Mr. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, you are poised at a very critical juncture in world politics from where you can seize the moment to drive home a hard-hitting, long overdue political message to America: that America must reinstate the cardinal principle of national sovereignty as the basis for bilateral relations with India. Which means no interference under any pretext in internal matters. Or you can choose the path of least resistance and travel to America in September. But this latter path will involve ignoring public opinion which presents very sound reasons for why you should not attend the annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, and why you should not go to Washington.
The UNSC, despite the power vested with it collectively and with each of the five permanent members, did not stand up to America and chose instead to stain its hands with the blood of Iraqi children, and must close shop.
The United Nations must comprise only the General Assembly so that all member countries of the world get to vote on policies and decisions. There is no better time than now. Mr. Prime Minister you can additionally call for relocating the United Nations to Tokyo or Mumbai because as things stand, the world does not know where America ends and the UN begins.
If America insists it has the inalienable right to interfere in our internal matters and arrogates to itself retributive powers to bring us down to our knees, and thinks India’s national sovereignty is dispensable, then this is the time to turn the tables on America.
Mr. Modi, as Prime Minister of the world’s largest democracy, you must now take the lead in world affairs and make America accountable for Iraq. India is willing to overlook American depredations in other parts of the world including the shenanigans of the CIA Dirty Tricks Department, if you will seek explanations from America for Iraq before any smile-it-all-away pictures in front of the White House.
Washing the memory clean
As of May 15, 2014, Mr. Prime Minister you were a political untouchable for the American government. But in the afternoon of May 16, 2014, as the winds of change that were shaking India began to blow into America, everyone in the American establishment, from the President to the janitor, simply washed the past clean with no memory of the 2002 Gujarat riots or the 12 persistent years of calumny and scurrilous propaganda that they had unleashed against you. America had wiped its memory clean and was prepared to do business with you because this amnesia is in America’s economic interests.
But Indians have an elephantine memory Mr. Prime Minister and they do not forget. Since there is still some haziness about whether you will travel to the US or not, I propose to juxtapose the Gujarat riots and the attendant Goebelssian propaganda, to what happened to Iraq from 1990 onwards and what is happening to Iraqis today because of America’s desire to control the world politically and wield economic control over world resources.
The world has not forgotten America’s war against the people of Iraq since 1990 even if it has collectively has shown remarkable disinclination to speak the truth about the UNSC-authorised total economic and financial embargo against Iraq for thirteen years and America’s unjustified invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003.
Nor has the world demonstrated collective international will to reprimand the then UN Secretary-General and American Presidents Clinton and Bush Jr. The American President and his then Secretary of State must also be tried for lying to the American people and to the world about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction and his personal connection with Al Qaeda.
But you are made of sterner stuff Mr. Prime Minister Modi, and we sincerely hope that you will not fight shy of confronting the truth about how America and America alone is responsible for killing not one thousand or five thousand but more than 500,000 Iraqi children alone besides another 120,000 adult Iraqis between 1990 and 2003 and for having laid to waste a once proud and prosperous country.
There is no saying that America will not try the same trick with India, if God forbid, India at any time has a weak and/or willing leadership which will allow it to happen. China and Russia, despite being members of the UN Security Council with veto powers, could not and did not try and stop the economic and financial embargo, and could not or did not save Iraq from utter ruin.
America’s lies against Narendra Modi
Let’s examine America’s case against you, Mr. Prime Minister Modi:
- You were responsible for the 2500 Muslims killed and 100,000 displaced during the Gujarat riots
- That you played Nero when Gujarat burned
- That you failed to deploy the army on time
- That your government remained mute spectator and
- That the police chose not to act to quell the riots.
“Hindus killed as many as 2500 mostly Muslims, forced 100,000 to flee and destroyed homes. Christians were also killed and churches demolished. India’s National Human Rights Commission cited premeditated violence by Hindu nationalists, complicity by state government officials and police inaction”.http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com/2013/11/12/the-two-faces-of-india/
This, Mr. Prime Minister, is classic American ploy – diminish the numbers of victims when America is perpetrator of genocide and violence but exaggerate the numbers when it wants to pin the blame on its enemy. This so-called report was penned by Katrina Lantos Swett, Vice Chairwoman of the USCIRF and Mary Ann Glendon, USCIRF Commissioner as recently as November 12, 2013, immediately after the BJP declared you as their Prime Ministerial candidate.
