17-Feb-2007

Coercion

We learn that India's vote against Iran was coerced. We also learn through the same US official, that we will continue to be coerced:
As a "first step" towards tightening the screws on Iran, India should withdraw from the proposed Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline project, the former U.S. official argued. "This would send a strong message to Iran, while not hurting India's economic interests" because the pipeline was unlikely to be economically viable, he claimed. "I am not sure what kind of investor would put up money for a pipeline running from Iran through Pakistan. What happens if there is an incident in Kashmir?"

Walking away from the IPI pipeline project, said Mr. Rademaker, would, therefore, be "a low cost way of India demonstrating its commitment to non-proliferation."

He clarified that the U.S. did not consider the Iran pipeline to be a "litmus test" for India. But scrapping the project "would be a smart thing for India to do." India, he stressed, "needs to stop thinking of itself as a Third World country... and start aligning itself with the First World countries."

Galling, especially from the current US administration. So it is refreshing when someone lays it out like it is:
"One state, the United States, has overstepped its national borders and is imposing its legal system on other states," Mr. Putin said. "This is very dangerous. Nobody feels secure anymore because nobody feels protected by international law. This policy fuels the arms race... encourages countries to acquire weapons of mass destruction.

"They keep teaching Russia democracy, but don't want to learn it themselves. Why do they resort to bombings and shellings all the time? Could it be because of a lack of political culture, respect for democracy and law?"

Correction: US Ambassador to India says Rademaker is not an US official, and that his remarks were not accurately reported by The Hindu. As to the first point, he is not an outsider. He's been associated with government in some form or other since 1987, and most importantly he was the Acting Assistant Secretary, Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation till sometime last year and should have intimate knowledge of the Iran vote affair. As the second point, The Hindu says:
The Hindu would like to clarify that Mr. Rademaker spoke before an audience of approximately 20 people and that its Associate Editor, Siddharth Varadarajan, was present and took detailed notes of his remarks, and that the quotes attributed to Mr. Rademaker are wholly accurate.
I'll go with The Hindu.

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