August 04, 2006

''Angela Merkel's Policy Toward China''

he first visit of Angela Merkel as the German chancellor to China in May 2006 revealed some significant issues in Sino-German relations. The German media was almost unanimous in its observation that the visit of Chancellor Merkel was aimed at "balancing" among some pertinent issues: garnering Chinese support in dealing with Iran; presenting herself differently than her Social Democratic predecessor, Gerhard Schroeder, a known friend of China; maintaining and intensifying the level of the impressive bilateral trade (US$63.2 billion in 2005); and discussing human rights issues with the Chinese leadership.

What was distinctly missing in the deliberations before and during the visit was discussions on the European Union arms embargo on China, a long-standing Chinese grievance against the European body. Schroeder had been a great supporter of lifting the arms embargo that was sanctioned in the aftermath of the Tiananmen Square incidents in 1989. It even appeared in the beginning of 2005 that the European Union might lift the embargo. A transatlantic disagreement and European disunity, however, did not facilitate the realization of the Chinese demand.

Yet a shift in the Chinese approach and in public deliberations regarding the embargo is in tune with the change of leadership in Berlin. The Chinese president, Hu Jintao, who visited three European countries (Britain, Germany and Spain) in November 2005, met outgoing Chancellor Schroeder and Merkel, who was at that time the chancellor-designate from the Christian Democratic Union (C.D.U.). The issue of the arms embargo did not arise in official deliberations. For President Hu, the visit was more for first-hand personal knowledge about the new chancellor.

Although the post of the German foreign minister, as per the coalition agreement, went to Frank-Walter Steinmeier of the S.P.D. and a close aide of Schroeder, major foreign policy initiatives still remain the prerogative of the chancellor. The C.D.U.'s opposition to lifting the arms embargo was already known to the Chinese government. It was, therefore, quite comprehensible that the Chinese, in anticipation, had not raised the issue of the arms embargo, at least not in public, before or during this latest visit by Chancellor Merkel.

Pertinent Issues

The importance that Germany attaches to non-proliferation in the present global context is evidence that Iran has always remained on top of the agenda in its deliberations with the senior, transatlantic partner, the United States. As the E.U.-3 (Britain, France and Germany) has been negotiating with Iran steadfastly, it is also required for Germany to create a broader understanding not only with the United States and Russia, but with China, the Asian member of the U.N. Security Council. The first visit of Chancellor Merkel to Asia, and specifically to China, may therefore be seen from this viewpoint. In fact, the weight that Germany (although not a member of the U.N. Security Council) has recently gained individually in this regard and in the negotiations within the E.U.-3 is quite clear considering Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wrote only to Chancellor Merkel apart from the United States to explain the Iranian position.

The issue of human rights in China has also been a significant component in the Sino-German bilateral relationship. Yet it is also an ongoing process as both the countries initiated a Dialogue on Rule of Law in 1999. Reform of the Chinese judicial system (i.e., its standardization with the international system) has already been dealt within the framework of this dialogue. Moreover, the issue of human rights is also being dealt within the E.U.-China Human Rights Dialogue. The latest round was concluded on May 25-26 in Vienna under the last Austrian presidency and scheduled to be held again in China under the present Finnish E.U. presidency.

Intellectual Property Rights

Nevertheless, as far as German trade interests are concerned, observance of Intellectual Property Rights (I.P.R.) by Chinese companies seemed to have become the main thrust of the visit. In fact, well before in February 2006, during his first visit to China, the German Foreign Minister Steinmeier set the tone for the visit of Chancellor Merkel. For the first time, theft of technological know-how, piracy and unlicensed copying of German products by Chinese firms have been protested strongly at the official level. However, the two-line statement issued by the Chinese Foreign Ministry on February 22, after the meeting between Steinmeier and Wen Jiabao, did not mention the issue, of course to maintain the cozy trade relationship.

The strong emphasis on I.P.R. during the visit of Merkel may, therefore, be considered in this context. Obviously, there was a strong demand on Merkel by German industry as it believes that in the near future Chinese firms will compete with them in the technology sector. Quoting a confidential report prepared by the Asia-Pacific Committee of the German Federation of Industries, Matthias Schepp wrote in Der Stern on May 22 that the euphoria about China has withered away among the German leaders of industry and higher management. As the main reasons are unfair competition and piracy in China, Schepp cited specific instances of affected German companies like Adidas, Puma, among others.

