Ukraine: America’s monopoly ends…Russia a new superpower?
Mar07

Ukraine: America’s monopoly ends…Russia a new superpower?

It had to happen sooner than later. The US now seems to be realising that foreign affairs and international relations are best managed through discussion and dialogue rather than twisting people’s arms and invading other nations, a la Iraq, Afghanistan, and other countries. An indication to this effect came when the US President Barack Obama urged Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, in a one-hour phone call Thursday, to...

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US ends boycott of India’s Prime Minister-aspirant Narendra Modi
Feb12

US ends boycott of India’s Prime Minister-aspirant Narendra Modi

After humiliating and bycotting Narendra Modi, India’s powerful leader beloging to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the US administration has finally woken up from its Rip Van Winkle sleep after almost a decade. The US ambassador to India, Nancy Powell will meet Narendra Modi on Thursday in Gandhinagar, the capital city of Gujarat, India’s western state that has elected Modi as the Chief Minister three times. The present...

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Live music in Adelaide’s old cinema hall
Feb11

Live music in Adelaide’s old cinema hall

One of the fascinating things I find Down Under is the dedicated participation of volunteers in all spheres of life – cultural, educational, economic and social. It is because of the involvement of the volunteers that Capri Theatre, one of the oldest cinema Halls in Adelaide (the capital city of South Australia), has become a rallying point for those passionate about movies, live theatre, music or comedy. This is heartening...

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India angry with US for arresting diplomat & retaliates
Dec17

India angry with US for arresting diplomat & retaliates

New Delhi not only summoned the US ambassador to register its protest against the arrest of a senior Indian diplomat in America but also initiated a series of steps to strip US diplomats and their families of privileges, including withdrawing all airport passes and stopping import clearances for the embassy. Asking all American consulate personnel and their families to turn in their ID cards immediately, the Indian government has also...

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Who should conduct US foreign policy – CIA/Pentagon or Diplomats?
Oct22

Who should conduct US foreign policy – CIA/Pentagon or Diplomats?

During the past decade, the world has somehow come to believe that the US State Department has just become a sidekick of the Pentagon and the CIA in formulating the American foreign policy. In other words, the US has given up the traditional and time-honoured style of conducting diplomacy through dialogue, discussion and consensus in dealing with contentious issues relating to foreign countries. This public hunch has been more than...

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Environmentalist Sunita Narain injured riding bicycle in Delhi
Oct21

Environmentalist Sunita Narain injured riding bicycle in Delhi

Internationally-acclaimed and India’s pioneering environmental activist, Ms Sunita Narain was seriously injured when her bicycle was hit by a speeding car in the heart of New Delhi. Narain hit international headlines, and made several enemies a decade ago, when her NGO revealed that famous soft drinks brands, including Coca Cola and Pepsico, contained unacceptably high levels of pesticide residues. … Also, see here… A...

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India without Jews soon?
Oct21

India without Jews soon?

Although there is no anti-Semitism in India and the Jews have even occupied top government and military posts, the number of Jews in the country is dwindling fast. The latest development is likely to reduce their number in a dramatic fashion. Of the 5,000 estimated Jews in India, Israel has allowed 899 Indian Jews from states of Manipur and Mizoram, the members of the “lost” Bnei Menashe tribe, to immigrate to the Jewish...

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India: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh vs “Prince” Rahul Gandhi?
Sep29

India: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh vs “Prince” Rahul Gandhi?

Rahul Gandhi, the vice-president of India’s ruling Congress party, dropped a bombshell on Friday when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was set to enjoy his usual bonhomie with the US President Barack Obama in Washington DC. Rahul Gandhi’s vicious attack on the government caused political tremors and confusion. His powerful mother Sonia Gandhi heads the Congress party, and was instrumental in putting Manmohan Singh on the...

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United States of Corruption?
Jul14

United States of Corruption?

If one goes by the findings published in the latest Transparency International report, 76% of the respondents in the United States felt that political parties were corrupt/extremely corrupt. Transparency in campaign and political financing suffered a major setback in 2010. This followed a Supreme Court decision that de facto removed all limits to political spending by corporations and unions. The decision led to the creation of...

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Thus spake President Obama in 2008
Jul14
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America, Edward Snowden & Human Rights
Jul13

America, Edward Snowden & Human Rights

Important Update: “In her first reference to whistleblower Edward Snowden’s case, UN Human Rights Chief Navi Pillay has called on all countries to protect the rights of those who uncover abuses and stressed the need to respect the right for people to seek asylum. Commenting on the fugitive former US intelligence contractor, who is presently wanted by the US for leaking classified details of its surveillance programs, Pillay...

