The Coup of 08 Jan 2015 – The ‘Afghan Aftershock’ that Caused Tremors in South Asia
Posted on April 9th, 2015
By Sarojini Dutt
Reportedly hatching plans behind embassy walls, the US – Indian axis executed a major coup in South Asia when it dented China’s influence in the region with the defeat of the Rajapakse Presidency in Sri Lanka on 08 Jan 15.
The coup dramatically changed the geo political dynamics in the region forcing China and Pakistan to urgently review the status quo and to plan necessary measures to restore geo political balance in South Asia.
Analysts describe what happened on 08 Jan 15 as the ‘Afghan aftershock’ which jolted Sri Lanka’s geopolitical balance from its existing centre of gravity and which the US – Indian axis woolgather rode China out of Sri Lanka on a rail.
The aftershock in Colombo was caused by the major ‘quake’ in Kargil in 1999 that rocked the geo political tectonic plates of South Asia.
Kargil, these analysts say, was a masterstroke of US Machiavellianism. Overnight, India a frosty foe from the cold war days which had not signed the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty and which only months before had joined the exclusive Nuclear Club was metamorphosed into a warm and grateful ally of the US
In a neatly contrived ruse US CENTCOM Chief Anthony Zinni – in cahoots with Pakistan Army Chief Pervez Musharraf – brought India and Pakistan to the seeming edge of a nuclear confrontation. With, Pakistan dominating the mountain heights of Kargil, problems of high altitude acclimatisation plaguing India, Pakistan taking comfort in a military alliance with the US (the sole global power) and India militarily isolated globally and regionally the dice appeared loaded against India in the battle for Kargil.
That was to forget one Narendra Modi, a US point man in India, yet to be four times Chief Minister of Gujarat and 15th Prime Minister of India.
Contact was made and Modi the Pracharak, as reported in the Indian Telegraph of 21 Sep 14, was welcomed in Washington. He had no difficulty in convincing the US administration to pressurise the Pakistanis to withdraw from the commanding heights of Kargil.
Modi left his indelible stamp on HR 227 (House Resolution 227) which called for economic pressure to be applied on Pakistan in the event Pakistan did not comply.
The US congress almost unanimously passed the resolution. A blissfully ignorant Navaz Sharif was forced to eat humble pie. The geo political balance in the region was violently quaked off centre. Pakistan lost its position as the sole ally of US in the region.
Capitalising quickly on the gains of Kargil Robert Blake, the de facto US ambassador in India, engaged the Indians and crafted the landmark bilateral agreements between the two countries; the Agreements were signed in Washington on 18 July 2005. Analysts say that when Pakistan animadverted on the Agreements the US silenced Pakistan, pulling out the ‘A Q Khan’ card.
Of the several US – Indian agreements signed in 2005, it is in the ‘Security Agreement’ that the US resolves to establish India as a global security partner of the US.
US State department analyst Alan Kronstadt says that the aim of these Agreements is to assist India to become a major power. This is to be a part of the US grand strategy to counterbalance the rise of China as a major power.
Rajapakse the incumbent President who was unanimously selected by the governing party as their candidate for the 2015 Presidential election had (in 2009) the US/NATO leadership hightailing when they attempted to pressurise him to rescue the terrorists and keep intact the US/NATO beachhead that had been established with the CFA in 2002 and consolidated thereafter with the PTOMS in 2005.
Analysts argue that the rationale for US interference in Sri Lanka’s internal affairs is comprehendible. The US had hijacked the vehicle of Tamil Nationalism when they commandeered the LTTE from under the very noses of Delhi; this was abundantly clear when in 1985 India expelled the LTTE leadership of Prabhakaran, Balasingham, Satyendra and Chandrahasan from the country.
US imperialism had piggy backed on the LTTE to establish a beachhead in the North and East of the island and deviously gained suzerainty of this beachhead comprising 2/3rd of the island coastline, 1/3rd of the land mass and the adjacent sea; finances, ‘policing’ the land and the sea, planning and governance of the region were in their hands.
Paradoxically, the US had taken a page from Lenin in making its imperial war on Sri Lanka the island’s internal ethnic war.
Sri Lanka watchers say that it was clear to the Rajapakse government that the ultimate destination of that hijacked vehicle of Tamil Nationalism would be determined by the hijacker and not the hijacked.
These observers say that the Battle of Nandikadal was the culmination of a near thirty year war the US forces had waged on Sri Lanka, a proxy war; the US beachhead in Sri Lanka was smashed and the US backed fighters decimated.
The hijacked bogie of Tamil Nationalism was derailed; the US instrument through which it converted its imperial war on Sri Lanka to Sri Lanka’s internal ‘war’ was made dysfunctional.
In the run up to the Sri Lankan Presidential election of 2015, credible sources say that the US – Indian axis, strengthened by US point man Modi, concurred that the Rajapakse government had to be overthrown if the derailed hijacked bogey of Tamil Nationalism were to be put back on track.
