Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The Marxist Betrayal

These are random thoughts of mine based on previous reading. I do not refer to any specific text per se.

The history of the Marxists in India has been one of repeated betrayal of the country. They have let India down time and again when it came to the clash of interests with the Soviet Union or China. Their political loyalties lay outside.

M.K. Gandhi broad-based the Indian National Congress to include the teeming masses belonging to all ethnic, caste and religious groups in the anti-colonial freedom struggle. To quote B.R. Nanda "From a three day Christmas week picnic of the upper-middle class in one of the principal cities of India, it became a mass organization with its roots in small towns and villages". The Indian Marxists never had this rural base. There's was an urbanized elite leadership.

Stalin entered into a pact with Hitler in 1939. The understanding reached between the two was for Germany to annex western Poland while the Soviets annex eastern Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and parts of Finland. It was a territorial demarcation of war spoils between Europe's two most expansionist and authoritarian regimes. The Community Party of India then supported the independence struggle with a series of blitzkrieg trade union action, shut downs, gheraos, strikes and sabotage which crippled industrial activity. The railway workers, the sailors, the dockers and the textile workers belonging to the Marxist trade unions led the strikes. The intent was to weaken the colonial hold on the Indian economy and open a third front against Britain given that Stalin and Hilter had joined on an anti-western platform.

However, Hitler attacked the Soviet Union in June 1941. German troops had reached the outskirts of Moscow by December that year. The Soviet Union had suffered unparalleled destruction and did an immediate policy reversal to join the allied war effort. The Communist Party of India changed track in tandem. It decried the Indian freedom struggle as weakening the international struggle against fascism, a movement which the Marxists had initially allied with. The Communists pulled out of the freedom struggle. M.K. Gandhi had launched the Quit India Movement in the summer of 1942. The Communists turned informants and helped the colonial authorities to identify and imprison the entire leadership of the freedom struggle. The Indian Marxists supported the British in this crucial interlude given the new Soviet-British alliance against Hitler.

M.K. Gandhi and the Congress hierarchy were behind bars between 1942 and 1945. The Congress had convincingly won the 1937 elections while the Muslim League had suffered a devastating defeat at the hands of the Congress in all Muslim majority provinces of pre-partition India except East Bengal. While the Congress leadership had been imprisoned, Jinnah was free to organize the Muslim League and strengthen its holds over sections of the Muslim population of British India. The fortunes of the League rose between 1942 and 1945. The Marxists meanwhile supported the ideological case for partition arguing that the Muslim population was entitled to self-determination. This was interesting given the Soviet Union's own suppression of Muslims in the Caucasus and Central Asia. Stalin had deported the Chechens and Tartars to Siberia en-masse!

The British partitioned India in 1947. Pakistan immediately expelled its Marxists who fled to India!

Nehru, a self-proclaimed socialist, did not oppose Communist China's annexation of Tibet in 1950. Tibet had an area of 471,700 square miles. China was then fighting the United States in the Korean war and Nehru could have easily retained the colonial-era Indian military presence in Lhasa and consolidated it further in order to ensure Tibetan independence. Furthermore, Nehru supported Peking's cause in the United Nations. China responded by annexing the 15,000 square mile Aksai Chin in what remained of Indian-held Kashmir in 1957. Pakistan had earlier annexed Baltistan, Gilgit, Hunza and Muzafarabad that had an area of 32,000 square miles.

The Nehru administration was not even aware of that development in Aksai Chin while his Marxist Minister of Defence, Krishna Menon continued to support China in international fora such as the United Nations. Taiwan then occupied China's seat at the Security Council. The Indian Marxists later defended Chinese actions in Aksai Chin pointing out that enclave's historical links with Chinese-held East Turkestan, now called Xinjiang.

China invaded the North East Frontier Agency with an area of 32,000 square miles in 1962 and then quite as suddenly withdrew its troops. The road to Assam was open and Nehruvian India lay prostrate. The Indian Marxists defended Chinese actions on the alleged grounds that NEFA had historical links with Tibet. Not one of them questioned China's initial hold on East Turkestan and Tibet on historical grounds to begin with. China had no valid territorial claim on either under modern international law. China detonated the nuclear device in October, 1964. The Indian Marxists welcomed that step as part of the global war against international imperialism! Yet, when India exploded its second nuclear device in May, 1998, the Indian Marxists opposed that as an unnecessary belligerence.

