September 19, 2017

View from India: Behind Delhi’s ‘Pakistan Quandary’

A view of Digwar, a small bordering town on the bank of Betarh Nullah, in Haveli District of Pakistan-administered Kashmir. Half of this village is in Pakistan-administered Kashmir while the half of it is in Indian-administered Kashmir. At the far end of this view, is the Poonch city in Indian controlled Kashmir. (Photo by Muzaffar Bukhari, Creative Commons License)

India needs subtle strategies to contain and counter “threats” from Pakistan. The jingoistic and threatening rhetoric in a section of Indian media in response to each “provocation” from Pakistan does India no good. India’s power ought to be felt by its adversaries and not flaunted. Read More »

Pakistan: Another Gibraltar?


Between a rock and a hard place, having burnt his boats there is no other choice for Pakistan’s opposition leader Imran Khan but to achieve his objective to obtain “by a little bit of madness” the elusive freedoms that is the right of all Pakistanis in a real democracy. Read More »

Challenges for the Afghan Government

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry sits with Abdullah Abdullah, left, and Ashraf Ghani, right, at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan on July 12, 2014, after he helped broker an agreement on a technical and political plan to resolve the disputed outcome of the election between them. (State Department photo/ Public Domain)

Only bilateral and multilateral trust and sincerity will help promote the national reconciliation in Afghanistan. But the ground situation hardly portends well because Dr Abdullah Abdullah, the Afghan People’s Dialogue on Peace, India and Russia on the one hand, and Dr Ashraf Ghani, Pakistan, USA, and China, on the other, find themselves at variance. Read More »

Greed, Corruption and Accountability

(ViewsWeek photo)

Notwithstanding the necessity for controlling corruption in the third world, the actual problem lies in the first world failing to implement the laws of their land. Most illegal money travels to US and EU countries, considerable sums flow to newly emerging countries in Asia, quite sizable amounts go to China. Read More »

Border Skirmishes: India, Pakistan Back to Blame Game

A Pakistani soldier aims at Indian territory from his check post on the country's "Working Boundary" with India. (Photo from videostream)

The latest India-Pakistan border tensions indicate a strategic shift in New Delhi’s policy which is becoming more aggressive with each passing day. Reports from India indicate that the new policy is being orchestrated by the country’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, a decorated former intelligence official. Read More »

Is Pakistan Headed to Early Elections?

Election season has virtually started in Pakistan. (Photo by Mustafa Mohsin, Creative Commons License)

Increased political activity suggests a hint of elections in Pakistan, maybe only 6-9 months away. The incumbent PML (N) may emerge as the party with most seats after electoral reforms and early elections but could lose its absolute dominance in Punjab. Read More »

Why Emperor Akbar Haunts Hindutva

Hindutva's saffron flag. (Photo by Bharath Joshi, Creative Commons License)

There has been a traditional affinity, even bonding, between Hindu and Muslim extremists of the subcontinent. They have both mistrusted the liberals within their respective folds. It was natural, therefore, for Hindutva in India to emulate its narrow-minded Muslim counterparts in Pakistan to jointly target the genial Emperor Akbar, otherwise considered a symbol of enlightenment and religious tolerance. Read More »

Malala Brings Home the Nobel

(Photo via Dawn)

For many in her hometown of Swat and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, the significance of a Pashtun girl wining the Nobel is clear. To them it is an historic event from which Malala Yousafzai has emerged, perhaps somewhat incongruously, as mythical a figure as Malalai of Maiwand, the Pashtun folk hero who rallied Pashtun fighters against the British troops during the second Anglo-Afghan War. Read More »

A Culinary Tour of Eid Dishes Across Middle East

The traditional lamb karahi originates from the rustic and traditionally Pukhtun town of Landi Kotal.  (Photo by Fawad Ahmed, via Dawn)

Muslims mark Eid al-Adha celebrations with a feast. Thalia Rahme brings us some traditional and not so traditional recipes prepared by Muslims across the Middle East on that day. Read More »

Pakistan: Frustrating the Rule of Law

One of Pakistan's notorious law breakers, Gullu Butt, breaking cars in Model Town, Lahore.  The event has triggered heated debate on rule of law in Pakistan and even some video games have emerged. (Photo via Express Tribune, Pakistan)

Through selective application of rule of law in Pakistan, judges are frequently straitjacketed and rendered powerless by the wording of the “Law of Evidence”, which frustrates the spirit of justice inherent in any constitutional system. When criminals function in the name of justice (a la Gullu Butt), justice becomes a crime, a public vigilante reaction could than become an existential threat to law and order. Read More »