Obama's background makes him pro-Indian: Historian Simon Schama (Interview)





New US President Barack Obama’s background makes him pro-Indian and “he is going to do a lot for India before this spring is out”, says noted historian Simon Schama.A professor at Columbia University in the US, British historian Simon Schama foresees a favourable run for India vis-a-vis bilateral ties with the US during Barack Obama’s government.

Why? “Obama’s background - his mother was a hippy adventurist and his Indonesian link - makes him very pluralistic and very pro-Indian,” Schama told IANS in an interview.

The man hailed as one of the best historians and art writers of our times held forth on a variety of subjects like politics, art and music in Jaipur recently.

The author of 14 books, Schama writes for “The Guardian” and the “New Yorker” and has presented more than 30 movies for the BBC Television and the Emmy award-winning “Power of Art”.

His new book, “The American Future: A History”, explores how the American optimism about the infinite possibilities of its land and resources may be snuffed out. His other books include “Citizens: A Chronicle of the French Revolution”, “Landscape and Memory”, “Rembrandt’s Eyes”, “Rough Crossings: Britain, the American Revolution and the Slaves”.

Excerpts from the interview:

Q: What kind of future do you foresee for India during Barack Obama’s tenure?

A: If George W. Bush was hospitable to India, then Barack Obama’s background - his mother was a hippy adventurist and his Indonesian link - makes him very pluralistic and very pro-Indian. He is very anxious to make it work for India and is going to do a lot before the spring is out - he will go to the Middle East - especially to West Bank and Gaza - and then come to India. He will also appoint a new Indian ambassador.

I think Hillary Clinton will be the key to the appointment because she is so pro-Indian and will not be telephoning every five minutes to ask who’s good for India. Moreover, the fact that Bill Clinton was so engaged in Kashmir will give her a better perspective....

comments powered by Disqus
History News Network