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It’s very easy to write on issues of dastardly murders as its definitely an incident that would invite everybody’s attention but if it’s a gruesome or dastardly murder of a seven year old child just imagine what would be the traumatic condition of his or her parents.

The very purpose to exist in life for them actully becomes meaningless as nothing is more precious, invaluable and of infinite significance than a son or daughter for parents. The grusome murder of 7 year old Pradyuman reminds me of the most dastardly and despicable murder of Geeta and Sanjay Chopra at Budha Jayanti Park near Dhaula Kuan after being raped and kidnapped, both, the only children of their parents who finally shifted to Canada in 1982, as India for them sounded in the aftermath of this unforgettable tragedy as the no men’s land where for them living was literally of no meaning.

Choudhary Charan Singh was then the prime prime minister of India during 1979 to 1980. This brutal murder of these adolocent brother and sister was the banner news of every leading newspaper of the country with the then Chowdhary Charan Singh’s government in a dock. There was national outrage and finally the hardened criminals and killers were hanged to death on extreme public pressure.

But in the present case of seven year old Pradyuman of Ryan International School and the murderer, the situation is just different. While the murderers in the school children, Geeta and Sanjay Chopra’s case were hardened criminals and professionals who were finally hanged to death to calm down the national and international outrage, in the 16 year old killer delinquent in Pradyman’s murder’s case there is every possibility of the 11th class adolocent going scot free after the maximum three year old sentence in the reformation centre with no fool proof guarantee whether he will be reformed or come out becoming a more hardened criminal as several past examples of delinquent criminals show.

It may be recalled that the reformation centres in a way give these delinquent criminals more opportunity to become hardened criminals than getting reformed as they think that they have neither been given rigorous punishment nor the sentence is long as in the case of adult criminals who get complete term or even capital punishments, in rarest f the rare matters like Nirbhaya and the above Sanjay and Geeta Chopra case.

But when we talk of the shoddy investigation of the Gurgaon police in the matter, unjustfiably involving the bus driver Ashok Kumar as the killer and publicly making him agreeable out of duress and pressure. Such ridiculous investigation in an outrageous murder of a 7 year old child keeping the real culprit at bay reminds us of the much hyped AARUSHI TALWAR case in which the parents had to undergo 4 years of rigorous imprisonment to be finally released by the Allahabad High Court.

SUNIL NEGI

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The tensions between  US and Russia mounted as the additional United States and NATO troops are positioning themselves in the first week of January 2017 in Poland, Baltic nations and Romania before Donald Trump’s inauguration, Russian led military bloc that includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are meeting in St Petersburg on December 26th for appropriate response to NATO’s move.

An armoured brigade of US combat team from Fort Carson is set to be deployed in Poland and other US-NATO battalions in Baltic nations of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia and Romania.

This heightening of activities were due to 2014 Russian annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and the increased presence of Russian military and deployment of S-400 surface-to-air missiles and nuclear capable Iskander systems in the exclave of Kaliningrad bordering Poland and Lithuania thus destabilizing European security. Due to Russia’s aggressive military designs, Baltic nations have doubled their military spending including hardware and weaponry.

The North Atlantic Treaty organization (NATO) is a military alliance of 28 countries formed on the purpose that an armed attack against one Nato member shall be considered an attack against all of them. (Nato member includes Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, UK, USA, Greece, Turkey, Germany, Spain, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Albania, Croatia) 

The Kremlin claims that military posturing is aimed at countering US nuclear arsenal in the event of war. The United States activated the first phase of missile defense system in Romania in May and another stage is due in Poland in 2018.

Actually President Vladimir Putin ultimate aim is to practically destroy NATO and bring the old European countries that were previously under the Soviet Union back into the Russian empire.

To achieve this end, Russian government has been hacking politicians servers, US government officials, agencies, violating the rules in order to change the world order and dividing the European Union by funding the anti-EU political parties and sow discord over Muslim immigration caused due to crisis in Middle East especially Syria and Iraq.

It is now incumbent on Trump to checkmate Russian designs.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

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Much is being talked about how US President-elect Donald Trump  foreign policy will unfold in the Middle East where America is leading the coalition to fight ISIS, some critical decisions about Pacific where China, a close ally of North Korea is determinant power will also have a bearing on US-China changing relations. With Trump  devising new terms and conditions for the military alliance between US-Japan-South Korea after January 20th whereby these countries will have to put their defense expenditure, China  with its massive military built up in South China Sea will aggressively confront US to dictate terms to bring North Korea for the resumption of six-party talks.

Meanwhile, China is opposing unilateral sanctions on North Korea outside the framework of Security Council resolutions. 

Tensions on the Korean Peninsula reached a high level in 2015 when Pyongyang conducted two nuclear tests and a string of ballistic missile launches and as a response South Korea is about to complete the deployment of an advanced US missile defense system by May 2017. The tensions will further rise as Russia, China and North Korea termed the action of US  and Seoul as provocative. But Park Geun-hye impeachment has created political uncertainty in South Korea. 

