“The war in Afghanistan is doomed to fail in the long run and the U.S. [United States] is not invincible,” said Swedish Leftist intellectual and writer Jan Myrdal, during a lecture at St Xavier’s College, near Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, on Saturday.
The son of Nobel laureates Gunnar and Alva Myrdal, the 83-year-old writer was in Mumbai to deliver the 2nd Anuradha Ghandy Memorial lecture titled ‘Will the U.S. meet its Waterloo in Iraq and Afghanistan?’
“It is a war against people I know, love and respect. The anger is so strong I can taste the blood in my mouth when I see the images on the television,” said Myrdal.
Acknowledging that India couldn’t ignore the war because of its proximity to West Asia he said: “It is better for India not to get its fingers into this blaze.”
Myrdal has lived in West Asia, China and India and has been a long-time critic of America’s involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq. “The only good foreign soldier in Afghanistan is a dead one,” he said.
Myrdal spoke of how imperialistic powers — whether the U.S. now or England in the past — prosper through divide and rule, leaving behind tragic consequences. “The U.S. is developing Shia-Sunni contradictions in Iraq to secure its own rule,” he said.
Myrdal also pointed out that the U.S. was highly divided and Obama was being pulled in several directions, unlike Roosevelt who was a “stronger” leader.
“Things will get worse if one day the U.S. and its allies get involved in a war in Iran,” said Myrdal. “Blair mentioned Iran 58 times in his speech last week. Another war is a looming threat.”
Myrdal said common people have the power to change the course of history by opposing the war.