When asked what was there for Modi’s India in the deal, these sources replied, “The US shook hands with Modi on the assurance that what Krishnaswamy Sundarji could not achieve with the IPKF, Modi would; and more.” The ‘more’ according to some eminent analysts would include the plantation areas, that would bring the land, the people, the entire originating sources of water in the island, the country’s hydro energy resources and the island’s economic bedrock of tea under de facto Delhi control. Queried an alarmed observer, “Can the remaining part of the country (often referred to inaccurately as the Sinhala areas) survive independently in these circumstances?”
In 1987 when the Indians invaded, (sorry, were “invited to”), Sri Lanka their plan that was ruined by the islanders was to clear the Northern and Eastern provinces of the Sinhalese and Muslims and thereafter eliminate the LTTE prior to installing Perumal the marionette. While de jure control of the North and the East would likely have been with Colombo the de facto control was to be ceded to Delhi. If the plan had succeeded the North and the East would have been one step closer to being severed from Sri Lanka and integrated with the Union of India
Senior Indian diplomat Melkulangara Bhadrakumar analysing the Sri Lankan Election in his piece ‘The Lankan transition resets Indian Ocean Politics’ says that what happened may not have the look of a classic ‘regime change’ like a ‘colour revolution’ as in Georgia or a coup as in Ukraine but that without doubt the US and UK had got involved and choreographed the election.
Bhadrakumar a specialist on South Asian affairs reports, “Politics do make strange bed fellows and the Anglo – American project (in Sri Lanka) probably drew confidence from that dictum. No doubt the new government will reset the compass of national and regional policies and its impact will be felt far and wide, since Sri Lanka happens to be one of the most coveted real estates in the geopolitics of the Indian Ocean. For the US, Sri Lanka figures as a potential lynchpin in its rebalance strategy in Asia.”
As the global security partner of the US, Modi’s India played a significant role in the Sri Lankan Presidential election; in Dec 2014, the RAW chief was booted out of Sri Lanka, an exit some red faced Indians dismissed as ‘routine’. A Reuters report on 17 Jan 15 pointedly alleges that RAW interference had contributed to Rajapakse’s defeat. Bhadrakumar ratifies Indian perception that Sri Lanka is within India’s legitimate ‘sphere of influence’.
The word on the street is that on the day prior to the Sri Lankan election the RAW chief was strategically moved into the Indian Base in the Maldives; that the axis of evil had drawn up several plans catering to varying contingencies and that the Sri Lankan cabal was made privy to a few of these plans; that this cabal enjoyed playing cloak and dagger, hedgehopping in the wee hours of the night between houses in Colombo 7, to do their bit parts in this ‘foreign production’; that there were massive voting irregularities in the North and the East; that the ‘foreign production’ was based on the notorious Afghan model of John Kerry used in the Presidential election of September 2014 to ensure that the new Afghan government would sign the Bilateral Security Agreement – Karzai had refused to sign it – that would prevent Afghanistan prosecuting US soldiers for the many war crimes committed there.
The objective of the ‘Afghan’ model was to subvert, the will of the people, the powers of the parliament and the country’s Constitution by installing in power the loser while stripping the winner of a large component of his effective power; the end result was then marketed by the US at various times as ‘Power Sharing’ or Unity Government or ‘National Government’.
The loser, in violation of the Constitution, was appointed ‘Prime Minister’ by Presidential Decree. Again by Presidential Decree, the President shed a great deal of his powers enshrined in the Constitution vouchsafed him by the people through the same sacred Constitution of the people.
The ‘Kerry’ plan first used in Afghanistan was dependent on two decisive factors for its success: Buying over the support of key political figures with massive financial inducements: Rigging the votes on an unprecedented scale in selected regions.
Constitutional experts are unanimous in their opinion that Presidential Decrees have to conform to the Constitution and cannot controvert it; these decrees cannot subvert democracy and the functions of the organs of state that are guaranteed by the Constitution. Paul Keating in his piece to the Guardian on 26 Sep 14 says that the power sharing deal has left many Afghans wondering ‘What is an election for?’
There have been violent protests in Afghanistan forcing the UN to conduct a one hundred percent audit of all the votes cast; the results of the audit have been suppressed by the UN at the request of the US and the loser who was made ‘Prime minister’ by Presidential decree.
As seething anger mounts in that country there is a shrill demand to challenge the Presidential Decrees in the Courts of Law and have them declared ‘null and void’.
There is also a growing turbulence that the matter of subverting the Constitution be investigated thoroughly by the law agencies at the highest levels and bring all those responsible for subverting the Constitution to justice. “It is tantamount to a military coup when the Constitution is subverted by a minority group of interested parties coming into ‘closed door’ non transparent agreements. The President leaves himself open to be impeached” said an indignant Rassoul, a Constitutional expert.
The consequences of the subversion of democracy in Afghanistan have been startling. If Batalanda invokes memories of mass political murder in Sri Lanka, Dasht – e – Leili was the site where US troops with Afghan warlord Rashid Dostrum tortured, shot and buried over 2000 Taliban prisoners of war who had surrendered. Award winning film maker Jamie Doran visited the site and made a documentary of the 2001 massacre ‘Convoy of death’. Calls for investigations have fallen on deaf ears; Bush prevented three investigations and Obama started one and suddenly put a cap on it. Calls to the UN for an International War Crimes Inquiry have not even had the courtesy of a response. After 14 years the vermin have resurrected. Rashid Dostrum is today the Vice President in the aberrated form of Franchise in Afghanistan.
