Washington: Describing India as an "important Pacific power", the draft election manifesto of the Democratic Party has said it would continue to invest in long-term strategic relationship with the country and "press" Pakistan to deny terrorists sanctuaries on its soil.
The Democratic Party Platform – akin to election manifesto of political parties in India – would be formally adopted at its convention in Philadelphia later this month wherein Hillary Clinton would be nominated as the Democratic Party's presidential nominee for the November general elections.
A draft of the platform was released by the Democratic Party on Friday. Among its members include people from both Clinton and the rival Bernie Sanders' campaigns. Indian-American Neera Tanden, who is widely seen as a potential Cabinet member of the Clinton administration, is among its members.
"Democrats will continue to invest in a long-term strategic partnership with India – the world's largest democracy, a nation of great diversity, and an important Pacific power," the platform said, signalling that a Democratic administration would continue with the India policy of the Obama Administration.
The platform said the US will work with its allies and partners to fortify regional institutions and norms as well as protect freedom of the seas in the South China Sea. "We will push back against North Korean aggression and press China to play by the rules. We will stand up to Beijing on unfair trade practices, currency manipulation, and cyber-attacks. And we will promote greater respect for human rights, including the rights of Tibetans," it said.
The platform calls for a strong counter-terrorism measure. "Democrats will continue to push for an Afghan-led peace process and press Pakistan to deny all terrorists sanctuary on its soil," the platform said.
Cautioning the countrymen that it would be a dangerous mistake for America to abandon its responsibilities, the draft said, "We cannot, as Donald Trump suggests, cede the mantle of leadership for global peace and security to others who will not have our best interests in mind." American leadership is essential to keeping the US safe and economy growing in the years ahead, said the draft platform.
"From the Asia Pacific to the Indian Ocean, we will deepen our alliances in the region with Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines, South Korea, and Thailand," it said. The platform supported Obama's decision to maintain a limited troop presence in Afghanistan and ensure that it never again serves as a haven for terrorists to plan and launch attacks on the US.
Rejecting "Donald Trump's vilification of Muslims", the Democratic platform said it will repudiate vile tactics that would do the US harm.
"We reject Donald Trump's vilification of Muslims. It violates the religious freedom that is the bedrock of our country, feeds into ISIS' nefarious narrative, and alienates people and countries who are crucial to defeating terrorism," the draft platform said.
"We reject Donald Trump's suggestion that our military should engage in war crimes, like murdering civilians related to suspected terrorists or torturing prisoners. These tactics run counter to American principles, undermine our moral standing, cost innocent lives, and endanger Americans," it said.
"We also firmly reject Donald Trump's willingness to mire tens of thousands of our combat troops in a misguided ground war in the Middle East. It would embolden ISIS, and there is nothing smart or strong about such an approach," it added.
Asserting that climate change poses an urgent and severe threat to the national security, the platform said the Democratic party believes that the United States must lead in forging a robust global solution to the climate crisis. "We will not only meet the goals we set in Paris, we will seek to exceed them and push other countries to do the same by slashing carbon pollution and rapidly driving down emissions of potent greenhouse gases like hydrofluorocarbons," the draft platform said.
"We will support developing countries in their efforts to mitigate carbon pollution and other greenhouse gases, deploy more clean energy, and invest in climate resilience and adaptation," it said. On immigration, the platform said people should come to the United States with visas and not through smugglers.
"That is why the Democratic Party supports legal immigration, within reasonable limits, that meets the needs of families, communities, and the economy as well as maintains the United States' role as a beacon of hope for people seeking safety, freedom, and security. Immigration is not a problem to be solved, it is a defining aspect of the American character and history," the platform said.