The Indian Marxists have repeatedly let India down. They do not have Indian national interests at heart. They currently control the Departments of History in major Indian universities such as JNU. With that platform, they are able to twist the past to suit their nebulous aims in the present. I refer here to Habib Irfan, Harbans Mukhia, K.N. Panikkar, R.S. Sharma, Romila Thapar and Sarvapalli Gopal. Other individuals such as Arundhati Roy, Barkha Datta, Brinda Karat, Mani Shankhar Aiyer, N. Ram and Praful Bidwai in India, and Meera Nanda, Sarmila Bose, Sugato Bose and Sumantro Bose overseas continue to occupy the intellectual and media space in a disproportionate manner. They leverage this vantage point to weaken India!

48 comments:

cynical nerd said...

Jaffna, you laid it bare! The last para is the holy grail of the India-baiters. I wish this post of yours is spread far and wide.

Just to add, the Marxists also supported the Tianenmen massacre.

FYI, SABHA has posted historical paper cuttings of Marxists and Stalinsts.
http://www.sabha.info/history.html

Note how papers like The Hindu came out against them back then. Now everything has changed.

history_lover said...

@Jaffna one may have differences with the leftists in India but to to accuse them of not having Indian interests at heart is rather too much.One could say that they are blinded by ideology but to accuse them of being anti national !
In fact one could argue that that elements of the rightwing by alienating minorities are weakening India rather than strengthening it.

Jaffna said...

History_Lover,

I do sincerely think that the Indian Marxists have compromised national interest. I gave the reasons and I think they are pretty convincing.

The minorities are not a cohesive unit. The Sikhs, Christians and Muslims do not form one constituency. Their interests would be better served if their leadership is not too closely allied with the Marxists.

The Indian right that you refer to are in reactive mode - they sense right or wrong that the Hindu majority of 82% has been taken for granted and that national interest has been compromised.

Remember, that the Marxist left also supported Ceaucescu and wife -the two most brutal leaders of Romania when the rest of the world was alive to the gross human rights abuses in that country.

And as Cynical Nerd correctly pointed out, the Marxists supported the Chinese clampdown at Tienanmen square.

The Indian Marxists have a rabid hatred for anything that would make India strong. Please give me one instance where they have supported any policy that makes India strong militarily or economically.

Cynical Nerd: Many thanks for the feedback and link. I will check it out. Much appreciated.

Best regards

Prashant Kothari said...

Jaffna

Bravo! Agree with you 100%.

We need to expose the Indian Left's true colors as often, and as widely as possible

Anonymous said...

absolutely well written...very well done..

it is a sad thing indeed that indian media has a cacophony of marxist noises (from ndtv and the likes)..I believe the birth of our own Fox News is closeby..we need a O'Reilly and a Brit Hume....these idiots (barkha/arundhati) currently occupying space in the indian media need to be driven out...

doubtinggaurav said...

Jaffna,

I agree with Anon. India need its version of Fox.
(I am not going to say anything about marxist, I think you know where I stand :-))

Regards

Anonymous said...

Jaffna,

You might want to read a book review I posted on this subject looooooong ago: http://www.sandeepweb.com/2004/12/07/the-only-fatherland/

Better still, buy the book.

Sandeep
www.sandeepweb.com

Anonymous said...

Jaffna:

Excellent post. But why are you restricting yourself to the
historians. Even more insidious are the Marxist economists at Institutes like the JNU, Delhi School of Economics, Bombay University and even IIM-A.
Sebastian Morris, Eroll D'Souza, Amaresh Bagchi, Partha Sen, Romar
Correa among many others immediately come to mind. These Marxist economists still hold on to their failed central planning model of economic development. They provide the "credibility" toi the arguments to "obstruct" India's development. A case in point is their opposition to the sale and privatization of the failed PSU's!

Nanda Kishore said...

Excellent post, Jaffna. Congratulations for having the courage to call it as you see it (as it should be seen IMO).

In addition to the political shenanigans of the communists, we also face more insidious dangers in the form of militant communism across the country today. Whole areas of AP, Orissa, Jharkhand and Lalu-land have been terrorised by Naxalites/Maoists. Though they are now bitter enemies of the Marxists, one cannot forget they were an off-shoot of the opportunistic communist mongrels of West Bengal.

As for institutions being hijacked by agenda-driven communists, nowhere is this more apparent than Bengal. Entire academia and civil institutions like police swarm with communist cadre. One lady, whose sole achievement was to write a hagiography of Jyoti Basu, was appointed VC of Calcutta university, if I remember correctly. Even the ABP group papers refrain (possibly out of fear) from criticising the CPM wholeheartedly.

Anonymous said...

