Sunday, July 06, 2003
Re: India in Iraq

Frankly, I am trying to see the points on both sides of the debate... I am not willing to consider lack of precedent as a strong argument against. When comtemplating new strategies, and new ambitions, a nation has to take unprecedented steps. So, that argument, to me, seems weak. However, the genuine fear that we would be walking into a quagmire sure sounds a stronger argument.

On the other side, our presence in Iraq (esp the south) could be a good investment - precedent if u may - for the future. As I see it, the future - whether or not Bush wins in 2004, holds a lot more instances of such humanitarian interventions. Remember, in spite of not finding the WMDs, there is no howl of protest because the war is now projected as a humanitarian intervention. A point worth noting here. While the Cheney-Rumsfeld-Wolfowitz cabal is constantly blamed for taking US into an unnecessary war, the basic arguments for humanitarian intervention to advance democratization in different parts of the world, promoting 'democratic peace', are all liberal concepts. In some sense, at least the intellectual base of this admn - the Wolfowitz Brigade are indeed liberals of a gone day. In fact, you could directly trace back these benovolent hegemony ideas to Teddy Roosevelt, who was egged on by the then liberals. Even in the post-cold war era, the first intervention unapproved by the UN was in Kosovo - ordered by a Democrat. Now, without going into the merits and demerits of the policy, we could safely assume that this policy would continue, mutatis mutandis. In that case, India would have to risk it and wade into it, messy as it may be.

Now, I would really like to hear the others!


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