The Importance of American Elections

I have been watching the happenings in the US election with some interest. And at the same time I keep wondering why there is not so much interest in India about this election.

What most people dont realize is that the US election is sometimes more important to every Indian than, say, the way assembly elections in Maharashtra is important to us in Delhi. And look at the difference in media coverage!

The actions of the US determines how many innocent men, women and children die in Iraq, Afganistan, Palestine, Kashmir, etc. You might call this a stretch of imagination, but think about it this way - the fate of all the children in Iraq who died last week in the continuing fight there, was decided by the decision of a large section of Americans to vote for George Bush. (And everybody knows by now, the fight in Iraq was for anything but USA’s national security interest, leave aside the morality of preemptive attacks). Ofcourse, I dont think most of these Americans would have thought things would turn this bad in the hands of their elected representative. But this blog of mine is not about what Bush did wrong, but rather it is more about how the leadership issue of a country in this world, affects so many people outside that country, in such a significant way.

The actions of the US in the middle-east (and relatively speaking, the inaction in Africa) affects oil prices in India and rest of the world. It is this increase of oil prices recently which have increased costs all around in India in the past few months. In other words, our government’s incompetence didnt cause the latest round of inflation. But the action of Americans in choosing a certain American president did that.

Again, this blog is not trying to be anti-Bush. If anything, from India’s point of view, it would probably be better to have a status quo in the current US-India relationships. Kerry is too much of an unknown factor when it comes to Indo-US relationships, and in these things it is always better to have a known status-quo. And also, we Indians no longer believe that USA can stop being double-faced with regards to relations between them and Pakistan and India.

BTW, you should really check out this amusing site -, which claims that voting Bush back will cause compulsory Army draft to be implemented on hapless young Americans.

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