Tuesday, July 18, 2006

India and Israel

[Since this post covers a number of aspects , to keep the post short I have written it in summary form. but appropriate links have been provide where reqd]

When I first introduced myself to the students of my Step University WakeForest I got a very good response. Alumni from our institute have done exceedingly well across the years on the Student Exchange Program. When they further learned that I was from IIT, the appreciation further increased. Who doesn't know IIT in USA.

But then some strange things happened. When the Mumbai blast happened, some of my friends from France and US expressed concern and send me "Hope India gets well" type of messages. But the thing is that I just don't need them. When I have done well in life, the place where I am studying is renowned all over the world, why should I be an object of sympathy because of the inability of our spineless politicians to take decisive action. When we have best tehnicians, managers and bureaucrats in the world why should we still remain a terror victimised country, looking towards foreign support for survival of our citizens. Now you mayn't agree about the best bureaucrats but believe me, they are one of the best, if not the best.

Just to put things in perspective, in 1965 war Indian forces have reached as far as Lahore and then suddenly Lal Bahadur Shastri, our PM agreed to ceasefire. We could easily have taken PoK at that time. Then again in 1971 war, we did succeed in separating bangladesh from Pakistan. We had captured 10,000 pakistani soldiers but decided to release them unconditionally. We let go off our advantage in both these situations. Though we shoudn't have taken any land from Pakistan but atleast we could have had our Kashmir back.

Now with the Mumbai blasts. Seven blasts rocked suburban trains in Mumbai on 11th July and led to killing of about 200 people and injury to many more.

The spirit of Mumbai was once again evident with people going out of the way to help each other. And as usual Day after blasts, Mumbai limped back to normal.

Incidentally or intentionally there was a blast on the same day in Srinagar(J&K). But anyways we have stopped worrying about the terrorism in that part of the country.

The reaction from Indian politicians was pathetic, to say the least. Prime Minister came out with some global statements like Mumbai blasts had cross-border support (Dont we anyways know it)and "Action, commitment needed from Pakistan"(Now we don't need action from Pakistan, we need it from you). With other parties it was worse. Even as the Students Islamic Movement of India appeared on the Mumbai police's list of suspects responsible for Tuesday's serial blasts, the Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Uttar Pradesh government gave the organisation a clean chit. BJP and Left played their own games.

On the other side, Mr.Kasuri, Foreign Minister of Pakistan said that said the 'best way' of dealing with extremism in South Asia is to tackle 'real issue' of Jammu and Kashmir. General Musharraf wants concrete information instead of unsubstantiated allegations. They went to the extent of claiming that India has made Pakistan a scapegoat. On the other hand India is still hopeful that Pakistan will join war on terror.

Now towards the other side of the story. On July 18th Israel attacked Lebanese army base near Beirut. Israel's prime minister said Monday that Israel will continue fighting in Lebanon until the release of two Israeli soldiers abducted last week.

Now, Israel massed tanks and troops on the border, called up reserves and warned civilians to flee Hezbollah-controlled southern Lebanon as it prepared Friday for a likely ground invasion to set up a deep buffer zone.

Somehow I feel that India and Israel have a lot in common. We both are terror struck countries with hostile neighbors on all sides. We both are democracies within the midst of vast desert of autocratic governments. But we are following different strategies towards similar problems.

Though personally i am not in favour of violence, having myself criticized rang de basanti quiet a few times. But the thing is that the issue has gone out of hand, with no hope of pakistan ever cooperating. And India will continue to bleed, it seems, if it doesn't take any aggressive step. The whole technological and economic progress cann't be sustainable unless there is safety and security for its citizens. And what is the use of spending 4% of our GDP in defence if anyways we are not going to use it. we can spend that money in education, health or even distributing free pizzas to Indian citizens. Atleast it has some utility value for them. Defence spending has none.

Just before World War II, when Jews were being thrown out of thir land, Jawahar Lal Nehru offered them to come to India. In return Israel is the only country in the world to have supported India in all the 3 wars. Today Israel is one of the largest defence supplier to India. And it can provide technology to India in diverse fields from dry farming to biochips. India on the other hand should support Israel on all international forums.

But it wont happen. India will be back with all the peace initiatives and confidence building measures with Pakistan. Till the next attack happens. And it does sadden me that inspite of myself doing so well in life I have to read all those sympathetic mails from the American and French students.



Blogger janak said...

well said,
But this kind of post is routine now.
When somebody(?) will start action?
Its like Swadesh movie.
No one will help us.
We have to make our way ourselves.

2:14 PM  
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Anonymous Kuffr said...

Good analysis, but aren't you forgetting that little matter of nukes on both sides when it comes to India-Pak vis-a-vis israel-Palestine?

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