Hindutva Zionism Bhai Bhai

India became Israeli arms industry's prized market and they deputed "scores of agents" to persuade the Indian armed forces in to buying weapons resulting in large scale bribes among civil servants and politicians. The ideological bond between Zionism and Hindutva made India as the second largest trade partner for Israel in Asia, after China. This blog will expose the acts of world's weapon industry and their "SWADESHI" agents in India.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Beware the 'new order' Israel is imposing

By Siddharth Varadarajan

July 31, 2006, The Hindu

ON JULY 28, 1989, a detachment of heavily armed Israeli commandos descended upon the southern Lebanese village of Jibchit. The time was 2 a.m. They burst into the home of Sheikh Abdul Karim Obeid, leader of the Hizbollah militia, beat up his wife, and shot dead a neighbour before bundling the Sheikh and two other men into a helicopter. One of those seized was a young man named Hashem Fahaf who had no connection to Hizbollah, the other was the Sheikh's bodyguard.

According to the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which carries a helpful if damning account of the kidnapping on its website, "Israel had hoped to use the sheikh as a card to affect an exchange of prisoners and hostages [held by Hizbollah] in return for all Shiites held by it."

So brazen was Israel's action that the United Nations Security Council unanimously passed a resolution (No. 638) calling for the "immediate safe release of all hostages and abducted persons, wherever and by whomever they are being held." Needless to say, Tel Aviv ignored the resolution. After all, kidnapping non-combatants, including minors, and holding them hostage, was an integral part of Israel's military strategy. In May 1994, Israeli soldiers abducted a prominent Lebanese businessman and former commander of the Shia Amal militia, Mustafa al-Dirani, and brought him into Israel. The aim of that kidnapping was to try and get information about the location of Ron Arad, an air force navigator who had been shot down over Sidon in 1986 during Israel's ongoing aggression against Lebanon.

Mr. Fahaf, whose presence Israel refused to recognise for years, spent 11 years in jail before the Supreme Court finally ordered his release. He was allowed to return home along with 18 other Lebanese nationals who — the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported in August 2003 — had been held "according to the official version ... as `bargaining chips' for Ron Arad". Two of those released had been kidnapped as boys and had grown into adulthood in captivity.

Sheikh Obeid and Mr. Dirani were finally released in 2004, after being held hostage by the Israeli government for 15 and 10 years respectively. Both men spent extended periods of time at Camp 1391, dubbed Israel's Guantanamo, a prison whose existence the Israeli authorities do not freely admit to. There, Mr. Dirani was raped, sexually abused, and tortured by Israeli soldiers. A lawsuit filed by him against the State of Israel is currently pending before a judge in Tel Aviv. He is claiming NIS 6 million ($1.5 million) in damages.

The 2004 release was part of a general prisoner swap brokered by the German government in which Hizbollah released an Israeli businessman and reserve colonel seized in 2000 in order to force Tel Aviv to free Sheikh Obeid. Hizbollah also returned the bodies of three Israeli soldiers killed in action. In exchange, Israel set free the Sheikh, Mr. Dirani, and 33 other Lebanese and Arab hostages, as well as 400 Palestinian prisoners. It also returned the bodies of 59 Lebanese nationals killed by its security forces over the years.

It is necessary to recall this entire sordid episode in order to put in perspective Hizbollah's foolish action of seizing two Israeli soldiers across the blue line dividing Lebanon from Israel. Thanks to Israel, kidnapping and hostage-taking — as well as the targeting of non-combatants and even children — have become "acceptable" military tactics in the region though one would be hard pressed to come across any reference to Sheikh Obeid or Mr. Dirani in the international news coverage that followed Hizbollah's action. The Shia militia wants Tel Aviv to free the handful of Lebanese prisoners still in Israeli jails who were promised freedom in 2004 but never released. Most prominent among them is Samir Kuntar, captured in 1978 during a guerrilla raid on an Israeli settlement near the Lebanese border. Kuntar was found guilty of killing a civilian man and his young daughter and sentenced to more than 500 years in prison by an Israeli court. The Israeli authorities may baulk at releasing a "convicted child killer." But in rejecting the possibility of a negotiated settlement and indiscriminately bombarding Lebanon, Tel Aviv has turned its own soldiers into the executioners of children. When a well-marked United Nations post takes a direct hit and ambulances are struck — according to a recent dispatch by Robert Fisk — with missiles that pierce the Red Cross and Crescent symbol right at the centre, it is hard to accept the Israeli claim that all civilian deaths were unintended.

Real war aims

Recalling the recent history of kidnappings is also necessary for another reason: To puncture the myth that the disproportionate and utterly criminal Israeli military response that is pulverising Lebanon and its people today is somehow driven by an urge to free its two kidnapped soldiers.

Read what Zbigniew Brzezinski, the former U.S. National Security Advisor, told a small gathering in Washington last week about this. "I hate to say this but I will say it. I think what the Israelis are doing today for example in Lebanon is in effect — maybe not in intent — the killing of hostages. The killing of hostages ... Because when you kill 300 people, 400 people, who have nothing to do with the provocations Hizbollah staged, but you do it in effect deliberately by being indifferent to the scale of collateral damage, you're killing hostages in the hope of intimidating those that you want to intimidate. And more likely than not you will not intimidate them. You'll simply outrage them and make them into permanent enemies with the number of such enemies increasing."

On a par with the fantasy that the latest Israeli aggression against Lebanon is about protecting the legitimate security interests of Israel is the demand being raised in various quarters for a NATO peacekeeping force to be deployed on the Lebanese side of the border in order to disarm Hizbollah. Frequent reference is made to Security Council resolution 1559 of 2004, which called on the Lebanese government to assert its sovereignty over the whole of its territory and disarm the Shiite militia. When it suits Israel and the United States, United Nations resolutions such as 242 and 338 on Palestine or 638 on releasing hostages can be ignored for years on end. But other resolutions acquire a Biblical patina and instant compliance is required of them. By grossly interfering in Lebanon's internal affairs, Resolution 1559 was clearly ultra vires of the U.N. Charter. That is why it passed with the barest possible majority. Russia and China chose to abstain rather than exercise their veto because the resolution envisaged no enforcement mechanism. In any case, it is absurd for Israel — which is bombing Lebanon at will and sending in its troops — to speak in favour of a resolution that calls for the Lebanese government to assert its sovereignty.

As the Israeli peace bloc, Gush Shalom, has said, the current offensive against Lebanon — like the 1982 invasion which led to two decades of occupation — was prepared in advance in anticipation of a suitable provocation. Hizbollah's kidnap raid provided the Olmert regime the excuse it needed to launch a war for the physical elimination of the militia and the eventual installation of a pliant regime in Lebanon that would do Israel's — and the U.S.' — bidding. In many ways, the script is not that different from the manner in which the abduction of an Israeli soldier by Palestinian guerrillas gave Tel Aviv the pretext to do something it was itching to do ever since Hamas won the elections.

In both cases, Israel and its principal international backer, the U.S., have proved how bogus is their vision of a "New Middle East" centred around respect for democracy and human rights. By attacking Gaza and Lebanon, that too with such overwhelming and disproportionate military force, Israel has decisively turned its back on the possibility of a negotiated peace settlement with the Palestinians and Syrians. The Olmert regime has no intention of relinquishing its illegal control over land and aquifers that belong to others. The U.S. does not want democracy to flourish in the region. Nor does Israel. What it wants are partners who are too weak, isolated or pliant to insist on their rights. What it has in mind are unilateral outcomes, imposed through gunboat negotiations if possible or through war if necessary. In both cases, the active support of the Bush administration and the silence of the rest of the world are essential.

The refusal of the U.N. to condemn the Israeli aggression against Lebanon and the Palestinian Authority, its failure to bring about an immediate ceasefire despite the mounting civilian toll, and its inability to get Israel to lift its inhuman blockade of Gaza and release the Hamas Ministers and MPs it kidnapped last month are paving the way for a human tragedy of monumental proportions. As long as the world continues to appease Israel in this manner, the people of the region — and especially the Israelis — will never know peace.

