http://www.rediff.com/news/column/rajee ... 140303.htmThe time will come when America can dictate to India, and expect to be obeyed
' Rajeev Srinivasan
Thus, it is a matter of great concern when Americans want to fix India. Much of the time, India is peripheral to the US foreign policy establishment, except when they are annoyed with it (as in the Nixon-Kissinger days) or they are trying to sell some snake oil to it (as in the much-ballyhooed case of the 'nuclear deal', which was, to digress for a minute, a selling out of India's national security in exchange for virtually nothing).In fact, India does much better when it is not on the radar of America's self-styled do-gooders.Therefore, it is alarming that a group at the University of California, Berkeley's business school is toiling on a project to 'create a policy and protocol framework for protecting people's rights in situations of internal armed conflict and mass violence' in India.Which is amazing, considering that there is less violence and conflict in India than in any of the countries mentioned above, and that, anyway, there has been low-level insurgencies in India for decades.
This leads me to wonder, does the Berkeley group know something that the rest of us don't?
The context, of course, is that there have been persistent rumours that the US has 'assets' high in the Indian government. The long-sustained (but just-lifted) boycott of Narendra Modi (allegedly because a group of leftists and Muslims in the US were upset) is another indication that the US does have an interest in the 2014 Indian election: They do have a dog in this fight.There is also the surprising and widespread white noise in support of the Aam Aadmi Party by such establishment stalwarts as The New York Times and The Economist, among others. It is hard, prima facie, to believe the Americans would genuinely embrace a self-proclaimed anarchist group with far-Left views on almost everything. Nevertheless, there they are, with their front foundations merrily giving away all sorts of awards and money to the AAP.This fits in with an observed tactic on the part of the West to encourage leftist, nihilist dissident groups in other countries. It is rather evident by now that a Narendra Modi-led government would not be particularly easy to bribe or manipulate -- it does appear that he neither forgives nor forgets -- and that it would be, as with Shinzo Abe's administration in Japan, prone to care about the national interest, not America's.
This, of course, is anathema to the American world view based on George Kennan's Cold War views on hegemony.Thus, as a first approximation, a plausible American tactic would be to try and prevent the Bharatiya Janata Party and Modi from coming to power by splitting the anti-Congress vote using the AAP, and in case that fails, to follow up with a Plan B to make India ungovernable, to create mass conflict through their agents.This is not theoretical: ..The concern about the Berkeley group is magnified if you look at their Web site. Grandly claiming that an aim of this 'Armed Conflict Resolution and People's Rights Project' is to 'engage with affected communities, and periodically engage with members of the Government of India,' it identifies J&K, Manipur, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, and specifically Gujarat and Odisha as having been 'impacted by far-reaching violence on minority communities in recent history.'In other words, the usual anti-Modi rhetoric about the Gujarat riots in 2002, with a few other topics thrown in for the sake of camouflage. Old wine in new bottles.
The impression that there is more to this group, attached to the Haas School of Business at Berkeley, than meets the eye, is strengthened by a perusal of the list of principals. One is a notable purveyor of anti-India ideas, who was implicated in the Faigate scandal as an unregistered lobbyist for Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence. Another is now out on bail on charges of embezzling funds from victims of violence. Another is attached to the Lawrence Berkeley National Labs, which deals with nuclear weapons!Many of the others are old war-horses from the FOIL (Forum of Indian Leftists which transmogrified one fine day into the Forum of Inquilabi Leftists), a group that is reflexively and viscerally opposed to many things in India, especially to right-leaning Hindus.There are enough people with a known history of antipathy to Modi in this group to strengthen the impression that this whole thing is another exercise for Modi's benefit.What is particularly sinister is that there is circumstantial evidence that seems to indicate that people like FOIL have, in the past, 'known' about certain events before they happened. Which, by Occam's Razor, would suggest that these events were not random, but were planned, and that the leftists were in the know.Are they planning to just study conflict, or is there more?Furthermore, if the objective is to study conflict, why does the focus lie entirely on India, with almost all the members of the working group being of Indian origin?
As I pointed out above, there is actual armed conflict in many other places right now, so why India alone?The implication is that this group may well be witting or unwitting participants in a conspiracy to create violence in India.There is an implicit American project going on regarding India anyway: Many American maps show the entire North-East detached from India, in addition to all of Jammu and Kashmir. There has been much pressure on India to give away the Siachen Glacier to Pakistan.And given the fact that India has now become the biggest buyer of American arms, the time will come when America can dictate to an Indian government, and expect to be obeyed.It looks as though the Berkeley group may be planning to add internal pressure as well to the mix to discomfit an Indian government. This is a matter of serious concern, and it is not too far-fetched to consider this a conspiracy to overthrow a future Indian government. In my book, that would be considered seditious, and it should be treated accordingly.