Perhaps the media’s behaviour only reflects the ominous silence of the Indian government on the issue, which has so far offered only a few wishy-washy statements on the developing crisis. C. Raja Mohan had an excellent column in the Indian Express (dated Sep 28) where he outlined the strategic considerations and calculations involved in the stance that
“In dealing with its neighbours,
The real policy question for
The policy change towards
Four days later, in the Express issue dated Oct 02, Shishir Gupta wrote a column which appears to be a direct response to Rajamohan’s argument as evident in its title: “
"Although the EU-US wants
… … … The UPA political leadership, in particular the Congress leaders, may privately be supportive of Aung San Suu Kyi and the monks now on Rangoon’s streets, but overtly it will have to deal with whosoever is in power; such is the security calculus.
An Express editorial dated Sep 24 (which urged proactive action not for reasons of morality but because not doing so will give
“the need for Burmese Army’s cooperation in dealing with the insurgencies in the Northeast, Burma’s natural role as a land-bridge to Southeast Asia, and the importance of preventing Burma’s total dependence on China for external support.”
One should probably add
Looking at the arguments which focus on short and medium term strategic interests, I for reminded of the arguments offered by governments which supported the apartheid regime in
To end, I want to recall a particularly evocative statement from PM Manmohan Singh’s Aug 13 speech in Parliament on the Indo-US nuclear deal. This is what he said:
“Finally, Sir, let me end by saying that we have achieved an Agreement that is good for
I do not quote this to reopen the debate over the Indo-US nuclear deal. I do so to make the point that if PM Singh’s government is genuinely concerned about the judgment of history and posterity, and if it wants to regain India’s “due place in global councils,” it will have to show that when called upon to do so, India can cast aside narrow short term gains, and indeed act against them to take on a leadership role on the great moral issues of our time. History usually remembers those actions where crucial figures act against their own interests to do the right thing.