islamist leader Abdelilah Benkirane as Morocco Premier

-DR. ABDUL RUFF

abdulruff_jnu@yahoo.com

_________

Parliament in Rabat, Morocco, 20 November 2011

I – Poll

Moroccans have elected new lower house of parliament on 25 November, in the first national vote since the approval of constitutional reforms in July billed as laying the foundations for a fully-fledged constitutional monarchy. Moderate Islamists, as expected, did well the vote after a similar success in Tunisia’s first democratic election a month ago and the Justice and Development Party (PJD) emerged as the biggest party in Friday’s parliamentary elections.

The Justice and Development Party (PJD) took 107 seats out of the 395 in Parliament, almost twice as many as the second-place nationalist Istiqlal party, with 60 seats. The election was held more than a year early, after pro-democracy demonstrations swept the country earlier this year as part of the regionwide Arab Spring.

The leader of a moderate Islamist party Abdelilah Benkirane has been appointed by King Mohammed VI as Morocco’s new prime minister. Abdelilah will now hold talks on forming a coalition government.  His Justice and Development Party has not been in government before.

The PJD’s victory follows that of Tunisia’s Islamist Ennahda Party in an election there last month. Following elections, King Mohammed VI is for the first time obliged to choose the prime minister from the largest party, rather than naming whoever he pleases. King Mohammed received Benkirane, who is the PJD’s secretary general, in the mountain town of Midelt and named him head of government with the task of forming a new government.

Under a new constitution approved by referendum in July, the king has to choose a prime minister from the party that won the most seats. The constitution also gives the prime minister more powers to govern, but the king still has the final say on issues of defence, security and religion. The reforms were supported by all the main political parties, which called on their supporters to back the proposals in the referendum.

The 20 February movement, which spearheaded Morocco’s pro-democracy protests earlier this year, has called for a boycott of the elections, dismissing them as a “piece of theatre”. It says the constitutional changes approved in July are superficial, and perpetuate a “facade of democracy” that – it says – has disguised continuing royal rule for decades.

King Mohammed VI presented the constitutional changes as a far-reaching concession to Arab Spring-style pro-democracy protests, but activists believe they will do little to change the actual power structure and have called for a boycott of the elections. As a result of the constitutional changes approved by 98% of those voting in a 1 July referendum, the position of the prime minister, who must now be appointed from the largest party in parliament, has also been enhanced, gaining the authority to appoint government officials and dissolve parliament.  However, the parliament will have a greater share of power and – in theory – will play the leading role in a legislative process previously dominated by the king.

Benkirane, who was elected head of his party in 2008, leads its more pro-monarchy faction. He has repeatedly stated his support for a strong king, even though some of his colleagues would prefer a less powerful ruler. “The head of the state is king and no-one can govern without him,” he told supporters. The PJD has said it will promote Islamic finance. However, it has avoided focusing on issues such as alcohol and headscarves for women.

Many of the protesters who took to the streets in February feel the reforms still fall far short of their demands for a democratic, constitutional monarchy, and have called for a boycott. Ahead of the poll, the sleepy calm of the capital, Rabat, was occasionally punctuated by the marches of unemployed graduates. But the country’s powerful monarchy and the system that supports it appear to have averted any direct, mortal challenge for now.

A low turnout in the parliamentary poll would detract from the legitimacy of King Mohammed VI’s reforms and could hint at future problems.

II – Morocco

The Kingdom of Morocco is the most westerly of the North African countries known as the Maghreb. To the south, the status of Western Sahara remains unresolved. Morocco annexed the territory in 1975 and a guerrilla war with Algerian-backed pro-independence forces ended in 1991. UN efforts have failed to break the political deadlock. To the north, a dispute with Spain in 2002 over the tiny island of Perejil revived the issue of the sovereignty of Melilla and Ceuta. The small enclaves on the Mediterranean coast are surrounded by Morocco and have been administered by Madrid for centuries.

Strategically situated with both Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines, but with a rugged mountainous interior, it stayed independent for centuries while developing a rich culture blended from Arab, Berber, European and African influences.  However, Morocco was a French protectorate from 1912 to 1956, when Sultan Mohammed became king. He was succeeded in 1961 by his son, Hassan II, who ruled for 38 years. He played a prominent role in the search for peace in the Middle East, given the large number of Israelis of Moroccan origin, but was criticized for suppressing domestic opposition. A truth commission set up to investigate human rights violations during Hassan’s reign confirmed nearly 10,000 cases, ranging from death in detention to forced exile. After his death in 1999 Hassan was succeeded by his son, who became King Mohammed VI and was seen as a modernizer. There has been some economic and social liberalization, but the monarch has retained sweeping powers.

King Mohammed is aided by a powerful propaganda machine – his image adorns streets and shops across the country. Central to the monarchical regime’s strength is its longevity – the Alaoui dynasty gained control of most of Morocco in 1664 – and its claim of descent from the Prophet Muhammad. The king has tremendous religious and political capital – it’s not just the king but the whole political establishment, the monarchy and the “makhzen” provide for the patronage network that embodies Morocco’s ruling elite.

Moroccan citizens, many of them poor and illiterate and living in rural areas, are made to believe that the monarch has a special gift or blessing and they feel that they have some psychological relationship with the king. Symbolic rituals also boost his status. In an annual ceremony of allegiance, the “bay’a”, Moroccan officials bow before the king as he parades on a horse.

Despite these traditional trappings, the monarchy under the 48-year-old king has taken on a more modern, reformist image. His father, Hassan II, ran a notoriously brutal regime between 1961 and 1999. Opponents were tortured and protests repressed.  1965, the interior minister at the time, Gen Mohammed Oufkir, supervised a crackdown on demonstrations in Casablanca from a helicopter while – according to one story – personally spraying rioters with a machine gun. But a process of gradual reform began in the final years of Hassan’s rule, and continued with his son. It included a family law that advanced women’s rights and a truth commission that explored abuses under King Hassan – though none of those responsible were prosecuted.

Along with Ennahda in Tunisia and the Justice and Development Party (AKP) in Turkey, it places itself within a contemporary movement to promote and respect Islam and reconcile Islam and democracy. Coalitions of more secular, royalist parties have tried to smother it and the Islamists have found it hard to directly challenge the king because of his religious status as “commander of the faithful”. It too is seen by many as being in the pocket of the palace. The PJD here in Morocco is presenting the ‘third way’ between revolution and the uncertainty of the current system.

The toppling of long-standing leaders in Tunisia and Egypt at the beginning of the year is widely seen as having caught the Moroccan regime off-guard, at a time when the reform process had stagnated. As Morocco’s own protest movement took shape, a long-held taboo was breached. It’s the first time in Morocco that the king was openly criticized and they didn’t shoot people. Instead, the monarchy’s response was to promise changes including rights guarantees and more powers for the parliament. These were enshrined in a new constitution that was approved by referendum in July.

III – Observations

Maybe, the Arab World is in the process of changing but Arabs still don’t know the results and what will happen in Egypt, Tunisia, Syria or Yemen especially the destruction of Libya by the NATO-UNSC terror organizations. The moderately Islamist Justice and Development Party (PJD), which has been buoyed by the recent reforms, and by the gains Islamists have made elsewhere in the region, could win the election and so supply the next prime minister.

Leaders of Morocco claim they are presenting the way of reform without losing the stability, the unity of the country- but at the same time furthering the democratic agenda of Morocco.

Morocco’s ruling elite thinks it has skillfully sidestepped the revolutionary fervor sweeping the Arab world by offering a milder, more peaceful vision of change. Critics of the reforms point in particular to the fact that the king will still have wide-ranging executive powers, in particular control over foreign, defence and security policy. Activists also say the reforms will not end the behind-the-scenes dominance of the “makhzen” – a power apparatus of veteran politicians, powerful businesspeople, the security forces and royal officials controlled by the king through a system of patronage.

Morocco is bidding for membership of the European Union, its main trade partner, but there appears to be little enthusiasm for this within the bloc.

Morocco has been given the status of non-Nato ally by Washington, which has praised its support for the US-led war on terror. After deadly suicide bombings in Casablanca in 2003, Morocco launched a crackdown on suspected Islamic militants.

The message of a democratic agenda and gradual change is one that has gone down well with Morocco’s allies in the anti-Islamic US and Europe who promote pro-west leaders in Muslim world and destabilize the Muslim nations if the leaders do not buy CIA terror gimmicks…

Political and poll bribery is common. Sheep were being handed out to voters, and over the last few months, the protest movement has been subject to a smear campaign, arrests, and intimidation at the hands of shadowy groups of pro-monarchy thugs known as “baltaja”. But Moroccans say they will show the Western world that Morocco can bring about a gentle revolution and the nation can travel towards a real democracy.

In Morocco elections are never decisive as the king retains ultimate control and though parliament has more power, parties are weak. The electoral system is prepared on purpose not to let anyone succeed, so it’s impossible to get more than 20% of the seats in parliament and this is to allow the monarchy to dominate. The manipulation of the party system is just one of the old-fashioned tactics still being deployed to bolster the status quo.  According to analysts, the reforms passed this year are largely cosmetic, and there is no guarantee they will be put into practice on the ground. However, so long as it plays the NATO fiddle well, it has got nothing to worry.

Claims, fake or real, of descent from the Prophet Muhammad (Peace) by a few pampered Muslim leaders might be fashionable but are ridiculous if they decline to promote true Islam in the society. Moroccan king clams the same of being a descent from the Prophet Muhammad but he shamelessly sides with NATO terrorism and western anti-Islamism. A Muslim nation that promotes anti-Islamism and helps, directly or otherwise, the anti-Islamic GST rogues and refuses to promote Islamic way of life and institutionalize Islamic law on daily basis ceases to be a Muslim nation.  Muslim leaders in such societies are guilty of anti-Islamic crimes.

Elected premier Islamist leader Abdelilah Benkirane, though worships the king, has a responsibly constructive role to play in this regard so that Islam takes firm roots in the society. Americans, Britishers and other western terrocrats cannot help him or Morocco in this regard. Benkirane’s pro-people policies and their proper implementation would greatly benefit not just Muslims but entire humanity in some measure.

Muhammad praying at the Ka’ba.

——–
د. عبد راف

Dr. Abdul Ruff, Specialist on State Terrorism; Educationalist;Chancellor-Founder of Centor for International Affairs(CIA); Independent Analyst;Chronicler of Foreign occupations & Freedom movements(Palestine,Kashmir, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Xinjiang, Chechnya, etc); Anti-Muslimism and anti-Islamism are more dangerous than “terrorism” Anti-Islamic forces & terrorists are using criminal elements for terrorizing the world and they in disguise are harming genuine interests of ordinary Muslims. Global media today, even in Muslim nations, are controlled by CIA  & other anti-Islamic agencies. Former university Teacher;/website:abdulruff.wordpress.com

My educational path: My favorite teacher: Random thoughts

My educational path: My favorite teacher: Random thoughts.

My educational path: My favourite teacher: Random thoughts

 

My educational path: My favourite teacher: Random thoughts

 – Dr. Abdul Ruff

_____________________

 

Do we have favorite teachers?

I would rush to say that as a self made person I am my own teacher, favorite or otherwise, and I don’t wish to consider anybody else as my favourite teacher. That view would indeed be a highly individualistic and, in fact, a  selfish approach to one’s own life. That amounts to negation of truth. Without truth life, even if successful, is meaningless.

As a student I perhaps had many favorite teachers certainly more than one. But we small boys never discussed those issues. I looked upon teachers as very precious people born to help children like me.

You will agree with me that that is not a genuine understanding of one’s life. We have learned a lot of good and bad things from the society, from the people around and in the school itself.

Teachers from school to university help us with the proper and genuine development of our character.  This very crucial task of character building exercises cannot be done by our parents or friends because parents upbring children in their “colorful” ways so that their sweet children become big guys and important ladies, with or without genuine understanding of life that helps in them mould strong character.

It is likely at times that a few parents also try to mould the character and positive mindset of their children but very often than not they do not succeed and they invariably fail to train or make any lasting impact on their own children like what teachers do.