Therefore, at the beginning of the visit, Merkel also made it clear in an interview that Germany has nothing to "give away" and also expects that an emerging country (like China) has to pay reasonably (for what it wants). German apprehension, however, was brought out clearly in her speech at the German Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, where she underscored that German technological know-how has been the security for German prosperity. The German seriousness to deal with this issue was also clear when Merkel announced that Germany, during its presidency of the G-8 in 2007, wants to address the problem within the framework of the G-8.

The I.P.R. issue also received attention in the ongoing German-Chinese Dialogue on Rule of Law. The annual symposium that took place in the northern Chinese city of Xian coincided with the visit and underscored the need for effective protection of intellectual property. Quite understandably, the two-year program for 2006-2007 on Sino-German exchange in the legal sector has, for the first time, included the issue of I.P.R. Although the Chinese leadership has assured that they would address the issue, there are many skeptics, such as Eberhard Sandschneider, director of the Research Institute of German Society for Foreign Policy. Sandschneider finds the Chinese leadership tolerant toward the theft of technological know-how by Chinese firms who want to become globally competitive.


Apart from trade relations and the situation of human rights in China, I.P.R. has become the most significant issue in recent Sino-German dialogue, thus putting the arms embargo on the backburner. Yet, it is near certain that Germany will use the opportunity of its presidencies of the G-8 and the E.U. in 2007 to find a concrete outcome of their effort. In the coming months, it is therefore a challenge for the new government in Berlin to protect the interests of German companies in China without being too critical in public. On the other hand, whether the issue of I.P.R. eventually leads the German companies to assess China as a reliable partner depends mostly on the Chinese government. The coming E.U. and G-8 presidencies of Germany will certainly be eventful in all aspects -- not only concerning the European Union and transatlantic relations, but in relations with China as well.

Report Drafted By:
Alok Rashmi Mukhopadhyay

The Power and Interest News Report (PINR) is an independent organization that utilizes open source intelligence to provide conflict analysis services in the context of international relations. PINR approaches a subject based upon the powers and interests involved, leaving the moral judgments to the reader. This report may not be reproduced, reprinted or broadcast without the written permission of All comments should be directed to


Shri Om Prakash Agarwal, representing a private TV Channel from Bangalore and Shri Damodar, Sewa Bharati and a resident of Tadepalligudem, were illegally detained by TTD's (A)Dharma Reddy and the Vigilance Officer, Nagur Reddy for 36 Hrs and badly manhandled.

On Saturday, 30/07/2006, Shri Om Prakash Agarwal, from Bangalore along with a guide from Tadepalli Gudem, Shri Damodar reached Tirumala to take video of the pictures of "cross" painted on certain homes and places in Balaji Nagar, Tirumala.

The 'locals' prevented them from taking the videos, detained them and handed them over to Nagur Reddy, Vigilance Officer of the TTD with the complaint that they were the ones who drew the pictures in the first place.

The TTD Vigilance officer, Nagur Reddy and the Special Officer, (A)Dharma Reddy detained the two of them "illegally" for over 36 hours and it is said that the two were kicked about in abdomen with booted legs, threatening them with a loaded revolver in hand, to "admit" that they drew the cross, while the truth is that they came to record on video the "cross" paintings on the Holy Hill. I am told that the treatment meted out to these two Hindus would put the Americans "handling" their detainees to shame and Shri Agarwal I am told is badly bruised. The two officials seized the recorded cassettes which I am told are explosive evidence of evangelism in Tirumala Hills. They have returned the Video equipment to Shri Agarwal.

It appears that the two were then handed over to police after 36 hrs of illegal detention by the TTD and now the police have stated that there is no evidence to prove that these two were the ones who "painted the cross" at Balaji Nagar and have 'released' them after "interrogation". I spoke to Shri Om Prakash Agarwal today and verified these facts.

The locals in Tirupati and the Sangha Parivar have gone on a Dharna outside the office of the Asst Suptd of Police.

I sincerely feel that in case of embarking on such future adventures, the local press which is sympathetic to the cause of our agitation should be taken into confidence and taken along with us so the TTD or the police will not venture into such adventurism.

