Tuesday, Jul 01, 2003
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Letters to the Editor
Sir, I think it inconceivable that any responsible government could even consider sending Indian troops to Iraq after the U.S. and the U.K. waged an illegal war with total contempt for world opinion and now asks "third world" countries for help. The long-term consequences are equally serious. Antagonising the Islamic world makes India more vulnerable to terrorist attacks. One can only subscribe to the opinion of Amitav Ghosh in Lessons of empire (June 24) that India has "much to lose and nothing to gain" through such adventures. What "nationalists" are our ruling politicians?
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Sir, The ill-designed Iraq attack, by the U.S. and the U.K., motivated by their super egoistic, imperialist outlook, was condemned by all persons of wisdom in all countries including India. Now the question of sending troops by India is hanging fire.
Amitav Ghosh, a conscientious writer, with a deep sense of history and perspective, has rightly written that it will be a great blunder if India sends soldiers there as `India has much to lose and nothing to gain from this'.
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Sir, Any patriotic individual will dismiss the theory that our troops can do a better service in other countries. We have not trained them to be placed at the mercy of other countries, rather they should be in our land for maintaining/protecting our frontiers. Though we may get a few contracts in Iraq and Indian corporates may stand to gain, we should not yield to such requests.We must maintain good relationships with all countries and should not serve the whims of a few countries.
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Sir, The U.S. Government's request for deployment of Indian troops in Iraq has sinister implications. From the Americans point of view Indian participation would lend the occupied American/British forces in Iraq a genuine multilateral image. In addition, the Indian Army is well disciplined and has a proven track record in similar situations elsewhere as a peacekeeping force. The situation in Iraq is entirely different. The Americans used the ploy to get rid of Saddam Hussain in order to grab Iraq's oil fields. Ten years ago they were providing arms and ammunition and military hardware to Iraq to fight Iran and during that conflict Iraq used nerve gas against innocent civilians in Iran killing thousands.
The U.S. is interested only in taking over the fields and sell the oil to other countries to make money. Most of the contracts for developing Iraq were given to American companies. If India sends troops they have to work under the command of the occupying forces.
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