A lesson the media will never forget.
By Balbir Punj | 12th November 2016
The one big revelation from the US presidential election campaign is the widening gap between the “liberal” media and the people of America. For days together during the campaign the media went on to tell the world — not just Americans — that Donald Trump was not fit to be the President of America.
Trump has been elected by the same America that had twice elected a black as the President. It has now turned against the ‘minoritism’ that raised the once suppressed or the ordinary to the White House – the haberdasher Truman, the Catholic Kennedy, the non-academic Ronald Reagan and the African-American Obama.
The overflow of liberalism in the US saw ideas like same-sex marriage, bearing children via surrogacy, the surge in divorce reducing over 40 per cent families to single parent ones, the huge outflow of American jobs to other countries, the Lehman collapse and the resultant popular anger against the Washington establishment — added up to a return to the conservative core that made America what it is: honour for the man who fights his battle alone, wins and makes his billions by taking enormous risks.
In the case of the Republican nominee Trump, besides his self-made billions, there was the straight talk that if elected, he would not allow America to be swamped by immigrant Muslims from North Africa and West Asia and will not treat the terrorist jihadis of the IS with kid gloves. The US media failed to get to the heart of growing American anger against the religious liberalism that was enabling many American Muslims to become a jihadi.
In this growing anger against international jihadism, Americans are not alone. The election results in Germany, France and public opinion in Britain are turning against the new demon of self-proclaimed destroyer of all that is not its version of Islam in a war against civilized values of humanity.
After the drubbing the US media got in this election, the media elsewhere, especially in India should take notice. It should rethink its attempt to be the evangelist of every dissident countrymen who think it is their basic right to condemn their own country as the one which needs to be broken down to pieces and the country’s detractors elevated to heroes instead of being sent to the gallows.
The upset victory of the straight-talking and no-nonsense real estate billionaire in the US should be a warning that across the globe, especially in India, that often it is the intellectuals claiming to be liberals who, by seeing virtues in felons and fifth-columnists alike are weakening a nation’s defence against the determined infiltrators and the death-spewing jihadi terrorists.
Today, France that has been hit hard by jihadi killers in Paris. Belgium also has been affected by similar killers who targeted the Brussels airport. Britain, Germany, Spain that had a taste of such barbarism are ruing the day that they had allowed North African and West Asian “refugees and immigrants” to enter freely.
In our country, several districts in Assam, West Bengal, Bihar etc., have witnessed a change in religious demography. There is a sharp rise among the Muslims in Hyderabad and North Malabar under the influence of the IS. It has resulted in over 21 couples — many recent converts — opting to join the IS and organisations seeking to impose by force a Sharia rule in their area as a parallel law to India’s civil and criminal law.
The US Presidential campaign saw the conservative Donald Trump getting demonstrative support from a good section of influential Indian Americans there. America is now fully aware of the perfidy and double talk of Pakistan using American aid – latest Congressional reports indicate 33 billion dollars – to build up its armed force for allegedly helping American interests but actually to attack India, thrice in direct war and now continuing terrorist thrusts.
China is seeking to build up Pakistan as a client state against Indian interests and continues to oppose New Delhi’s entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group. The country is also blocking the effort of the international community to declare JeM’s Masood Azhar as a terrorist.
Trump’s entry into the White House will coincide with a resurgence of China’s “One Belt, One Road”, Asian domination under Beijing’s diktat, the Chinese bid to grab the South China Sea Islands in which there are seven other claimants from the neighbouring Pacific rim countries and its claims on everybody else’s land to its south and east.
The Trump presidency will also coincide with the comparative decline in the growth of the Chinese economy and growing awareness of its neighbours from Japan to South-east Asia and India about Chinese imperial ambitions. If Trump is to reassert America as the global leader he will have to accept India as a firm partner in an Asian alliance against Beijing’s ambition to dominate Asia. The hopeful sign is that Donald Trump has captured American imagination with a denouncement of the Washington cabal that is more eager to balance for peace rather than going along with it.
It may be historic that while India has had two years and more of a pragmatic, no-nonsense Prime Minister who can take bold decisions as he demonstrated in fighting deeply entrenched black money with a courageous but risky move by demonitisation of high value notes, America too now will have a no-nonsense President. That gives hope for a stronger India-America partnership for keeping the peace and curbing jihadi undergrowth and ambitions.
Balbir Punj is a former Rajya Sabha member and a Delhi-based commentator on social and political issues