Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


Govinda Bhattarai: Dangerous Alliance

Dangerous Alliance


By Govinda Bhattarai

AS usual, we in Nepal again needed someone from far across the Atlantic to point out that the alliance between the seven agitating political parties and the Maoists was "dangerous." Long ago, our compatriots had said that. But no one seemed to have listened to them.

US Ambassador James F. Moriarty's recent remarks have triggered a wave of debate for and against the 12-point agreement between the mainstream political forces who are for a peaceful resolution and the dissidents of reverse disposition. He said that for the democratic process to re-function smoothly, two constitutional forces ? the King and the major political players ? must narrow down their distance. Moriarty sees a solution in the alliance between the King and the parties to isolate the "terrorists."

America that claims itself to be the world's watchdog and patron of democracy all over may have its own reasons to dislike the "unnatural" pact and denounce the insurgency. America, in practice if not in principle, has not taken a step back from McCarthyism. Communists have only slipped to becoming the enemy number two, second only to the Islamic terrorists. And sometimes the two identities overlap. Nepal 's Maoists bear both the tags. First, they say they are fighting to establish communist rule, something that stirs the American Senate and Congress, the White House, the State Department and sometimes even the Pentagon. Secondly, the rebels have guns over their shoulders and are resorting to killing, kidnapping and extortion to achieve their "political" goal. Both images place the Maoists across the fence of US President George W. Bush's policy of "either you are with us or with the terrorists."

Nepalis are as anxious of their freedom as the Americans are confident about their own. The people of one of the world's poorest countries are more concerned about stabilising their derailed democracy as the Americans are for preserving Arab oil. They strongly believe that there is no survival without peace. But the Maoists have been putting stumbling blocks on the way to achieving this goal. Would the rebels take a U-turn to peace and negotiations as they have promised?

Yes, one can almost see the green signal emerging on the horizon. The Maoists seem to be changing their position. Whatever the reason, be it international pressure or their self realisation that violence is not the solution, the Maoists have implicitly hinted that they are desirous and ready to give this stalemate a safe landing. A question may now arise as to whether they would conform to the people's wishes as promised. Are they really serious about what they have said, that is, do they want a peaceful solution to the problem? The Maoists' motive for holding the hotly debated constituent assembly election stems from their conviction that people would vote for their cause. They have coerced people into submitting to their command. And they falsely believe that their coercion holds good in a democratic exercise like an election. At gunpoint, despite reluctance or even hatred, one promptly does what s/he is asked to. But when it comes to putting a mark on the ballot paper in a secluded room, voters overcome their fears and go for what is best for them. Despite the disapproval shown for the way the parties ruled, the Maoists do not have enough mandate to have their agenda passed. Now the same question emerges again. Will they remain committed to what they have vowed? Will they embrace multiparty parliamentary democracy in which the people elect their representatives through suffrage? If yes, the problem is over.

But the problem persists and cannot be resolved instantly as if by a magical wand. Nowhere in the world have the red revolutionaries given up peacefully. Whether in Russia or China or any other country across the globe, they have always waded through the blood of their fellow fighters to power. Aren't the Nepali Maoists of the same species? Their track record has already proved this.

Intimidation

First, they intimidated the people by murdering, maiming, abduction and extortion despite their promise not to do so, even during the ceasefire they unilaterally announced. Secondly, they already walked out of the peace talks twice, in a way declaring that they are not for peace though peaceful means. No one can guarantee they will not leave the negotiating table for a third time. Thirdly, they have not stopped their violence. They say that whatever they are doing (killing their own brethren and destroying public and private property), they are doing it for the 'people.' And ironically, it is these poor people who have become victims of their 'liberation movement.' Are 'people' abstract things?

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>

ALSO:

Buildup:

Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>

ALSO:

Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news