January 27, 2007

COMPETING PERCEPTIONS OF THE U.S. AND CHINESE SPACE PROGRAMS

By Kevin Pollpeter

In October 2006, both the United States and the People’s Republic of China released documents that dictated their policies toward the international use of space. Issued just a week apart, the “U.S. National Space Policy” (NSP) and the “China’s Space Activities in 2006” dealt with the respective countries’ space programs, though they generated vastly different international reactions. The U.S. government was widely criticized for advocating a policy perceived as intending to develop space weapons and for language eschewing arms control in space. Beijing’s document, on the other hand, received little media attention outside of China, as it limited its discussion to solely civil space programs, gingerly avoiding any mention of its dual-use military applications. The tones of the two documents provide an interesting glimpse at the different approaches to space diplomacy, with the United States emphasizing national security and asserting U.S. rights in space and China stressing the benevolence of its space program and its openness to international cooperation.

The differences in the documents are accounted for by their divergent purposes and authorships. The NSP was issued by the White House and consists of 13 sections dealing with national security and commercial, civil and international cooperation as well as U.S. policy goals and principles. It is a working document intended to govern the conduct of U.S. space activities by explaining in detail the roles of various agencies in promoting U.S. space efforts, most important of these being the Department of Defense. “China’s Space Activities in 2006” was issued by the Information Office of the State Council, and unlike its U.S. counterpart, the white paper is a much more retrospective document, concerned with China’s space activities during the period of the 10th Five-Year Plan (2001-2005). It consists of five sections dealing with aims and principles, progress made in the past five years, goals for the next five years, policies and international exchanges and cooperation.

Given that the document was drafted under the guidance of the China National Space Administration (CNSA)—a civilian agency primarily responsible for signing international agreements and exchanges and for managing national space technology and industry—it is unsurprising that the white paper has a civil space emphasis with a significant section on international cooperation, one of its main responsibilities. “Defense” and “security” are mentioned only three times throughout the entire paper, and there is no mention of its partnership with the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), which is responsible for the operation of China’s launch sites and its spacecraft. The development and operation of China’s human spaceflight program, for instance, is run by the PLA. Consequently, the document serves as a venue to tout China’s accomplishments in space not only for domestic political and bureaucratic reasons, but also to advertise China’s viability as an international partner in space.

China’s Space Activities during the 10th Five-Year Plan

It is apparent that the period of the 10th Five-Year Plan was a watershed for China’s endeavors in space, and that China has laid a foundation to become a major space power. During this time, China conducted more launches than at any other time in its history. In 2002, China had nine satellites in orbit [1]. By 2005, this number had increased to 19 [2]. Additionally, China made steady progress in nearly all aspects of space technology. From 2001-2005, China launched 22 satellites and five spacecraft, involving 29 launches, all of them successful. From October 1996 to December 2005, the Long March series of rockets made 46 consecutive successful flights and achieved a 92% lifetime success rate, a reliability record approaching international standards [3]. According to the white paper, China now has six types of satellites: recoverable remote sensing satellites, Dongfanghong (DFH) communication satellites, Fengyun (FY) meteorological satellites, Shijian (SJ) scientific research and technological experiment satellites, Ziyuan (ZY) Earth resources satellites and Beidou navigation and positioning satellites. The most public achievements since 2001 were the launches of two human spaceflight missions: Shenzhou V and Shenzhou VI. The Shenzhou V was launched on October 15, 2003 and conducted a 21-hour mission with one astronaut. The Shenzhou VI flight involved a five-day, two-man mission. Subsequent flights will involve space walks and rendezvous and docking exercises to prepare for an eventual space station.

The Chinese space program has also initiated two development projects. The first is a next generation launch vehicle that will replace the current Long March series of rockets. This rocket, scheduled for launch in 2012, will use 120-ton and 50-ton engines fueled by non-polluting and non-toxic propellants. In addition, the rocket will use strap-on modules to suit a variety of orbits and payloads. The second development project is a lunar exploration program formerly approved in January 2003. The first of three missions will be launched in early 2007 and involve a lunar orbiter that will take 3-D images of the moon. Subsequent missions will involve sending a robotic vehicle to explore the lunar surface and return with lunar soil samples (Xinhua, May 17, 2006). While individual members of the Chinese space industry remain hopeful for human spaceflight to the moon, CNSA officials have ruled out such a possibility until the government can evaluate the success of the robotic missions after their conclusion in 2020 (People’s Daily, March 14, 2004).