Unfortunately, the parents negatively influence their children because they do not have any genuine rapport and therefore keep quarreling, abuse one another, insult one another, thereby making their children feel insecure. This is because they lack the necessary parental aptitudes. At times by showering over-affection on the little children and refusing to punish their wrong doings, mistakes parents in fact spoil them in their early life itself. That is indeed harmful for the future of children. News reports let us know that some misguided parents force chidden to run away, to commit crimes, to commit suicide. That is cruel.

Of course, not every teacher proves self to be inspiring, motivating or positive and some of them could be dangerously dull and pathetically weak and unproductive.   However, even if one teacher is bad, misbehaves and negative in attitudes towards life and education and in relations with pupils, there are many teachers there to help the little children mold their character.

When I think of spotting my best or favourite teacher, frankly, I don’t get any particular teacher in the role, maybe because I am also a teacher trying to communicate with a large section of common people.

But believe me what comes to my mind quickly when such questions rise is entire my university life in New Delhi altogether that may have molded me into what I am, if at all,  capable of today.

Jawaharlal Nehru University, or in short JNU, remains my lifeline and that multidisciplinary institution by and large could be my favorite teacher if I have to concede. Conversely, had I not been a student and teacher of JNU perhaps, please trust me, I would have been different, may be a useless human being.

Generally speaking, plenty of officals in Indian Administrative Services, Foreign Services and Police Services belong to JNU. I keep JNU in high esteem not because of that. Of course, I am not unhappy that I am not one among them. Frankly, I am not as intelligent, hard working or studious as they are and so I can’t compare me with them. After getting enrolled for a master’s or research program at JNU they spent most of their time at JNU preparing for administrative services or trying to go abroad for higher studies or work.  I wonder if these hardworking youth focus on their studies for which they take admissions at JNU, possibly the quality of university education and research would have gone up considerably, taking JNU to the level of many high standard western institutions. But then India also needs good administrators to help central and state governments run the governance as smoothly as desirable. .

I could very easily justify my keeping JNU on top of my life by saying  it give a job fairly easier than I thought it would be and easier than many of my classmates got there or elsewhere. That is not the reason as I would have got a job elsewhere too, except in states like Tamil Nadu or Kerala where bribes make wonders in appointments.   Certainly I would not have offered bribes to the “concerned” to get a job. But I would have got a job in some university where bribes do not make a criterion for selection. Not only JNU gave me an initial job it also gave me an orientation necessary to face the educational world. However, the forces around me were so strong I could not survive the pull and push of them. Maybe, communal or community troubles or something else more than that are behind my bad luck. I am not sure.  I failed to detect people scheming against me. I collapsed, unable to comprehend or control my own steps, my own destiny…. I expected God, who knows everything, to do the needful. I don’t think I am mistaken.

I admire JNU for its role in my life. I learned a lot from being I at JNU for many years, first as a student and research scholar and then as a s a teacher. Believe me it was at JNU that I realized that the world has got many good souls as well.

At times, I think about possible life had I continued to study in my district of Tamil Nadu perhaps I would have got a job or I would have ended in some odd job to sustain my family. Or, worse, some examiner would have failed me at examination in practical as I would have been a science student for graduation. Thank God I had the fortune to join JNU to learn about life. .

Only those who have got no resources to pursue studies alone would know the importance of an institution that offers free education with scholarship and hostel facilities almost everything was free. I studies ignoring opposition from my guardian in New Delhi who refused to give the initial fee to register for an honors program. As my guardian pressed me to do some work instead of studies, I had tough time getting those some rupees from him for registration and by the grace of God, I managed and after words, I did not require any financial help from him as I could depend on scholarship. As my studies progressed in the first year, my guardian left for Kashmir for business there, leaving me to my own fate, now officially.  I began my independent life.  Thanks to my kind teachers I could  pass the  honors and MA but  I decided  to switch  disciple and I was denied fellowship  by “experts”  for M. Phil program in International studies where such matters are decided  by high level influences that I did not have. Then my teacher came to my rescue and gave me a job to continue my studies.  Thus I became a university teacher all of a sudden. As my fate began playing its own role, I kept on changing places not knowing where exactly I was heading for.

I thank God for being so kind to let me have education, as much as I desire, even more than I could expect from my little life, I certainly do not blame  Him  for all the troubles I had to face in service to nation.

The SIS experts who come with their own “favorite” candidates for fellowships for research programs reminded me of those anti-social elements that sell tickets in black at cinema theatres. Here I don’t blame my own poor fate.

I have studied in private institutions, for instance for PG Diploma in Educational Administration in an Institute at Vellore, Tamil Nadu but I had pay a lot money and incur other expenses. The IGNOU charged big money for a PG Diploma in Distance Education but then I was already employed and earning. I could afford paid special education. Once as I was returning to Hyderabad from Vellore,  I was given tea with something that made me unconscious from early morning to evening and I found myself sitting  at  Green  café at Secunderabad (Telengana) and I was weak and found some  people, most probably from railways,  were watching me. I was helpless and at the mercy of Indian network people. I still do not know why did they do that way- keeping me in an unconscious way, almost dead for a whole day – and where exactly.

Somebody told me that the Interpol guys are behind all this, but why?

When I was pursuing my second PhD at JNU after my nasty and bitter experience with EFLU where worked most of my career, I was attacked in a running train by the so-called security forces BSF in civil dress but I was saved by fellow passenger. The BSF guys quarreled with him for coming in their way. .

Most of the students at JNU as well as teachers were rich. With plenty of money in their pockets as regular expenditure sum, students just enjoy life, even begin to smoke, drink alcohol and use drugs because they are free from the parental control mechanisms. However, many students and even researchers very tactfully escape that awful route. I am one among them.

When I unambiguously declare JNU as my best teacher of life, by no means I say  other institutions with which I have been fortunate to be  associated with either as students/researcher or teacher.  Obviously I benefited greatly from my studies or service or both with institutions from primary school to university.

A little Girl’s primary school very close to my house in native town where I began my educational life with no family educational background and without enough books, food and proper clothing and then the VKP High School not far way of my house and later Laskhmirpuram College of Arts and Sciences which was 3 miles walking distance then – all gave me lessons on life I practiced after that at JNU. In fact, in JNU I was first recognized as a useful person.

I need to mention here that quite a lot of teachers from primary school right up to university were fond of me and really helped me come over difficulties. Some of them are warm people.  I prefer avoiding names here because the list would have been too long. Moreover, if I leave out a couple of teachers by chance – that is possible given a large number of teachers in my life –  that would be unfair on my part as injustice would be done to those persons. Let them all live in my heart even after I leave this world, finally forgetting all my tiny achievements and great disappointments….

Indian institutions like IGNOU, Mysore University, CIEFL (now EFLU), Uniferro International Limited did influence greatly my life. They made me human, helped me live with some sort of dignity. They honored me by degrees, diplomas, certificates, doctorates, etc. My education at the Pushkin Institute in Moscow had a deep impact on my perceptions of life.

In fact, not just conventional educational institutions that contributed to my swings in my life patterns. Sermons in Mosque, Church and other religious discourse also may have shaped my world views, although I may not have changed much in any sense of the term.

The surroundings, journeys, among other constructive studies could have improved my understanding of life and people. That is indeed highly impressive development. Recently I was listening to some film music and the lyric by poet Kannadasan impressed me much for his philosophical ideas that are conveyed in fine music tunes. I feel I am just nobody, or maybe a small fry in a very large ocean of talented people.

It is not how much successful I am in life at this point of time. But I am fully satisfied with my title life. Those who know my early school and college life would testify the pivotal importance of my grandmother in my life and without her own commitment to my education I would not have gone beyond 7th class- seriously! In fact, I was forced to stop my studies at 7th std and I resumed school after a couple of years.

On the one hand, it gives me enormous happiness and sense of satisfaction that despite stiff opposition, protests and negative attitude by my own parents, relatives, without sources for proper food I could get the high level of education in India by the grace of God and with active support and help from my teachers.

Fate has always been ruthless with me; it never allowed me to be a good human to others, to myself. .

Journalistic writings, for which I seem to have developed some flair, are fairly easier to engage with than say prose or poetry.  Prose and poetry generally require not just planning but more than anything else the necessary basic literary sensibilities, creative mindset. These cannot be generated artificially and without genuine aptitude for creative writing, literary works die prematurely.

Even in literary works, poetry is more difficult than prose writings like stories or novels though they are lengthy and too elaborate. Poetry differs from prose not only in the format itself, in rhymes and meters, but by the way poets choose words and phrases – they use a fewer words than prose writers to describe life. That the poets can employ fewer words than prose writers to express the same human or living feelings and life situations makes them a special category of litterateurs.

I know too well that poetry or prose is not my cup of sweet tea I love to drink. Also, I am not very sure if my journalistic writings have been able to articulate good thoughts I wish for others and put across positive ideas to the global readers who might be reading me.  But this is safest medium that came to me so that I can communicate with the world.

I was enjoying life, for the first time in life in Moscow – Indian government had sent me to pursue research and text book production – , travelling in metro trains, trolleybuses, eating ice cream in cold winter, when I received a letter from University of Mysore appointing me as a lecturer. I decided to return to India thinking of serving India but not knowing the future consequences for that crucial, if not unwise, decision.  Though my return made my grandmother happy and my home safe, in the longer times the decision of the devils has pushed me to sideways.  I tried for a job in my home state and neighboring state Kerala but devils in these regions had the upper hand to deny me opportunities. As fate played its role aggressively, I left University of Mysore, not in a hurry of course (I conducted my last classes to my students for a few days even after I tendered resignation), to join the CIEFL (EFLU) hoping for a new life in Hyderabad but not knowing well the life would be more difficult for me there.  Initially I was proven wrong but slowly devils began to laugh at me, again …

There is definitely one area where parents as well as teachers – even piers- play significant role in one’s life:  inculcating a sense of disciple into children. Children try to pick up a few elements of discipline both from parents and teacher, others. If they don’t, their only resort is self discipline which is very difficult However, if children have cultivated a sense of self discipline, then, nothing can shake him in life. I don’t know if I have acquired discipline or perfected in self discipline, I always admire those who are genuinely disciplined.

Self disciple, if at all, may have saved me from total collapse. I can’t blame God for what the devils, official as well as private, do in my life.

____________________________

Hillary Clinton to contest US presidency 2016

Hillary Clinton to contest US presidency 2016.

My favorite teacher: Random thoughts- 2

My favorite teacher: Random thoughts- 2

 – Dr. Abdul Ruff

_____________________

 

Do people have favorite teachers?

I would rush to say that as a self made person I am my own teacher, favorite or otherwise, and I don’t wish to consider anybody else as my favourite teacher. That view would indeed be highly individualistic and, in fact,  a selfish approach to one’s own life. That amounts to negation of truth.

As a student I perhaps had many favorite teachers certainly more than one. But we small boys never discussed those issues. I looked upon teachers as very precious people born to help children like me.

You will agree with me that that is not a genuine understanding of one’s life. We have learned a lot of good and bad things from the society, from the people around and in the school itself.

Teachers from school to university help us with the proper and genuine development of our character.  This very crucial task of character building exercises cannot be done by our parents or friends because parents upbring children in their “colorful” ways so that their sweet children become big guys and important ladies, with or without genuine understanding of life that helps in them mould strong character.

It is likely at times that a few parents also try to mould the character and positive mindset of their children but very often than not they do not succeed and they invariably fail to train or make any lasting impact on their own children like what teachers do.

Unfortunately, the parents negatively influence their children because they do not have any genuine rapport and therefore keep quarreling, abuse one another, insult one another, thereby making their children feel insecure. This is because they lack the necessary parental aptitudes. At times by showering over-affection on the little children and refusing to punish their wrong doings, mistakes parents in fact spoil them in their early life itself. That is indeed harmful for the future of children. News reports let us know that some misguided parents force chidden to run away, to commit crimes, to commit suicide. That is cruel.

