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Showing posts from March 6, 2011

LIBYA: The pen versus the sword

http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/03/20113711235230215.html The Gaddafi's enjoyed a political facelift from the West whilst carefully avoiding blowback - until now. Larbi Sadiki Last Modified: 08 Mar 2011 15:32 GMT The quill may be mightier than the sword. But this is a story of how some Western academics have succumbed to the power of the cheque book. Which leads me to ask the question: is it money that makes the world go round? Whatever happened to the strength of liberal ideals, humanism, democracy and all that spiel? There is a Libyan connection, which is the context of this story. Maybe Gaddafi, sons and henchmen have survived till now and may kill more Libyans due to the fact that many experts and academics, some brilliant voices of the global democratic agenda, have chosen to accept the Libyan regime's illicit funding over the ethics they preach to their own students. Knowledge is power It may be so that knowledge is power, but surely not when knowledg

TIBETAN CAUSE AFTER THE DALAI LAMA

B.RAMAN While wishing and hoping for a long life for His Holiness the Dalai Lama, one has to mentally prepare onself to the eventuality of his being no more with us one day and think of how to keep the Tibetan cause alive after him. To talk of likely scenarios after he leaves this world should not be misinterpreted as disrespect to him. 2. One thing is certain. After the death of His Holiness, he legitimacy of his spiritual successor is going to be questioned----whether who is his re-incarnation is decided by Tibetan elders respected by their community or by surrogates of the Communist Party of China (CPC). As has happened in the case of the institution of the Panchen Lama---one has to expect a long period of contention between two Dalai Lamas, one chosen by Tibetan elders in accordance with Tibetan traditions and the selection of the other manipulated by the CPC. 3. There is bound to be a long period of vacuum in the exercise of the spiritual authority of His Holiness till th

Major Tsunami Strikes Japan After 8.9-Magnitude Earthquake

11 Mar 11 http://www.ihsglobalinsight.com/SDA/SDADetail19990.htm A major earthquake struck Japan today, triggering a ten-metre tsunami that has caused extensive damage across north-eastern Japan, and setting off tsunami alerts across the Pacific region Significance A major earthquake measuring 8.9 on the Richter scale struck Japan today, triggering a tsunami. Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in Japan's north-east have been worst affected, with Tokyo also reporting some earthquake-related damage. Implications Coastal regions across Asia are now braced for possible tsunamis caused by the tremors over the coming hours. Outlook It is too early to assess the extent of the damage caused by the powerful earthquake and tsunami as aftershocks and possible tsunamis remain ongoing risks. Risk Ratings Owing to the extensive damage caused to infrastructural networks in Japan, particularly in the north-west, IHS Global Insight has downgraded the Operational Risk Rating by 0.5, from 1.75 to 2

Massive Quake, Tsunami Hit Japan

The fifth-largest earthquake on record struck near Japan, doing direct damage to homes and businesses, and generating a tsunami that devastated at least a few coastal communities. IHS Global Insight Perspective http://www.ihsglobalinsight.com/SDA/SDADetail19993.htm Significance Early reports are sketchy, but it appears Japan has suffered significant damage from the quake and tsunami. Implications As the world's third-largest economy, any negative impact on Japan could have repercussions for the rest of the world. Outlook Damage done by the disaster will hurt consumption and output in the near term, but should be offset by reconstruction spending later this year. A large earthquake, 8.9 on the Richter scale, occurred just offshore of northern Japan, causing both quake damage and sending a tsunami into low-lying, unprotected areas. The extent of damage is unclear at this point. Prime Minister Naoto Kan said the quake caused serious damage, and striking video footage has shown the

Arab world witnesses more protests

http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2011/03/2011311141047609595.html Several countries across the Arab world have witnessed fresh anti-government protests, although "Day of Rage" demonstrations planned in Saudi Arabia failed to materialise in the wake of a security clampdown. Demonstrations in Saudi Arabia were supposed to start in after Friday prayers at noon but as the mosques emptied there were no signs of rallies, with security forces manning checkpoints in key locations across several cities. Online activists using Facebook and Twitter had called for the "Day of Rage" and a "Saudi March 11 revolution" demanding a fully elected parliament and ruler. In the strategic Olaya commercial centre of the capital Riyadh, where protesters were urged to congregate, hundreds of security personnel surrounded the mosque and inspected motorists' identification documents. Clerics sermonised against demonstrations, saying public agitation was unjustified u

Unstringing China's strategic pearls

By Billy Tea http://atimes.com/atimes/ China/MC11Ad02.html Ever since the term "String of Pearls" was coined by a team of experts at United States-based consultancy Booz Allen in 2004, journalists and academics have overplayed China's supposedly malevolent involvement with countries along its Sea Lines of Communication (SLOC), which stretch from the South China Sea to the Indian Ocean. For them it was easy to believe that China, a country once known more for its bloody Tiananmen Square crackdown in 1989 and one-child population control policy than its strategic might, had a hidden strategy to build military bases along its SLOC. Now, with the recent announcement that China plans to increase its military budget by 12.7% year-on-year, the "String of Pearls" strategy is expected to receive new critical attention and commentary. There is still scant concrete evidence that China is currently or in the near future planning to build and maintain military bases