China is set to build upon this significant foundation during the 11th Five-year Plan. On top of developing a new launch vehicle and conducting a lunar program, China will expand the number and sophistication of all of its Earth observation satellites, including meteorological, oceanic and Earth resources satellites. To bolster its observation and reconnaissance capabilities, it will deploy an eight-satellite remote sensing constellation consisting of four optical sensor satellites and four synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellites (People’s Daily, August 22, 2006). China also plans to develop multiple communication satellites that will have increased service life and reliability. China will also seek to improve its Beidou navigation system by launching additional advanced satellites and developing application technologies, such as those for the rail and ocean shipping industries. The present system is able to achieve only 20-meter accuracies, but China plans to eventually deploy a system with GPS-like accuracies.

At the forefront of China’s efforts to portray itself as a responsible stakeholder in space is its section on space cooperation entitled, “International Exchanges and Cooperation.” Whereas the United States devotes just 140 words to the topic in its NSP, China devotes 1,606. The section gives multiple examples of international cooperation in the past five years and states that China has signed agreements “on the peaceful uses of outer space” with Argentina, Brazil, Canada, France, Malaysia, Pakistan, Russia, Ukraine and Europe. Additionally, the section notes that China, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Iran, Mongolia, Pakistan, Peru, Thailand and Turkey have signed a convention to establish the Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO) that will be headquartered in Beijing. China has also participated in the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee and has become a member of the ad hoc inter-governmental Group of Earth Observations. In the next five years, China plans to place a priority on scientific research, remote sensing data sharing and services, sharing of Tracking, Telemetry and Control (TT&C) resources, as well as cooperation on the design and manufacturing of satellites and ground facilities.

Differences in Tone, Similarities in Practice

Both documents outline related objectives—the exploration and development of outer space for social progress, scientific and economic development and national security—though the discrepancies in language have contributed to the international community’s perceptions of the two space programs. Although the White House has sought to portray the NSP as simply a continuation of past administrations’ policies on space, the U.S. document has been criticized for its heavy-handed treatment of security issues. For instance, Vitaliy Davydov, deputy head of the Russian Federal Space Agency, called the U.S. document “the first step towards a serious escalation of the military confrontation in space" (Interfax, December 1, 2006). Of particular controversy in the NSP are two principles related to the right of defense and the U.S. stance on arms control in space. The document states that the United States “will preserve its rights, capabilities, and freedom of action in space…and deny, if necessary, adversaries the use of space capabilities hostile to U.S. national interests.” Moreover, the document states that the United States “will oppose the development of new legal regimes or other restrictions that seek to prohibit or limit U.S. access to space.” Critics of U.S. policy have interpreted these statements to mean that the United States is intent on the unrestricted development of space weapons.

The Chinese white paper, on the other hand, has avoided any discussion of developing military space capabilities and has sought to portray its space program in a manner that serves to assuage concerns about its possible, more assertive rise. China is “unflinching in taking the road of peaceful development,” the white paper states, “And always maintains that outer space is the common wealth of mankind. While supporting activities that utilize outer space for peaceful purposes, China actively explores and uses outer space and continuously makes new contributions to the development of man’s space programs.” Yet, the inherent dual-use nature of space technology indicates that even as China touts its growing civil space capabilities, it is in fact developing an increasingly sophisticated military space capability that would be used in a potential conflict with the United States. The three-meter resolution of the Ziyuan satellites, for example, enables China to image aircraft, distinguish between warships and commercial ships and locate clusters of vehicles [5]. Such a space-based capability would allow the PLA to pinpoint the location of U.S. carrier battle groups and launch ballistic and cruise missiles against the ships [6]. According to the U.S. Defense Department, China is also developing anti-satellite weapons. While the report acknowledges that currently, China can only disable or destroy satellites in orbit using nuclear weapons, it assesses that China is developing a ground-based laser that can damage or blind satellites [7]. Moreover, PLA authors are explicit about the primacy of space in future battles and the need to develop space weapons [8].

With its NSP, the United States has increased the visibility of its national security concerns to its detriment and is perceived by the international community as intent on developing space weapons. China, on the other hand, has managed to accentuate its civil and commercial aspects to a degree that military applications receive little fanfare. By diverting attention away from the military uses of its space program, China has managed to portray itself as a champion of the peaceful uses of outer space that is willing to work within the international system for the benefit of all mankind. China’s downplaying of its use of the national security aspects of its space program conforms to Beijing’s grand strategy to achieve great power status within a system dominated by the United States and to increase its international influence without triggering a counterbalancing reaction. China’s space diplomacy thus facilitates its rise as a military power, while enhancing its reputation abroad.