Friday, December 17, 2004

Brahminism & Zionism

Dr. R.P. Harsh, Harsh Clinic, Barnala Road, Sirsa - 125 055

December 1st - 15th 2004

"Cultural nationalism" is a zionist concept. What relationship the Brahmins have with "cultural nationalism?" The motive is clear. DNA report has confirmed that the Vaidik Brahmins are also Jews. They are the children of Israel. Brahminism and zionism are the two faces of the same coin. At the World Conference Against Racism at Durban (South Africa) both Brahmins and Jews had joined hands when the matter to equate Brahminism (casteism) and zionism with racism came up (DV Sept.16, 2002 p.17: "Dalits defeat Hindu rulers: UN equates casteism with racism").

Race hatred: In the book, The Hindu Nationalist Movement & Indian Politics, Christophe Jaffrelot, (Penguin), the distinguished French scholar, profusely quotes from Hindu nazi philosopher Golwalkar who was the author of the "cultural nationalism", the essential criterion of which is race, which gets the pride of place. In other words, anybody opposed to "cultural nationalism" must be physically annihilated. "Cultural nationalism" means upper caste racism. Muslims and Christians have to pledge they will remain subservient to the Brahmin and Brahminism.

Israeli connection: The Hindu nazi RSS is the mother organisation of Vaidiks. It was founded by Chitpavan Brahmins. Tilak, Golwalkar, Deoras and Godse were all Chitpavans. The DNA report has finally settled the issue that Chitpavan Brahmins are the Jews. RSS is fully guided by the Jews of India. Viswa Hindu Parishad is nothing but an extension of the world zionist organisation. They call Rama as Ram Lala. Ramallah of Palestine is a distorted version of Ram Lala.

Anti-Muslim conspiracy: The incident of 1857 was not a "freedom movement". It was a Brahminical conspiracy to overthrow the Muslim and British rule and to replace it with their Brahminical imperialism. The conspiracy of 1857 was hatched by the Vaidiks at Poona. Nana Sahib, the adopted son of Peshwa Baji Rao-II, had fixed May 31, 1857 as the date of this plot. Because of unavoidable reasons it was executed earlier on May 10, 1857 by instigating the religious protests in the name of cow and pork fat-made cartridges. Nanasaheb later fled to Nepal. What happened later is history. The poor Mughal emperor, Bahadur Shah Zaffar, became the victim of a Brahminical conspiracy. He was arrested and put into the prison where he died as an ordinary criminal.

The final onslaught of this zionist conspiracy came in 1905 when Brahminical-zionist forces launched their political revolution in the name of "cultural nationalism". Tilak took the lead in India, Lenin in Russia and David Ben Gurion in Palestine.

Shahu Maharaj of Kolhapur dubbed the "cultural nationalism" of Tilak as Brahminical terrorism.
"Chosen people": Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) is part of international zionism. DNA report has finally confirmed that the Chitpavans are the Jews. Brahmins believe that they are super humans and they are gods on earth. Jews also think, they are superhuman — chosen people on earth.

Hinduism" is the mask to hide their Brahminism. They dub all those who opposes Brahmins as anti-national/terrorists. The zionists dub every critic of Israel as anti-Semetic. Genocide of Budhists, Christians, Sikh, Muslims and Dalits is a common feature of Brahminical forces. They do not recognise the identities of any other nation. To deceive the non-Brahmins in the name of "cultural nationalism" they use the term of Hindu nationalism. They are also the fathers of racism.

Both Brahminism and zionism are two sides of the same coin. VHP is getting huge funds from their international gang for their subversive activities in the name of Ram Temple, Hindu, Hindutva and cultural nationalism. Genocide of Muslims in Gujarat is the continuity of Brahminical terrorism which was started in 185 BC when Budhist emperor Brahadrath was killed by Brahmin commander Pushyamitra Sung. In every respect Brahminism and zionists are the same.

For details read Editor V.T. Rajshekar's book, Brahminism (DSA-2003), particularly its Chapter-4, "Jews & the Jews of India" and the annexure: "Brahminical origin of zionist thoughts" (p.139).

Friday, July 30, 2004

Brahmanizing the Diaspora

Ra Ravishakar and Shafali Chandra

Gadar, July 2004

Why has the United States provided the most nurturing space for the spread of Hindu fundamentalist activities? Geographically far from its Indian 'home', the policies and actions of the US Hindutva brigade take on a particularly warped personality, creating new networks, disseminating new ideological programmes, and simultaneously compounding the intolerance and bigotry of political and cultural Hindu fundamentalism in India.

Because of the particular history of the diasporic community in the United States, and the quality of mainstream media and political opinion, the networks and ideological forces by which Hindu fundamentalism has crept into and multiplied itself in the United States remains beyond the usual reprisal that can be levied against fascist sentiments. Connecting to the vastly influential Zionist lobby, spreading across college campuses, and conducting various fundraising activities in the name of development, Hindutva agencies have built on existing networks of right- wing sentiment, but also strengthened their presence in seemingly innocent spaces like youth culture and charitable organizations. Together these networks work to manufacture consent even as they continuously reach out and incorporate new constituencies in their production.

One of the most vicious of the symbiotic relationships that US Hindutva has forged in the past year has been with influential Zionists. For instance in this very issue, the articles USINPAC: Buying Zionist Influence, Selling Indian Interests and Zionism and Hindutva in the U.S. reveal how the global consensus building machinery on the 'war on terror' has contributed to cementing these ties. Just recently, this past May 2004, the Hindu American Foundation featured prominently in the Annual Policy Conference of the AIPAC [http://www.aipac.org/], alongside George W Bush and other luminaries. [1]. In their press statement, the HAF 'discussed the scourge of terror faced by the United States, India and Israel and conveyed the security issues facing Hindus globally to AIPAC leaders. HAF emphasized the many values shared by Hindu Americans and Jewish Americans: a determined work ethic, family values, a non proselytizing tolerant religion, and a respect for life and religious freedom.'

Establishing the historic roots for the common impetus behind global Islamophobia and a capitalist work ethic is a particularly innovative strategy. Other than such corporate activities, US Hindutva has worked its way into more 'liberal' spaces by deploying the rhetoric of 'fun' and youth outreach. At the University of Illinois for instance, the Hindu Students council organized a seemingly innocuous celebration of 'holi' this past April. Described as an enjoyable 'festival of colours', the home page of the UIUC Council then went on to explain that the larger purpose of the organsation is to raise awareness about Hindu religious and cultural activities for the youth on college campuses in a fun way. Hence the celebration of activities like Holi and Diwali.

But a slightly deeper investigation of the 'Hindu Students' Council' leaves a noxious trail. The US home page [2]presents (among other things) a detailed refutation of the 'Aryan Invasion theory', thereby arguing that 'Hinduism' - defined as the beliefs contained in the Vedas - was indigenous to the geographical territory now named India. Another section virulently lambasts the work of US academics Jeffrey Kirpal, Wendy Doniger and Paul Courtwright, thus establishing that free speech, even in the name of intellectual pursuits remains antithetical to the dogma of Hindu fundamentalism. The 'Hindu Women Project' emphasizes the power of Hindu women lies in their ability to embrace tradition, itself conceived of as a brahmanical, heternormative and unquestioning ethos.

Who are the donors to the HSC? The home page lists the activities of the Global Dharma Conference of 2003, where 'most of the main Hindu and Indian organizations like Arya Samaj of Greater Houston, Meenakshi Temple Society, VHP of America, India Cultural Centre etc pledged generous donations'[3]. This Global Dharma conference brought together the youth and college kids on campuses through the HSC and thus served as an interface between the seemingly fun and cultural activities of the council and the venomous face of a corporate American Hindutva.

Indeed the Hindutva brigade has successfully manipulated fundraising channels towards its own ends. As brilliantly demonstrated by the 'Campaign to Stop Funding Hate [CSFH]', website seemingly well meaning donations to aid development and welfare activities in India, made by wealthy Indians in American locations was cleverly siphoned off towards the political activities of the Sangh Parivar in India. This is certainly not limited to the United States, for similar activities have now been identified in the United Kingdom as well. The basic point is that without necessarily being aware of the eventual end point for their funds, unsuspecting people of Indian origin have regularly donated small and large sums of money to 'charitable' and development oriented activities.

