US leverages Delhi-Kabul nexus. But what’s in it for India?

India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval (L) and External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar (C) met the US Special Representative for Afghan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad (R), Delhi, May 7, 2020 The two-hour stopover in Delhi on May 7 by the US special representative for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad, accompanied by the White House official in charge of …

US rams down Taliban pact. Will Afghans throw up?

US Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad (L) called on former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Kabul, Feb, 20, 2020 The manner in which the Trump administration is ramming down the Afghan throat a peace settlement is disconcerting. Delhi’s silence is more so. One shudders to think that comprador elements in the Indian establishment could be silently collaborating …

Pakistan’s exit from FATF list puts India on the spot

US Acting Asst Secy of State Alice Wells  met Pakistan’s Interior Minister Ijaz Shah, Islamabad, Jan. 20, 2020 The media reports that in the Indian estimation there is “a 75 per cent chance” of Pakistan exiting the ‘grey list’ of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) at the plenary of the international body on February 16 …

Saudi placates Pakistan. What about India?

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan received Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan in Islamabad on Dec.26, 2019.  The one-day visit to Islamabad on December 26 by Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah aimed at a reset of the Saudi-Pakistani relationship. What emerges is that Saudis are going the extra league …

The ballad of India’s Kashmir and Israel’s Palestine

Palestinian children play outside their dwelling in al-Eizariya town in the Israeli-occupied West Bank with the Jewish settlement of Maale Adumim in the background.  “I believe the security situation will improve (in J&K), it will allow the refugees to go back, and in your lifetime, you will be able to go back … and you …

Bereft of soft power, India stands diminished in Hindu Kush and Central Asia

Bagh-e Babur (Garden of Babur) in Kabul, Afghanistan The dichotomy between the regime policy and public opinion is nowhere near as sharp as in the world of diplomacy. And nowhere in the contemporary situation is this maxim so sharply visible as in the dalliance of the West Asian oligarchies with Israel. The romance began at …

Expectant hush in Delhi as Sri Lanka chooses president

Top presidential candidates Sajith Premadasa (L) and  candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa (R) greeted each other at a chance encounter in Colombo, October 7, 2019   An engrossing presidential election is due to take place in Sri Lanka on November 16. Considering that this is the first major election in Sri Lanka following the ‘regime change’ in …