Donald Trump was sworn-in as 45th President of the United States of America with all the pomp and show and also the typical American traditions that have been part of the Inauguration ceremonies since the times of George Washington in 1789. But the January 20, 2017 ceremony was different as it was marked with questions, will the new President will repair the polarized relations between communities in the diverse country , shifting away from his campaign days.
This is very crucial for the world. America still is the most powerful democracy and economy and dominates the world affairs, despite the mounting challenge by China . Its President is seen as the most powerful man who has bigger say in the global events and much of destiny of the world is shaped by his decision to act or otherwise. The most glaring example is Syria, a nation torn by civil war and a theatre of flexing of muscles by Russia, Turkey , Iran and several other nations. The American inaction brought the nation to the path of destruction under which it is reeling today.
Trump’ presidency beginning Friday will have great impact on South Asia. Some of the hotspots of the world are in this region. Afghanistan is far from being stabilized despite relentless campaign by the US and its allied forces for more than 15 years in fighting Taliban and Al-Qaeda. Both the deadly groups are there causing almost daily mayhem in Kabul and the rest of Afghanistan. American efforts have failed to succeed primarily because of its lack of understanding of the tribal harmony in the trouble-torn country , as also because of Pakistan’s uninterrupted interference in the affairs of Afghanistan and total support to the destabilizing forces by actively supporting the terror oriented suicide bombs . Taliban was created by Pakistan. This fact was admitted by former President of Pakistan Gen. Pervez Musharraf who ruled the country for almost nine years from 1999- 2008)
America of George Bush had coopted as a partner in war against terrorism after the 9/11 , in the hope that Pakistan’s geo-strategic location and its spy agency ISI’s deep involvement with Taliban. would help turn tables against the terror groups responsible for the worst terror attack on the American soil . But Pakistan proved to be unreliable ally . It worked both ways. It transferred American dollars to the terror groups used as foreign policy tool against India and Afghanistan .
America would have to watch this threat closely. President Barack Obama sent powerful message to Islamabad when he did not make even a single visit to Pakistan during his eight-year tenure. Instead, he had appointed Richard Holbrooke as a mediator for Afghanistan- Pakistan. Richard’s plea that Kashmir be made part of his assignment was rejected .
Donald Trump will have to see how he tackles these issues in South Asia. The Narendra Modi government should not draw any complacency from the campaign-day utterances of Donald Trump against Muslims and terrorists . Finally, he knows that he would be known the way he conducts himself as President . Kashmir is indeed an Achilles’ Heel of India . This fact should not be ignored. Modi would do well if he takes care of the nation’s problems himself instead of relying on the continuation of Obama-like friendship with Trump. That may not be sufficient . India has distanced a good fried in Russia . There are hardly any shoulders to bank upon. Trump is a businessman. He would look for furthering his country’s interests first , rather than obliging friends and run risk of failing his nation’s interests.