EDITOR'S CHOICE

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Who profits from the end of the mid-range nuclear treaty?


The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved its Doomsday Clock to only 2 minutes to midnight. It might be tempting to turn this into a mere squabble about arrows and olives if this wasn’t such a... More

In Jammu and Kashmir, the road to disaster


We have a new governor of Jammu and Kashmir, a new chief secretary, a new director general of police and a new adviser on security. The best outreach to the people of J&K (especially the Kashmir Valley)... More

New Silk Roads define brand China


The New Silk Roads symbolize way more than high-speed rail lines crisscrossing Eurasia, or a maze of highways, pipelines and port connectivity. They represent a Chinese alliance with at least 65 participating nations, responsible for 62% of... More

Why China buying up ports is worrying Europe


There is rising concern about whether China will use its commercial acquisitions of overseas ports for military purposes, under its drive to put civilian technology and resources to military use. Under its trillion-dollar “Belt and Road Initiative” –... More

US should push for political solution in Afghanistan


The war in Afghanistan has been long and costly for the United States. It’s gone on for nearly 17 years, longer than any other American war. We’ve spent about $1 trillion there, and we continue spending about... More

Trump is playing a dangerous Asian game


US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis had to do some elaborate diplomatic two-steps during their swing across the Indian subcontinent during the first week of September. And that goes way beyond simply... More

US-China trade war is helping boost use of yuan in international transactions


The trade war initiated by the United States is actually helping China achieve one of its coveted long-term financial goals – the greater use of its currency, the yuan, in international commerce and financial transactions. As of the... More

Sino-Russia military relations at ‘an all-time high’


Russia's President Vladimir Putin (center) reviews a military honor guard with Chinese President Xi Jinping (left) outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on June 8, 2018. Photo: AFP Like most high-ranking military officers, Air Force... More

Afghan great game moves centre stage


Through the past week, the US-led Afghan war against the Taliban transformed as a struggle over engaging with the Taliban in peace talks. The US successfully stalled the Russian format on Afghanistan slated for September 4 in Moscow... More

Kofi Annan, the peacemaker who knew how to play big-power politics


Kofi Annan’s career was inextricably entangled with power politics. The former United Nations secretary-general, who died on Saturday, spent decades grappling with tensions between the organization’s members over crises from the Balkans to Syria. At times, he... More

Bleak times for freedom of expression, whether emergency or not


Its time to stop the nitpicking. All that hair-splitting about whether what we are witnessing in India today is classical fascism or not – stop it. The argument that this is not like the Emergency of 1975... More

India’s social-media ‘lynch mobs’ pose growing threat


Social-media platforms are often criticized for their susceptibility to toxic dialogue and vicious attacks. It is a problem that India knows well. Just ask External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, whose recent vilification by members and supporters of... More

The new trade order


Since the start of the year, U.S. President Donald Trump has lashed out at allies and adversaries alike on trade. Often, as with India, the U.S. has pushed for enhanced security cooperation at the same time it... More

One day does not an election make


The much-awaited Gazipur city election is over, the “we-knew-it-from-before” polls results are upon us, the “impartiality” of the police and the “neutrality” of the civil administration have once again been demonstrated, the never-too-late-to-follow “certificate” of the Election... More

The PDP-BJP coalition was an unnatural and opportunistic alliance


The BJP pulled out of the coalition government and the other partner, the PDP, had no choice but to resign. The BJP pulled out of the coalition government and the other partner, the PDP, had no choice... More

India’s pivot to Eurasia


Sandwiched between U.S. President Donald Trump’s acrimonious public exchanges with other leaders at the G-7 (group of seven industrialised countries) summit (June 7-8) and the headline-hogging U.S.-North Korea summit (June 12), the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit... More

Diplomatic damp squib


It is all but forgotten that the Korean War (1950-53) was brought to an armistice only after India agreed to make itself available to chair the UN Neutral Nations Repatriation Commission that determined which of the North... More

SCO nurtures Sino-Indian relations


Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday expressed their willingness to lend momentum to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), with Xi offering  to work with India and other member states to carry... More

Mani Shankar Aiyar on Pranab Mukherjee’s speech to RSS


I must confess to having felt queasy when I heard that our former Rashtrapati, Pranab Mukherjee, a man I much admire, was likely to accept an invitation from the RSS Sarsanghchalak, Mohan Bhagwat, to attend the convocation of Sangh... More

Pakistan’s next election will pave the way for progress


Pakistan, a former British colony in South Asia with a Muslim-majority (97%) population of 220 million, the sixth largest in the world,  is a regional power to be reckoned with. It has the geo-strategic advantage of being... More

Rohingya rape survivors face a harrowing choice


The 3-month-old boy has no name. His mother, Uma Suleiman, cradles him during the sweltering nights when he can’t sleep, patting his bare back with her palm. She had done the same for her other children, all of... More

COLUMN

Afghanistan: The big story of massive aid waste

There are ghost soldiers; ghost police officers; ghost clinics and even ghost patients in Afghanistan. There are billions of dollars spent on papers, but there is very little on the ground. As such, despite spending billions on controlling narcotics to improving health conditions and the state of security, Afghanistan remains a country with too many ill-conceived programs and too little progress made on every front. The story of the massive... More

Parties over people

With elections to Bangladesh’s JatiyaSangsad (National Assembly) now declared to be held on December 23, the political scene in the country will enter a new phase. The announcement was sudden but not really unexpected given the way politics developed over the past few weeks. The Awami League is not in a mood to listen to the others. Her main opponent, the JatiyaOikkyo Front, led by Dr Kamal Hossain and... More

Ensuring challenges provide opportunities

The situation in our country in the wake of global and internal changes affecting Pakistan has evoked multiple challenges. Not to get bogged down by their sheer number it seems important to analyse each and every challenge that the country is facing. These need not only a reaction from the state to tackle them but as an opportunity for developing new vistas of understanding for responding to the problems... More

Mixed messages from Myanmar’s bye-elections

Analysts are pouring over the results of Myanmar’s bye elections in Myanmar, vainly trying to read the tea leaves, and perhaps reading too much into them. But it was certainly a wake-up call for both major parties – the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) and the previous governing party, the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) – but the lessons that can be drawn for the future are... More

The Eurasian concept

When continents are defined as “mainly continuous expanses of land” one is left wondering why Europe and Asia, though very much a continuous land mass, have been perceived through centuries as two separate continents. One major reason may be that the western end of the Eurasian landmass took a very different turn in its development, with renaissance, scientific and industrial revolutions and ‘modernity’ changing its economic, social and intellectual... More

VIDEO-INTERVIEW

OUTCOME AND FUTURE OF BMISTEC? & WHAT’S ON THE BALANCE?


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

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