[Marxism] Indo-US Nuclear Deal: Peace Mumbai Condemns 123 Agreement

Sukla Sen suklasenp at yahoo.co.uk
Fri Aug 24 05:49:47 MDT 2007

Peace Mumbai Condemns 123 Agreement
Peace Mumbai, an umbrella organisation of various NGOs
and mass organisations based in Mumbai, notes with
serious concern that the text negotiated between the
designated US and Indian officials in Washington DC
and finalised on 20th of July for the "123 Agreement"
- a major step forward towards operationalising the
controversial nuclear cooperation deal between the US
and India has been okayed by the Union Cabinet in a
hush hush manner without taking even the law-makers,
let alone the general public, into confidence. This
obviously flies in the face of basic democratic values
and norms.
This deal, it needs be pointed out, will have serious
repercussions on the future relations between India
and the US - and thereby the rest of the world,
particularly India's traditional allies and neighbours
not too friendly with the US; the prospects of global
and regional nuclear proliferation and disarmament;
and also India's energy security.
Peace Mumbai is opposed to the deal on all these three
I.                    Strategic proximity with the US
would only provide further fillip to the US project
for unfettered global domination, which has at the
moment suffered serious setbacks being continually
delivered bloody nose in Iraq, and also Afghanistan.
Moreover, in the process, it is highly likely that
India would be drawn into, formal or informal,
military alliance with the US and be compelled to
fight its dirty wars with all the concomitant
dangerous consequences. Similarly, code-named "Malabar
07", the five-nation naval exercise that is scheduled
to take place from September 4-9 in the Bay of Bengal,
in which India, Singapore, Japan, Australia and the US
are taking part cannot but for understandable reasons
elicit hostile reactions from China and vitiate the
relations between India and its powerful neighbour for
no good reasons from the Indian point of view. Apart
from that, such growing proximity would also tend to
fuel India's burning ambitions to emerge as a
mini-hegemon in the region with the backing of the
global super-cop causing aggravation of inter-state
tensions and consequent deep hurt to the cause of
South Asian solidarity. That's evidently a profoundly
disturbing prospect.

II.                 The unique exception for India, as
is provided under the deal, would further aggravate
the discriminatory nature of the NPT; undermine the
current non-proliferation order - for whatever it is
worth, by encouraging the threshold nations to cross
the rubicon and in the process gravely damage the
prospects of global nuclear disarmament. It would also
further worsen the ongoing nuclear arms race in South
Asia by radically boosting India's capabilities for
fissile material production by freeing up all the
indigenously produced uranium for that purpose while
imported stuff would be used for power production.
III.               The radically boosted nuclear power
programme, following as a consequence, would throttle
investments for developing environmentally benign
renewable sources of energy including wind, solar
etc., having grave impacts on the prospects of
long-term energy security. This is apart from the fact
that nuclear power is not only as of now uneconomic
but also intrinsically hazardous - throughout the
complete fuel cycle from mining to power plant, and
potentially catastrophic. There is furthermore no
fail-safe method for disposal of nuclear waste and
outlived plants.
Given these serious implications, Peace Mumbai makes
its principled opposition loud and clear. The claim
that India's "strategic interests" have been taken
care of only implies that India is out to further
accelerate its downhill journey along the path of
self-destruction by further intensifying its
weaponisation programme and thereby making South Asia
and the world even more dangerous and diverting scarce
resources from social sectors even otherwise badly
starved of funds.
Peace Mumbai Constituents:
Action Aid, Akshara, Asia South Pacific Bureau for
Adult Education (ASPBAE), Bombay Urban Industrial
League for Development (BUILD), CEHAT, Coalition for
Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP), Documentation
Research and Training Center (DRTC), 
Explorations, Focus on the Global South, India, India
Center for Human Rights and Law (ICHRL), Indo-Pak
Youth Forum for Peace, 
Institute For Community Organization and Research
(ICOR), Media for People, Movement for Peace and
Justice (MPJ),  National Alliance of Peoples Movements
(NAPM), Pakistan-India Peoples Forum for Peace and
Democracy (PIPFPD), Peoples' Media Initiative, 
Vidrohi Sanskrutik Chalval, Vikas Adhyayan Kendra
(VAK), Women's Research and Action Group (WRAG), Youth
for Unity and Voluntary Action (YUVA) 

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