Winds Change - Washington to Delhi to Kabul
The hocus pocus of the electoral process goes on, first in Afghanistan, marred with thousands of complains of fraud and intimidation, and now in India, that has been seasoned with bribes and tampering in decades of experience now, the fruits of the so-called democracy that are assuredly strangulated before their birth are hanging low on the two nations.
Democracy is a human strategy reliant totally on the just deliverance of the electoral process; if that is not ensured it will not work in even the most improvised nations. Even the United States can be in doubts in this matter, where Obama has expressed his fears in the method elections are being conducted in the US, he said, 'The right to vote is threatened today in a way that it has not been since the Voting Rights Act became law nearly five decades ago'.
The complexity of regional imbalance stands at its apex as global and regional bounty hunters insist on playing a part in the economic and political infrastructure of Afghanistan. The US/NATO with their immense network of NGOs deem themselves the real heroes of the happiness of Afghanistan; and the Indian with their multibillion economic plans for Afghanistan deem themselves as the true insurers of a future for Afghanistan. One is forced to think if all these who hurl upon Afghanistan with their slogans of peace, stability and democracy, love everything that is Afghanistan except the Afghan’s themselves. They love to make infrastructure, roads and gas lines, but they do not deem the Afghan fit enough to decide what is good or bad for him/her. That is the reason why it is ensured by way of rigging that only those candidates come to the top that will pursue the policies of these self-aggrandized non-state sympathizers. That is the reason why the whole south eastern half of the country is labeled as Taliban- influenced, where no substantial balloting can be expected to take place.
Mullah Tarakhel Mohammadi, a parliamentarian explained 'We’re afraid, because in the south and east there is no security, and no one will be able to vote. Only the north can vote… What would happen then? Maybe another civil war.
Showing that the last 10 years have effectively been used to strengthen the divide between the North and the South, practically fortifying the fear in the heart of the Northern Alliance that they would not survive a single day without the support of the NATO and deliberately keeping the Pashtuns of the South and East at the edge and at wars with their brethren; all for the good perhaps, as their enmity provides the space for the US and India to make their nests, wherefrom they can make everything good to happen for Afghanistan.
The Afghan elections thus serve to keep the divide and instability permanent, which helps exclude the Zero Option and necessitates the need for the Northern Alliance to strengthen its ties with Iran on the Shia-plea, with India on the development-plea and the US on the Taliban-plea.
The so–called democratic process thus snatches away the very right to exercise their will away from the Afghan people.
Meanwhile India seems tilted towards Modi’s BJP this time. Though the strategic foreign policy is dictated by the Military of the country, because of which reason it remains the same, come BJP, Congress or the Aam Adammi party, but surely there will be seem a change in the aggressiveness with which the policy is taken forward by each one.
Aam Adammi party’s oblivion to the extension of the electoral process in the held vale of Kashmir, a place demanding and awaiting a referendum for decades now, show its disconcert with the foreign policy of the country. On the other hand Modi is expected to move the Hindutva mindset forward, with aggression and stealth, in its dealing with both Pakistan and Kashmir – changing from an overtly passive stance of the Congress that poses for Amman Ki Aasha while stabbing our backs via covert intrusions and which offers the dream of multibillion dollars projects to Kashmir in return to their willful subjugation towards them – to an outwardly aggravating stance while following more or less the same hegemonic approach towards most of its neighbors.
BJP has shown signs of aggression from the outset by picking extreme hindutva upholders in their candidacy, like ex- Chief of Army Staff V.K. Singh, who has commanded the so-called counter-insurgency forces that have served to quell many discontented sectors of the Indian society with force. If such people will be there to shoulder Modi aka the Butcher of Gujarat, in matters of defense and strategic policy, then surely the time for the revival of Chankiya Doctrine, who advised the Hindus centuries ago not to make friends with their neighbors, may have neared.
Kautilya Chanakya (died 283BC) said, "Your neighbor is your natural enemy and your neighbor’s neighbor your friend…” His doctrines are held highly in Hindutva thinking and many, like National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon have been lobbying it in the military circles, he said in 2012, “Kautilya’s book is more than just a power maximisation or internal dominance strategy for a state. He has an almost modern sense of the higher purpose of the state and of the limits of power”.
Nevertheless the real test for the new governments in both Afghanistan and India lies in their ability to coup up with the US/NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan. The Zero-Option will certainly be a signal for India to pack their bags too from the Afghan soil. Perhaps there is a lesson here for the Hindutva thinking that even the neighbor of your neighbor will not be their friend, if they come with the policy of ‘divide and exploit’.
But if the Zero-Option is just a hoax and the US will not want to lose their grip on the symbolic land of imperial success, especially at the time when its superpower status is already being questioned by many, then perhaps these elections would serve to bring a dawn of another era of un-willful paralysis of the will and progress of the real Afghan people.