Notes

1. Guo Duoxian, “China Is Successfully Operating 9 Satellites In Orbit (Zhongguo yi you 9 ke yingyong weixing zai taikongzhong chenggong yunxing) China Space News (Zhongguo hangtian bao) [online], September 3, 2002.
2. “2004: China Space ‘8 Rockets 10 Satellites’ (2004:Zhongguo hangtian ‘ba jian shi xing’ zaichuang huihuang),” Aerospace China (Zhongguo hangtian) [online], January 2005.
3. Reliability data is based on compilation of launch data acquired from the China Great Wall Industry Corporation website (http://www.cgwic.com/launch/history.htm) and individual news reports on launches in 2005.
4. “Jiangsu Province Party Committee Secretary Listens to a Report of the Successes of the Nanjing Geography and Lakes Institute (Jiangsusheng weishuji tingqu nanjing dili yu hupsuo chengguo huibao (tu)),” Chinese Academy of Science website, accessed at http://www.cas.ac.cn/html/Dir/2003/06/09/4945.htm on October 16, 2005.
5. Office of the Secretary of Defense, Military Power of the People’s Republic of China 2006, May 23, 2006, p. 4.
6. Ibid., p. 35.
8. See Kevin Pollpeter, “The Chinese Vision of Space Military Operations,” in James Mulvenon and David Finkelstein, eds., China’s Revolution in Doctrinal Affairs: Emerging Trends in the Operational Art of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army available at http://www.defensegroupinc.com/cira/pdf/doctrinebook_ch9.pdf.

January 25, 2007

Manmohan, a reveller in minorityism


January 28, 2007 (Organiser)

Mother Teresa shocked the conscience of all genuinely secular-minded persons when she wrote directly to Judge Lance Ito of Los Angeles Court on behalf of a known fraud and embezzler Charles Keating who was facing prosecution because he stole $252 million from 17,000 pensioners, retail stock holders and insurance premiums by selling them bogus bonds of his company. He had donated $5 million (Rs. 25 crore) to Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata, headed by Mother Teresa, and that was enough for her to write to Judge Ito directly asking him not to convict Keating!

When Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, made the ridiculous statement that 'Muslims have the first charge on our resources', he was revealing that he had contracted the 'M' virus. M virus, alternatively called minorityism, unbalances the brain and rationality of Indian political leaders and the elite in media and academia, and makes them lopsidedly favour minorities even if not required on the principles of equity.

Of course being compassionate to deprived minorities and their concerns is a noble human rights value. But being fixated on Muslims and Christians, treating them as the only minorities of concern, even if these religious communities are majorities in pockets e.g., in Kashmir and Northeast India, is lopsided.

In such a lopsided minorityism, Hindus as and when in minority do not have the same rights, even as a 'last charge', as the events in Kashmir and Northeast have proved. The facts that Hindus in these areas are being butchered, raped, driven out, forcibly converted do not concern Dr. Manmohan Singh.

Muslims and Christians as minorities, are not entitled to 'first charge' because sequentially Muslims and Christians have been ruling classes for one 1000 years while the Hindus were brutalized. Only SCs and STs are entitled to first charge, and that too for one generation.

Political parties that have been swearing by secularism all these years, however because of minorityism, have failed to persuade the masses that what they advocate is good for country. The nation is in search of something which is more relevant and consistent with our ancient ethos, since secularism as defined and propagated today in India has been reduced to minorityism or minority appeasement. In this dispensation, only Hindus have to appease Muslims and Christians even when they are in majority in pockets of India. Anywhere else in the world, Muslims and Christians do not have to return the favour of appeasement.

The question today is not whether secularism is flawed but whether we should conceptually redefine secularism to make it acceptable to the masses in the country. The answer is surely 'yes'. Such a re-defined concept must be however harmonized with concept of an Indian identity.

Such an identity conceptually requires that India be regarded as Hindustan, i.e., a nation of Hindus and those other who proudly accept Hindus as their ancestors. In this context, Indianness means 'Hindutva'. Thus, Indian identity rests on two pillars: India as Hindustan and Indianness as Hindutva.