It should be noted that the current disposition of both the TTD and the AP Government is to lay the blame squarely on BJP and the Sangha Parivar for "concocting" rumours of evangelism in Tirumala. Even the CM has gone on record blaming the BJP for creating mischief for political gains.

I understand from Shri Agarwal that he is sending legal notices to (A)Dharma Reddy, Nagur Reddy of TTD with copies to the Chief Justice of AP High Court, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India as also moving the National Human Rigts Commission on this issue. I have assured him of all support on behalf of our Hindu Samaj.

S V Badri
Wednesday, 04 Aug, 2006

Statement of Dr. Subramanian Swamy on the Justice Pathak Report

Subject: Press Release

Statement of Dr. Subramanian Swamy on the Justice Pathak Report

The Justice Pathak Report under submission to the PM
has, according to the deliberate leaks from officialdom, indicted Mr.
Natwar Singh and exonerated the Congress Party of any prima facie
guilt. India has seen such staged dramas of whitewashing and finding
scapegoats many times before, e.g., the Commissions of Inquiry on

I had closely worked with Natwar Singh in 1998-99 and
can say that he is incapable of taking any decision on any matters
without the prior and clear direction from Ms. Sonia Gandhi. Hence, it
is wholly farcical for the Pathak Inquiry body to find him solely
responsible for the stinking and shameful Oil-for Food scandal that
happened in collusion with the world's most greedy dictator Saddam
Hussein . The UN's official Volcker Committee had indeed in print
reported that Congress Party as a separate entity had been a non
contractual [favoured non-business] recipient of voucher no. M/10/57
that entitled the Congress to zero--cost ownership of a million plus
barrels of Iraqi oil. This entitlement was sold to the well known
pardoned criminal and Israeli agent Marc Rich owned Masefield AG oil
trading company which in turn sold it in the international market to
an Italian company for a profit of $ 30 million less the payment to
the Congress. Where has all that booty gone ? I have already supplied
the ED with New York, Swiss and Cayman Island accounts held illegally
by Ms. Sonia Gandhi, her son and Satish Sharma which may show the
deposits. The PNs sold in the Mumbai stock market by Fidelity
Investments of USA may give more leads. I had also filed a private
complaint with the CBI, which acknowledged the receipt of the same by
a letter dated December 1, 2005, but has yet to register a FIR.

Now that the Government has decided to amend the Cr.PC
to allow plea bargain, I suggest to Mr. Natwar Singh to stop being a
'halal chicken' and make a clean breast of it all under this
provision. He should explicitly put the blame where it must
justifiably rest: on Sonia alias Antonia Maino Gandhi of Italy. [end

Govt under fire in Parliament

Press Trust Of India
Posted online: Friday, August 04, 2006 at 1404 hours IST
Updated: Friday, August 04, 2006 at 1412 hours IST

New Delhi, August 4: Seizing the chance to turn the table on the
ruling Congress, a belligerent BJP today led the Opposition onslaught
in Parliament over the "leakage" of the Pathak panel report and
launched an attack levelling corruption charges against Sonia Gandhi.

Being at the receiving end for the past week over the 'mole' issue,
the BJP was on the offensive to pin down the government both in Lok
Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

The surcharged members from the BJP stormed the Well raising slogans
against Gandhi. The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day shortly
after noon following uproarious scenes.

In Lok Sabha, Speaker Somnath Chatterjee allowed an impromptu
discussion after Opposition members attacked the government over the
"leakage" of the report ahead of its tabling in Parliament.

The response by Parliamentary Affairs Minister P R Dasmunsi that
government has not leaked the report only drew vociferous protests
from the Opposition benches. The BJP members marched to the Well and
promptly the Speaker adjourned the House till 1500 hours.

The Pathak inquiry in its report submitted to Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh yesterday indicted Natwar Singh and his son Jagat for "misusing"
their position for procurement of contracts in the UN oil-for-food
programme in Iraq but gave a clean chit to the Congress.

The BJP and other Opposition members have strongly contended that the
Congress party, which has been named along with Natwar Singh as a
non-contractual beneficiary, could not be let off the hook without

August 01, 2006

RSS is secular - Jamaat-e-Islami leader
8/1/2006 2:10:37 AM Pioneer News Service | Kochi

The recent remarks of a Jamaat-e-Islami leader hailing the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh as a 'secular outfit having a national outlook' and describing the CPI(M) as an intolerant political party have spearheaded fresh controversy. Observers see this move as a retreat of Jamaat-e-Islami from the left forces.

