Nehru discusses political strategy and his party's relations with America in this early letter, written the year that the Indian National Congress passed its resolution demanding independence. Writing as a general secretary of the All India Congress Committee, he is responding to a letter written by Sailendra Nath Ghosh who was president of the American Branch of the Indian National Congress.
Ghosh had complained, in a letter of 24 January 1929 (a carbon of which is in the present lot), that many Indians in America supported the call for India to become a British Dominion, instead of fully independent, and that the treatment of America in the Indian press, using terms such as "imperialistic" or "materialistic," prejudices the independence cause. Nehru responds soberly: "It is not possible for us to regulate in any way the activities of the press here. Unfortunately the press in every country gives special prominence to the darker aspects of life. All thinking persons however realise that this in no way represents the life of the nation. The United States is too big and great a country not to have its dark corners."
"In regard to American imperialism it is a little difficult and I am not quite sure how far it is desirable to avoid all reference to it. If such references are to be avoided similar references of imperialist activities of other countries, for instance France, Japan, Italy, etc., must also be avoided. That simply means that we do not consider the world aspect of the question but only our attack on British Imperialism. I agree with you that there was no point in our attacking the American Government. But a consideration of imperialism must necessarily involve the American aspect of it."
Nehru rebuts his correspondent's wish to filter those Americans who can and cannot deliberate with the Congress Party, asserting that "So far as America is concerned, we have no opportunity to give prominence or otherwise. So far as India is concerned, we seldom have visits from prominent Americans."
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