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Showing posts from August 19, 2018

The Grand Strategy of Rain Man A unique individual in the Indian political circuit, this  Rain Man  is capable of making money rain by conjuring various schemes to loot public money and is on his latest caper By   Sree Iyer  - August 25, 2018 A unique individual in the Indian political circuit, this  Rain Man  is capable of making money rain by conjuring various schemes to loot public money and is on his latest caper A native of the  Land of Vedas (LOV) , this immaculately-clad-in-white politician with leftist leanings in his early years and then pivoting to greedy-as-heck-capitalism, is known to be one of the best fundraisers for the party he associates himself with. Now all the politicians from this land of Vedas, located where the three seas meet wear only white so we will be more specific – this politician has a suave exterior for the most part, uses this to charm many a lady journalist (who are perhaps turned off by the crude exertions of the Ganges belt politicians) into a web of intrigue fro

When Palestinian Blood Isn’t Equal

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Recently, the human rights organization AGPS published a report documenting 3,840 cases of Palestinians killed since the beginning of the Syrian war in 2011 – nearly four times the number of those killed during the six years of the first intifada (December 1987-September 1993). The circumstances of the deaths were shelling, shooting, or torture in the interrogation rooms of prisons throughout Syria. Mahmoud Abbas remained silent and did not condemn Bashar Assad or Iran. Palestinian blood in the West Bank and Gaza appears to be worth far more than the blood of Palestinians elsewhere in the world. This is because Palestinians who are killed by IDF fire serve as a bulwark against Israel, whether by the Arab states or by the Western world... Read more When Palestinian Blood Isn’t Equal By Dr. Edy Cohen, August 24, 2018

The social credit system: China’s tool for moral education 21/08/18 Interview with Rogier Creemers (via Young China Watchers) The aim of China's social credit system, as Rogier Creemer of Leiden University sees it, is "to ensure that people who behave in a sincere and trustworthy way in society are incentivized to do so." In this interview, the  postdoctoral scholar in the Law and Governance of China describes the current state of the social credit system and its intended uses for government oversight and moral education.    Young China Watchers (YCW): What are some common misnomers about how China’s social credit system works?      Rogier Creemers (RC):  There are several areas of sloppiness generally in reporting on the social credit system. Firstly, conflating Ant Financial’s Sesame Credit system with that of the government’s social credit system. The Sesame Credit system is a combination of a loyalty scheme and user-rating system on a private-trading platform. No one is mandated to have a Sesame Credit acco


Aug 14, 2018   Facebook has released  Digital Diplomacy on Facebook , a best-practices guide showcasing the social platform as an ideal place for countries to leverage their soft power assets.  As Facebook already serves as a connector for many state and non-state actors across the world, the guide features tools for engagement, tips for creating authentic audiovisual content and ideas to facilitate the public's access to content. "Facebook provides a window into Foreign Ministries, Embassies, and the diplomatic world that did not previously exist," explains the guide. "We give diplomats an opportunity to showcase their work and their countries—from its economic strengths to its natural beauty—and speak directly with people of different backgrounds." You can find the guide in its entirety  here .

IS THE US - CHINA MILITARY GAP CLOSING? CHINESE VS US MILITARY POSTURING IS NOTHING NEW, BUT AS INCREASED SPENDING IN CHINA BOOSTS TECHNOLOGY INNOVATION, SHOULD THE US BE CONCERNED? WE CHECK IN ON THE LATEST DEVELOPMENTS IN AN EMERGING ARMS RACE. US DEFENCE OFFICIALS EXPRESS CONCERNS… On 21 June officials from across the US Department of Defense appeared before the House Armed Services Committee's military personnel subcommittee to warn of the Chinese threat to the US’ technological and industrial base.  "We must get within the decision loops of our adversaries," the group said. "We must increase the speed and efficiency at which we educate, invent, adapt, prototype and demonstrate to respond to current and future threats to ensure and preserve our dominance in the field."  "They want to develop weapons systems that strike farther, faster, harder and more precisely as a means to erode the tr

AMERICA’S TRITON DRONES AND THE RACE TO GET A HANDLE ON THE SOUTH CHINA SEA THE US IS DEPLOYING MQ-4C TRITON DRONES TO GUAM TO ASSIST WITH SURVEILLANCE IN THE SOUTH CHINA SEA, WHERE THE BATTLE FOR STRATEGIC SUPREMACY WITH CHINA THREATENS TO ESCALATE INTO DIRECT CONFRONTATION. JULIAN TURNER ASSESSES THE SITUATION AND ASKS WHAT THE DRONES WILL ADD TO THE US MILITARY’S ARSENAL IN THE PACIFIC.  /  IMAGE: US NAVY Prior to taking over the US Indo-Pacific Command on 30 May, four-star Admiral Philip Davidson appeared before a Senate committee. Referring to China’s ongoing development of forward operating bases on manmade islands in the South China Sea, he made the following statement. “China is now capable of controlling the South China Sea in all scenarios short of war with the US.” The military is not adverse to using hyperbole and scare tactics to squeeze a few extra dollars out of Congress, of course, but in this case the

Beijing’s Grand Plan to Rejuvenate Gwadar   17 Aug 2018 04.04pm Chinese President Xi Jinping’s key to unlocking the great potential the $900 billion Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) fell into his hands after the country secured the $54 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) agreement. Plans for turning the Pakistani port of Gwadar into one of the world’s largest transit and transhipment cargo facilities include building  nine, multipurpose berths along 3.2 kilometre  of seafront to the east of its existing ones. The infrastructure project, the largest unilateral direct investment into another country, connects Kashgar in China’s Xinjiang region by land and ocean routes to the Arabian Sea. In September 2017 private investment house  China Pak Investment Corporation  bought the 3.6 million square foot International Port City and will build a $150 million gated community for the anticipated influx of 500,000 Chinese professionals that will live in Gwadar by 2022 and work in its proposed new financi