When this conduit was discovered and disputed by CSFH in November 2002, the Sangh Parivar denied it had any connection to the IDRF [India Development Relief Fund] which was the conduit through which these donations were channeled towards Indian Sangh activities. This February however, the RSS finally conceded that the IDRF was a 'Hindu Organisation' closely related to the Sangh Parivar. As reiterated in CSFH's latest press release [4], the IDRF has spent considerable amounts of its finances in proselytizing especially amongst tribals and adivasis and in supporting other violent activities in India.

If US Hindu fundamentalist groups rely on existing networks amongst Zionist, youth college, and NRI communities, then the ideologies supported by these activities bear equally close scrutiny. The basic assumptions embedded in the rhetoric of the Hindu right actually finds close resemblance to some liberal and even left of center sentiments. This makes it difficult, but for that very reason especially urgent, to separate out and forge a sustained campaign of vigilance. The examples listed above demonstrate that the various wings of the Hindu right have been promoting a narrow, brahminical version of Hinduism, one that erases any mention - and often condones - the revolting history of Hindu casteism. These views reinforce the view that this form of Hinduism is the only authentic cultural and religious force in the subcontinent. For example the Hindu American Foundation http://hinduamericanfoundation.com/campaigns_denverpost_letter.htm, itself headed by a renowned Sanghi, Mihir Meghani regularly disputes questions on the rights of other minorities in India and seamlessly refers to a bounded, static, regressive 'Hinduism' in making its arguments. Compounding this unitary and static version of brahmanical Hinduism is the intolerance of other religions, and the furtherance of the belief that Islam and Christianity are both antithetical to the tolerant, secular fabric of India (by which Hindutva ideologues mean the entire subcontinent) as well as continuing remnants of brutal foreign invasions. This is how the perceived threat of a heightened globalisation can be deployed to condone violence against minorities within India.

If the intolerance bred of a chauvinistic and unitary notion of Hinduism can be exacerbated in diasporic communities, so too can be the sense of a 'diasporic guilt'. The conviction that non resident Indians are somehow 'cut off' from their roots, and need to teach their children the 'fundamentals' of Hindu civilisation supports this rigid view of Hinduism and makes the cultural activities of organizations like the HSC seem necessary. The sense of a beleaguered, isolated middle class is often stoked by abstractly referring to the threat posed by other South Asian communities, rather than against dominant forms of imperialism.

So the networks - both physical as well as ideological that support the march of Hindutva in the United States -- must be seriously documented. Because of the absence of a live critical press, they are not being interrogated on a day to day basis, and critiques such as this one will not find themselves into the normative homes of suburban Chicago and San Francisco. Secondly, like all effective ideologies, Hindutva has formed links with and amidst other indigenous networks - Zionism, corporate culture, college campuses. The networks are both varied as well as deeply entrenched, existing in some of the most powerful and easily reproducible sites of US society and culture. These ideologies and networks are difficult to identify, often appearing to do one thing (development work, or introducing kids to Hindu culture in a fun way) while actually fomenting religious fundamentalism. Finally, the decentralized nature of the Hindutva leadership in the United States (as opposed to in India, where ultimate connections to political parties can be easily unearthed) also makes it difficult to identify the purpose of these activities.

This is how the United States provides a fertile space for the dissemination of fundamentalist ideas and processes. The local and mainstream media in the US disinterested in and unable to dispel these myths, and the insular nature of the South Asian community in the US also encourages these ideas to remain largely uninterrogated. For many reasons then, and in so many myriad ways, immigrant spaces provide generous support for the widening reach of volatile hatred.

And it is precisely for that reason that the insidious forces of Hindutva have seeped into the nooks and crevices of everyday life in the United States. The roots are strong, and have made up for a historical absence of support by spreading through the widest and most powerful channels of culture and communication. The Campaign to Stop Consenting to Hate has to start with the ability to demystify the structural, ideological and covert operations of Hindutva. We must be completely vigilant and in the process, reach an understanding of how to enter into those very spaces and change both minds as well as structures.


References

  1. http://www.hinduamericanfoundation.org/media_press_release_jewish-groups.htm
  2. http://www.hscnet.org/index.php
  3. http://www.hscnet.org/articles.php?filename-pr-houstonfundraiser-2003
  4. http://stopfundinghate.org/resources/news/030104SFHPressRelease.htm

Friday, July 09, 2004

USINPAC : Buying Zionist Influence, Selling Indian Interests

By Zeeshan Farees

Gadar, 7 July 2004

The United States India Political Action Committee (USINPAC [www.usinpac.com]) was formally formed as an Indian American lobby group in September 2002. Since then it has managed to attract a surprising amount of attention. In a short span of time it has made its presence felt on Capitol Hill. It has acquired political access by buying power breakfasts with Senators like Richard Lugar and Orrin Hatch. It also throws 'power luncheons' for Senate and House Committee staffers. But it wasn't just the money that bought it the US politician's attention. USINPAC has been hoisted to its success by two very influential Jewish lobbies, the American-Jewish Committee (AJC) and the American-Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC).

USINPAC has closely modeled AJC and the American Israel Political Action Committee's political schema and has been working in concert with them in pushing various issues. While the two powerful Zionist organizations have been helping USINPAC navigate the US political scene, it has responded to this nurturing by wholly supporting their agendas, even when those agendas are contrary to Indian political ideology or detrimental to the Indian American Diaspora.

AJC and AIPAC had organized the first-ever joint Capitol Hill forum on July 16 2003 along with the US Indian Political Action Committee. The event featured nearly a dozen Congress members from across the US, diplomats from the Indian and Israeli embassies, and political activists from both communities speaking about the mutually beneficial nature of Israeli-Indian relations. The congress members included Republican Tom Lantos (D-CA) and Republican Gary Ackerman (D-NY). Congressman Tom Lantos summarized the binding issue of the evening and of the alliance, when he said, "We are drawn together by mindless, vicious, fanatic, Islamic terrorism." Congressman Ackerman then underlined the concerns bringing together the Zionist and Indian lobbies. He said that Israel was "surrounded by 120 million Muslims" while " India has 120 millions Muslims [within]". The conference continued in this tenor with numerous speakers using the words "Muslim" and "terrorist" interchangeably.

Mr. Sanjay Puri, Executive Director of USINPAC, had defined its mission as strengthening US-India bilateral relations in defence, trade, and business. But, as the joint forum with the Jewish lobbies indicated, USINPAC has made Israel the gateway to the US administration. The common ground between Israel and India is being built by defining Muslims as the shared problem.

Human Events, a conservative opinion magazine, had recently highlighted USINPAC under its 'Conservative Watch'. It hailed the Indian American lobbying group as part of 'another new world order' comprising of Neo-Con America and Israel, standing in opposition to the ' New World Order of the United Nations, European Union, and other such organizations'. The American Right-Wing media has good reason to believe that USINPAC is with them in opposition to the rest of the world. Sue Ghosh Stricklett, an attorney and member of USINPAC's Defense and Strategic Affairs Committee, stated, "The terrorism directed against India is the same as that directed against the United States and Israel." USINPAC has helped strengthen the Zionist efforts to equate the Palestinian struggle with 9/11 by adding various Indian conflicts to the mélange. This despite the fact that India has traditionally favored the Palestinian right to sovereignty and the Israeli occupation is becoming increasingly unpopular in most parts of the world. The pro-Zionist stance adopted by USINPAC is a reflection of its sympathy with the Indian communalists who have been brandishing Zionism as an inspiration for an Indian identity based on a mythical (Vedic) history and singular in character.

This political action committee which claims to be 'pro-India' has adopted the Neo-Conservative definition of 'terrorism' as its cause celebre, and has declared the latter to be its primary legislative concern this year. Sunjay Puri finds no distinction between terrorism in India, Israel and/or the United States of America. "I would argue that the people who bombed the World Trade Center are terrorists and the people who attacked the parliament in Delhi are terrorists and the people who make those attacks in Jerusalem and other parts of Israel are terrorists," he stated. The US India Political Action Committee's sympathy for and solidarity with the Neo-Con agenda is quite apparent in its support of AJC's backing of the USA Patriot Act. This political stand has cost AJC some of its allies among civil rights groups who have been condemning the Patriot Act as an assault on civil liberties. USINPAC, on the other hand, has consistently failed to condemn the Patriot Act despite the fact that immigrants, including those in the Indian immigrant community, have proven extremely vulnerable to its excesses. USINPAC's support at such a time has prompted AJC to call it one of the most important relationships for American Jewish lobbying groups.

