Re: Fwd: An interesting blog on Modi

Thanks for sharing this article. It is wonderful and very well written/analyzed.
Partha Ray

From: C Ganapathy <>
To: "" <>
Sent: Wednesday, April 16, 2014 1:12 PM
Subject: Fwd: An interesting blog on Modi

I generally do not share such messages with ex-bellionaires. However this blog is too good to miss and not share. 

The Economist is generally very objective and hence its recent article arguing against Narendra Modi and for Rahul Gandhi was puzzling. The following blog throws some light....
09 April 2014, 02:20 PM IST
Minhaz Merchant
The attitude of the West towards Narendra Modi reflects a deep political dilemma. Used to dealing with pliable dictators in the Middle-East and weak, corrupt governments in the Indian subcontinent, the West for the first time faces the prospect of a democratically elected leader – Modi – who is neither pliable nor corrupt.
Western media often hews slavishly (but with dexterous sophistry) to official Western foreign policy. That policy is often self-interested, disruptive and intrusive. It has propped up brutal Arab dictators, bankrolled a terrorist state like Pakistan and destablised countries ranging from Syria to Ukraine.
The US and its allies in Europe were delighted to work for ten years with a government like the United Progressive Alliance (UPA). A prime minister without real power like Manmohan Singh and a de facto leader like Sonia Gandhi with limited accountability but absolute power created a fertile geopolitical arena for Washington. 
The liberal power elite in Delhi was similarly co-opted. The Americans know how easily journalists, academics, think-tankers and NGOs fall for sponsored foreign seminars, gifts, donations and other rewards.
In return the Indian liberal, intellectual elite – much of it neither really liberal nor really intellectual – was compromised.
Modi provokes a hostile reaction in both these constituencies – Western governments and media on the one hand and their co-opted Indian quasi-elite on the other.
The vitriolic, at times vicious, attacks on Modi in the Western media are a product of the real fear that a Modi government will upend the fraudulent elite power structure in Delhi with geopolitical consequences well beyond India's borders.
Modi will be tough on Pakistan, pragmatic with China and cooperative with Japan. He will deal with the West on India's – not the West's – terms.
Grandees like Amartya Sen and his fellow-travellers in India and the West blanch at the very thought. Their idea of India is not most Indians' idea of India. It is a lesson they may learn the hard way on May 16.
As I wrote in my book, The New Clash of Civilizations: How the Contest Between America, China, India and Islam Will Shape Our Century, America's history provides many clues to its current dilemma over dealing with India's likely new political leadership.
The United States was founded by working-class families escaping religious persecution from newly-Protestant England 425 years ago. These English settlers (Britain as a nation did not yet exist) massacred indigenous Indians, appropriated their land and shipped in slave labour from Africa to work the cotton fields.
The US won independence in 1776 and as it grew more powerful, it invaded Mexico and by 1848 had annexed what are today California, Texas, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming and New Mexico. By the 1890s, it had colonized the Philippines and built a silent empire arching from the Pacific to the Atlantic.
After the Second World War it invaded Korea, Vietnam and Grenada, and propped up dictators and puppet-monarchs in Latin America and the Middle-East (including the early Saddam Hussein and the sybaritic Shah of Iran). It made a pact with the sheikhs of the post-Ottoman Middle-East to deny Arab citizens voting rights in return for US military protection, ostensibly against Israel but in reality against popular democratic movements in their own countries.
In 1932, the US and Britain established Saudi Arabia—custodian of the holy mosques in Mecca and Medina and a part of the Ottoman Empire since 1818—as an independent Islamic kingdom under the Wahhabi Al Saud dynasty.
Over the next thirty years, a pro-West military dictator or sheikh was installed in virtually every Arab country. Caught in a pincer between Anglo-Saxon politicians and Arab sheikhs, the Arab citizen had no democracy, few freedoms but, thanks to oil, reasonable prosperity.
The US continues to follow a foreign policy of ruthless self-interest in Asia to secure its geopolitical goals. But America is a declining power. By 2045, it will not only be relegated to the status of the world's third largest economy (after China and India), but it will also, for the first time in its history, become a non-white-majority country.
African-Americans, Latinos and Asians comprise nearly 30 per cent of America's population today. By 2045, that figure will rise to 51 per cent. The implications of this demographic shift will resonate across social, ethnic, economic and cultural fault lines.
As India's own demographic dividend kicks in, the new government's bargaining power with a declining US will grow—if South Block gets its strategy right.
That strategy involves deepening India's economic and diplomatic engagement with East Asia, Africa and Latin America, influencing the course of the post-US Af-Pak world and creating a secure environment in the Indian Ocean to the south and the central Asiatic republics to the north.
Can a putative Modi government achieve these objectives? The West and sections of its media would appear to hope not. Strong Indian leadership is anathema to its historical agenda which favours a geopolitically accommodative status quo.
That status quo is about to be demolished by an outsider. Modi will not give Western governments – or its media – the deference they have long taken for granted in the incestuous power warrens of Lutyens' Delhi.
Minhaz Merchant is an author, editor, columnist and publisher. A recipient of the Lady Jeejeebhoy prize for physics, his books include biographies of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and the late industrialist Aditya Birla. After three years with The Times of India and a year with India Today, he founded, at 25, Sterling Newspapers Pvt. Ltd., a pioneering publisher of six specialised journals, including Gentleman, a political and literary monthly (whose senior editors and columnists included David Davidar, Shashi Tharoor, L.K. Advani and Dom Moraes), and Business Computer, in technical collaboration with Dutch media group VNU (renamed The Nielsen Company in 2007). Minhaz is chairman and group editor-in-chief of Merchant Media Ltd. and founding-editor of Innovate, a magazine for US-based CEOs. He heads the group's think-tank, Global Intelligence Review. Having played tournament-level cricket and tennis – and rhythm guitar for his school rock band – he likes Dire Straits, R.E.M. and Sachin Tendulkar's straight drives in roughly reverse order. The views expressed in Head On are the author´s own.
kayar raghavan (london) says:
April 15,2014 at 01:39 PM IST
Brilliant piece. Could not have been better-said. Puts the at-best-dubious western journalists in appropriate light. Kudos to Minhaz.

