Discussion:
Arrogance of power must be countered
(too old to reply)
and/or www.mantra.com/jai (Dr. Jai Maharaj)
2014-01-17 05:00:25 UTC
Permalink
ARROGANCE OF POWER MUST BE COUNTERED

By Hiranmay Karlekar
Op-Ed
The Pioneer
http://www.dailypioneer.com
Thursday, January 16, 2014

The US should stop hectoring the Dhaka regime on the
latter's responsibilities. Bangladesh has shown ability
to cope with many violent attempts to derail democracy

"Power tends to confuse itself with virtue and a great
nation is peculiarly susceptible to the idea that its
power is a sign of God's favour, conferring upon it a
special responsibility for other nations...to remake
them, that is, in its own shining image. Power ...tends
also take itself for omnipotence." How many Americans
today remember these words or the name of the author? The
latter also wrote, "The attitude above all others which I
feel sure is no longer valid is the arrogance of power,
the tendency of great nations to equate power with virtue
and major responsibilities with a universal mission."

The author was J William Fulbright and the title of the
book, Arrogance of Power. The central message of the
book, written in the context of the Vietnam War, American
participation in which Senator Fulbright vigorously
opposed, has a general applicability even today. I have
been reminded of it by two developments that are still
unfolding - the storm over the arrest and strip search of
India's former Deputy Consul General in New York, Ms
Devyani Khobragade, and the United States' strident and
denunciatory stance over the January 5 parliamentary
election in Bangladesh.

Clearly, the United States did not anticipate India's
tough stand on Ms Khobragade's wanton humiliation. It
perhaps believed that New Delhi would swallow it with a
token protest, as it did when former President APJ Abdul
Kalam was frisked twice, then Union Minister for Defence
George Fernandes and ambassador, Ms Meera Shankar were
patted down, and its permanent representative to the
United Nations, Mr Hardeep Puri, was detained at an
American airport for refusing to take off his turban.

The US State Department, which sanctioned Ms Khobragade's
arrest, did not see the indignation simmering in India
over these incidents as well as several policy decisions
by Washington regarding Afghanistan, Pakistan and
Bangladesh, which were sharply detrimental to India's
interests. The Khobragade incident came as the last
straw. The arrogance that has become a part of the active
sub-conscious of many American policymakers had
apparently blinded them to ground realities, especially
the fact that India is an intensely proud nation,
conscious of its growing power and importance, which will
not take an insult to an Indian diplomat or leader
meekly. The result is a bitter interlude which may still
substantially derail a relationship that promised so
much.

One sees the same arrogance at work in Bangladesh where
the American Ambassador Dan Mozena and British High
Commissioner Robert Gibson are behaving like a Roman
proconsul and a British Viceroy respectively - sharply
criticising the election of January 5 at Press
conferences, insisting on fresh polls and hectoring the
country's political leadership about its
responsibilities. How would Americans have reacted if
Bangladesh's Ambassador in Washington had gone about
openly in the US condemning the controversial election in
Florida that contributed to Mr George Bush's election as
US President in 2000?

The argument that Bangladesh needs to be told what to do
will not wash. To quote Fulbright again, "What I do
question is the ability of the United States or any other
Western nation to go into a small, alien, underdeveloped
Asian nation and create stability where there is chaos,
the will to fight where there is defeatism, democracy
where there is no tradition of it, and honest Government
where corruption is almost a way of life.""

Bangladesh is small and relatively less developed. Like
many other Third World countries, it has a serious
corruption problem. But it has shown a remarkable ability
to cope with a prolonged and violent attempt to derail
its democracy and hold an election in the teeth of
frightening odds. It can run its own affairs without
external meddling.