Thus, USINPAC has been displaying unequivocal support to its political mentors. One of the latest in that series is its controversial support for the HR3077 bill, titled The International Higher Education Act of 2003 [http://www.theorator.com/bills108/hr3077.html]. The bill proposes amendments to Title VI funding for international studies programs at U.S. universities. It is a measure to convince the House of Representatives to create a monitoring committee for controlling the work of university professors focussing on world affairs. The bill is being promoted by groups whose main goal is to efffectively police academic work and impose an ideological agenda on university teaching, research and writing about issues affecting the US policy on foreign affairs. Section 6 of HR 3077 establishes an International Higher Education Advisory Board, which "shall provide advice, counsel and recommendations to the Secretary and the Congress on international education issues for higher education." The apparent intent of this 'advisory board' is to provide a limitation of programs that teach the accepted ruling party doctrine. The seven members of such an 'advisory board' will have investigative and monitoring powers. The 'advisory board' envisioned by the Bill would be independent from the Department of Education, which has thus far been responsible for overseeing the federal funding of educational programs. This creates a potential for skewing academic study in particular ideological directions and making it very difficult for independent and critical voices to be heard. These powers are meant to intimidate US academics and administrators. Some institutions are already talking of turning down Federal money, preferring to cut back on their programs instead of putting up with such potentially intimidatory tactics. The Subcommittee on Select Education, which presented the bill to the Congress, used the testimony of people like Stanley Kurtz [http://edworkforce.house.gov/hearings/108th/sed/titlevi61903/kurtz.htm] to convince the Representatives of the need for such a monitoring body. In addition to Kurtz, this legislation is being pushed by a number of other neo- conservative personalities, including Martin Kramer and Daniel Pipes [www.danielpipes.org]. While the direct target of these testimonies are the Middle East centers of international studies, centres of South Asia Studies will also be equally vulnerable. [1] The Federal funding provided by Title VI has helped the benefiting centers in playing a central role in developing public understanding of economic, defense and foreign policy issues. These studies programs help in preparing diplomats and other experts in foreign affairs and in providing critical analysis for US national decision-making. University programs that provide training in the less commonly taught languages and world areas, including those of strategic interest, would not exist without Title VI funding. These programs train 78% of the graduate students in the least commonly taught languages, such as those for which national security agencies have identified shortfalls (Hindi and Urdu are two such languages). The already under-funded South Asia Studies programs will suffer immensely if federal funding for them is controlled by a select group's narrow world view; the increased political control will adversely affect teaching and research by scholars of South Asia at US universities. USINPAC's support of such a measure which is of no benefit to India-US relations; in fact, by undermining the objective and critical study of South Asia (and particularly India) it is actually a potential threat to the interests of the Indian Diaspora.

The US Indian Political Action Committee 's website carries the slogan, "Let Indian American voices be heard". So far it has pumped the Zionist shill, accepted the Neo-Conservative propaganda as its speaking point, made India a big market for US-Israeli weapons and trampled over the concerns of the secular Indians. If anything, the voice that it has consistently ignored in this orchestra of power is the Indian voice - the voice of the millions of Indians and Indian Americans who do not subscribe to the narrow, chauvinistic politics of USINPAC and its Zionist and Neo-Conservative allies.

Editorial note: South Asia Studies in the American academy has recently, and not coincidentally, been the target of severe criticism by other 'soft-Hindutva' forces/individuals of the American Diaspora such as Rajiv Malhotra of the Infinity Foundation [http://infinityfoundation.com/index.shtml] for being too critical of Hinduism and India. The forces of hard and soft Hindutva have in fact been marshalling their forces against 'Left' (which they read as communist, anti-Hindu and anti-Indian) academics and intellectuals and coordinating their efforts in India and abroad. The organised reaction to the appointment of Romilla Thapar as the first holder of the prestigious Kluge Chair at the Library of Congress earlier this year was one example of this attack; the razing of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute in Pune by Shiv Sena goons in retaliation for a book on Shivaji which was based on sources preserved at the Institute, and the reaction to Paul Courtwright's recently-published book on Ganesh yet another].

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Zionism and Hindutva in the US

n 1994, Shekhar Tiwari, congressional relations point-man for FISI (Friends of India Society International), gushed: "The Jewish lobby has a great understanding of the political process in the U.S. " [1]Sure enough, in 2001, the AIPAC (America-Israel Political Action Committee) and the AJC (American Jewish Committee), two titans of the 'Jewish lobby' that had Tiwari in thrall almost a decade ago, played midwife to the infant USINPAC (United States India Political Action Committee) in the immediate aftermath of the September 2001 events [2]. While USINPAC differs from FISI in terms of specific institutional ties with Hindutva, both share a common passion for Israel's perceived military, and political power, and a desire to utilize the Israeli lobby's experience and power, real and perceived, to further the ends of India's ruling classes in alliance with the neoliberal Indian American big bourgeoisie. These ends include gaining the favors of U.S. imperial power, while welcoming predatory capitalism, and its institutional tentacles in India.

While FISI may be more Hindutva than neoliberal, USINPAC is more neoliberal than Hindutva. Both FISI and USINPAC share a vision of a militaristic India, antagonistic to Pakistan, and to different degrees, i.e. between outright hatred and blatant indifference, share contempt towards the rights of Indian Muslims. USINPAC made no statement about the Gujarat genocide in 2002. Both are tied to a vision of India as a partner in the neoliberal imperialist project, alongside Israel and the U.S.


As far as commitment to neoliberalism goes, Arun Shourie has enacted with a passion bordering on the obscene, what Sanjay Puri [Executive Director of USINPAC] articulates as his fervent desire - the destruction of the public sector in favor of privatization for the benefit of multinational capital [3]. Hindutva and Indian nationalisms of the sort imagined to exist among folks in USINPAC, are tied therefore to capitalism's neoliberal avatar, and reflect the interests and dreams of the propertied, trans-national, wealthy economic and social elites of India and among elite Indian Americans. In sum the distinctions between Hindutvadi pro-Zionism and the pro-Zionism of its so-called "Indian nationalist" counterparts are trivial, and misleading. While they both perceive the "Jewish lobby" as the gateway to the U.S. political establishment, it is also equally likely that they may both be tied to imperialism's agenda through a Zionist leash given the real imbalance in power.

United In Terror?

Three years ago, it was noted that several Hindutva groups in the U.S. had begun to cooperate closely with extremist pro-Israel Zionist organizations. At that time, the most significant instance of this cooperation was the warm ties developing between New York based Rohit Vyasmaan's HinduUnity.org, a front for Bajrang Dal in the U.S., and Kahane.org. [4]Apparently, when Vyasmaan's HinduUnity.org website was taken down after complaints to the service provider, he contacted the Kahane group's director Michael Guzofsky who was then in Israel. Guzofsky introduced Vyasmaan to his friend Gary Wardell [5], a businessman in Annandale Virginia, who now hosts both websites [6]. Wardell works closely with a Christian Zionist organization affiliated to David Wilkerson's Times Square Church. Wilkerson in a recent interview on a Christian Zionist website wordofmessiah.org:

"The Bible tells us very clearly in Zechariah 12 that God will destroy those who come against Jerusalem," Wilkerson said. "If George W. Bush pressures Israel to give even one inch of Jerusalem to the Arabs, God will punish him for it." [7]

Further research on these ties reveal some interesting details. The server with I.P. address 67.153.104.163, [8] which hosts HinduUnity.org, HinduUnity.com, and HinduUnity.net, also hosts BajrangDal.org, BajrangDal.com, and BajrangDal.net!

Among the extremist Zionist websites hosted on this IP address are Kahane.org, www.jdl-ny.org, New York chapter of the Kahane'ist 'Jewish Defense League.' Meir Kahane, who was killed in 1990, is described even by the Zionist Anti Defamation League as an extremist who "consistently preached a radical form of Jewish nationalism which reflected racism, violence and political extremism" [9]In December 2001, the chairman and a top official of the JDL were charged with " plotting to blow up a Los Angeles area mosque and an office of United States Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.)." [10]The domain name that the above IP address refers to ends with .il which is the domain suffix for Israel; however this does not mean the physical machine is in Israel; it is thought to be in the U.S [11].

