2/27 Barack Obama’s Narendra Modi Legacy w/ Alex Sammon

February 27, 2020

Alex Sammon of the American Prospect joins Michael Brooks to discuss his piece, “Barack Obama’s Legacy Is Narendra Modi.” Sammon and Brooks dive into how the former president helped rehabilitate the prime minister on the global stage, which helped set the stage for Modi’s current anti-Muslim agenda in India. The two explain how Modi deliberately allowed the 2002 Hindu riots in Gujarat to transpire while he was the state’s Chief Minister; this made him even too toxic even for the Bush administration, which barred him from obtaining a travel visa to the US. After Modi won the Indian Prime Minister election in 2014, Barack Obama invited him to the White House to reform trade between the US and India and looked the other way to Modi’s humanitarian crimes. Advisors like Steve Rattner gave cover to Obama when they made the media rounds to praise Modi’s government as a model of economic and social justice. Brooks and Sammon explain the diplomatic horse-trading between Obama and Modi, where the Indian PM would open markets to US investment and Obama would ignore the Hindu nationalist’s authoritarianism in India. Brooks and Sammon conclude their discussion with a broader examination of liberal foreign policy, and how it will always be subject to the interests of the business investor class. 

And in the Fun Half: an update on Modi from a listener in India, Thomas Friedman wants a Democratic coup from “the grown-ups,” Warren her position on superdelegates is not different from Bernie’s in 2016, a Washington Post data team investigates Evo Morales election from 2019, Mike Pence called to save us from Coronavirus, Trump explains why he made cuts to CDC and HHS, plus your calls and IMs! 

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