Jaffna,
I'm curious as to your opinion of Mani Shankar Aiyar as the Union Petroleum Minister. It would seem to me that his policy seemed one of national interest ahead of anything else, and I'm curious as to why he would be classified in the category of traitors. For the most part, I'm not sure the names on the list you give are classified as traitors because of their actions or because they're simply left-leaning/hardcore left. This isn't a criticism of the list, simply a lack of knowledge as to what the various individuals named have done that their actions can be classified as treasonous. I really doubt whether you intended for all of them to take collective responsibility for the various incidents you have cited in the post, since they all seem to have disparate backgrounds.

-hitesh.

Jaffna said...

Hitesh,

Each of the persons that I have named have attacked India and its foreign/national policy in both international and national fora. An Indian citizen has a right to criticize his or her Government. But to routinely do so especially in high profile fora is another matter altogether. It is almost as if the anti-India propaganda is on over-drive.

Many mentioned have published books attacking Indian foreign or domestic policy. Almost all have openly identified themselves with the inheritance of Indian Marxism - one that is responsible for much of the unfortunate twists of Indian economic and foreign policy since 1940. This is freedom of speech. But to have a persistent diatribe against one's country - much like Noam Chomsky of the United States - indicates something more serious in ones mind set. Please read Sugato Bose, Sumantra Bose, Sarmila Bose (incidentally all are part of the Subhash Chandra Bose family) to get a sense of what I mention. Or Arundhati Roy, Meera Nanda and Brinda Karat.

Noam Chomsky is a relative exception in the United States. The India baiters by contrast are far more numerous and influential when compared to him.

There are reports that Mani Shankar Aiyer supported China's position on Tibet, Aksai Chin and NEFA as a student in Europe. He appears to have vociferously defended the Chinese invasion of 1962 as a student. To be fair by him, Mr. Aiyer had recently denied these allegations as baseless. But the accusations by his student contemporaries in Europe persist.

Best regards

history_lover said...

As Hitesh said pray tell me how leftist historian Irfan Habib (incidentally of the Aligarh School of History) is a traitor ?
Or for that matter Romila Thapar ?
They are academics pure and simple.
One may have legitimate differences with thier interpretation of history but..
Similarly how is Mani Shankar Iyer (former IFS officer and Minister) a traitor ? I too find his craven loyalty to his Doon school chum Rajiv Gandhi extremely irritating but calling him anti-national ?

cynical nerd said...

Reg. Mani Shankar Aiyer's stint as Oil Minister. Despite his open pro-China policy, he lost out on to the Chinese in Kazhakhastan and Myanmar. Even after losing out to them, he persisted with his pro-China policy. His love was hardly reciprocated.

He agreed to construct the LNG terminal only after much pressure. This is because he put all the eggs on his other pet project the IPI pipeline - which will benefit the Pakistani government $700 million/year in tranist fees - a sum which can buy 10 F-16s and train countless terrorists with explosives and guns.

If one cannot call it anti-national, call it sheer naviete and stupidity.

Jaffna said...

History_Lover,

Given the recent events of my own country, I am uncomfortable with the word "traitor" and never used it in this post. It was Hitesh and you who introduced it in the debate!

Let us focus on the broad picture -not the individuals. The inheritance of Indian Marxism has been detrimental to India's economics, its defence, its unity and its intellectual stature. Indian Marxism replaced independent, rigorous and neutral research with polemic and ideology.

I gave Hitesh several examples on Mani Shankar Aiyer. Let me be more explicit. Mr. Aiyer is reported to have collected funds for families of Chinese soldiers in 1962. Chinese troops had then annexed NEFA and were advancing to Shillong. He was then General Secretary of the Cambridge Cell of the Communist Party.

Dhiren Bhagat wrote about this in a London journal called "Private Eye" on May 16, 1986. He died in a road accident too years later. Mr. Aiyer never sued him for defamation. No less than Mr. Salman Khurshid compiled Bhagat's writings in 1990 (The Contemporary Conservative) that included this very same article published in 1986! Mr. Aiyer never challenged the accuracy of the book either.

He has since denied the reports as defamatory but several Oxbridge alumni persist with the allegations - right or wrong.

He had attacked the Indian army in May 2002 as an opposition legislator. This featured in the post-Godhra debate in the Indian parliament when the Congress and the BJP traded insults at each other across the floor.

Mr. Aiyer attacked Savarkar in 2004. He has the right to his opinion. But as Minister one needs to be responsible when attacking public figures of the past. Savarkar spent 11 years in prison given his role in the independence movement. Mr. Aiyer is reported to have raised funds for the families of Chinese soldiers when China had defacto occupied NEFA and Assam lay vulnerable to the advancing Chinese troops!

