What Did Roemer Achieve as U.S. Ambassador?

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by SHASH2K2, Apr 29, 2011.

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was Roemer a successful USA ambassador?

  1. yes

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  2. no

    3 vote(s)
    100.0%
  3. cant say

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  1. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    The news came on the same day as Indian officials said U.S. companies had been shut out of one of the biggest Indian defense deals in years: The purchase of 126 fighter jets worth some $10 billion.

    The timing may be coincidental — Mr. Roemer in his resignation statement said he was resigning for “personal, professional and family considerations” and said nothing of the fighter contract – but is nonetheless significant. For while the U.S. has tried mightily during his two-year tenure to alter the economic dynamic between India and the U.S., there is little to show for it.

    Most significantly, the civilian nuclear energy deal that was supposed to be the cornerstone on which the new strategic partnership between the U.S. and India was built has crumbled. Despite persistent efforts, neither Mr. Roemer or U.S. industry has been able to make the pact operational after India’s parliament passed a law that imposed liability on equipment suppliers, something unacceptable to U.S. companies. After the nuclear disaster in Japan, it is hard to see how this deal will become any more significant than the paper it is written on anytime soon, even though India remains committed to expanding nuclear power.

    Mr. Roemer and other U.S. officials tried hard to portray the deal as a breakthrough nonetheless that set the stage for a much wider range of economic cooperation between the world’s two largest democracies. And, to Mr. Roemer’s credit, he never stopped trying: New Delhi has been inundated with State and Commerce Department officials hawking American initiatives.

    There have been some successes, as the U.S. embassy noted in its release announcing Mr. Roemer’s resignation: The sale of C130J aircraft and the pending sale of C-17 aircraft. But the fundamentals of the economic relationship haven’t changed. President Barack Obama has continued to stoke the American public’s negative perception of India as a country that sucks away American jobs. And India hasn’t passed any meaningful reforms that open its market in a way that would add substance to all the happy talk about a U.S.-India strategic partnership. This is a disappointing result given how much talk was dedicated to it in the last two years.

    In the end, Mr. Roemer’s legacy in India may come down to two of the areas of expertise he brought into the job. He is clearly a politician of great ability, bringing to the ambassador’s job the kind of reach-out-and-touch-somebody approach that had been lacking in the post. At conferences, he would make his speech and then wade into the crowd, microphone in hand, to answer questions. There didn’t appear to be a square foot of India where he hadn’t traveled to shake hands and promote the soft side of American diplomacy.

    In his statement, he noted his extensive touring, “whether I was playing basketball with Muslim girls in Lucknow, seeing the majestic tiger in Ranthambore, or observing the ‘aarti’ on the banks of the mighty Ganga in Varanasi.” The U.S. embassy in New Delhi declined to make Mr. Roemer available for an interview.

    Mr. Roemer also was well-suited to the job because of his national security experience, having served on the 9/11 Commission that investigated the 2001 U.S. terrorist attacks. He seized on the opening thrust on both countries by the Mumbai attacks in 2008 to meaningfully expand security ties between the two nations with a counterterrorism cooperation initiative.

    There were major areas of friction, particularly regarding India’s request for access to Mumbai plotter David Coleman Headley. But India ultimately reached Headley.And the bigger picture is that coordination between the two nations’ security establishments has never been stronger. And India and Pakistan are talking, which the U.S. has taken pains not to be seen to be encouraging but which some give it credit for helping along nonetheless.

    S. Chandrasekharan, director of New Delhi-based South Asia Analysis Group, said that during Mr. Roemer’s tenure there have been “more ups than downs,” citing the decrease in anti-American sentiments in the Indian public and the resumption of the India-Pakistan dialogue. “He mostly worked quietly and was accessible to all,” Mr. Chandrasekharan said.

    The big question now is whether the visit to India by Mr. Obama in November marks a high point in India-U.S. relations or is genuinely the beginning of the defining partnership of the 21st century that the U.S. wants.

    Mr. Roemer’s successor may not be in control of the answer given the big geopolitical winds that are blowing through the region. In part thanks to Mr. Roemer’s efforts – he was involved in regional as well as national security initiatives — India has been willing largely to go along with American assurances about the wisdom of its strategy in Afghanistan.

    But with the endgame for the Afghan war already underway and Pakistan already aggressively pressing its own agenda, the risk now is that India will see that its interests are not being fully represented by its biggest western ally. Some in New Delhi already are chattering about how India has given up too much by toeing the American line and the next few years may see that friction come to the fore as the future of Afghanistan – and the region – is decided.
     
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  3. hit&run

    hit&run Elite Member Elite Member

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    10s of American ambassadors have come and gone without being even known by anyone in India. Why this Ambassador has to be seen if successful or not.
     
  4. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    Why are you so cynical? I'm sure our ambassadors have gone un noticed on the same grounds in US.
    This is not to glorify him. Just give a point if you have (+ or -), end of the story.
    Ambassador need not be public popular like Satya Sai or Asaram bapu.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2011
  5. hit&run

    hit&run Elite Member Elite Member

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    Are you talking to me? If yes then you should mind your words before going personal. You can not dictate others to rate someone +ve or -ve.
    The timing and subject of above article is nothing but an invention of some fallout mongering author since American jets have been rejected. Even if for sake of criticizing me you wants to tell me that his tenure is like any other unknown Indian diplomat in USA then you must comprehend my post again. This is what i was trying to say.

    Regards.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2011
  6. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    I'm not being personal. I didn't intend to. If still I have crossed a line then I'm sorry.
    And I'm not telling you to do anything (see below), so calm down.
    Let me sum it up - If you don't think something is worth posting, then you may abstain from posting. If others have something to add, they may.
    It goes both ways, I will not say why you or anyone else should post and you will not say why I or anyone else shouldn't.

    Which is exactly what I'm saying. Its just the matter of a trivial opinion, nothing here to have a heated argument.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2011

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