Saudi investment in CPEC will deepen Pak ties with Riyadh and Beijing...

Pakistan has officially invited Saudi Arabia to not only invest in the geo-economically celebrated China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) but also be a strategic partner, deepening considerable strategic convergence on economic as well as geo-political issues. The immediate reason... More

Pompeo claims to “reset” ties with Pakistan but makes India “strategic partner”

Just few days before the arrival of the US Secretary of the State, Mike Pompeo, in Pakistan, the US officially cancelled US$300 million aid to Pakistan, signaling the acute low health of Pak-US ties. Then came Mike... More

Divergence with the US brings Pakistan & Iran closer, but not close...

Notwithstanding the not-so-warm past, the fact that Iran’s foreign minister is the first foreign dignitary to visit the newly established government of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) itself signifies the shifting regional dynamics of bi-lateral relations against the changing... More

New regional configurations taking lead in Afghanistan war

About two weeks ago Pakistan reportedly hosted spy-chiefs of Russia, China and Iran to formulate a joint policy and a platform for extended co-operation in Afghanistan against the rising threat of the Islamic State in Khorasan (IS-K)... More

The learned and not learned lessons from Afghanistan

While the most regular and most reported feature of life in Afghanistan remains the US ‘war on terror’ and the way this war continues to wreck havoc every now and then, killing thousands every year, there is... More

To forge their peace, Afghan Taliban wage their war

While the latest Taliban attack on the city of Ghazni in Afghanistan has led many in the West, especially the mainstream media, to conclude that no peace talks with the Taliban can bring peace, these analysis seem... More

India faces tough choices as the US sanctions Iran

For the Indian policy makers, one of the crucial questions today is of how to walk a balancing act between the US, their prime strategic ally, and Iran, their traditional regional ally and, of course, third biggest... More

Why is the US switching sides in Afghanistan?

In a recent twist of events, the Afghan war seems to have turned away from a ‘war on terror’ on the Taliban to a ‘war of cooperation’ with the Taliban. Face-to-face meetings between the US officials and... More

India’s lingering BRICS dilemma

With the world’s almost two-third of the total wealth to be concentrated in Asia in coming decades, any multilateral grouping, such as BRICS, which involves Asian economies in a big way is hard to get a refusal... More

Pakistan’s general election brings the opposition to power, only to find a...

As we write this piece, Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehree-i-Insaaf (PTI) (Pakistan Justice Party) is the leading party, only a bat’s swing away from forming its first ever federal government,leaving Pakistan Muslim League (N) behind by a significant... More

Afghanistan: Is the Trump administration turning the tide to better?

With the Afghan Taliban claiming indirect talks currently going on with the US, the hope for an eventual emergence of a long-term truce, if not an absolute settlement and end of the war, seems to be on... More

Emphasis on dialogue is back in Afghanistan

Last few months have seen Afghanistan moving from the Taliban’s direct offer of talks with the US to the Ghani administration responding with a similar offer. Of course, president did wrap his offer without pre-conditions. The Taliban... More

Pakistan’s second decade of democracy

If the word ‘unprecedented’ was to be defined in the Pakistani political context, the immediate reference would be the two consecutive (2008-2013 and 2013-2018) transfers of power from one elected government to another, illustrating Pakistan’s evolution from... More

Pakistan & Afghanistan find a road-map to peace

Despite the myriad odds, Pakistan and Afghanistan have been successful in charting out a mutually agreed road-map to peace and stability in the ‘Af-Pak’ region. Whereas its many phases, starting from a proposal and the behind the... More

The US softens up on Pakistan to find ‘peace’ in Afghanistan

After experiencing months of cold, it seems that the US is starting to realize the folly of disengaging Pakistan, and is accordingly warming up. While underlying tensions remain, the recent change in emphasis on the role that... More

Can the Elephant and Dragon dance together?

Despite the otherwise upbeat assessments about the latest Xi-Modi meeting in China, the outstanding fact remains China’s failure in getting India’s support for its Belt & Road Initiative (BRI). While China’s failure doesn’t simply mean a failure... More

Amid the new “spring offensive”, the “new” US strategy stands defeated

The announcement by the Afghan Taliban of their spring offensive against the US and NATO forces should not have come as a surprise to the observers of the war, familiar with its dynamics and the factors pushing... More

Modi takes a leaf out of the book of Rao and Vajpayee...

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi appears to have taken a leaf out of the book of former Prime Ministers P. V. Narasimha Rao and A. B. Vajpayee when he decided to go to China to have an... More

Against India’s plan to scuttle, Pakistan has the plan to expand SAARC

When Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena recently arrived in Pakistan as a chief guest to celebrate the Pakistan Day on March 23, he was not just witnessing the military parade, but was also making a meaningful statement... More

Cracking the Afghan-Pak nut

It is nothing short of a challenge for Pakistan to reconcile its western neighbour, a neighbour Pakistan has almost never enjoyed cordial relations with. But the need for reconciling the estranged neighbour has never been greater than now.... More

What John Bolton’s appointment as NSA would lead Pak-US relations to?

What will the newly appointed National Security Adviser (NSA) John Bolton, the well-known hawk, would advise the US president Trumpon matters related to the US national security? This is the question that has been raised almost everywhere... More


Saudi investment in CPEC will deepen Pak ties with Riyadh and...

Pakistan has officially invited Saudi Arabia to not only invest in the geo-economically celebrated China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) but also be a strategic partner, deepening considerable strategic convergence on economic as well as geo-political issues. The immediate reason for Saudi Arabia’s billion-dollar investment in CPEC is, as Pakistan’s own finance minister said, his country’s poor economic condition and the fast-depleting foreign exchange reserves, hampering its ability to continue and complete... More

India’s juvenile volte face

It was the “political survival instinct” of the rapidly weakening BJP which made the Indian government suddenly call off the foreign ministers-level talks with Pakistan which were to be held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session in New York next week. India’s foreign minister Sushma Swaraj and her Pakistani counterpart S M Qureshi were to meet and thrash out a range of issues bedeviling bilateral ties. The reasons for not... More

South Asian media: Inventing a region?

South Asia is a popular buzz word which is rarely defined properly. This lack of clarity suits many as people have no idea what it actually means and how one is supposed to respond to it. The result has been an overlap of ideas, projects and ultimately regional strategies that fail to produce a concept which everyone can buy into. South Asian media as it exists today is a... More

No more PSLs abroad

“The pulsating cheering crowd in the National Stadium Karachi for the PSL Final, and subsequently for the three international T20s, underscored the return of peace to a city (and country) torn by internal strife. Bereft of any sports spectacle and living in cold fear for life and limb of their (and their families) because of open-ended threats from terrorists, political, religious and the criminal kind, the people of Karachi... More

Myanmar moves closer to China with increased bilateral trade and investment...

Myanmar and China are consolidating their bilateral trade and investment relationship. In fact, Beijing is fast becoming Myanmar’s strongest and most important ally, but this strengthened relationship has made many in the government nervous. Even the State Counselor, Aung San Suu Kyi, the country’s civilian leader, is worried about the impression this increased dependence on China is having. She wants to allay the fears of both the United States and... More



The fourth summit of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), held in Kathmandu on August 30 and 31, was “not fruitful” because of the inherent “weakness” of the regional inter-state institution,... More