Geopolitical Notes From India
M D Nalapat
A media outlet has the right to have its own editorial policy. CNN is truly global, with more reach outside the US than other channels based in the world’s most powerful country. However, it is perhaps time for it to show a notice every few days underlining the reality of its being a champion of the Clinton wing of the Democratic Party. The guests it has on its shows are almost all visceral against President Donald John Trump, and usually use the same arguments as were tried out by Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential campaign. Repeatedly,” expert” voices are featured that have zero hesitation in calling the Chief Executive of the US a psychological wreck.
James Clapper led the intelligence community during the Obama years as another of the Clintonites chosen for high positions by the 44rth US President. He has repeatedly warned on CNN that Donald Trump is insane, and even that he spends sleepless nights worrying about whether the candidate who defeated Clapper’s favourite, Hillary Clinton, may start a nuclear war. He has been compared to Barry Goldwater, who lost to Lyndon Johnson because he was portrayed as a warmonger. Ironically, it was Johnson who greatly expanded the US role in Vietnam, and began a full-scale war that eventually ended in defeat at the hands of Ho Chi Minh, of course when Richard Nixon was President. In an attempt at humour, the Nobel Committee awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to Nixon’s Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, perhaps for his success in population control in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam through the sure-fire technique of carpet bombing, including with chemical agents.
Time after time, the Nobel Committee has shown that it operates fully within the ethos of the European Union, which at its core is a project that celebrates and protects ethnicity with about as much subtlety as the South African government before the freeing of Nelson Mandela. In such a construct, the member of a mafia in Bulgaria gets preference in practice over a doctor from Chennai in India where settling in a European country is concerned.
Even in the United Kingdom, a country where there still exists a fair amount of commonsense, Prime Minister Teresa May has in her present and past ministerial avatars introduced regulations that have made it almost impossible for even the brightest students from India in UK universities to find jobs in a country that Prime Minister May worked hard to keep within the EU. Not to mention a steep increase in taxes for nationals of citizens from India who live and work in the UK. Despite his being partially house-trained by Whitehall, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson would have been a much better choice for the top political job in the country than an individual who has “Little England” invisibly stamped all across her mind The latest attacks on Trump by the Beltway crowd which is distraught that Hillary is not the present occupant of the White House is that he is “soft on Kim Jong Un’. In fact, Trump’s policy is precisely what is needed to ensure that the needle of a peaceful resolution of the Korean nuclear crisis gets threaded by a solution other than the use of military force. Kim Jong Un needs to get reassured that he will not end up the way Saddam Hussein and Muammar Kaddafy did, and what has been planned for Bashar Assad by the Atlanticists.
Should he avoid provocative actions and open the door to the greater contacts with North Korea that South Korean President Moon is seeking, a summit between President Trump and Supreme Leader Kim would give the latter enough “face” among his army commanders to scale back progress in developing a nuclear and missile deterrent that is of intercontinental scale. Instead of being applauded for his breaking away from the failed diplomatic nostrums of the Clinton,Bush and “Clinbama” years, which is a better way of describing the Clinton-heavy Obama period, President Trump is being savaged. The reason is the worry that his approach may actually work, thereby exposing the shallow thinking of the many “experts” who collectively crafted US policy to North Korea since the 1990s.
In every case where Trump has an approach different from that of his predecessors, there has been a cacophony of protest from the “experts” who fashioned the policies that failed but which still continue on life support. For any admission of failure of such policies would throw a disconcerting light on the erroneous policies that Atlanticists on both sides of that ocean have championed for so long, and still do so, long after they have been shown to be disastrous. In the case of Syria,this columnist warned in several essays, including in this publication, that adding the fuel of ammunition and funding to the mix of armed fighters in that country would ensure such chaos as would create a flood of refugees into Europe. This was exactly the warning given about Libya.
Of course, these experts and the think-tanks and government departments in which they are based are adept at finding scapegoats. For example, they blame Bashar Assad for the exodus from Syria into Europe and not themselves, neglecting to point out that migration was almost non-existent when Assad has full control of a country that has now been divided into at least three entities The generals chosen by Trump are honest individuals, and this gives hope that they will accept the reality of the mistakes made in the past, and refuse to continue in the same rut as has cost the US trillions of dollars and hundreds of US military lives. Across the world, there is need for an approach that fits the parameters of Ground Reality in a way that Atlanticist policy, rooted in ethno-centric fantasies, has long forsaken.
The fear of the baying lynch mob that is hounding Trump (to applause from CNN and other media outlets that have made it their mission to run the US President out of town is not that Trump’s new policies will fail. Their fear is that they will succeed, thereby accelerating a move away from the stagnant pools of past policies sought to be continued into the present, including in the Trump presidency. Such successes will show them up, expose them for the blunderers they are. Small wonder that they are using the media outlets that have long showcased them and their views to seek to increase the heat on Trump so that either the US President quits or gets thrown out by the US Congress. Should they succeed, CNN would deserve a goodly share of the credit.
—The writer is Vice-Chair, Manipal Advanced Research Group, UNESCO Peace Chair & Professor of Geopolitics, Manipal University, Haryana State, India.
Geopolitical Notes From India