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Showing posts from August 23, 2009

Swiss bank accounts : India Need to do more to get the money back

by Arun Kumar Switzerland has reportedly told the Indian authorities that it would not give them names of the Indians holding secret bank accounts in its banks while its largest bank, UBS, has agreed to give the US government names of about 4,500 US citizens who have accounts there. This is in addition to the 250 names it agreed to give in February 2009. Switzerland is one of the possibly 77 tax havens in the world where rich individuals (from all over the world) keep their money from the prying eyes of their governments. The money kept can be from illegal activities (like drug trafficking and corruption) or from legal activities to evade taxes. Though tax evasion itself is an illegality but this is not considered a criminality. Switzerland considers tax evasion to be a minor matter and can prosecute employees of any bank giving information about individuals indulging in tax evasion. Money from criminal activities may be routed t
Indian interests in regional security M.K. Bhadrakumar In the coming months, as the U.S.´ political engagement of the Taliban gains traction, Washington will surely expect New Delhi to keep the Indian profile in Kabul below the parapet. All the above confronts India with a regional security paradigm with contradictory tendencies. Clearly, there is need to keep the lines of communication open with Pakistan - call it `dialogue´ or `exchanges´ or `consultations´ - no matter what our machos noisily demand. A saving grace is that, in retrospect, New Delhi rejected any Indian military deployment in Afghanistan, though sections of our strategic community rooted for some adventure in the Hindu Kush. India cannot remain impervious to the threat of spread of challenges from Afghanistan to neighbouring countries. President Pratibha Patil´s visit to Tajikistan on September 2 provides a rare backdrop to pin our thoughts on India´s

China's tale of two restive regions

By Kent Ewing HONG KONG - Why is it that, as cocktail glasses clink and urbane voices clatter across the Western world, China's repressive policies in Tibet are generally regarded with outrage while the plight of Muslim Uyghurs in the restive Xinjiang region rarely rates a mention? No one hung a "Free Xinjiang" banner from San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge ahead of last year's Summer Olympic Games, hosted by Beijing, while "Free Tibet" protesters turned the iconic landmark into a billboard for their cause. And now that the central government of China has put Xinjiang under lockdown in the wake of last month's riots in its capital, Urumqi, Western protests have been virtually all but non-existent. The only Western country to raise a real fuss about Xinjiang - Australia - isn't even located in the West. But Canberra's row with Beijing, now subsiding as both sides realize how much they need ea


B.RAMAN Among the major development projects in Pakistan in which the Chinese have been involved till now are the construction of an international commercial port cum naval base in Gwadar on the Makran coast in Balochistan, the development of the Saindak copper-cum-gold mines in Balochistan, the upgradation of the Karakoram Highway connecting the Xinjiang province of China with Pakistan via the Northern Areas (Gilgit and Baltistan), the construction of a small-scale hydel project in the Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and the development of a mobile telephone network in the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP). 2. The commercial port in Gwadar has already been completed and commissioned, but it has not been attracting many foreign sea-going vessels due to the poor security situation in Balochistan because of the increasing activities of Baloch nationalists demanding an independent Balochistan. The construction of a naval base in Gwadar, which could also be used by Chines

'India only gives moral support to Balochistan'

Source: REDIFF.COM August 24, 2009 17:08 IST Dr Jumma Khan Marri is a Baloch political leader and son of the legendary Baloch leader Mir Hazar Khan Marri who led the Baloch freedom struggle in the 1970s and 1980s. Dr Marri did his schooling in hiding in Sindh, Hyderabad and Karachi at the height of the military operation in Balochistan. His family was on top of the list of most wanted people by the Pakistani military and the Directorate of Inter Services Intelligence. During this time many Balochs were forced to migrate to Afghanistan. Dr Marri also migrated and completed his schooling at the K V K Indian central school in Kabul. He went to Moscow [ Images ] in the then Soviet Union in 1986 along with many other Baloch students for his higher education; he acquired his MD in 1994 at the Russian State Medical University, and subsequently got his Ph D in immunology and allergies at the same university in 1998. He returned from Russia [ Images ] in 1999 with the aim to help his div

Stop This Menonhunt :The tirade against the ex-foreign secretary is uncalled for

Arundhati Ghose One of the fashionable phrases currently in use to address the complexities of international relations is `thinking out of the box' ; few, though, appear to be ready to accept `acting out of the box'. Reactions to change tend to be sharp; even for this commentator, the joint statement issued at Sharm el-Sheikh initially came as a jolt. However, a closer perusal of the document, its careful drafting, and later, the statement by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Parliament, clarified much of the text and the context. It was clear that much was left unsaid, as is normal in sensitive international negotiations, leaving it to critics and analysts to speculate on the basis of their particular political bent. The `controversy', unfortunately, degenerated into personal attacks, on occasion amounting to charges of treasonous or extraordinarily stupid behaviour, simplemindedness or sheer incompetence on the part of th

Fighting the Taliban: Odds stacked against the Pakistan Army

by Gurmeet Kanwal Baitullah Mehsud, leader of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan of South Waziristan, has been killed by a US missile launched from an unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) and a bitter succession war has broken out in the TTP. Pakistan's north-west is now so deeply embroiled in insurgency that, for a change, no one has made even a token statement of disapproval against yet another violation of Pakistan's sovereignty by US forces deployed in Afghanistan. Perhaps the government and the Pakistan army are grateful to the US for helping them to get rid of an iconic symbol of defiance. After the partially successful Operation Rah-e-Rast (the Right Path) in Buner-Swat Valley and the long-drawn Operation Mizan in South Waziristan, which has failed to meet its objectives so far, it has clearly emerged that the Pakistan army is finding it difficult to effectively subdue the Taliban, leave aside rooting them out. Also, som

Home and the World~Does India's Foreign Policy Serve The National Interest?