Of course, not every teacher proves self to be inspiring, motivating or positive and some of them could be dangerously dull and pathetically weak and unproductive.   However, even if one teacher is bad, misbehaves and negative in attitudes towards life and education and in relations with pupils, there are many teachers there to help the little children mold their character.

When I think of spotting my best or favourite teacher, frankly, I don’t get any particular teacher in the role, maybe because I am also a teacher trying to communicate with a large section of common people.

But believe me what comes to my mind quickly when such questions rise is entire my university life in New Delhi altogether that may have molded me into what I am, if at all,  capable of today.

Jawaharlal Nehru University, or in short JNU, remains my lifeline and that multidisciplinary institution by and large could be my favorite teacher if I have to concede. Conversely, had I not been a student and teacher of JNU perhaps, please trust me, I would have been different, may be a useless human being.

Generally speaking, plenty of officals in Indian Administrative Services, Foreign Services and Police Services belong to JNU. I keep JNU in high esteem not because of that. Of course, I am not unhappy that I am not one among them. Frankly, I am not as intelligent, hard working or studious as they are and so I can’t compare me with them. After getting enrolled for a master’s or research program at JNU they spent most of their time at JNU preparing for administrative services or trying to go abroad for higher studies or work.  I wonder if these hardworking youth focus on their studies for which they take admissions at JNU, possibly the quality of university education and research would have gone up considerably, taking JNU to the level of many high standard western institutions. But then India also needs good administrators to help central and state governments run the governance as smoothly as desirable. .

I could very easily justify my keeping JNU on top of my life by saying  it give a job fairly easier than I thought it would be and easier than many of my classmates got there or elsewhere. That is not the reason as I would have got a job elsewhere too, except in states like Tamil Nadu or Kerala where bribes make wonders in appointments.   Certainly I would not have offered bribes to the “concerned” to get a job. But I would have got a job in some university where bribes do not make a criterion for selection. Not only JNU gave me an initial job it also gave me an orientation necessary to face the educational world. However, the forces around me were so strong I could not survive the pull and push of them. Both communal and community troubles. I failed to detect scheming against me. I collapsed, unable to comprehend or control my own steps, my own destiny…. .

I admire JNU for its role in my life. I learned a lot from being I at JNU for many years, first as a student and research scholar and then as a s a teacher. Believe me it was at JNU that I realized that the world has got many good souls as well.

Most of the students at JNU as well as teachers were rich. With plenty of money in their pockets as regular expenditure sum, students just enjoy life, even begin to smoke, drink alcohol and use drugs because they are free from the parental control mechanisms. However, many students and even researchers very tactfully escape that awful route. I am one among them.

When I unambiguously declare JNU as my best teacher of life, by no means I say  other institutions with which I have been fortunate to be  associated with either as students/researcher or teacher.  Obviously I benefited greatly from my studies or service or both with institutions from primary school to university.

A little Girl’s primary school very close to my house in native town where I began my educational life with no family educational background and without enough books, food and proper clothing and then the VKP High School not far way of my house and later Laskhmirpuram College of Arts and Sciences which was 3 miles walking distance then – all gave me lessons on life I practiced after that at JNU. In fact, in JNU I was first recognized as a useful person.

I need to mention here that quite a lot of teachers from primary school right up to university were fond of me and really helped me come over difficulties. Some of them are warm people.  I prefer avoiding names here because the list would have been too long. Moreover, if I leave out a couple of teachers by chance – that is possible given a large number of teachers in my life –  that would be unfair on my part as injustice would be done to those persons. Let them all live in my heart even after I leave this world, finally forgetting all my tiny achievements and great disappointments….

Indian institutions like IGNOU, Mysore University, CIEFL (now EFLU), Uniferro International Limited did influence greatly my life. They made me human, helped me live with some sort of dignity. They honored me by degrees, diplomas, certificates, doctorates, etc. My education at the Pushkin Institute in Moscow had a deep impact on my perceptions of life.

In fact, not just conventional educational institutions that contributed to my swings in my life patterns. Sermons in Mosque, Church and other religious discourse also may have shaped my world views, although I may not have changed much in any sense of the term.

The surroundings, journeys, among other constructive studies could have improved my understanding of life and people. That is indeed highly impressive development. Recently I was listening to some film music and the lyric by poet Kannadasan impressed me much for his philosophical ideas that are conveyed in fine music tunes. I feel I am just nobody, or maybe a small fry in a very large ocean of talented people.

It is not how much successful I am in life at this point of time. But I am fully satisfied with my title life. Those who know my early school and college life would testify the pivotal importance of my grandmother in my life and without her I would not have gone beyond 7th class- seriously!

Fate has always been ruthless with me; it never allowed me to be a good human to others, to myself. .

____________________________

Threats of Asian Nukes for world peace!

Threats of Asian Nukes for world peace!

-Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal

__________________

 

  1. Weapons of mass destruction (WMD)

Nuclear weapons are the deadliest tool developed by nuclear powers to end human race and destroy all living beings on earth, do not target only select person in a crowd but annihilated masses in one go and hence they are known as weapons of mass destruction (WMD). However, nuclear powers have not taken the issue as seriously as it really merits.

Nuclear disarmament refers to both the act of reducing or eliminating nuclear weapons and to the end state of a nuclear-weapon-free world, in which nuclear weapons are completely eliminated. Nuclear disarmament groups include the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Greenpeace, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, Mayors for Peace, Global Zero, and the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. Proponents of nuclear disarmament say that it would lessen the probability of nuclear war occurring, especially accidentally. Critics of nuclear disarmament say that it would undermine deterrence.

In 1945 in the New Mexico desert, American scientists conducted “Trinity,” the first nuclear weapons test, marking the beginning of the atomic age. Even before the Trinity test, national leaders debated the impact of nuclear weapons on domestic and foreign policy. Also involved in the debate about nuclear weapons policy was the scientific community, through professional associations such as the Federation of Atomic Scientists and the Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs.

On August 6, 1945, towards the end of World War II, the Little Boy device was detonated over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. Exploding with a yield equivalent to 12,500 tonnes of TNT, the blast and thermal wave of the bomb destroyed nearly 50,000 buildings (including theheadquarters of the 2nd General Army and Fifth Division) and killed approximately 75,000 people, among them 20,000 Japanese soldiers and 20,000 Koreans. Detonation of the Fat Man device exploded over the Japanese city of Nagasaki three days later on 9 August 1945, destroying 60% of the city and killing approximately 35,000 people, among them 23,200-28,200 Japanese civilian munitions workers and 150 Japanese soldiers. Subsequently, the world’s nuclear weapons stockpiles grew.
Operation Crossroads was a series of nuclear weapon tests conducted by the United States at Bikini Atoll in the Pacific Ocean in the summer of 1946. Its purpose was to test the effect of nuclear weapons on naval ships
Radioactive fallout from nuclear weapons testing was first drawn to public attention in 1954 when a Hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific contaminated the crew of the Japanese fishing boat Lucky Dragon. One of the fishermen died in Japan seven months later. The incident caused widespread concern around the world and “provided a decisive impetus for the emergence of the anti-nuclear weapons movement in many countries”. The anti-nuclear weapons movement grew rapidly because for many people the atomic bomb “encapsulated the very worst direction in which society was moving”. Peace movements emerged in Japan and in 1954 they converged to form a unified “Japanese Council against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs”.

Only insane people can love deadly WMD. One can love Pakistan, India or China as their favorite nation for some specifically positive reasons except for the nukes they possess because loving or supporting their nukes qualifies them to be the enemies of humanity seeking peaceful environment. Jews all over the world can rejoice at the Israeli nuke arsenals obtained illegally without UN approval but the Jewish nukes are not less dangerous as many in USA seem to believe. Israel can destroy the world if it is not allowed to be an arrogantly fascist in Mideast.
Israel, a close ally of USA retains the exclusive right to own nukes illegally without having the obligation to report to the IAEA or UN and big powers, including declared nuclear powers doo not question Israeli nukes, threatening peace in West Asia. They remain monstrous threat to human civilization.
It is argued sometimes by nuclear powers that nuclear arsenals help maintaining peace and therefore they are graceful deterrence. They also argue conventional arms cause tensions between nations. Nuclear powers India and Pakistan in South Asia have sustained mutual hatred, mutual suspicions causing tensions and regular cross fires.

 

  1. Promotion of self-destruction by Asian WMD

The size and shape of the US nuclear arsenal has always been inherently tied to the defense of its Western European allies, with the Asia-Pacific as a secondary consideration. Relatively recent literature on the subject suggests that it is indeed allies that have always been a major hindrance in US-Russian nuclear arms-control negotiations.
Certainly there was constant debate about what constituted “stability” between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War, but there were a number of factors that could be applied to evaluating the degree of instability, leading to a nuclear exchange. These included arsenal size, readiness and alertness, MIRV numbers, survivability of forces, and megatonnage. These factors, in turn, would help analysts assess the strength of concepts such as deterrence, pre-emption, second-strike capability, escalation control, and escalation dominance which, in turn, would be used to assess “stability” between NATO and the Soviet Union.

Asia with large sections of hungry people without shelter is in danger. China as the exclusive veto power of Asian continent has freedom to blast and manufacture as many nukes as the red Army desires. India and Pakistan keep on adding more nukes for “peaceful purposes” when many people this largest democracy sleep on pavements and in leaking huts all over the country. In order not to lag behind India, Pakistan too is busy increasing its nuke arsenals, while more and more, and haplessly poor Pakistanis, also terrorized by NATO-Pak joint military attacks on them, continue to eat grass if allowed by the military. Rich Pakistanis, including Islamic media lords, however, enjoy life with cocktail parties in US embassy.
Chinese may love their nukes as much as Indians do the same but Pakistanis love nukes the most because its conventional arm arsenals are inferior to Indians and they would unhesitantly use nukes if India for any reason attacks it for a long war. Islamabad has made the point clear to India as a matter of caution if not warning. So far they fought only short wars and exchanged cross fires over the issue of Jammu Kashmir which both occupy along with China. Indian occupational strategy has been extra brutal.
Humanity in Asian continent should seriously consider the existential threat the nations of this continent face from the ever increasing nuke arsenals of China, India and Pakistan. Thank god Bangladesh is not in nuclear race with India or Pakistan, while Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Nepal do not have the resources for extensive nukes. Afghanistan, badly destabilized by NATO democracies in order to end Islamization process by successfully enacting Sept-11 hoax, has not time to think about nukes at all. Maldives is more worried than Sri Lanka about climate change that threatens its existence than nukes.
The Asian nuke powers – China, India, Israel and Pakistan – must be proud of their nukes and damn sure nothing would happen towards any credible denuclearization or disarmament and world powers are just making gimmicks by way of summits and talks. Arms reduction treaties are also not very encouraging. But people in these nuke enabled countries in South Asia region as well as Asian continent in general should be deeply concerned about the perpetual threat from nuclear arms they face in the neighborhoods.