The Jamaat had joined hands with the Left Democratic Front in the recently concluded Assembly elections, to 'save the minorities from the Hindu fanatic organisations like the RSS'.

In an article, C Dawood, a State committee member of the Students Islamic Organisation (SIO), the student wing of Jamaat, has also criticised the CPI(M) as the 'most intolerant' political party in the country.

The article appeared in the latest issue of Madhyamam, a weekly published by the Noble Charitable Trust, a charitable organisation, mooted by the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind. The article has been written as a reply to another article penned by Marxist writer KEN Kunjahammed, appeared in Deshabhimani, the mouthpiece of the CPI(M). The article begins with a note that 'this is a reaction of a Muslim fundamentalist'. The SIO leader observes that in history, secularism has created more bloodshed than the religious organisations.

"Religion has not created any Paul Pot, Joseph Stalin or Anwar Hoja, they were produced in the 'kitchen' of Communism". In the remaining part, he says that intolerance has been synonymous with the Communists. The CPI(M) has been intolerant even to their left allies, and it was the Marxists who contributed a word 'party village' to the dictionary.

He says that secularism is a western concept, evolved through another idea of nationalism. The Jamaat leader goes on to say that in this aspect, the RSS could be called a secular outfit having a national outlook. A left fellow traveller observed that these remarks have brought out the real face of Jamaat-e-Islami. "Even though they profess anti-imperialism and anti-globalisation slogans and align with the left in the agitations against the ill effects of globalisation, their ultimate basis is anti-national," he said. Responding to this, a prominent Sunni leader said this should be viewed as an attempt to paint the face of a liberal muslim.

"They are deliberately trying to renounce the image of a 'Muslim fundamentalist. But, however, they could not easily forswear the ideals of their founder Moulana Moudoodi, who stood for an Islamic nation," he said.

While, a prominent Mujahid leader said that the existence of Jamaat-e-Islami was based on Islamic State and by supporting RSS, they have denounced it.

India's Hidden Civil War: Consequences for Energy Security Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, an Oxford and Cambridge-trained economist not giv

India's Hidden Civil War: Consequences for Energy Security

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, an Oxford and Cambridge-trained economist not given to careless exaggeration, recently referred to a domestic political crisis as "the single biggest internal security challenge ever faced by our country". Yet despite the longtime prominence of this problem within India and its potentially catastrophic effects on India's energy sector, many energy analysts outside of India are unaware of its existence. The security challenge in question is posted by the Naxalites, a loosely organized group of "Maoists" who now have an estimated 20,000 soldiers under arms and are waging a war against the Indian state, terrorizing and destabilizing much of the Indian countryside. The success or failure of their campaign against the government will have profound consequences for India's stability, and, most particularly, its energy security. For the Naxalite insurgency is strongest precisely in the areas of India with the richest natural resources, especially the coal which powers the Indian economy.

Singh's blunt statement brought rare foreign coverage (including a New York Times article, which described the struggle as "looking increasingly like a civil war") to the Naxalite rebellion, which has festered for more than three decades in India's countryside. While the struggle is taking place far from Delhi's glitzy new suburbs or Bangalore's booming technology hub, its effects are increasingly being felt across India.

The motivations behind the Naxalite rebellion are complicated and are influenced by many local factors – and many "Naxalites" are merely criminals and mercenaries who have adopted a revolutionary pose for strategic reasons, But in essence, the core of Naxalite rebellion can be seen as a response by many India's poor (particularly in tribal communities) against a perceived expropriation of their natural resources by the Indian state. India's "coal mafias" largely control the industry, notorious for its poor infrastructure and corruption, while union leaders, mine managers and politicians routinely skim substantial profits from India's state-owned coal companies. Meanwhile the poor, largely tribal communities that make up much of the heart of India's coal country see precious little of the profits while suffering substantial environmental destruction and feeling the effects of public corruption.

