Skip to main content


Showing posts from June 20, 2021

Of all agencies, 'snooping powers' to IB is the most worrisome: Here's why

By  Sarita Rani | The Wire  |  Last Updated at December 26 2018 Representative image | Photo: Shutterstock Compulsive public interest litigator ML Sharma can be a pain. But he has on occasion and perhaps by accident been of service to the legal community and it is to be hoped that his Christmas-eve PIL against the MHA surveillance order is taken seriously by the Supreme Court. The Indian government’s charter to 10 security agencies to snoop on its own citizens is not only illegal and bad in law, it offends the senses. All six of them. It is a malicious notification that should have been aborted at the very moment of conception. By this government and the previous one. What is especially worrying, India’s Intelligence Bureau, which tops the list of agencies authorised to snoop into the private communication of citizens, has no charter under Indian law post-independence. That is a fact, not a claim. The IB was born not long after the British East India company faced its first great revol

All the drone companies in China — a guide to the 22 top players in the Chinese UAV industry

Business & Technology China makes most of the world’s non-military drones and most of those are made by one company: DJI. But SupChina has found a thriving industry of around 70,000 smaller players making drones, components, and software. Here are the most important players in an industry that is reshaping the 21st century. Chang Che   Published June 18, 2021 Illustration by Alex Santafe More than 80% of commercial drones in the world are made by Chinese companies, which created the industry: In the early 2000s, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) were used mostly by the military. The U.S.  Predator ,  used in Afghanistan to search for Osama bin Laden , was what most people likely thought of when discussing drones. But in the 2010s, a flood of innovation and investor optimism transformed the drone into entertainment and photography for average consumers, and a useful tool for architects, builders, farmers, filmmakers, game rangers, and many other professionals. Drone applications now ra

China’s ambassador to France praises wolf-warrior diplomacy

MERICS, Berlin Last week, the Chinese Ambassador to France, Lu Shaye, presented his views on the wolf-warrior diplomacy in interviews published by the Chinese news site and the French newspaper L’Opinion. What you need to know: Diplomatic portrait:  Lu is one of China’s most outspoken diplomats in Europe. In March, French media reported on his attempts to prevent Senator Alain Richard from visiting Taiwan and brought to light his letter to researcher Antoine Bondaz calling him a “little rascal” and a “crazy hyena.” Public opinion war:  Lu argued that the West is waging a “war of public opinion (舆论战)” on China. According to Lu, China suffers from not having the “powerful media machine that the West has.” Consequently, he argues, it struggles with communicating its messages via Western outlets and should build up its discourse shaping capacity in the West, including in Europe. Wolf-warrior logic:  China’s assertive style is a means of self-defense, and Chinese diplomats are “s

Xi-eacher’s pet

Trivium China On Tuesday, Xi Jinping responded to a letter written to him by overseas students from Peking University. According to Xinhua, the students – representing 32 countries – wrote Xi to: “[Share] thoughts and experiences they have had while studying and living in China, and expressed their appreciation of the achievements China has made under the CPC's leadership.” Some context:  China’s popularity as a study abroad destination has grown steadily over the past decade, thanks in part to a concerted soft power push by the government aimed at attracting foreign students. Xi urged the students to continue their quest for understanding: "To understand today's China, one must understand the CPC." "[T]he CPC has committed itself to developing the economy [and] eradicating poverty.” "[This is] because it is a political party that strives for both the well-being of the Chinese people and human progress." Get smart:  China’s efforts to win hearts and min

China: Re-packaging western development

Trivium China On Monday, Premier Li Keqiang chaired a meeting of the State Council’s leading small group (LSG) for developing the western region.   Some context:  Officially, the “western region” includes 12 provinces which together account for over 70% of China’s geographical area – but only around a fifth of its economic output. The push to develop this region was initiated back in 1999 under Jiang Zemin. Things have been a bit slow lately:  This is the first time this LSG has met in three years.   The meeting readout evinced a change of tack  ( “The natural resource advantages of wind, light, hydropower and minerals in the western region should be exploited to the full[est].” “Large clean energy bases should be built to strengthen the country’s support capacity in energy and important resources.” Get smart:  Having the poor west catch up with the more affluent east is out. Making the west into an energy base to support the technological development of the rest of China is in

