Friday, August 5, 2016

IndoPak Saudi Workers Troubles; Trump's Popularity in India; GOP Infighting

What is happening to construction crews from India and Pakistan working in Saudi Arabia? Why are they going unpaid for months? Could problems for Indian and Pakistani expats get worse as oil prices stay low for extended period? Will remittances from GCC nations to India and Pakistan suffer? Will poverty increase in South Asia?

Why is Trump popular with Hindu Nationalists in India? Why are many right-wing Hindus praying for Trump's victory against Hillary in US elections? Will a Trump presidency be good for India? Is there anything in common between the Hindu Right's anti-Muslim bigotry and Trump's Islamophobia? Is Donald Trump spousing xenophobic and racist views similar to those of German Nazi leader Adolf Hitler and Indian RSS Guru Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar?

Has Donald Trump been hurt by his war of words with the GoldStar family of Ghazala and Khizr Khan, the parents of the slain war hero US Army Captain Humayun Khan? Has this episode confirmed in the minds of many GOPers that Trump is temperamentally unfit to be in the Oval Office? Has it sparked a war within GOP with Republican leaders Paul Ryan and John McCain taking on the GOP top of the ticket? How will the repetition of such incidents affect the Trump campaign? Will the entire GOP ticket face historic defeat?

Viewpoint From Overseas host Misbah Azam discusses these questions with panelists Ali H. Cemendtaur and Riaz Haq (

IndoPak Saudi Workers Troubles; Trump's Popularity in India; GOP Infighting from Ikolachi on Vimeo.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Impact of Saudi Oil Revenue Slump

Hindu Nationalists Admire Hitler & Nazis

The Trump Phenomenon

Democratic National Convention

Talk4Pak Think Tank

VPOS Youtube Channel

VPOS Vimeo Channel


Bruce S. said...

Since there is so much talk of Trumpism as the rise a new form of Nazism, it might be interesting to see the first mention of Herr Hitler in the New York Times, Nov. 21, 1922, page 21, by Cyril Brown, the TImes’ political correspondent in Berlin:

ext to the high cost of living and the dollar, "Der Hitler" and his "Hakenkreuzlers" are the popular topic of talk in Munich and other Bavarian towns. This reactionary Nationalistic anti-Semitic movement has now reached a point where it is considered potentially dangerous, although not for the immediate future.

Hitler today is taken seriously among all classes of Bavarians. He is feared by some, enthusiastically hailed as a prophet and political and economic savior by others, and watched with increasing sympathetic interest by the bulk who, apparently, are merely biding the psychological moment to mount Hitler's bandwagon. Undoubtedly the spectacular success of Mussolini and the Fascisti brought Hitler's movement to the fore and gained popular interest and sympathy for it. Another condition favorable to the outburst of the movement is the widespread discontent with the existing state of affairs among all classes in the towns and cities under the increasing economic pressure.

Hitler's "Hakenkreuz" movement is essentially urban in character. It has not yet caught a foothold among the hardy Bavarian peasantry and highlanders, which would make it really dangerous. As a highly placed personage put it:

"Hitler organized a small insignificant group of National Socialists two years ago, since when the movement has been smoldering beneath the surface. Now it has eaten its way through, and a conflagration of course is not only possible, but certain if this now free flame of fanatical patriotism finds sufficient popular combustible material to feed on."


But several reliable, well-informed sources confirmed he idea that Hitler's anti-Semitism was not so genuine or violent as it sounded, and that he was merely using anti-Semitic propaganda as a bait to catch masses of followers and keep them aroused, enthusiastic an in line for the time when his organization is perfected and sufficiently powerful to be employed effectively for political purposes.

A sophisticated politician credited Hitler with peculiar political cleverness for laying emphasis and over-emphasis on anti-Semitism, saying: "You can't expect the masses to understand or appreciate your finer real aims. You must feed the masses with cruder morsels and ideas like anti-Semitism. It would be politically all wrong to tell them the truth about where you are really leading them."