Pakistan now has an arsenal of as many as 110-120 nuclear weapons and is expected to triple that in a decade, and an increase of that size makes no sense, especially since India’s nuclear arsenal, estimated at about the same 110-120 weapons, is growing more slowly.
Reports emanating from Washington and London say that Pakistan has got the world’s fastest-growing nuclear arsenal, and is unquestionably the biggest concern for Asia, especially in South Asia. Reports say Pakistan plans to purchase eight diesel-electric submarines from China, which could be equipped with nuclear missiles, and test-firing a ballistic missile that appears capable of carrying a nuclear warhead to any part of India. It noted that a senior adviser, Khalid Ahmed Kidwai, reaffirmed Pakistan’s determination to continue developing short-range tactical nuclear weapons whose only purpose is use on the battlefield in case of a war against India – the only country Islamabad fears. When India blasted its first bomb in Rajasthan, close to Pakistan, the ruling elite got panicky as Pakistanis were taken aback by the big explosion in India.
Advanced military equipment – new submarines, the medium-range Shaheen-III missile with a reported range of up to 1,700 miles, short-range tactical nuclear weapons – are of little use in defending against such threats. Even more troubling, the Pakistani Army has become increasingly dependent on the nuclear arsenal because Pakistan cannot match the size and sophistication of India’s conventional forces. But Pakistan is hardly alone in its potential to cause regional instability. China, which considers Pakistan a close ally and India a potential threat, is, according to estimates, continuing to build up its nuclear arsenal, now estimated at 250 weapons.
India, a corrupt but vibrant democracy, has focused so far on becoming a regional economic and political power. Achieving a nuclear free nation is the last thing New Delhi wants because India would not have got nukes in the first place had it not been its motto. In contrast, Pakistan, terrorized by occupation forces for the West and insurgency from within to drive the forces away from Islamabad, has sunk deeper into chaos, threatened by economic collapse, the weakening of political institutions and, most of all, a Taliban insurgency that aims to bring down the state. Islamabad also does not want to make Pakistan WMD free in the region and Asia at large, at least so long as India remains a nuclear power.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, like Indian media lords, thinks that the 2008 Mumbai attack was committed by Pakistanis who had come to India’s financial capital by a fishing boat , unnoticed by Indian Navy’s big high precision radar screens monitored by experts. Under pressure from USA and on duress from New Delhi which wants to increase cross border trade with Indian businessmen Pakistani government tired a few Muslims charging them with terror attack on Mumbai but recently one by one they are set free by the judiciary since they had nothing to with boat or Mumbai attack. However, Narendra Modi has made it clear that Pakistan can expect retaliation if “Islamic militants” carry out a terrorist attack in India, as happened with the 2008 bombing in Mumbai.
Compared to China’s expansionist tendencies today, the role of the Soviet Navy was primarily to defend coastline, and Moscow did not rely on the seas so much for trade as the United States did. But the focus has shifted, with nuclear strategy and conventional deterrence becoming much more important in the Asia-Pacific.

 

  1. Nuclear arms vs. conventional weapons

Nuclear path is very costly and dangerous. Increasing number of nukes is said to be a rationale that denies common people their legitimate share in terms of welfare measures and also allows the generals to maintain maximum power over the government and demand maximum national resources. Military intelligences maintain their control over policies so much that governments have to divert maximum money for military. No questions are asked in parliaments on the military expenditures, making military the super power of governments.
Nuclear reductions and disarmament are not necessarily smart ideas especially no nuclear power wants to rid of its nuke arsenals. Dependence on WMD made the conventional arms look primitive and their role unimportant. Even with the successful elimination of nuclear weapons, the tasks of strategy – deterrence, extended deterrence, and arms control – do not go away. Instead, they become even more difficult to manage. That is disturbing, given that Asia is now the center of global strategic gravity.

Given escalating tensions between the USA and Russia and China, nuclear disarmament will not happen any time soon. US President Barack Obama’s initial goals of further reducing the U.S. nuclear stockpile should force us to think very carefully about the desirability of relying on conventional military balances for deterrence, because a world with significantly fewer nuclear weapons would graphically expose conventional imbalances between states, which in many instances have remained partially hidden in the current nuclear age. It is upon these imbalances that any remaining system of deterrence would increasingly rely.
Historically, the South and East Asian regions, rather the wider Asia-Pacific, has been much less interested in arms control than Europe. Indeed, most arms control and disarmament policies (both conventional and nuclear) have been conceived and adopted by non-Asian countries. Arms control is desirable, and could help alleviate regional tensions, achieving agreement on limitations is fraught with difficulties linked to geography, defense spending, cross-cutting geopolitical interests, alliance dynamics, re-armament capabilities and the dual nature of evolving military technology.
The British did not like submarines, pointing to the indiscriminate destruction they had wrought in previous naval battles. Syria repeatedly stated that it would not agree to a Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone (WMDFZ) unless Israel renounced its air superiority. For Iran to agree, the U.S. would need to significantly reduce its presence in the region, and Israel would need to limit its offensive capabilities and its aggressive rhetoric. Indeed, Syria’s build-up of Scud-B and Scud-C missiles since 1974 was a direct response to Israel’s conventional superiority and Syria’s growing regional isolation. It was believed that, mated to chemical and biological warheads, some of these could provide a deterrent also to Israel’s use of nuclear weapons against Syrian territory.
Do the nuclear weapon states focus on reducing their nuclear arsenals as a precondition for conventional disarmament? It would be a good idea to reduce nuclear weapons before reducing conventional forces. However, the discourse by all the nuclear weapons states except the United States indicates that nuclear weapons are seen as but one component of the overall military balance between states.

Even the Cold War saw significant attempts at non-nuclear arms control, the most important of which was the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty. These initiatives were influenced by the nuclear forces of both the U.S. and USSR. Russia recently withdrew from the Treaty and threatened nuclear weapons against Denmark if it decided to host U.S. missile defenses. For Russia, NATO expansion was a means of bypassing the provisions of the Treaty.
Consider questions about the relationship between nuclear and conventional military power for arms control. Could the United States still continue to “extend” deterrence with conventional forces only? Any buildup of U.S. conventional forces in the Asia-Pacific region would surely be provocative for challengers (say China or Russia) to the current regional order.

Alliances were a major factor in the ultimate failure of the League of Nations that led to its exit and replacement by UN. In all its history up until the Second World War, the United States was a more or less isolationist power. It is also easy to take for granted just how impressive a feat it was for the United States to establish alliances with countries in Asia, for instance, half a world away. U.S. nuclear capabilities, and their long-range delivery systems, played an important part in that enterprise. Without the bomb, Washington might have had neither the appetite nor the audacity to undertake such vast and significant security commitments.

The efforts for total disarmament and denuclearization have failed owing to disconnect between USA and Russia , the nations with largest nuke arsenals, over issue while all nuclear powers have continued to manufacture more nukes even as readying with nuke enabled high precision intercontinental missiles.
The challenges of strategy, both on the road to nuclear “zero” and in a “disarmed” world, are significant. If one advocates for nuclear disarmament, then the responsible corollary task is to advocate for formal arms control agreements that benefit the greatest possible number of states in the international system; to create an alternative system of strategic stability. However, as my research on the historical record shows, international politics has thus far been incapable of yielding any enduring limitation on conventional military forces. Issues of conventional military power will re-emerge with new prominence and increase in danger, especially in the Asia-Pacific where the Asian tigers have not yet figured out how to share a mountain.
The issues of non-nuclear arms control might, in fact, make it even more difficult to assess and navigate the relative balance of power in international politics. Indeed, one of the biggest issues in the realm of conventional arms control is finding any agreed concept of equilibrium. Would the condition for the Chinese giving up their nuclear weapons be the complete withdrawal of US power projection capabilities from the region? Importantly, many issues illustrate the fact that proponents of arms control agreements (especially the NPT, the INF, and CFE Treaties) commit the mistake of assuming that the world can remain static, both geopolitically and militarily.
In January, Pope Francis touted nuclear disarmament as a major goal alongside climate change in his speech to the Vatican’s diplomatic corps and last year the Vatican submitted a paper calling for total nuclear disarmament to the Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons. However, unless the nuclear powers decide to dismantle their own arsenals first emerging nuclear nations won’t be assured of any nuke free world.
Pope could not lend his high office to repeat what Israel or USA says Iran and would do well by asking Israel to dismantle its WMD at the earliest so that world has at last some hopes for peace. Maybe, he should press the White House, responsible for Israel obtaining nukes illegally, to positively influence Tel Aviv to destroy its deadly nukes.
One more word: Arms control should be able to contribute to reduce the probability of war, and to minimize death and destruction if war comes. But world has not yet begun debating conventional arms control agreements so that credible talks could take place on denuclearization. Many Indians, who are worried about increasing nuke arsenals in India and Asia at large, however, sincerely want more nukes in Indian arsenal until USA and Russia disown their nuke arsenals first, paving way for credible disarmament and denuclearization.
On the way to formal arms control, great powers should be willing to drastically reduce their conventional forces so that denuclearization process becomes credible and serious. World leaders should now ensure that.

There is no alternative to disarmament and denuclearization in a step by step manner!

My favourite teacher: Random thoughts

My favourite teacher: Random thoughts

 – Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal

_____________________

 

Do people have favorite teachers?

I would rush to say that as a self made person I am my own teacher, favorite or otherwise, and I don’t wish to consider anybody else as my favourite teacher. That view would indeed be highly individualistic and in fact  a selfish approach to one’s own life. That amounts to negation of truth.

As a student I perhaps had many favorite teachers certainly more than one. But we small boys never discussed those issues. I looked upon teachers as very precious people born to help children like me.

You will agree with me that that is not a genuine understanding of one’s life. We have learned a lot of good and bad things from the society, from the people around and in the school itself.

Teachers from school to university help us with the proper and genuine development of our character.  This very crucial task of character building exercises cannot be done by our parents or friends because parents upbring children in their “colorful” ways so that their sweet children become big guys and important ladies, with or without genuine understanding of life that helps in them mould strong character.

It is likely at times that a few parents also try to mould the character and positive mindset of their children but very often than not they do not succeed and they invariably fail to train or make any lasting impact on their own children like what teachers do.

Unfortunately, the parents negatively influence their children because they do not have any genuine rapport and therefore keep quarreling, abuse one another, insult one another, thereby making their children feel insecure. This is because they lack the necessary parental aptitudes. At times by showering over-affection on the little children and refusing to punish their wrong doings, mistakes parents in fact spoil them in their early life itself. That is indeed harmful for the future of children. News reports let us know that some misguided parents force chidden to run away, to commit crimes, to commit suicide. That is cruel.

Even if one teacher is bad, misbehaves and negative in attitudes towards life and education and in relations with pupils, there are many teachers there to help the little children mold their character.

When I think of spotting my best or favourite teacher, frankly, I don’t get any particular teacher in the role, maybe because I am also a teacher trying to communicate with a large section of common people.

But believe me what comes to my mind quickly when such questions rise is entire my university life in New Delhi altogether that may have molded me into what I am, if at all,  capable of today.

Jawaharlal Nehru University, or in short JNU, remains my lifeline and that multidisciplinary institution by and large could be my favorite teacher if I have to concede. Conversely, had I not been a student and teacher of JNU perhaps, please trust me, I would have been different, may be a useless human being.

Generally speaking, plenty of officals in Indian Administrative Services, Foreign Services and Police Services belong to JNU. I keep JNU in high esteem not because of that. Of course, I am not unhappy that I am not one among them. Frankly, I am not as intelligent, hard working or studious as they are and so I can’t compare me with them. After getting enrolled for a master’s or research program at JNU they spent most of their time at JNU preparing for administrative services or trying to go abroad for higher studies or work.  I wonder if these hardworking youth focus on their studies for which they take admissions at JNU, possibly the quality of university education and research would have gone up considerably, taking JNU to the level of many high standard western institutions. But then India also needs good administrators to help central and state governments run the governance as smoothly as desirable. .

When I unambiguously declare JNU as my best teacher of life, by no means I say  other institutions with which I have been fortunate to be  associated with either as students/researcher or teacher.  Obviously I benefited greatly from my studies or service or both with institutions from primary school to university.

A little Girl’s primary school very close to my house where I began my educational life with no family educational background without enough books, food and proper clothing and then the VKP High School not far way of my house and later Laskhmirpuram College of Arts and Sciences which was 3 miles walking distance – all gave me lessons on life I practiced after that at JNU. In fact, in JNU I was first recognized as a useful person.

I need to mention here that quite a lot of teachers from primary school right up to university were fond of me and really helped me come over difficulties. Some of them are warm people.  I prefer avoiding names here because the list would have been too long.

Indian institutions like IGNOU, Mysore University, CIEFL (now EFLU), Uniferro International Limited did influence greatly my life. They made me human, helped me live with some sort of dignity. They honored me by degrees, diplomas, certificates, doctorates, etc. My education at the Pushkin Institute in Moscow had a deep impact on my perceptions of life.

In fact, not just conventional educational institutions that contributed to my swings in my life patterns. Sermons in Mosque, Church and other religious discourse also may have shaped my world views, although I may not have changed much in any sense of the term.

