By Kasturi Moitra* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
NEW DELHI (IDN | IDSA) - “Deception is an integral element of Chinese strategic culture”, noted Shyam Saran (former Foreign Secretary with the Government of India) at the second K. Subrahmanyam lecture series held in August 2012 at New Delhi.
At the same event, he also underscored the importance of being more conversant with the Chinese thought process for improving Indo-China relations. His counsel becomes even more relevant in the light of the recent friction between India and China over difference in interpretation of the border, resulting, recently, in a 19-km incursion in the Daulat Beg Oldi sector of the Depsang Valley in Ladakh.
By Eric Walberg* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
The parliamentary elections in Pakistan on May 12 may be described as historic in many ways. But what do the tea leaves tell us? Sharif is a logical heir to Pakistan’s tragic history, which continues to unfold, regardless of who sits on top. But if he can strike a peace accord with India and work with regional players – including Iran – and the US in Afghanistan, peace will break out, creating an economic boom across the region.
By Shastri Ramachandaran* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
NEW DELHI (IDN) - In a country of coups, where generals take precedence over political parties, democratic transition can be a fraught affair. So it is in Pakistan as it prepares to elect, on May 11, a new 342-member National Assembly and four provincial assemblies of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.
By Shastri Ramachandran* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
CHENNAI (IDN) - Some five weeks after the foreign policy fiasco on the US-sponsored resolution against Sri Lanka in the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) – which earned the Congress-led UPA government the hostility of all sections in Sri Lanka and the Tamil political parties in India – New Delhi seems to have gone back to sleep on the issue.
The March 21 resolution called upon Sri Lanka to conduct an independent investigation into allegations of violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law – during the final phase of the 26-year war, which came to an end after Sri Lanka's army defeated separatist Tamil rebels in 2009.
By Kalinga Seneviratne | IDN-InDepth News Analysis
SINGAPORE (IDN) - While the Anglo-American international media has been beating the war drums on North Korean leader Jong-un’s threats to fire missiles at American bases in the region, commentaries in Asian newspapers have focused on why nobody in the region wants war and that trouble makers must be quietly calmed down.
Late March, President Kim, approved a plan to attack the U.S. mainland, Hawaii and Guam if the United States attacks the country. The Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of North Korea's ruling party, listed U.S. military bases in Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Misawa, Aomori and Okinawa in Japan as potential attack targets.
By Zachary Fillingham* | IDN-InDepth NewsViewpoint
TORONTO (IDN) - For those in need of a refresher, here is the Cold War paradigm underpinning China-North Korean relations up until now. Historically speaking, a shared ideology has been at the core of their relationship. The two countries fought a war together in 1950 and have stood shoulder-to-shoulder against encroaching U.S. military power in East Asia throughout the sixty years that followed.
By Richard Johnson | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
LONDON (IDN) - As western powers debate unabatedly Tehran’s real intentions behind harnessing energy from the atom, Japan is willing to provide Iran technical advice, equipment support and vast experience of abiding by nonproliferation safeguards so that it may practice its right to peacefully use nuclear power, says a Japanese government official serving as research fellow at the Federation of American Scientists (FAS).
By Will Hickey* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
DAEJEON (IDN) - One reason behind greater pollution leading to global warming has been artificially lowered gas prices brought by subsidies. Governments have carried on this shortsighted policy to foster growth and satisfy consumers. But as world fuel prices begin rising again, the costs of subsidy – both budgetary and environmental – will come to the fore. While the much-talked-about carbon tax remains unpopular with consumers, curbing producer subsidies that encourage fossil fuel consumption could be a more effective way to fight environmental challenges.
By Mark Kapchanga* | IDN-InDepth NewsReport
NAIROBI (IDN) - Africa is turning out to be a new home for Chinese people. Four years after he entered Kenya, a Mr Liu says he may not head back to his rural home in East China's Fujian Province anytime soon.
Having taken part in the construction of the just completed Thika Superhighway, the father of three says he plans to open up a retail business or get another job in the country.
This worker represents the latest wave of Chinese migrants to Africa. To date, there have been more than 810,000. Lucrative earnings, coupled with enormous businesses opportunities, have motivated the majority to remain behind, despite their work permits expiring.
Some have also been drawn in by Africa's vast arable land, which they intend to turn into a gold mine.
Li Ruogu, chairman and president of the Export-Import Bank of China, once suggested that there was no harm in allowing Chinese farmers to leave the country to become farmers in Africa. He argued that the institution would support a migration that was investment-oriented.
By Murray Hunter | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
ARAU, Perlis (IDN | Geopoliticalmonitor.com) – A frequent traveller to Thailand who goes around the country today, couldn’t help but notice a rapid rise in the prominence of Muslims in the country, stretching from Chiang Rai in the north – right down to the south. Many of Thailand's 6-7 million Muslims are totally integrated into Thai culture and society, a country that takes great pride in its cultural homogeneity.
By Nilanthi Samaranayake* | IDN-InDepth NewsViewpoint
ALEXANDRIA, VA (IDN) - Is India’s influence declining in the ocean named after the country? That seems to be the conclusion of some analysts after Maldives' cancellation of an airport development contract with an Indian company in November 2012.
These concerns are elevated by China's increased engagement with smaller states in the Indian Ocean, including Maldives. Given the legacy of the 1962 war between China and India and ongoing competition for influence, New Delhi is right to have suspicions about Beijing’s intentions in its neighbourhood and whether smaller Indian Ocean countries are playing the two sides off each other.