“If we don’t end war, war will end us.” – HG Wells
By Tridib Raman
The world has now witnessed the unhinged madness and cruel stubbornness of Russian President, Vladimir Putin. What followed that has become an unerasable blot on humanity’s escutcheon. There is no strand of justice in a superpower like Russia that holds not only international dominance, possesses nuclear power and commands a formidable army, attacks a smaller country like Ukraine, with a weaker military force and a small population.
However, the world also witnessed when on 1st March, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy received a standing ovation for his moving and powerful speech for his country- Ukraine, which he delivered virtually in the European Union Parliament, the Parliamentarians kept clapping for the fearless leader until he had moved out of frame. With this, Ukraine was declared a member of the European Union, this might seem like a win for Ukraine, however, Russia has not stopped its attacks. They have been targeting inhabited areas of Ukraine to attack with missiles. The cries of the innocent dying and mourning have fallen deaf on the ears of a dictator blinded by lunacy.
A country like India that has historically prided itself in its democracy shocked everyone with its unclear and inadequate stance on the Russo-Ukrainian conflict. Following in the footsteps of China and UAE, India chose to be absent from the UN Security Council meeting on the conflict. On 2nd March, the United Nations passed a resolution against Russia, but India was one of the only 5 countries to skip out on that meeting. It should be noted that this was the third overall meeting on this conflict hosted by the UN that was for sanctions against Russia where India refused to attend, indirectly showing its ‘Pro-Moscow’ stance. Has Prime Minister Narendra Modi also found himself trapped in the same ‘Moscow Line’ as Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi?
In 1956, something uncannily similar had happened when the Soviet Union had attacked Hungary and also tried to suppress the public protest movements through harsh military force but even back then, PM Nehru had sustained his silence. Similar to her father, Indira Gandhi did not speak against the Soviet Union’s attack on Czechoslovakia in 1968 and their attack on Afghanistan in 1975. Even PM Modi has ended up, consciously or subconsciously, keeping up this tradition.
Despite the harsh truth that when in 1962, China attacked India, our ‘well-wisher’ Russia supported China, and nations like the USA and UK provided aid to us. Back then, China had managed to capture thousands of square metres of our land. At that time, Russia did not frown upon this or protest against China on any international protest in our favour, making it clearly evident where their support lied.
We should be relieved that at an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council in May 1963, Kennedy’s United States also considered nuclear options against China, which eventually led to China withdrawing. But today, the people of Ukraine along with their army and the President have shown that they have the courage to lay down their lives for the independence and sovereignty of their country, even if that means fighting against an unhinged power-hungry dictator. If the rest of the world would have donned silence like India and China then humanity and ethics would have maybe faced a cruel end. Support, acknowledgment, and compassion for Ukraine is flowing throughout the world and the righteousness, courage, and patriotism of Zelenskyy towards his country and people will be remembered. It is true that a nation, community, people climb the ladders of greatness through sacrifices. No matter how strong and undefeatable an attacker may be, they are nothing but a black blotch on humanity and mankind.
As the great Dinkar wrote in Kurukshetra.
“Alas, he has to fight
He may be victorious
But on the battleground, he can see the truth weep with his eyes”
We would like to thank and appreciate Foreign Affairs expert, Sankar Ray for his dedication and hard work. Despite the March Issue already being in the press, he did not miss the deadline for his brilliant cover story. The commendable combination of age, experience, and academia gives us the opportunity to see the objective, fresh and insightful writing like that of Sankar ray that forces us to read and think in a different way.
Recently, in New Delhi, the TIOL Awards and Conclave concluded successfully and we must appreciate the Founder of TIOL, Shailendra Kumar who managed to raise awareness and interest in an important but sadly, dry topic like tax. In the future, Parliamentarian and TIOL Foundation hope to touch new heights together. We are currently working on the road map of this collaboration. After escaping and surging forward from the dark times of the COVID surge, your favourite magazine is ready to aim for the sky again. Let us all hope to accept it with open hearts and minds.
We, at Parliamentarian, hope that you will enjoy reading this issue just as we enjoyed working on it for you. We would love to hear your thoughts and feedback about this issue at firstname.lastname@example.org.