/**SNAP Code begin **/ /**SNAP Code end **/

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Shourie's Chinese Points

What's amazing about Sri Shourie's thoughts on how to deal with China, from his latest book Are we deceiving ourselves again?, is that those thoughts could have been made in post-war 1962! It seems Chinese haven't changed, but importantly, we haven't either.

From among the many:

* Never take its silence to be consent.

* Nor its ambiguous word: remember the. statements they kept making about the maps being old, and their not having had the time to correct them.

* Nor indeed its consent. Not even if that consent is in writing: no compunction restrained China from repudiating the 17-point Agreement with Tibet 50 years ago, just as no compunction has restrained it now from brushing aside the principles and 'political parameters' that were agreed for the settling the border question.

* Rushing troops around at the last minute, buying weapons at the last minute, learning how to counter new types of warfare at the last minute. All this has to be done when the avalanche descends, but by then it is of little use. Nor does the emotion and enthusiasm with which people respond to aggression save the country. The emotion and enthusiasm are indispensable. But they are no substitute for having prepared oneself in the years that precede the onslaught. As Clausewitz would say, "The best strategy is always to be very strong". Both terms are equally important: "always" as well as "very strong".

* Do not pose the question as "all or nothing". The choice that the other fellow sees is not "war or peace", but "limited war", "proxy war", "the violence of peace".
The last point is worth pondering. When the Chinese recently cracked down, yet again, on the Tibetans fighting for independence from communist tyranny, a media person asked a senior politician in the lefty Congress I what was its government's response. That politician answered because we can't roll our tanks into Tibet to defend Tibetans, there is nothing we can do. In fact, I doubt if Manmohan Singh even raised the issue of Tibet in any of his meetings with the Chinese leaders.

Sri Shourie's points reminds me of the letter that Sardar wrote to Nehru in 1949, an year prior to his death, about the nature of communist regimes, especially that of Chinese nature and how we should be prepared for that nature in the early years of an independent nation. Nehru probably thought the pre-modern old fool didn't know what he was talking about - after all communism was the modern future and the Chinese themselves have convinced him otherwise. One can only guess the response Sardar would have given to the Chinese takeover of Tibet few years after his death.

Here is Brahma Chellaney's review of the book.

Fighting Both Sides

Not that Islamic terrorists in Bharat lack any sympathizers among the self-proclaimed intellectuals, the p-sec media, and socialists, but Jamia Milia Islamia is taking the phrase "fighting both sides" in the battle of Islamic terror to a whole new level.

After denying any links with any of the suspected terrorists arrested by the police for the Delhi bombings of September 13, Jamia Milia Islamia, the denominational university that neighbours the Jamia Nagar ghetto where the Indian Mujahideen module was based, has finally been forced to admit it was wrong. Having attacked the police for allegedly misleading the public, the Jamia administrators have grudgingly accepted that two of those arrested were students of the university. However, this acceptance has not come with cold horror or sober contrition. Rather, the Vice-Chancellor of the university has, with uncharacteristic bravado, decided to put the weight of Jamia -- as the institution is commonly known -- behind the terror suspects. He has committed the university to providing "legal help to the two students ... until they are proven guilty". [Pioneer]
Who needs to pay for that crude to support those Saudi princes who can then send some education funds to the favorite groups of al Qaeda, which then dispersers the funds to various terrorists groups such as LeT and those guys end up funding the terror groups such as SIMI and the so-called Indian Mujaheddins (those were 1-2-3-4-5 steps, at least). (Come to think of it, isn't this how monies are transferred among Catholic church groups to harvest dark souls - but that's a whole another topic.)

Here, all the school teacher, whose son was probably killed in any one of the various terrorist bomb blasts around the country initiated by people apparently-not-belonging-to-a-particular-community as the prime minister likes to say until recently, needs to do is to pay her taxes to the central government. Honourable Human Resource Development minister would then disperse the funds directly to JMI, ostensibly to develop a few human resources for the country's future, and it will fight the other side of terror by defending Islamic terrorists (those were 1-2 steps) - all to clear its good name.

It's nice to know JMI cares about its good name. So, just to be sure, will it refund the money taken from the school teacher's taxes if JMI is unable to clear its good name so that the honourable Human Resources Development minister can develop a few other resources for the country's future?