Anonymous said...

It's very clear that low oil prices will affect Saudis and other gulf countries who spread violent and extremist Islam throughout South Asia Middle East Far East Asian countries. Low oil prices is good for economies like Pakistan India etc who rely and spent a lot of foreign exchange on oil thereby affecting our balance of trade.
Less money the middleeast has's better for world peace.

19640909rk said...

Riaz Bhai, your opinon that Hindus / Indians love Hitler is flawed. Hitler was a monster who exterminated 6 million Jews. Such large number of killings and cleansing are anethema to Hindu religion. Hindu religion is based on Dharma and Karma. Our gods do not dictate us to kill or eliminate anybody from the face of this earth - unlike some ideologies.

For thousands of years India has been a place of refuge for various groups of refugees like Jews, Parsis, Armenians etc, who were fleeing Arab cruelty. None of them faced any problems in India. India is the only place beside west(including Israel) where Shias, Ahmedis, Bohras etc are safe from persecution- and they can practice their faith. FYI, there are 175 million plus Muslims in India. They chose to stay back. Unlike Pakistani Hindus whose property was looted and expelled, they are safe in India.

Riaz Haq said...

19640909rk: "Hindu religion is based on Dharma and Karma. Our gods do not dictate us to kill or eliminate anybody from the face of this earth - unlike some ideologies"

This "peaceful Hindu" myth has been shattered repeatedly throughout history, not just in the recent past in Gujarat, Delhi, Ayodhya, Kashmir and elsewhere.

Here's a 2015 piece by Aaakar Patel:

We have never had a problem spilling our own blood, for instance. The Marathas conquered Gujarat, and still hold on to Baroda. This was not a peaceful or democratic takeover.

Ashok flattened Kalinga and massacred thousands of Oriyas. Nobody disputes this. It wasn't a lack of visa or tolerance that stopped him from attempting the same in China or Burma or Australia. It was natural borders. North Indian dynasties had little geographic space in which to conquer 'foreign', meaning non-subcontinental, territory.

In the south, there are other examples. In the same period that north India was invaded by Muslims and England invaded by France, the Tamilians under the Cholas invaded southeast Asia because they were among the few Indian dynasties with a competent navy.

All of this is known and I am not revealing anything new. But it is remarkable that despite this, most Indians and even ministers of the Union Cabinet, believe myths of such childish simplicity.

Another piece by Rahila Gupta:

A presence of 1400 years is surely long enough to put down roots; there were nearly 10,000 cases of recorded crimes against Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe members in 2007 and we know that most crimes do not get recorded in India because of a corrupt and brutal police force; many Indians are still reeling from the massacre of Muslims in Gujarat in 2002, one of several over the years; and only last year vicious attacks in Orissa left at least 60 Christians dead. It is little wonder that in the recent elections in India, many parties and political candidates defined their agendas in opposition to the BJP (Bharatiya Janata party), the political face of Hinduism.

Riaz Haq said...

From The Milli Gazette by Sumit Paul:

Adi Shankar was so paranoid to “save” his great Hinduism that he wrote a treatise in Sanskrit justifying the weapons and even “ritualistic sacrifice” to the deities. To him, Shankar’s Trishul (Trident) and Durga’s so many weapons in as many hands were exhortations to the devotees to emulate their deities in every respect, especially in terms of violence. That’s why he’d lay down the conditions that in philosophical discourses with Buddhist monks and scholars, whoever would lose, would have to resort to self-immolation. Many Buddhists monks immolated themselves having been defeated by the redoubtable, but extremely cunning Adi Shankar. Orientalist David Gardley opined that “Since deities are often the mental manifestations and imaginary projections of a race, community or a homogeneous group, it superimposes its own thoughts, views and ethos on the deities”.

