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Showing posts from August 5, 2007

US worried over loose nukes in Pakistan

12 Aug 2007, 0221 hrs IST,Chidanand Rajghatta ,TNN WASHINGTON: The United States is having anxiety attacks over the prospect of loose nukes in strife-torn Pakistan, even as India seems unperturbed by it. An ongoing security review of the evolving situation in Pakistan by the US reveals that Washington has full knowledge about the location of Pakistan's nuclear weapons, but it is not certain who might start controlling them if there is a shift in power. In an intriguing story, CNN reported on Friday that beleaguered military ruler Pervez Musharraf "controls the loyalty of the commanders and senior officials in charge of the nuclear program, but those loyalties could shift at any point." Musharraf's control over the military remains limited to certain top commanders and units, raising worries about whether he can maintain control over the long term, CNN said, citing intelligence analysis that is part of a broader security review of Pakistan, undertaken amid the tu

It is a practical solution that meets all our requirements

— Photo: N. Sridharan “It is a practical solution that meets all our requirements” T.S. Subramanian Anil Kakodkar, Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, says the ‘123’ agreement between India and the United States on nuclear cooperation “is a practical way forward. So it is satisfactory.” In an interview toThe Hinduin Mumbai on August 6, he clarified that the agreement provides for a possibility of transfer of reprocessing, enrichment, and heavy water technologies but it would require an amendment. Excerpts: Anil Kakodkar: “The unilateral voluntary moratorium [on testing] we have, remains as such. There is no conversion of that into a bilateral legality.” What compelled the Department of Atomic Energy to go in for this ‘123’ agreement with the United States when it is on course with its indigenous three-stage nuclear power programme? Where is the need to import light water reactors (LWRs)? The fundamen

India as a maritime power

Cooperation at sea in the country’s interests by Premvir Das Without much fuss or fanfare, but showing both determination and consistency, India has moved swiftly in the last few years to establish its position as a major player in the Indian Ocean region. The new proactive strategy first took root with the increasing spectrum and quality of the Malabar series of naval exercises between elements of the Indian and US navies. Starting with basic activities such as search and rescue, replenishment at sea and the like, Malabar has now reached a level where both sides deploy their frontline ships, including aircraft carriers and submarines, and strive towards higher degrees of interoperability. It is not being suggested that these are on a par with the way in which the US and NATO navies operate and that is not possible given the equipment disparities in the two sides, or even desirable given the different motivations which guide the two relationships. However, the fact that the quantu

India should look at the world as an emerging power

by K. Subrahmanyam The Indian political leadership over the last 60 years should be given credit for steering the country's foreign policy in the best national interests of the country. They foresaw in time the onset of the Cold War and kept India out of the two confronting power blocs. As the Cold War came to an end and it was realised that economic liberalisation and joining the globalisation process will put India on a high growth trajectory. India switched to a policy of engagement with all major powers in a balance- of-power world. India realised that it was in a position to play the role of one of the six balancers of power in the international system. This switch-over started with Narasimha Rao and was pursued more vigorously by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, especially after the "Shakti" tests. Manmohan Singh has continued the Vajpayee policy of putting India in an appropriate place in the emerging international bal

Kashmir: My Experience in Srinagar

By Stephen Knapp It had been several years since I had first wanted to go to Kashmir until I was finally able to visit in June of 2007. I had almost traveled to Srinagar and made arrangements to go once before, but then a few days later the Kargil war broke out, and that stopped that idea. The violence and terrorism in the area made it restricted or not recommended to foreigners for years, and most Indians stayed away as well. But things had changed since then, and though warnings were still posted by the U. S. State Department about entering the region, I made my way up into Kashmir. The trip up into Kashmir and seeing the landscape was enjoyable, the beauty of the hills and mountains was great. When I got to Srinagar, I was surprised to find the place was packed with Indian tourists. Of course, it was the hot season and temperatures had soared in the plains and cities like Delhi and Mumbai, so many Indian tourists were looking for places to escape the heat

Russia and the thrust on Asian policy Saturday, August 11, 2007 OPINIONS Ali KÜLEBİIt is obvious that the assertive period started with Putin has fully made the Russian Federation that was formerly exhausted enter a new phase. Have successfully put its foreign policy together with energy as an instrument, Putin has taken successful steps on his Asian policy. Although Turkey, not the Russian Federation, could have been the initiator of an international organization such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) to be a center of political power in Asia, it was Putin who established such an organization successfully. It should also be mentioned that the possibility of using the organization against the U.S. in Asia would make the SCO more important, which in turn could change the balances especially in Asia in the course of time. While talking about Russian policy on Asia, it would be wrong to skip that the Russian influence especially in Central

Hugo Chávez Editorial

Saturday, Aug 11, 2007 By: Ignacio Ramonet - Le Monde Diplomatique Few governments in the world have been victims of devastating campaigns full of hatred. The Venezuelan government, led by President Hugo Chávez, is one of those victims. His enemies have tried everything: Coup d’État, oil strike, flow of capital, plots… After the attack against Fidel Castro, a similar situation has not ever happened in Latin America. The most miserable lies have been said about Chávez, all of them orchestrated by the new propaganda office called -National Endowment for Democracy, Freedom House, financed by Bush Administration. With unlimited financial resources, this lying machine manipulates important media and organizations for the defense of Human Rights which are at the service of sinister plans. Likewise, part of the social-democrat left-branched party surrender before these groups of liars. Why so much hate? Nowadays, the social-democracy in Europe is experiencing a crisis of identity. Th