The segment quoted above is emblematic not just of the USCIRF fable but the calumny unleashed against you Mr. Prime Minister and India’s Hindus. The USCIRF report and the 12 years of libel about the Gujarat riots were relentlessly anti-Hindu in their slant and leaned unashamedly towards making victims only of Muslims in the Gujarat riots. It deliberately ignored the premeditated killing of 57 Hindu pilgrims in Godhra station, also ignored the Hindus killed in retaliatory Muslim violence and ignored the number of Hindus killed in police firing. The USCIRF, not wanting to let go of an excellent opportunity to push in Christians as victims, also says churches were demolished and Christians were also killed in the riots, something which even the virulently anti-Modi Indian media has not mentioned so far!
Choosing to ride their favourite hobby horse, freedom of religion and conscience, the USCIRF report states as if the Christian “right” to evangelise and convert Hindus is an unassailable right. The USCIRF is an American bipartisan creature which was crafted as a response after Russia refused to allow the Catholic and Protestant churches from America and Europe to open shop on Russian soil after the disintegration of the Soviet Union.
The Russian Orthodox Church did not want the Vatican or the World Council of Churches to prey upon its flock and correctly so. Since the Pope played a very large role in bringing down the Soviet Union, America supported the Vatican’s demand that Russia allow freedom of religion and conscience for her people and thus was born the USCIRF. America has never pretended to be fair, neutral or objective Mr. Prime Minister in its dealings with other countries. With America what you see is what you get – a global bully with military might and with self-aggrandising power to enforce its will.
America’s underlying principle in foreign affairs and strategic affairs is that whatever happens anywhere in the world impacts American interests even if the path taken by this presumption to arrive at this conclusion is convoluted and tortuous. And when there are murmurs of American hand here or there America and American think tanks have dismissed them as “conspiracy theories”. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2007389/Five-Russian-scientists-helped-Iran-nuclear-secrets-killed-tragic-plane-crash.html
Let us however look at the facts which present a different picture of the Gujarat riots, facts as presented by the Justice Tewatia Commission Report. http://www.gujaratriots.com/index.php/2010/04/justice-tewatia-committee-report/
Lies exposed about Gujarat riots
- Riots began on 27th February
- On the same day, the Gujarat government asks the Central Government to send armed forces to be deployed in Gujarat
- By 11 AM on the 1st March, in less than 72 hours, the army is deployed in sensitive locations
- Spontaneous riots which erupted on 27th February are controlled within four days, followed later by planned retaliatory violence and rioting by Muslim mobs against police and army personnel for nearly a month until the beginning of April. No, the Indian media never mentioned this little detail and neither did the USCIRF or the US State Department.
- Total number of people killed in the first five days – 741 of which 257 were Hindus including 57 Hindus killed in the Sabarmati Express
- Total number of people arrested was 54,177 of which only 12,341 were Muslims. The police killed 204 persons in the drive to quell the riots and here again, more Hindus were killed in police firing than Muslims. This exposes the persistent and self-serving American falsehood that you Mr. Prime Minister, as Gujarat Chief Minister and your police stood by and allowed the riots to continue merrily in a manner where only Muslims and Christians were killed
- Total number of people displaced during the riots, both Hindus and Muslims, precisely and not vaguely, was 113,697 of which 68,100 alone were in Ahmedabad. All displaced people were housed in 103 relief camps across the state. By August 2003, only around 9000 persons living in four camps had not returned to their homes.
How America and the UN killed half a million Iraqi children
Now contrast the number of people killed in the Gujarat riots in one month, which is under one thousand, to the number of children and ordinary Iraqis killed over a period of thirteen long years of sanctions: 1.8 million Iraqis (and these are UNICEF numbers) of which half a million were children under the age of five! It is not for America to point fingers at you Mr. Prime Minister.
