Tuesday, October 9, 2007

COSTS OF CONSCIENCE

At last a refreshingly candid column recounting the costs of misplaced morality and conscience that the country has had to pay, and still is paying, by first virtually surrendering Tibet to China and then allowing the Chinese to gain a strong foothold in Myanmar, which we ignored.

In an illuminating column in Mint on October 09, 2007, Dr Bharat Karnad, a professor in National Security Studies, Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, has questioned the projection of India’s democratic credentials to actively shun national interest in order to promote democracy in the extended neighbourhood, a demand that is being vociferously made by bleeding heart and juvenile analysts who have little understanding of what national interest entails. Dr Karnad argues that the actions of the military junta in Myanmar have had a far less heinous outcome than the marching of Chinese troops into Tibet with the aim of eliminating independent Tibet, to which, as I have said in my earlier posts, India meekly surrendered.

With the Chinese Army ensconced in Tibet and claiming the whole of Arunachal Pradesh as part of China, Dr Karnad argues that India simply cannot afford to allow the Chinese to consolidate their position further in Myanmar, which can be used by them for an easy entry into the plains of Brahmaputra in any future war. Quoting a Myanmar leader, he says that India has already ‘sold’ Myanmar to China, a country that has not allowed the internal developments in Myanmar to deflect it from pursuing its supreme national interests.

The views of Dr Karnad almost completely reflect what I had said in my post entitled ‘Democracy, Morality and National Interest’, where I had brought out that this ridiculous positing of national interest with the airy-fairy planks of democracy and morality, a legacy inherited from Nehru, has already cost us dear. Unfortunately, as I had said then, protecting Nehru’s legacy has taken precedence over protecting national interest.

The country has paid, and continues to pay, a very heavy price for the long dynastic rule of the Nehru-Gandhi family, which has not only prevented an objective analysis of the many ‘Himalayan Blunders’ of Nehru, but has also compelled us as a nation to praise and follow them, to the continuing detriment of national interest.

A nation which rightly aspires to claim a seat on the high table of global powers, cannot base its international responses solely on morality, which is the empty and helpless talk of the weak and the meek. In any case, our ‘morality’, which comes into play only when we justify our ineffective responses to the security challenges that we face, is quickly forgotten when it comes to our internal political processes and behaviour, which are marked almost wholly by immorality.

Our democracy has become a ‘Mockocracy’, as I had written earlier. Paradoxically, this degeneration does not upset some of our analysts and media luminaries because they do not want to be eased out of the intoxicating power circuit which seems to have consumed their conscience.

Yet, they unhesitatingly recommend an adolescent ‘moral’ and democratic response to the happenings in Myanmar by asking the country to decide as to on which side it wants to be when the monks come marching in there!