Neither with the terrorists nor with the US
by Sitaram Yechury* The initial war hysteria and bellicose rhetoric of the Bush Administration is giving way to monotonous repetition of a "long and protracted war". Over the last two years, the CIA has provided the FBI with approximately 100 names of people associated with the Qaeda network who have entered the country legally in most cases. Some of the Qaeda members and other identified associates of terrorist groups in the US have been subjects of investigation, but their cases were closed because no crimes were uncovered.' This, surely, does not, in any manner, absolve the suspicion. However, even without hard evidence being established, the US military machine has moved into the Persian Gulf and taken positions. The US's principal cheer-leader, Britain, has also pitched in with its submarines. This will surely lead to the entrenchment of US military presence in many new areas. Utilising this opportunity, the US is seeking to seal its total control of this oil rich region. Meanwhile, in the so-called battle of democracies against terrorism, the US is busy trying to prop-up the Northern Alliance, which is battling the Taliban in Afghanistan. Its immediate agenda appears to be to replace the Taliban as the Government in Afghanistan. The US has indicated to bring back the former Monarch, Zaheer Shah, who was overthrown in 1973 when a pro-Soviet socialist government came into office. The "battle of democracies" is to be won by restoring monarchy in Afghanistan! It was such US manoeuvres, to advance US strategic interests, that resulted in the creation of the Taliban in the first place. This, in turn, became the breeding ground for professional terrorists. How many such nurseries will the US go on creating jeopardising the lives of innocent millions? Since the end of the Cold War, US hegemonic efforts intensified. Apart from its known military interventions, it paid scant respect to international opinion and agreements such as the Kyoto Protocol, the United Nation's conference against racism, the attempt to unilaterally abrogate the ABM Treaty etc. Its hegemonic efforts went to the extent that five days prior to the horrendous attacks in New York and Washington, the US House of Representatives passed what is known as "Vietnam Human Rights Act". This proposes to allocate US$2 million for each year, 2002 and 2003, to "provide assistance, through appropriate non-governmental organisations, for the support of individuals and organisations to promote human rights and non-violent democratic change in Vietnam". In simple language, this financial assistance is for the overthrow of socialism in Vietnam. In Korea, the Bush Administration stopped negotiations with North Korea unilaterally which had begun under an agreed framework in 1994. This was necessary to declare North Korea as a "rogue State" in order to justify the US nuclear missile defence programme. As a result, the ongoing process for the re-unification of the North and South have virtually halted. US efforts to interfere in and control all events across the globe have earned for it the notoriety of playing the role of world's policeman. It would be a worse tragedy, if the US Administration seeks to utilise the September 11 human tragedy in a cynical and a diabolic manner to strengthen its hegemonic designs over the world. The US attempts to use the death of over 6,000 innocent lives to advance its global interests must be resisted. The failure to do so will lead to greater human tragedies. It is in this context that the statement of US President Bush that the world is either with the US or with the terrorists must be viewed. The answer must be given: we are neither with the terrorists nor with the US Administration.
* * ** Sitaram Yechury is a Political Bureau member of the Communist Party of India (M)