By Yasmeen Ali
India's launch of a nuclear-capable MRBM missile barely evoke a US yawn by ThisCantBeHappening
India's successful test of a ballistic missile with a range of more than 5,000 km, was
was uncriticised by the US.
Contrast this lack of concern with the America's obsessive concern about a suspected or potential nuclear program by Iran, or to US threats over the failed rocket launch by North Korea a few days earlier.
India has increased its military spending by 13% this fiscal year, to roughly US $38
billion, according to an April 20 article in The Independent (UK) titled, "India's nuclear
ambition must not be ignored"). Yet this has not raised US ire -- or even US eyebrows!
India, the bully of the South Asia region, has happily announced its entry in an
exclusive club within the comity of nations, having now demonstrated the capability to
hit a target at 5,000 kilometers.
The Chinese newspaper, Global Times (Beijing), hit out at Western countries for
displaying double standards for not condemning the test firing of the Agni-V, writing:
"The West chooses to overlook India's disregard of nuclear and missile control treaties,"
the editorial said. "The West remains silent on the fact that India's military spending
increased by 17 percent."
Double standards it is!
There is a club within a club, of countries of the world who can get away with
murder(literally), while others must behave or face the stick of the Master, with
Pakistan being the whipping boy of choice!
It is all about the geo-political interests of US in the region. At issue is the perceived need among politicians and military leaders in Washington to contain China and prevent it from possibly developing into a rival super power in near future.
The need is to find and support a country within the region that can act, or seem to act,
as a deterrent to China.
Obvious choice: India.
What the US has completely overlooked in this game of regional hegemony is that when
you let the genie out of the bottle, it will refuse to go back inside. It can, one day, turn
upon the master, once its heart's desire of being let out is fulfilled.
The US has a bad record of learning lessons from history. In the short- term interest of
countering Russian influence in Afghanistan back in the late 1970s and early 1980s, it
had created the Mujahedeen (now re-christened as the Taliban). Today, the specter of
that ghost still hounds them. But it's not really a ghost is it?
Now, blubbering in Afghanistan, caught in a trap of it's own making, the US does
not know how to extricate itself from this folly!