US talks put off for poll

OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT http://www.telegraphindia.com/1110312/jsp/nation/story_13703777.jsp New Delhi, March 11: India and the US have postponed a second round of their strategic dialogue that was scheduled to be held in early April during a visit by US secretary of state Hillary Clinton. An official statement from the government said the dialogue was being re-scheduled because of Assembly elections in India and the upheavals in West Asia and North Africa. The dialogue will be held “at the earliest available opportunity…through mutual consultation”. The announcement of the postponement of the dialogue comes even as the members of the UN Security Council debate options for intervention in Libya, especially after the UK and France have said that they will move a resolution seeking the enforcement of a no-fly zone on the North African country. India is still debating what stand it should take. Earlier this week, US ambassador to India, Timothy Roemer, also made a strong push to se

US, India draw closer as defense planners, army chiefs meet

Chidanand Rajghatta, TNN | Mar 11, 2011, 07.20pm IST http://timesofindia. indiatimes.com/world/us/US- India-draw-closer-as-defense- planners-army-chiefs-meet/ articleshow/7680812.cms WASHINGTON: Top men leading India's fighting arm and its defense policy engaged with their American counterparts here this week as New Delhi and Washington drew closer in a strategic clinch while trying not to alarm China and Pakistan , which are seen by the democratic duo as posing complex challenges in the neighborhood and beyond. U.S and Indian officials were circumspect in describing low-key Defense Policy Group (DPG) meetings early in the week, an engagement that was closely followed by talks between the Indian Army Chief V K Singh and his U.S counterpart Gen. George Casey . In a statement that was largely anodyne but contained much between the lines, they spoke of an "extensive discussion on further strengthening bilateral defense ties, under the auspices of the Defence Framework A

India to make determined bid for NSG membership

Sandeep Dikshit http://www.hindu.com/2011/03/12/stories/2011031265541000.htm India's association with non-proliferation treaty may hamper membership bid India, not being a member, does not have a say in deciding changes in norms NEW DELHI: Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao will lead India's bid for full membership in the four international export control regimes — the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Missile Technology Control Regime, the Australia Group and the Wassenaar Group. The Foreign Secretary was to address representatives of the 45-member NSG on March 28 in Vienna, but the interaction was pushed back to a date mismatch. “The fact that the Foreign Secretary will be leading India's bid is indicative of the importance that India attaches to the process of gaining full membership of the NSG,” said government sources. Observers, however, felt that obtaining NSG membership may be the most difficult for India given its close association with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation

Indian Ocean Community: a socio-economic powerhouse

Celebrate the largest vishnu mandiram of the world which is NOT in India. It is in cambodia. The concept paper is on page 1 of IOC website. Indian ocean rim countries will become a powerful 6 trillion dollar gdp nation. READ & LEARN

MY TANJORE DIARY

B.RAMAN March 11,2011 8-45 AM: Leave for Tanjore (53 KM) from Trichy in a taxi driven by a young commerce graduate from Mailaduthurai. He has not been able to get a job since graduating some years ago. Earning his livelihood as a taxi driver. Drive uninteresting despite excellent four-lane road. Hardly any greenery on both sides. 9-45 AM: Arrive in Brahadeeswarar temple in Tanjore built 1000 years ago. Unimpressive from outside, but fabulous once inside. Overwhelmed by the sheer brilliance of its conception and execution. Just as I was overwhelmed when I first visited the Angkor Vat temple in Cambodia in November 2001. Unless you stand before it and see it for yourself, you can't imagine how huge it is ---its central gopuram over the sanctum sanctorum and the court-yard where 1000 Bharata Natyam dancers of India danced last year in celebration of its 1000th anniversary. 10 AM: As I stood before it and admiring it, a friendly looking man, who appeared to be in his 40s, approac

Tsunami in Japan and India's Response

By Dr. Adityanjee Source: http://councilforstrategicaffairs.blogspot.com/ Japan has faced the worst earthquake measuring 8.9 on the Richter scale. Even the after-shocks are of very high magnitude in the range of 5 to 6 on the Richter scale. This massive earthquake has brought a massive Tsunami in northeast Japan with more than one thousand people already dead. Five of Japan's nuclear reactors have been affected and two of them are already on fire. The final death toll is likely to run into thousands. The people of Japan need immediate help from the international community. India has had friendly relations with Japan. Japan has been one of the investors in India's infrastructure growth and development. India and Japan are coordinating their efforts as part of the G4 nations to reform the UN Security Council. Both nations share historical, cultural and civlizational links. True, that Japan has been dragging its feet in signing a civil nuclear energy agreement with India on id

Libya's Great Man-Made River Projec

virtually unknown in the West: Libya's water resources We still wonder how on earth did Gaddafi manage to stay in power for forty years? Did no one notice his madness until now? Did no one notice that he built a HUGE FRESH WATER PIPELINE to the Benghazi region, that lunatic? Were they waiting for him to finish? Libya - click to enlarge Libya's Great Man-Made River Project, September 1, 2010 http://twelfthbough.blogspot.com/2011/03/virtually- unknown-in-west-libyas-water.html The 1st of September marks the anniversary of the opening of the major stage of Libya's Great Man-Made River Project. This incredibly huge and successful water scheme is virtually unknown in the West, yet it rivals and even surpasses all our greatest development projects. The leader of the so-called advanced countries, the United States of America cannot bring itself to acknowledge Libya's Great Man-Made River. The West refuses to recognize that a small country, with a