Nehru - Toward Freedom (1936).pdf

If war is to defend the status quo of imperialist

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If war is to defend the status quo of imperialist possessions of col onies and vested interests and privilege, then India can have nothing to do with it. If, however, the issue is democracy and world order based on democracy, then India is intensely interested in it. The Committee is convinced that the interests of Indian democracy do not conflict with 430
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the interests of British democracy or world democracy. But there is an inherent and ineradicable conflict between democracy for India, or else where, and imperialism and fascism. If Great Britain fights for the maintenance and extension of democracy, then she must necessarily end imperialism in her own possessions and establish full democracy in India, and the Indian people must have the right of self-determina tion to frame their own constitution through a Constituent Assembly without external interference, and must guide their own policy. A free and democratic India will gladly associate herself with other free na tions for mutual defense against aggression and for economic co-opera tion. She will work for the establishment of a real world order based on freedom and democracy, utilizing the world's knowledge and re sources for the progress and advancement of humanity. The crisis that has overtaken Europe is not of Europe only, but of humanity, and will not pass, like other crises or wars, leaving the essen tial structure of the present-day world intact. It is likely to refashion the world for good; for politically, socially, and economically this crisis is an inevitable consequence of the social and political conflicts and contradictions which have grown alarmingly since the last Great War, and it will not be finally resolved till these conflicts and contra dictions are removed and a new equilibrium established. That equi librium can be based only on the ending of the domination and exploitation of one country by another, and on the reorganization of economic relations on a juster basis for the common good of all. India is the crux of the problem, for India has been an outstanding example of modern imperialism, and no refashioning of the world can succeed which ignores this vital problem. With her vast resources she must play an important part in any scheme of world reorganization. But she can only do so as a free nation whose energies have been released to work for this great end. Freedom today is indivisible, and every at tempt to retain imperialist domination in any part of the world will lead inevitably to a fresh disaster. The Working Committee has noted that many rulers of Indian states have offered their services and resources, and expressed their desire to support the cause of democracy in Europe. If they must make their professions in favor of democracy abroad, the Committee sug gests that their first concern should be the introduction of democracy within their own states, in which today undiluted autocracy reigns.
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  • Fall '16
  • Alan Kolata

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