Z-COLUMN

Z-COLUMN

Despite controversy, Afghanistan Peace Process makes major strides


Despite Kabul’s publicly made allegations on the US about ‘selling Afghanistan to the Taliban’ in the peace talks, there is little gainsaying that the Afghan-US war has never been so close to ending through settlement than it... More

Regulators and conflict of interest


A governmental body created by a legislature to implement and enforce specific laws, a "Regulatory Agency" or a "Regulator" would usually have quasi-legislative functions, executive functions, and judicial functions. Many laws govern social and economic matters, such as... More

Is Bangladesh an online state?


Bangladesh is an online state with an incredibly high number of virtual citizens. Few can match them in enthusiasm, participation and enjoyment of what the online world offers, good or bad. Much great stuff happens on the... More

How China might undo Saudi plans for Iran?


The recent Saudi bid to increase its economic and political influence in South Asia (Pakistan and India) is, as I pointed out in my previous stories for SAM, largely informed not just by the imperative of a... More

Pakistan receives warning from Iran not to join Saudi proxy war


Pakistan has received a stern warning from Iran's Major-General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' Qods Force and other senior in the aftermath of the February 13, 2019 attack on their forces by Iranian... More

‘Syndrome 2020’ unleashes a new bid to change the constitution


Myanmar’spro-democracy forces have launched a new bid to change the country’s constitution. With some 18 months left before the 2020 elections, the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) has initiated a process in parliament it hopes will... More

Handling the Kashmir crisis


The Pulwama attack that killed a little more than forty Indian soldiers, mostly Sikhs, brought the near dormant Kashmir crisis into international focus because of Modis' so-called "surgical strike" and Pakistan’s measured response. Pakistan's denial about the... More

India’s claim about keeping third parties out of Kashmir issue is hollow


Indian regimes, both past and present, have doggedly kept up the chant that there is no room for a third party in settling any dispute between India and Pakistan in regard to Kashmir. But the claim to... More

How post-Pulwama is India’s moment of not-so-pride


Almost no country in the world has bought Indian claims of having eliminated a JeM training camp in Balakot, in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KpK) province. If this wasn’t enough, Pakistan’s retaliation emphatically stamped that its ability to... More

Can Sk. Hasina retire?


Giving an interview after her electoral win, Bangladesh’s PM Sk.Hasina said that this is going to be her last term in office – her fourth- and she would like to retire and go back to her village... More

MBS’ Pakistan visit


Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman (popularly known as MBS) made a two-day royal visit to Pakistan, at a time when this region is witnessing significant upheaval in geo-politics. Facing a host of both internal and... More

Modi’s dangerous play with fire backfires


In a flurry of events, India and Pakistan have exchanged air attacks, resulting in India loosing two of its attacking fighter jets and two pilots. There is no gainsaying that this is a dangerous escalation, but this... More

How Saudi Arabia is reshaping South Asian geo-politics


The billion-dollar Saudi investments in Asia—particularly in Pakistan and India—appear to be just investment besides a practical implementation of the vision 2030 plan according to which the Saudis are changing the nature of their economy to avoid... More

China’s base near the Wakhan Corridor is a strategic setback for India’s...


An investigative report by the Washington Post recently revealed that Chinese troops have been stationed for at least three years on Tajikistan’s southeastern border, less than 30 kilometers from Pakistani-administered Kashmir across the narrow strategic strip of... More

Fighting perjury in Pakistan


One of the major companions and helpers of corruption – an illness eating away the substance of the Pakistani state, its institutions and its people – is perjury. The meaning of perjury is to lie in court... More

Case for expanding India’s bureaucracy 


Media reports based on research and official data on government employment in India suggest that with the burgeoning demand from citizens for social and economic services, and given the violent agitations for caste and community quotas in... More

Saudi Arabia seeking to be active in South Asia by deepening economic...


While many political pundits in Pakistan are trying to tie the up-coming billion-dollar Saudi investment in Pakistan with Riyadh’s need to have Islamabad as an ally in its wars in Yemen and Syria, there has been little... More

Despite sanctions compliance, India deepens energy partnership with Iran


On November 5, 2018, Washington granted India, along with seven other countries, a waiver from sanctions on oil purchases from Iran. The waiver allows for India to purchase 1.25 million tonnes per month, approximately equivalent to 300,000... More

Hybrid warfare: Strategic coercion against Pakistan


While a globalised world was a cherished goal to bring people together, globalisation is increasingly used by one or the other country or group of countries to dominate the rest of the world by a violent process.... More

Bangladesh’s Hercules syndrome and rule of vigilante law


A rapist was killed and his body was left with a note that said the death meted out to him was punishment for his crime. It was signed Hercules. A couple of other reports have appeared with... More

India key to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, says former Portuguese minister...


“This has less to do with geography than with history,” Macaes writes in his insightful book Belt and Road: A Chinese World Order. “As two rising giants, China and India will play a disproportionate role in shaping the... More

COLUMN

Despite controversy, Afghanistan Peace Process makes major strides

Despite Kabul’s publicly made allegations on the US about ‘selling Afghanistan to the Taliban’ in the peace talks, there is little gainsaying that the Afghan-US war has never been so close to ending through settlement than it is now. While Kabul continues to express its anger over being excluded, there is little, given the legitimacy crisis Kabul is itself facing, that even the principal Afghan actors can do to... More

Regulators and conflict of interest

A governmental body created by a legislature to implement and enforce specific laws, a "Regulatory Agency" or a "Regulator" would usually have quasi-legislative functions, executive functions, and judicial functions. Many laws govern social and economic matters, such as income tax, environmental laws, occupational health and safety laws, real estate law, employment laws, etc. A regulatory agency serves two primary functions in govt: implement the laws and enforce the same. Regulations... More

Is Bangladesh an online state?

Bangladesh is an online state with an incredibly high number of virtual citizens. Few can match them in enthusiasm, participation and enjoyment of what the online world offers, good or bad. Much great stuff happens on the net but so does nasty stuff. It’s also a great producer of cultural and otherwise, not to mention, political ones. The recent spate of actions against online content considered “harmful” have spiked, which,... More

How China might undo Saudi plans for Iran?

The recent Saudi bid to increase its economic and political influence in South Asia (Pakistan and India) is, as I pointed out in my previous stories for SAM, largely informed not just by the imperative of a Saudi economic expansion across Asia and avoid economic doom, but also by the objective of snatching Iran’s share of oil market in this part of the world. This is partly one reason... More

Pakistan receives warning from Iran not to join Saudi proxy war

Pakistan has received a stern warning from Iran's Major-General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' Qods Force and other senior in the aftermath of the February 13, 2019 attack on their forces by Iranian Baluch militants in the country's restive Sistan and Baluchistan province bordering Pakistan. The new tone from Tehran is a response to Pakistan's recent tilt back toward Saudi Arabia since Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran... 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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