How to Lose Real Friends and Make Imagined Enemies
There are some real enemies and some only in imagination. Often married women – no contempt to female readers intended – talk about such enemies on the in-laws side. The relationship between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law, among different daughters-in-law, and daughter-in-law and sister-in-law are often uneasy as each of them considers the other one as her…
There are some real enemies and some only in imagination. Often married women – no contempt to female readers intended – talk about such enemies on the in-laws side. The relationship between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law, among different daughters-in-law, and daughter-in-law and sister-in-law are often uneasy as each of them considers the other one as her rival – not often real, but in imagination.
President George Bush-II – though a male and a ‘macho’ too – suffers from such a syndrome. More than the real enemies, he is busy in creating enemies for himself. His father George Bush-I made his best friend, Saddam Hussein, the Enemy Number-I as he had certain secret plans for the region in the immediate post-Cold War days. As an obedient son Bush-II too carried the father’s policy and finally got Saddam eliminated.
Now he has made Russia an enemy though the latter had till recently no plan whatsoever to consider itself as the rival of Uncle Sam. Its President Vladimir Putin always considered himself a close ally of the West. Even during the US-led wars over Afghanistan and Iraq the rump state of Russia stood behind the West. But George Bush-II and company considered this position of Putin as his weakness and started cornering him.
Now that he has been pushed to the wall there was no option left for the Russian President. Putin became the latest one to join the anti-American camp. Early this year he openly revolted against the Western hegemony and the US move to tighten the noose around his country’s neck.
Vladimir Putin, on February 10 in Munich, strongly denounced the United States and its allies – and that too in the presence of 250 top officials and political leaders from around the world – for encircling Russia with long range missiles in several East European nations, which were once the close allies of the then Soviet Union. Putin abandoned the strategic retreat policy, which his country has been following for the last 15 years, and threatened the US with tit for tat.
Now he became the first Russian President since World War-II to visit Teheran and cocked a snook at the United States. He took a trip notwithstanding the baseless western propaganda that he may be targeted by the suicide bombers in Teheran.
Putin rubbed shoulders with arch-enemy of George Bush-II, President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad of Iran only days after the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, lectured the Russian President about the importance of democracy in the world’s largest country.
At the summit of five Caspian Sea littoral states – Russia, Iran, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan – on October 16 it was resolved that no country would provide base for military action against anyone of them.
This is a big political and strategic victory for Iran. It needs to be mentioned that the United States used the military, air and sea bases in the Central and West Asian countries to invade Afghanistan and Iraq. Azerbaijan was also one of them. Today the same United States is finding itself greatly isolated. It is not that the relationship among these five countries was very cordial earlier. In fact, the United States has compelled them to close their ranks.
Poor George Bush-II does not know as to what he is doing. After about a millennium the Christianised West was finding itself united. In the earlier Crusade centuries (between 1099 and 1291) though there apparently was unity among the Christian world yet there were bitter internecine quarrels among them too. After the tussle between Roman Catholic and Orthodox Church came the bloody quarrel between Catholics and Protestants in the Medieval centuries.
Then the West was mired in the controversy between the religion and godless and secular philosophies. In the 19th century different imperialist powers fought some great battles in the name of nationalism. That phenomenon continued till the end of the World War-II in 1945. Crores of Christians died at the hands of Christians – not always in the name of faith, but for worldly loot. For the next 45 years, that is till 1990, there was a bitter Cold War between the then Soviet Union and the United States – once again the two western powers were at loggerheads.
After 1990 came the first opportunity for the West to cement ties among themselves. There was no contradiction left among the advanced and most developed western countries of Europe, North America and Australia as they all became ‘liberal’ and ‘tolerant’ Christians – though in between two Christian sects, the Catholic Croats and Orthodox Serbs fought some bloodiest battles in Balkan.
However, apart from this aberration things were quite smooth in the West. In contrast the Islamic world just south and east to the West was in total disarray and disunited. But men like the Bushes – both father and son – are masters in squandering the opportunity. In Central America the US created problem for itself leading to the revival of anti-US front. While Putin was in Iran, the Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez was meeting the Cuban patriarch, Fidel Castro, in Havana.
Capitalising on the global situation, the Evangelists – a sort of Protestants – were now busy thrusting their own brand of ‘capitalistic’ Christianity on essentially Catholic Central America, where liberalisation theology had gained much ground. And a stupid Evangelist, Pat Robertson, an aide of Bush was so fed up with Chavez and South America that a year back he publicly called for the assassination of Venezuelan President.
Iranians were quick to capitalise on the new emerging contradiction within the West and started building bridges with Venezuela. In this so-called unipolar world Bush and Company became so zealous that they overlooked some serious strategic facts. Instead of deploying long range missiles in Muslim Central Asian Republics and directing them towards Russia the United States has these weapons of mass destruction firmly placed in countries like Romania, Poland, Bulgaria, etc. – once again pitting these small East European countries against Russia for no big reason.
China, apparently having good business ties with the United States, always looks towards it with suspicion because of its habit of provoking North Korea, a good ally of Beijing. Besides, like Russia, the United States is also keen to encircle China with old friends, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand. The United States has finally forced China, Russia, Iran and Central Asian countries to form a grand alliance.
Over-confidence sometimes leads a community or nation to disaster. Soon such a country finds itself in the dustbin of history. New friend, India, has to fathom these geo-strategic realities before, rather unconsciously, ganging up against China – of course in alliance with the United States.