Diplomacy is not donation

-Saurav Raj Pant

Nepal’s Foreign Ministry must have to clarify the differences in recent PR of bilateral meeting released by both Nepali & the US authorities about the confusion of ‘Indo-Pacific strategy and Indo-Pacific region’. Diplomacy is not donation. It’s done with Carrot and Stick. The Diplomat should see both Carrot and Stick sides.

By Saurav Raj Panta (24 December 2018) – These days, Kathmandu’s diplomacy is boiling. This boiling is the cause of the recent statement made by the US that, ‘Nepal is the part of the Indo-pacific strategy’ whereas Nepali side completely rejects any such agreement being made during recent bilateral meeting held in Washington. But, this disarray becomes even outpouring as the Press Release (PR) made by the US Embassy in Kathmandu and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kathmandu is different. According to the US Embassy in Kathmandu, “Nepal’s central role in a free, open, and prosperous Indo-Pacific; and global issues, including North Korea”, whereas PR made by Nepali foreign ministry’s, there hasn’t been any mention about the word ‘Indo-Pacific’.

In December 23th, 2018 Press Conference organized in MOFA, our FM Mr. Gyawali said that, Nepal doesn’t have global or regional strategic ambitions. All that was said during the meeting was that Nepal can play a role in the Indo-Pacific region.” He also added that, “Indo-Pacific region and Indo-Pacific strategy are two different things”.

Now, comes another tricky part, why in the US statement it mentions about North Korea? The Korean Peninsula is highly debated issues in International politics. Don’t US know differences about ‘Indo-Pacific Strategy’ & ‘Indo-Pacific region’? The country with around 800 military bases around the world doesn’t know about the simple difference between region and strategy is a bad joke. Why did it include North Korea and mentions about Nepal’s central role? There are many questions arises and one should read between the lines. The reading between the lines means that, US (with India) in Indo-Pacific strategy wants to include Nepal and try to cut-off China.  Inside India also, the effort is already in effect to make China as the ultimate fear factor in India; triggering Indian government to do counter-attack on China. In Nepal, creating India as the fear factor forcing India to act and if India acts against Nepal put China on the ground. In this way, the disturbed Asian region will be disadvantageous to make 21st century; an Asian century.

Technically, understanding there is China, India & Russia (CIR) led by China & US, Germany, France & UK (UGFU) led by the US as the core front runner in current world politics. Both these CIR & UGFU are in a race to make this 21st century as their own century. Based on several reports, this 21st century is the century of Asia. But, West is reluctant to accept this reality. So, West is engaging in the multiple fronts against China, India and also with Russia to create breakage in several ways whereas to destabilize west in own terms, China and Russia is engaging in terms of BRI and Oil politics. The conflict within CIR or UGFU creates a world a detente. Otherwise, strong UGFU means disturbance in Asia and its periphery and strong CIR means disturbance in Middle East & Western world.  How can this be proved?

Proof number 1:

When Turkey and India engaged with Iran for geopolitical interest fulfilling and oil buying respectively, there was successful attempt made to weak both Turkish Lira and Indian Rupee against US $ via increase in the price of oil in the month of October-November, 2018.

This weakening of Indian currency had increased oil price in India with nationwide protest. Due to pegging effect, weak Indian Rupee against US$ also had affected to become weak Nepali currency against US$.

This attempt to create tension in the Asia has a wider vision of creating breakage in CIR and ultimately retaining global power by UGFU which was created since Renaissance period.

Proof number 2:

In November, 2018 China and Russia looked new payment system to ditch US$——control in the global financial system means controlling the world.  According to Hoover Institute report, China is engaged in multiple fronts in disrupting the US———from cyber war, trade war, intellectual property rights, intellectual exchange programs, NGO etc.

Despite currency war against India and 2+2 dialogue meeting between US-India, India continued to buy weapons from Russia and oil from Iran. So, to avoid CATSA, India started trading with Iran on Indian currency. This is the attempt of the wider strategy of CIR in 21st trying to create breakage in UGFU alliance. Breakage in UGFU alliance means dominant CIR. Dominant CIR means century of Asia.

Way forward

This proof number 1 and 2 is just an example list. The list can be longer.  There is only one thing works in diplomacy i.e. is promoting and achieving vested interest of one’s country by hook or crook method. Nepal should understand that, religious and cultural diversity of vulnerable country is little boon and more curse if it is mishandled. This can be observed from the history of various countries of Asia and Africa where existing dominant culture and religion was forcefully made radicalized and moderate leading to never ending conflict. Externally, diplomacy is glamorous job with wearing neat and clean clothes, drinking matinee and travelling in luxurious cars and frequent foreign trips. But, on glamour posture there is ‘dark reality’ inside it. United Nations Offices in New York or Geneva has a charming effect but Madam and Sir, diplomat are assigned for specific missions by their country. Our diplomats should understand this and act accordingly in the best possible way to stop the CIR and UGFU factors for Nepal. There shouldn’t be any excuse for diplomats. To save country, even smaller and weaker nations can/have to play pivotal role. Example includes Estonia. It is now most cyber prepared country to counter foreign cyber hacking.

Understanding all these realities, Nepal’s Foreign Ministry must have to clarify the differences in recent PR of bilateral meeting released by both Nepali & the US authorities about the confusion of ‘Indo-Pacific strategy and Indo-Pacific region’. Diplomacy is not donation. It’s done with Carrot and Stick. The Diplomat should see both Carrot and Stick sides. Only considering Carrot sometimes proves deadliest. Unfortunately, we Nepali have a habit of observing only Carrot. Let’s change it.

  • Author is an IR analyst and affiliated with the US based Think Tank known as Nepal Matters for America

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