The surroundings, journeys, among other constructive studies could have improved my understanding of life and people. That is indeed highly impressive development. Recently I was listening to some film music and the lyric by poet Kannadasan impressed me much for his philosophical ideas that are conveyed in fine music tunes. I feel I am just nobody, or maybe a small fry in a very large ocean of talented people.

It is not how much successful I am in life at this point of time. But I am fully satisfied with my title life. Those who know my early school and college life would testify the pivotal importance of my grandmother in my life and without her I would not have gone beyond 7th class- seriously!

Fate has always been ruthless with me; it never allowed me to be a good human to others, to myself. .

____________________________

Nukes of China, India, Israel and Pakistan pose serious threat to Asia, world peace!

Nukes of China, India, Israel and Pakistan pose serious threat to Asia, world peace!

-Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal

__________________

 

  1. Weapons of mass destruction (WMD)

Nuclear weapons are the deadliest tool developed by nuclear powers to end human race and destroy all living beings on earth, do not target only select person in a crowd but annihilated masses in one go and hence they are known as weapons of mass destruction (WMD). However, nuclear powers have not taken the issue as seriously as it really merits.

Nuclear disarmament refers to both the act of reducing or eliminating nuclear weapons and to the end state of a nuclear-weapon-free world, in which nuclear weapons are completely eliminated. Nuclear disarmament groups include the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Greenpeace, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, Mayors for Peace, Global Zero, and the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. Proponents of nuclear disarmament say that it would lessen the probability of nuclear war occurring, especially accidentally. Critics of nuclear disarmament say that it would undermine deterrence.

In 1945 in the New Mexico desert, American scientists conducted “Trinity,” the first nuclear weapons test, marking the beginning of the atomic age. Even before the Trinity test, national leaders debated the impact of nuclear weapons on domestic and foreign policy. Also involved in the debate about nuclear weapons policy was the scientific community, through professional associations such as the Federation of Atomic Scientists and the Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs.

On August 6, 1945, towards the end of World War II, the Little Boy device was detonated over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. Exploding with a yield equivalent to 12,500 tonnes of TNT, the blast and thermal wave of the bomb destroyed nearly 50,000 buildings (including theheadquarters of the 2nd General Army and Fifth Division) and killed approximately 75,000 people, among them 20,000 Japanese soldiers and 20,000 Koreans. Detonation of the Fat Man device exploded over the Japanese city of Nagasaki three days later on 9 August 1945, destroying 60% of the city and killing approximately 35,000 people, among them 23,200-28,200 Japanese civilian munitions workers and 150 Japanese soldiers. Subsequently, the world’s nuclear weapons stockpiles grew.
Operation Crossroads was a series of nuclear weapon tests conducted by the United States at Bikini Atoll in the Pacific Ocean in the summer of 1946. Its purpose was to test the effect of nuclear weapons on naval ships
Radioactive fallout from nuclear weapons testing was first drawn to public attention in 1954 when a Hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific contaminated the crew of the Japanese fishing boat Lucky Dragon. One of the fishermen died in Japan seven months later. The incident caused widespread concern around the world and “provided a decisive impetus for the emergence of the anti-nuclear weapons movement in many countries”. The anti-nuclear weapons movement grew rapidly because for many people the atomic bomb “encapsulated the very worst direction in which society was moving”. Peace movements emerged in Japan and in 1954 they converged to form a unified “Japanese Council against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs”.

Only insane people can love deadly WMD. One can love Pakistan, India or China as their favorite nation for some specifically positive reasons except for the nukes they possess because loving or supporting their nukes qualifies them to be the enemies of humanity seeking peaceful environment. Jews all over the world can rejoice at the Israeli nuke arsenals obtained illegally without UN approval but the Jewish nukes are not less dangerous as many in USA seem to believe. Israel can destroy the world if it is not allowed to be an arrogantly fascist in Mideast.
Israel, a close ally of USA retains the exclusive right to own nukes illegally without having the obligation to report to the IAEA or UN and big powers, including declared nuclear powers doo not question Israeli nukes, threatening peace in West Asia. They remain monstrous threat to human civilization.
It is argued sometimes by nuclear powers that nuclear arsenals help maintaining peace and therefore they are graceful deterrence. They also argue conventional arms cause tensions between nations. Nuclear powers India and Pakistan in South Asia have sustained mutual hatred, mutual suspicions causing tensions and regular cross fires.

 

  1. Promotion of self-destruction by Asian WMD

The size and shape of the US nuclear arsenal has always been inherently tied to the defense of its Western European allies, with the Asia-Pacific as a secondary consideration. Relatively recent literature on the subject suggests that it is indeed allies that have always been a major hindrance in US-Russian nuclear arms-control negotiations.
Certainly there was constant debate about what constituted “stability” between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War, but there were a number of factors that could be applied to evaluating the degree of instability, leading to a nuclear exchange. These included arsenal size, readiness and alertness, MIRV numbers, survivability of forces, and megatonnage. These factors, in turn, would help analysts assess the strength of concepts such as deterrence, pre-emption, second-strike capability, escalation control, and escalation dominance which, in turn, would be used to assess “stability” between NATO and the Soviet Union.

Asia with large sections of hungry people without shelter is in danger. China as the exclusive veto power of Asian continent has freedom to blast and manufacture as many nukes as the red Army desires. India and Pakistan keep on adding more nukes for “peaceful purposes” when many people this largest democracy sleep on pavements and in leaking huts all over the country. In order not to lag behind India, Pakistan too is busy increasing its nuke arsenals, while more and more, and haplessly poor Pakistanis, also terrorized by NATO-Pak joint military attacks on them, continue to eat grass if allowed by the military. Rich Pakistanis, including Islamic media lords, however, enjoy life with cocktail parties in US embassy.
Chinese may love their nukes as much as Indians do the same but Pakistanis love nukes the most because its conventional arm arsenals are inferior to Indians and they would unhesitantly use nukes if India for any reason attacks it for a long war. Islamabad has made the point clear to India as a matter of caution if not warning. So far they fought only short wars and exchanged cross fires over the issue of Jammu Kashmir which both occupy along with China. Indian occupational strategy has been extra brutal.
Humanity in Asian continent should seriously consider the existential threat the nations of this continent face from the ever increasing nuke arsenals of China, India and Pakistan. Thank god Bangladesh is not in nuclear race with India or Pakistan, while Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Nepal do not have the resources for extensive nukes. Afghanistan, badly destabilized by NATO democracies in order to end Islamization process by successfully enacting Sept-11 hoax, has not time to think about nukes at all. Maldives is more worried than Sri Lanka about climate change that threatens its existence than nukes.
The Asian nuke powers – China, India, Israel and Pakistan – must be proud of their nukes and damn sure nothing would happen towards any credible denuclearization or disarmament and world powers are just making gimmicks by way of summits and talks. Arms reduction treaties are also not very encouraging. But people in these nuke enabled countries in South Asia region as well as Asian continent in general should be deeply concerned about the perpetual threat from nuclear arms they face in the neighborhoods.

Pakistan now has an arsenal of as many as 110-120 nuclear weapons and is expected to triple that in a decade, and an increase of that size makes no sense, especially since India’s nuclear arsenal, estimated at about the same 110-120 weapons, is growing more slowly.
Reports emanating from Washington and London say that Pakistan has got the world’s fastest-growing nuclear arsenal, and is unquestionably the biggest concern for Asia, especially in South Asia. Reports say Pakistan plans to purchase eight diesel-electric submarines from China, which could be equipped with nuclear missiles, and test-firing a ballistic missile that appears capable of carrying a nuclear warhead to any part of India. It noted that a senior adviser, Khalid Ahmed Kidwai, reaffirmed Pakistan’s determination to continue developing short-range tactical nuclear weapons whose only purpose is use on the battlefield in case of a war against India – the only country Islamabad fears. When India blasted its first bomb in Rajasthan, close to Pakistan, the ruling elite got panicky as Pakistanis were taken aback by the big explosion in India.
Advanced military equipment – new submarines, the medium-range Shaheen-III missile with a reported range of up to 1,700 miles, short-range tactical nuclear weapons – are of little use in defending against such threats. Even more troubling, the Pakistani Army has become increasingly dependent on the nuclear arsenal because Pakistan cannot match the size and sophistication of India’s conventional forces. But Pakistan is hardly alone in its potential to cause regional instability. China, which considers Pakistan a close ally and India a potential threat, is, according to estimates, continuing to build up its nuclear arsenal, now estimated at 250 weapons.
India, a corrupt but vibrant democracy, has focused so far on becoming a regional economic and political power. Achieving a nuclear free nation is the last thing New Delhi wants because India would not have got nukes in the first place had it not been its motto. In contrast, Pakistan, terrorized by occupation forces for the West and insurgency from within to drive the forces away from Islamabad, has sunk deeper into chaos, threatened by economic collapse, the weakening of political institutions and, most of all, a Taliban insurgency that aims to bring down the state. Islamabad also does not want to make Pakistan WMD free in the region and Asia at large, at least so long as India remains a nuclear power.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, like Indian media lords, thinks that the 2008 Mumbai attack was committed by Pakistanis who had come to India’s financial capital by a fishing boat , unnoticed by Indian Navy’s big high precision radar screens monitored by experts. Under pressure from USA and on duress from New Delhi which wants to increase cross border trade with Indian businessmen Pakistani government tired a few Muslims charging them with terror attack on Mumbai but recently one by one they are set free by the judiciary since they had nothing to with boat or Mumbai attack. However, Narendra Modi has made it clear that Pakistan can expect retaliation if “Islamic militants” carry out a terrorist attack in India, as happened with the 2008 bombing in Mumbai.
Compared to China’s expansionist tendencies today, the role of the Soviet Navy was primarily to defend coastline, and Moscow did not rely on the seas so much for trade as the United States did. But the focus has shifted, with nuclear strategy and conventional deterrence becoming much more important in the Asia-Pacific.

 

  1. Nuclear arms vs. conventional weapons

Nuclear path is very costly and dangerous. Increasing number of nukes is said to be a rationale that denies common people their legitimate share in terms of welfare measures and also allows the generals to maintain maximum power over the government and demand maximum national resources. Military intelligences maintain their control over policies so much that governments have to divert maximum money for military. No questions are asked in parliaments on the military expenditures, making military the super power of governments.
Nuclear reductions and disarmament are not necessarily smart ideas especially no nuclear power wants to rid of its nuke arsenals. Dependence on WMD made the conventional arms look primitive and their role unimportant. Even with the successful elimination of nuclear weapons, the tasks of strategy – deterrence, extended deterrence, and arms control – do not go away. Instead, they become even more difficult to manage. That is disturbing, given that Asia is now the center of global strategic gravity.

Given escalating tensions between the USA and Russia and China, nuclear disarmament will not happen any time soon. US President Barack Obama’s initial goals of further reducing the U.S. nuclear stockpile should force us to think very carefully about the desirability of relying on conventional military balances for deterrence, because a world with significantly fewer nuclear weapons would graphically expose conventional imbalances between states, which in many instances have remained partially hidden in the current nuclear age. It is upon these imbalances that any remaining system of deterrence would increasingly rely.
Historically, the South and East Asian regions, rather the wider Asia-Pacific, has been much less interested in arms control than Europe. Indeed, most arms control and disarmament policies (both conventional and nuclear) have been conceived and adopted by non-Asian countries. Arms control is desirable, and could help alleviate regional tensions, achieving agreement on limitations is fraught with difficulties linked to geography, defense spending, cross-cutting geopolitical interests, alliance dynamics, re-armament capabilities and the dual nature of evolving military technology.
The British did not like submarines, pointing to the indiscriminate destruction they had wrought in previous naval battles. Syria repeatedly stated that it would not agree to a Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone (WMDFZ) unless Israel renounced its air superiority. For Iran to agree, the U.S. would need to significantly reduce its presence in the region, and Israel would need to limit its offensive capabilities and its aggressive rhetoric. Indeed, Syria’s build-up of Scud-B and Scud-C missiles since 1974 was a direct response to Israel’s conventional superiority and Syria’s growing regional isolation. It was believed that, mated to chemical and biological warheads, some of these could provide a deterrent also to Israel’s use of nuclear weapons against Syrian territory.
Do the nuclear weapon states focus on reducing their nuclear arsenals as a precondition for conventional disarmament? It would be a good idea to reduce nuclear weapons before reducing conventional forces. However, the discourse by all the nuclear weapons states except the United States indicates that nuclear weapons are seen as but one component of the overall military balance between states.

