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Expel David Mulford, US Ambassador To India

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This article was originally posted in a slightly different form at Desicritics.org, a Blogcritics.org network site, providing news and information on media, culture, politics, sports, etc. with a South Asian focus. Visit Desicritics.org for more fine stuff.

Posted on Desicritics by Satya.

The latest diplomatic gaffe of David Mulford, US Ambassador to India, wherein he asked India to refer Iran to the UN Security Council else lose the nuclear deal signed last year, has produced at least one result which should please him. He wanted India’s decision on supporting the US position on Iran to be influenced by the United States, and he will get his wish. Now the question is no longer whether India supports Iran over the issue but whether Indian policy decisions are made for them by the United States.

Mulford has put India in a position where it has to assert its sovereignty and the whole IAEA debate has explicitly shifted from Indo-Iran to Indo-US. In earlier votes, the Indian Government went to great lengths to decouple their nuclear deal with the US from the Iranian nuclear situation. David Mulford has now coupled the two issues with his diplomatic seal. Even those who supported India’s earlier vote against Iran will now be likely oppose it just because they don’t like the idea of the US dictating Indian policy, not because it has to do with issues like the nuclear Wal-Mart of Pakistan’s A. Q. Khan, or Iran trying to build nuclear bombs, etc. If the Indian government shows some spine and votes for Iran then America has no one but Mulford to blame.

If on the other hand, India votes against Iran as per the US directive, then it will make a mockery of itself. This action will present India as a country which is incapable of making its own decisions yet thinks it can tell other countries how they should behave. It will also create the perception of a precedent for continued American dictation of Indian decisions in the future under the pretext of one deal or other.

There is only one way left for India to take this decision on merit, and that is possible only after the expulsion of Mulford. It does not matter whether America recalls him or India expels him, his removal is the only way to salvage the situation.

(In the past I had supported India’s vote against Iran. Here and Here)

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About Justene Adamec

  • Political grand-standing with large countries won’t help advance the US cause

  • Bliffle

    I think this position is a bit myopic. For one thing, national sovereignty is not what it used to be. No nation has forfeited NS more than the US. Witness the dependence on oil and cheap consumer goods from China. Soon the auto industry will follow. It is simply true that in the modern world we are all much more inter-dependent.

  • Aaman, political grandstanding just to ‘stick it’ to the US doesn’t advance India’s causes at all either.


  • Would the US toe the line of China on the issue of Tibet? I guess national sovereignty issues are relevant only when they apply to the US

  • Wanting India to join in on condemning Iran – which they likely would have done anyway – is hardly asking them to give up their sovereignty. It’s still their decision to make, but choosing to go against the US just because they feel slighted is an exercise in ego gratification, not the protection of national sovereignty they might want to spin it as.

    And for the record, the US has been extremely restrained with China on the issue of Tibet and many other human rights issues. Much more so than we should have been, IMO.


  • ‘Wanting’ India to condemn Iran and ‘Warning’ to do it is different. What Mulford did was to warn India to toe the US line or else it won’t get the nuclear deal. I think it is pretty naive on the part of Mulford if he thinks nuclear deal can be a ransom and as a ambassador he has a right to Warn the host nation.

    What was the need of Mulford to warn India and that too on the eve of our national day ? Has US left its diplomacy in the hands of such unseasoned politicians ?

  • Satya,

    Good on you for calling for the expulsion of the American ambassador. American ambassadors seem all to arrogant these days. If India does expel the American ambassador, the American will begin to thiok twice about their open arrogance. They will still try to bully your country around, though it will be more covert.

  • MAN