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The making of Frankenstein
People presume Frankenstein was the creature created by the mad doctor; the presumption is wrong. In the original novel by Shelley, it’s the doctor whose name is Frankenstein. Strangely, it’s the same in the real world

When 18 year old Mary Shelley wrote her world famous novel in 1818 (It was called “Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus”), she wouldn’t have imagined that close to two hundred years later, the slim perception of masses would have ravaged the modesty of her protagonists’ character by actually assuming that the mad doctor’s monster was called Frankenstein. Putting facts straight – for one, the doctor wasn’t mad; for two, the creature had no name; for three, it was the doctor whose name was Victor Frankenstein. Somewhere during the past two centuries, humanity has effusively and painstakingly worked towards ensuring that the ‘created’ is referred to as the ‘creator’, and the name of the creator of the demon is deliberately forgotten. Ask yourself, even before our discourse came to light, would you have known the name of the doctor?

But pray do not worry at the slight, the evolutionary ball has played to our side of ring only, for in the real world of geopolitical power dynamics, it’s not just the ‘created’ that is the fiend, but the ‘creator’ himself who is truly our Frankenstein.

Take our dear neighbour China. Under which genre would you classify China? Is it a Frankenstein itself? Or is it creating modern day ogre Frankensteins? Let’s do an epistemological recon! Well, for the sake of continuation of their business and private gains, they would not mind supplying weapons and equipment to all kinds of subversive organisations. The Chinese have become rather infamous for supplying weapons to just about anybody with utter disregard to international conventions and propriety. The Chinese are not only doing this for the sake of increasing their dominance in the flourishing international market of small arms but also for the sake of getting access to minerals in lieu of arms. China has no qualms in selling weapons to rogue states like Zimbabwe, Sudan or Myanmar. It doesn’t matter to China whether the arms, helicopters, armoured vehicles and trucks supplied by it to Sudan are being used for genocide or not, so long as they continue to get unrestricted and privileged access to the Sudanese oil reserve or minerals of Congo.

In a shocking revelation by an NGO Human Rights First, some part of the near $300 million arms sales by China to Zimbabwe was even financed in kind with elephant ivory. All this for the simple reason that for the giant Chinese economic engine to keep running, it needs an insatiable amount of minerals and fuels. And what can be a better way than to befriend the rogue dictators and militia of the mineral rich but impoverished African states? Likewise, to counter the growing economic and military threat that emanates from India, China has over the decades groomed Pakistan to fight a proxy war against India on their behalf. And it has been incredibly successful in this endeavor. So on one hand, while the entire missile arsenal of Pakistan has its origin in China (for example Hatf-2 missile is actually M-11 of Chinese origin, while Shaheen-1 and Shaheen-2 missiles are actually Chinese M-9 and M-18 missiles) and the Pakistani Air force is being increasingly modernised with the induction of JF-17 combat aircraft, on the other hand, China has consistently turned a blind eye to the Pakistani experimentation with Jihad. China was/is satisfied with seeing Pakistan being used against its bete noire India and even the US. China perhaps never thought that this nemesis might someday be turned against its own interests. Or perhaps it had absolute confidence in its ability to suppress any uprising. Yet, the recent violence in the Xinjiang province, the violent suppression of the same, the killing of thousands of Muslim Uighurs and the subsequent threat of Al Qaida to systematically target Chinese interests in Africa bring all of it to a full circle. For Victor Frankenstein, a new monster. That narrates part of the story, the rest follows.

The issue of the creation of ogres is nothing new. And it’s not that it started with the American training of the Afghan Mujahideens to counter Soviet invasion in the 80s. It had its dawn much before that. Interestingly, in the book, The American Economy, by Cynthia Clark Northrup, it is stated, “In the pre-World War II era, Japan remained utterly dependent upon the United States for much of the products to pursue its belligerent policy in Asia. After going against the US wishes and pressuring France to allow Japanese troops to enter French Indochina, Japan found itself the target of an American embargo on US iron and steel.” As stated in the book, Japan lost access to 66% of its export market and 39% of its imports.

By:- Pathikrit Payne

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