Even the Cold War saw significant attempts at non-nuclear arms control, the most important of which was the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty. These initiatives were influenced by the nuclear forces of both the U.S. and USSR. Russia recently withdrew from the Treaty and threatened nuclear weapons against Denmark if it decided to host U.S. missile defenses. For Russia, NATO expansion was a means of bypassing the provisions of the Treaty.
Consider questions about the relationship between nuclear and conventional military power for arms control. Could the United States still continue to “extend” deterrence with conventional forces only? Any buildup of U.S. conventional forces in the Asia-Pacific region would surely be provocative for challengers (say China or Russia) to the current regional order.

Alliances were a major factor in the ultimate failure of the League of Nations that led to its exit and replacement by UN. In all its history up until the Second World War, the United States was a more or less isolationist power. It is also easy to take for granted just how impressive a feat it was for the United States to establish alliances with countries in Asia, for instance, half a world away. U.S. nuclear capabilities, and their long-range delivery systems, played an important part in that enterprise. Without the bomb, Washington might have had neither the appetite nor the audacity to undertake such vast and significant security commitments.

The efforts for total disarmament and denuclearization have failed owing to disconnect between USA and Russia , the nations with largest nuke arsenals, over issue while all nuclear powers have continued to manufacture more nukes even as readying with nuke enabled high precision intercontinental missiles.
The challenges of strategy, both on the road to nuclear “zero” and in a “disarmed” world, are significant. If one advocates for nuclear disarmament, then the responsible corollary task is to advocate for formal arms control agreements that benefit the greatest possible number of states in the international system; to create an alternative system of strategic stability. However, as my research on the historical record shows, international politics has thus far been incapable of yielding any enduring limitation on conventional military forces. Issues of conventional military power will re-emerge with new prominence and increase in danger, especially in the Asia-Pacific where the Asian tigers have not yet figured out how to share a mountain.
The issues of non-nuclear arms control might, in fact, make it even more difficult to assess and navigate the relative balance of power in international politics. Indeed, one of the biggest issues in the realm of conventional arms control is finding any agreed concept of equilibrium. Would the condition for the Chinese giving up their nuclear weapons be the complete withdrawal of US power projection capabilities from the region? Importantly, many issues illustrate the fact that proponents of arms control agreements (especially the NPT, the INF, and CFE Treaties) commit the mistake of assuming that the world can remain static, both geopolitically and militarily.
In January, Pope Francis touted nuclear disarmament as a major goal alongside climate change in his speech to the Vatican’s diplomatic corps and last year the Vatican submitted a paper calling for total nuclear disarmament to the Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons. However, unless the nuclear powers decide to dismantle their own arsenals first emerging nuclear nations won’t be assured of any nuke free world.
Pope could not lend his high office to repeat what Israel or USA says Iran and would do well by asking Israel to dismantle its WMD at the earliest so that world has at last some hopes for peace. Maybe, he should press the White House, responsible for Israel obtaining nukes illegally, to positively influence Tel Aviv to destroy its deadly nukes.
One more word: Arms control should be able to contribute to reduce the probability of war, and to minimize death and destruction if war comes. But world has not yet begun debating conventional arms control agreements so that credible talks could take place on denuclearization. Many Indians, who are worried about increasing nuke arsenals in India and Asia at large, however, sincerely want more nukes in Indian arsenal until USA and Russia disown their nuke arsenals first, paving way for credible disarmament and denuclearization.
On the way to formal arms control, great powers should be willing to drastically reduce their conventional forces so that denuclearization process becomes credible and serious. World leaders should now ensure that.

There is no alternative to disarmament and denuclearization in a step by step manner!

Comprehending Narendra Modi’s Shuttle Diplomacy!

Comprehending Narendra Modi’s Shuttle Diplomacy!

-Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal

___________________

  1. Congress policy and BJP technique

 

Obviously, the key foreign policy goal of India as an important  third world nation has for years been to retain at any cost neighboring Jammu Kashmir being occupied by Indian military forces since 1947 against the will of Kashmiris in Kashmir valley and aided by special laws; and of late, get an indefinite veto handle on discredited UNSC to control world along with big powers and new Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi with a hefty mandate has begun his innings at the crease by undertaking a series of steps necessary for increasing the chances for a veto which many in New Delhi consider as unnecessary an illusion.

As the Hindutva BJP pursues the Congress party policies of politics and economics, PM Modi also pursues India’s new veto diplomacy in a sustained manner just like predecessor, an innocent looking Dr. Manmohan Singh; Singh also promoted rampant corruption for the purpose, oiling the international palms to get continued international support for Indian occupation of Jammu Kashmir and for obtaining much maligned veto that has helped Israeli fascism  in Mideast and ruthlessly crushed Palestinians on the discredited UNSC..

With Hindutva BJP ruling India and the BJP directly guiding the Mufti-BJP government in Jammu Kashmir, India can very easily control Kashmir issue.

While India doesn’t face any serious threat to its occupation of Kashmir thanks to support it has managed from world powers, but the veto issue has remained elusive and seems to be an impossible task at hand.

Dreaming very high, India believes nothing is wrong in trying all types of diplomacy for the veto handle all over again and again, although recently Indian ambassador in UN burst into annoyance saying India cannot wait endlessly for a veto.

Narendra Modi’s visits to Indian Ocean nations saw New Delhi expanding its existing maritime cooperation framework with Sri Lanka and the Maldives to include Mauritius and Seychelles. The three nation tour on the Indian Ocean Modi used in consolidating New Delhi’s hold over the region. The idea was to show to big powers that India is the tallest leader of South, deserving a veto seat on UNSC to share global control mechanism.  However, USA was not impressed with India parading the rulers of South Asia for his inaugural ceremony last year.

Upon satisfactorily controlling Kashmir crisis, India has been passive in regional activities until recently, except in Afghanistan where it fights a cold war with Pakistan over its role in the new scenario in that destabilized  nation bordering Pakistan.  PM Modi used his first ever shuttle trip in order to advance Indian strategic partnership with regional ocean governments in deepening security cooperation, revitalizing the economic partnership, and advancing critical clean energy and environmental goals.

  1. India and South Asian near-abroad

For India, losing South Asia would also mean losing a possible UN veto. Indian PM Narendra Modi’s four minus one nation South Asia tour, therefore, was essentially meant to reclaim its place in the region.

Shuttle diplomacy now being preferred by Indian PM Modi is the hallmark of US president’s international politics. Only time will tell if he achieves anything tangible from his present active diplomatic discourses.

Narendra Modi has been pursuing multi-prong approach in Indian policy of courting neighbors as well as western powers. Soon after his assuming office, Modi began his diplomatic exercise by quickly visiting Bhutan and Nepal in the Himalayas. In order to present economically and politically vibrant India the undisputed leader in South Asia, PM Modi had invited all leaders of SAARC nations for inaugural ceremony in New Delhi. This is the first stage of Modi’s active diplomacy.

The second level diplomacy as part of the veto dream is to tour South Asia and strike economic deals and drive the regional nations away from Chinese courting. That would make Americans happy although China remains largest lender of money to Washington.

The objective behind undertaking Indian Ocean tour of Prime Minister Modi is to consolidate New Delhi’s strategic position in the region where China wants to make its presence felt through maritime silk route strategy. He sought to woo smaller Indian Ocean states away from increasing Chinese influence but he stressed that India’s neighbors should be the first beneficiaries of India’s economic progress.

Modi undertook visits to Sri Lanka, Mauritius and Seychelles from the second week of March, leaving out Maldives. Ostensibly, this move aims at strengthening New Delhi’s diplomatic and strategic engagement with Indian Ocean countries, but in reality it is taken to checkmate China’s influence in the region on behalf of USA. For this, seeds were sown a few years ago when Indian Ocean security grouping (IO-5) was formed by including Sri Lanka, Maldives, Mauritius and Seychelles in it. China in recent years heavily funded infrastructure development projects in these countries, making India apprehensive because it perceives the region to be its traditional territory of influence.

Seychelles, together with the navies of 16 other countries, is a part of India’s ‘Exercise Milan’ held annually in the Indian Ocean and the Asia-Pacific region. India and Seychelles (which comprises a group of 115 small islands totaling an area of 455 sq km) are partners in the blue economy, which envisages tapping of oceanic resources in the Seychelles’ vast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). The visit was high on symbolism as the two nations are likely to sign a slew of agreements on science, education and health. India may also announce financial assistance for this strategically valuable country.

India handed over the first offshore petrol vessel to Mauritius in December 2014. New Delhi wants closer maritime cooperation from Mauritius, the country which annually sends dozens of cadets for training in India. During Modi’s visit, cooperation between Indian Navy and Mauritian Coast Guard was high on the agenda of the dialogue. There were talks over Agalega islands, which have been much sought after by Indian armed forces. They want to use North Agalega Island to service manned and unmanned reconnaissance aircraft. To improve its air surveillance capabilities in the Indian Ocean region, New Delhi has been persuading Mauritius to hand over on lease both North and South Agalega islands, which are located closer to India than Mauritius.

He avoided visiting the Maldives, which has a pro-China administration and where a supposedly pro-India opposition leader is being tried for terrorism. Modi visited Seychelles and Mauritius before Sri Lanka on his tour of Indian Ocean states. On 15 March, he was expected to land at Male, the capital of Maldives. But this plan changed in the last minute as political situation in this country remained tensed as ex-Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed’s arrest under terrorism charges kicked up a political storm in the country. India has raised concern over the development. Maldivian opposition leaders requested Modi to cancel the first ever prime ministerial visit to the island country.

It seems India had warned the Maldives with cancellation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the Indian Ocean nation in the second week of March, unless it ensured a fair trial for former President Mohammed Nasheed, arrested amid a crisis that has caught New Delhi off guard. At the time the Maldives government was preparing to arrest Nasheed the principal Opposition leader in the Maldives, the Indian high commission in Male was hosting a poolside “Bollywood Night” with dancers jiving to popular Hindi film songs. Nasheed has long alleged a witch hunt by the government led by Yameen, cousin of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom who ruled the nation for close to three decades before the introduction of democracy. Yameen, who had after coming to power in late 2013 promised strong ties with India, has in recent months been wooing China too. Nasheed’s arrest has precipitated Modi’s biggest diplomatic trial as Prime Minister yet from India’s smaller but strategically critical neighbours. Modi had mocked the previous UPA government for allowing the Maldives to pose a challenge to India.

PM Modi visited India’s sea neighbor Sri Lanka to patch up ties and shore up support for his job at hand. Sri Lanka’s new government has recently suspended the Chinese-funded $1.5 billion Colombo Port City project, citing environmental issues and alleged corruption. It was inaugurated in September during a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who included Sri Lanka in a new maritime “Silk Road” linking the energy-rich Persian Gulf with China. BJP ruling India was considered as one overarching positive trend driving the energy and optimism across South Asia. The defeat of Sri Lankan strong mean Rajapaksha by his own minister Sirisena in the presidential poll had a lot Indian fresh air.

Modi became the first Indian leader to visit Sri Lanka in 28 years, reciprocating the trip to India last month by Sri Lanka’s new president. Modi since his election last May has emphasized rally his SAARC neighbors. Modi visited Northern and Eastern regions of the country to see India-funded projects, including 500-MW thermal power plant being built by NTPC in collaboration with Sri Lanka’s Ceylon Electricity Board in Trincomalee. Modi also unveiled highway and railway projects there. India also announced a fresh financial package for the island nation, which has sought New Delhi’s assistance in the health sector too.