Romila Thapar has time and time again attacked the Hindu religious inheritance in her presentation of history. This inheritance, together with others, helped shape and define India. One can not repeatedly attack any of India's major traditions and be considered a neutral and leading historian. She has a sophistication in her style but if one were to read between the lines - her's is a complete repudiation of the Indic tradition. I can deconstruct her big time but that would take another post altogether.

Likewise for Irfan Habib although he is the least offensive of the Marxist historians.

Best regards

BangaloreGuy said...

The Historians omissions and commissions are well-documented by Arun Shourie in 'Eminent Historians' - not just the scamming on 'history' bu also looting the ICHR.

Jaffna said...

Prashant,

Good to hear from you. I am a regular reader of your blog. It is a pleasure to know that you retain the same incisive intellect that you had in New York in the 1990s!

Best regards

Kaunteya said...

Excellent Post Jaffna. Way to go !

Anonymous said...

"Tibet had an area of 471,700 square miles. China was then fighting the United States in the Korean war and Nehru could have easily retained the colonial-era Indian military presence in Lhasa and consolidated it further in order to ensure Tibetan independence"

That is wrong. India had absolutely no capability to resist China in Tibet. Indian army generals at that time said that they could not imagine confronting China (which was then fighting the mighty US army to a standtill) over Tibet. India simply lacked the logistical capacity to intervene in any meaningful way.

And Menon was clearly a terrible defense minister, the worst in Indian history, but he was not a Marxist as far as I know. Incidentally, it is also false to say that Nehru did not know of Aksai Chin, he most definitely did.

Jaffna said...

Anonymous,

Krishna Menon described himself as a Marxist.

And Nehru did not know that the Chinese had constructed a highway linking Xinjiang with Tibet through Aksai Chin in 1957. He would not have been vigorously defending the Chinese cause at the United Nations that year in the face of opposition from the Eisenhower administration. Please remember that Taiwan occupied the Chinese seat the UN Security Council then.

There were several Indian and British military experts who felt that India could have ensured Tibetan independence in 1950. I suggest you read the book by Brigadier J.P. Dalvi - Himalayan Blunder - published by Orient Paperback. Frank Moraes has given an introduction to that book. The Red Army had captured power only in 1949. China and the United States were fighting each other in the Korean peninsula. The presence of the Red Guards was limited in Tibet in 1950 since China had focused on Korea and the Formosa Straits. It also had to deal with renegade Kuomintang forces in Yunnan adjoining Burma.

Best regards

Anonymous said...

Jaffna -- where did Menon say he was a Marxist ?

I have read several books on 1962. The 'Guilty Men of 1962' for one, and there are a few others (although not recently).

I also recollect reading a quote from 2 top Indian generals at that time that India absolutely had no capability to resist Chinese incursion in Tibet. It just wasn't even on the horizon. The Indian army of the 1950s (heck even the Indian army of 1962) possessed no logisitical capability to project power into Tibet.

Regardless of China's other battles, it still possessed a formidable army, with a great deal of skill in guerilla fighting. And its air force, while no match for that of America, was considerably superior to India's air force. There were 80000 Chinese troops in Tibet. For India to send troops to Tibet capable of resising that kind of force over massive logistical handicap was close to being an impossibility. Bad roads, troops without high altitude warfare experience. 10 years after the Chinese invasion of Tibet, India could barely maintain posts in its own border territories and we have people talking about resisting China 10 years prior to that far away !!

Nehru most definitely knew about the road in Aksai Chin. Army Intel communicated this information

Jaffna said...

Anonymous,

Once again, let us look at the big picture, not the details. You seem to be detracting from the main issue i.e. that Indian Marxism has served to undermine the Indian Economy, Indian Unity and Indian Defence! The focus is on the big picture, not on individuals.

My maternal grand father was a member of the India League as a student in England in the 1920s. Another prominent Sri Lankan member of the India League was Jinarajadasa.

Krishna Menon was active in the India League. He was a family friend! Scotland Yard had kept a close watch on him. The Scotland Yard papers makes for interesting reading. His constant meetings with the Soviet officials in London, his Marxist learnings and his ideological statements in favor of Marxism have been recorded. He had close links with left wing trade unionists and was viewed as an international revolutionary who influenced the Trotskyite movement in Sri Lanka. This said, the Labor Party had explored the option to field Krishna Menon as a candidate in England but jettisoned the idea since they perceived him to be a Stalinist! Quite a contradiction indeed.

