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Thread: India-US diplomat row escalates.

  1. #11
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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    Quote Originally Posted by Montecresto View Post
    Apparently we're doing a good job of pissing off the World lately.
    Thats OK...at least we have a solid lock on that whole Syria thing...

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    Quote Originally Posted by VanceMack View Post
    Thats OK...at least we have a solid lock on that whole Syria thing...
    Yeah, I feel better now that you mention that.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    Quote Originally Posted by Montecresto View Post
    Yeah, I feel better now that you mention that.
    I know. Remember when it was so important we were literally on the brink of military intervention there?

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    From Reuters:

    Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara defended the treatment and questioned why there wasn't as much sympathy for the housekeeper. He said it was standard practice for any defendant to go through a full search, "rich or poor, American or not".

    India says U.S. must drop case against diplomat to defuse row | Reuters

    Several points:

    1. Public sympathies are wholly irrelevant to the case.

    2. Evidence and facts, not public sympathy, determine the credibility of charges and whether a conviction is obtained.

    3. The allegations made against the Indian diplomat have nothing to do with narcotics smuggling and there was no basis for a strip search and possible cavity search. Appeals to "standard practice" don't change that. With diplomats, nations have to exercise extra caution to avoid creating larger problems beyond case-related legal issues.

    4. Despite the allegations, the facts in this case have yet to be examined. Prior to this case, the diplomat in question had filed complaints in New York and New Delhi concerning the housekeeper's possibly extorting her. All of this will need to be examined before one knows whether the allegations in question are credible. That's, of course, a separate issue from the reported mistreatment of the diplomat.

    5. The case was mishandled and in a fashion that could only have created a diplomatic issue and tit-for-tat retaliation.

    In short, I don't think the U.S. Attorney's posturing is constructive nor is it consistent with what is supposed to be a focus on evidence in the U.S. legal system. If anything, it risks further inflaming U.S.-India tensions and it makes it more difficult to find an impartial jury should the case go to trial. Given recent news reports about the housekeeper's possibly having tried to engage in extortion against the diplomat with the diplomat having filed complaints both in New York and New Delhi well prior to her arrest, along with the growing bilateral strains, odds are increasing that the U.S. Government will move to quash the case.

    As for the allegations against the diplomat, I reserve judgment. Until the evidence is made available and examined, one won't know whether the case was credible.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    This whole thing is a farce, as are all of these "diplomatic incidents." My fix for it is very simple..... Throw the Indian delegation out of the US and shut down their embassy. Close the US Embassy in Dehli. Force ALL foreign diplomats in the United States (as well as all US politicians) to follow the exact same laws every US Citizen is expected to obey.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    India is saying (for what it's worth) that the house keeper was being treated just as she would if she were in India, that being pretty standard procedure there. So they assert that as they overlook diplomats at the US embassy in India who bring in same sex lovers, (which isn't lawful there) that we should have afforded them equal treatment.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    It has now been 10 days since the story first made headlines in the U.S. At this point in time, one still does not know the credibility of the allegations against the Indian diplomat, despite an early burst of bluster by the U.S. Attorney who seems keen on prosecuting the case. At the same time, the reaility has not changed that any such charges--and the credibility remains uncertain--were not of a nature to justify a strip search. None of the allegations have anything remotely to do with smuggling. No strip search should have been performed.

    In the meantime, almost in an eerie repeat of a policy that amounted to the "Great Hesitation" in Egypt that has undermined U.S.-Egypt bilateral relations, the U.S. has yet to adopt a coherent policy response concerning the diplomat. As a response, India is poised to take additional measures according to Reuters:

    India has sought details about staff in American schools in the country for possible tax violations and revoked ID cards of U.S. consular officials and their families, retaliatory steps for the arrest of an Indian diplomat in New York...

    In a new twist, India now argues that Khobragade was accredited to the United Nations at the time of her detention, giving her immunity from arrest.


    India seeks possible U.S. tax violations as stand hardens in diplomat row | Reuters

    In short, there has been ample time for the U.S. Attorney to move ahead if the allegations are credible. Nothing further has happened as far as assessing the credibility of the allegations in recent days.

    More importantly, the U.S. Department of State has had ample opportunity to squash the charges and, given the lack of effort to even assess the credibility of the allegations and a strip search that was wholly unnecessary and had nothing to do with the allegations, I believe that is the only proper response at this time. If, as part of a resolution, the U.S. obtains India's agreement to drop its investigation against the maid, that's not a big deal.

