Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Wisdom from India

I don't get to post links to Indian web sites very often but here's one worth clicking. It's a fine piece of commentary from Rajiv Desai aptly titled: NAM in Cuba’s Jurassic park.

Some excerpts:

NAM was conceived by Jawaharlal Nehru as a romantic forum for “third world” countries that preferred not to take sides in the Cold War. In practice, like Indian foreign policy, NAM tilted heavily to the Soviet bloc. Perhaps the most egregious example of the tilt was the lead role played in the forum by Cuba.

Forums like NAM are a haven for ideologue leaders like Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez and, of course, Fidel Castro. They are for yesterday’s ideas and perennial malcontents. There’s no place in such a gathering for a rapidly developing country like India.

Just how important the summit was to the Indian delegation can be judged from the call I received from one of its members asking for information on a place in New York City’s famed borough of Manhattan, where he was headed from Havana. Indian participation was purely perfunctory, largely to mollify the spoilt-brat Left.

Perhaps the most telling comment came from a dissident human rights group that is banned in Cuba. “Several dozen governments that are full members of NAM are among the worst and most fanatical civil and political rights violators on a world scale,” the Cuban Commission on Human Rights and National Reconciliation noted in a scathing statement, regretting that human rights “are not a real and effective priority” of NAM.

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