The very mentality of the followers of Hinduism has been violent, blatantly violent at that. There’re instances recorded by the great historian and professor of history at Dhaka University Professor Ramesh Chandra Majumdar when Hindus, especially Hindu-Brahmins of the Eastern India, massacred non-Brahmin Hindus when Muslim invaders passed through their villages! Such desecrated Hindus had no right to live, believed the Brahmins and quoted from their antiquated scriptures, why gods wanted to annihilate such defiled Hindus (Oxford University Essays on Hinduism, 1965). It’s but obvious that its deities also became like that to suit this violent streak. Hinduism, “the existing paganism” (Edmund Blunden’s phrase) always approved of violence, justifying it as a measure to thwart challenges from outside and within.

History will bail me out that the Deccan plateau was red with blood of the Shaivites and Lingaites. Shaivites claimed that it was Lord Shiva’s divine order to kill the followers of the opponent sect. And that’s why he brandished his trident. Krishna, if at all he existed (though chances of his existence are very very bleak), was the main cause of Kurukshetra that witnessed unprecedented bloodshed. That’s the reason, scriptures of Jainism consign him to Raurav, the seventh and the lowest hell. When a religion believes so much in sanguinary myths and violent ways through its deities, how can it claim to be non-violent and peace-loving? Peace’s at loggerheads with such blood-thirsty faith. Brutally speaking, Hinduism institutionalised violence.

However hard the Hindu apologists may try to explain away why their gods and goddesses are shown brandishing weapons and oozing blood from mouth as in the case of Kali and other demi-gods, they can’t convince any sane mind. Even a child will refuse to be convinced by their imbecile logic and insane arguments. The bottomline is, Hinduism like many other faiths is violent and opportunistic.

Bhatia said...

Modern India has now achieved very stable status. According to Stephen P. Cohen "The balance between the secular, democratic, pluralist, and nationalist elements is deeply rooted in the social and political fabric of the country and no government is likely to tip it sharply in another direction", From : "Emerging Power India" by Stephen P Cohen Brookings Institution Press 2001. Golwalkar has been demonized by the Congress & Marxist historians which ruled the roost during most of post-independence period in India, however, Savarkar's thoughts reflected the views widely prevalent during that era and were endorsed by Golwalkar's translation of his book.

Riaz Haq said...

Bhatia: "Golwalkar has been demonized by the Congress & Marxist historians which ruled the roost during most of post-independence period in India, however, Savarkar's thoughts reflected the views widely prevalent during that era and were endorsed by Golwalkar's translation of his book."

Dr. Christine Fair, a strong critic of Pakistan and a well-known Indophile, has compared BJP to KKK and Modi to a KKK grand wizard. She has said that India's Hindu Nationalists (RSS, BJP) are like the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), the violent post-civil war white supremacist organization made up mainly of former southern confederate supporters, in the United States. The difference is that while KKK has very little popular support in America, the RSS's political wing BJP recently won general elections by a landslide, making Narendra Modi ("KKK wizard") the prime minister of India.

Rks said...

Read bhai, I never discussed history here. History all around world is blood soaked (6th century Arabia included). I was speaking about present world. Indians had a chance to drive out all muslims in 1947. Just like west Pakistan did. So all your polemics fall flat.

Kashmir is a Jehad factory. We see game Pakistan plays here. If those kids are losing eyes, they should be happy they are alive. Sorry if Pakistan wants Kashmir, they must take back all 175 million Indian muslims too.

Riaz Haq said...

19640909rk: "Kashmir is a Jehad factory. We see game Pakistan plays here. If those kids are losing eyes, they should be happy they are alive. Sorry if Pakistan wants Kashmir, they must take back all 175 million Indian muslims too"

Kashmir has nothing to do with Jehad or terrorism though many Indians want to paint it as such after 911.

Contrary to Modi's wishes, the Kashmir issue is not going to go away even with 700,000 Indian troops attempting to crush Kashmiri youths' aspirations.

The issue needs to be recognized and resolved.

