New Delhi: Finally, it seems their visceral distrust of America prevailed. The Left parties, initially undecided about whether to protest during the visit of US President Barack Obama, have decided to go ahead.
Some Communist leaders are rumoured to have a soft corner for Obama, unlike for his predecessor George Bush, who was much reviled by the Reds. But Big Brother Communist Party of India-Marxist was not enthusiastic about an elaborate protest like they organised during Bush's visit in 2006.
CPI-M general secretary Prakash Karat has left it to party MPs to decide on attending the address by Obama to the joint session of the Indian parliament Nov 8. However, junior partners - especially the Communist Party of India and the Forward Bloc - were keen on some sort of protest as they thought the Left could otherwise be viewed as changing its anti-America/anti-imperlialist/anti-capitalist stance.
During their protest, the Left parties will rake up issues like extradition of Union Carbide's former boss Warren Anderson and foreign investment in retail.
Image: President Barack Obama makes a final get-out-the-vote push for Democratic candidates during a rally at Cleveland State University in Cleveland on Oct. 31, 2010.