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The European Union, CAI, and the abyss
Jan 02, 2021

The European Union, CAI, and the abyss

The CAI — despite Ursula von der Leyen’s claim that it will help the EU defend multilateralism — is not multilateral at all. It is a bilateral d

The evidence on Syria is thin
Sep 03, 2013

The evidence on Syria is thin

Like about the Loch Ness Monster, we have only heard that the West has proof of the Assad regime using chemical weapons. But we've seen no credible testimony. For all one knows, it may have been the rebels' doing to instigate a US military response.

The F-16s and India-Pakistan-USA Relations
Apr 01, 2005

The F-16s and India-Pakistan-USA Relations

Fifteen years ago, the USA had promised to sell F-16s to Pakistan. Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, the company manufacturing the aircraft, took the necessary advance for it. Then there were sudden changes in the global and regional strategic environment. The Jehadi war in Afghanistan got over and Pakistan started diverting Jehadism into Jammu and Kashmir. The Cold war also was over.

The fallacy of Govt's tobacco taxation
Jul 09, 2014

The fallacy of Govt's tobacco taxation

The skewed tobacco taxation policy, far removed from a reality based understanding of the tobacco consumption and economics, is not helping the government achieve any goals. It is perhaps due to either a strong lobby, or the desire to protect 36 million beedi workers or just bad strategy.

The false debate on India's energy consumption
Nov 10, 2015

The false debate on India's energy consumption

Despite having among the largest coal reserves in the world, India lags far behind in consumption. The average Indian's coal consumption is around 20% that of the US citizen, and 34% of the average OECD citizen.

The faraway neighbour
Jul 17, 2013

The faraway neighbour

Recent developments in Bhutan reflect India's growing foreign policy challenges in the Neighbourhood. They are a reminder that many of the traditional assumptions of India's regional policy are no longer sustainable.

The fiasco that need not have been
Mar 10, 2010

The fiasco that need not have been

What Salman Bashir did was a scaled down version of what Musharraf did at the India Today Conclave a year ago in New Delhi and much more scaled down version of his antics at the Agra Summit. It should have been déjà vu.

The final burial of non-alignment
Nov 17, 2015

The final burial of non-alignment

India, which clung to non-alignment as its international identity since Independence, had little inclination for defence diplomacy. But now New Delhi is slowly moving away from a fastidious avoidance of military partnerships in the past to making security cooperation an important part of India's foreign relations now.

The flashpoint of South China Sea: Implications for India
Aug 03, 2012

The flashpoint of South China Sea: Implications for India

The age-old Chinese dictum of hiding one's capabilities and strategically biding time for an opportune moment seems to be fast eroding to make way for aggressive posturing by the Chinese especially in the South China Sea.

The foggy trend in Europe
May 19, 2012

The foggy trend in Europe

The return of a Socialist in France since Mitterand's victory in 1981 confirms a trend in Europe which, instead of lifting the mist, is adding to the fog. The other day in the UK, Labour had trounced the Conservatives in local bodies election across the country.

The four pillars of a safe city
Mar 20, 2013

The four pillars of a safe city

Defining safety in urban spaces as just one of physical protection is self-defeating as it presupposes the existence of only reactive action. The construction of safety in sheer physical terms reduces, and often completely eliminates, the possibility of proactive action.

The Fourth Trilateral Summit in Northeast Asia on a Mature Track
May 27, 2011

The Fourth Trilateral Summit in Northeast Asia on a Mature Track

On the sidelines of the trilateral Northeast Asian Summit in Tokyo, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and South Korean President Lee Myung Bak visited some of the worst affected areas in Fukushima and freely moved with the victims and publicly tasted vegetables and fruits to dispel the public fear about radiation.

The futility of the New Silk Route
May 01, 2012

The futility of the New Silk Route

A New Silk Road is magical thinking, given that Afghanistan remains a hotbed of instability plagued by daunting challenges. Lack of security has already delayed Tapi, the natural gas pipeline linking Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

The future is in urban India: Talbott
Sep 20, 2006

The future is in urban India: Talbott

India is witnessing a phenomenal increase in urbanisation and it is essential that this process is studied and analysed thoroughly to provide for a better quality of life, said Mr. Strobe Talbott, President of the Brookings Institution, while formally releasing ORF Mumbai Vision 2015: Agenda for Urban Renewal, published by Observer Research Foundation in ORF Mumbai on September 20.

