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Showing posts from June 18, 2006

Sonia-CPM regime suits US

By M.D. Nalapat Words are cheap, it is deeds that count. Even while the CPI and the CPM weakly “protest” at the foreign policy of the UPA, the fact remains that both have joined with Sonia Gandhi. Is it any wonder that official America is in love with Sonia Gandhi and her chosen instrument, Manmohan Singh? Both have ensured—with the full backing of the CPM and the CPI—that the Government of India is today effectively directed by junior officials in this city, the same way as Iraq and Afghanistan are. Wherever one goes in Washington, whomever one meets who is in the policy establishment, the joy at getting a team in India that 100 per cent listens to US advice is visible.The hope here is that the BJP and the rest of the NDA will continue to wallow in their present confusion, so that the Sonia-Manmohan team can continue for a full 5-year term. It is a wish shared by Pervez Musharraf as well, who is looking forward to an Indian withdrawal from Siachen and Sir Creek, and the creation of

''Economic Brief: Fallout from Energy Trends''

Recent economic forecasts point to the emergence of new energy players on the global scene. Russia, though never fading completely from the world scene, is coming back with a new marketing brand as an energy supplier. Venezuela is catching world attention by its open defiance of the United States. The Central Asian states of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, and the Caspian littoral republic of Azerbaijan, have become key to energy diversity long sought by the West. Iran, too, can openly threaten the West and affect world energy and futures markets by using energy as a geopolitical weapon. In and of itself, these trends are nothing new -- OPEC used oil as a successful geopolitical tool in the 1970s, profoundly affecting the global economy. Today's major investment trends and calculations point to the accumulation of vast capital earned from oil sales in states that lack the developed, diversified economies of countries dependent on oil. Notwithstanding its growing oil revenues, Russia

COMPETING INTERESTS DIVIDE U.S. CHINA POLICY

By William R. Hawkins The National Security Strategy of the United States (NSS) released in March states, "The United States will welcome the emergence of a China that is peaceful and prosperous and that cooperates with us to address common challenges and mutual interests." President George W. Bush used the same phrase when meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao on April 20, adding that the two countries are "connected through a global economy that has created opportunity for both our peoples." In doing so, President Bush seemed to juxtapose economic cooperation with security concerns, a priority also mentioned in the NSS, which states, "Our strategy seeks to encourage China to make the right strategic choices for its people, while we hedge against other possibilities." These statements provided the impression of a unified concept animating U.S. policy. Events this spring, however, revealed the rivalry within the Bush administration between a "busi

CHINA'S BOOMING ENERGY RELATIONS WITH AFRICA

By Wenran Jiang With continuous economic growth averaging an astonishing annual rate of 10 percent over the past quarter century, China has transformed its landscape, become one of the largest economic powerhouses on earth, created development opportunities for its trading partners around the world and, in the process, generated huge demands for new sources of energy and other resources. Africa, on the other hand, has been left behind in the global quest for industrial modernization, economic prosperity and political stability. Yet, into Africa the Chinese are coming. They are coming for trade, investment and joint ventures, and they are consuming all the energy, minerals and other raw materials that the continent can offer. An Evolution of Traditional Sino-African Ties Africa's importance to China is reflected by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's ongoing tour of Africa. According to China's Ministry of Commerce, the seven countries on his itinerary—Egypt, Ghana, the Republic

CHINA AND THE SHANGHAI COOPERATION ORGANIZATION AT FIVE

By Stephen Blank It is an established fact among U.S. officials: the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is China's primary multilateral instrument to implement its openly anti-U.S. policy in Central Asia. The recently concluded fifth anniversary summit of the SCO in Shanghai confirmed its anti-U.S. proclivities. The SCO's communiqué reiterated its opposition to the "interference in other countries' internal affairs," a common euphemism used to describe Washington's calls for increased democratization in Central Asia. "Models of social development should not be 'exported,'" the joint declaration stated, implicitly reflecting the assessment by Moscow and Beijing that U.S. non-governmental organizations were behind the opposition movements and the "color revolutions" in Central Asia (People's Daily, June 15). In addition to its ideological inclinations, however, the summit also revealed interesting dynamics within the organiz

Naxal tit for Islamic tat: Sena

Statesman News Service MUMBAI, June 20: Marking the 40th anniversary of Shiv Sena, its chief Mr Bal Thackeray last night said he was ready to seek cooperation of Naxalites to fight Islamic terrorism in the country. “They (Naxalites) are Hindus. They have some social -economic issues for which they have taken to arms. When separatists are invited for talks in Delhi why do the government ignore Naxalites?” he asked. The Sena chief said the country faced bigger threat from Islamic separatists not only in Jammu and Kashmir but elsewhere in India. He called the rulers “eunuchs” for tolerating terrorism at the cost of national security. Mr Thackeray spoke for 10 minutes but came down heavily on the UPA government taking diktat from Mrs Sonia Gandhi. Explaining Shiv Sena’s stand on the reservation controversy, Mr Thackeray said distinction in jobs and education on caste basis would divide Hindus and would lead to disintegration of the country. He said reservation, if any, should be given

Asia's Dawning Multipolar System Increases Australia's Geopolitical Importance

Australia's geopolitical weight in global power relations is increasing. After the Cold War period, when the country was relegated to geostrategic marginality notwithstanding its solid alliance with the U.S.-led Western alliance, Canberra is now emerging as a new protagonist in the security framework of the Asia-Pacific and eastern Indian Ocean regions. There are two reasons for Australia's growing international importance. First, China's and India's rise as great powers are making Canberra's bi-maritime character more significant in the U.S.-India-China triangle. Washington needs reliable allies since a new Asian multipolar system is taking shape, with Beijing and New Delhi both beefing up their navies. Second, Australia's role in stabilizing the increasingly problematic Southeast Asian region is becoming vital. With Islamist separatist movements rising in Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines, regional instability may be seen as a window of opportunity b

China: Crisis and Implications

By George Friedman The Chinese government is continuing efforts to cope with its runaway economy. The People's Bank of China has raised interest rates. Banks have been told to curb lending. The government has said that it will implement procedures to rein in foreign acquisitions at low prices -- or, in other words, to block fire-sales of Chinese companies. As a recent headline in the Japan Times put it, "China's Monetary Surge Dooms Its Boom." A lot of things have gone into dooming China's boom, and the money surge is one of the more immediate problems. However, as we have argued (and this article should be read in the context of past analyses), the end of the Chinese boom was inevitable. The issue now is how all of this will play out in China and in the world. What must be understood is that China now is moving from an economic problem to a socio-political one. The financial problem is a symptom; the fundamental problem is that tremendous irrationality has be

Art 370 root cause of all problems: Joshi

http://www.dailyexcelsior.com/ web1/06june16/news.htm#2 Excelsior Special Correspondent JAMMU, June 15: Terming the Special Constitutional position a root cause of present crisis in Jammu and Kashmir State, the senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former Union HRD Minister, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi today said that this was the reason that his Party is demanding the abrogation of Article 370. Addressing a gathering of BJP activists from Delhi, Madhya Pradesh (MP), Tamil Nadu, Jammu at Parade Ground here on the last day of nine day long Satyagraha today before courting arrest, Dr Joshi strongly opposed the demands of self-rule, greater autonomy and demilitarization in J&K emanating from different quarters. He said Indian Constitution should be uniformly applied to all States of the country and there should be no special position to any State or unit. Referring to present Kashmir problem and the increasing attacks on the innocent people in Doda and other parts of the State, t