Unlike the Kashmiri Muslims who want nothing to do with India, the Indian Muslims are full citizens of "secular democracy" India and must be given the rights as equal citizens promised to them by India's founding founders Gandhi and Nehru. Failing to do so exposes India as a right-wing Hindu country where minorities have no rights.

Rajiv said...

I am Hindu and a BJP supporter. I am first and foremost an Indian however. The 175 Muslims of India are Indians first as well. That is what makes India strong. Diverse and great.
If ever this gets posted, I want to tell you there are people outside of India who take advantage of your position on Indian Muslims and make India look un democratic - more like Pakistan. I know and believe your opinion is not the what majority Indians follow.

Riaz Haq said...

Rajiv: "I am Hindu and a BJP supporter. I am first and foremost an Indian however. The 175 Muslims of India are Indians first as well. That is what makes India strong. Diverse and great. '

I think you are naive about BJP and its driving ideology that is fundamentally anti-Muslim. The foundation of BJP's ideology is Guru Golwakar’s book "We or Our Nationhood Defined". BJP has never renounced it.

As the early pioneer of the Hindu right, Golwalkar wrote: “The non-Hindu people of Hindustan must either adopt Hindu culture and language, must learn and respect and hold in reverence the Hindu religion, must entertain no idea but of those of glorification of the Hindu race and culture ... In a word, they must cease to be foreigners, or may stay in the country, wholly subordinated to the Hindu nation, claiming nothing, deserving no privileges, far less any preferential treatment — not even citizens’ rights.”

“To keep up the purity of the race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the Semitic Races — the Jews,” Golwalkar wrote with approval. “Race pride at its highest has been manifested here. Germany has also shown how well nigh impossible it is for Races and cultures, having differences going to the root, to be assimilated into one united whole, a good lesson for us in Hindustan to learn and profit by. Ever since that evil day, when Moslems first landed in Hindustan, right up to the present moment, the Hindu Nation has been gallantly fighting on to take on these despoilers. The Race Spirit has been awakening.”

Girish said...

"I think you are naive about BJP and its driving ideology that is fundamentally anti-Muslim."

Action speaks louder than words. Unless Muslim population start vanishing under their watch (like Hindus have disappeared in Pak), no one is going to believe this anti BJP propaganda. Heck, I am not even seeing any spike in asylum by Indians Muslims in BD or PAK.

Owasi, an Indian MP who is completely anti BJP, slapped Pakistan in their TV program saying that Pakistan's record against Shias is worse than India's record against Muslims.

Pls read this book:

Riaz Haq said...

Girish: "Action speaks louder than words. Unless Muslim population start vanishing under their watch (like Hindus have disappeared in Pak), no one is going to believe this anti BJP propaganda. Heck, I am not even seeing any spike in asylum by Indians Muslims in BD or PAK. "

Where did you hear that "Hindus have disappeared in Pak"?

Contrary to the sensational media headlines about declining Hindu population in Pakistan, the fact is that Hindu birth rate is significantly higher than the country's national average. Although Hindus make up only 1.9% of Pakistan's population, it is among the worlds fastest growing Hindu communities today, growing faster than the Hindu populations in India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Indonesia.

As to your talk about asylums, the poorest and most deprived people never leave any country to go elsewhere fir asylum.

"One of the more intriguing nuggets about the Africa emigration story is that far from fleeing poverty, migrants out of the continent are likely to be relatively well off, and are rarely from the most destitute families" Mail and Guardian Africa

The above quote comes to mind when answering an oft-repeated question: "Why don't Indian Muslims migrate to Pakistan?" This question of why don't all of the Muslims migrate out of India to Pakistan and other Muslim nations is most often asked by the Hindu Nationalists who seek to make their country 100% "Hindu Rashtra".

Tambi Dude said...

63 died in Quetta. Yeh Dil Maange more.