Other websites hosted on the same IP address include www.Joinidf.org (recruiting for the Israeli Defense forces), www.Jewishlegion.net, which redirects to defendisrael.net, a site that shows an image of a subdued Arab man being bitten by a police dog, and prides itself in utilizing trained police dogs to "join in the struggle to defend Jews in Israel against Terror attacks." [12] The website 'nahalharedi.org' boasts on its frontpage: "Orthodox Jews around the world can now join the IDF for different spans of time and help defend Israel. Various programs are availbale.(sic)" There are several other websites on this IP address that reflect the extremist Zionism of Kahane's group, and a majority of the websites hosted have to do with Israel, Zionism, Kabbalah and the IDF. However, the glaring exception is the presence of HinduUnity and BajrangDal's websites. Zionist Hindutva collaboration is brought to fruition with the blessings of a Christian Zionist web service provider!

Why does the Bajrang Dal's website exist on this server? With all the expertise available to the Hindu right, especially within the Desi community in the U.S., what draws them to the arms of their Kahane friends in such a tight embrace? Bajrang Dal activists in India were reported to have made known their admiration for Israel and the Mossad in 2000. 13 Yet, it does come as a surprise that there is such closeness between two organizations considered even by their 'moderate' cousins in the Hindutva and Zionist movements, to be way off the edge. 14 The ties with the Christian Right add another ominous dimension to this relationship.

A stone and a mountain.

In August 2000, the Maccabean, mouthpiece of the extremist Freeman Center, a collection of Likud-oriented Zionists, whose 'frequent contributors' include Ariel Sharon, Daniel Pipes, and other notable Zionist hacks with ties to think tanks and U.S. and Israeli government agencies, claimed:

"The Freeman Center was instrumental in the initiation of military relations between India and Israel. This was done pre-Oslo via Shimon Peres, Minister of Foreign Affairs in the government of the alcoholic Jew murderer (The Altalena) Prime Misiter Yitzhak Rabin 1992. Sales of Israeli military projects to India as risen rapidly to over #2 billion per annum." [15]

Freeman Center's maintains two links to India-related websites: one a website of the Kashmiri Pandit group 'Kashmir Overseas Association' (http://www.kashmir-information.com) and the second, the 'Sword of Truth' website (http://www.swordoftruth.com/), described as "the pro-Hindu site of Freeman Center Research Associate Arvind Ghosh." [16] The latter website has a reputation for being one of the most rabid Hindutva outlets on the web. [17] Mr. Ghosh has been in the forefront of promoting Hindutva for quite some time; his diatribe called "Islam and the Infidel" was reviewed by Sita Ram Goel, and his writings have appeared on Organiser, the RSS mouthpiece. [18] In 1999, a message claiming that 50,000 Muslims wanted to "convert" to Hinduism appeared on the newsgroup soc.culture.Indian, posted by a prominent poster, one Jai Maharaj. [19] Monetary contributions supposedly for the purposes of enabling this "conversion," were to be directed to Arvind Ghosh, "(address: P.O. Box 631048, Houston TX 77263 USA) who is the Honorary Forwarding agent for the amount.""

Mr. Ghosh's views on "Jew-Hindu relations" are summed up in an article with the same title:

"However, it must be said that intellectually, education-wise and in many other ways, the Jews today stand at a very high level of competence and effectiveness. But their numbers are small. The Hindus, on the other hand, still have the superiority of numbers but nothing more. Under such circumstances, the only way the Jews and the Hindus can come to a meaningful cooperation is to lend Jewish technical know-how to the Hindus while the Hindus should provide the right kind of man power to the Jews along with raw materials." [20]

The bulk of the above-mentioned article is an outright denunciation and denigration of all Muslims who have existed since the 7 th century, so its basic thrust is not only to establish a 'positive' basis for "Jew-Hindu relations" but also reinforce the negative basis, which is founded on an intense hatred of Muslims, and the subcontinent's Islamic heritage. Interestingly, Ghosh's delirious rants are echoed in a statement found on the discussion board israelforum.com's Israeli-World relations section titled ' India and Israel increase trade:'

India must be more aggressive in her rightful and just war against the Islamists and Arabs. India has the power and the resources to squash the Islamists in one gersture of your fingers.

In whole Israel there are less people then in one city of India. If israel is a rock, then India is a mountain. Time the mountain start falling on our mutual enemies heads. I am sure, Israel will bring what ever special powers it has, includeing highly trained "volentears". [21]

The same forum includes an announcement:

Israeli Ambassador will be hosting members of USINPAC and the Indian Ambassador, and their Trade and Commerce Colleagues to discuss trade, commerce and other strategic opportunities between US, Israel and India at a luncheon on March 25, 2004 at 12:00 P.M. [22]

Democrazies against Terror?

Two recently organized efforts that use a slightly different approach to establishing Zionist-Hindutva collaboration focus on the supposed opposition between 'democracy' and 'terror,' with the bland suggestion that Israel and India alongside the U.S. represent 'democracy,' while Palestinians, Pakistanis, Arabs, Muslims, the world over, represent 'terror.' Let us not waste time trashing this product of self-induced delirium, since we know it emerges from the trash-heap of deception, lies, and outright racism. Those envisioning such an alliance on behalf of democracy, would have to render themselves blind, deaf and dumb in the face of the mega-terrorism waged by Israel against the Palestinians, the U.S. the world over; and with the Hindutva hijacked state, India's credentials as a state sponsoring terrorism against its own population reached dizzying heights in Gujarat March 2002, not to speak of the Indian state's legacy of brutality in Kashmir, Assam and Punjab. Yet, the website democraciesagainstterror.org proclaims:

" In particular, we emphasize the common problems facing Israel, India, and the United States. We promote all forms of cooperation between these countries that represent inclusion, equality, and the highest ideals of humanity. " [23]

Who are these self-proclaimed knights of democracy? Based in Fremont, California, this group includes such 'democratic' minded individuals as Gaurang Desai, president of the Bay Area chapter of FISI, Mihir Meghani, a member of the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, the RSS's overseas avatar, President of the recently formed Hindu American Foundation, and a founding member of the Hindu Students Coucil, an organization created by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America, Yatindra Bhatnagar, a well known defender of Hindutva who recently lashed out at a recent Indian Muslim Council event in which the growing intolerance and violence of organized Hindutva was being addressed [24], Scott Abramson, a hard-core Zionist physician from San Mateo, CA, who sets out boxes of cookies to attract passers to a table promoting AIPAC and Israel [25], and who also was a signatory to the pathetic letindiadevelop rag cobbled together in the wake of the Campaign to Stop Funding Hate 's devastating exposure of the IDRF's nefarious diversion of funds towards Hindutva activities in India [26], and other similarly endowed exemplary practitioners of 'democracy.'

4Democracy.org is another venture linking California based Hindutvadis and their Zionist counterparts, under the leadership of Bob Zeidman, an 'entrepreuner' who has made it a point to develop relations between Zionist activists and their Hindutvadi counterparts. Yatindra Bhatnagar, mentioned above, is an advisor to this group, and his articles are featured on their website; Zeidman's own piece titled ' India and Israel ' claims:

Both gained independence from England around the same time. Both are surrounded by enemies that wish to destroy it. Both must deal with terrorist attacks on a regular basis. Both are democracies that recognize individual human rights. Both have successfully turned to high technology as a means of reinvigorating their economies. Both cultures value education and hard work. [27]

Compare this to the statements made at a gathering held on October 20, 2002 in New Jersey, called "Hindu Jewish Friendship Celebration." Ved Nanda, a prominent figure at Hindutva events including the so-called "Dharma Conference" held annually, represented the "Hindu community" at this event. His summary of 'Hindu-Jewish friendship' asserted that " both have suffered extraordinarily long periods of persecution but have still kept our strong identities intact," "both are tolerant religions with no proselytization and no aggressive designs," "both have roots in vibrant democracies -- India and Israel -- with an irreverent press and passionate participation by civil society," "both are combating heinous acts of terrorism," and so on.

