Shashi’s impact on other candidates

The entrance of Shashi Tharoor will have an impact on the other candidates. A quick rundown:

Dhanapala. He has been campaigning furiously for about a year now, with little appreciable progress.

He recently made a big deal of an upcoming trip to India to ask for their support. Of course, Shashi's announcement has probably stopped that.

At one point he tried to cozy up to US conservatives, as we reported, but it wasn't clear that he made any progress. Indeed, now the North American right wing is attacking him.

And, as we've pointed out, the Russians aren't particularly keen on him either. We do note that some of the crticisms of Dhanapala, Indian nuclear power and insider, also adhere to Shashi.

Finally, it appears that Dhanapala's work at the Sri Lankan Peace Secretariat, from which he resigned to run for UNSG, has not been too successful. The bus bombing today is devastating.

Despite FP's evaluation of his candidacy (1/6 chance), we think Dhanapala's candidacy is over. We think that Shashi's entrance seals that. There is probably not room for two insider candidates.

Sathirathai. His candidacy has been struggling over the last several months due to political chaos in his own country.  As we pointed out, he doesn't seem to be seriously discussed in New York any more. Indeed, in reporting on Shashi's candidacy, the Bangkok Post played down Sathirathai's chances:

Such a move would throw a giant spanner in the already long-shot hopes of Deputy Prime Minister Surakiart Sathirathai to be the next UN chief.

If that were not enough competition, Pakistan may get into the race.Asked by reporters whether Islamabad will also be fielding a candidate, Pakistan's UN Ambassador Munir Akarm replied, "We have also been giving serious consideration to field a candidate but no decision has yet been taken."

We also confess to finding the title of this piece "India may run for Secretary-General" quite telling. Is India? Or Shashi? Or perhaps it tells us more about the roots of Sathirathai's candidacy as "national glory"? Just a thought.

Ban. Ban Ki-moon's candidacy is trucking along nicely. He seems to be following a strategy of lining up the Security Council, with this trips to Africa (here and here)and Europe. However, there are clear reports in the press that the current batch of announced candidates are unsatisfying and more should join. That seems to be an indictment of Ban's candidacy. Surely Shashi's entrance means that he and India see a similar opening?

The unannounced candidates? It's much harder to say. Dervis's strategy is unclear (profile coming soon on him). Again, Ramos Horta is struggling in his own country. And one just doesn't know about Deva.

3 Responses to “Shashi’s impact on other candidates”

  1. Anonymous Says:
  2. Chapter15 » Blog Archive » Battle of Ideas Says:

    […] We have long argued that Sathirathai has no chance (here, here, and here). And we still believe that insiders are not viable. That leaves other candidates. With Ban Ki-moon not in nomination, it is already clear that other candidates must emerge. Dervis, Deva, Goh? Lodhi doesn’t want it. Ramos-Horta just accepted a new job… […]

  3. Sharmila Says:

    As Indians we feel proud of Dr Tharoor’s candidacy, hope he wins the battle. His outstanding academic and professional achievements would be superbly supplemented if he is selected. India’s image will get a makeover with the selection of Dr Tharoor as the helmsman of the UN. At the same time if selected, he will have this enormous responsibility to change the organisation for better.

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