    The India-U.S. bilateral relationship is strategically important. That importance will likely grow in maintaining a stable balance of power what could become a largely two-power-dominated Asia in coming years. Hesitation only further inflames tensions and reduces the vitality of the relationship.

    Finally, I have no issues with India's desire for reciprocity as it relates to diplomatic privileges. Reciprocity is a staple currency of diplomacy. It is the substance that allows for the pursuit of mutual benefit in agreements and asking for reciprocity vis-a-vis one's diplomats is not unreasonable.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    From Al-Jazeera:

    Amid a relentless Indian diplomatic offensive, the United States has started an internal review of the circumstances that led to the arrest of New Delhi diplomat Devyani Khobragade.

    The move is being interpreted as an acknowledgement by the US that there was a judgemental error in handling the Khobragade case. Further, the review is under process round –the-clock with a view to resolving it as soon as possible, reports said.


    US acts to defuse diplomatic row with India - News - Al Jazeera English

    I strongly welcome this badly delayed step. To date, no credible evidence has been furnished that the Indian diplomat committed any wrong, much less was involved in any offence that warranted a strip search. More than ample time has been available to examine the credibility of the allegations. To date, no credible evidence has been revealed to substantiate the allegations despite the gravity of those allegations and the important U.S. interests involved. That outcome increasingly suggests overreach in which sweeping allegations were made far beyond what the available evidence supported.

    Given that gap and the time that has been available to reconcile the allegations with the evicence, I believe all the charges should be dropped and without condition. Moreover, given the damage that has been done to date and the risks to the bilateral U.S.-India relationship that were needlessly created, those responsible for the strip search over allegations that clearly were non-germane to such searches should be disciplined if the ongoing review finds that the strip search was wrongful. Finally, the U.S. Attorney who attacked the diplomat's character in his press conference should be required to apologize. His only proper role was to lay out the charges involved and evidence, but only if the evidence were sufficient and credible and, the odds increasingly appear that is was not.

    In the end, this has now become a multi-faceted case. The first aspect deals with clearing the diplomat from what increasingly appears to have been baseless allegations. That should be done swiftly. The second deals with disciplining actors who may have gone to excess, risking material damage to important U.S. interests. Any disciplinary action should rest objectively upon the findings of the review, not sentimentalities. The third deals with a Prosecutor who chose to go before the media, when it increasingly appears the evidence did not justify charges, much less a press appearance.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    Quote Originally Posted by donsutherland1 View Post
    If the visa fraud allegations are the sole basis for her being charged, a cavity search should not have been performed. Such a search was inconsistent with the allegations at hand and not germane to the legal issues involved. We don't know if those allegations are accurate, as the individual who made the claim has since "disappeared" according to some news sources and we don't know if payments were made in cash or by some method that could substantiate them.

    IMO, the better procedure would have been:

    1. Notify the Indian government of the allegations.
    2. Ask the Indian government to withdraw her or allow her to be charged. The latter would essentially be a request for a waiver of immunity under the Vienna Convention.
    3. If a waiver were granted, proceed with a legal case by asking her to appear in court.

    This case was handled badly. I'm not at all surprised by the retaliation that has occurred. Indeed, given some of high profile abuses of women that have occurred in India (gang rapes, etc.), the Indian government had to act decisively when one of its women was allegedly mistreated. In other words, there was a 100% probability of retaliation and a fairly high probability that the retaliation would be more than proportionate.

    To avoid further damage, the U.S. should terminate the case and ask her to leave the country. India would almost certainly respond by expelling a U.S. diplomat at her level (or several lower-ranking ones). However, that would be the end of the matter.
    I think authorities asume everybody has drugs on them.

    I think that is how they are going to justify the body cavity search.

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    Re: India-US diplomat row escalates.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mason66 View Post
    I think authorities asume everybody has drugs on them.

    I think that is how they are going to justify the body cavity search.
    When one is dealing with a diplomat and circumstances that could create an international incident, one can't blindly assume. If the review finds that the strip search was not warranted, those who administered it should properly be held accountable. Objective evidence toward that end should determine whether or not disciplinary action is taken, be it reprimands or some other form.

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