Monday, July 22, 2024

Ambassador Garcetti, Focus on Diplomacy, not on US Domestic Battles

WASHINGTON, DC: With Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s victory, it is a propitious time to review the health of Indo-American relations. While much is positive in the relationship there are some dangerous shoals ahead due to changes not in India, but in the United States. The most important of which is a consequence of the ideological upheaval between the so-called “progressive” political Left and the traditional American ideology of liberalism, traditional family values—namely the protection of children. The injection of Wokeism into this important relationship is causing confusion for America’s friends around the globe, especially for our Indian friends. Countries around the world are perplexed, and angered, by these extreme pronouncements and celebrations intruding from US embassies. Where July 4th or Independence Day celebrations were annual, such joyous occasions were rather rare. Today, due to the ideological success of the progressive Left, there is a flood of identity celebrations and events throughout the year, each seemingly designed to destroy the motto that has made America so unique—E Pluribus Unum—from many, one.

On the one hand, foreign observers may smile benignly at an America that seems to find new groups to tout and causes to celebrate with each new manufactured holiday. Yet, they must also wonder if in the quest to fundamentally transform America, these progressives will reinvent the calendar beyond 12 months so that there can be new months to celebrate new identity groups.

Of course, on the other hand, these acts are evidence of a United States that is going through an ideological civil war, the results of which are unknown and of grave concern. Confident states do not need to announce that they are celebrating the X, Y, or Z groups every month, while those nations with doubts about what they believe, do find it increasingly necessary to so. A US that is uncertain of its history, identity and of its place in the world is a somber apprehension. Most assuredly this march towards disunity within the American body politic is nothing for friends of America to celebrate, at a time when the threat from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is worsening.

In that light, America’s many friends in India must be nonplussed when US Ambassador Eric Garcetti issues his remarks on “pride” month. Garcetti’s devotion to the far-left agenda was manifest when he rudely chastised the world’s largest democracy last month, on the verge of their national elections, when he stated “in broad terms, diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility are not just concerns for election day. They are ongoing.”

Garcetti further demonstrated lectured that “Democracy is a daily plebiscite. We must all work to ensure that everyone, whether an ethnic or religious minority, women, youth, or the poor, feels they have an equal stake in democracy.” It appears from his remarks that he is advancing a far-left agenda. Most worrisome is that he seems to do so with relish, completely forgetting his diplomatic responsibilities as the U.S. ambassador of all Americans to India. More importantly, such pronouncements offend many Indians and so hurt his ability to advance U.S. interests in India. The images he projects of the United States are not ones with which most Indians are familiar. Seeing the United States as a zealous advocate of “trans rights” is perplexing to most citizens in other countries, as it is to the majority of Americans. The consequence of having an ambassador who insists on injecting what is a problematic issue in U.S. politics on their Indian hosts is akin to being invited to someone’s home and then lecturing them on how they should raise their children. It is by its very nature antithetical to what it requires to be successful in building strong ties between the two largest democracies in the world.

The ideological tension in the U.S. is playing out within traditional U.S. strengths in education, science, and technology. Forcing this far left ideology in schools is rightly seen as a threat to Indians living in the U.S. who have children in the U.S. educational system. An America that pushes this Woke Ideology is an America that is in danger of being seen to be in direct variance with several traditional Indian values. If allowed to continue, such radical leftism will ultimately erode U.S. and Indian relations and that would be a great disaster for both nations.

Worst yet is that in the context of U.S.-India relations, the U.S. military is not immune from this ideological struggle. Sustaining a professional military requires what Samuel Huntington termed “objective civilian control.” By this, he meant that the U.S. military possesses an independent military domain which will sustain the professional officer corps. A problem for maintaining objective control arises when there is pressure from the political leadership to trespass on this domain for the achievement of other objectives, as required by progressivism. Military professionalism requires that the military domain be isolated from the cultural, ideological, and social pressures that impact the rest of government.

These pressures on the U.S. Defense Department are more than the historical problems of cynicism, careerism, or favoritism. These problems have always existed, but a historically robust U.S. military professionalism kept them in check. Because of that check, alliances like the Quad flourished as American, Indian, Japanese and Australian navies conducted combined naval exercises from the Indian Ocean to the South China Sea. The strength of the Quad was that our nations shared a common bond of devotion to freedom, democracy and traditional family values, especially those that focused on the protection and education of our children—the future for both cultures and nations.

Today, the U.S. Department of Defense faces a more profound problem, a progressive ideology that causes the Department to confront a new hierarchy of perverted principles, values, and culture. This ideological pressure erodes the independent military domain and thus the military’s professionalism. As a result of the decline in professionalism, the Department has less ability to restrain its historical problems of careerism and cynicism while simultaneously it faces a host of new challenges generated by ideological change. A direct result of these far-left policies is made manifest in problems like historically low recruitment that the U.S. military services are encountering. There are others like lack of discipline, focus on self over unit cohesion. Ultimately, the bulwark of military professionalism is being undermined by these far-left problems—and they must be solved.

Stronger ties matter for India and its security, due to the growing relationship between the heretofore supremely professional militaries tasked with the security of their two great states. Each is threatened by the CCP. The CCP challenges the U.S. globally, attacks its homeland with drugs and economic warfare, and seeks to undermine its relationships with its allies and partners. Equally, the greatest threat to India’s security is the CCP. This threat is especially immediate and grave. People’s Liberation Army units and missiles are stationed on the Tibetan Plateau and can strike every city in India. People’s Liberation Army Navy naval ports in Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and Myanmar are part of the CCP’s efforts to encircle India. For the sake of America’s own national security, which rests upon alliances with like-minded democracies like India, U.S. diplomacy must change course. It must convey resoluteness that U.S. traditionally has evinced to its allies in the struggle against totalitarian regimes. India should not expect less from the United States, while the United States’ leaders should understand this and change the approach of their top diplomat in Delhi.

Author profile
James E. Fanell

James Fanell is a retired captain in the U.S. Navy, former director of intelligence and information operations for the U.S. Pacific Fleet, and coauthor of Embracing Communist China: America’s Greatest Strategic Failure.

Author profile
Bradley Thayer

Bradley A. Thayer is a Founding Member of the Committee on Present Danger China and the coauthor with James E. Fanell of Embracing Communist China: America’s Greatest Strategic Failure.

- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img

Latest news

Mongolian Rap Concerts Canceled in Southern Mongolia for Being “Anti-China” and “Insulting China”

Mr.Tugsjargal Munkherdene, known as Big Gee, one of the most popular rap artists from the independent country of Mongolia,...

Massive IT Outage Spotlights Major Vulnerabilities in the Global Information Ecosystem

The global information technology outage on July 19, 2024, that paralyzed organizations ranging from airlines to hospitals and even...

The US Must Not Fail Philippines in the Face of PRC Aggression: Lessons for India

PRC’s militaristic expansion represents a major threat to regional and international stability and is a direct threat against U.S....

Terrorism Returns in Jammu and Kashmir

Washington, DC - In recent weeks, there has been a sudden increase in terrorist incidents in the North Indian...
- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img

Rekindling Hope for Tibet, East Turkestan, Shaksgam, and Aksai Chin

Washington, DC - A high-level bipartisan US congressional delegation led by Republican Representative Michael McCaul of Texas arrived in...

Showcasing Success: The U.S.-Mongolia Partnership Through Trade and Culture

Washington, DC - The Third Neighbor Initiative, a key player in fostering the enduring partnership between the United States...

Must read

Showcasing Success: The U.S.-Mongolia Partnership Through Trade and Culture

Washington, DC - The Third Neighbor Initiative, a key...