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  • Have We Just Entered An Era of Hope and Opportunity? Will It Last?
    March, 2009 By Sundeep Waslekar

    A few months ago, we celebrated the victory of Barrack Obama in the US elections. We feel justified. Within the first fifty days of his administration, the world is sailing on the winds of peace and reconciliation. We are witnessing a new sense of hope in almost every part of the world.

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  • The Day After the Celebrations
    March, 2009 By Ambika Vishwanath

    In 1910 a German women’s right activist, Clara Zetkin, proposed that every year there should be a world wide celebration on the same day to advocate the rights of women and place their demands on a public space. In 1911 International Women’s Day was born, and today almost a hundred years later, every year on March 8th we celebrate our women. A century ago with only two countries allowing women to vote, such a day was necessary. It brought to the fore front the struggles and challenges that women were facing, and placed their voices on a global forum. Today, decades later the celebrations have taken a different turn where in China, Macedonia, Russia and other countries March 8th is a an official holiday. Large rallies and events are held to celebrate the achievements of great and inspiring women, and the world takes a moment to recognize half its population.

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  • Pakistan’s Sticky Wicket
    March, 2009 By Rohit Honawar

    Living in India we have all heard or experienced the notion of cricket being like a religion to millions of ardent fans. To the people of the subcontinent, the likes of Tendulkar, Murali and Akram are revered regardless of ones religious beliefs, caste, ethnicity or social status. The perception that sports, or in this case cricket, could rise above political uncertainty and turmoil has always held true, no more so than in the Mecca of the sport – South Asia. Yet, the recent attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore challenged that perception, with cricketers and officials being targeted in a brazen terrorist assault reminiscent of the audacious Mumbai attack in November last year. For the sports aficionados the sanctity of their ‘religion’ had been breached – while for Pakistan’s government and the international community, this was another instance of the deepening crisis confronting Islamabad.

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  • Bangladesh: Cracks in the Ice
    March, 2009 By Sahiba Trivedi

    The 2-month old Bangladesh government, under Prime Minster Sheikh Hasina, has just gone through its first acid-test – the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) mutiny in February 2009. Before it could be quelled, this mutiny by the country’s paramilitary force, known as the BDR, left over 74 dead. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s reputation has been enhanced greatly for suppressing the mutiny successfully through political means, instead of resorting to military force. This way, Hasina has also managed to send out a message to the international community that Bangladesh has a stable democratic government at its helm; this is sure to give a much-needed boost to the country’s economy in form of more foreign investment and aid. 

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  • Building Houses on the Sand – Rehabilitation in post-war Gaza
    March, 2009 By Gitanjali Bakshi

    On the 2nd of March 2009, donor countries – mainly the US, UK, GCC nations and the EU - astonished the world with their combined pledge of $5.2 billion, aimed to support reconstruction and rehabilitation in Gaza. The Palestinian Authority (PA) originally hoped to raise $2.78 billion for reconstruction efforts after the December war and final figure of nearly double that amount seemed a rare and fortuitous development.

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  • Embracing the New Left
    March, 2009 By Joyanto Mukherjee

    When one reads about India’s trade partners, the first few names which come up are the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, China and the EU amongst others. What would happen if one would add names such as Brazil, Venezuela and Bolivia to this list? It would normally be seen as a surprise given that historically none of these countries have actually figured as prominent trading partners. All this has undergone a severe change and India is off building stronger relations with countries which are touted to be part of the ‘NEW LATIN LEFT’.

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  • What's Next For Sudan
    March, 2009 By Anumita Raj

    On the 4th of March, 2009, the International Criminal Court issued a warrant for the arrest of Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir. The ICC at The Hague had been preparing for months and finally announced its first warrant ever for a sitting President. 

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  • Can We Challenge Our Ideas?
    February, 2009 By Sundeep Waslekar

    Ideas predate civilization. They even predate humanity. The ideas of fire, weapons and symbols were probably thought of by Homo erectus before the birth of Homo sapiens. 

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