If Trump is thinking of having normal ties with Russia  and using Moscow card to browbeat China then he is bound to fail as because Russia-China ties are far deeper than US-Russia understanding though Putin had in someway helped Trump win the US Presidential elections.

Admiral Harry Harris, head of the US Pacific Command ,warned China that Washington would not accept Chinese control of the South China Sea, despite Beijing’s having undertaken rapid development of artificial islands capable of hosting military planes.

Harris further added “We will cooperate where we can but we will be ready to confront where we must and the US fought its first war following our independence to ensure freedom of navigation”.  

Trump may have to tackle China by involving countries having ties with both the countries and will have to take into confidence his own intelligence agencies,especially the CIA as well as moderate Republican  and Democratic members of Congress.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

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China and India are ranged against each other in every respect. India has become  a key US partner and the two militaries have participated in numerous bilateral exercises during the past decade. While China, a all-weather friend of Pakistan and allied with Russia and North Korea claims large chunks of Indian territory in Arunachal Pradesh, Kashmir and Uttarakhand. China has therefore been opposing and curtailing India’s interests and influence in various international forums. 

The Nuclear Supplier’s group agreed in October 2008 to treat India differently with special exemption in following the stringent guidelines but China has reiterated that it will continue to oppose India’s joining  till a consensus emerges on allowing in countries that have not signed the Non-Nuclear Proliferation Treaty. 

India’s bid to join the NSG in June was backed by the US and France  but China, South Africa, New Zealand and Austria opposed it. Despite the clean waiver and special exemption made for India, NSG members including Australia argued that it will not supply nuclear fuel to India unless India signs nuclear non-proliferation treaty.

Currently, the NSG has the membership  of 46 nuclear supplier countries including China, Russia and the United States. 

Chinese String of pearls include several major maritime choke points such as the Strait of Mandeb, the Strait of Malacca, the Strait of Hormouz  as well as other strategic centres in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and the Maldives thus aggressively  encircling India’s position.

As part of this policy, China said it will continue to support Pakistan and block India’s efforts to get the imposition of UN sanctions on the Jaish-e- Mohammad chief Masood Azhar. 

As an extension of its anti-India policy it has recently threatened Magnolias against seeking financial assistance from India. As India provided Mongolia with aid of USD one billion.

To completely damage India-Nepal historical ties, China has completed rail-road connectivity with Nepal to boost cargo trade as a part of Belt and Road (Silk Road ) initiative. India will be better advised to spell its foreign policy towards China in a bold manner.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

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US President-elect Donald spoke directly with the President of Taiwan, a move that has infuriated China and shows uncertainty over US policy towards Asia.
Trump is wooing countries having strategic clash with China. China charges that Trump’s policy amounts to collecting “protection money” by referring to his statement to make the US’s allies pay America for helping defend them. 

Giving an insight into his foreign policy, Donald Trump posted a tweet “The President of Taiwan Tsai Ing-wen called me today to wish me congratulations on wining the Presidency. Thank you!” This almost reverses US policy of recognizing ‘Taiwan-China as One China’ followed since Jimmy Cartar in 1979; rather the US President elect has made it clear to China that henceforth it will not follow the submissive diplomatic decisions of the previous administrations and the President of the United States of America will talk to whom so ever he wants in the interest of his country and nobody can dictate any sort of terms to the superpower. 

After China criticized US for taking the call of Taiwan, Trump retaliated via twitter by letting it know that it never consulted US for devaluing their currency and for building  a massive military complex in the South China Sea. 

He conveyed a clear message to China that Washington is going to get tough in its dealing with Beijing and the world should not underestimate him in handling the world affairs.  

Acknowledging that Taiwan has become militarily weak and economically ruined because of China’s policies and Trump has worked out a plan to upgrade the status of US representation in Taiwan thereby restoring full diplomatic relations with it.

President Tsai Ing-wen will meet members of Trump’s team while in New York on her way to Central America. 

Trump refuses to even entertain any interference from China in this regard and Communist Party authorities will be closely watching all the developments keenly.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

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Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif managed to replace COAS Gen Raheel Sharif with General Qamar Javed Bajwa despite Raheel’s popularity across different sections in Pakistan that even urged him to stage a sort of coup with Pervez Musharraf on his side. With the escalated India-Pakistan border tensions having implications, Bajwa’s credentials as a through professional may have regional and global dimensions. 

AS Donald pledged to eliminate ISIS from the Middle East  while Pakistan has been the main training grounds for Islamic terrorists and the continuous terror attacks on Indian armed forces since 2015 has further confirmed that there is no change in Islamabad’s policy on terrorism. 

