In April 1990, Shri Jag Mohan the then Governor of J&K State published an open letter addressed to Rajiv Gandhi which is quite revealing. He in no uncertain terms accused Rajiv of gross dereliction of duty committed unwittingly by him, when he ignored all the warning signals coming from the State. In that letter he reminds him “You once said that I do not read history. I make history. Apparently you do not know that those who happen to make history without reading it make bad history.” Those were prophetic words. A yogi, it seems does possess clairvoyance.
When America was in a tearing hurry to attack Afghanistan, Prince Charles placed an urgent call to William Farish, Washington Ambassador to London asking him to pass on his request to President Bush apparently to ask him to defer war in view of Ramadan. “Are you serious?” Ambassador tells him. Apparently he had made an intervention without the knowledge of Tony Blair. Bush never knew about it. He went to Afghanistan to make history without reading Afghan history. He made bad history. Last chapter of that history is yet to be written.
Had God blessed Americans with some pragmatism and intelligence, they had only to put a naval blockade around Pakistan, crippled her over flight access and demanded arrest of all wanted criminals. Americans and Pakis were neck deep manipulating civil war in Afghanistan, ever since they raised the spectre of Taleban. Both parties knew,” Who is Who” in Afghanistan. America could have achieved quickly and economically what they intend to achieve now in future. The US has spent $1 trillion till now on fighting the Afghan war. The net gain was reaped by Pakistan. The transit money gave them an additional source of revenue. So they will never allow the US to leave Afghanistan.
America far from bombing Pakistan to stone ages became her partner in crime. This gave tremendous courage to Pakistan. ISI were emboldened to execute their plan to spread the spectre of terror into Central India. Death never sleeps. ISI never sleeps! That is my assessment!
On 11th Sep 2001 WTC was attacked with deadly precision. Just 4 weeks into 9/11, America started the Operation Freedom on 7th Oct ‘01. On 13th Dec the temple of Indian democracy and freedom was attacked. Pakistan caught Indians napping. The next target was Gujarat. On 27th Feb 2002 Kar Sevaks were targeted. The Indian 5th column took over from here.
But why Gujarat!
I am yet to decipher why was the train attacked? When I consulted the map it gave me one clue. Kashmir and Gujarat share situational features to a large extent. In fact Gujarat not only shares border with Pakistan but being a rim land is more penetrable than Kashmir. So if militancy had to be established in Central India the route had to remain calm. Was it an exhibition of anger by some lowly SIMI activists because the organisation was banned immediately after 9/11? Was it something similar when Riyaz Sheikh empowered by an AK47 turned nuts and went straight to the house of Watali the then DGP Kashmir in ’88 and challenged him to announce that the era of terrorism has started? Why did Gujarat remain in news courtesy many terrorist related incidents which include the infamous Ishrat Jehan encounter?
Or was it a home grown plot to malign a new Chief Minister and defame him to the extent of being removed from his post? Were the people rendered powerless politically, playing a dangerous game?
Dynamics of decay passes through many a phase of retreat and regression. When Sonia Gandhi accepted the offer to receive the Belgium’s Order of Leopold in Nov 2006, it was the beginning of the end of the Congress party because it corroded the spiritual and moral defenses of the grand old party. How could the party President accept an award from a country whose crimes in Africa can be matched with Hitler’s Germany? Charisma, Charm, Frugal Conversation are sufficient to create a halo around an ordinary person. There is deception in silence. It hides the deficiency of a person till he she opens his/her mouth. But Dr Karan Singh accompanying her to Belgium made up for any paucity of scholarship. Uncountable nouns can be loaned/shared; I don’t know!
The emotional provocation of train burning and communal rites which followed and the almost unmatched blitzkrieg unleashed by the 5th column made opportunists, conmen and turn coats to take shelter under the leaking roof of the UPA. It was a great opportunity. Together they won control of power at the centre in 2004. The gullible Indians were again deceived by the propaganda of the prospective rulers. The UPA in turn made Sonia a mighty extra-constitutional authority. So much hormonal hubris was fostered that caution was thrown to winds. So loyals in the media and pliant Militia in the academia created a smoke screen around Godhra. And with a doctorate in the hands of Sonia, the UPA merrily started huffing between coal mines and digital crimes. In this riveting drama every agency in the government lost site that China was making deft moves in Sri Lanka exposing our maritime defences in the South to the curse of pelf and low pragmatism.
The 6th pay commission recommendations were accepted and implemented in Sep ’08. So while the officials and officers were calculating the benefits, China was making very strong moves to purchase influences in Sri Lanka and capture a market where the seller was penniless. The tactics employed by them were sourced from the ancient Chinese wisdom. Nehru allowed one sentence for Chanakya in his Discovery of India. Obviously he called everything Indigenous mumbo-jumbo. Even common sense was mumbo-jumbo!
