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Showing posts from December 10, 2017

David Cameron to set up £750m UK-China investment fund

The Telegraph, UK China's President Xi Jinping drinks a pint of beer with David Cameron during his visit to Britain in 2015 CREDIT: GETTY   Edward Malnick   16 DECEMBER 2017 • 10:53AM David Cameron is helping to set up up a new £750m UK-China investment fund aimed at forging closer ties between the two countries, it has been confirmed. The former Prime Minister will become vice chairman of the new private equity fund after being approached for the role by Lord Chadlington, a friend and former Tory donor. The announcement, which confirmed reports published last month, came as the Government prepared to set out details of an agreement between British and Chinese ministers on forging closer economic ties, following a trip to the country by Philip Hammond, the Chancellor. It is understood that the new investment fund, called the UK-China Fund is a private sector initiative that does not involve any taxpayer money - but it has been welcomed by the Government as providing support

Russia, China Grow Closer As The New Silk Road Unfolds

By  ZeroHedge  - Dec 15, 2017, 11:00 AM CST China's Belt and Road Initiative heralds a new era with mega infrastructure projects dotting the landscape... If you are looking for the latest breakthroughs in trans-Eurasian geo-economics, you should keep an eye on the East – the Russian Far East. One interesting project is the new state-of-the-art  $1.5 billion Bystrinsky plant . Located about 400 kilometers from the Chinese border by rail and tucked inside the Trans-Baikal region of Siberian, it is now finally open for business. This mining and processing complex, which contains up to 343 million tonnes of ore reserves, is a joint venture between Russian and Chinese companies. Norilsk Nickel, Russia’s leading mining group and one of the world’s largest producers of nickel and palladium, has teamed up with CIS Natural Resources Fund, established by President Vladimir Putin, and China’s Highland Fund. But then, this is just the latest example of Russian and Chinese cooperation gear

Concern Grows In Pakistan Over Cases Of Disappearance 05:35 Play December 14, 2017 Diaa Hadid closemore For one Pakistani mother, sunburn signals her desperation to find her son. Zarjan Atta rode rickshaws and buses for four days on desert roads, deepening and reddening her brown skin, as she traveled from her village to Karachi, Pakistan's southern port mega-city. That's where her son Nawaz, 23, was living with relatives and studying at Karachi University. Her relatives say armed men dragged him from their flat on Oct. 28. They were in civilian clothes. They pushed the women and children into a room. They warned: If you speak, you'll be next. The  Human Rights Commission of Pakistan  counted 728 alleged disappearances last year. Since 2001, the group estimates that up to 10,000 people have gone missing, with nearly 3,000 still unaccounted for. And this, says Zohra Yusuf, a commission board member, is a conservative estimate. Oth

Is Chinese Militarization Of Pakistan Beginning?

Is Chinese Militarization Of Pakistan Beginning? LAWRENCE SELLIN Retired Colonel, U.S. Army Reserve 9:56 PM 12/15/2017 According to a December 12, 2017 Urdu-language news site  report , during a high-level meeting presumably between Chinese and Pakistani officials held on the last day of the November Chinese Economic Summit in Hong Kong, China offered to train Pakistani security forces to protect both the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects in Pakistan and the Chinese nationals working on them. That follows a September 17, 2017 official CPEC  announcement , whereby China would “assist” Pakistan in “capacity building” of “civil armed forces.” At face value, the Chinese offer appears to be a predictable response to the proliferation of Islamic extremist groups, the permanent Taliban support and recruiting network, and the festering independence insurgency, all in Pakistan’s southwestern

Diplomacy in the Age of Trump – Part 1

 Laurence Pope  08 Dec, 2017        When the conference organizers asked for a quick title for this talk, I came up with “Diplomacy in the Age of Trump”. But no matter how you measure it, an age is longer than this administration is likely to last, and a thorough discussion of the follies of the current chief magistrate of our venerable Republic would take up all the time we have tonight and more. In the end we might be angrier, but little the wiser. Criticism of Trump’s foreign policy isn’t a matter of party politics. Republican leaders from John McCain to George W. Bush have spoken about his betrayal of American ideals and values — former President Bush’s October 19 speech was particularly eloquent. His bombastic “America First” policies have succeeded in doing something I never thought possible, uniting the normally fractious foreign policy commentariat in opposition across the political spectrum, from David Brooks to Rosa Brooks, Eliot Cohen to Richard Cohen. Fortunately for

Diplomacy in the Age of Trump

Diplomacy in the Age of Trump – Part 2  Laurence Pope  08 Dec, 2017        Continued from  Diplomacy in the Age of Trump – Part 1 Today, the neglect of the Foreign Service which has characterized our national security bureaucracy since the end of the Cold War has been replaced by an active attempt to destroy it. Other institutions of the deep state like the FBI, the CIA, and especially the military, have powerful defenders; the State Department and the Foreign Service make easier targets. How else to account for the draconian cuts which have been proposed for the State Department budget, for the hiring freeze managed from the White House designed to shrink it in size, and especially for the failure to make any appointments at all to key positions at our foreign ministry? Almost a year into the Administration there is still no assistant secretary for the Near East at all. Of six undersecretary positions at the State Department, five are vacant. Of the six regional bureaus which c


