Andrew Korybko clarifies on WION's report

WION Web Team
New DelhiUpdated: Dec 12, 2019, 09:41 AM IST
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File photo. Photograph:(ANI)

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Andrew Korybko clarified saying that the 'anti-Indian' label attributed to him was 'misleading, if not factually false in several instances'.

After WION named several experts involved in information warfare on behalf of the Pakistan government, Andrew Korybko clarified saying that the "anti-Indian" label attributed to him was "misleading, if not factually false in several instances".

Describing his work, Korybko admitted that he was "critical of Indian foreign policy" because he believed that India's mantra of so-called "multi-alignment" "is mostly just a cover for deceiving Russia and China as the country pivots towards the US by entering into an unprecedented military-strategic partnership with it."

However, Korybko maintained that he had arrived at the conclusion after "objectively existing, easily verifiable" reports which were "reported upon by Indian media itself, for example, LEMOA, COMCASA, trade negotiations, joint military drills, hostile statements against China, and even trends in the arms trade (as reported by SIPRI and republished in Indian media) proving that India's share of Russian armaments have drastically decreased over the past decade."

"I actually encouraged Russian parliamentarians to participate in the joint Indo-Japanese "Asia-Africa Growth Corridor" (AAGC) for revitalising the Far East. I did not mention anything that could even remotely be interpreted as "anti-Indian," Korybko asserted in an email to WION.

"Whereas my online articles are critical of India when advising decision-makers capable of implementing ideas into practice, I strongly encouraged the strengthening of bilateral relations because I argued that the dimension described benefits Russia's grand strategic interests," Korybko said, adding, "what I advised has since come to partially pass since PM Modi's participation in the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) in Vladivostok in September as President Putin's guest of honour and the unveiling of the Vladivostok-Chennai Maritime Corridor (VCMC), which I analysed elsewhere as representing a milestone in bilateral relations."

"I vigorously argued that while I disagree with Russia's policy of recognising India's annexation of Kashmir, I understand why it did so, and that Russia did not in any way support Pakistan's position on this issue."

Korybko added that he had written entire series of articles on it, elucidating that it "cannot by any objective means be described as "anti-Indian" despite my personal view being that this was the morally wrong stance to take, though once again, I explained why Russia did it and what it intends to gain by doing so."

"Breaking "taboo", I pointed out how Russia and China are at odds over Kashmir since their positions are contradictory, which cannot be described as an "anti-Indian" position but merely an objective observation," Korybko explained.

"I'm so concerned with the pace and scope of Russia's pivot to India that I even wrote that Moscow must balance these ties with Beijing in order to not destabilize RIC, offering some proposals for how this could happen," he said.

"On the topic of my supposed lack of educational and institutional credentials, it should be clear beyond any doubt whatsoever that the 'source' who shared that claim with you was either totally unprofessional and hadn't even spent the time needed to research my work and/or intended for you to share factually false claims about me which would then have provoked me to publicly respond and discredit your outlet with the evidence that I just shared," Korybko said.

Korybko observed that the "source" in the WION story intended to "publicly smear" him out of fear that the other India-critical analyses written by him may have some "identifiable effect in shaping public and professional perceptions" and to "trick your outlet into sharing literally fake, slanderous, and libellous claims about me so that I then, in turn, discredit you."

Korybko, however, appreciated WION's journalistic integrity in reaching out to him before running the story while accepting that it was WION's "editorial decision to proceed with it" but added that it was "factually false, slanderous and libellous claims".