This is a heated discussion that took place today in the ‘India Eye’ program hosted by Bharat Bhushan on Blueticknews on the net. It pitted two establishment types against me. Whose position is more protective of the national interest is for the viewers to judge, of course. But it is remarkable how the Establishment reps (including Yashwant Sinha — watch the video of the book launch panel discussion posted earlier) and Bhaskar, in particular, here who seem a little too overwhelmed by India’s limitations than are convinced by its inherent strengths. Strengths: Like, its unmatchable location and resources in the expanse of the Indo-Pacific region and, in the event, its indispensability to the US, and access to the world’s 2nd largest market. It is therefore, the sort of hard leverage that should have been wielded by Delhi to demand, at a minimum, of the US that India be given absolute waiver on CAATSA sanctions for anything India will do in the external realm as the basic condition for signing the COMCASA and partnering to the extent GOI deems, at any moment in time, to be beneficial to the countryh’s national interest. (This is one of the many themes developed, incidentally, in my book.) It is such thinking that’s being contested by Bhaskar and his ilk.
These types instill fear in the Indian population about the horrible things that would befall India if it doesn’t toe the American line, or fall in line with Washington. Anything more defeatist is hard to imagine. They end up doing most of the hard work work for the US of pulling India — the government and the people — into the US orbit. God save India from the Indian policy establishment (compromised by the US — which subject is tackled in a section of my new book ‘Staggering Forward’).