Modi held bilateral talks with Sri Lanka’s new President Maithripala Sirisena, who seems to have made a departure from policies favoring Beijing and toward ethnic reconciliation with his country’s Tamil minority, a sensitive issue in India-Sri Lanka relations. Modi said India has committed $1.6 billion in development assistance for Sri Lanka, promising to continue the development partnership.

The BJP’s and Indian government’s criticism had sharpened when the Maldives government cancelled a 25-year contract to Bangalore infrastructure firm GMR to build an international airport in Male, and then when Nasheed took asylum at the Indian high commission there. Now, with the Maldives in the throes of a domestic political crisis, the Modi government may need to recalibrate its strategy for the region. Despite a series of warnings over the past two months, India did not expect the Yameen government to actually arrest Nasheed and trigger a face-off with the supporters of the MDP, the island’s largest political party.

Those trips were planned to stamp Modi’s emphasis on India’s tinier island neighbours to the south, aggressively wooed by China as part of President Xi Jinping’s “Maritime Silk Route” project to build a new marine route dominated by Beijing. India would like to show to the world that the resurgence of India was evidenced by the vibrant but corrupt elections last year that saw emergence of BJP as the strongest party in India and the ouster of the senior most corrupt Congress led UPA government. However, that optimism of Indian strategists disappeared very soon as the ruling BJP lost in Kashmir, Delhi and elsewhere. The effort to equalize BJP with India failed. India claims to be the sole leader of South Asia and claimed a veto seat but world powers did not take the claim seriously.

Sri Lanka is the last leg of Modi’s tour of the region, PM Modi has already visited a friendly Bhutan and a distancing Nepal. Started with safe Bhutan and Nepal, Modi has ended his South Asia tour in Sri Lanka while he has so far left out Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Maldives – all Muslims countries that New Delhi considers problematic.

  1. Appeasing Asian super power Beijing

Asian giant China with which India has territorial disputes vehemently opposes permanent induction of India into UNSC to enable it to be a real strategic partner of big powers. India has realized it needs a veto member China not just for cross border trade and services but also for advancing its veto dream.

In fact, India has been trying to shore up support of all veto members and other major power for its veto position but China has bluntly opposed India from being on UNSC as a permanent member.  India therefore has begun to cultivate good neighborly relations with China with which it has many issues to be sorted out, including territorial.

Recently, contours of India’s countermeasure against Beijing’s influence in the region got reflected when New Delhi and Colombo signed civil nuclear cooperation agreement during Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena’s four-day visit. The two countries also decided to expand defence and security cooperation between them.

India does not want to give leeway to China in Maldives where Beijing is developing the Ihavandoo and Maarandhoo islands. At Hanimaadhoo, it wants to establish second international airport. It also plans to set up a naval submarine base in Marao.  The naval base issue was raised with the Maldivian authorities during Chinese defence minister Chang Wanguan’s visit in November 2014 close on the heels of the Chinese President’s visit in September. New Delhi believes that the current dispensation in Male, like Sri Lanka’s former President Mahinda Rajapakse, is trying to use ongoing rivalry between India and China to its benefit. Aware of this fact, New Delhi is not in a mood to lose its grip on the Maldives. This is the reason it wanted Modi to visit Maldives.

New Delhi’s move is apparently intended to checkmate China’s growing strategic footprints in the Indian Ocean region. Modi is likely to visit Mauritius, Sri Lanka, Seychelles and the Maldives in the second week of March. However, a visit to the Maldives now appears to be a bit uncertain in the wake of volatile political situation in the island nation following arrest of former president Mohamed Nasheed, the Deccan Herald report further said.

Modi’s China visit in May is likely to be one of his toughest foreign policy assignments in the first year of his tenure as PM? A successful Indian Ocean tour with a focus on increasing security and military cooperation with the smaller island neighbours will help Modi negotiate with the Chinese from a position of strength.  In September 2014, when Chinese President Xi Jinping landed in India for a three-day visit he had already visited Maldives and Sri Lanka – both strategically sensitive nations in the Indian Ocean region. From Male and Colombo, he had secured cooperation for his country’s much vaunted maritime silk route plan. He had also announced Beijing’s plans to intensify defence and maritime engagement with Maldives and Sri Lanka. Such moves were looked upon by India with concern.

Ahead of PM Narendra Modi’s visit to China in May, the government’s Indian Ocean gambit is gathering momentum like it has never before. India has hardly merited consideration until now as a serious player in the maritime great game but that could all be changing with the government lining successive engagements with its neighbours spread across the Indian Ocean region.

Despite India’s reservations over China’s maritime Silk Road project, which entails port-building activities at several places in Indian Ocean, most of these countries India is reaching out to have accepted the Chinese proposal for economic benefits and equally to increase their bargaining power with geographically nearer New Delhi.  India continues to nurse deep insecurities about the project, an initiative of President Xi Jinping.

New Delhi is actually working to blunt the force of China’s proposal by choosing to highlight its own maritime history, including India’s central role in what it calls spice and mausam routes. The government has looked to impart a strategic content to the culture ministry’s Project Mausam, a transnational initiative meant to revive India’s ancient maritime routes and cultural linkages with countries in the Indian Ocean.

 

  1. India’s American dream

Needless to state that as USA remains the epicenter of western world, Indian focus today on the western powers has grown rapidly for various reasons and India, like Israel, thinks if USA could be brought on board, it can get everything it wants from  thWest and elsewhere. .

Focused on international issues like a seat on the discredited UNSC, PM Modi has been, however, focusing on USA and other western nations. India considers South Asia a play field space to work for advancing major objectives send messages to USA. Modi has visited Washington and met US president Barack Obama on the sidelines of a UN meet and discussed India’s problems and concerns. .

The third stage diplomacy of PM Modi began in USA as part of wooing western powers regarding the veto and American connection indeed matters a lot for New Delhi. Modi had gone to Washington to invite US president to attend Indian Repulbic Day celebrations in January and an innocent looking Obama did oblige PM Modi, he came to New Delhi to meet his “‘friend”.  Obama came to India with a large bunch of US businessmen to strike deals with their Indian counterparts.

India however could not manage a hint from Obama about India’s fate about a veto on the discredited UNSC. As usual the US president did not offer any assurance. However, India achieved one objective: Obama did not even mention about the disputed Kashmir issue but focused on the parade and business.

USA claims to be the net providers of security, together ensuring freedom of navigation and safeguarding the maritime domain. These values are clearly enshrined in two new documents: Joint Strategic Vision for the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean Region and the Delhi Declaration of Friendship.

India and USA reached agreement with India to strengthen the India-US partnership on economy, human rights and governance fronts. They seek to elevate the commercial and economic partnership as part of the Strategic and Commercial Dialogue to advance “shared prosperity”. Washington also said the new Indian government had energized the bilateral ties and the two countries were now essential partners in promoting peace, prosperity, and stability across the Indo-Pacific region. By leveraging the private sector and Indian resources, the USA has been getting sizable outcomes out of small inputs.

As India believes insistence would achieve the goal of veto, Americans are skeptical about Indian ability to analyze issues to know that a new veto membership on UNSC, if at all, would go to Germany which has been in wafting or Japan or North Korea or any other nation that shares US values.  It is not cricket that India by virtue of its IPL expenditures could get a series win along with man of match position win by various means including prior fixing or get favorable schedules, but veto is not given just because somebody keeps pestering.

A message New Delhi is seeking to convey is that it is possible for giant nations to have peaceful, mutually beneficial relations with their maritime neighbours. Unlike the case with China, India’s relations with its neighbours across vast bodies of water are not marred by maritime disputes.

The strategic partnership with USA has not solved all its problems, not even in nuclear sector and many Indian sources murmur that India is wasting its resources on USA for nothing in return while Pakistan gets huge sums from Washington as service charges. And Modi’s next journey is towards the Great Wall in the neighborhood followed by Canada, France, and Germany in April. This shuttle diplomacy is supposed to auger well for advancing India’s national interest.

Like Congress party, BJP also has done everything possible to retain Kashmir and to apply pressure on USA for strategic partnership that would also work against Pakistan and China.

One does not know if the rulers of western powers would hesitate to shake hands with blood stained hands of PM Modi, former chief minister of Gujarat state in West India – but the fact that his palms are stained with Indian Muslim blood could make them all feel cool.

Every ruler of India, irrespective of the party color and program, tried to come closer to Washington but closed the chapter heavy hearts, rather disillusioned.

Modi, trying to get investments and nuclear elements,  knows all that.

________________

My favourite teacher: Random thoughts

My favourite teacher: Random thoughts.

Comprehending Indian Premier Narendra Modi’s Foreign Diplomacy!

Comprehending Indian Premier Narendra Modi’s Foreign Diplomacy!

-Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal

___________________

Obviously, the key foreign policy goal of India has for years been to retain neighboring Jammu Kashmir being occupied by Indian military forces since 1947 aided by special laws and, of late, get an indefinite veto handle on discredited UNSC to control world along with big powers and new Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has begun his innings at the crease by undertaking a series of steps necessary for increasing the chances for a veto which many in New Delhi consider as unnecessary an illusion.

As the Hindutva BJP pursues the Congress party policies of politics and economics, PM Modi also pursues India’s new veto diplomacy in a sustained manner just like predecessor, an innocent looking Dr. Manmohan Singh; Singh also promoted rampant corruption for the purpose, oiling the international palms to get continued international support for Indian occupation of Jammu Kashmir and for obtaining much maligned veto that has helped Israeli fascism  in Mideast and ruthlessly crushed Palestinians on the discredited UNSC..

Dreaming very high, India believes nothing is wrong in trying all types of diplomacy for the veto handle all over again and again, although recently Indian ambassador in UN burst into annoyance saying India cannot wait endlessly for a veto.

Narendra Modi has been pursuing multi-prong approach in Indian policy of courting neighbors as well as western powers. Soon after his assuming office, Modi began his diplomatic exercise by quickly visiting Bhutan and Nepal in the Himalayas. In order to present economically and politically vibrant India the undisputed leader in South Asia, PM Modi had invited all leaders of SAARC nations for inaugural ceremony in New Delhi. This is the first stage of Modi’s active diplomacy.

Narendra Modi’s visits to Indian Ocean nations saw New Delhi expanding its existing maritime cooperation framework with Sri Lanka and the Maldives to include Mauritius and Seychelles. The three nation tour on the Indian Ocean Modi used in consolidating New Delhi’s hold over the region. The idea was to show to big powers that India is the tallest leader of South, deserving a veto seat on UNSC to share global control mechanism.  However, USA was not impressed with India parading the rulers of South Asia for his inaugural ceremony last year.

Upon satisfactorily controlling Kashmir crisis, India has been passive in regional activities until recently, except in Afghanistan where it fights a cold war with Pakistan over its role in the new scenario in that destabilized  nation bordering Pakistan.  PM Modi used his first ever shuttle trip in order to advance Indian strategic partnership with regional ocean governments in deepening security cooperation, revitalizing the economic partnership, and advancing critical clean energy and environmental goals.

I

For India, losing South Asia would also mean losing a possible UN veto. Indian PM Narendra Modi’s four minus one nation South Asia tour, therefore, was essentially meant to reclaim its place in the region.

The second level diplomacy as part of the veto dream is to tour South Asia and strike economic deals and drive the regional nations away from Chinese courting. That would make Americans happy although China remains largest lender of money to Washington.

The objective behind undertaking Indian Ocean tour of Prime Minister Modi is to consolidate New Delhi’s strategic position in the region where China wants to make its presence felt through maritime silk route strategy. He sought to woo smaller Indian Ocean states away from increasing Chinese influence but he stressed that India’s neighbors should be the first beneficiaries of India’s economic progress.

