Category Archives: Politics/Diplomacy
Mahanth S. Joishy is Editor of usindiamonitor.
Barack Obama is only the 17th human being in history to be re-elected President of the United States. In most second terms, some cabinet members resign and new ones are hired or shuffled around in a predictable beltway equivalent of musical chairs. 2013 is no exception. Prominent administration officials such as Hillary Clinton and Timothy Geithner are out. Obama has recently announced four new replacement appointments that will have a major impact on US foreign policy in general, and on India in particular: John Kerry for Secretary of State, Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense, Jack Lew for Secretary of the Treasury, and John Brennan for CIA Director. Read the rest of this entry
There is a question that has taken on more and more meaning as India increases in importance on the world stage, while Indian-Americans are involved in American politics as never before. Which candidate, Barack Obama or Mitt Romney would be a better president on issues that are important to India and Indians?
Predictably, both candidates have kissed up to Indian-American donors and speak highly of India when given the opportunity. Both claim that India is an important ally and friend to the United States. Strikingly, neither candidate discussed India in the foreign policy debate this week. In truth, it is difficult to accurately forecast the answer to this question based on past records and statements. It’s also unclear how much influence a president can bring to bear on these issues. But it’s worth speculating on. Read the rest of this entry
Mahanth S. Joishy is Editor of usindiamonitor.com
The fatal shooting of innocent people at the Sikh temple (Gurdwara) in Oak Creek, Wisconsin brought to the surface deep underlying tensions in American society. They may normally simmer below the surface, but last week we saw the worst of what can happen in modern America when latent hatred comes to a boil. The incident also brought out the best in people, as evidenced by the heroism displayed by some of the victims and the local police.
The shootout resulted in the death of gunman Wade Michael Page. With him perish hopes of ascertaining exactly what motivated his murderous mind, and whether he was sane or not. We are left to debate and conjecture, but his life does offer up some clues. We can be sure of the following: (1) It was a simple, lone act of terrorism (political killing of innocent people). (2) It was motivated by some combination of racism and religious bigotry. (3) Holmes had military training, and (4) known Ne0-Nazi leanings, including his role in a skinhead rock band.
It is early yet, and much evidence is to emerge, but below are the critical issues that will be in the news and part of political discourse in the weeks to come. Read the rest of this entry
Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and friends, please go somewhere to play so the adults can do their jobs. We have enough real and difficult problems in America that our government, which unfortunately includes you, should be working on. Your letter/attempt at character assassination of State Department Deputy Chief of Staff, Huma Abedin shows thinking that is completely decoupled from reality and astounding for its level of ignorance and xenophobia. This letter should have been express-mailed to your therapists, not printed on U.S. Congress stationery.
Let’s call a spade a spade. We all know what this slander against Huma Abedin is really about: racism and anti-Muslim sentiment against a brown female with a South Asian background for being successful in the US foreign policy establishment. Shame on you. I would take the background check conducted by the State Department over your ranting any day. No, Abedin is not a national security threat or part of any conspiracy. Quite the opposite, she is serving our Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with distinction. We somehow need you to “get right” with this fact. Wrap your head around it.
Interesting data. According to polling by Lake Research Partners published by Rediff recently, 76% of Indian-Americans are leaning toward voting for Obama, with only 8% saying they will vote for Romney.
Quite soon we will be publishing a detailed analysis on the positions of both candidates vis-a-vis issues important to Indians and Indian-Americans.
Dear President Obama, we understand that you are in the thick of a close presidential race. We know the realities of modern politics and the silly season, and respect your right to attack Governor Mitt Romney on any number of issues. There’s certainly plenty of material to work with. Romney has been doing it to you too, and it’s fair to help voters understand his background through your speeches and advertisements.
However, we draw the line when you make something out to be unacceptable while you are intelligent enough to know better. It leads us to believe you are being intellectually dishonest for purely political purposes- and it’s an insult to your audience. Surviving in office through these means is not worth it. It is unfair to bash Romney over outsourcing jobs to call centers in India for the following reasons. I will be sending this to your campaign staff and I expect a response on each of these items- and will be happy to publish all of them. Read the rest of this entry
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited India from May 7-9 as part of a larger Asia swing with an itinerary encompassing China and Bangladesh. Coincidentally or not, Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee was on hand in Dhaka during Clinton’s two-day stopover in Bangladesh, the first by a sitting US Secretary of State since the arrival of Colin Powell in 2003. This came right after her nearly week-long visit with China, where most headlines focused on the controversial high-level negotiations over the fate of blind human rights activist Chen Guangcheng.
A historically significant paradigm is playing out in U.S.-India relations, somewhat below the radar, receiving minimal fanfare because the meme about Iran sanction disagreements between the two nations has dominated headlines. With all the gender inequality still pervasive in both countries, it’s appropriate to applaud some girl power when we see it. With the successful confirmation of Nancy J. Powell to the post of U.S. Ambassador to India, and her reporting for work on April 19, 2012 there is an unprecedented level- by far- of female leadership guiding the delicate bilateral relationship today. Read the rest of this entry