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How To Deal With Gaza After Hamas

Thursday, July 17, 2014

India's perspective on the Israel/Hamas conflict

...India’s best friend in West Asia is not any of the Arab countries or the Palestinians whose cause we have ceaselessly supported since 1947, but Israel. We have strong defence ties with Israel, and even emotionally many Indians feel more for the Israelis than the Arabs or Palestinians. Israel is surrounded by hostile neighbours – which cannot but evoke sympathy from a population long subjected to jihadi attacks inspired and supported by Pakistan.
Why then do we try and avoid saying this more often? There are three reasons why India seeks strong ties with the Arab Muslim world despite the fact that most of them are ruled by despots and are almost never seen on our side on issues like Kashmir: our own domestic Muslim constituency, the large Indian diaspora in the Gulf, and our dependence on West Asian oil.
This was evident yesterday (15 July), when most of the non-NDA opposition walked out over the Modi government’s refusal to pass a resolution to condemn Israel’s attacks on Gaza. The government did not flinch or bend, knowing full well that this was all about appeasing domestic Muslim sentiment – a communal vote which all “secular” parties barring the BJP seem to aspire for...

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