Indian Government Escalates Civil War Against Maoists

The Indian government is escalating its use of military, paramilitary, and informal forces against Maoists - which is tantamount to a civil war in my opinion.  There are 100,000 or more forces that are now going to be engaged.  For those who are unaware, there are large parts of the territory of India in places like Chattisgarh and many mining areas.  Al Jazeera's Inside Story brought together three academic/analytical experts to offer a very interesting and informative discussion and debate among several experts from a variety of standpoints on questions of violence, development, poverty, and social injustice in this context.  It runs about 24 minutes.

That the Indian government is working with the U.S. government on 'counter-terrorism' is not a good sign, nor is the attention of the Indian government on Maoists through force rather than promoting social cohesion or secularism or anti-poverty measures.


By: on 3 Oct 2009


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Additional resources on the

Additional resources on the offensive of the Indian State:

(1) Bastar: The Real Divide behind the Impending Dirty War
(2) The situation in Dantewada, Chhattisgarh today
(3) Arundhati Roy on DemocracyNow!
(4) Weapons of Mass Desperation [Tehelka]

Is armed struggle against the

Is armed struggle against the state (in this case also using child soldiers) acceptable to you?

What specific details do you have about India and the U.S. working together on counter-terrorism? Why is it not a good thing?

Also, if it's civil war in your opinion, then it's misleading to readers to state so in the title of the article, which presents as if it were fact.  It's not.

Whether or not armed struggle

Whether or not armed struggle is acceptable varies by the specifics of the situation.  Almost always there is a better solution, but almost always, there are reasons for why a situation has descended into violence (on more than one side).  I don't distinguish ethically between organised armed struggle by a state actor and a non-state actor - what I am more concerned with are the effects on people, politics, and culture, which is why I find this escalation frightening and possibly thickheaded.

I am working on getting details to U.S. India collaboration on the civil war, or whatever else you want to call it (I'm not that interested in arguing semantics at this point, though I may be later).  What I have heard right now is that the U.S. is supplying or providing assistance with aerial surveillance.  Who knows what else is going on.

Why is it not a good thing?  Look at Israel/Palestine and Sri Lanka or Afghanistan/Pakistan and tell me that U.S. assistance - whether direct or indirect - for one or both sides in a conflict is a good thing.  The U.S. operates by its own motives without regard for what is right or what is humane - and often, as in this case, the more powerful actor.

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