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  • Category: Foreign Affairs

    Do intelligence agencies cum diplomatic nexus become the very problem they are created to resolve?

    In the context of Geo politcs, it is inevitable that each country develops complex networks of diplomatic and Intelligence institutions to deal with various external issues. Often the debate around them is limited even in Soverign Institutions of a Government like Parliament and Judiciary due to secrecy concerns. But in many cases, we see these networks create the very problem they are sent to resolve. They increase the mistrust between Governments and prolong enmity in many cases instead of developing ties. We even see instances like a Cold war, The great game east is nothing but friends made enemies due to fear psychosis created by the Intelligence - diplomacy nexus. What can we do about it?
  • #664552
    The aim of such diplomatic or intelligence agencies is to get the correct information in time to take remedial actions for any suspected offence by the involved parties. They are also used many times to mitigate the misunderstanding between the Governments. Unfortunately due to individual aspirations and ambitions sometimes these pivotal authorities deviate from their main tax and start influencing the top officials in some strange ways which are not conducive to the diplomatic environment. In such cases instead of solving the problem they exaggerate it. As the involved parties depend solely on the advice of these diplomats or intelligence officials many times confusion prevails which only deteriorates the situation further. The only solution in that case is to replace the erring officials as quickly as possible and assign them some less important work.
    Knowledge is power.

  • #664553
    It is very important to have good foreign policy. There man trade policies, bilateral issues between the Countries which are mainly dependent on the diplomatic relationships. Due to the strained diplomatic relationship people of the Country have to pay the price.

    Presently India has maintained good diplomatic relationship with majority of the Countries. Once China was considered as dead enemy of India. But now the diplomatic relationship has improved drastically. I am sure the credit should go to Mr. Narendra Modi for his efforts in extending his hands of friendship with other Countries.

    The intelligence agencies also pay vital role in advising the Government. They provide intelligence inputs to the Government in preparing the foreign policy of the Country.

    "If you don't understand my silence, you will not understand my words"

  • #664555
    Intelligence and diplomacy do not only create enmity. Diplomacy and intelligence gathering also help in a positive manner. I don't want to elaborate it further except saying that the bureaucracy and intelligence gathering (in simple term, spying) also played a very crucial role in the dismantling of the Berlin wall in 1991.

    The author's comment is a popular notion but is not fully correct.

    "If you are killed in action, you go to Heaven. If you win, you rule this Earth (as beautiful as Heaven). That is why, O son of Kunti, take a firm resolve and fight!"-- Shrimad Bhagwad Gita

  • #664558
    Many a times, it is a case of the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing. In the simplest of terms, a nation and the world need some degree of order and policies in place for the establishment to function with ease and ensure that rights, safety and freedom are safegaurded.

    To ensure smooth functioning and interaction between departments within one nation and departments of various nations, we have well established agencies for a particular (or a group of) issue or aspect of society.

    Unfortunately, these organisation are so wrapped up in their own world that they forget the very reason for their existence. Apart from this politics, safeguarding one's own turf or job often takes a higher priority over genuine issues. Also funding issues, inability to adapt with changing geo-political equations also adversely affect the functioning of agencies. As far as nexus is considered, yes it happens, at insecure times, at times when agencies have to save their own future.

    What we need is a proactive attitude of the people at the highest level to look into such nexus within a country or between nations. This may not be easy but with a firm hand and collective inputs of experts in the respective fields, governments can formulate or introduce changes or amendments to re-align/re-shuffle the ailing departments and close the loopholes that promotes the nexus.

  • #664614
    At this juncture of debate it is pertinent for me to give my view of this diplomatic problem.
    Since ancient times we have fought for Territory, Trade imbalances, cultural differences, faith and Ideological considerations. And also friends and enemies remain so for longer period unless a change in equation happens abruptly. But since last 200 years with the evolution of separate diplomatic studies and professionals and relevant personal we find enmity for virtual reasons. It is not that diplomats where not present in ancient times. But the diplomats were also part of Governance systems in their country so that they are able to understand what their country needs and framed policies as such.
    Let us take few examples.
    1st Afghan war 1839-42.
    British India spent nearly 15 million pounds to wage war in Afghanistan because of a fictions threat of Russia which never was there. 40,000 troops perished and Lakhs of Afghan people for no purpose. This was a time when Bengal was crying under famine with deaths. Neither British nor Indians nor Russians or Afghans gained anything from it.
    Cold War 1945-Present.
    The erstwhile allies who fought hand in hand in 2nd World War with no territorial disputes or trade dispute bought into a complex war where no bullet was fired directly but devastated the whole world and changed Geo Politics with full of mistrust. Russians fell in 1991, US virtual retreat from Afghanistan, Numerous troops lost. These two powers had the ability to bring millions out of poverty if had good diplomatic relationship but failed.
    China India rivalry, Russo Chinese split and even Indo Pak rivalry to a large extent is revolved around debates of realism. neo liberalism which are foreign policy terms. The diplomats live a separate world in themselves.
    The problem is real
    The worst was in 2016 India was importing lakhs tonnes of pulses through Government to Government channels heavily influenced by diplomatic cables when domestic production was 3 year high. Do diplomats go in tandem with domestic policy ?
    In addition to the personal ambitions responsible for the problem as pointed by Umesh I think the problem is systemic as said by Natarajan. The suggestion given by respective members is also on the right path.
    The problem is what type of Institutions we can build for the solutions suggested by them.

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