Suhas Chakravarti has written on Krishna Menon and the India League. There are several other sources.

Nehru mentioned in Parliament that he was unaware of the Chinese intrusion into Aksai Chin. I will take his word for it. This assumes salience in light of his ongoing defence of China in the United Nations. Just read the General Assembly transcripts of the autumn of 1957.

If you allege that Nehru in fact knew about the Chinese incursion, did nothing about it and continued to defend China, then Nehru should be considered to have willfully betrayed India's interests. You make a serious charge indeed!

I differ on your assessment on Tibet. The book I had suggested has a different take. It quotes British colonial military officers and to Indian officers. The Chinese Red Army was inexperienced. The Indian Army had extensive experience both in World War I and World War 2. Nehru undermined India's defences and gave the signal to China to enter Tibet. Moreover, the international community would have supported India's stance to ensure an independent Tibet. You seem to be arguing that the Tibet case in 1950 was a fait accompli. I disagree. It is now a fait accompli but we should strive to gradually reverse the historical blunder on the part of Nehru.

Nehru by the way is on record having praised Stalin in numerous speeches and publications.

Best regards

Jaffna said...

Here are statistics on the British Indian army that might be useful to the debate when India in 1950 had the capacity to forestall the Chinese invasion of Tibet. I only refer to one regiment - i.e. the Sikh regiment. I covered this in a different post in October, 2005.

Sikhs constituted 20% of the British Indian army in World War although they were just 1% of pre-partition India's population. 138,000 Sikh soldiers fought in Belgium and France in World War 1. More than 25% of these soldiers either died or were wounded in battle. In the first battle of Ypres at Flanders in 1914, an entire platoon of Sikh soldiers died fighting to the last man. At the battle of Neuve Chapele in 1915, 80% of soldiers in the Sikh regiments perished. In World War II, Sikh recruits helped to swell the Indian army from 189,000 in 1939 to over 2.5 million in 1945. The 11th Sikh regiment played a key role in allied efforts to roll back the Japanese blitzkreig over South East Asia. 83,000 Sikh soldiers died in the two world wars while another 109,000 were wounded serving in the British army.

Sameer said...

Marxists have always been anti-India and anti-Hindu.
Infact they have been kicked out whereever they have been. Right from Afghanistan to Eastern Europe, or even Iran where they have been exiled, why even our Pakistan and Bangladesh, where they are driven to India.
India is the only country where Marxists have participated in a democracy and have turned WestBengal and Kreala into tragedies.
They have been anti-India from days before Independence. They called the first war of Independence as Mutiny, they opposed Independence calling it 'jhooti azaadi'. They supported British, supported Partition and after partition supported Pakistan and China, even when China attacked India. They supported all idiotic policies and also pro-China suicidal policies. Because of them our history teaching is distorted and also our media is fully controlled by them esp. the english language media and the idiotic bollywood.
We have their fourth columnsts in the form of dubious NGOs, which often shout for the wrong reasons. They often support terrorists and naxals and internationally are in friendly ties with jehadis. (Pakistan and China, Saudi etc.)
We need to kick them out soon or marginalise them to a point where nobody takes them seriously (like how nobody takes seriously a madman on the road)
They are a blot on the Indian culture of Hinduism and Indian pluralism.

Anonymous said...

Jaffna

The big picture is made up of lots of small items. Exaggerating or distorting some makes your case much weaker. You seem to be too willing to classify anyone as a Marxist based on some dabblings or an occasional statement. Not that I have any liking for Marxists or Menon, but you are as guilty of distoring history as Marxist historians when you do that.

Finally, it is bizarrely false to say that the Red Army was inexperienced. The Red Army had been fighting with Chiang Kai Shek (and the Japanese) for 15 years. They were extremely experienced, and had beaten an American backed Chiang Kai Shek.

And while the courage of Indian army soldiers is undisputable, victory in warfare is not a matter of courage (otherwise native Americans would still occupy the Western US), but a matter of training, leadership, logistics and military science. And if Chinese troops were tied down elsewhere, so were the bulk of the Indian troops tied down facing Pakistan.

I will try and find Brigadier Dalvi's book. Dalvi is one of the few Indian military senior officers who performed well in 1962, and so deserves a hearing. But the notion that India (with little experience in high altitude warfare) could have resisted the Chinese 80K man force strikes me as a fever dream. The same Chinese army was able to tie down the mighty US in Korea.

Now, still continuing to support China after Tibet was idiocy, and Nehru is guilty of that.

