Analysis articles

Anti-Zionism in Britain

Anti-Zionism is deliberately conflated with anti-Semitism to suppress legitimate criticisms of Israeli policies. There is no denying that from time to time anti-Semitism raises its ugly head in the UK, as it does in many other countries. What is striking, however, about contemporary Britain is the use of anti-Semitism as a political tool to silence […]

Champaran example

Gandhi’s movement, a century ago, was a political campaign operating in a more hostile environment than today’s. Yet it brought lasting reform without alienating the opposition That 2016 was a year of divisiveness and destructive politics is no overstatement. In India, the year began with the nation divided over the patriotic credentials of a handful […]

Russia first

In New York on Wednesday, President-elect Donald Trump dismissed as “crap” the intelligence reports suggesting Russia has compromising information on him. Trump knows this because, as he tweeted, Russia called it “A COMPLETE AND TOTAL FABRICATION.” And if Vladimir Putin’s government says something, it must be true. But whether or not Russia has such blackmail […]

Iran after Rafsanjani

Rafsanjani’s death has created power vacuum in Iran’s political centre. Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is right to be concerned about the loss of one of the leading members of Iran’s religious establishment in an election year. “With the loss of Hashemi,” he said on Sunday referring to the late Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, […]

Saudi temptation

There has, as yet, not been any denial of Defence Minister Khawaja Asif’s mumbled comments during a TV interview last week about retired Gen Raheel Sharif being appointed the chief of a Saudi-led military alliance. Considering that clear articulation has never been his strong point, one may take the minister’s mutterings as confirmation. But the […]

Britain voted for radical change

When Theresa May surveys the political obstacles ahead of her, the figure of Jeremy Corbyn does not loom large. A prime minister only has time to worry about a limited number of hazards and withdrawal from the European Union brings a unique hierarchy of problems. The Labour party ranks well below Tory backbenchers, continental diplomacy, […]

Heatwave in Arctic and White House

This Christmas, the Arctic had a heatwave, scoring record high temperatures, even in the dark. A chunk of ice the size of the United Kingdom thawed in the warmth. On the other side of the planet, a huge fracture in Antarctica’s ice shelf widened suddenly in December. Long term, the whole ice shelf will probably […]

Respite, not reconciliation

The ceasefire in Syria and the upcoming peace talks in Astana could be the beginning of the long denouement in the war-torn country The Syrian Arab Army now controls Aleppo, which means that the Syrian government once more is in charge of the main population centres in the country. Opposition armed forces are hemmed in […]

Trump’s North Korean family values

With every new US president arriving in Washington, DC, come a handful of counselors and aides whose personal ties, built over years and forged in election campaigns, give them pride of place in the administration. From the “Irish Brotherhood” that brought John F. Kennedy to office to the “Berlin Wall” that guarded Richard Nixon’s door, […]

Facebook founder ready to make his mark in politics

When 13 tech bosses, among them some of the world’s richest entrepreneurs, were summoned for a meeting with United States President-elect Donald Trump, one face was conspicuous by its absence. Facebook’s role in the US election had been much scrutinised: It was accused of being a Petri dish for fake news that allowed anti-Hillary Clinton […]

Istanbul between past and future

This attack is on the culture of tolerance, on the pluralism of Muslim countries that is represented in Istanbul. I have now blissfully forgotten how many times I have visited Istanbul, or why is it I feel so much at home there. Last time I was there was during the last World Cup, Brazil 2014, […]

Happy birthday to Bangladesh Students’ League

Piercing hazy atmosphere wrapped with blanket of fog, cool air of the ending night is continuously touching the city’s houses made of bricks and stones. 400 years old magic city is frozen with cold. A little moment remains to end the night. City dwellers are sleeping. Terrible silence is all around. Sodium lights are sparkling. […]

A year to protect democracy

The most important political task of 2017 transcends the normal run of issues and controversies. Our greatest obligation will be to defend democracy itself, along with republican norms for governing and the openness that free societies require. To say this is not alarmist. Nor is it to deny the importance of other issues. Preserving the […]

Hidden force for uneasiness

It is indisputable that the current international zeitgeist is definitely characterised by a profound uneasiness. The sense for many is that the international order as it is currently known is, at least, in check. The signs are plenty: the environmental crisis, the financial crisis of 2008, the rise of the far-right in Europe, Brexit and […]

Afghanistan, India, and Trump

Given his limited choices in stabilising Afghanistan, which include supporting a national election, U.S. President-elect Donald Trump will find India to be a reliable and trusted partner in this process On January 20, next year, Donald Trump will take over as the 45th President of the United States of America, at a time when the […]

Make America 1953 again

It is axiomatic that if someone is sufficiently eager to disbelieve something, there is no Everest of evidence too large to be ignored. This explains today’s revival of protectionism, which is a plan to make America great again by making it 1953 again. This was when manufacturing’s postwar share of the labor force peaked at […]

Legacy of Crusades

The conflict between the West and the Arab and Islamic worlds is at its core political. It is always debatable whether the Crusades remain relevant in Arab political rhetoric. Islamists in general believe that the Crusades are relevant because they resemble – in their minds – current Western and Israeli wars in our region. Many […]

Bibi goes ballistic

One of the all too few redeeming features of the exceptionally dismal year now passing into history has been Benjamin Netanyahu’s relentless tantrum over a United Nations Security Council resolution. All that he wanted at this gift-giving time of year was a wretched veto, which has been the norm for close to 40 years. But […]

Rise of populist leader

Miklos Haraszti is a Hungarian author and director of research on human rights at the Center for European Neighborhood Studies of Central European University. Hungary, my country, has in the past half-decade morphed from an exemplary post-Cold War democracy into a populist autocracy. Here are a few eerie parallels that have made it easy for […]

A boxful of Xmas memories

Christmas brings good cheer and revelry and rekindles our innate warmth towards each other. It is also a doleful season for the unloved. Christmas blues is a syndrome with characteristics of depression. Suicide rates spike in forlorn crevices of Europe and the victims are the lonely folks, overlooked or ignored in the hullaballoo. Extremists of […]

Hidden force of current international uneasiness

Recent events are evidence of the failures of neoliberalism as the dominant ideology in the international order. It is indisputable that the current international zeitgeist is definitely characterised by a profound uneasiness. The sense for many is that the international order as it is currently known is, at least, in check. The signs are plenty: […]

Muslims hold their breath

It was here, in this midsize college town in the dead center of Tennessee, that a right-wing effort to ban Islamic law found one of its first sponsors. Here, too, a congressman co- sponsored a plan to “defund Muslim ‘refugees’?” and local residents sued to block construction of the only mosque, a fight that ended […]

Palestine saga

The twilight of Barack Obama’s presidency may seem an odd time to propose a new policy initiative for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But, although it is the eleventh hour, it is not too late; it is the last chance to do something constructive and to leave behind a positive legacy. The beginning of wisdom is […]

The international barriers to Trump’s economic plan

US President-elect Donald Trump should have a relatively clear road ahead at home for the implementation of his economic program: With Republicans holding majorities in both houses of Congress, he seems likely to benefit from a break in the political gridlock that has paralyzed the body for the last six years. But the US economy […]