In India, Jawaharlal Nehru and his followers had given the concept of secularism an anti-Hindu content. For example, personal and inheritance laws would be legislated for Hindus and subject to judicial review, but not for Muslims and Christians. Thus Manmohan Singh's M virus has its roots in Nehruism. Even in public functions, cultural symbolism such as lighting a lamp to inaugurate a conference or breaking a coconut to launch a project was regarded as against secularism. A conceptual void thus will remain until we not only reject minorityism but also develop a concept of secularism that is in harmony with the national imperative of Hindutva and the nation as Hindustan.

To fill this void, we need to develop therefore a concept of secularism by which an Indian citizen could comprehend how he or she should bond "secularly" with another citizen of a different religion, language or region and feel as a fellow countrymen. The Indian instinctively cannot accept the idea that India is what the British had put together, and that the country was just a body administratively incorporated after a series of invasions that did good in arts, crafts, modern education and communication, to the geographical mass of what is known as India today. We cannot accept this rubbish dished out from the JNU.

Instead, Bharat Mata has a soul which Shri Deendayal Upadhyaya had called chiti which soul was not recognised in Nehru's ignorant view. The ridiculous idea that India is a nation fostered by British rule, propagated even today by JNU historians, therefore finds just no takers amongst the Indian people.

Only by using religious symbols can this void be filled. India being 83 per cent Hindu, the rest being of Hindu descent, and that the folklore in this religion is pan-Indian, therefore it is easy for the masses of all Hindustanis to understand religious bonding. Ramayana narration traverses from the Punjab to Sri Lanka. Mahabharata covers incidents from Assam to Gujarat. Adi Shankara connected Kerala to Kashmir. This need not alienate Muslims and Christians if they proudly accept that their ancestors were Hindus. The problem arises only if the Muslims and Christians identify themselves with foreign invaders.

Minorityism has undesirable effect on national integrity. For example, minorityism enables Muslim men to resist family planning by making their women vulnerable to sudden divorce, and hence in fear not have a voice in how many children they will bear. Muslim men know that uniform civil code will never come under a regime committed to minorityism.

Christian missionaries have now under minorityism got a free hand to conduct money-induced religious conversion. They are not bothered from where that money comes and what ethical and moral norms they have to violate for it.

For example, Mother Teresa shocked the conscience of all genuinely secular-minded persons when she wrote directly to Judge Lance Ito of Los Angeles Court on behalf of a known fraud and embezzler Charles Keating who was facing prosecution because he stole $252 million from 17,000 pensioners, retail stock holders and insurance premiums by selling them bogus bonds of his company. He had donated $5 million ( Rs.25 crore) to Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata, headed by Mother Teresa, and that was enough for her to write to Judge Ito directly asking him not to convict Keating! Her words to Judge Ito were even more astounding: "Please look into your heart as you sentence Charles Keating and do what Jesus would do."

Judge Ito ignored her plea, and convicted Keating to spend years in jail, and also imposed a huge fine. He however asked the Public Prosecutor (Deputy District Attorney in US) Paul W. Turley to reply to Mother Teresa. Turley turned Mother Teresa's plea on her by posing a question: "You asked Judge Ito to do what Jesus would do. I submit the same challenge to you: Ask yourself what Jesus would do if he were given the fruits of a crime; what Jesus would do if he were in possession of money that had been stolen; what Jesus would do if he were being exploited by a thief to ease his conscience?" Then came Turley's punchline: "I submit that Jesus would promptly and unhesitatingly return the stolen property to its rightful owners. You should do the same."

Then Turley implored Mother Teresa: "You have been given money by Mr. Keating that he has been convicted of stealing by fraud. Do not keep the money. Return it to those who worked for it and earned it! If you contact me I will put you in direct contact with the rightful owners of the property now in your possession." (Extracted from Hitchens Christopher: The Missionary Position: Mother Teresa in Theory and Practice.

Of course, Mother Teresa felt no such moral compulsion, ignored Turley and kept Keating's tainted gift of $5 million of stolen money.

Hence, we Hindus must learn today that in the name of secularism and vasudhaiva kutumbakkam we do not fall prey to pious looking foreign women dressed in saris and talking about a 'universal God', or pretending to be grieving widows. Remember, when Ravana came to abduct Sita, he came dressed as a pious sannyasi, and not as his true self.