It is important to put some of these actions in perspective though. For Nehru (and indeed for many other British educated Indians), the fight was all about colonialism. That was part of the reason why they gravitated towards socialism -- because British socialists were the only people willing to support Indian independence. Churchill had no interest in Indian independence and was willing to let millions of Indians starve in the great Bengal famine. And of course, at that point, it was not obvious that socialism was the economic basket case that it later turned out to be.

Nehru's support for China had everything to do with the idea of supporting a fellow Asian country against former colonial powers. THis was of course, a mistake, since Mao and Chao En Lai made no distinction between former colonial powers and not -- they were intent of establishing China as a world power and satisfying their somewhat (but not totally) paranoid fears of invasion.


-- Raj

Jaffna said...

Sameer, I agree with much of what you say although I would word it differently :-)

Raj, I am glad you identified yourself. I think there is an increasing convergence between you and me. I agree with you that the independence movement had no need to inherit the anti-Marxist views of the colonial authorities. Hence the initial support for China. I agree with you that China did not reciprocate this good will. I agree that supporting China after Tibet was a blunder.

But I disagree with the rest. Let us agree to disagree.

The Indian army performed brilliantly in World War 1 and World War 2. Check out my post in the October archives on British India's war dead. The Brits could not have won either war without the Indian soldiers be it in Flanders, Gallipoli, North Africa, Mesopotamia and Burma. The Indian army had strategy, had vision and had leadership. Nehru emasculated it. You ignore the evidence and underplay Indian capacity!

You speak of the Indian army being stretched because of Pakistan. I disagree. India was poised to recapture Gilgit, Baltistan and Hunza in 1949 when Pakistan sued for a cease-fire. The idiot Nehru not only agreed to that but then unnecessarily internationalized the Kashmir issue by refering the matter to the United Nations and then promising a plebiscite! This blog covered this in an earlier post. The Indian army had no need to defend its borders against Pakistan in 1950. You have exaggerated the impact of the Red Army.

The Red Army won the war in China because the Japanese had devastated the Kuomintang. Just as Pol Pot took over Cambodia in the 1970s because the Vietcong had pushed back the Americans and the American backed regimes in Indo-China. China had broken up into numerous war lord principalities. Just as the Taleban took over a shattered and fragmented Afghanistan with Pakistan's help in 1996, the Red Army consolidated China with Stalin's help in 1949.

The Red Army is now formidable. It has been that since the mid 1950s. But not before.

The United States rolled back the Chinese sponsored invasion of what it today South Korea. You are correct that the United States was unable to go further and take over North Korea. Quite right. But to assume that China had the capability to fight a two front war in 1950 is another matter especially since it had been tied down in Korea.

I am not arguing that India should have fought China in 1950. You miss my point. I meant that Nehru should have remained in Tibet in 1949 and pre-empted the Chinese take over in 1950. He should not have pulled out. The West would have supported him.

I provided you facts on Mani Shanker Aiyer and Krishna Menon. You have not been able to deny that. Besides that, I personally know that Krishna Menon was a Marxist - he was a close associate of my own maternal grand father who had been a Trotskite himself before turning a Theosophist - quite a change in his life - but I suppose change is the essence of life.

I repeat that the Indian Marxists have compromised Indian unity, Indian economic growth and Indian defence preparedness.

Anyway, let us agree to disagree.

Best regards

Pankaj said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

"I provided you facts on Mani Shanker Aiyer and Krishna Menon. You have not been able to deny that. Besides that, I personally know that Krishna Menon was a Marxist - he was a close associate of my own maternal grand father who had been a Trotskite himself before turning a Theosophist - quite a change in his life - but I suppose change is the essence of life."

I don't care about Mani Shanker Aiyer. I never even mentioned him. As far as Menon goes, you can only say that you know that Menon was a Marxist personally if you met him personally and he told you that. Mere flrtations during college should not count.

You are also wrong when you say that the Japanese had devastated the Kuomintang. Both the Kuomiatang and the COmmunists fought the Japanese and in fact Chiang Kai Shek received massive aid from America [ The Red Army did receieve some aid from Russia, but nowhere near as much as Chiang Kai Shek did from America].

The Chinese Army was capable of fighting the mighty American army to a bloody standstill in Korea just 1-2 years later. I still don't know where you get the idea that the India of 1950 could have stood up to such a formidable force in a logistically remote land, Western support or no. China did not suddenly generate the ability to throw back the UN forces in late 1950, they had been training and planning for quite a while.

