| India and Israel Shitting with one Anus|
During my college years (1984-88) in India, there were a large
number of Palestinian students who came to India
for education. The Palestinian Intifada was at its peak then,
and India was one of the few places the Palestinians could
get education. I had sympathized with the P.L.O. then as I do now.
India was one of the few supporters of the Palestinian cause, by
not recognizing the nation of Israel and by voting against the
Israeli occupation in each of the UN resolutions.
A lot has happened since. Arafat has made new friends (and forgot
the old ones), India has established diplomatic relations with Israel, The
PLO has (supposedly) given up its armed fight,
and Indians emigrated to the USA in large numbers, establishing new
friendships & relationships between Jews and Hindus.
This week, Shimon Peres the Israeli statesman
travels to New Delhi to forge a deeper military and economic alliance. Both countries
are threatened by Islamic neighbors, and internal terrorism, although IMHO the context of the terrorism is completely different.
There are many areas where the two countries can work together. Computer software,
irrigation, urban development, and anti-terrorism come to my mind. India can also
show Israel how Muslims and non-Muslims can indeed live together.
Pakistan, and the Arab league of nations have a lot to be concerned about this
new shift of power. Israel has demanded inclusion of India
in UN Security council, and even in NATO (yes. NATO! Gee!!). Israel is selling military technology to India, and many Indians are entering into business aliances with the Israelis.
I sincerely welcome the new developments. But the Indian leadership has to
assure its Muslim citizens that India's long held values for the self-determination
of Palestinians are not being compromized.
This is a great opportunity for India
to play an elder statesman in the world politics leveraging its (once upon a time)
close ties with PLO as well as the new found friendship. Even a move towards peace in the Middle-East
will be a stepping stone for peace in the sub-continent.
|(Comments Disabled for Now. Sorry!)||First Written: Tuesday, January 8, 2002|
Last Modified: 1/29/2003