The future of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation
Oct 17, 2014

The future of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

SCO members need to take a two-track approach to make it a successful regional grouping. At the macro level, it must forge a common vision and mutual trust with similar groupings such as the Collective Security Treaty Organization. At a micro level, bilateral and regional issues between member states need to be addressed.

The G-2 dilemma
Jun 11, 2013

The G-2 dilemma

The greatest impact of changing Sino-US relations will be on Asia, a primary theatre of interest for India. Beyond the simultaneous engagement with America and China, Delhi needs to deepen its partnership with its Asian friends and partners and raise India's own profile in the region.

The Game of chess
Nov 11, 2003

The Game of chess

Moves and counter-moves in Indo-Pak relations, like in a game of chess, continue to leave the actors in a mood to fight further. However, unlike in a game of chess, no endgame seems to be in the offing. This vicious circle of moves, counter moves, stalemate, warmongering, dialogues and so on is a direct impact of a precarious lack of an ultimate solution to the basic issue in Indo-Pak relations.

The gathering storm
Jul 20, 2013

The gathering storm

It is a troubled world that we live in today. However, so far India has been a sea of tranquility and it is too early to say if there is a link between the storm brewing on both flanks, but the security agencies, indeed the entire country, have a task on their hands.

The gathering storm
Jul 20, 2013

The gathering storm

Nuclear weapons, the ultimate symbol of power, are no assurance or guarantees against blowback from religious radicalism. Only when the State decides to put a stop to this and takes a lead against the beliefs and practices of radicalism, will society learn to follow and resist.

The General is helpless
Aug 03, 2005

The General is helpless

Two immediate observations can be made from Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's address to the nation on July 22, 2005. One, he is not willing to take strong and decisive action against extremist and terrorist groups in Pakistan. Two, he cannot take such an action.

The Geoeconomics of Climate Finance
Nov 22, 2021

The Geoeconomics of Climate Finance

The global climate finance architecture tends to restrain emerging economies from mobilising and accessing global private commercial capital for energy transition. This brief explores the different global financial regulations that influence climate capital flows between countries, and argues that institutions must enhance their role in facilitating the optimal allocation of capital. It evaluates the role of Multilateral Development Banks from a

The geopolitics of China's new energy route
Jun 20, 2013

The geopolitics of China's new energy route

China's new gas pipelines from Myanmar will provide an alternative route for Beijing to import energy supplies. This is important for China given US maritime supremacy in the region. But the strategic advantage that Beijing gains out of the pipelines in the long-term depends on developments inside Myanmar and China's relations with it.

The Global War Against Terrorism: A Progress Report
Feb 23, 2005

The Global War Against Terrorism: A Progress Report

The idea was to capture the different dimensions of the war on terror as has been perceived and to locate the war in the larger geo political context in order to appreciate and understand the consequences, according to Dr Ashley Tellis, a well-known senior US policy analyst.

The Global War against Terrorism: Are We Safer Today?
May 26, 2004

The Global War against Terrorism: Are We Safer Today?

There has rarely been a period in modern history, when the world has not been confronted with terrorism; somewhere or the other, in some form or another, for some reason or the other. As a mean of coercion through violence, terrorism ebbs and flows and keeps undergoing many mutations.

The Grand Illusion
Jul 29, 2006

The Grand Illusion

Eminent Indian nuclear scientists have been expressing their concern about the contents and direction of the Indo-US nuclear deal signed last July. Strategic analysts, former diplomats, prominent politicians and knowledgeable commentators have repeatedly cautioned the government about the minefields ahead. Ought not the government pause and clear these doubts? There is little effort towards this end, and we all seem to be running blind.

The great American betrayal
Mar 11, 2013

The great American betrayal

The Obama Administration is putting it out as though the withdrawal is a great achievement. But the reality is shoddier - we are witnessing yet another western retreat from Afghanistan, one that can have baleful consequences for others.

The Great Electoral Debate 2004: A Snapshot
Mar 29, 2004

The Great Electoral Debate 2004: A Snapshot

The forthcoming general election is being watched with bated breath and ever increasing curiosity by different observers. Although the election arithmetic remains more or less the same as it was in 1999, the sheer intensity in which the election is being fought and the issues that are being contested in the public debate may have some implications on the future of Indian politics.

