Monday, July 14, 2003
On Mon, 14 Jul 2003, Sivaguru Sankaridurg wrote:
Good News: India rejects US request to send troops.

Ramki wrote:
Why is it a Good news?

On Mon, 14 Jul 2003, Sivaguru Sankaridurg wrote:
:) I was expecting that question.
I felt that India should not go in and clean up the mess, bcos we were never in support for the war.
Moreover, no WMD's have been found so far. Considering CIA Tenet's owning up and our intial take on the matter, I think it was the right decision.
It is good bcos it is the right thing to do.

Ramki Wrote:
These are two different issues... yea, they lied... but now that the mess is out there, I think the right thing to do is to help settle the place down... Iraq is too important a challenge to be left to Bushies to handle.
Besides, if every one decides this way, don't u think the place is going to go down in one bad cycle of violence, sooner or later?

On Mon, 14 Jul 2003, Sivaguru Sankaridurg wrote:

Not our problem Ramki.
Dont take that statement as one of indifference.
I understand Iraq is our friend. We need to help them.
And we will be ready to help them (eg hospital in Najaf) when they ask for it OR when UN sanctions it.
I dont think we should go in with our peace-keeping troops just bcos US requested us.

There are many facets to this.

1. US-India bilateral relationship will not be affected by our saying "NO". I think we have gone past the stage where a single incident can affect the relationship between these two countries.
2. Iraq is our friend. It must not seem to the ppl of Iraq that we are acting at the behest of US. US lied .. everyone knows that. Let ppl in Iraq understand that we are their friends and we will help them.... independently OR under UN. Definitely not under US pressure.

3. Consider our stand on the issue. We did not support war... an unjust war at that. Why should India clean up the mess left by US ? Not our problem.
4. There was also a lot of talk that US wants India's help for two reasons.
a. Indian soldiers get paid lesser -- therefore the cost will be lesser.
b. US soldiers are getting killed in sporadic acts of violence now. To avoid this.

The second reason is seen as tantamount to saying that "Indian soldiers are expendible".
If you dont want to put it that way ... then you can say that there is no need to put Indian lives (soldiers) at risk for an act of war that we did not support.

5. What is our payback ? Even if we had decided to send our troops, what could we get back in return. Would it be worth it ?

I disagree with the point you make. You are saying that everyone might think this way and Iraq would go down. I interpret it differently. I think that it is just a question of US being stubborn to the core. They do not want to let UN to handle it for known reasons. It all comes down to this .. doesnt it. ?

I bet most countries will be willing to help if UN gives the green flag.

US knows it screwed up -- let them accept it. Let them give control to UN. Then we will all help. Everybody will help -- I assure you, there will be no shortage of help to Iraq.

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