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Showing posts from November 3, 2019

Managed chaos: Russia’s deal with Turkey on northern Syria

Commentary Gustav Gressel   3rd November, 2019 Kremlin  - © Source:    ecfr.eu Russia is now in charge of a multi-front war. It will need to manage relations between multiple local actors very carefully. Following their meeting in Sochi on 23 October 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, announced a ceasefire  deal for northern Syria . The agreement laid the foundation for extending Bashar al-Assad’s rule over north-eastern Syria, secured the Russian military presence across the whole country, and formalised the Turkish military deployment in the region close to its northern border. For the Kremlin, the agreement signals that the Russian-backed regime has conclusively won the war in Syria. Few in the West expected this victory when Russia intervened in the Syrian war in September 2015. Moscow’s goals were to ensure the survival of the Assad regime and reduce US influence in Syria – but the extent to which this would be possibl

Jallianwala Bagh - Why did Indians fire on Indians?

I lived in Hong Kong for some years. One of the facts I observed was that Hong Kongers by and large do not like Indians and many of them even hate us. Whether an Indian goes on to look for a home or on the streets to buy groceries, the feeling is palpable. Many Indians I talked to said that they felt it rather strongly. I had asked several people but got no satisfactory answer. Finally, I asked a local friend about the reason. He was a historian at one of Hong Kong’s University. At first he tried to deny that this existed but then later said the roots of it were historical. *“Do you know,”* he said, *“the British came to Hong Kong in 1841 and when they tried to build the first police force with the help of locals, they realized that the loyalty of the locals could not be trusted to follow their orders or shoot and kill if their fellow brethren revolted or were a rebellion. But they realized that they didn’t have the same experience in India. So they brought the Indians.* *The first

Jallianwala Bagh - Why did Indians fire on Indians?

I lived in Hong Kong for some years. One of the facts I observed was that Hong Kongers by and large do not like Indians and many of them even hate us. Whether an Indian goes on to look for a home or on the streets to buy groceries, the feeling is palpable. Many Indians I talked to said that they felt it rather strongly. I had asked several people but got no satisfactory answer. Finally, I asked a local friend about the reason. He was a historian at one of Hong Kong’s University. At first he tried to deny that this existed but then later said the roots of it were historical. *“Do you know,”* he said, *“the British came to Hong Kong in 1841 and when they tried to build the first police force with the help of locals, they realized that the loyalty of the locals could not be trusted to follow their orders or shoot and kill if their fellow brethren revolted or were a rebellion. But they realized that they didn’t have the same experience in India. So they brought the Indians.* *The first