Chavez Meets with Kirchner and Morales in Bolivia for Closer Cooperation

Saturday, Aug 11, 2007 By: Chris Carlson - Mérida, August 11, 2007 (— In the final leg of his South American tour this week, Venezuela President Hugo Chavez arrived to Bolivia last night to sign several economic agreements with Bolivian President Evo Morales as well as with Argentinean President Nestor Kirchner who was also present. The new regional agreements, according to Chavez, are part of a project to unite and integrate the region into a South American block of nations. "We continue strengthening the integration of the South," said Chavez upon arriving in Bolivia. "More than the integration, the union of the South. That is what we are doing, forming a South American political block as a counterweight to the hegemonic pretensions of North America or any other hegemonic pretension," he said. Chavez is finishing a four-country tour of South America, where he signed agreements to increase economic integration betwe

U.S. Concerns about Pakistani Nukes after Musharraf

U.S. Concerns about Pakistani Nukes after Musharraf - A Failure to Understand Political Dynamics in Pakistan Sources: U.S. assessing Pakistan nukes if Musharraf falls From Barbara Starr CNN Washington Bureau, CNN: August 10, 2007 Story Highlights U.S. concerned about who would control Pakistan's nukes after power shift; Pakistan's president ponders state of emergency as his opposition grows; Pakistan troops moving to tribal areas of Afghan border, officials say; Musharraf's control over military remains limited to certain top commanders WASHINGTON (CNN) -- U.S. military intelligence officials are urgently assessing how secure Pakistan's nuclear weapons would be in the event President Gen. Pervez Musharraf were replaced as the nation's leader, CNN has learned. Key questions in the assessment include who would control Pakistan's nuclear weapons after a shift in power. The United States is pressuring Musharraf, who took control in a 1999 coup, not to decla

It is a legitimate democratic right to kill Taslima Nasreen?

The Pioneer, Aug 11, 2007 [from]Unfortunate we couldn't kill Taslima, says Majlis Omer Farooq | Hyderabad MIM brazenly justifies violence: We're proud of assault on author Akbaruddin Owaisi, the floor leader of Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) in the Andhra Assembly on Friday said, "It is legitimate to kill Taslima Nasreen under Islamic law, but unfortunately we could not do it". He was reacting to Thursday's attack on Bangladeshi writer Taslima by Majlis men and MLAs. MIM president and former Member of Parliament Salahuddin Owaisi lauded his party legislators and workers for targeting Taslima stating that she had insulted Islam and Muslims all over the world and she was still continuing her mission enjoying the hospitality of the Left Government in West Bengal. "We have used our democratic right to protest against those who are misusing the freedom of expression to insult and hurt Muslim sentiments," he said. Majlis Bachao Tehreek (MB

INDIA : Radical Mindset: Lawmakers, Fatwa and Jihad By Animesh Roul Two events that would shed some light on how far elected political leaders are influenced by the tenets of radical Islam, more than outlawed terrorists, in the subcontinent and they act with such impunity only to get away with their antics later. In India’s Andhra Pradesh state, sitting members of a political party, Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) unleashed a murderous attack on the self-exiled Bangladeshi author Taslima Nasreen on August 09 during a book release ceremony at the Press Club in Hyderabad city. MIM’s legislators and activists spearheaded the attacks against Taslima for her alleged blasphemous writings. Even they threatened to behead her under a 1994 fatwa, if she ever comes to Hyderabad again. Three MIM legislators and others were arrested and released on bail on the same day. One of them told the media later that, "Muslims are proud of what our legislators and workers h

Between Fanatic Secularism and Religious Fanaticism-the case of Tasleema Nasreen

Source: SAAG.ORG Guest Column- By Swati Parashar The secular credentials of India were questioned yet again when Bangladeshi writer, Tasleema Nasreen was attacked in Hyderabad, by none other than those who are considered as the law makers of the country. In a deplorable act of vandalism, three MLAs of the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) hurled abuses at Tasleema and even threw pieces of furniture at her while she was attending the launch of the Telugu version of her new novel, Shodh, in Hyderabad on August 9, 2007. The three MLAs of MIM and four other party activists were arrested by the police but later released on bail. Far from any repentance, even more alarming are their proclamations that Tasleema got what she deserved and that it could be worse next time. In a television debate, the unrepentant MIM MLA, Akbaruddin Owaisi said that, “She has hurt the sentiments of 20 crore Muslims. We are bothered so much about one person who is not even an Indian but we don't seem

Asia's rich and poor

Asia's rich and poor For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more Aug 9th 2007 | HONG KONG From The Economist Income inequality in emerging Asia is heading towards Latin American levels “GROWTH with equity” was the mantra of the Asian tigers during the three decades to the 1990s. Unlike Latin America, most of them combined speedy economic growth with relatively low and sometimes even falling income inequality, thereby spreading the economic gains widely. More recently, Asian economies have continued to enjoy the world's fastest growth, but the rich are now growing richer much faster than the poor. According to a report by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), income inequality has increased over the past decade or so in 15 of the 21 countries it has studied. The three main exceptions are Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia, the countries worst hit by the 1997 financial crisis. The biggest increases in inequality were in China, Nepal and Cambodia (see cha