4democracy.org's Bob Zeidman is actively involved in promoting Israel-India relations with speaking engagements and media interventions in California. He spoke at a Jewish Business Persons Lunch Group in Walnut Creek, California on 23 rd February, 2004. His talk titled " Israel and India : From Ancient Culture to Modern Democracy," focused on " the fact that both countries are surrounded by dictatorships and subjected to frequent attacks by Islamist terrorists." Zeidman also "emphasized the need to support both countries as free democratic nations and strong allies of the United States. " In March, Zeidman's Speaking for Democracy(4democracy.org) was also " asked to talk to Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, a Hindu group in Orange County." In his note to supporters, Zeidman asks: "Is there a member of our group that lives in the area or is willing to go there to give a talk on a Sunday morning? Please let me know. You don't need to be an expert on Israeli history, Indian history, or U.S. history. We can send you information and work with you before the talk. Please let me know." [28]

Incidentally the democraciesagainstterrorism.org rag has a resources section in which under the 'Information on Israel ' header, there are not less than 30 websites listed. The 'Information on India ' section has a measly two: a link to the Indian Embassy, and one to USINPAC. Mihir Meghani, of Hindu Students Council and Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh fame, meanwhile has set up a new venture, called the Hindu American Foundation (hinduamericanfoundation.org). This outfit claims to have " created a report of Internet websites dedicated to propagating hatred and violence against Hindus and Hinduism." This list was supposedly shared with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which included a selection "of these anti-Hindu websites in a compilation entitled, "Digital Terrorism and Hate 2004." [29] Obviously, the intent is, to use the skill and experience of Zionist organizations like the SWC, whose website now sports an image and a headline that perhaps exemplifies the Orwellian nightmare that the early 21 st century has been relegated to:

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger Helps Launch New $200 Million Complex To Rise In Heart Of Jerusalem

Accompanied by an image of the racist 'Terminator' waving to a crowd in front of a giant banner that reads: "Center for Human Dignity, Museum of Tolerance, Jerusalem. [30]" The irony of this hideous negation of reality cannot be overemphasized: The Palestinian people are being targeted by Sharon, Bush and the Zionist neo-cons of Israel and the U.S., for 'unilateral separation,' a plan of ethnic cleansing, and genocide in slow-motion, which the self-ordained saints of tolerance at the SWC neither recognize, nor care about, as they raise slogans about human dignity in the midst of a settler colonial war of occupation and plunder. There is little doubt that Hindutva activist fronts like the "Hindu American Foundation" will use these ties to try and silence critics of Hindutva's excesses in the name of defending Hinduism. Criticism of Hindu practices such as caste are already being attacked by the Hindu American Foundation as " prejudice against Indians, Hindus and Hinduism." [31]


References

  1. Hindu Extremists Seek Ties With Israel and Its U.S. Lobby, Faisal Kutty, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, January 1994
  2. Namaste Sharon, Vijay Prashad, LeftWord, 2003
  3. 'Indo-US economic cooperation very positive; military cooperation very high' January 13, 2004 (http://www.indiaonestop.com/face2face/sanjaypuri.htm).
  4. "Two Unlikely Allies Come Together in Hatred of Muslims" New York Times, June 2, 2001
  5. Wardell is a member of a Christian Zionist movement The Times Square Church, of David Wilkerson, a : http://www.gesher.co.il/eng/index.php?pg=gd-5.inc Also: "Please notify Gary Wardell immediately, if you feel a guestbook entry does not glorify God and needs to be deleted. He's online almost all day and can usually quickly jump in to do editing." http://www.tscpulpitseries.org/teamlead.html Guidelines for Foreign Teams - Times Square Church Pulpit Series.
  6. United in Hatred, Aseem Chhabra, Rediff US Special, July 24, 2001 http://www.rediff.com/us/2001/jul/24usspec.htm
  7. American Pastor David Wilkerson speaks out in interview with Israel Today magazine, Word of Messiah Ministries http://wordofmessiah.org/david_wilkerson.htm
  8. An IP Address refers to a unique number of the form x.x.x.x which identifies a computer on the internet. Two machines cannot have the same IP address, and web servers have IP addresses that do not change dynamically, as computers that dial-up to access the web do.
  9. http://www.adl.org/extremism/jdl_chron.asp
  10. http://www.aaiusa.org/jdl.htm quoting Los Angeles Times, 12/13/01
  11. Whois query on networksolutions.com
  12. http://www.defendisrael.net/about.shtml
  13. Desi Mossad is getting ready at Bajrang Dal's Ayodhya camp, The Indian Express, June 30, 2000
  14. A very interesting piece of writing titled 'Bajarangis - Do not become Hindu Jihadis' appears on the Hindutva website http://hindutva.org/bajrang.html. The Hindutvadi authors of this message ask their Bajrang Dal friends: "Bajarangis - Decide now if you want to become like the beasts that you want to fight or to become hunters against those beasts." Similarly, denunciations of the JDL and Kahane movement can be found on the website of the Zionist ADL (noted above). The hindutva.org website promotes a 'Savarkar' brand of Hindutva which asserts atheistic, militaristic Hindu chauvinism, as opposed to the VHP-Bajrang Dal version which pursues the same with Brahmanic symbolism and ritualism.
  15. http://freeman.io.com/m_online/aug00/arens.htm
  16. In its brief bio of Arvind Ghosh (http://www.freeman.org/ghosh.htm), the Freeman Center notes: "It is his expertize (sic) on Moslem behavior and attrocities (sic) in the Indian sub-continent that makes him a valuable contributor to the Freeman Center."
  17. swordoftruth.org is registered to Arvind Ghosh, Sword Of Truth, HOUSTON, TX 77263-1048, US, (713)778-0960 source: Whois query from networksolutions.com
  18. Hindu Vivek Kendra, Book Review - http://groups.google.com/groups?q=arvind+ghosh&hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&selm=5hnfj5%24kt8%40usenet.srv.cis.pitt.edu&rnum=3
  19. http://groups.google.com/groups?q=arvind+ghosh&hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&selm=Hindu-0146.990322%40news.mantra.com&rnum=6
  20. Jew-Hindu Relations, Arvind Ghosh, The Maccabean, http://www.freeman.org/m_online/sep97/ghosh.htm
  21. http://www.israelforum.com/board/showthread.php3?pagenumber=8&threadid=3400 message posted by Gilgamesh 'senior member.' 4-21-2004
  22. http://www.israelforum.com/board/showthread.php3?pagenumber=8&threadid=3400
  23. http://democraciesagainstterror.org/
  24. Hours of Anti-India, Anti-Hindutva Rhetoric at "Indian" Muslim Meet, Yatindra Bhatnagar, July 8, 2003, http://democraciesagainstterror.org/articles/Bhatnagar2003-07-08.htm
  25. http://www.jewishsf.com/content/2-0-/module/displaystory/story_id/18502/edition_id/371/format/html/displaystory.html
    See also: http://www.pakistan-facts.com/article.php/20040210121949427 where Abramson claims that Musharraf is 'not to be trusted' because "his army supports terrorists there against Hindus. No wonder India remains skeptical of his overtures. America, like its fellow democracy, India, is now learning the unfortunate lessons of the Pakistani double-cross."
  26. http://www.letindiadevelop.org/ViewSignatures.asp?idstart=3779
  27. India and Israel, Bob Zeidman, Auguist 2003, http://4democracy.org/articles/Zeidman2003-08.htm
  28. 4democracy.org, March 1, 2004
  29. http://www.hinduamericanfoundation.com/achievements.htm
  30. http://www.wiesenthal.com/
  31. http://www.hinduamericanfoundation.org/campaigns_denverpost_letter.htm

Monday, September 08, 2003

Indian government courts alliance with Israel and US

Sharon given red carpet welcome in New Delhi

By Kranti Kumara and Keith Jones

World Socialist Web Site

25 September 2003

India’s coalition government, which is dominated by the Hindu supremacist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), rolled out the red carpet for Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon during a three-day official visit to India earlier this month, thus further solidarizing itself with Sharon’s ever-widening repression of the Palestinian people.

In pursuit of closer ties with both the Zionist state and the Bush administration, India’s BJP government has repeatedly drawn a parallel between the US, Israel and India, claiming that the three are “frontline” states in the battle against “Islamic” and state-sponsored “terror.” Sharon’s visit concluded with the issuing of a joint Indo-Israeli statement that claimed the two countries share common goals of “advancing peace, security and stability” in Asia and defeating the “global [terrorist] threat.” “[A]s victims of terrorism,” declared the statement, “Israel and India are partners in the battle against this scourge ... call upon the international community to take decisive action against this global menace, and condemn states and individuals who aid and abet terrorism...”

