New Delhi: Asserting that the statecraft of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was creative and imaginative, Dr Michael Fullilove, Executive Director of the Lowy Institute of Australia on Friday said that the leader showed a willingness to shred off the habits of the past and seek new friends and new ways of doing things.
Speaking at the second Atal Bihari Vajpayee Memorial Lecture, Dr Michael Fullilove noted that Vajpayee was a poet as well as a politician.
"Prime Minister Vajpayee was a poet as well as a politician. Both as an External Affairs Minister and Prime Minister, his statecraft is creative and imaginative. With his belief in the relationship between India and the United States and his determination to look east, Prime Minister showed a willingness to shred off the habits of the past and seek new friends and new ways of doing things," he said.
Comparing diplomacy with the game of cricket, Fullilove said that Vajpayee had a close association with cricket.
"The game of cricket is in many ways similar to the great game of the relations between states. I think it contains important lessons to the foreign policies of both India and Australia, as we never get the evolving strategic circumstances of the Indo Pacific," he said.
"Like foreign policy, cricket is a long game Test match. It can take up to five days. Things are opaque in cricket as in diplomacy. Sometimes a draw can be a win, and foreign policy requires many of the same qualities including intelligence, skill, patience, discipline, toughness and imagination," he said.
He added that in foreign policy the decision-making environment is fast and fluid. (ANI)