The rope that the Chinese Shylock threw around the neck of Sri Lanka in ’08 hurts so much that even after yielding ground and concessions to China, she is mulling ways to renegotiate the trap of financial tyranny and gain some slack. The bitter pill of handing over 80% stakes to Chinese Companies has been swallowed by Sri Lankan’s. But giving control over security of the port is yet to be sugar coated to push it down the throats of the people which will take some more time. People are being prepared to understand how by leasing 15000 acres of land to Chinese companies for building an economic hinterland will bring prosperity to the nation. It will in fact become a national strategic asset! That is what is being trumpeted at present in Sri Lanka.
On 14th Sep 2014, Xi Ping Chinese President paid a visit to Maldives. 200 delegates accompanied him. The press was intrigued. Who are these people? There was no satisfactory answer. In Dec 2014, the country’s only water and sewage plant caught fire. There was no water for drinking. But China had kept water ready in case…1000 tons of fresh water was flown into Male. And then came the military vessels to take charge. Maldivians are obliged that China is a dependable friend. A friend in need is a friend indeed!
Maldives is India’s strategic backyard. As the crow flies it covers 1000kms from Colombo to Mali. Consult the latitude it is almost a straight line.
Maldives supplies to ISIS man power only next to Tunisia. Radicalisation in Maldives has been going on for a long time. People to people ties between Maldives and Pakistan provided a great opportunity for Wahabism to take roots in this Island nation. In order to take radicalisation to the next level Riyadh has chipped in. In March ’14 the Crown Prince Salman-Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of defence pledged to build 10 world class mosques in Maldives. In 2015 Saudi’s set up a diplomatic mission in Maldives. As a follow up, the construction of King Salman Mosque project has been inaugurated. It will be built on an area of more than 0.14 million square feet area.
As a quid pro quo Maldives became a part of Islamic Military Alliance which was initiated by Saudi Arabia last year to meet the so called threat from the ISIS.
But the most disturbing news is that Saudi Arabia is planning to buy three atolls of Faafu to be owned by Prince Mohammed in perpetuity! But some tactical audio leak has made the Saudis to present the deal as an investment for setting up a SEZ worth $10 billion which is roughly three times the size of GDP of Maldives.
Islam will prevail! You may visit chapter 8 once again, to convince the sceptics who are overlooking disturbing trends in India.
The Bangla Desh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina returned home from her Indian visit on 10th April perhaps on a subdued note. Our fatalistic diplomacy, it seems is a great source of courage for our neighbours. They come and start from a position of supplicant, extract concessions but go home complaining. While the exchange of border enclaves and settlement of land border favouring Bangla Desh was confirmed in 2015, yet the fencing of border is not going on well due to the objections from Dhaka. While out of a total area of 25600 square Km of Bay of Bengal, 19467 sq km of area went to Bangla Desh, yet BD purchased two Ming type submarines from China in Nov 2016. China-Bangla Desh economic ties are developing. Even BD is cooperating with China on OBOR projects. The entire risk taken by India to liberate the BD from Pak stranglehold has paid no dividends. Minorities are facing existential problem at present as much as when BD was East Pakistan. I remember, in ’97 my letter to Hindustan Times was prominently published but the political chaos in Delhi and secular seizure of MSM failed to build up a humanitarian case for the unfortunate Hindus trapped in Bangla Desh.
Next we may expect joint China-BD- Nepal military exercises in the Bay of Bengal to the glee of Pakistan. It is much easier to repent of sins that we have committed than to repent of those we intend to commit-Josh Billings. Hindus have yet to learn the difference between deception and delusion. One thousand years have gone by and change of circumstances has not altered the defect in our personality.
The Red-Green arc of encirclement will be complete when we travel along the CPEC highway and reach Gwadar. Hidden somewhere in the horizon is the land mass of Iran, the 17th largest country and 16th most populous country in the world.
Iran is a land of paradoxes. It is a country torn between Theocracy and Modernity. It is a mostly mountainous country where poverty lives. Less populated are less poor. Most populated are poorer. The terrain discourages smooth flow of traffic, an infirmity which makes the FMCG goods dearer. The ruling elite are disproportionately aged. All men! 64% science/engineering degree holders are women. Moderate Iranians and some of the country’s leaders are cautiously moving towards pragmatism. An estimated 5-7 million Iranians live in exile. Their economic, scientific, scholarly and cultural achievements are being recognised now. There is hope for Iran. Or is there?
Iran has recently expressed its reservation regarding appointment of the former Army Chief of Pakistan, Rahil Sharif as the head of the Saudi led 39 nation Islamic Military alliance saying it is not satisfied with the alliance. “We are concerned about this issue……that it may impact the unity of Islamic countries” Iran’s Ambassador to Pakistan Mehdi Hoonardost declared.