Now you say that you are talking of resisting in 1949, not 1950. Well, in that case, the Korean war had not yet started so China would have been able to deploy a larger force here. Even if India had a military mission in Tibet, the idea that it could repel China in 1949 is just fantasy.

No, we DON'T see eye to eye. You seem to have a tendency to play armchair general 50 years after the fact and use perfect hindsight (and imperfect history to proclaim what should have been done)

Raj

doubtinggaurav said...

Raj,

Jaffna is saying that if there was a Indian presence then China would not have invaded Tibet.

Further you may be willing to excuse "flirtation" with Marxism, others are not.

Again Nehru ignored Indian interest for Third world solidarity.

I would say that considering the hegemonic nature of Marxism, Indian should have been alert, whether or not there was military intelligence for that.

Regards

Jaffna said...

Raj

I think you need to read Chinese history!

One anonymous individual had questioned me on Mani Shankar Aiyer. I had assumed it was you. Hence my statement.

If you read the comments section - I did provide you evidence on Krishna Menon besides the personal. I referred to the Scotland yard papers, documents on the India League and Suhas Chakravarti's book. There are many other sources as well. I am surprised that you are unaware of the general perception that he was a Marxist.

Furthermore, you need to check your facts on Chinese history in the 1940s! It was fragmented into several war lord principalities. Had the Kuomintang been the formidable force that you claim it to be, how come it could not able to exercise its writ through out the length and breadth of China proper i.e. the 18 provinces (excluding Tibet and East Turkestan). The Kuomintang was weak. China had run away inflation. The war lords were despotic and corrupt. The Kuomintang regime was waiting to collapse like a house of cards.

Returning to events in China in 1949 - The Red Army had just taken over Beijing that year. It had just began to consolidate itself. It had not even entered Tibet! So please do not argue that China would have been able to deploy a larger force. It had just begun!!

Had India maintained the colonial era presence that year and bolstered it - perhaps with outside help - the Red Army might have thought twice.

It is your history that is imprecise.

I will continue to argue that Indian Marxism had compromised Indian defence, Indian economic growth and the territorial integrity of India. You seem to be intentionally diverting that main thrust of my thesis by raising trivia.

Best regards

Anonymous said...

Raj: I think that you are insulting the Indian Army which had several achievements in the two World Wars - as Jaffna had described. Please do not insult us further with your pro-Chinese propaganda!!!

Sukhinder said...

Jaffna

Excellent post despite the vigorous defence of China by one commentator. Keep it up.

Jaffna said...

Colleagues

Friends had urged that I shift the Post on "The Marxist Betrayal" above the ones on Iran and Japan given the continuing debate. I have therefore moved it. The contents remained unchanged.

Best regards

Anonymous said...

Jaffna

Good work and very stimulating. The post is both informative and provocative. I would have been very excited if the chronological history and facts of the Marxist Betrayal is placed in the right socio political perspective. What we have to further probe is why is the Marxist ideology still capture the imagination of the 'so called pseudo illectuals' and why the ism is still surviving in India. Besides, its idelogical backwarndess in the context of changing India which often retard the economic prosperity of the country, its contribution on agricultural reforms in India, particuarly in Kerala and West Bengal could not be ignored. It is also important to recognize that in the changing modern world fueled by capitalism and urban ecology, a sensible balance which focus on the welfare of the marginialized people is essential for a balanced growth. May be invertantly the Maxists have done a good jobn to balance economic growth with distribution. The main challenge is that these fellows donot know where and when to draw the line due to their ideological backwardness or may I say obstinacy.

Good work Jaffna, continue to provoke the minds.........

Regards
Budhi

Jaffna said...

Budhi

Thank you for the insights. You make a good point i.e. that the Marxists had addressed structural contradictions in the agricultural sector that enabled them to retain a constituency in places like Bengal and Kerala. I agree.

South Korea and Taiwan also introduced land reform in the aftermath of the Communist threat and this in part explained their social stability after the 1950s.

Best regards

Afzal said...

Raj: You shamefully defend China and are so dogmatic. Why???? I heard that the Kuomintang or what ever was bloody corrupt. All the American aid apparently was pocketed. China fell like a rotten apple to Mao. I agree with Jaffna - Nehru's position on Tibet was bloody stupid.Admit it!!!

Pankaj said...

Hello Jaffna,

Your post and the comments has been very informative and provides very important references for one to follow up. Thanks and best regards.

Note: I thought my earlier comment was a little off the point.

Jaffna said...

Hi Pankaj

Thank you. I think your earlier point is valid and remains relevant :-)

Best regards

injunjoe said...

