Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pragmatic to retain our ingrained 'apolitical ethos'

Ref: Political Action should be central to ESM Agenda
Dear Bhimmy,
Delighted to reconnect after so long. Am impressed with your cerebral 'cut & thrust' and scholarly contributions. Nostalgic indeed of the ancient 'spirited' sessions that perhaps 'seeded' the creative faculties!
Since you have discerned a spark of 'strategy' in my earlier post and advanced a refreshing conceptual matrix for developing it, I am tempted to share the Att brief, arrogantly headed Smart Strategy.
The essential congruence between the two 'thought-processes' should be loudly visible to your sharp mind.
Had 'lightly' shared it with many of the Core Gp of the IESM, last year. Few comprehended/ agreed with it or saw any relevant 'value' in it. That is not surprising as the WIP is/ has been visibly (sometimes illusive!) riding a high wave? Besides, strong leaders have to be somewhat 'fixated'(so that revolutions can follow to get rid of them - in Service, we retire the B's).
I also believe that everything in life happens when its time comes- bet you never knew of my real 'spiritual' side!
Should you see any merit in the 'concept model' thread, as an extension of your inclinations, feel free to refine and sell- won't claim any IPR (only share of profits)!
Have just seen (this morning's) RMS. Your conceptually- cogent salvo on desirable 'politicisation' for greater effect is impressive.
In the given context, I would consider it a 'dangerous' direction to follow, literally. There is a 'political' and a 'Political' arena? The latter is a dirty quagmire (unlike your adopted land, where it is a part of citizens ideological identity). And the former-political- is a 'universal' reality; in as much as all human- activity is power- based i.e. fundamentally political.
Veterans' cause, I believe would be better served by aligning 'selectively' (issue-based); yet retaining our ingrained 'apolitical ethos'- may be opportunistic but is pragmatic. Most Veterans' DNA abhors Politics and many will roll off the Wagon at seeing an overt alignment. And that should explain my (majority view, hopefully) 'fetish' for the Indian Military's (includes Veterans) ethos of disciplined, orderly, mature democratic dissent vis a vis a aggressive/ abusive revolutionary character of discourse. Anything gross or crude is repugnant, not only to retired Generals, but to most Indians sensibility. A few of the mails/ views have tended to transcend the red-line: hence the 'cautionary'; which you perceived as castrating the IESM?
I would forsake the Mov if it lost this element of its essential character and so would most right thinking members. And a movement without 'momentum of followers' would be a joke?? Though it could still exist as a political entity eg Maoists/ extremists/ terrorists of some hue or the other.
Lots of love to you both.
Warmest regards,
Lt Gen YN Sharma, Former Army Commander

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