Isn't it remarkable that with 1.2 billion and so diversified population (even within Hindus different caste), India has been remarkably peaceful, while 97% muslims in Pakistan are killing far more in a year than India does in a decade.

Of course this has nothing to do with islam.

Riaz Haq said...

Srinivasan: "Of course this has nothing to do with islam."

You are right. It's nothing to do with Islam and everything to do with Indian RAW inspired terror in Pakistan.


1. Ajit Doval speech talking about covert war against Pakistan.

2. India agent Kulbhushan Yadav's arrest in Balochistan last year.

3. India's past behavior as well-documented by ex RAW officer RK Yadav in "Mission R&AW".

Riaz Haq said...

Modi's biography of Golwalkar suggests RSS leader was vital influence ( Aakar Patel's translation of Modi's essay)

In 2008, after his second assembly election win in 2007, Narendra Modi wrote a book in Gujarati titled ‘Jyotipunj’ (Beams of Light) in which he retold the life stories of 16 men who inspired him. All 16 were members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, and many of them mentored the young Modi in his time as a pracharak, or activist, in Ahmedabad in the mid- and late 1970s.

The longest biography is of the RSS’s second sarsanghchalak, or paramount leader, MS Golwalkar, who expanded the organisation after he was given charge by its founder KB Hedgewar. Golwalkar died in 1973, when Modi was 23 and already in the RSS.

He does not refer to any personal contact with the RSS leader in this essay. Even so, the reverence with which Modi writes of Golwalkar in the essay, titled ‘Pujniya Shri Guruji,’ (Guru Worthy of Worship), suggests that Golwalkar is the second most important influence – Vivekanand is the first – on the life of the prime minister of India. The love of nation and of unity, the insistence on uniformity and suspicion of diversity, all of this Modi shares with Golwalkar.

Anonymous said...

The problem with Indians is that they have one dimensional thinking. When their ilk does something wrong, it is justified. But all hell breaks lose when they are the victims.
For thousands of years they treated their own kind as sub-humans, but that is always ignored. What is remembered is that Jews and Parsis were given shelter in India. The fact is what India did to lower casts for thousands of years is worst then all the genocides in the world combined. But they always cry of what Muslims did in India.
Mehmood Ghaznavi is a villain because he destroyed Somnath. How many times Somnath was looted before him by local Hindu kings is never mentioned, nor the fact that it was a Hindu Raja who directed Mehmood towards Somnath.
For centuries Indians were busy killing each other but that is ignored. Foreign rulers are vilified for doing 1/10 of what locals did. Ashoka is a national hero, that he is supposed to have killed 99 of his own brothers is ignored, that he is supposed to have killed 10,000 Jains in one night is hardly ever mentioned.
India is responsible for introducing terrorism in South Asia, starting from Mukti-Bahini against Pakistan, to Shanti-Bahini against Bangladesh to LTTE against Sri Lanka. India kept supporting LTTE till few years ago when US declared it a terrorist organization. But now that India is the victim of terrorism they have become a champion of Anti-Terrorism squad.
Our Indian friends always celebrate when there is a terrorism incident in Pakistan. But the fact is that these acts are carried out by a small number of misguided people. When in Pakistan’s 70+ years of history did the incidents like 84 Sikh massacre happened, when did incident like 1992 or Gujrat happen when ordinary people of a certain ethnic or religious group picked arms and started killing another group?
Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw rocks at others.

G. Ali

Anonymous said...

One more thing, how is that everyone questions to what happened to the Hindu population of Pakistan. But no one questions to what happened to the Muslim population of East Punjab? They are less than 3% of the population today, whereas they were in a majority in some areas at the time of partition. These areas were gifted by British to India at the time of partition and today their Muslim population is nonexistent.

G. Ali

Anonymous said...