No country Mr. Prime Minister, not the western world, no Islamic country, not India or G7, APEC or ASEAN, SAARC or BRICS, no country in any continent has summoned the courage to officially and publicly express grief for the dead children of Iraq, nor one word of condemnation against America and the UNSC for their economic and financial embargo which may have isolated Saddam Hussein but also knowingly and cynically allowed Iraq’s children to die of pandemic diseases and acute malnutrition.
This is the abject state of weakness to which America has reduced all countries including India Mr. Prime Minister. India must make reparations for its cowardly and shameful silence and make America accountable now. Prime Minister Modi, weigh this silence with the great noise that is now being made over the shooting down of MH 17. Tragic as the deaths are of the passengers killed in this ill-fated flight, where was this shouting brigade when America and the United Nations were wreaking death and devastation in Iraq?
Speaking of MH17, we may never know the truth of why this plane had to fly over Ukranian skies knowing well enough that Ukraine was in the grip of a civil war.
Remember the Korean Air flight 007 which a Soviet SU-5 interceptor was forced to shoot down because the Korean airplane “had strayed” into Russian air space on its way from Anchorage, Alaska to Seoul? The Korean plane was not shot down by the Soviet air force interceptor soon after being sighted in Russian air space. The Korean airplane was tracked by the interceptor for several hours before being shot down.
Mr. Prime Minister, it is pertinent here to pay heed to what the then American President said in his address to the nation soon after Korean Air Flight 007 was shot down killing all 269 persons on board. Even a child raised on modern spy fiction will tell you that it is well within the realms of Cold War politics to have used a commercial airplane for espionage purposes. President Reagan had no explanations to why and how a commercial airplane making routine flights in and out of the Soviet Union should “stray” into Soviet air space and remain in that condition without seeking to end it.
Provoking the target country to take an extreme step which then provides the Americans with the opportunity and the context to mount a vilifying campaign against the political leadership is classic CIA Dirty Tricks Department modus operandi. Indeed, MH17 was collateral damage in America’s covert war against Putin. Putin is the target and Stratfor’s analytical article “Can Putin survive?” dated July 21, 2014 is a dead giveaway of the direction in which America is blowing the Ukanian wind. http://www.stratfor.com/weekly/can-putin-survive?utm_source=freelist-f&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20140721&utm_term=Gweekly&utm_content=readmore#axzz38Cp8WX5n
Back then, this is how President Reagan described the Soviet action in downing the Korean aircraft in 1983:
“And make no mistake about it, this attack was not just against ourselves or the Republic of Korea. This was the Soviet Union against the world and the moral precepts which guide human relations among people everywhere. It was an act of barbarism, born of a society which wantonly disregards individual rights and the value of human life and seeks constantly to expand and dominate other nations.” https://patriotpost.us/articles/27576
And Reagan’s words describe perfectly the American action in 1988 when US Navy guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes shot down an Iranian commercial flight IR 655 carrying 290 passengers aboard, over the Strait of Hormuz. The airplane was flying the Bandar Abbas-Dubai route over the strait but what were US destroyers doing in those waters? And why did they shoot down the civilian plane?http://www.iranchamber.com/history/articles/shootingdown_iranair_flight655.php
Mr. Prime Minister, during your election campaign, you promised not only change but also promised to make India strong. It is a sign of strength when under your leadership this nation will stand on the side of a strong India and will begin to ask questions of America and the UN that have not been asked so far.
Let the UN first be compelled by you, Mr. Prime Minister, to accept that the thirteen year long economic and financial embargo against Iraq was a terrible mistake, and a violation of the UN Charter and everything else that the UN says it stands for.
It is only after such a public acceptance of guilt has been made Mr. Prime Minister can a semblance of respectability return to the UN, that you may consider addressing the UNGA.
Given all this Mr. Prime Minister, not only should you not go to New York to address the UNGA and then to Washington to shake President Obama’s hand, you must call for dismantling the UNSC and make a call to the international community to make America accountable for Iraq and other similar misadventures that have caused untold death and destruction across the world.
Radha Rajan is a Chennai-based political analyst. She is also author and animal activist.