Modi undertook visits to Sri Lanka, Mauritius and Seychelles from the second week of March, leaving out Maldives. Ostensibly, this move aims at strengthening New Delhi’s diplomatic and strategic engagement with Indian Ocean countries, but in reality it is taken to checkmate China’s influence in the region on behalf of USA. For this, seeds were sown a few years ago when Indian Ocean security grouping (IO-5) was formed by including Sri Lanka, Maldives, Mauritius and Seychelles in it. China in recent years heavily funded infrastructure development projects in these countries, making India apprehensive because it perceives the region to be its traditional territory of influence.

Seychelles, together with the navies of 16 other countries, is a part of India’s ‘Exercise Milan’ held annually in the Indian Ocean and the Asia-Pacific region. India and Seychelles (which comprises a group of 115 small islands totaling an area of 455 sq km) are partners in the blue economy, which envisages tapping of oceanic resources in the Seychelles’ vast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). The visit was high on symbolism as the two nations are likely to sign a slew of agreements on science, education and health. India may also announce financial assistance for this strategically valuable country.

India handed over the first offshore petrol vessel to Mauritius in December 2014. New Delhi wants closer maritime cooperation from Mauritius, the country which annually sends dozens of cadets for training in India. During Modi’s visit, cooperation between Indian Navy and Mauritian Coast Guard was high on the agenda of the dialogue. There were talks over Agalega islands, which have been much sought after by Indian armed forces. They want to use North Agalega Island to service manned and unmanned reconnaissance aircraft. To improve its air surveillance capabilities in the Indian Ocean region, New Delhi has been persuading Mauritius to hand over on lease both North and South Agalega islands, which are located closer to India than Mauritius.

He avoided visiting the Maldives, which has a pro-China administration and where a supposedly pro-India opposition leader is being tried for terrorism. Modi visited Seychelles and Mauritius before Sri Lanka on his tour of Indian Ocean states. On 15 March, he was expected to land at Male, the capital of Maldives. But this plan changed in the last minute as political situation in this country remained tensed as ex-Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed’s arrest under terrorism charges kicked up a political storm in the country. India has raised concern over the development. Maldivian opposition leaders requested Modi to cancel the first ever prime ministerial visit to the island country.

It seems India had warned the Maldives with cancellation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the Indian Ocean nation in the second week of March, unless it ensured a fair trial for former President Mohammed Nasheed, arrested amid a crisis that has caught New Delhi off guard. At the time the Maldives government was preparing to arrest Nasheed the principal Opposition leader in the Maldives, the Indian high commission in Male was hosting a poolside “Bollywood Night” with dancers jiving to popular Hindi film songs. Nasheed has long alleged a witch hunt by the government led by Yameen, cousin of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom who ruled the nation for close to three decades before the introduction of democracy. Yameen, who had after coming to power in late 2013 promised strong ties with India, has in recent months been wooing China too. Nasheed’s arrest has precipitated Modi’s biggest diplomatic trial as Prime Minister yet from India’s smaller but strategically critical neighbours. Modi had mocked the previous UPA government for allowing the Maldives to pose a challenge to India.

PM Modi visited India’s sea neighbor Sri Lanka to patch up ties and shore up support for his job at hand. Sri Lanka’s new government has recently suspended the Chinese-funded $1.5 billion Colombo Port City project, citing environmental issues and alleged corruption. It was inaugurated in September during a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who included Sri Lanka in a new maritime “Silk Road” linking the energy-rich Persian Gulf with China. BJP ruling India was considered as one overarching positive trend driving the energy and optimism across South Asia. The defeat of Sri Lankan strong mean Rajapaksha by his own minister Sirisena in the presidential poll had a lot Indian fresh air.

Modi became the first Indian leader to visit Sri Lanka in 28 years, reciprocating the trip to India last month by Sri Lanka’s new president. Modi since his election last May has emphasized rally his SAARC neighbors. Modi visited Northern and Eastern regions of the country to see India-funded projects, including 500-MW thermal power plant being built by NTPC in collaboration with Sri Lanka’s Ceylon Electricity Board in Trincomalee. Modi also unveiled highway and railway projects there. India also announced a fresh financial package for the island nation, which has sought New Delhi’s assistance in the health sector too.

Modi held bilateral talks with Sri Lanka’s new President Maithripala Sirisena, who seems to have made a departure from policies favoring Beijing and toward ethnic reconciliation with his country’s Tamil minority, a sensitive issue in India-Sri Lanka relations. Modi said India has committed $1.6 billion in development assistance for Sri Lanka, promising to continue the development partnership.

The BJP’s and Indian government’s criticism had sharpened when the Maldives government cancelled a 25-year contract to Bangalore infrastructure firm GMR to build an international airport in Male, and then when Nasheed took asylum at the Indian high commission there. Now, with the Maldives in the throes of a domestic political crisis, the Modi government may need to recalibrate its strategy for the region. Despite a series of warnings over the past two months, India did not expect the Yameen government to actually arrest Nasheed and trigger a face-off with the supporters of the MDP, the island’s largest political party.

Those trips were planned to stamp Modi’s emphasis on India’s tinier island neighbours to the south, aggressively wooed by China as part of President Xi Jinping’s “Maritime Silk Route” project to build a new marine route dominated by Beijing. India would like to show to the world that the resurgence of India was evidenced by the vibrant but corrupt elections last year that saw emergence of BJP as the strongest party in India and the ouster of the senior most corrupt Congress led UPA government. However, that optimism of Indian strategists disappeared very soon as the ruling BJP lost in Kashmir, Delhi and elsewhere. The effort to equalize BJP with India failed. India claims to be the sole leader of South Asia and claimed a veto seat but world powers did not take the claim seriously.

Sri Lanka is the last leg of Modi’s tour of the region, PM Modi has already visited a friendly Bhutan and a distancing Nepal. Started with safe Bhutan and Nepal, Modi has ended his South Asia tour in Sri Lanka while he has so far left out Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Maldives – all Muslims countries that New Delhi considers problematic.

II

Asian giant China with which India has territorial disputes vehemently opposes permanent induction of India into UNSC to enable it to be a real strategic partner of big powers. India has realized it needs a veto member China not just for cross border trade and services but also for advancing its veto dream.

In fact, India has been trying to shore up support of all veto members and other major power for its veto position but China has bluntly opposed India from being on UNSC as a permanent member.  India therefore has begun to cultivate good neighborly relations with China with which it has many issues to be sorted out, including territorial.

Recently, contours of India’s countermeasure against Beijing’s influence in the region got reflected when New Delhi and Colombo signed civil nuclear cooperation agreement during Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena’s four-day visit. The two countries also decided to expand defence and security cooperation between them.

India does not want to give leeway to China in Maldives where Beijing is developing the Ihavandoo and Maarandhoo islands. At Hanimaadhoo, it wants to establish second international airport. It also plans to set up a naval submarine base in Marao.  The naval base issue was raised with the Maldivian authorities during Chinese defence minister Chang Wanguan’s visit in November 2014 close on the heels of the Chinese President’s visit in September. New Delhi believes that the current dispensation in Male, like Sri Lanka’s former President Mahinda Rajapakse, is trying to use ongoing rivalry between India and China to its benefit. Aware of this fact, New Delhi is not in a mood to lose its grip on the Maldives. This is the reason it wanted Modi to visit Maldives.

New Delhi’s move is apparently intended to checkmate China’s growing strategic footprints in the Indian Ocean region. Modi is likely to visit Mauritius, Sri Lanka, Seychelles and the Maldives in the second week of March. However, a visit to the Maldives now appears to be a bit uncertain in the wake of volatile political situation in the island nation following arrest of former president Mohamed Nasheed, the Deccan Herald report further said.

Modi’s China visit in May is likely to be one of his toughest foreign policy assignments in the first year of his tenure as PM? A successful Indian Ocean tour with a focus on increasing security and military cooperation with the smaller island neighbours will help Modi negotiate with the Chinese from a position of strength.  In September 2014, when Chinese President Xi Jinping landed in India for a three-day visit he had already visited Maldives and Sri Lanka – both strategically sensitive nations in the Indian Ocean region. From Male and Colombo, he had secured cooperation for his country’s much vaunted maritime silk route plan. He had also announced Beijing’s plans to intensify defence and maritime engagement with Maldives and Sri Lanka. Such moves were looked upon by India with concern.

Ahead of PM Narendra Modi’s visit to China in May, the government’s Indian Ocean gambit is gathering momentum like it has never before. India has hardly merited consideration until now as a serious player in the maritime great game but that could all be changing with the government lining successive engagements with its neighbours spread across the Indian Ocean region.

Despite India’s reservations over China’s maritime Silk Road project, which entails port-building activities at several places in Indian Ocean, most of these countries India is reaching out to have accepted the Chinese proposal for economic benefits and equally to increase their bargaining power with geographically nearer New Delhi.  India continues to nurse deep insecurities about the project, an initiative of President Xi Jinping.

New Delhi is actually working to blunt the force of China’s proposal by choosing to highlight its own maritime history, including India’s central role in what it calls spice and mausam routes. The government has looked to impart a strategic content to the culture ministry’s Project Mausam, a transnational initiative meant to revive India’s ancient maritime routes and cultural linkages with countries in the Indian Ocean.

 

III

Needless to state that Indian focus today on the western powers has grown rapidly for various reasons and USA remains the epicenter of western world.

Focused on international issues like a seat on the discredited UNSC, PM Modi has been, however, focusing on USA and other western nations. India considers South Asia a play field space to work for advancing major objectives send messages to USA. Modi has visited Washington and met US president Barack Obama on the sidelines of a UN meet and discussed India’s problems and concerns. .

The third stage diplomacy of PM Modi began in USA as part of wooing western powers regarding the veto and American connection indeed matters a lot for New Delhi. Modi had gone to Washington to invite US president to attend Indian Repulbic Day celebrations in January and an innocent looking Obama did oblige PM Modi, he came to New Delhi to meet his “‘friend”.  Obama came to India with a large bunch of US businessmen to strike deals with their Indian counterparts.

India however could not manage a hint from Obama about India’s fate about a veto on the discredited UNSC. As usual the US president did not offer any assurance. However, India achieved one objective: Obama did not even mention about the disputed Kashmir issue but focused on the parade and business.

USA claims to be the net providers of security, together ensuring freedom of navigation and safeguarding the maritime domain. These values are clearly enshrined in two new documents: Joint Strategic Vision for the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean Region and the Delhi Declaration of Friendship.

India and USA reached agreement with India to strengthen the India-US partnership on economy, human rights and governance fronts. They seek to elevate the commercial and economic partnership as part of the Strategic and Commercial Dialogue to advance “shared prosperity”. Washington also said the new Indian government had energized the bilateral ties and the two countries were now essential partners in promoting peace, prosperity, and stability across the Indo-Pacific region. By leveraging the private sector and Indian resources, the USA has been getting sizable outcomes out of small inputs.

As India believes insistence would achieve the goal of veto, Americans are skeptical about Indian ability to analyze issues to know that a new veto membership on UNSC, if at all, would go to Germany which has been in wafting or Japan or North Korea or any other nation that shares US values.  It is not cricket that India by virtue of its IPL expenditures could get a series win along with man of match position win by various means including prior fixing or get favorable schedules, but veto is not given just because somebody keeps pestering.

A message New Delhi is seeking to convey is that it is possible for giant nations to have peaceful, mutually beneficial relations with their maritime neighbours. Unlike the case with China, India’s relations with its neighbours across vast bodies of water are not marred by maritime disputes.

The strategic partnership with USA has not solved all its problems, not even in nuclear sector and many Indian sources murmur that India is wasting its resources on USA for nothing in return while Pakistan gets huge sums from Washington as service charges. And Modi’s next journey is towards the Great Wall in the neighborhood followed by Canada, France, and Germany in April. This shuttle diplomacy is supposed to auger well for advancing India’s national interest.

Like Congress party, BJP also has done everything possible to retain Kashmir and to apply pressure on USA for strategic partnership that would also work against Pakistan and China.

One does not know if the rulers of western powers would hesitate to shake hands with blood stained hands of PM Modi, former chief minister of Gujarat state in West India – but the fact that his palms are stained with Indian Muslim blood could make them all feel cool.

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