The OIC is one organisation which takes care of annual stock taking of how many wars and how much damage has been done by member states to each other. It is a strange organisation. And now when Riyadh has pushed the idea of Islamic Army to be headed by Rahil Sharif, Iran leading the motley Shiite countries feels slighted. Riyadh banned Iranians from performing Haj pilgrimage, yet the delusion of unity is guiding Iran to fight ghost enemies. Iran doesn’t recognise her strength. It is not oil. It is its topography. Even a nuclear attack won’t harm it much. This realisation should guide Iran to rethink and differentiate between her real and hypothetical enemies. The deliverance for Iran is at hand!
The fear which dominates the Iranians is more about hypothetical threat from Israel than about the collapse of their own idea of prosperity. In 1950 David Ben Gurion’s Israel and Reza Shah Pahlavi were bastions of secular nationalism. After ’79 Iranian revolution eclipsed the secularism. Strange are the ways of the world! If Genghis Khan could not do much harm to Islam when the world was dangerously ruthless, how could a small Israeli State cause damage to Iran in the presence of the UN? The focus on hypothetical threat made Iran to forget about the prosperity of the people and in this way catastrophic economic consequences reached the kitchens of the Iranians. The fad of decorating itself with the possession of a nuclear weapon to get even with the ‘Sunni Islamic Bomb’ caused untold hardships for the people. The recent reapproachment shows that exhaustion has made them wiser. But a new threat is looming large. That is the worry!
On 16th April Turkey held a constitutional referendum to take legislative power from the Parliament. So we have an elected dictatorship which buries completely the ideas of the great son of Turkey-Mustafa Kamal Pasha. What is the reason for Turkey to abandon the Presidential System and decay into the well of the past? The answer is simple. As ISIS fades away into memory, Turkey has moved in to fill the vacuum. It has pretexts to justify its latest move. It can’t accept permanently the chaos on its southern borders. Russia can’t pacify the region. It is ham strung by Bosporous. Turkey will now move more and more towards creating the Ottoman Empire. The Middle East has fought too long to wait now. Turkey is a legitimate government. It has the capacity and appeal to force events in already fractious Arab societies. Syria will remain an area of interest for Turkey. And with a confused America we can forget about the end of hostilities in Syria.
Iran is a weak power. Syria will continue to drain its resources. Iran has interest in Iraq. But faced with a determined enemy it will be pushed in a situation where to solve a defensive problem it will be forced into increasing its offensive operations. That leaves Iran with only option to settle for peace with Israel if it is interested in the prosperity of its people.
What I am telling you will hardly carry conviction of the intellectual Militia in the academic institutions of the West or the US. God has blessed and enriched them immensely with the gift of the gab. So when their one policy fails they argue solutions in such a captivating way that the gullible people/countries accept the solution. Yet after sometime and investing tax payers money it usually fathers two more problems.
There are no sentimentalities involved in world affairs. On 17th April Afghan Ambassador declared “We will not allow India to use our land to be used against Pakistan!” Now this should break the hearts of those who are in charge of Afghan policy. I am not even amused. When Iran-Iraq war was at its peak, the CIA brokered a sale deed of scuds and ATM’s between Israel and Iran the proceeds of which ended somewhere else. I am talking about Contra-Rebel episode. Iran has to overcome her political pipe dream and work for the prosperity of her people. Iran has to listen!
Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel has stood the test of the time. It has even survived the Morsi period 2012-13. This has resulted in strengthening of Palestinian Authority. I am not sure about the fractious Palestinian community on the West Bank. Jordan has settled now.
War is the last thing on the mind of China. No Shylock would like to disturb peace for it disrupts the recovery of loans and revenue. But China, which does $75 billion trade with Saudis, has created a proxy by raising a 39 Muslim nation Militia under the Saudi umbrella decorated with the glitter of Pakistani nuclear buzzer. The ideologically orphaned Europe is a moving feast for the Salafis. Saudi Arabia has to settle economic/cash scores with England. Therefore as American Auschwitz charges towards Iran from the West and Saudi theological aggression from the South, Iran will fall directly into the lap of China. Chabahar and Gwadar will come closer than is expected by the world The fresh charges levied by Trump against Iran give us enough indications that Pakistan lobby in Langley has succeeded in prolonging American stay in Afghanistan.
Iran, therefore has to come to terms with its self defeating tricks which it weaves around theocratic supremacy. Wisdom lies in Iran mending fences with Israel. The secret of prosperity of Iran lies in the stability of Israel. It is here that India has to share its burden to play a peace maker between the two nations. The Indian, Iranian and Jewish diaspora in the US can play a great role in influencing the major political players in their respective countries. The American universities can also chip in to create an atmosphere for breeding peace in the region.
It is good that our foreign office has now overcome the curse of the bunker mentality and is working proactively. It has now to get engaged in Middle East diplomacy. That will be more profitable than getting bogged down in Afghanistan.
All peace loving people should alert the American institutions for war is coming!
PS: The first chapter was a wake up call. It was ignored. The 9th chapter was beating the buttocks! Silence! Next we shall have a party. Trust me!
End of Chapter 10