A new world order is being prepared for Middle Eastern countries and countries of South Asia like Pakistan who are reliant on Saudi Arabia for support will suffer.
This new world order is becoming clear with the organised chaos in Iraq Syria Libya , etc. The rich nations of the middleeast will be forced to pay for protecting themselves from coups and terrorism. As the west relies less on Arab oil and Arabs rely more on western security the region will be affected economically.
Countries like Pakistan need to distance themselves from middle eastern countries and find new partners for economic as well as diplomatic support.

Anonymous said...

Indian history is a mountain of complexity. Not only does it relate to a HUGE number of kingdoms and rulers but all kinds of interpretations, which only a professional historian can unravel. I am no professional historian, but each time I attempt to take India forward India blocks the way by asserting PRIMITIVE hatred amongst the two religions of Islam and Hinduism.

India likes to remain a medieval nation, and no amount of prodding it to become a modern nation shows signs of being actualised. The BJP, which is in power today, is ENTIRELY there because of its ability to strengthen the Hindu-Muslim divide. People in India feed off the Hindu-Muslim divide.

India seems to be a lost cause.

I don't know whether there is anything of value in my trying to enter this deep and dirty water of the history of India's communal past.

EVEN IF there was the greatest bigotry in the past, that doesn't mean modern India should have anything to do with it. There was the most vicious hatred and internecine killings amongst Christians in Europe, in the past. That doesn't mean modern USA or Europe are obliged to do anything about these ancient killings, apart from have historians study it for the record.

However, there distorted histories cause deep confusions. It is possible that by picking up this topic, I'll merely add to the confusion. I hope not to add to the confusion but to increase clarity. At least the history should be known properly, in all its complexity.

Mahmud Gazni on way to Somanth encountered the Muslim ruler of Multan (Abdul Fat Dawod), with whom he had to have a battle to cross Multan. In the battle the Jama Masjid of Multan was badly damaged. Further on way he struck compromise with Anandpal, the ruler of Thaneshwar who escorted his army towards Somanth with due hospitality. Gazni’s army had a good number of Hindu soldiers and five out of his 12 generals were Hindus (Tilak, Rai Hind, Sondhi, Hazran etc). Before proceeding to damage the temple he took custody of the gold and jewels, which were part of the temple treasury. After the battle he issued coins in his name with inscriptions in Sanskrit and appointed a Hindu Raja as his representative in Somnath.

Anonymous said...

Alex C comment:

Muslim apologists point of the “fact” that temple-destruction and looting was a common practice even among Hindu and Jain Kings. This is very likely true. Since temples were the seat of wealth and power, it made sense to destroy a rival’s temples to prove ascendancy of one’s own patron god (and, by implication, the King whose patron that god was). Jain chroniclers seem almost pleased, and gloat, at any rate, that Mahavira was a superior god to Shiva as the latter was not able to protect “his” temple. Before Islam “compressed” the Indian pantheon into “Hinduism,” a disagreement about the primacy of Vishnu or Shiva could have very well led to bloody war! However, I do not see how any of this is even remotely connected to Ghaznavi Lootera’s greed and iconoclastic “Ghazified” zeal. This seems like whataboutery ( to me. The fact that there may be other looters and murderers among Gujaratis does not decrease the guilt of the one in question. Ghaznavi’s motives were NOT solely greed or political power—he was the first encounter of (what is now) India with militant Islamification.

Riaz Haq said...

Half-#Indian man escorted out of #Trump rally CNN Politics

A man who identified himself as half-Indian was escorted out of a Donald Trump rally on Thursday out of concern that he was a protester, but the man insisted he was a Trump supporter and said he feels that he was racially profiled.

Jake Anantha, an 18-year-old from Charlotte, was approached by a member of Trump's security team and then ushered out by police. He was told that he resembled another man who had previously disrupted Trump rallies.
"I told him I've never been to another rally in my life," Anantha said. "I'm a huge Trump supporter. I would never protest against Trump."
Anantha later tweeted that he would be voting for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson in November.
"I will definitely be voting Johnson on November 8th," he wrote Friday.