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- 11-11-2006, 08:05 PM #1
"Asian Union" Dam these guys are going fast!
We all know how the institutions of the European Union have changed the scene in Europe. After the devastation of the two world wars, and hundreds of years of struggle for the mastery of Europe, what began as a coal and steel community has culminated in an European Union, with even continent which was the most dangerous region of the world for 200 years, if we go back only to the Napoleonic invasions, has become the most stable part of the world, ready to play a stabilizing role in the rest of the world.
The mantle of instability and potential danger for the rest of the world has been taken over by another continent, Asia. Whether it is the Israeli- Palestinian conflict in West Asia, or the India-Pakistan confrontation in South Asia, or the Korean conundrum in the East, or more importantly, the Sino-Indian equation, involving one-third of the world’s population, it is Asia which is calling the shots for attention of policy makers and thinkers and those concerned about peace and stability in the world. The Afghanistan crisis was just the beginning.
Is it necessary for Asians to go the whole hog of experiencing a few devastating wars, which in the nuclear age could mean total destruction, before they embark on a path of creating an Asian Union on the pattern of the European Union? Does history teach us anything at all or is repetition inevitable? The answer to this may vary according to whether one believes that history is a circle or a line and whether one believes in the adage, "History repeats itself" or in the opposite one which says:" History never repeats itself."
Europe remained in a mess until the big powers of Europe continued to play games against each other, creating alliances aimed at each other. The scene only changed when the big powers, initially Germany, France and Italy, came together to cooperate instead of confronting each other. Benelux was thrown in for good measure. The six soon became 9, then 12, then 15, and now 13 more are waiting anxiously to join in. UK tried to keep out at various stages but had no choice but to join in and is now even contemplating joining the common currency.
There is a clear-cut lesson in this for Asians. Only when the big powers of Asia, China, India, Japan, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey come together will the scene change. Smaller sub - regional alliances can make only a limited impact or no impact at all, as illustrated by ASEAN and SAARC respectively. Same can be said of the Gulf Cooperation Council. ASEAN is experimenting with various other combinations like ASEAN + 1 or ASEAN + 2 or ASEAN + 3, but the real combination has yet to come. SAARC can never take off unless the India - China equation changes and when that happens it will take off in a jiffy. Similarly the issue of Islam cannot be resolved at the level of India and Pakistan. When the equations change at the all-Asian level that includes Iran and Saudi Arabia, then the India - Pakistan conundrum will be automatically solved. So the need is for the big powers of Asia, all 6, or any 2, 3, 4, or 5 to make a beginning. Other things will fall in place automatically.
Some skeptics may raise the bogey of the danger to industries of one from the other e.g. between India and China. Similar bogeys were raised when imports became freer under WTO regulations. So freer trade has to take place any way with or without an Asian Union. What Asian Union may provide is a mechanism for creating safeguards as happened in Europe when the less developed countries of South Europe joined or when the countries of the former Soviet block come in gradually. Let us not forget that till 1820, India and China were the dominant countries in the world. Fifty percent of the world’s output until 1600 was from India and China. As UN Development Reports bring out year after year, the gap between the rich and the poor is growing wider and wider. This can only be reduced or bridged if the poor come together.
Fifty years ago, Chou-en Lai and Jawaharlal Nehru enunciated the 5 principles (Panchsheel). As Li Peng said during his visit to India in January last year, this is "an evergreen tree born of oriental civilization". Those principles are basic and can be foundations of a new International order. But first they have to be implemented locally, in Asia, and closer home, between India and China. Li Peng also spoke of the role our ancestors, how Indian monks Kumarajiva and Bodhidharma went east and brought authentic Buddhist sutras to China and how Fa Hien and Huen Tsang traveled west and left precious records of ancient Indian history and culture. He rightly emphasized the need for our two largest developing countries to have good - neighborly and friendly relations, instead of seeking spheres of influence. The current Chinese Prime Minister, Jhu Rongji, expressed similar sentiments when he visited India recently.
The Japanese film "A Sea to Cross" (Tenpyo no Iraka) shows graphically how in the 8th century some Japanese monks crossed into China by sea at great risk and after loss of many lives, just to find monks who could come to Japan and teach them the authentic Buddhist precepts. The circle has came full round. Intellectuals from India and other countries of Asia have now to cross the airspace to Japan to find those who can help create an Asian Union, because Japan has reached a level of development which all of Asia needs.
Islam has become a major issue in world affairs in the wake of what happened on Sept. 11, 2001. The "clash of civilizations," if one prefers to call it that, has to first be resolved in Asia itself before the equilibrium can be transferred to the world at large. It is an axiom of science that an experiment is first carried out at a smaller scale; the results, if positive, are then transferred to a larger arena. Hence the need to bring in Saudi Arabia and Iran into this dialogue for an Asian Union. The presence of Turkey, with its comparatively more modern Islamic institutions and secular outlook will be of immense help in this regard. In fact the very talk of an Asian Union will lead to a dialogue between civilizations, so to say. There are extremist elements everywhere, but equally there are moderate silent majorities. This is why Iran has been changing. The silent majority in Saudi Arabia should be enabled to get into the mainstream before that country becomes another core issue like Afghanistan.
Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism, Taoism and Shintoism are all Asian religious. There is a certain unity in the diversity in them as there is a common Asian cultural ethos. Once the equilibrium born of that unity in diversity is implemented at the Asian level, it will be easy enough to do so at the world scale. If it cannot be done at the continental level, it definitely cannot be done at the inter - continental level. Therefore the sooner we begin talking about an Asian Union, the better it is for the whole world.
The coolness between different regions of Asia: Muslim West Asia, non -Muslim South Asia and Buddhist - oriented Mongoloid East Asia will turn into warmth once we start the dialogue for an Asian Union. There are several cold and semi - hot wars within sub regions of Asia, as between India and Pakistan, between Israel and Palestine, between Japan and Korea and between the two Koreas. These will subside once the dialogue for Asian Union begins. The fact that both UK and Ireland are members of the European Union has had a positive effect on the Northern Ireland conflict. Similarly, the fact that Greece is in the European Union and Turkey is an aspiring member of the European Union also has had a positive effect on the Cyprus problem, which could otherwise have taken a worse shape.
Today there is a rather negative image of "Asians" in Europe, America and Australia. When a riot or some such thing takes place, whether in UK, the European continent or USA, Bradford or California, involving Chinese, Indians, Pakistanis or Koreans, they are always referred to as "Asians," in a pejorative way. After the events of Sept. 11 there is a sub-category," Muslim Asians," who are in danger of becoming untouchables. Will this negative image remain forever? Not if there is an Asian Union. On the contrary, a positive image will emerge and Asians, even from small countries, will be able to walk tall, as do Europeans from even Luxembourg and Malta.
Cooperation at the Asian continental level is not antithetical to organizations at sub-regional level, or to cooperation at the global level. Regional and sub-regional cooperation can reinforce each other and the two together can be intermediaries to global cooperation. The problem of terrorism also has to be tackled at sub-regional, regional as well as global levels. The whole body has no healthy existence without healthy parts and parts are healthy only when the whole body is healthy.
Here are a few more links
http://www.ppionline.org/ppi_ci.cfm?knl ... tID=252629
http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/12/16/ ... owring.php
- 11-11-2006, 08:53 PM #2
This not a good thing!
- 11-11-2006, 10:31 PM #3
Greater East Asia Co-Properity Sphere
History works against this happening in Asia. Japan tried something similar to this 66 years ago. They named it the Greater East Asia Co-Properity Sphere. They may have pulled it off, if they enlisted other countries as partners, rather than slave colonies.
Japanese Prime Minister Matsuoka Yōsuke announced the idea of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere (referred to as "Co-Prosperity Sphere in this essay) in August 1940. However, the roots of the Co-Prosperity Sphere go back many years prior to its formal announcement. The Japanese envisioned the Co-Prosperity Sphere to be an autarkic bloc of Asian nations led by the Japanese and free of Western powers.
The idea of Japanese cultural superiority over other Asian races had been expounded as early as the late nineteenth century and steadily grew in intensity until the end of World War II. For example, the famous Japanese educator Fukuzawa Yukichi wrote "Japan's Mission in Asia" in 1882 to support the idea of Japanese imperialism and the "manifest destiny" of Japan to be the leader of Asia. In 1905, Japan became the first Asian country to defeat a Western power, namely Russia in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5, which bolstered Japan's confidence in its destiny to lead Asia.
Economic reasons played a large role in Japan's announcement of the Co-Prosperity Sphere in 1940. Japan required East Asian raw materials such as oil from the Dutch East Indies and rubber from Indochina in order to keep its manufacturing industry and military in China supplied. The U.S. embargo of oil and steel shipments to Japan and other restrictions on raw materials shipments by Western nations pushed the Japanese leaders to seek sources in Asian countries to ensure Japanese self-sufficiency. The other Asian countries in the Co-Prosperity Sphere also would provide Japan with export markets for its manufactured goods and with land for its surplus population.
Many Asian nations still distrust (hate) Japan. The economy of Japan is perhaps the third largest economic power. It would need to be in any Asian Union, but it's very doubtful ! IMO, Japan's international trading companies would resist this type of union. They are very powerful and work through out the world to promote trade. I imagine they would suspect an Asian Union would interfere with their trading practices.
- 11-12-2006, 12:45 AM #4
But Japan and Chima is run by the same guys that run our country!
We are there military.
We rebuilt there country just like we did Germany.
All of this was planned fro, the beginning
- 12-17-2006, 07:24 PM #5
I just want to let you guys know the link "toda.org" is the Soka Gakkai site.
The Soka Gakkai(AKA SGI) is Japanese cult which was founded by Daisaku Ikeda(Korean Japanese).
The Soka Gakkai is similar to the Korean cult Unification church.
This cult is powerful, sometimes Japanese activists who against the cult are found dead mysteriously.
Protest at Soka U
Soka Gakkai/SGI International Information Resource
Youtube SGI videos
By the way, what funny about the Greater East Asia Co-Properity Sphere is now China is taking this idea to rule East Asia.
- 12-28-2006, 11:18 PM #6the European Unionhas become the most stable part of the world, ready to play a stabilizing role in the rest of the world.Unemployment is not working. Deport illegal alien workers now!