Wikileaks: Leaked cables on Nepal dwell on Maoists‚ Indo-Nepal ties
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 16, 2011
The new leak includes four cables sent by the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu from 2003 to 2007, with three of them centring on the Maoists who launched an armed insurgency in the country. All the cables were categorised as secret and addressed to U.S. Secretary of State.
Sent on September 25, 2003, the first missive was prepared by the then Ambassador, Michael E. Malinowski, and dwelt on the Nepal-India bilateral security cooperation in the pretext of Maoist insurgency in Nepal.
In the second cable dated December 13, 2003, the US Ambassador wrote that he relayed concerns about the activities of Indian intelligence agents in Kathmandu who were apparently “characterising USG policy and motives in Nepal as malevolently aimed at undermining Nepal’s sovereignty.”
In the September 22, 2006 cable, Ambassador James Moriarty wrote that Nepal was being through a crunch time with the Maoists trying to get in the power through “bluff” despite having “relatively little popular support” and no military capability “to take on the government’s security services in an open fight” while they were in the talks tables.
“The Prime Minister is desperate to avoid being blamed for being the one who derailed the peace process,” the cable said, adding that the government inaction to curb the Maoist excesses was leading “many Nepalis, particularly in Kathmandu, to think that a Maoist victory is inevitable.”
The cable revealed that the U.S. Embassy exerted pressure on the then prime minister, Girija Prasad Koirala, and the Seven Party Alliance that shook hands with the rebel Maoists to bring down the king’s direct rule to use police against the Maoist excesses. Ambassador Moriarty hinted that his visits to the Nepal Army camps in the Western Nepal were intentional to demoralise the Maoists. “I’ve also created a firestorm of controversy by visiting a couple of military bases (as well as a lot of civilians) out West and publicly condemning Maoist violence.”
Under the subtitle “Preparing for the worst”, the Ambassador said that a cache of 4500 weapons would be supplied to the Nepal Army if the Maoists returned to violence again.
He suggested that the diplomatic missions and donor agencies in Kathmandu had their own interests and understanding of the Nepal’s political development after the Maoists came to the peace process, expressing fear that a Maoist assumption of power through force would lead to a humanitarian disaster in Nepal side by side energising leftist insurgencies and threatening stability in the region. “It thus behooves us to continue to do everything possible to block such an outcome.”
In the June 18, 2007 dispatch, Ambassador Moriarty shared wtih Washington D.C. that the Indian side also had taken a tougher line on Maoist abuses in Nepal.
“The Indian Ambassador continues privately to express much more pessimism about Maoist actions and intentions than in the past (reftel). Mukherjee shared our analysis that the Maoists continue to seek total state power — even if he is not prepared to say so publicly.”
Foreign Minister Mukherjee’s recent push for CPN-UML leader MK Nepal to maintain seven-party unity and enforce law and order was useful and timely, he said, referring to leader Nepal’s visit to New Delhi.
“According to the Indian political counselor, Prime Minister Monmohan Singh was even blunter with MK Nepal, warning him to be wary of the Maoists and urging him to work with Prime Minister Koirala,” he Moriarty wrote to Washington D.C., expressing hope that “a two-pronged message from India and the U.S. could help push the GON to address the current security situation and move quickly toward a November Constituent Assembly election while maintaining guard against Maoist machinations.”