CONSTRUCTING REVOLUTION: SOVIET PROPAGANDA POSTERS FROM BETWEEN THE WORLD WARS Constructing Revolution  explores the remarkable and wide-ranging body of propaganda posters as an artistic consequence of the 1917 Russian Revolution. Marking its centennial, this exhibition delves into a relatively short-lived era of unprecedented experimentation and utopian idealism, which produced some of the most iconic images in the history of graphic design. The eruption of the First World War, the Russian revolutions of 1905 and 1917, and the subsequent civil war broke down established political and social structures and brought an end to the Tsarist Empire. Russia was split into antagonistic worlds: the Bolsheviks and the enemy, the proletariat and the exploiters, the collective and the private, the future and the past. The deft manipulation of public opinion was integral to the violent class struggle. Having seized power in 1917, the Bolsheviks immediately recognized posters as a critical means

Remember Subramanian Swamy with Reverence for Saving the Ram Setu By   Apurv Agrawal  -  December 15, 2017 jāko rākhe sāiyām̐ māra sake na koya bāla nā bāṃkā kara sake jo jāga bairī hoya  One protected by Ram can’t be destroyed by anyone, even someone one opposed to entire world like Ravan will fail to affect even a hair strand of such a surrendered soul. Majority of the people are still unaware in our country about the unprecedented contribution of  Dr. Subramanian Swamy  in protecting Shri Ram Setu which the then UPA government was hell bent on demolishing. The VHP President Shri Ashok Singhal had requested Dr. Subramanian Swamy to continue the fight for Ram Setu when the latter was heading the Janta Party. History of Setu Samudram Canal Project: The Setu Samudram Canal Project (SSCP) recommends cutting a shipping channel across the narrow strip of land to connect the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Bay with the object of providing a short-cut for ocean-going ships plying

U.S. Military Capabilities and Forces for a Dangerous World Rethinking the U.S. Approach to Force Planning by  David Ochmanek ,  Peter A. Wilson ,  Brenna Allen ,  John Speed Meyers ,  Carter C. Price Download DOWNLOAD EBOOK FOR FREE FormatFile SizeNotes PDF file 3.5 MB Technical Details » Research Questions What capability areas merit highest priority for modernizing U.S. forces to meet emerging challenges?How much would it cost to develop and deploy capabilities and posture enhancements called for by the emerging security environment? This report evaluates the capabilities of current and programmed U.S. forces to meet the demands of conflicts that could arise involving any of five potential adversaries: China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, and Salafist - jihadi groups worldwide . The report finds that U.S. forces today are larger than necessary to fight a single major war , are failing to keep pace with the modernizing forces of great power adversaries, are poorly postured to mee

Indian Ocean politics of the 21st Century – A view from Sri Lanka December 14, 2017, 9:47 pm  (This is an edited version of a presentation made by Tissa Jayatilaka on Tuesday, 31 October, 2017 at the ‘Roundtable Discussion’ jointly organised by the Mario Einaudi Centre for International Studies and the South Asia Programme of Cornell University, Ithaca, New York) Continued from yesterday The creation of wealth and enhanced economic activity in the IOR will not only bring benefits but also pose enormous security challenges to us all. Most of the world’s armed conflicts are presently located in the IOR. Besides the waters of the Indian Ocean are also home to continually evolving strategic developments, including the rise of regional powers with nuclear capacities. Conflicts in the Gulf, unrest in Afghanistan, rise of violent extremism, growing incidents of piracy in and around the Horn of Africa loom over the region. All

A ‘Neighbourhood First’ foreign policy has little value for India All big countries have problems with their smaller neighbours because the disparity in size and power creates insecurities in them, not to mention loss of identity as in the case of India’s neighbours who share with us ethnic, linguistic, cultural, civilisational ... Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Sri Lnakan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe (left) and his wife Maithree Wickremesinghe, Hyderabad House, New Delhi, India, November 23, 2017 (Representative Photo) (Sushil Kumar/HT) Updated: Dec 15, 2017 12:28 IST By Kanwal Sibal We often hold ourselves responsible for mismanaging relations with our neighbours, believing that either we are insensitive or overbearing in dealing with them, or that, as the bigger country, we have been ungenerous. We are faulted for not tying them to our economy. However, we oversimplify the dynamics at play between bi

Modi and corrupt business lobby

The experienced and seasoned leader Narendra Modi is, it would be foolish on anyone's part to think that he was not well aware of the outlash he will face from the business community for a disruptive step such as GST which will force the trading community to pay taxes on goods, something they have been evading since forever. GST and taking disruptive steps have been the need of the hour to increase the transparency and bring more indirect taxes into the net. . Last year, he took on a community which no one in the history of India had ever dared to ruffle - the Jewellers. He imposed a cess on jewellery traders bringing their sales in the tax net. Didn't Modi know that it will lead to outlash from the jewellers ? . Wasn't Modi aware of the implicit but strong outlash he will face from Central government employees for introducing Biometric attendance ?? Those who were used to come at 11 am, play Golf in the lunch hours and leave by 3 pm have to stay for the entire duratio

A tale of Congress betrayal: Bizenjo speech for freedom of Balochistan — December 12, 1947   mustikhan    Uncategorized  December 11, 2017 4 Minutes Not many Indians know but it was the Congress party that led to the bloody enslavement of Balochistan. On this date December 12, 1947 a chapter in what later became the blood-checkered history of Balochistan’s struggle was written in the town of Dhadhar in France-sized Balochistan. It was a Friday. Here Mir Ghous Bakhsh Bizenjo, leader of the Kalat State National Party, who later became governor of Balochistan, made a case for the independence of Balochistan in the lower house of Balochistan parliament, called Darul Awam. After his speech, the Darul Awam unanimously rejected the idea of any merger with what what was then less than four-month-old Pakistan. Here is Bizenjo’s speech: We have a distinct civilization, we have a separate culture like that of Iran and Afghanistan. We are Muslims but