America’s, India’s and Europe’s fears of the communist ghost in Nepal are ridiculous. The outcry that Maoists would take over the government is evidence of sheer ignorance of the on-the-ground realities there. Maoists already won their political battle once their agenda of a constituent assembly became the national agenda–and they have promised to hand over their arms under U.N. supervision. The makeup of Nepali society is such that no other system of governance can function there except inclusive parliamentary democracy. The parties must fight for a noble cause rather than committing suicide. How can civilized people ask the parties to compromise with the king who fired bullets on peaceful demonstrators? If you really care, persuade the king to surrender.
Newsweek, July 2006