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Defence and Security
Diwali, otherwise the festival of lights, happiness and good cheer, has been several shades darker this year, with an extensive stretch of the international India-Pakistan border as well as the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir ablaze, not with the traditional “diyas”, but trans-border machinegun and mortar fire.   
 
The army holds a privileged position in the heart of any nation. This is especially so in a country like India, where a vast majority sees it as the only bulwark against existential threats posed by external enemies.  
 
The bankers’ recent move to put a check on 3.2 crore credit and debit cards has sent alarm bells ringing across the country. It was done to curb cyber frauds on the banking system. The move also exposes how insecure the online banking is. Credit/debit card frauds are rising across the globe and cyber experts say India is one of the most vulnerable nations. The system does not have the exact numbers of the victims but it definitely is in millions.  
 
In the 27th year of its continuity, the J&K proxy war is not difficult to predict. The fallout of the Uri attack and the subsequent surgical strikes could be appreciated to be mainly along the LoC or the International Border (IB).   
 

Anthony ensured that the equipping of our military came down to 1962 levels, but Parrikar, together with the present government, appears to be hell bent upon denigrating the soldiers and denying them their dues. Taking cover behind ‘mischievous bureaucrats’ can’t work anymore; responsibilities will have to be taken for such deliberate misdeeds.

 
There is a paradox here, though I cannot quite get my head around it fully. Suddenly, a host of politicians, journalists and analysts seem to have suddenly transformed themselves into a unique mix of professional surgeon and baseball player. All they seem to be talking about are the surgical strikes conducted by our Special Operations Forces (SOF) in the recent past.  
 
The fallout of the trans-border raids in an active “hot peace” environment between India and Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir is always unpredictable, because there are just too many imponderables. The “surgical strike” by hunter-killer teams of the special forces of the Indian Army on fidayeen bases across the Line of Control in the Naugam-Hot Springs-Nangi Tekri area in Kashmir on the night of September 28/29 was one such raid.   
 

On a sunny morning a young shepherd takes his cattle across the lovely winding Namka Chu into the dense pine forests on the ridge above. The cold wind blows in from the north and the boy looks up at the steep mountain ahead of him covered by rhododendrons.

 

While perfect objective control seems an attractive goal to strive for, its attainment is neither viable nor desirable. Not viable because no clear distinction can realistically be made between the politics of civilian groups and the professionalism of the military. As Carl von Clausewitz’s famous dictum goes: “War is merely the continuation of politics by other means”.

 

A time has come to put the grim war time Chief Gen Ved Malik’s signalling: “We will fight and win with what we have” to rest. Soldiers need weapons and unqualified support in pay, allowances, societal respect and attendant prestige to uphold India's sovereignty against external threats, regardless of who the enemy is.

 


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Review
 
 
 
 
spotlight image Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo has confirmed his presence for the occasion. In an exclusive interview with INDIA REVIEW & ANALYSIS, Indonesia’s Ambassador to India, Sidharto R.Suryodipuro, reminded Nilova Roy Chaudhury that the first Chief Guest for India’s Republic Day celebrations, in 1950, w
 
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The words of Ho Chi Minh  “Nothing is more precious than independence and liberty” rang true for the people of the erstwhile East Pakistan when, with increasing brutality, the West Pakistani oppression spread across the land, writes Anwar A Khan from Dhaka
 
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In a significant boost to New Delhi's Act East Policy, India and Japan set up the Act East Forum on Tuesday as agreed during Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to India this year for the annual bilateral meeting that would help to focus and catalyse development in India's Northeast.
 
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During an awards ceremony honouring six serving and former diplomats and international civil servants for their contributions to world peace and development, the UN was hailed as an institution embodying the Diwali spirit of good overcoming evil. Among those who received the award was Assistant Secretary-General Lakshmi Puri, who is al
 
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When a rising power challenges an incumbent one, war often follows. That prospect, known as the Thucydides trap after the Greek historian who first described it, looms over relations between China and the West, particularly America. So, increasingly, does a more insidious confrontation. Even if China does not seek to conquer foreign la
 
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The first thing that one sees when a flight approaches New Delhi is thick smog that envelopes the city and its lack of greenery.  In almost all other major cities of India lack of greenery is the most obvious sight that one sees when approaching it by air.
 
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Pakistan has agreed to allow the rupee to depreciate after holding talks with the International Mone­tary Fund (IMF) on the country's economy.

 
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Two major global changes in the past year; the ‘Brexit’ referendum and the advent of Donald Trump, writes Sandeep Kaur Bhatia

 
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It is also imperative for India to explore other regions for markets. Its trade deficit with Latin America has been narrowing. Also, its trade with Mexico, Colombia and Guatemala has increased, ...

 
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Title: A Ticket to Syria; Author: Shirish Thorat; Publisher: Bloomsbury India: Pages: 254; Price: Rs 399

 
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Gorichen, a majestic peak in the Eastern Himalayas at an altitude of 22,500 feet, is the highest in Arunachal Pradesh. Beautiful to look at and providing a fantastic view from the top, it is extremely tough climb for mountaineers.

 
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It is often conjectured if the reason for long-standing conflicts and insurgencies, in the developing world, especially South Asia, is not only other powers fishing in troubled waters but also the keenness of arms industries, mostly Western, to...

 
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Title: The People Next Door -The Curious History of India-Pakistan Relations; Author: T.C.A. Raghavan; Publisher: HarperCollins ; Pages: 361; Price: Rs 699

 
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Could the North Korean nuclear issue which is giving the world an anxious time due to presence of hotheads on each side, the invasion of Iraq and its toxic fallout, and above all, the arms race in the teeming but impoverished South Asian subcon...