MI5 still risks breaking the law on surveillance data through poor controls

MI5 still risks breaking the law on surveillance data through poor controls – years after it was first warned see url: 21/06/22/mi5_legal_compliance_ ipco_reports/ see full report...A law unto themselves... Quote<<< MI5's storage of personal data on espionage subjects is still facing "legal compliance risk" issues despite years of warnings from spy agency regulator IPCO, a Home Office report has revealed. The sustained legal issues even triggered a Parliamentary statement by Home Secretary Priti Patel, revealing that the domestic spy agency did not have "a culture of individual accountability for legal compliance risk" until external oversight forced change upon the agency. Answering the question of whether MI5's data holdings are "now legally compliant," a Home Office report, published on June 7, said MI5's "implementation of mitigations" for "identified risks" was still under way. G

Modi’s Sinister new Architecture for Government

MOHAN GURUSWAMY: Charles-Louis Montesquieu, was a French judge, man of letters, historian, and political philosopher. He is the principal source of the theory of separation of powers, which is implemented in many constitutions throughout the world.  This model is known as triaspolitica. Under this system of separation of power, the state is broken into three branches or estates of an executive, a legislature, and a judiciary, each with separate and independent powers, and areas of responsibility.  In the USA these divisions are quite obvious with a directly elected President heading the Executive; and two elected Houses of Congress, the House of Representatives elected by legislative districts and hence the people, and the Senate representing the equal states of the union with two senators apiece. While the separation of the Executive and Congress is clear in the USA, in Britain it is blurred with a hereditary monarch, albeit shorn of power, and an Executive chosen from and by the elec

The dragon in the room

It took a long time for the West to recognize the need for an alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative and that it has already stolen a march on it in this domain Narendra Modi participates in the first Outreach Session of the G7 Summit virtually with other leaders, in New Delhi. PTI file photo Harsh V. Pant   Published 22.06.21, 12:20 AM Advertisement As Joe Biden rallied American allies and partners during his first overseas trip since taking on the presidency of the United States of America, China was present everywhere. From the G7 to Nato, it was China’s growing global footprint and aggression that were shaping the conversations as Western nations assessed the single most important global challenge in front of them. After downplaying the Chinese threat for decades, suddenly Western nations find that they are being overtaken by a rival in ways that they had forgotten to appraise in their ‘end of history’ moment. And, now, as Chinese power redefines geopolitics and geoeconomi

CHINA: Party Watch Weekly Report 4|31 6.12.2021-6.18.2021

Party Watch Weekly Report 4|31 Center For Advanced China Research Weekly Report 4|31 6.12.2021-6.18.2021 David Gitter, Julia Bowie, Brock Erdahl, Julie Huynh, Carlisle Micallef, Tyler Parsons, Anna Scott Bell, and Connor Swank Highlights Xi Jinping Responds to Yanhu Community Market gas explosion in Hubei Province, emphasizing safety and stability in advance of centenary celebration (See Senior Leaders Section). During a tour of Jilin province, Politburo Standing Committee Member and State Council Premier Li Keqiang (李克强) promotes economic revitalization of China’s Northeast (See Senior Leaders Section). PLA Daily publishes Xie Xinping (解辛平) commentary on Chinese Communist Party centenary (See Propaganda Work Section). Senior Leaders Xi Jinping Gives Important Instructions on Yanhu Community Market Gas Explosion in Zhangwan District in Shiyan City, Hubei Province  Xinhua News 6.13 On June 13th at 6:40am, a gas explosion occurred in Shiyan City, Hubei Province. So far, the accident has