Likewise, minorityism is a recipe for national disintegration and disaster. Capitulationist Hindus are paving the way for this to happen. The only antidote is a virat Hindutva. The present UPA is hell-bent on protecting the interests only of the Muslims and Christians by lopsided minorityism. For them to convert is to be permitted, but if anyone tries of his volition converts out of Christianity or Islam, then the state moves in to stop it. For example, in 2005 a group of Mizos were discovered by Jewish scholars as a lost tribe of Israel. The Mizos also confirmed that their practices were still Jewish but formally they had been converted forcibly to Christianity by British colonialists. They desired to return to the Jewish faith. Therefore in November 2005 Israel decided to dispatch some Rabbis to Aizwal to conduct the necessary re-conversion ceremonies. But Dr. Manmohan Singh himself intervened on the direction of Ms. Sonia Gandhi to ask the MEA to cancel the Rabbis' visa and inform Israel that "Government of India does not approve of such conversion activities."

Hindus have been traditionally very liberal and secular. The tiniest minority, the Parsis turned down the offer of reservations by the British colonialists saying that they are "comfortable with Hindus." In fact, the fleeing Zoroastrians from Muslim rampage in Persia went in all directions. Only in India they survived as a community.

We cannot allow therefore the M virus to destroy the Hindu foundation of India. Hence, Hindus must develop a virile modern mindset. We have to recognise that Islam has a Jekyll and Hyde theology—one behaviour when in majority [Hyde] and another while in minority [Jekyll]. Christianity especially Catholicism of Opus Dei, and Evangelism in US are predator theology—which means convert unless we show them out virat ekta. Thus the only antidote is Hindutva.

(The writer is President, Janata Party and a former Union Law Minister.)



January 23, 2007

Republic of the dynasty

Is it time for regime change in India, for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to walk into the sunset? Uncle Sam, ever anxious to rearrange the world with friendly dictators and pliable democrats, seems to have woken up to the grand potential of Mr Rahul Gandhi, whose scintillating 30-month-old stint as Amethi MP has set the Potomac on fire.

In the best traditions of American journalism, a leading newsweekly has run an effervescent cover story on the Indian "crown prince" (their phrase, not mine). This certainly suggests Congress 'queen' Sonia Gandhi is planning a major political manoeuvre. It is hardly coincidental that the party suddenly withdrew support to the Mulayam Singh Yadav regime in Uttar Pradesh, setting the ball rolling for the Assembly election, which is bound to impact the Centre.

Sadly for the friendly Americans, the eulogistic write-up which exhorts Indians to look up to Mr Rahul Gandhi on account of his lineage rather than his ability to lead, has upset the family retainers. Much like the since-denied Tehelka interview of September 24, 2005, the Newsweek story has been deemed embarrassing to the family and party because it refers to Mr Gandhi's qualifications with unflattering matter-of-factness. It speaks volumes for the clout enjoyed by the Gandhi-Maino clan in Washington DC that Newsweek could be made to eat crow.

In a prompt and unprecedented retraction, Newsweek apologised for "several inaccuracies" in the story, mainly the claim that Mr Rahul Gandhi failed to earn a degree and did not stick to his job with the Monitor Group for long. The magazine now asserts that Mr Gandhi has an MPhil degree in Development Economics and had worked with the Monitor Group for three years. Crawling when asked to bend, the magazine said it erred in stating that after a year of college in Delhi, Mr Gandhi took economic courses at Cambridge and Harvard, but failed to earn a degree. It said his father, former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, was assassinated while he was at Harvard in 1991, and that "serious, immediate and life-threatening security concerns" compelled him to transfer to Rollins College, Florida, from where he graduated in 1994. He went on to receive an MPhil from Trinity College, Cambridge University, after which he joined the Monitor Group, a leading, global-strategy consulting group in London.

Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi feels "deeply satisfied" with the apology, though personally I feel it raises more issues than it answers about the so-called "crown prince", because America's hugely irreverent media does not normally defer so abjectly to even the tallest giants of the First World. Obviously, larger forces are at work to build a mythology around India's most unremarkable political phenomenon.

It is, therefore, necessary to look closely at the leader Uncle Sam has so lovingly anointed for us lesser mortals. The irrepressible Mr Subramanian Swamy, who not long ago forced Ms Sonia Gandhi to admit that she had not been to Cambridge University but only to Cambridge town, scoffs the belated claim that Mr Rahul Gandhi dropped out of Harvard undergraduate studies due to "security reasons" after Rajiv Gandhi's assassination. Mr Swamy says that hitherto Mr Gandhi had inspired the Indian media to write that he had a Harvard undergraduate degree. It now transpires that he "graduated" from "some Rock and Rollins College" in Florida. Mr Swamy adds, with some justice, that the Harvard campus is one of the most protected in America, and as a recipient of Z-security cover for figuring on the LTTE hit-list, he faces no difficulty visiting Harvard every summer.