The great Indian strangulation trick
Jul 20, 2011

The great Indian strangulation trick

In a stratagem that would make Sun Tzu proud, the government first velvet-gloved an iron fist and then clamped down hard on digital freedom and enterprise

The Great Power Game still continues
Feb 02, 2012

The Great Power Game still continues

Closer home, the Great Power Game will be played in the unstable fields of Ayatollahs' Iran, a Talibanised Afghanistan, whose leaders have their own world view, and a Sunni radicalised nuclearised Pakistan. The main contestants will be China and the US and our strategic planners may have to start planning for an uncertain future.

The greatest show on Earth
May 15, 2014

The greatest show on Earth

Narendra Modi, who is projected by the exit polls done by the media to become the next prime minister, will have to embellish his strong governance image where he has to be fair and seen to be fair in his actions. If winning an election was tough, governance and delivery in India is going to be much tougher.

The Growing Chinese Assertiveness at Seas
Oct 20, 2010

The Growing Chinese Assertiveness at Seas

There is no doubt that the Chinese have overcome their earlier phase of "biding time" and have started taking a more assertive and at times more aggressive posture at sea. A pattern that is also being witnessed in other spheres as well.

The growing narcotrafficking in Central Asia
Jul 20, 2022

The growing narcotrafficking in Central Asia

A crackdown on narcotrafficking in Central Asia seems imperative as the recent Taliban takeover of Afghanistan and the Ukraine crisis has worsened the

The Hague-Delhi Initiative on Global Governance
Nov 22, 2012

The Hague-Delhi Initiative on Global Governance

Observer Research Foundation (ORF) and the Hague Institute for Global Justice (THIGJ) recently hosted the second workshop of 'The Hague Initiative on Global Governance' in New Delhi between 21st and 23rd November, 2013.

The Hajj - One-way ticket to heaven?
Sep 28, 2015

The Hajj - One-way ticket to heaven?

The tragedy last week snuffed out over 750 lives and injured over 800 pilgrims, during the annual Hajj ritual of stoning the Devil at Mina, a few kilometres from Mecca. This incident again highlights a recurring theme that has dogged the Hajj for hundreds of years.

The heavy burden of defying conventional wisdom
Aug 04, 2012

The heavy burden of defying conventional wisdom

People's power, if not checked, would devour all Monarchies unless "all of us clasp each other's hands". That is when Al Jazeera traded its credibility to join the regional Jihad. Because of this summersault, the network has been the most effective tool in Libya and Syria.

The huge size of undereducated youth in the workforce needs to be addressed
Jun 07, 2012

The huge size of undereducated youth in the workforce needs to be addressed

A large mass of uneducated and undereducated would become part of the labour force over the next decade, adding to the potential of the mid-career education market. Neither the government nor the private sector seems to be gearing up for this opportunity.

The hypocrisy of Tamil outrage
Jun 06, 2014

The hypocrisy of Tamil outrage

Hypocrisy of the political leadership of all hues in Tamil Nadu is completely exposed if we focus on the refugee issue. There are presently over 1,20,000 Tamil refugees living in India. Of this, nearly 70,000 still live either in the hundred odd general (open) or the three special (closed) refugee camps in Tamil Nadu.

The IBSA Moment
Jul 22, 2013

The IBSA Moment

India, currently the chair of IBSA (India, Brazil and South Africa), is responsible for steering the agenda for trilateral collaboration. In its capacity as chair, it is incumbent upon India to revitalise the geopolitical group, which has been so central to the construct of "South-South Cooperation" that engages most political thinkers today.

The ideal solution for an ideal world
Nov 17, 2015

The ideal solution for an ideal world

As the International Court of Justice at The Hague moves forth with proceedings on the cases involving India and Pakistan, it is worth considering whether a decision in favour of the Republic of Marshall Islands would truly be the beginning of a new era.

The importance of being Raheel Sharif
Nov 02, 2015

The importance of being Raheel Sharif

After PM Nawaz Sharief's visit to the US, now General Raheel Sharif will be visiting the country. Gen. Sharif has seemingly controlled terror emanating from FATA, has restored the image of the Army after the setbacks during the time of his predecessors Musharraf and Kayani. He runs a quasi-independent judicial system.