Jhapat (India) says:
April 15,2014 at 07:09 AM IST
Brilliant comments. This was the reason why the UPA and so-called intellectuals (actually anti-nationals) are so frightened at the rise of Modi.

Mangat Sethi(Jind) says:
April 14,2014 at 01:27 PM IST
There is no dilemma in the west about Modi. They are perfectly clear. They don't forgive the murderers and communal people. How can they like Modi who has the blood of thousands of Muslim on his hands!

Japa(ND) says: 

Extreme, if not extremist, generalities battling each other below the belt leave little space for a balanced sense of truth, that is the most important problem of India today that exists in a gap of mind that was usually filled by foreign nations previously. That far I can go that this gap which we are so proud of should be filled by a sensible Indian. The test is whether that exists.

K P Sastry(Hyderabad) says:
April 10,2014 at 10:49 AM IST
Qudos to Mr Minaz Nerchant. He has hit the nail on its head. It is easy for Us to business with a corrupt regime in India. It is definitely difficult to do the same with Mr Modiji. That precisely is the reason why they are jittery at the prospect of Modiji coming to Power. America abused Modiji in no uncertain terms. Nataural that they be paid in in thier own coin.All this dependes on how striong Mr Modiji will emerge in this Agni Pareeksha. I wish he should come out 'victorius'. True no foreign much less the West will ever accept a strong India. This was eveident in 1965 when Mr Lalbahadur was at the helm and declared 'thast force will be met with force'. I live to see such a leader emerging again.