It is pertinent that regardless of from where Mr Gandhi graduated, there is even today no evidence that he undertook post-graduate studies anywhere. As such, his MPhil degree requires credible explanation. Mr Swamy has demanded that Mr Gandhi make public the department from which he secured this degree and disclose the thesis he wrote to qualify for it. The demand is not unreasonable because in the affidavit submitted to the Election Commission, it appears that he did not mention graduation from Rollins College, Florida, but only gave his educational qualifications as High School and then MPhil. Some Indians have now written to the President of Rollins College to clarify matters, as the Alumni Records and also Alumni & Friends list of 1994 fail to mention Mr Gandhi, and some persons in the 1994 alumni list could not recall such a prominent personality graduating from there.

It is equally curious that the Monitor Group, where Rahul Gandhi supposedly worked in London, has clamped up about his three-year stint there. It is also not known how the "serious, immediate and life-threatening security concerns" lessened in London. All this suggests careful White Western management of Mr Rahul Gandhi's academic and professional qualifications and public projection of the same, which does not augur well for Indian democracy. This may, therefore, be an appropriate occasion for former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to clarify reports about the mysterious detention of Mr Gandhi at an American airport during his premiership, and his role in having him released.

Further, given the concerns of many Indians about his mother's nationality and religious affiliations (which caused her to associate with discredited Western evangelists like Ron Watts), it would be in the fitness of things for Mr Rahul Gandhi to clarify if he possesses an Italian passport (and nationality) besides his Indian ones, and what faith he practices. I specifically wish to know whether or not he is a Hindu like the late Indira Gandhi, the grandmother in whose house he was born and raised.

Finally, there is a need to explain the spectacular performance of the little known Backops Engineering, which is constructing the International Airport Terminal Building at Mumbai, container freight station for Maersk Sealand, Training Centres for RBI, headquarters of Wochhardt Ltd and Wockhardt Hospital in Mumbai, IPCL township at Nagothane, meditation hall at Osho Commune of Pune, among others (Deccan Herald, May 29, 2004). Though based on Arthur Bunder Road opposite Taj Mahal Hotel in south Mumbai, hardly anyone in the construction industry had ever heard of this company, which managed to grab such prestigious projects without creating an overt ripple in the market. Eighty-three per cent of the firm's shares are owned by Mr Rahul Gandhi, according to his election affidavit; the turnover and profits should be impressive.

January 21, 2007

LEAVE SWASTIKA, BAN RACE THEORIES




German initiative to ban the swastika is a meaningless gesture that leaves untouched the greater evil of Nazi era academic race theories.

N.S. Rajaram

In a fit of self-righteousness, Germany, which holds the rotating presidency of the European Union, has announced that it will make Holocaust denial punishable in the member states of the EU, including a ban on Nazi symbols like the swastika. Unfortunately, the Honorable Justice Minister, who has come out with the proposal has got both his history and his priorities wrong. If he is serious about banning the evil of racism, he should leave the Indian sacred symbol alone and ban the teaching of Nazi era race theories that continue to flourish in Western academia in various guises.

It is important to note that Hitler and the Nazis appropriated their ideas and symbols from European mythology, not India. Hitler’s Aryans worshipped Apollo and Odin, not Vedic deities like Indra and Varuna. His so-called swastika was not really the swastika, but ‘Hakenkreuz’ or the hooked cross, which has no counterpart in India. It appeared in Germany for the first time when General von Luttwitz’s notorious Erhardt Brigade marched into Berlin from Lithuania in support of the abortive Kapp Putsch of 1920. The Erhardt Brigade was one of several freebooting private armies during the chaotic years following Germany’s defeat in World War I. They had the covert support of the Wehrmacht (Army headquarters).

The Honorable Minister should also note that that the notion of the Aryan race was nowhere as important in India as it came to be in Europe. In the whole the Rig Veda, in all of its ten books, the word Arya appears only about forty times. In contrast, Hitler’s Mein Kampf uses the term Arya and Aryan many times more. Hitler did not invent it. The idea of Aryans as a superior race was already in the air— in Europe, not India. Swastika had nothing to do with it, but racism did.