MG Devasahayam During the heated parliamentary debate on the Prime Minister's foreign policy sellout to Pakistan at Sharm el-Sheikh, allegedly under US influence, two questions were flying ~ does India have a foreign policy and if so, is it in the national interest? As the Treasury benches and the greenhorn external affairs minister, SM Krishna, ran for cover, the Congress veteran and former foreign minister, Pranab Mukherjee, gave a resounding response: "Yes. India has a foreign policy and we have never deviated from its fundamentals". The second question was side-stepped, obviously because the answer is ~ `It is not'. Let us first look at India's self-sacrificing relationship with the United States of America, the world's only superpower. It is genuflection, prostration and crawling all the way. It all started with the LPG ~ Liberalisation, Privatisation, Globalisati

India conscious of Chinese presence in Indian Ocean region

PTI | New Delhi India is conscious of the Chinese presence in the Indian Ocean region and is taking "adequate measures" to make sure that its neighbourhood is not threatened, Minister of State for Defence MM Pallam Raju on Thursday said. "China being a regional power will make its moves and if we sense a threat to our internal security we will do some counter measures," he told reporters here on the sidelines of homeland security seminar. However, "we need to give China the benefit of doubt that they are also in their quest to safeguard their sea lanes of communication because they have their energy resources passing through this (Indian Ocean). "They are taking some steps. We have to make sure that that it is not intrusive and they will not come into our space. Towards that end we are conscious of what China is doing and we are making adequate measures

China's secretive military launches Web site

2009-08-20 19:30:00 China's Defense Ministry launched its first official Web site Thursday, part of an effort by the normally secretive military to be more transparent. The launch of the site — including an English version — comes as the U.S. Army's top general visits Beijing for talks with his Chinese counterparts. Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey was to visit the headquarters of the People's Liberation Army on Thursday and meet PLA Chief of the General Staff Chen Bingde. A notice on the Web site said it is "designed to let the outside world have a better perception of China's national defense policy." "Help enhance foreign exchanges and cooperation, (and) display before the world the fine image of the PLA as a mighty, civilized and peaceful force," it said. The site will also help China's drive to modernize its military, it said. China has long been tightlipped about its military str

Kargil exposed Pak untrustworthiness

By M.V. Kamath It is just over ten years since India won the Kargil War and threw out the last of the Pakistani intruders from the mountain tops, causing severe losses to the degenerate Pakistani forces. To the last, Pakistan refused to acknowledge its blatant guilt. Those Pakistani intruders who were a mix of soldiers from III, IV, V, VI and XII battalions of Pakistan's Northern Light Infantry (NLI), members of Pakistan's Special Service Group and several jihadi militants had sneaked into the posts temporarily vacated by Indian soldiers because of weather conditions. That dastardly and mean act was an open violation of an Indo-Pak understanding. Pakistan's strategy was to occupy dominating positions at heights between the Line of Control and the Srinagar-Kargil-Leh National Highway, 1-A. The broader aim was to isolate the Ladakh region from the rest of India and alter the

Balochistan: Iran fired over 50 rockets into Mashkail town, three women killed

2009/8/22 Kharan: Iranian forces have fired over 50 rockets into the bordering town of Mashkail which killed three women and injured two other innocent civilians. District Nazim Mashkail Hajji Agha Khan said that five feet long rockets shells have “IRAN” written on them and these rockets have been fired between 2 am and 3:30 yesterday [22-08-2009]. He further said that 30 rockets shells have been recovered so far. District officer Mashkail Mr Naseer Baloch said that a hospital and several houses have been hit by the Iranian fired rockets. Eyes witnesses said that rockets have been fired by the Iranian security forces as they have seen a convoy of 14 security vehicle going back toward Iran after the attack which killed innocent civilians and destroyed their houses. Thousands of people took to streets after the vicious attack by the Iranian security forces on unarmed civilians in Mashkail. They demand an immediate inquiry to this inhuman attack and gross human rights violation. On


A JIHADI QUIZ INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM MONITOR By B.Raman 1. Of all the jihadi terrorist organisations of Pakistan , there is one which has never been banned either by the Government of Pakistan or designated by the US State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation (FTO) or banned by the Governments of the European Union Countries or by the anti-terrorism sanctions committee of the UN Security Council. 2.Of all the jihadi terrorist organisations of Pakistan , there is one whose assets and bank accounts have never been sought to be frozen either by Pakistan or by the US or by the EU or by the UNSC Committee. 3.Of all the jihadi terrorist leaders of Pakistan , there is one who has not been sought to be declared as a terrorist by the anti-terrorism sanctions committee of the UNSC because this subject was not taken up by the US. 4. Which is that terrorist organisation and who is that terrorist leader? You find the answers to those questions and you will be able to make a fair