The ink was hardly dry on this statement than Sharon’s government was signalling that the next stage in its “anti-terrorism” campaign could include the assassination of PLO Chairman and Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat.

In addition to his Indian counterpart, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Sharon met with Indian Home Minister L.K. Advani, Finance Minister Jaswant Singh, External Affairs Minister Yeshwant Sinha, Defence Minister George Fernandes and India’s National Security Advisor Brajesh Mishra. Sharon also conferred with key figures in India’s business elite at a meeting organized by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the Confederation of Indian Industry. Sonia Gandhi, the widow of former Prime Minster Rajiv Gandhi, daughter-in-law of Indira Gandhi and current leader of the Congress party, requested and was granted a half-hour audience with the Israeli prime minister.

Thousands of people across India took to the streets to protest Sharon’s visit—the first ever by a sitting Israeli prime minister. Many held placards such as “Butcher Sharon, Go Back, Go Back,” a reference to Sharon’s role in the 1982 massacre of several thousand Palestinians at Lebanon’s Sabra and Shatila refugee camps and his government’s ongoing campaign of violence and intimidation against Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. The protests extended from Kashmir in the north to Madras (Chennai) in the south. Bombay police arrested a hundred people during a peaceful protest. Most of the non-Congress opposition parties issued a joint statement denouncing the visit and urging support for the protests.

The size of Sharon’s entourage is indicative of the breadth of the political, military and economic ties that India and Israel have forged over the past decade. Sharon was accompanied by Deputy Prime Minster Yosef Lapid and some 150 other aides, government officials and business leaders, including the chief executives of Israeli government- and privately owned arms and military technology manufacturers. Last year alone, India spent between $500 million and $2 billion on Israeli military technology and equipment. If the latter figure, which the New York Times cites, is true, Israel may well have surpassed Russia as India’s biggest foreign source of military equipment.

For decades a pillar of the non-aligned movement and a Cold War ally of the Soviet Union, India has long professed its staunch support for the Palestinian people. But since establishing full diplomatic ties with Israel in 1992, India has become ever more closely allied with the Zionist state. In 1999, when fighting in the Kargil region of Kashmir almost led to all-out war between India and Pakistan, Israel supplied India with unmanned aerial surveillance vehicles (UAVs) and sent military specialists to Kashmir to instruct Indian troops in counterinsurgency tactics. In the name of fighting international terrorism, India and Israel have developed even more extensive military and intelligence cooperation over the past two years.

India has also become a major market for Israeli goods. In 2002, non-military trade reached $1.2 billion, a more than six-fold increase from 1992. But it is arms sales that have cemented the growing commercial and political ties. According to the Israeli daily Haaretz, weapons sales to India and Turkey in the 1990s were instrumental in rescuing Israel’s military manufacturers from the crisis that they faced after the collapse of South Africa’s apartheid regime.

In August, the US government gave Israel the go-ahead to sell three Phalcon airborne early-warning radar, command and control systems to India for an estimated $1 billion. India’s plans to purchase antiballistic Arrow missiles from Israel were a major topic in Sharon’s discussions with ministers of the BJP-dominated National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government. Like the Phalcon purchase, the proposed $2.5 billion Arrow missile sale would require Washington’s blessing, as it would involve the transfer of US technology.

The NDA government’s pursuit of an alliance with Israel is rooted in the drive by the Indian ruling class to win India the status of South Asia’s pre-eminent power and an emerging world power by currying US favor and channelling an ever greater share of India’s scant resources into the military. Between 1998 and 2002, the annual increases in India’s military budget were respectively: 14 percent; 21 percent; 14 percent; 21 percent; and 17 percent.

However, it also bears note that the Hindu nationalist right, which forms the backbone of the BJP, and hence the NDA, has a longstanding affinity for Zionism, stretching back to colonial times. In short, the Hindu supremacists perceive the Zionists to be fighting a common Muslim enemy.

Destabilizing South Asia

For Pakistan, the prospect of advanced Israeli weaponry falling into Indian hands is deeply disturbing. Pakistani dictator Pervez Musharraf has called India’s purchase of Phalcon technology a “matter of serious concern,” for it will give the Indian military the ability to closely monitor Pakistan’s entire air space. Pakistani Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri warned that Sharon’s visit, “the primary purpose” of which “seems to be the sale of ultramodern and strategic weaponry,” could undermine the balance of power between South Asia’s two nuclear arms states. This warning was subsequently amplified by Foreign Ministry spokesman Masood Khan. Commenting on India’s plans to obtain Arrow missiles, Khan declared: “India’s buying antiballistic weaponry will disrupt the strategic balance in the region. We do not know what India will do with these weapons. Where will it unleash them?”

So alarmed is the Pakistani establishment, there have been calls from within the government for Islamabad to consider pursuing its own alliance with Israel. A first step in this direction would be for Pakistan to formally recognise the Zionist state. The Musharraf regime is also said to be considering seeking airborne early warning systems from the US, thus drawing South Asia still further into a costly and ruinous race for military advantage.

Pakistan’s fears are not without foundation. Sections of the Indian military—to say nothing of the Hindu chauvinist right—have urged their government to call Pakistan’s nuclear “bluff,” by staging cross-border raids into Pakistan-held Kashmir or even mounting a “limited,” conventional war against Pakistan aimed at demonstrating once and for all Indian superiority. The Indian militarists believe that airborne early warning systems and antiballistic missiles would be pivotal to preventing or withstanding a Pakistani nuclear attack.

Furthermore, Indian officials have repeatedly spoken of a US-Indian-Israeli axis in terms that make clear that for New Delhi such an alliance would be directed, in the first instance, at maximizing India’s geopolitical and military pressure on Pakistan.

India’s National Security Advisor Brajesh Misra all but openly appealed for such a triple alliance in a May 2003 address to the American Jewish Committee’s annual dinner. Mishra claimed that India, Israel and the US “have all been prime targets of terrorism” because they are democracies sharing “fundamental similarities,” then called for “a core, consisting of democratic societies” to spearhead the “global campaign against terrorism” so as to ensure it “is pursued to its logical conclusion, and does not run out of steam, because of other preoccupations.”

Making an argument that both encapsulates the Indian elite’s attitude toward the grievances of the Kashmiri people and the Zionists’ attitude toward the Palestinians, Mishra derided all discussion of the “root causes” of terrorism as “nonsense.” An “anti-terrorist” alliance, he affirmed, should “not get bogged down in definitional and causal arguments about terrorism.”

Indian-American lobby groups, long-known for their pro-BJP sympathies, subsequently joined forces with the American Jewish Committee and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee to press for US government approval of the Phalcon sale. Now they are promoting the Arrow antiballistic missile sale.

There are definite limits, however, to the convergence of US, Indian and Israeli interests. To the dismay of the BJP regime, the Bush administration took the Musharraf regime under its wing in September 2001 in exchange for Pakistan’s support for the invasion and occupation Afghanistan. While Washington has subsequently pressed Pakistan into curtailing its logistical and diplomatic support for the insurgency in Kashmir, it has not supported Indian government attempts to label Pakistan a “terrorist” state or allowed India to apply President Bush’s “pre-emptive” war doctrine in South Asia.

India, for its part, balked at endorsing the US’s illegal invasion of Iraq and has thus far spurned Washington’s appeals to send troops to assist the US-British occupation force. Just as significantly, India has resisted pressure from both the Bush administration and Israel that it curtail its ties with Iran. Russia, India and Iran have collaborated in seeking to limit US influence in post-Taliban Afghanistan.

That said, the BJP regime’s touting of an “anti-terrorist” alliance with the Bush administration and the Sharon regime speaks volumes about the predatory ambitions of the Indian ruling class. Moreover, whatever the future of the burgeoning military and intelligence ties between India and Israel they have already added a new, incendiary element to the geopolitics of South Asia, while sending a chilling message to India’s 130 million-strong Muslim minority.

