EDITOR'S CHOICE

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Hasina is no Mujib


Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, exudes confidence. I visited Dhaka for the first time in April 1972, within four months of the birth of Bangladesh. Dhaka, then pronounced Dacca, was a small town, desperately... More

China will not fall into the ‘Thucydides Trap’ with India


The West’s notions of history and geography between Europe and Asia, are drenched in myriad cultural implications and can be traced back to ‘The Romance of Alexander’. This is a collection of essays mixing truth,... More

How China and Pakistan could lay the Road to Peace in Afghanistan


Referred to as an interminable and protracted war, the ongoing US-led war in Afghanistan is becoming a stalemate with no end in sight in the near or long term. Since the violence and bloodshed... More

Modi corrects course, woos farmers and poor


Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced an aggressive reachout to farmers and the poor in the new Budget, but analysts say it remains to be seen if this course correction will work. They say... More

China’s latest move in the graveyard of empires


The latest plot twist in the endless historical saga of Afghanistan as a graveyard of empires has thrown up an intriguing new chapter. For the past two months, Beijing and Kabul have been discussing... More

Modi’s embrace of Netanyahu and its consequences


In a much hyped visit, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu landed in India, for a five-day official visit on 14 January, with a large entourage of professionals and businessmen. The two countries agreed to... More

India’s Asian strategies are distinctly passé


The meeting between the foreign ministers of China and Japan – Wang Yi and Taro Kono – on Sunday in Beijing signifies the resumption of high-level exchanges after an interlude of two years. A series of... More

Indo-Pacific strategy fails to account for region’s historical ties


I recently attended the third Raisina Dialogue, hosted in New Delhi by India's Ministry of External Affairs and the Observer Research Foundation. India has been trying to forge the conference into an Indian version... More

Pakistan & China must undertake serious efforts to intensify their relationship


When in 1960 Mao Zedong sent off General Gengbiao, his second ambassador to Pakistan, he reportedly advised him: “Look after Pakistan; it is China’s window to the West”. Mao’s depiction may have been as much... More

How far will China go to achieve its military goals?


For those in India wondering how things would pan out with China, post-Doklam, the unmistakable message was given by President Xi Jinping himself: Military power will play a big role in China’s foreign policy. In... More

US creates Afghan transit route with counter-narrative in Central Asia


The US President Donald Trump made a significant diplomatic breakthrough in the Afghan war by getting Kazakhstan President Nurusultan Nazarbayev to commit at their meeting in the White House on January 16 to pledge... More

Revisiting Jammu and Kashmir


From time to time we are rudely reminded that there is an issue concerning the state of Jammu & Kashmir. The last reminder came on the night of 30-31 December 2017, when militants attacked... More

Why Gadkari is perfect interlocutor for Iran


Quietly, unobtrusively, on the eve of the visit by the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to India beginning this weekend, India made an assertive move in its West Asia policies that should not go... More

India needs to align with new reality in Indian Ocean


The uneasiness over the India - Maldives relations are unwarranted. The ripples in the Indian ocean are short term and inevitable for the fact that Maldives does have a strategic role to play and... More

Why businessman Trump is upset with Pakistan


The Indian media have ignored the momentous announcement by Pakistan’s central bank on January 2 notifying that it has taken “comprehensive policy related measures to ensure that imports, exports and financing transactions can be... More

From hope to despair in Myanmar


To say that 2017 was a year of disappointment for Myanmar would be a gross understatement considering the earlier sky-high expectations for peace, prosperity and democratic transformation. Many of those in the international community who... More

Time for an icebreaker on India-Pakistan relations


In the late 1960s, shortly after the India-Pakistan war, the official in the Ministry of External Affairs handling the Pakistan desk received a strange request during his meeting with the new Pakistan High Commissioner.... More

Trump’s grandstanding on national security could end in tragedy


None of the capitals singled out in the Trump administration’s National Security Strategy as being the United States’ prime adversaries – Moscow, Beijing, Tehran, Pyongyang – appear to feel particularly threatened by the fire... More

What does India’s interfence in domestic politics mean for Nepal?


The Commentariat New Delhi has a phalanx of experts observing the neighbours—Nepal-watchers, Bangladesh-watchers etc—and so the question, with all this ogling, why does India walk so regularly into the cross-border quicksand? One reason MEA-NSA-PMO get... More

The Gujarat voter has punctured BJP’s invincibility


A win is a win and a defeat is a defeat; but, sometimes, a win is less than a victory and a defeat is not exactly an ignominious loss. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)... More

Why India-Nepal ties are likely to worsen


The election victory of a coalition of two Communist parties in the recent elections in Nepal signals difficult days for Indo-Nepal relations. The coalition of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre) led by... More

COLUMN

Courage beyond compare

On Feb 13 at about 1210 hours an armoured cash-in-transit (CIT) vehicle of a private security services company was parked outside the Tarnol branch of Meezan Bank in Islamabad to pick up cash amounting to Rs. 14 million from the bank . As the two security guards, Supervisor Muhammad... More

International affairs in time of transparency: The Oxfam syndrome

The Oxfam infection has spread far and wide. Its impact is deeper than just one NGO facing problems about covering up sex abuse in Haiti and as we learn Chad as well.  Now reports are saying that sexual abuse cases are routine in the international development world which till... More

India cautious of its mediation and intervention in Maldives

Despite its reservations about the Abdulla Yameen regime in the Maldives, India does not appear to be responding to the call of the Maldivian opposition leader Mohamed Nasheed to initiate a “military-backed diplomatic initiative” to force Yameen to retract from his drastic actions against the judiciary. According to the Maldivian... More

The Afghan war can no longer be defined by Pak-US ties

While the US continues to do drone attacks in Pakistan, the diplomat spat between them hasn’t ended. On the contrary it seems to be widening as Pakistan continues its drift away from the US towards China and Russia. The gap is undoubtedly widening between the two erstwhile allies. While the... More

Khaleda Zia’s jail verdict will seriously impact on 2018 elections 

Sentencing BNP chief Begum Khaleda Zia to 5 years in jail triggers a fresh confrontational phase in Bangladesh politics, already deluged by hostility. It also makes the election, scheduled for December 2018, considerably uncertain about inclusive participation. Bangladesh’s experience with electoral politics has been miserable since birth and with... More

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Hasina is no Mujib

Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, exudes confidence. I visited Dhaka for the first time in April 1972, within four months of the birth of Bangladesh. Dhaka, then pronounced Dacca, was a small town, desperately trying to accommodate the demands of a sovereign state. There is no doubt that the... More

China will not fall into the ‘Thucydides Trap’ with India

The West’s notions of history and geography between Europe and Asia, are drenched in myriad cultural implications and can be traced back to ‘The Romance of Alexander’. This is a collection of essays mixing truth, epic drama and mythology, composed between the death of Alexander The Great in 323 B.C.,... More

How China and Pakistan could lay the Road to Peace in...

Referred to as an interminable and protracted war, the ongoing US-led war in Afghanistan is becoming a stalemate with no end in sight in the near or long term. Since the violence and bloodshed have been the most common phenomenon in an already war-torn region, the war is perhaps... More

Modi corrects course, woos farmers and poor

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced an aggressive reachout to farmers and the poor in the new Budget, but analysts say it remains to be seen if this course correction will work. They say it hinges on whether the government will be able to implement the schemes. It also... More

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READER'S VIEW

Gorkhaland, Mamata and the Chinese factor

Just a few days ago I warned two young student leaders in Darjeeling of West Bengal, against the violent movement which has started there for a separate Gorkhaland. I told them in no way should they support this demand. This has multifarious geo-political risks. If a Gorkhaland state is... More