But far more serious is the Honorable Minister’s ignorance of the persistence of Nazi era race theories in Western academia. The fall of the Third Reich did not put an end to academic race theories that formed the core of its ideology. While avoiding overtly racial terms, scholars in disciplines like Indo-European Studies continue to uphold scientifically discredited and historically disgraced theories built around the Aryan myth.

Some academics have resorted to media campaigns and political lobbying to save their theories and the discipline from natural extinction— a tactic that came to the fore when California education authorities attempted to remove these theories from their school curriculum. A singular feature of this neo-racist scholarship is the replacement of anti-Semitism by anti-Hinduism.

Of particular concern to the German Government should be the lead being taken by some scholars of German origin in perpetuating these justly disgraced Nazi era ideas. In this context, I would like to draw the Honorable Minister’s attention to the activities of the Harvard based German linguist Michael Witzel, who led the lobbying campaign to save the Aryan theories from being axed from California schools. If Germany and the EU are serious about correcting historical wrongs, they should eradicate the ideas that gave rise to this hateful ideology and not engage in cosmetics like banning a harmless symbol.

Rahul Gandhi , did you graduated with a BA from Rollins College in 1994 ?

Source: Baltimore Indymedia

OPEN LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT OF ROLLINS COLLEGE , FLORIDA

To

The President
Mr.Lewis M. Duncan
Rollins College
1000 Holt Ave. Winter Park,
FL 32789 , USA
Tel: 407.646.2000
Email : contact@rollins.edu
Registration@Rollins.edu

Sub : Clarification about Mr.Rahul Gandhi's BA Graduation from Rollins College ,FL .


Dear Sir ,

I wish to verify a report which said that , Mr.Rahul Gandhi , scion of Indian political family , belongs to Nehru Dynasty was a BA graduate (1994) from Rollins College . The Newsweek carried his profile in "Who's who in 2007" in December 2005 edition as a young leader [1] , which had "several inaccuracies" .

That prompted Rahul Gandhi's lawyer Mr.Abhishek Singhvi to send a legal notice to the magazine , and editor of NEWSWEEK, a well known Journalist Mr.Fareed Zakaria had apologised for the errors and stated that "Serious, immediate and life-threatening security concerns compelled Gandhi to transfer to Rollins College in Florida, from where he graduated with a BA in 1994. Gandhi went to receive an M Phil in Development Economics from Trinity College, Cambridge University, contrary to what we had said "[2]

However , we Indians learned for the first time that he did his BA from Rollins College Florida , earlier he kept this as secret and even didn't mentioned in the affidavit submitted to the election commission , where he mentioned his education qualifications as High School and then MPhil [3].


When we checked Alumni Records [4] and also Alumni & Friends[4] list of 1994 , we couldn't able find his name in the list and also the some individuals in the 1994 alumni list when contacted said , they are not familiar with that name and person and said such prominent personality Graduating from Rollins naturally enhances the reputation of College .

Earlier in 2004 media projected him in many ways to the Indian public , please take a look at this article which has tabulated in detail [5] . Citizen of India need to know their future leader's correct education qualifications . This family has a history of lying to the Indian Public , example a) His Father Late Mr.Rajive Gandhi , Prime Minister of India ,lied to the Indian Public that he was Qualified Engineer from Cambridge University , upon enquiry it revealed that he didn't passed a single exam . b) His Mother ,Ms.Sonia Gandhi , Member of parliament , Head of Congress Party , lied under oath in the Parliament that she was a Graduate of Cambridge University , when confronted she later twisted by mentioning that she attended an english teaching shop in Cambridge ,UK.

Based on the family track record of lying to the Indian Public , We request you to clarify to the Indian public whether Mr.Rahul Gandhi , Member of Parliament , India is a (1994) BA Graduate of Rollins Colege,Florida .

Sincerely ,

Radhika Singh

Email : radhikasingh70@yahoo.com



REFERENCES
Click to go to the links

[1]
[2]
[3]
[4] (See Page 60 , 1994)
[5]
[6]

Copy to:

1. Student Records Email : Registration@Rollins.edu
2. Fareed Zakaria comments@fareedzakaria.com
3. Abhishek Singhvi is MP, Congress National Spokesperson and Senior Advocate
Email Abhishek Singhvi: abhisheks777@rediffmail.com