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Showing posts from October 12, 2014

Oil Prices Continue to Define Geopolitics

Geopolitical Diary TUESDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2014 - 19:04    STRATFOR   Editor's Note: Oil prices dropped steeply Oct. 14, with crude oil futures falling 4.6 percent to $81.84 per barrel -- the biggest decrease in more than two years. Brent crude dropped by more than $4 a barrel at one stage in the day, dipping below $85 for the first time since 2010. While these are relatively substantial drops, they are just one part of a continuing trend Stratfor has been tracking over the past few months. Factors behind the slump include weak demand, a surfeit of supply and the fact that many large Middle Eastern producers are reluctant to reduce their output. In light of today's developments, we are republishing the following diary from Oct. 2, which details the reasons behind the falling prices and how the drops could affect oil-dependent countries around the world. The global oil benchmark, Brent crude, fell Thursday to about $92 per barrel before rebounding to finish the day at around $94 pe

Adding up the nickels and dimes

Suhasini Haidar http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/adding-up-the-nickels-and-dimes/article6497578.ece?homepage=true     PTI IN STEP: "The expectations on the personal front between Mr. Modi and Mr. Obama were more than met given their interactions and the particularly poignant visit to Martin Luther King Jr's memorial." Picture shows them at the memorial in Washington.   None of the unfulfilled expectations of Narendra Modi's visit to the U.S. takes away from his substantial achievements in restarting relations that had been in cold storage for months "I do not think Prime Ministers visits actually produce nickel and dime outcomes," former National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon said at an event in Washington this week when faced with questions about specific outcomes of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the United States. "I do not think that's the purpose. The purpose is to push relationship as a whole forward, which was ach

Student Movements: A Subject of Human Geography

Geopolitical Weekly Tuesday, October 14, 2014 - 03:00  Stratfor  By Sim Tack As student protests in Hong Kong continue, memories of the 1989 Tiananmen Square demonstrations naturally spring to mind. Less iconic but no less notable were the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, which began as a student movement; the 2007 Venezuelan protests, which started with a group of students demanding constitutional reform; and the 1929 protests in Paris, which challenged the role of churches in education. Of course, each student movement is unique; the one underway in Hong Kong concerns Hong Kong affairs, not widespread democratic reform in China proper. And yet all such movements share characteristics that transcend borders, making them an ideal phenomenon through which to study geopolitics. Student protests lay bare the social and cultural layers that move beneath the surface of geopolitics, much like subsurface currents flow beneath the waves of the oceans. Human geography forms the foundation of

The significance of lobbying in Indo-US ties

The significance of lobbying in Indo-US ties By Guest Post Takshashila on October 7, 2014 in blog by Sanjhana Dore There are many factors that determine a country's foreign policy. To understand a country's foreign policy, like in the case of the USA, we have to first look local before global. That is, to understand American policy in this case towards India, or other countries, we first have to understand its domestic politics. We have to study their domestic push and pull factors. One of the most important and controversial domestic factors is lobbying.    by Sanjhana Dore There are many factors that determine a country's foreign policy. To understand a country's foreign policy, like in the case of the USA, we have to...    What is lobbying and what role does it play in Indo-Us ties? There still does not seem to be a single definition that really covers all its elements. Nevertheless, it can simply, be understood as the process through which groups, organization or pe

Modi Government's recent creditable decisions

Modi Government has taken some credible decisions in last 2 days. These steps are certainly a Game changer for India in coming years. 1. Defence Ministry approved fast-track road building along the disputed border with China. 2. New 50 posts will be established in strategic position of Indo-China Border. 3. $2 billion extension to the Karwar Naval base in the southern state of Karnataka.The base is intended to take the load off Mumbai port, used by the navy and civilian ships. 4. Approved a Radar station in the Andaman and Nicobar islands in the Bay of Bengal to keep an eye on China's evil designs. 5. Radars and telecommunications projects within 100 km (62 miles) of the 4,000-km (2,500-mile) border with China, large parts of which are disputed, will be put on an automatic approval list. 6. Govt. Approved a long-stalled proposal to raise the height of the Narmada dam to 138.73 metres (455 feet), from 121.92 metres (400 feet), so more water will be available for drinking, irrigation

Pakistan’s Dangerous Game of Brinkmanship

Arun Sahgal http://idsa.in/idsacomments/Pakistansdangerousgameofbrinkmanship_asahgal_101014.html   October 10, 2014 Insecure Pakistan in the backdrop of the US withdrawal from Afghanistan is faced with the twin dilemma of international marginalization as part of fast receding regional relevance and political and economic instability. These fears are heightened by India's rapidly developing economy, political stability and fast paced modernization of its armed forces. For Pakistani fed on the belief, as Christian Fair puts it 'accepting the status quo with India is a defeat', such a scenario is an anathema that it is loathe to accept. This ideological perspective remains the driver that is forcing the Pakistani army in taking calculated military risks as a manifestation of its continued struggle which it must continue and persevere. According to Fair this behaviour of Pakistan is a result of it being fundamentally a dissatisfied state which seeks to increase its prestige thr

Pakistan’s obsession with Kashmir continues

http://www.niticentral.com/2014/10/13/pakistans-obsession-kashmir-continues-240603.html   HARI OM | OCT 13, 2014 I'M IN   The approach of other religio-political formations in the fray, such as Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), Jamait Ulama-e-Islam (Fazal-ul-Rehman), Mutahida Quomi Movement (MQM) and similar outfits towards Jammu & Kashmir was no different. All these formations had held out a solemn commitment in their respective manifestos that they will work with single-minded devotion for the resolution of the Kashmir issue in accordance with the "aspirations of Kashmiris". The approach of other religio-political formations in the fray, such as Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), Jamait Ulama-e-Islam (Fazal-ul-Rehman), Mutahida Quomi Movement (MQM) and similar outfits towards Jammu & Kashmir was no different. All these formations had held out a solemn commitment in their respective manifestos that they will work with single-minded devotion for the resolution of the Kashmir issue in acco

Petition to Stop appointment of Preeta Bansal who denied visa to Narendra Modi as Federal Circuits Judge

SIGN Petition to Stop appointment of Preeta Bansal who denied visa to Narendra Modi as Federal Circuits Judge   October 10, 2014   From: Prakasarao V Velagapudi PhD USA Dear Friends:   Preeta Bansal was head of USCIRF when it shamelessly denied Visa for Narendra Modi which was not done to any leader of any nation.   Modi was elected by 50 million people several times, courts did not find fault with him, but joining hands with USCIRF racists, she conveniently assented to this ignominious action.  Musharaff, Iranian, Saudi Arabia, even Muslim Brotherhood leaders who practice intolerance and support terrorism could come into US without any issues, but Preeta, who was head of USCIRF could not argue against refusal of visa to Modi by USCIRF serving as its head!!!   http://www.petitions24.com/petition_to_deny_the_application_of_preeta_bansal#form   See the USCIRF report under Preeta Bansal denying visa to Modi below. As Rajeev Malhotra mentioned, Hindus like Preeta Bansal who come up in publ