Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Is Gandhi's Non-Violence applicable to tackling terrorsim?

I think Gandhi is often misunderstood about his "means vs. end" approach. I've been trying to find out what's the background of his apporach and from where he would have got. After reading lot of books by him/on him by Indian/foreign authors I understand that his ideas were influneced by Tolstoy and Indian philosophies - mainly Krishnaism - that's what I call the management strategies of Krishna as mentioned in Geeta. Perhaps the first use of Krishnasim was by Chanakya and his Arthashastra remains one of the most modern and practical book on management and finance. Gandhi's apporach was just the best management tactic that could solve the particular problem of unifying India and bring an end to British Rule. He has used mainly the "Saam" apporach of "Saam-Daam-Dand-Bhed" strategies propounded by Krishna. I've recently read Arthashahtra and it's just too good.... It's relevant the most in today's world in dealing with corporates and also managing countries. Using Dand & Bhed are also neccessary at times.

Chanakya used to first use force on his oppnents in the battles and then when the opponent used to become weak and victory was imminent he used to convert the minds of his oppoent and bring them to his side. That's what Ashoka also used after kalinga war and his empire was as big Alexanders - and much much more prosperous than Alexanders - because he never dominated his enemies - he changed the hearts of his enemies and that ensured uninterrupted harvest and trade and business!! That's not exactly what all emperors did.

Gandhi knew that with force he can't weaken the Britishers. He did strikes and non coperation. And when the British were becoming weak he showed benevolence by asking Indians to fight against Hitler - exactly same as what Chanakya taught us...

Gandhi could control genocides by personally going to the spot of action and things used to come under control just in minutes!! There's a difference between the people of 40s and the Jihadists today (or for that mater of fact even Hitler). Then they used to listen but do you think now the Jihadists would listen to Gandhi. He himself wanted Indians to fight against Hitler because he knew that Hitler won't be contained with the "Saam" style of management. Non Violence is just an extension of "Sam" style and he himself used "Dand" for Hitler. He would have done the same thing now also - terrorism has to be tackled at any cost. Innocent people were killed in the Kurukshetra war also and Arjun had also asked the same questions that people ask now. Krishna's answer was - "if for a greater cause of 'universal' truth, in which you believe, you have to kill your mother, brother, friends - go ahead and do that....". But that should be aimed at solving the problem. You can't go on killing which won't solve the problem. That's the difference between a Jihadist or a Tiger (refering to LTTEs) approach and being harsh on terrorism by Govt. The Jihadists are supposedly fighting for liberating Muslims from the dominance of the non-Muslims world-wide and the Tigers to get the rights for Tamil speaking people in Sri lanka. Is the problem in Palestine getting solved by Hamas. Is the problem in Kashmir getting solved by Lashkar-e-Toiba? Does anyone think that LTTE can really solve the problems of the Tamils in Sri lanka by just terrorism? So what are the Jihadists/Tigers/Naxals achieving? Absolutely nothing. On the contrary the government just has no option than to take to arms to contain these acts of terrorism. The terrorists could have surely used the non-violent apporach to attain much greater goals, but the government can't expect for a change of minds because the terrorists have already lost the normalcy of their minds and they can't think rationally any more.

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