During Raheel Sharif’s tenure numerous major terror attacks were carried out on Indian forces coupled with ceasefire violations after the September 29 Surgical strikes by India  to up his claim for political space in Pakistan. Needless to say that terror strike on Army camp at the XVI Corps headquarters in Nagrota near Jammu  and another attack on BSF patrol at Chamliyal in the Ramgarh sector of Samba district may come to be known as his parting acts. 

After the January 2017 inauguration of US President- elect Donald Trump, India will gain an upper hand in dealing with Pakistan. But Pakistan Army chief Bajwa having vast experience of serving as Commander FCNA (Force Command Northern Areas )of Gilgit-Baltistan, and Chief of Staff as well as GOC 10 Corps (the Pakistani Corps which is responsible for operations along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir) and well versed with Kashmir affairs may opt in favour of restoring ties along with new ceasefire deal that may also spur Nawaz Sharif hitherto sagging image in Pakistan. 

Nawaz Sharif who is aware of the new US leadership considering to designate Pakistan as a terror state, will weigh in favour of normalizing India-Pakistan ties and Bajwa will try to dispense with the concept of regarding terrorist outfits as a  strategic assets of Pakistan against India. 

As China is a close ally of Pakistan but tries to maintain good relations with US may also pay heed to India terror concerns which was previously ignored.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

267

The Islamic State is on the backfoot in Iraq and Syria due to the coalition operations by Iraqi Army, Kurdistan forces  and Russian air raids in Syria along with US support,the jihadist group is trying to find a foothold in Egypt. 

The Egyptian President Abdel -Fattah Al Sisi announced his support for the Syrian, Libyan and Iraqi armies combating the so-called “Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham”(ISIS). 

The Egyptian Army is on a mission to expel the remaining Islamic State terrorists  from the Sinai Peninisula. The Islamic State or ISIS was created when US withdrew troops from Iraq leaving a vacuum resulting in the merging of the fringe elements of Saddam Hussein’s Baathist Party as well as residual elements of different ethnic groups that supported Muammer Gaddafi in Libya all of whom continue to work in a loose coordination for the ISIS. 

But Egypt had been facing political turmoil since 2011 when anti-government protests against Hosni Mubarak broke out in 2011 and Mohamed Morsi who was in prison became president after his party Muslim Brotherhood won the election.As Morsi was facing charges of espionage  and initiating anti-government protests in 2011.As military chief, current Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi led the public movement to overthrow Morsi in July 2013. The Egyptian government and other Muslim-majority countries declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organisation. 

But the highest court in Egypt has quashed the life sentence imposed on the country’s former president, Mohamed Morsi. The deposed president remains in prison on a separate espionage conviction, despite the recent ruling by Egypt’s Court of Cassation. 

He is still serving a concurrent 40-year sentence on charges he spied for Qatar, the Persian Gulf nation that supported his administration and also serving a 20-year sentence for alleged involvement in anti-government clashes outside Egypt’s presidential palace in 2012. 

The Egyptian Army is now engaged in eliminating ISIS from Sinai Peninsula . There are reports that the leader named Wali has distributed the responsibilities pertaining to security, military affairs, bomb making and media . 

Shadi el-Menei is the media spokesperson of the group and a well known Bedouin militant . Menei was originally from Ansar Beit al-Maqdis outfit where after he shifted allegiance to the Islamic State in November 2014.

Ansar Beit al-Maqdis outfit  got split from the Mujahidin Shura Council consisting of Jihadist Palestinian militants from the Gaza strip and the local Bedouin veterans that conducted attacks on Israel after Mubarak’s overthrow in 2011. 

Actually, The Western Powers consisting of US, Russia and European nations have merged to eliminate ISIS or ISIL jihadist group from the Middle East .

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

288
Nuclear Testing

America comes forward to support S Korea against N Korea

The North Korea has done its fifth nuclear test and the whole World has united against it which is a good move and recently United States and China have also agreed to deploy an additional THAAD battery in South Korea after the threat from North Korea.

The United States President Barack Obama has taken this threat seriously and House Press Secretary, Josh Earnest said that he is committed to protect Americans. He further told that the Security Council told him over the weekend that indicated that they were going to consider additional economic sanctions which could be imposed against North Korea for their continued and flagrant violations of a variety of Security Council resolutions.

This statement of Josh has cleared that America is very serious about this matter and whole International Community has come forward  to stand against North Korea because this is an alarming situation and if Countries will not take it seriously then North Korea can do anything to exploit its nuclear power.

America is also working on further steps which will isolate North Korea and Josh also told that there is some important work to be done at the UN and the US will be supportive in that process. There is THAAD battery that has been deployed to Guam.

Recently America and South Korea has done an agreement in which it was decided that an additional THAAD battery in South Korea will be deployed and all of this has been oriented against the threat from North Korea.

Barack Obama also told that he is pleased with Chinese because they have contributed in constructing a pressure on North Koreans and he believes that there is more that they could do in this situation.

Obama also had various conversations with Chinese President Xi (Jinping), about the need to deal with this situation a priority.