More at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/columnists/oped/arrogance-of-power-must-be-countered.html

Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi
Om Shanti

http://groups.google.com/group/alt.fan.jai-maharaj
and/or www.mantra.com/jai (Dr. Jai Maharaj)
2014-01-17 05:01:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by and/or www.mantra.com/jai (Dr. Jai Maharaj)
ARROGANCE OF POWER MUST BE COUNTERED
By Hiranmay Karlekar
Op-Ed
The Pioneer
http://www.dailypioneer.com
Thursday, January 16, 2014
The US should stop hectoring the Dhaka regime on the
latter's responsibilities. Bangladesh has shown ability
to cope with many violent attempts to derail democracy
"Power tends to confuse itself with virtue and a great
nation is peculiarly susceptible to the idea that its
power is a sign of God's favour, conferring upon it a
special responsibility for other nations...to remake
them, that is, in its own shining image. Power ...tends
also take itself for omnipotence." How many Americans
today remember these words or the name of the author? The
latter also wrote, "The attitude above all others which I
feel sure is no longer valid is the arrogance of power,
the tendency of great nations to equate power with virtue
and major responsibilities with a universal mission."
The author was J William Fulbright and the title of the
book, Arrogance of Power. The central message of the
book, written in the context of the Vietnam War, American
participation in which Senator Fulbright vigorously
opposed, has a general applicability even today. I have
been reminded of it by two developments that are still
unfolding - the storm over the arrest and strip search of
India's former Deputy Consul General in New York, Ms
Devyani Khobragade, and the United States' strident and
denunciatory stance over the January 5 parliamentary
election in Bangladesh.
Clearly, the United States did not anticipate India's
tough stand on Ms Khobragade's wanton humiliation. It
perhaps believed that New Delhi would swallow it with a
token protest, as it did when former President APJ Abdul
Kalam was frisked twice, then Union Minister for Defence
George Fernandes and ambassador, Ms Meera Shankar were
patted down, and its permanent representative to the
United Nations, Mr Hardeep Puri, was detained at an
American airport for refusing to take off his turban.
The US State Department, which sanctioned Ms Khobragade's
arrest, did not see the indignation simmering in India
over these incidents as well as several policy decisions
by Washington regarding Afghanistan, Pakistan and
Bangladesh, which were sharply detrimental to India's
interests. The Khobragade incident came as the last
straw. The arrogance that has become a part of the active
sub-conscious of many American policymakers had
apparently blinded them to ground realities, especially
the fact that India is an intensely proud nation,
conscious of its growing power and importance, which will
not take an insult to an Indian diplomat or leader
meekly. The result is a bitter interlude which may still
substantially derail a relationship that promised so
much.
One sees the same arrogance at work in Bangladesh where
the American Ambassador Dan Mozena and British High
Commissioner Robert Gibson are behaving like a Roman
proconsul and a British Viceroy respectively - sharply
criticising the election of January 5 at Press
conferences, insisting on fresh polls and hectoring the
country's political leadership about its
responsibilities. How would Americans have reacted if
Bangladesh's Ambassador in Washington had gone about
openly in the US condemning the controversial election in
Florida that contributed to Mr George Bush's election as
US President in 2000?
The argument that Bangladesh needs to be told what to do
will not wash. To quote Fulbright again, "What I do
question is the ability of the United States or any other
Western nation to go into a small, alien, underdeveloped
Asian nation and create stability where there is chaos,
the will to fight where there is defeatism, democracy
where there is no tradition of it, and honest Government
where corruption is almost a way of life.""
Bangladesh is small and relatively less developed. Like
many other Third World countries, it has a serious
corruption problem. But it has shown a remarkable ability
to cope with a prolonged and violent attempt to derail
its democracy and hold an election in the teeth of
frightening odds. It can run its own affairs without
external meddling.
http://www.dailypioneer.com/columnists/oped/arrogance-of-power-must-be-countered.html

Forwarded post:

This is a time for India to show it's neighbour
Bangladesh, that it is concerned about it and tell US and
UK - get lost, don't meddle and do not bring Taliban to
bangladesh. but will India do it, no, it is concerned
about politicians who are now zamindars and autocrats,
more concerned about amassing wealth.

Posted by Anil Gupta

End of forwarded post.

Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi
Om Shanti

http://groups.google.com/group/alt.fan.jai-maharaj

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