Put that question to one of the commies, and you’ll get an answer, sure: that they’re mobilising their party workforce for more puerile, idiotic protests against the Indo-US Naval Malabar exercises in the Arabian Sea, in which the US will field the nuke-powered USS Ronald Regan, the US Navy’s youngest Nimitz-class aircraft carrier. So more jobless Communist thugs of the kind that marauded through Nandigram, will now get free rides to Kochi or Goa to swill arrack and wave red flags at a warship that will be so far out at sea, that they won’t know what they’re looking for (in which case, they might just turn their angst at some hapless merchant vessel that may happen to be steaming through). The government didn’t listen to the CPIM about the Nimitz visit when the party was still part of the government. What in hell makes them think they’re going to get any attention at all, now that their hollow, waste-of-time, narrow rhetoric doesn’t even impact realpolitik anymore.
Not once have the Yechurys or Bardhans or Karats spoken out for the armed forces jawan — a substantially populous class. Not once have they said they’ll protest in the centre of town about the iniquities that the 6th Pay Commission has heaped upon the defence services, both tangibly and in terms of perception. Not once have they spoken out, with their same harsh frothing-in-the-mouth style about the idea that national security is far worse compromised by an unhappy and borderline mutinous guardian class, than a joint naval exercise that only helps the Navy obtain more operational experience on the seas.
A senior retired Naval officer, a favourite with the press, said to me recently that the CPIM’s stance on Indo-US exercises was an unequivocal insult to the armed forces themselves. His rationale was that by threatening to protest, the CPIM was implying that the armed forces know less than the Communists about what constitutes prudence, care and astuteness as far as defending the nation is concerned. He used some words for the Communists that I won’t reproduce here, but you get the drift.
As staunch critics of the Pay Commission’s recommendations that certain defence establishments be corporatised, the Communists have further inspired the deep suspicion and distrust of the armed forces. By controlling the ordnance factory and PSU unions, they get to say what they like against disinvestment, privatisation — concepts largely favourable to fighting men, especially when it comes to defence PSUs and ordnance factories, most of which which continue to perpetuate mediocrity by dodging prescriptions for genuine and sensible reform.
But we should stop looking to the Communists for anything anymore. Hopefully, they will never ever matter again.
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