The Dust Buster(Mars) says:

MM has done it once again! The Americans who are in a grip of a phobia are now struck with a new type- Modi phobia. They are unable to do anything the State department as they do not know what will strike them.They are hoping for a 'third front' type govt as they have already written off Mauni and his chor cabinet. They know the Gandees have looted and allowed others to loot the country;s resources, they also know that more than 65% of the population wants a new avatar i.e. Modi and all this has become a problem which they wouldn't be able to solve at-least till the Obama man is in office. The rillion dollar question is what,how,when and where they can do the the unthinkable. Their end game is to placate India but HOW? It seems Obama will get out of the office without resolving this dilemma and may leave it to the next incumbent. The Americans want and are in the habit of learning the 'hard way' be it Europe.Vietnam,Brazil or for that matter any thing which is easy but they complicate themselves like the Devyani self goal !

Satya Narayana (Hyderabad) says:
April 10,2014 at 08:36 AM IST
Brilliant piece. The panic Modi seems to have triggered in the US can be judged from an article written by the Editorial Board of NYT, if you please, followed by at least two more critical pieces. MSM in the US is a well-disguised handmaiden of policy-makers. Similarly, The Times, Guardian and Economist have gone into panic mode warning the world about Modi. The truth as Merchant puts it, is the fear these big nations have, of dealing with a confident new India under Modi, as opposed to a slavish India under UPA. Suddenly, a Human Rights' Commission finds fault with India and goes cluck-cluck in fear about the days to come under Modi. Minorities are unsafe in India, did these butchers of Native Americans and enslavers and lynchers of Blacks say? What about Saudi Arabia, their trusted ally, where you can't carry a copy of the Bible or The Gita? Or Pakistan whose notorious blasphemy laws are all too well-known not to mention it's despicable treatment of Hindus. Let us hope Modi will indeed meet the US and others on India's terms. About time indeed.
Absolutely spot on Minhas. I would refer to an article written by one Roger Boyes in the Opinion columns of The Times, London of April 8th. It is titled "Modi will bring trouble at home and abroad". Beginning with calling Modi a "rabble-rousing so-called moderniser" and continues to claim that "Modi has now shown himself to be hard edged Hindu nationalist", Boyes goes on further to say that Modi "has the capacity to throw his country and neighbours off balance" and "polarise the world's most populous democracy", and that a "Modi-led government will rock the already very wobbly bilateral relationship with Pakistan ... unsettle the Muslim world ... and perhaps even accelerate the end of the global architecture of SE Asia". As far as China is concerned Boyes professes that "tensions can only grow under a Modi administration" quoting Modi in his Assam rally saying "Beijing would have to abandon its mindset of expansion". Boyes concludes "we can also warn our Indian friends, in case they haven't worked it out: Modi is potentially big trouble". Since, The Times is THE preferred newspaper choice among bigwigs of Whitehall, the seat of British power elite and bureaucracy which has always decided on major foreign policy issues since the peak of the empire, the message is loud and clear for a putative Modi government. Expect more terrorist strikes from across the border from Pakistan and no help from either USA or UK. Have the wrench thrown in the works in India's efforts to strengthen relations with Japan or SE Asia. And in case of any border confrontation or skirmishes with China on the Tibet border be prepared that India will be named the guilty party by the West. So, this is a curtain-raiser of what Western attitude would be towards Modi govt unless he toes their line and offers their MNCs enormously profitable sops at India's expense. Big challenges ahead Namo Bhai ... after May 16th..

manu11 (jpr) says:
April 09,2014 at 08:24 PM IST
I appreciate your analysis of west vis a-vis Modi.What really amazes me most are selective articles being put in to question Gujarat model by the so called Intellectuals of India/West, but they never mind questioning the dismal performance and corruption subjected by the current government, perhaps as it suits their vested interest,which you also have rightly highlighted.

Soma Visal(Bhoolog) says:
April 09,2014 at 07:31 PM IST277 Followers

The West will always see which is advantageous to it any where in the World, while the Indian politicos see which advantageous to them and their families! Super Indian dirty number democracy.

Soma Visal(Bhoolog) says: 
April 09,2014 at 07:24 PM IST277 Followers

It is said BJP's Hindustwa is communalism. How to call the Congress so called secularism? MUSLIMTWA?

annumallya(Mangalore) says:
April 10,2014 at 04:10 PM IST63 Followers

Maybe Islamtwa ?

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