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‘Reforms’: Will India-US Relations Suffer?
Oct04

‘Reforms’: Will India-US Relations Suffer?

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government has created a serious political crisis by introducing a slew of controversial “economic reforms” to “save the crisis-ridden economy”. The entire Opposition has risen as one to protest against the reforms that would allow the entry of “predatory major foreign investors in sensitive sectors.” (See here…) The Congress-led UPA coalition government...

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Narendra Modi Vs Rahul Gandhi: Battle of the Bachelors
Sep26

Narendra Modi Vs Rahul Gandhi: Battle of the Bachelors

India’s general elections are still far away and scheduled to be held in 2014. Interestingly,some leading TV channels and political pundits have already begun to project two candidates for the Prime Minister’s post. While the leading Congress party leaders are now openly proclaiming their party general secretary Mr Rahul Gandhi as their messiah, the leading opposition Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) influential leader Arun...

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Joseph Allen Stein’s Birth Centenary: American Architect’s Imprint on New Delhi
Apr10

Joseph Allen Stein’s Birth Centenary: American Architect’s Imprint on New Delhi

Many rulers and architects have left behind their imprint on the historic Indian city of Delhi over the centuries. While a Mughal king’s artisans built an impressive Shahjahanabad in Old Delhi, the English architect Edward Lutyen’s legacy is the sprawling ‘Imperial’ New Delhi at the height of British Raj. In 1952, the American architect Joseph Allen Stein arrived in the newly Independent India from California and gave a refreshing,...

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Narendra Modi: India’s Next Prime Minister?
Mar30

Narendra Modi: India’s Next Prime Minister?

Who would be the next Prime Minister of India where the General Elections are due in 2014? Indian leaders, ‘public intellectuals’ and the media are showing little interest in this subject as the national electoral exercise in the world’s largest democracy is still two years away. But is this a hypothetical question? However, it is important to note that strong signals have already begun to come from the USA and China indicating...

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Attack on Israeli Diplomat in India: Larger Terror Plan?
Mar09

Attack on Israeli Diplomat in India: Larger Terror Plan?

The attack on Israeli diplomat Tal Yehoshua Koren in New Delhi seems to be part of larger terror plan. According to the Indian police, the conspiracy was hatched for over a year before the first strike on the Israeli diplomat on February 13, reports The Times of India. Police claim the conspirators have been identified, including the bomber who fled India the next day and is now holed up in Malaysia. “Intelligence agencies are...

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America’s First Internet/Facebook Addiction Rehab Clinic
Feb18

America’s First Internet/Facebook Addiction Rehab Clinic

Challenges that the internet poses to health, economic and social well-being of people, especially the young, is becoming a major topic of concern worldwide. The first internet addiction rehab clinic in the United States of America, reStart, has opened in the state of Washington. The clinic works mainly with young adults who have lost control of their internet, gaming, pornography or social media usage, reports Al Jazeera....

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Injured Israeli: On Way Home From New Delhi
Feb17

Injured Israeli: On Way Home From New Delhi

Tal Yehoshua Koren, 40, the Israeli diplomat’s wife who suffered spine and liver injuries in Monday’s bomb attack in New Delhi, today left for her country after she was discharged from a hospital in India’s capital city. (Meanwhile Israel’s Counter Terrorism Bureau has warned of additional attempts to hurt Israelis worldwide, following the recent attacks in Thailand, Georgia and India. A senior official in the...

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Musharraf knew Bin Laden in Pakistan: Who Else Did?
Feb15

Musharraf knew Bin Laden in Pakistan: Who Else Did?

Pakistan’s former ISI chief General Ziauddin Khawaja, also known as Ziauddin Butt (head of the ISI, 1997-1999), claims that then President Pervez Musharraf knew about Osama bin Laden’s presence in Abbottabad. Even if this news is true, it is not shocking. What the world would be eager to know is whether the then American President George W. Bush, the CIA and the Pentagon were in the know about this ugly fact. President...

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Why Iran-Israel ‘War’ Spilled to Indian Soil?
Feb14

Why Iran-Israel ‘War’ Spilled to Indian Soil?

India’s security agencies are worried. Initial investigations have revealed that the modus operandi employed by the person who attacked Israeli embassy staff in New Delhi – by fixing bomb to a car – “mirrored the method used by Mossad earlier to assassinate Iranian scientists.” (Meanwhile, the Israeli diplomat’s wife who was in the car when the explosion took place in New Delhi on Monday is still...

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