The Naxalites have at least some presence in almost half of India's twenty-eight states, and in some of the poorer and most heavily tribal states, particularly Chhattisgarh, Andra Pradesh, Orrissa, Jharkand and West Bengal they are a major political force. These five states account for approximately 85% of India's coal resources, and continued disruption and deterioration of the political environment in could have profound consequences for both India and its neighbors. Coal constitutes approximately 55% of India's current primary energy supply and approximately 75% of it's electricity generation, and a prolonged or excessively costly resource war in these states could cripple the Indian economy and alter the global import balance if India had to look elsewhere for energy resources.

In other words, while the U.S. worries about imported oil, which makes up roughly a quarter of U.S. primary energy supply, Naxalism puts almost half of India's total energy supply is at serious political risk. Much of the problem lies with the fact that the government of India owns the subsurface rights to all minerals including coal, a fact which infuriates the destitute tribal communities. Organizations such as the South Asian Intelligence Review have noted a high correlation between those districts with high natural resources, particularly coal and iron, and those districts facing Naxalite violence.

In recent months and years, there have been an increasing number of direct attacks by Naxalite rebels on the energy industry. Naxalites recently killed coal mine security officers in Chhattisgarh and last December, they burned vehicles from a coal survey team the Mineral Exploration Corporation of India. In a coal rich region of Andra Pradesh, Naxalites destroyed vast quantities of mining equipment in one of the state's most coal rich districts. In February, an explosive Depot (used for mining) in Chhattisgarh run by the National Mineral Development Corporation was attacked by rebels who killed eight members of the security force while making off with tons of ammunition.

And the Naxalite energy-related violence is expanding—India's Oil and Natural Gas Company (ONGC) has recently dramatically beefed up security at its facilities in Jharkand and Eastern Coalfields Limited, Central Coalfield's limited, Singareni Coalfields Limited and Neyveli Lignite Corporation, have all boosted security in response to warnings from government officials about Naxalite attacks. Meanwhile, Chhattisgarh's government last year signed almost $3 billion in agreements to build power plants and other energy-related infrastructure. But such agreements will surely be at risk (particularly those involving multinationals) if the violence does not cease. Naxalites frequently levy their own "taxes" on resource extraction on districts they control and many more ideological Naxalites are opposed to the development of additional coal mines and power plants at any price.

I recently spent a week in India's remote Chhattisgarh state, described by the Times as "the deadliest theater of the war" and while I attempted to see coal mining operations, my guide refused to take me on account of the extreme danger in coal-mining and production areas. While our surroundings were outwardly placid, we could not travel at night, and our overall itinerary and visit were dramatically truncated because of the danger of armed attacks. It was clear that rebel groups controlled much of the countryside, where according to numerous accounts, they essentially run a parallel government and administration. The local newspapers were filled daily with accounts of fatal battles between Naxalites and government forces. In parts of many districts, government officials have not visited for years, in fear of their lives.

The intensifying civil war in parts of India's countryside will have profound effects not just for India's energy security, but for the global economy as well. The growing Naxalite insurgency will bear close scrutiny over the coming months—and continued deterioration of security in India's coal heartland could have a significant impact on energy security in India and beyond.

Jeremy Carl, a former resident of New Delhi whose research focuses on energy in India and China, is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources, Stanford University.

July 30, 2006

State-sponsorship of terrorism :How to make Pakistan pay a price

How to make Pakistan pay a price for its State-sponsorship of terrorism against India?

Through covert action, which is deniable para-political and para-military action meant to make Pakistan's sponsorship prohibitively costly to it. Such a covert action would be directed against the Pakistan State and society and not against the terrorists. Covert actions do not produce quick results. They are gradual in their impact. They have to be well-prepared, well-executed and kept sustained.
The liberation of Bangladesh in 1971 was preceded by nearly a decade of covert action in the then East Pakistan at the political, para-political, cultural and other levels in order to create large pockets of alienation against the Central Government and generate feelings of separateness between the people of West and East Pakistan. If we had not prepared the ground carefully for 10 years, the success would not have come so decisively in 1971.

How Rich Country NGOs use "ethics" to target Indian jobs

When PETA US launched its original boycott of Indian leather in 2000, more than 40 major retailers around the world agreed to boycott Indian leather. The Indian leather industry lost an estimated $68 million as a result of these companies’ decisions.

A $68 million loss translates to approximately 65,000 jobs lost, most from the poorest segments of Indian society.