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  • Deconstructing Terror
    August, 2011 By Sundeep Waslekar

    Sundeep Waslekar comments on the unity and dignity in Norway's response to Anders Breivik's monstrous acts. The Norwegian reaction provides lessons on how to deconstruct terror. 

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  • Vietnam-China: Love Hate Relationship
    August, 2011 By Jot Prakash Kaur

    The bilateral relations between China and Vietnam date back to the 1950s. The six decades of friendly ties saw both countries collaborating on various fronts such as infrastructure and energy. However, there were three territorial disputes which emerged between both the countries during this period. Apart from the dispute over Spratly islands in South China Sea, the other two territorial disputes have been amicably resolved; maritime delimitation in the Tonkin Gulf and land border disputes. In recent times, Vietnam has started improving its ties with other countries, with a special focus on the United States of America (USA). This has been viewed as Vietnam’s desire to involve a third party in resolving the dispute in the South China Sea. Vietnam has also started investing in its defense capabilities. China seems to be upset with these recent developments. In the light of these events and shifting relationships, it is important to examine the future of bilateral ties between China and Vietnam. 

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  • A Friend in Need: Sino-Pak Ties
    August, 2011 By Sahiba Trivedi

    At present, there is intense speculation on whether Sino-Pak ties will be affected by the recent attacks in Kashgar, China that led to Chinese authorities announcing the perpetrators had been trained in Pakistan’s tribal areas. Such a public announcement is extremely rare, especially when considering the fact that Pakistan has been visibly touting the countries as being ‘all weather friends’ in recent months. China is concerned about its restive Xinjiang province and wants to arrest the growth of any terrorist or separatist movements, both within and outside its territories, which may challenge the Chinese state. Despite the terrorism angle to the Sino-Pak equation, bilateral ties are likely to remain unaffected, at least for the next few years.

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  • ‘Mobile’ Changes in the Arab World
    July, 2011 By Shivangi Muttoo

    A year ago, Souktel-a non governmental organization (NGO), announced that it would use an innovative ‘voice recognition’ mobile technology in Morocco to connect illiterate job seekers with prospective employers. The country is confronted with a difficult odd; the adult illiteracy in Morocco is among the highest in the world, and as a result there are a large number of illiterate job seekers. The ‘voice recognition’ mobile technology will enable the illiterate unemployed youth to upload their voice CVs or resumes and send them to employers. This is just one of the many recent examples to show that the use of mobile phones in Arab countries, as in the rest of the world, is no longer about just making calls but increasingly about utilizing mobile phone applications for positive societal changes. Mobile phones have now emerged as a new tool to facilitate socioeconomic development and for political mobilization in Arab countries. 

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  • Health on the Line
    July, 2011 By Anumita Raj

    Like much of India’s highly touted ‘potential’, the healthcare system is hampered by the stunning disparity in wealth that is evident in the country. It doesn’t matter that wealthy foreigners from other parts of the world now fly to India to be treated to some of the best possible medical care and some of the world’s most highly trained physicians. The fact of the matter is that hundreds of millions of people in India still go without the most basic healthcare because the system is either too far removed from them or too expensive for them. 

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  • When will ‘Political Will’ catch up with Technology?
    July, 2011 By Ekta Talwar

    Human beings as inventors and creators have reached a tipping point.  We are transitioning from dependence on oil to reliance on renewable resources and the paradigm-shifting potential of nanotechnology.  Unfortunately, USA and China are fueling their technological growth, in an increasing desperation, to maintain their superpower standing or to gain political negotiation power in the world. 

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  • An Orange, A Rose and A Tulip: Lessons from the North
    July, 2011 By Ambika Vishwanath

    On a recent visit to Ukraine, I landed in Kiev on the first day of the pre-trial hearing of a case against Former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko; a woman who was one of the main leaders of the Orange Revolution of 2004. A member of the current opposition party, she was under investigation for abuse of power and corruption, though to many it seemed that the motivations of the trial were purely political. The charges brought against her are from the camp of current President Yanukovych; interestingly, the very man against whom the revolution of 2004 was against. The main boulevard leading to the Independence Square, home of the revolution in Ukraine, was filled with protestors hoping that this would not mark the end and failure of the famous Orange movement. The judge at the hearing subsequently ruled in favour of a trial, and now (early July 2011) Tymoshenko stands on trial; marking the death of Ukraine’s freedom movement for many. 

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  • Philanthropy in India
    June, 2011 By Anumita Raj

    In today’s day and age, charity is no longer just the immediate kindness we extend to one another. As the scope and scale of the problems in the world have grown, so too has the organized response to tackling them. The word philanthropy has come to denote an entire machinery, a whole infrastructure, comprised of donors, NGOs, corporate houses and more. 

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