With the geopolitical engagements on a surge, General Qassem Soleimani’s death has posed challenges for Ministry of External Affairs of India, but not as just another nation, the late General’s cause has a strong vote from history and policy to substantiate the claim of support.

Ever since the George W. Bush administered Iraq Skirmish surpassed the thirty year long Vietnam War to clinch the title of the biggest geopolitical blunder by the United States; the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action or Iran Nuclear Deal in July 2015 was deemed to be a progression towards stability in the Middle East and the world at large. But, the Donald Trump government’s withdrawal from this historic advancement in global peacekeeping in May 2018 escalated tensions through out the world including the United States.

Just three days after the entry into the ultimate year of the decade sets the world forth with World War 3 trending; despite the expert’s sacking the chances of one in the first place, the United State’s air strike on Iranian Military Base to assassinate Iran’s topmost official & commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) General Qassem Soleimani, the attack has aggravated tensions through out the Middle East ensuing severe repercussions for the entire world. With, the killing of a military officer like Soleimani who was viewed as a ‘hero’ inside the Iranian Republic, the United States identified him as a ‘terrorist’ dangerous for US Troops and Ambassadors through out the globe.

As, the man in charge of the proxy wars in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen, General Soleimani was to be credited for limiting the influence of Islamic State of Iraq & Levant (ISIL)/(ISIS) in the area and played a crucial role in fighting terrorist from Iran, and more from Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Lebanon. Soleimani was the chief architect in saving Basshar Al Assad’s regime in Syria whose survival was on the line and helped him take back the control of important cities & towns from ISIL, the process did cost thousands of Syrian civillians their lives and loss to public property.

But, General Soleimani’s presence wasn’t confined to Iran or the Middle East, the highly influential leader has been a strong ally of India at multiple fronts and occasions; exercising deep influence in administrative and cultural life of Iran, under his leadership India has continued to enjoy Iran’s support economically, strategically and generally. Iran continues to be the second largest supplier of Crude Oil to India with an average supply of 425,000 barrels per day. A poll conducted in 2005 found out that, 71% of Iranians viewed India’s influence positively, counting as the most favourable rating of India for any country in the world.

In the same year, India had voted against Iran’s interests at the International Atomic Energy Association (IAEA), casting hindrances on Iran’s claim of peaceful nuclear research. The Indian vote against Iran came as a surprise to Iranians as they considered India to be one of their closest friends with a strong historical linkage. Later at the diplomatic dialogue with the Iranian armed officials, India cleared it stance citing politico-military consideratios and it’s larger interest in the peace of the region. To this, the Iranian general positively responded by respecting India’s concerns and assuring India of Iran’s unaffected support and friendship. Further, it was General Soleimani who assisted India in operating with the Northern Alliance later despite the IAEA votings at Vienna.

These reasons might have probed the rejection of Trump’s claim with regard to plan of attacks extending to New Delhi, which wasn’t received to be credible with experts and former diplomats.

Soleimani and Iran have often even objected to Pakistan’s attempts to engage in activities and resolutions against the interests of India at international organisations such as the Organisation of Islamic Countries(OIC) and the Human Rights Commission. One of these was observed when Soleimani backed India at The International Court of Justice in Pakistan’s case against Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian Commander who is allegedly charged for spying for Research & Analysis Wing of India in Balochistan, Pakistan.

“Be it the negotiations on the Chabahar port or Islamabad’s case in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) against Kulbhushan Jadhav, he had been been a backer of India on issues of national interest,” says veteran defense expert Qamar Agha.

Soleimani was even instrumental in the construction of Chabahar Port which is expected to boost the Indian economy by giving passage for Indian Goods in Central Asia and imports from Iran & other states. The joint interest construction between India and Iran is resultant of the favourable policies by both countries in which General Soleimani had a huge role to play.

To honor this veteran general and ally India needs to be more proactive in the persian region for its economic and strategic interests and abandon its stance of neutrality. This might pose as a serious examination for New Delhi to balance between Tehran and Washington DC, the Ministry of External Affairs needs a very comprehensive action to withstand country’s honor and fulfill its interests.

