In the G20 meeting in Istanbul, President Vladimir Putin of Russia dropped a bombshell. He circulated a list of 40 countries who, in one way or another, were supporting, funding or arming ISIS. It is not true that the other great powers do not know. They are just maintaining, in most cases, a silence about an increasingly well known truth.
Renowned journalist Robert Fisk of The Independent, UK, has publicly stated that Saudi Arabia, threatened by a particularly lethal type of Ikhwani Wahhabism, is funding ISIS to protect the Saudi kingdom. Saudi Arabia's support to Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda is well known. The al Qaeda in Iraq became ISIS. The Janbhat al Nusra, an affiliate of al Qaeda which has taken over most of the US backed Free Syrian Army (FSA), openly states that it is funded by Qatar.
French President Hollande, even after the terrible and ghastly attack on Paris and its outskirts, has remained silent about ISIS' supporters and funders, except for saying the terrorists were trained in ISIS-occupied Syria. Similarly, there is little talk of Turkey which allows free access to ISIS, and buys stolen petrol from it, but is quick to demonise the Kurdish Workers Party, PKK and bomb them.
Turkey's President Erdogan is with NATO, but no action is taken. The French President will keep quiet about very sensitive information, but why hide the names of IS supporting countries? Why not now speak out? Putin's intervention and the call for a global front by Russia and China may be a game changer. But until then the truth about global terror will remain hidden. Even in India, there is no evidence that the government is trying to find out who its friends and possible enemies are.
Is this important? Are there not lots of covert ways of finding out who ISIS' supporters are? Well, Putin has already circulated a list of 40. Has India got a copy? No? Then why doesn't India ask Russia? As long as sizeable ground forces do not challenge the ISIS, they will not be defeated.
The brave and tenacious Kurds are not enough to defeat ISIS, al Nusra decisively without more ground troops. There have been stray reports of Indians won over by ISIS. The longer the ISIS' occupation and devastation lasts, the greater the chances of attempts at infiltration by it.
It is high time that the PM and others going to foreign countries demand access to this vital information. Undefeated terrorism can, and will, spread. This information is imperative for India's safety. Any real friend would give this information and suggest counter-terrorist measures. It is high time India knew who its real friends are. And acts accordingly.