The questions on the streets of Sri Lanka are also many: Were the axis forces standing by ‘off-shore’, to be deployed in Sri Lanka at short notice? Was the armed takeover of the Katunayake airport by the axis forces a part of any contingency plan? Had the axis forces planned to get quisling Sturmtruppen on the street to create a ‘Gaddafi’ type Libyan situation? Could there have been any Blue on Blue situation between Para military units and the military that would have actuated foreign intervention?
In those 45 days preceding the election, to distract the attention of the people from the menacing ‘US – Indian’ Tsunami’ that was roaring in the direction of the island nation, the Sri Lankan bourgeoisie – the Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim, Burgher and the local Kautskys – engaged in the classic ‘pick pocket’ diversion.
Aptly put by a venerable monk “It was the case of one group of pickpockets fingering another group and hollering ‘pickpocket’; a one mighty ‘pickpocket’ rumpus was created.”
While all eyes were riveted on the animated ‘pickpocket’ diversion, the deadly ‘US – Indian tsunami’ hit Sri Lanka catching the people unawares. Today the country is in the throes of that disaster.
On 08 Jan 15 US imperialism hit back with a vengeance turning tables on Rajapakse. With its faithful Gujarat aide – de – camp and the Sri Lankan bourgeoisie of all hues in tow, the US was successful in putting back on track the hijacked bogey of Tamil Nationalism, to enable the hijacked bogey to continue its role as a ‘transformer’ that converts US’s imperial war on the island to Sri Lanka’s internal ethnic ‘war’. This was almost to a month, 200 years ago when the Sri Lankan bourgeoisie signed off the country’s sovereignty and traitored the country’s leader to the British.
Bhadrakumar says that despite all the machinations of the Anglo American combine, Sirisena barely managed to scrape 51.28% of the votes; he comments “Paradoxically, it is the overwhelming Tamil support for Sirisena that ultimately proved the clincher.”
That would be to discount the Sri Lankan bourgeoisie, whatever their ethnicity, religion or party politics may be; the Sri Lankan bourgeoisie in the tradition of their forefathers opened the door for the imperialists to slink in. And the coup of 08 Jan 15 eased the imperialists into the country
The coup of 08 Jan 15 also kindled a vague notion of Gujarat Lebensraum in the sub continent. Strutting around in an attempt to establish an ‘Asian Monroe Doctrine’ the Viceroy from India marked his ‘sphere of influence’ in a manner which Gerald Durrell would have described as ‘using scent to mark territory’. Of the four countries Modi made winged visits to recently, only Sri Lanka does not have a military pact with India or an Indian military base.
For the first time since the ‘Parippu’ drop in the 1980s Indian aircraft and security were seen swarming all over the country side virtually usurping Sri Lanka’s sovereign role in providing security.
Providing training for selected persons to man the Jaffna airport and enabling RAW and military personnel with DPL passports to move in and out of Sri Lanka at will, analysts say that Modi has signaled intent: there are no barriers between the two countries, it is one country and entry to Sri Lanka through Jaffna will de facto be controlled by and from Delhi; there is a strong likelihood that people from the world over visiting Jaffna would do so via India, further distancing Colombo from Jaffna.
While Modi speaks of the 13th Amendment and beyond, Colombo maintains a deafening silence on the subject. With Wickramasinghe breaking protocol to meet Modi in Katunayake and walking deferentially a few feet behind the big man and with Maithripala again breaking protocol to bend over backwards to humour Modi in Polonnaruwa, it is no wonder that tongues are wagging that with Ranil and Maithripala prostrating themselves across the sea at the feet of Modi, the Adams bridge has been replaced by the Rama bridge with Modi walking all over them and Sri Lanka; and that if Chandrika is unhappy being left out it could be renamed Ramach bridge.
Commentators say that the situation is ominous and portends a threat to the sovereignty of the island. “The need at the moment” they say “is not clamouring to expand the scope of investigations of financial profligacy to the Kumaranatunge period, or to the Premadasa period or up to the Jayewardene period; the need of the hour is to demand a 100% audit of all the votes cast considering the massive voting fraud that took place primarily in the North and the East as is being angrily alleged, challenge the legitimacy of the controversial Presidential Decrees in a Court of Law, demand a police probe to investigate whether the circumstances that led to the controversial Decrees was a deliberate attempt to frustrate the sacred Constitution of the people and to ascertain in parliament the level of confidence enjoyed by the current Prime Minister.”
Political analysts perceive that at this vital moment of Sri Lanka’s history it is critical that all Sri Lankan proletariat – Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim, and Burgher – unite to defeat the US – Indian axis forces in this country.
In the meantime the one Sri Lankan the imperialists fear and who would stand up to them, defeat them if necessary and who could give positive leadership to the proletariat is out on a limb done in by the ‘Afghan Coup’ of the local bourgeoisie with imperialist planning and money.