Thursday, June 19, 2003

Gandhi: Zionism and anti-Semitism

Courtesy: The Gandhi Reader: A Source Book of His Life and Writings
Edited by Homer A. Jack
AMS Press, New York, 1956; pp. 317-322


Gandhi had some close Jewish friends, especiaIly in South Africa. There three of his closest Western co-workers were of Jewish ancestry: Henry S. L. Polak, Herman Kallenbach, and his secretary, Sonya Schlesin. Later, in 1939, Kallenbach paid a visit to Gandhi 'and lived with him at the Sevagram ashram. With the rise of Hitler and anti-Semitism in Germany, Gandhi felt compeIled to denounce this aspect of racism, which he felt was akin to the kind of religious and racial discrimination he had fought all his life. He did not, however, regard Zionism as the right answer to the Jewish problem.

Several letters have been received by me asking me to declare my views about the Arab-Jew question in Palestine and the persecution of the Jews in Germany. It is not without hesitation that I venture to offer my views on this very difficult question. My sympathies are all with the Jews. I have known them intimately in South Africa. Some of them became lifelong companions. Through these friends I came to learn much of their age-long persecution. They have been the untouchables of Christianity .The parallel between their treatment by Christians and the treatment of untouchables by Hindus is very close.

Religious sanction has been invoked in both cases for the justification of the inhuman treatment meted out to them. Apart from the friendships, therefore, there is the more common universal reason for my sympathy for the Jews.

But my sympathy does not blind me to the requirements of justice. The cry for the national home for the Jews does not make much appeal to me. The sanction for it is sought in the Bible and the tenacity with which the Jews have hankered after return to Palestine. Why should they not, like other peoples of the earth, make that country their home where they are born and where they earn their livelihood?

Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that England belongs to the English or France to the French. It is wrong and inhuman to impose the Jews on the Arabs. What is going on in Palestine today cannot be justified by any moral code of conduct. The mandates have no sanction but that of the last war. Surely it would be a crime against humanity to reduce the proud Arabs so that Palestine can be restored to the Jews partly or wholly as their national home.

The nobler course would be to insist on a just treatment of the Jews wherever they are born and bred. The Jews born in France are French in precisely the same sense that Christians born in France are French. If the Jews have no home but Palestine, will they relish the idea of being forced to leave the other parts of the world in which they are settled? Or do they want a double home where they can remain at will? This cry for the national home affords a colorable justification for the German expulsion of the Jews.

But the German persecution of the Jews seems to have no parallel in history. The tyrants of old never went so mad as Hitler seems to have gone. And he is doing it with religious zeal. For, he is propounding a new religion of exclusive and militant nationalism in the name of which any inhumanity becomes an act of humanity to be rewarded here and hereafter. The crime of an obviously mad but intrepid youth is being visited upon his whole race with unbelievable ferocity .If there ever could be a justifiable war in the name of and for humanity, a war against Germany, to prevent the wanton persecution of a whole race, would be completely justified. But I do not believe in any war. A discussion of the pros and cons of such a war is, therefore, outside my horizon or province.

But if there can be no war against Germany, even for such a crime as is being committed against the Jews, surely there can be no alliance with Germany. How can there be alliance between a nation which claims to stand for justice and democracy and one which is the declared enemy of both? Or is England drifting towards armed dictatorship and all it means?

Germany is showing to the world how efficiently violence can be worked when it is not hampered by any hypocrisy or weakness masquerading as humanitarianism. It is also showing how hideous, terrible and terrifying it looks in its nakedness.

Can the Jews resist this organized and shameless persecution? Is there a way to preserve their self-respect, and not to feel helpless, neglected and forlorn? I submit there is. No person who has faith in a living God need feel helpless or forlorn. Jehovah of the Jews is a God more personal than the God of the Christians, the Mussalmans or the Hindus, though as a matter of fact, in essence, He is common to all and one without a second and beyond description. But as the Jews attribute personality to God and believe that He rules every action of theirs, they ought not to feel helpless. If I were a Jew and were born in Germany and earned my livelihood there, I would claim Germany as my home even as the tallest gentile German might, and challenge him to shoot me or cast me in the dungeon; I would refuse to be expelled or to submit to discriminating treatment. And for doing this I should not wait for the fellow Jews to join me in civil resistance, but would have confidence that in the end the rest were bound to follow my example. If one Jew or all the Jews were to accept the prescription here offered, he or they cannot be worse off than now. And suffering voluntarily undergone will bring them an inner strength and joy which no number of resolutions of sympathy passed in the world outside Germany can. Indeed, even if Britain, France and America were to declare hostilities against Germany, they can bring no inner joy, no inner strength. The calculated violence of Hitler may even result in a general massacre of the Jews by way of his first answer to the declaration of such hostilities. But if the Jewish mind could be prepared for voluntary suffering, even the massacre I have imaged could be turned into a day of thanksgiving and joy that Jehovah had wrought deliverance of the race even at the hands of the tyrant. For to the God-fearing, death has no terror. It is a joyful sleep to be followed by a waking that would be all the more refreshing for the long sleep.

It is hardly necessary for me to point out that it is easier for the Jews than for the Czechs to follow my prescription. And they have in the Indian Satyagraha campaign in South Africa an exact parallel. There the Indians occupied precisely the same place that the Jews occupy in Germany. The persecutions had also a religious tinge. President Kruger used to say that the white Christians were the chosen of God and Indians were inferior beings created to serve the whites. A fundamental clause in the Transvaal constitution was that there should be no equality between the whites and colored races including Asiatics. There too the Indians were consigned to ghettos described as locations. The other disabilities were almost of the same type as those of the Jews in Germany. The Indians, a mere handful, resorted to Satyagraha without any backing from the world outside or the Indian Government. Indeed the British officials tried to dissuade the satyagrahis from their contemplated step. World opinion and the Indian Government came to their aid after eight years of fighting. And that too was by way of diplomatic pressure, not of a threat of war.

But the Jews of Germany can offer Satyagraha under infinitely better auspices than the Indians of South Africa. The Jews are a compact, homogeneous community in Germany. They are far more gifted than the Indians of South Africa. And they have organized world opinion behind them. I am convinced that, if someone with courage and vision can arise among them to lead them in non-violent action, the winter of their despair can in the twinkling of an eye be turned into the summer of hope. And what has today become a degrading man-hunt can be turned into a calm and determined stand offered by unarmed men and women possessing the strength of suffering given to them by Jehovah. It win be then a truly religious resistance offered against the godless fury of a dehumanized man. The German Jews will score a lasting victory over the German gentiles in the sense that they will have converted the latter to an appreciation of human dignity .They will have rendered service to fellow-Germans and proved their title to be the real Germans as against those who are today dragging, however unknowingly, the German name into the mire.

And now a word to the Jews in Palestine. I have no doubt that they are going about in the wrong way. The Palestine of the Biblical conception is not a geographical tract. It is in their hearts. But if they must look to the Palestine of geography as their national home, it is wrong to enter it under the shadow of the British gun. A religious act cannot be performed with the aid of the bayonet or the bomb. They can settle in Palestine only by the goodwill of the Arabs. They should seek to convert the Arab heart. The same God roles the Arab heart who rules the Jewish heart. They can offer Satyagraha in front of the Arabs and offer themselves to be shot or thrown into the Dead Sea without raising a little finger against them. They will find the world opinion in their favor in their religious aspiration. There are hundreds of ways of reasoning with the Arabs, if they will only discard the help of the British bayonet. As it is, they are co-sharers with the British in despoiling a people who have done no wrong to them.

I am not defending the Arab excesses. I wish they had chosen the way of non-violence in resisting what they rightly regard as an unwarrantable encroachment upon their country. But according to the accepted canons of right and wrong, nothing can be said against the Arab resistance in the face of overwhelming odds.

Let the Jews who claim to be the chosen race prove their title by choosing the way of non-violence for vindicating their position on earth. Every country is their home including Palestine not by aggression but by loving service. A Jewish friend has sent me a book called The Jewish Contribution to Civilization by Cecil Roth. It gives a record of what the Jews have done to enrich the world's literature, art, music, drama, science, medicine, agriculture, etc. Given the will, the Jew can refuse to be treated as the outcaste of the West, to be despised or patronized. He can command the attention and respect of the world by being man, the chosen creation of God, instead of being man who is fast sinking to the brute and forsaken by God. They can add to their many contributions the surpassing contribution of non-violent action.


*Reprinted with permission from Hariian, November 26, 1938. Also in M. K. Gandhi, Non-Violence in Peace and War (Ahmedabad: Navaji'lan, 1942), VoI. I, pp. 183-88.