Routes and regimes

…and the Indian wisdom concerning mangoes and trees

It is impossible to eschew sarcasm when you read that the alternative supply route through the Central Asian states “could leave the United States more reliant on cooperation from authoritarian countries like Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, which have poor records when it comes to democracy and human rights.”

One would think that their current supply route runs through Canada.

13 thoughts on “Routes and regimes”

  1. Are you suggesting the likes of Karimov are better than Musharraf or Zardari. Despite all the terror from Pakistan , Pakistan is far freer than Uzbekistan

  2. Barnett Rubin, Ahmed Rashid and company at work. One hopes that the incoming administration treats NYT with the kind of *reverence* and *aloofness* that it deserves.

  3. xyz,

    No. Rather, that Pakistan also fits the description of having a “poor record on democracy and human rights.” And you disagree?

    Btw, according to Freedom House’s 2008 report, Kyrgyzstan is freer than Pakistan. Kazakhstan and Tajikistan have the same score as Pakistan. Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan are less free. But Canada outranks all of these countries by a mile. But what good is it as a supply route?

  4. Not just Barney Rubin, but also Zbigniew Brzezinski. He too has been marketing this crap, along with other worrisome ideas.


    Zbigniew recently made use of his daughter Mika’s morning news show to pitch his views on the US military buildup in Afghanistan. His ties with Obama and GatesIII notwithstanding, the US is planning to send 30,000 more troops there, doubling its force levels. At least Brzezinki admits that “Durand Line” (Afghan-Pak border) is a phony construct. Then he makes a pitch for China, which he regards as his Far Emperor. Note that Brzezinski, as the architect of Trilateralism, once deemed Japan as the Asian pillar of his anti-Soviet triad. But no longer – the Japanese are now being discarded, now that Brzezinski has found someone better to shack up with. Finally, he says that India’s treatment of its Muslims is responsible for the Mumbai attacks.

  5. Sanjay,

    Agree with you on Zbig’s windmills becoming a windmill around the necks of democracies (US and India) in the game going fwd. In any case, I doubt zbig will get much traction going fwd. The boomers, who dominated SD as also other govt bureucracies in the US are on their way out. By 2012, we should see a less ideologically hardwired new gen come in, hopefully with some fresh air.

    Just curious, were you Sanjay M in a previous avatar in a phorum we know so well? The language, the argument, the diction… compellingly similar onlee.

  6. Sud,

    Actually you will surprised how much the old school will come back under the democrats. During the Iraq turmoil, Zbig came out as a realist and foremost thinker. What he says will find ears where it matters.

    Mumbai islamic terror narrative in the west, that India’s monitory treatment is problem, is real. It has been put in place a while ago, egged on by Congress I itself, and came to full force even as jihadists have been killing innocents a month ago in Mumbai. That’s the framework in which the west is thinking right now. Imagine if that Hindu Nationalists party was in power!!

    That’s why India has to find it’s own footing without the silliness of Afghan war and American pressure on Pakistan. The latter is not going to happen come January. US-India strategic relations will take a downturn next year especially if BJP-NDA comes to power in May with Shourie and Modi in cabinet. Probably a good thing in the long run, if it happens.

  7. Chandra,

    Agreed. Pls read Vanni Capelli’s compelling piece in this month’s Pragati.

    Thats 20/20 clarity for the incoming US admin and Congress.

  8. Sud,

    Yes, that’s me.

    Brzezinski’s hatred and fixation with Moscow continues, but of course he’s never really been opposed to communism itself. All he cares about is his blood-feud with the Russians, and his entire worldview is shaped by that. So he’s then stuck with the burden of trying to take his Russia-centric Russophobic strategies and somehow transform them into a language that will appeal to broader audiences. Naturally, this requires a lot of contrivance and juggling.

    Watch the latest clip of Brzezinski losing his cool on daughter Mika’s morning news show:


    So it’s not only India’s existence that he’s trying to undermine, but also Israel’s, too.

  9. Brzezinski gives more of his thoughts on Israel-vs-Palestine, and India-vs-Pakistan:


    Note his technical acknowledgement of India’s right to strike Pakistani terrorist camps. Also note his recognition that his late colleague Samuel Huntington’s thesis on “Clash of Civilizations” may be right. His zigzagging is odd – it’s almost like he’s the Joe Lieberman of of geo-strategic analysis.

  10. He has no political judgement, if you mean ethics. He’s a political predator, bound only by his hatred of the Soviets, and what they did to his native Poland. His hatred is now transferred to Russia.

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