Faizan Salik

[email protected]

Image Credits: Vox.com

Once upon a time there existed a brain within each member of the Middle Eastern civilization. In a series of clandestine correspondences with God, this civilization arranged to have its brains exchanged for bottomless reserves of oil and thus the present day Middle East was born. Iraq is quite a bona fide member of this agglomeration being, as it is, full to the brim with A grade idiots. Although being an idiot is not as rewarding as, say, not being an idiot, it does help in quick decision making. An Iraqi idiot, much like a non-Iraqi idiot, does not, when considering whether or not to bean someone with a shoe, think along the lines of Newton’s third law. He just takes aim and deploys; often mere seconds separating inception and execution. It is rumoured that George Bush has researched deeply on this subject.

In 2008, after having dumped half of the ACME Inc.’s annual output on Iraq, Bush decided that a personal touch would top it all off. It was while Bush was busy inflicting his presence, a weapon unparalleled in its potency, on poor Iraq that the idea of putting footwear or two across him made its debut in the mind of an Iraqi journalist. Between the acting of a dreadful thing and the first motion, all the interim may well have been like a phantasma or a hideous dream for Brutus, but for the Iraqi journalist it was a stroll in the park. And a quick stroll at that, for hardly had the idea made itself comfortable in the journalist’s brain, when it received the green signal and two shoes promptly made their way towards the Bush
forehead one after the other.

In supposing that Bush on perceiving footwear bearing down on him would turn to stone, the Iraqi was mistaken. His face has that quality, experts say, which makes it extremely difficult for shoes not to beam towards it. The upshot is that while most human beings, on finding a shoe or two hurtling towards them at remarkable speed, utter a sharp, ‘Oh golly!’ and promptly turn to stone, George Bush in a similar situation, reacts with a blasé ‘you again’ and initiates an evasive manoeuvre. Just when the journalist thought that he had effected a perfect lovers’ reunion, Bush’s latest evasive manoeuvre lay his efforts to waste. Further by sacrificing both his shoes for the cause, the Iraqi has declared himself a non-starter for a column such as this. The author thus has no alternative but to fill up Bush’s shoes.

George Bush has been the go to punching bag for some time now. If talk shows run out of issues or people to malign, they automatically turn to Bush bashing to pass the time. Although Bush has done enough by way of mass murders to deserve most of the vitriol, one has to understand that it wasn’t all his fault. Different men like to do different things with their free time. Some listen to music, others might enjoy reading. Similarly when George Bush has time on his hands, he just enjoys destroying countries and killing people. One can’t really blame him for that. The society does not call out people who listen to Beiber and blast them in public even though it accepts that the aforesaid is a much bigger crime. Be that as it may, we conclude that everything else remaining the same, Bush is happier when countries are being destroyed. But, could he have done anything different with regards to the shoe incident to ensure his happiness?

If I were in his place, I would have resisted the temptation of not being hit on the face by a shoe and taken one of the projectiles on the chin. Apart from the fact that a sole imprint would vastly improve the aesthetics of Bush’s face, there are other benefits to be had from getting hit by a shoe. Below I list a series of events which would realise these benefits.

Event 1- Shoe connects with Bush’s face.
Event 2- Bush storms back to America. Condemns the incident as being the worst attack on USA. He discusses arms proliferation and how its child’s play nowadays to acquire shoes.
Event 3- It is found that the propensity to pelt shoes is a communicable disease and thus for the sake of global peace and security, the whole of Iraq will have to be eliminated.
Event 4- The Middle Eastern civilization has always believed in excellence in the art of producing children. People are expected to put in their best and come up with at least four. In fact people with less than four children are looked down upon and often stoned to death. The upshot is that Iraqi journalists in general, though lacking in brains are richly endowed with siblings, cousins, uncles and aunts spread out throughout the Middle East. Bush makes quite a compelling case for attacking the whole of Middle East. He says that skills such as shoe pelting run in the family. If an Iraqi journalist can throw a shoe, so can all his cousins, siblings, uncles and aunts.
Event 5- America attacks Middle East. Bush and the owners of ACME Inc. execute the most effervescent samba ever.