By PRATYUSH CHANDRA
August 5 / 6, 2006, CounterPunch.ORG, Weekend Edition
The chameleon character of Indian fascism does not allow us to rely on its views except on its consistent barbaric Hinduism. However, it is sometimes worthwhile to go through the weekly magazine, ORGANISER, of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), India's mother fascist organization, to understand how and why it reacts to certain issues in certain manner. One such interesting piece is the edit on the US-India nuclear deal published in this weekly (July 09, 2006).
When one starts reading this editorial, it seems to be a standard write up from an organisation in opposition jealously opposing the achievements of the party in power. It talks about anonymous skeptics saying, "that there are many hidden clauses perhaps in the deal", and finds ruling government's unilateralism "as most worrying". It goes to the extent of accusing the government of destroying "the hard work of Indian scientists with a deal that permits outside interference that emasculates its nuclear options in military and civil sectors. This deal has made India perpetually dependent on the US on nuclear energy. The deal has put restrictions on India's capacity to have a minimum nuclear deterrent capability." All these are standard salvos targeted against the deal by both the left and the right.
Definitely, unilateralism as such is not a problem for the RSS. Unilateralism was far graver when the RSS' political wing – the BJP led government exploded nuclear bombs at Pokhran in 1998, and made the parties then in opposition, which included the Congress that leads the ruling coalition presently, desperate for credits at least for researches that made India nuclear-capable. Undeniably, what is happening between India and the US today, including the deal, has a strong foundation in the past, especially the Vajpayee Government. Hence, it is natural for the BJP and RSS to accuse the UPA government for attempting to take all the credits for the deal. So the edit asserts, "[T]he NDA government under Atal Behari Vajpayee proudly declared India a nuclear power in 1998. That is a process which has culminated in the present deal."
The edit makes it a point to differentiate the RSS-BJP's criticism from the Communist opposition to the deal. And in this zeal it clears that it does not have anything to say against the deal.
This feeble attack on the deal is surpassed by the tremendous appreciation expressed after the two introductory paragraphs. Whatever lacuna it finds with regard to minimum deterrence etc "can be taken care of if the Indian government insists, when the US legislation that seeks to exempt India from the 1954 Atomic Energy Act is taken up in the full floor of the House of Representatives this month end". On the whole, the "deal has presented India with a new opportunity. The other option was to continue with its nuclear isolation, and perpetually be in competition with Pakistan".
Typically, the edit finds pride in Bush supposedly taking the deal "as his most important foreign policy success". And "skeptical Democrats don't want to be seen as voting against India", that is why they are supporting the deal. What a revelation or pity! The American politicians nowadays go into such deals not only because of any strategic significance attached to the deal, but more because they are afraid of being seen opposing it. Then, definitely, "it only proves India's growing clout as a world power. This should make India proud." And all those who are opposing the deal must be part of the "pro-Pakistan lobby" or "inspired by the Islamabad-Beijing nexus."
But most revealing is the final ecstatic couplet: "American companies and the NRIs [Non-Resident Indians] lobbied hard with hostile Congressmen to make the deal possible. The bottom line is enlightened national interest."
What does one make out of this final paragraph in the cacophonous arrangements of arguments in the edit? When the domestic opposition is "pro-Pakistani", American companies have "enlightened national [Indian=Aryan] interest" in mind!
Certainly, the CEOs of American companies must have found that they are from some lost tribe of Aryans; only then they could find "enlightened national interests" in making the deal possible.
Pratyush Chandra can be reached at: [email protected]