Monday, September 8, 2003 FULL SHOW | HEADLINES | NEXT: Arafat Names New Palestinian PM as Abu Mazen Resigns
2003-09-08

Israeli PM Sharon Makes Unprecedented Visit to India; Will India and Pakistan Send Troops to Iraq?

DONATE →
This is viewer supported news

As Ariel Sharon begins his three-day visit to India and as the White House continues to pressure Indian troops to come to Iraq- Democracy Now! goes to India and to Pakistan and hosts a debate between journalists C. Raja Mohan, Praful Bidwai and M. Ziauddin.

Ariel Sharon begins his three-day state visit to India today. He is the first Israeli Prime Minister to ever visit the country.

Just hours before the visit, a Bhartiya Janata Party spokesperson in Delhi said, "If any country is making an effort to join the war against terrorism especially after September 11, we cannot ignore [Israel]."

Interestingly, Palestinian foreign minister Nabeel Shaath was in India a week ago and said that India must not forget its historical ties with the Palestinian struggle for independence.

Meanwhile, Pakistani papers have been talking about fears of an anti-Muslim Jewish-Hindu axis.

The New York Times reports that, "Israeli munitions have proved particularly valuable for India as it tries to bulk up its conventional defenses against its nuclear-armed neighbor, Pakistan. Israel has supplied India with surface-to-air missiles, avionics, sophisticated sensors to monitor cross-border traffic, remotely piloted drones and artillery. After Russia, Israel is India’s second largest supplier of arms.

India and Israel are currently negotiating the transfer of three Phalcon airborne early-warning radar, command, and control systems — after the United States lifted its objection this year to the sale. The Phalcon, long coveted by both India and China, is a long-range Israeli-made system that will be fitted onto Russian-built military transport planes.’

  • C. Raja Mohan, Strategic Affairs Editor of The Hindu and author of Crossing the Rubicon-The Shaping of India’s New Foreign Policy (New Delhi, Viking, 2003). Speaking from New Delhi.
  • M. Ziauddin, Resident Editor of The Dawn, Islamabad.
  • Praful Bidwai, former senior editor of _ The Times of India_. Bidwai is a freelance journalist and regular columnist for several leading newspapers in India. He is an associate editor of Security Dialogue, a member of the International Network of Engineers and Scientists against Proliferation and co-founder of the Movement in India for Nuclear Disarmament. His latest book, co-authored with Achin Vinaik and with an introduction by author and peace activist Arundhati Roy, is New Nukes: India, Pakistan and Global Nuclear Disarmament (Interlink 1999).

Recent Shows More


Creative Commons License The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.