The Commies may be stuck in the past,but they're certainly not antinational, they're parroting a viewpoint you dont agree with. In Kerala they did have a hand in a couple of good things like land reforms etc. And being a Christian in India, with the chauvinistic BJP around, I'll pick the Left any day

Anonymous said...

injunjoe: what's christianity to do with this. you obviously place religion above country. didn't the commies try to nationalize christian schools in kerala??/

injunjoe said...

Anonymous:

Yes the Commies did try to nationalize christian schools in kerala, they had their rationale for it, my point is being a Christian in India I would never vote for the Sangh parivar brigade, who are openly anti minority. The Commies only care about their outdated ideology, not religion

And I never placed my religion over my country ,ever, I am an Indian, I am a Christian, these are two identites, both are seperate and I am proud of both

Jaffna said...

Injunjoe

This post had nothing to do with Christianity or the BJP. It confined itself to the Marxists. You mention that they have an outdated ideology. Is that not reason enough to jettison them?

Their land reform has been a success but non-Marxist governments such as South Korea, Japan and Taiwan had also introduced successful land reform.

So perhaps there is a third way - one that religious minorities can identify with instead of relying on Marxists alone to make their case.

Best regards

injunjoe said...

Jaffna:

I apologize if I deviated from the post topic, you're right, a centrist party which isnt tied down by loyalties to any particular idelogy or community is the best choice. Ideally this could have been the Congress party, but sadly that one is a lost cause. But if land reforms were successfull in other countries , done by non commie gvts; why hasn't it happening in most parts of India, why was it left to the reds to get it done in Bengal and Kerala. So maybe they're still relevant in modern day India.

doubtinggaurav said...

Injunjoe,

You however have no problem flirting with an openly anti majority ideology.

Jaffna said...

Injunjoe,

Thank you for the comments. This post and the discussion it triggered got me thinking a lot. I think we need a tolerant open minded society - one characterized by respect for different points of view.

I agree with you that the left has had its contribution. So perhaps, I should have toned down the language. This said, I also feel that they have compromised India's security, territorial integrity and economy. If only they were less ideological and open to a different view, it would make all the difference. They are so dogmatic. But that might inadvertently go for people like me as well.

As for the Christian issue that you raised, it disturbed me. I hope for the day when different religions can co-exist in genuine respect. I am a devoted Hindu - a part of my family is Protestant - which reflects the colonial history of our land where families remained united though certain segments adopted the colonial faith - for what ever reason. So let all of us, you and I included, in our own lives try to understand and respect diversity of views both in ideology and religion.

I hope I do not sound preachy. This is as much a self-reflection intended for me as it is a comment.

Have a good weekend.

Anonymous said...

I am reading Shourie's "Only Fatherland". The book is scary. The communist scum did not merely side with the British during Quit India (because then USSR was in alliance with Britain against Germany) but they also actively sabotaged the freedom struggle and reported on Congress party's activites to the colonial government. The book is full of documentary evidence from National Archives. Communist scum like PC Joshi sent glowing accounts to the colonial government of the "good" work they were doing in destroying the freedom struggle. In fact, they called the freedom-fighters "fifth-column" and those supporting the British government as "patriots"!

Make no mistake. Communists will sell their mother for a few pennies if it means advancing their "cause". It is the nature of communism (which according to Black Book, killed 80 million people) to dehumanize its practitioners and make them unethical beasts.

Jaffna said...

Anonymous,

Thank you for the lead. I will try to buy the book that you mention.

In reflection, what makes me so uncomfortable with the Indian Marxists is the self-righteousness and dogmatic ideology.

The relevance of the ideological center is that it avoids these pitfalls.

Best regards

Anonymous said...

Somebody here says Irfan Habib, Romila Thapar etc are just "academics". Yeah, right. academics following an ideology that murdered millions of people. If Hitler managed win the war, I'm sure there would be Nazi "academics" too. Read this excellent artilce by French historian Alain Besancon:

http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a3a97d71b77ca.htm

injunjoe said...

Thanks Jaffna, I totally agree with what you said, an open minded society is the need of the hour. Today in India there is feeling of distrust between people of different religions and communities. And sadly these divisive thoughts have increased over the years. Riots and caste killings today go hand in hand with the arrival of multinationals lured by our nation's ecomomic potential. But I'm confident that India will get through this mess , our country has seen it all. Thanks and keep up the great posts.

doubtinggaurav-80% of those who vote for the reds in kerala and bengal are from the majority community, are these members of the majority community also against their own ilk?

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