In a debate moderated by TIMES NOW's Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami, panelists -- Sheshadri Chari, Member, Natl Executive, BJP; Maroof Raza, Strategic Affairs Expert; Zafar Hilaly, Fmr Pak Ambassador to US, and Major General (Retd) Rashid Qureshi, Fmr Spokesperson to Musharraf -- discuss the issue as to what will change for India with Obama as President for the 2nd term.
Barack Obama on Wed (Nov 7) won a historic election to get a 2nd term as US President, overcoming a stiff challenge from Republican Mitt Romney, defying concerns over his handling of economy and anxiety over the future. A votary of strong ties with India, Obama scored what turned out to be a comfortable victory over Romney after a bitter campaign with his rivals attacking him on issues of unemployment and recession. Disproving predictions of a narrow victory in a very tight race, the incumbent won the election in crucial battleground states after a neck-and-neck race in the initial stages, getting 303 electoral votes against 206 of Romney in a college of 535 votes. Notwithstanding doubts over his ability to revive economy from the effects of the crisis, the worst after the Great Depression of 1930s, voters appeared to have chosen status quo leaving Democrats with control of the Senate and Republicans the House of Representatives. Obama walked away with wins in the swing states of Colorado, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Michigan, California and Ohio. Obama said they battled fiercely only because of their love for the country and promised to work with his Republican rival to take the debt-ridden nation forward.
In his 2nd term, will the American President improving the foreign policy he followed from 2008 or will he continue the new form of American protectionism? Will his government try an alienate China's growing dominance in Asia by getting closer to India? The next four years will tell. Obama did not think twice to put Pakistan in its place when his Navy Seals stormed into Pakistan's capital to eliminate the world's most dreaded terrorist, Osama bin Laden. Not did he offer any leeway when one drone strike after the other in Pakistan's conflict zone dented its diplomatic ties with them. A re-election only emphasises steely resolve beneath his diplomatic outlook. For India, Obama's re-election may have come at the right time even as he kept the second largest economy and Asia's gaint on its toes during his first term. The middle east which was more hopeful when he was elected is not hopeful this time around. While there has been a lot of criticism over Obama's foreign policies, India will be happy considering Obama's tough posturing against China and Pakistan.