Analysis

Atlanta shootings show hate crimes against Asians in US continues unabated
Analysis, Featured, North America, World

Atlanta shootings show hate crimes against Asians in US continues unabated

At least eight people, including six Asian women, were killed in shootings at three different Asian-owned spas in the US state of Georgia on Tuesday. The shootings have triggered fears that Asian-run businesses may have been deliberately singled out. The shooting spree came as reports of attacks against Asian Americans including Indians, primarily elders, have […]

Russia and China to partner to build a lunar station – Beginning of new alliance in space race?
Analysis, Featured, Science & Technology, World

Russia and China to partner to build a lunar station – Beginning of new alliance in space race?

The deal between Chinese and Russian space agencies for a lunar station shows the strained relations between NASA and Roscosmos
Russia and China did not sign the NASA established the “Artemis Accords”, a series of bilateral agreements with various space agencies
The latest Russia-China agreement for the same purpose is now seen as a counter to the US led lunar consortium.
Another aspect which resulted in the Russia-China space partnership is strained relations between US and China.
On the other hand, Indian, Japanese and European space agencies are joining hands for several joint missions.
Alliances is a norm in deep space exploration but forming of different alliances for the same purpose may be a precursor to the ensuing ‘space race’.

Tibet Climate Crisis – A call to action
Analysis, Asia, Featured, World

Tibet Climate Crisis – A call to action

Tibet is warming three times faster than the rest of the world and natural disasters such as droughts, landslides and floods are increasing in frequency.
One of the key threats faced by Tibetans today is the eradication of their environment
In recent years, China’s exploitation of Tibet’s natural resources has gathered pace significantly and Tibetans have no power to protect their own land
For China’s government, Tibet’s water is another resource to be exploited, for hydro-electric power, diversion to supply people elsewhere in China
Large Scale mining, damming and deforestation are leading to the Tibetan glacier melting at a faster rate
The risks in Tibet is a global concern and requires decisive action from all countries to avoid a humanitarian crisis on unimaginable proportions in the coming decades.

Free Flowing Lies of Freedom House and its Suppression of Facts
Analysis, Featured, National

Free Flowing Lies of Freedom House and its Suppression of Facts

The “Freedom in the World“ report takes a hit for its half truths, putting findings out of context, and suppressing facts by being subjective.
By having considerations of religious orientation of the candidates in their evaluation of how free a country is, the report implies that a community can be taken care of only by a person belonging to the same community.
The report comes to false and misleading conclusions over CAA and NRC ad hides the truth about Islam being the state religion of the neighbouring countries
If any rating agency describes a court ruling as favorable to some party instead of talking specific details of judgment only shows how immature and clueless the rating agency is about its methodology.
Instead of looking at the lockdown from the larger needs of a nation and overall safety of the society, the rating agency’s priority is somebody’s right to protest during a pandemic
There are many flaws in the Freedom report (in relation to India) that raises a big question on the objectivity of the report.

China’s work scheme planned to reduce Uighur population density in Xinjiang says study
Analysis, Asia, Featured, World

China’s work scheme planned to reduce Uighur population density in Xinjiang says study

A study by Nankai University of China shows that the government labour programmes in Xinjiang are mostly designed to reduce the population density of the Uighur ethnic minority group.
The report provides new evidence from Chinese sources that show Xinjiang’s labor transfers to other regions or provinces in China meet the forced labor definition of the ILO.
The report indicates that labor transfers are not just serving economic purposes, but are implemented with the intention to forcibly displace the ethnic minority populations from their heartlands

The ‘Pineapple’ in China’s flesh – How the tropical fruit helped Taiwan fight economic bullying by its Communist neighbour
Analysis, Asia, Featured, World

The ‘Pineapple’ in China’s flesh – How the tropical fruit helped Taiwan fight economic bullying by its Communist neighbour

China imposed a blanket ban on all imports of Taiwanese pineapples last week, alleging that “harmful organisms” had been found in the fruit.
President Tsai condemned China for its “ambush-like, unilateral notice that it would ban imports of Taiwan pineapples”, despite the fact that 99.79 percent of imported batches had passed inspection.
China’s move has been interpreted by observers in Taiwan as directed at the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which is frequently critical of China.
Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu launched the “Freedom Pineapple” campaign on Twitter. The aim of the online campaign was to secure orders for pineapple from farmers
Taiwanese farmers received pre-orders for 41,687 tons of pineapples from companies, e-commerce platforms, and consumers, already exceeding the annual quantity of exports to China.
With the call to take on the ban by China, Taiwanese businesses and citizens made up for the potential shortfall in sales by buying an entire year’s worth of the tropical fruit in just four days!
The U.S., Japan, and Canadian embassies in Taiwan all came on board to help promote Taiwan’s pineapples, in response to a Chinese import ban on the fruit.
While Taiwan has shown that it can stand up to economic bullying, it has also offered the olive branch to China urging it to respect its fruit inspection negotiation system.

Central Bank Digital Currency – Why India must consider it seriously
Analysis, Featured, National

Central Bank Digital Currency – Why India must consider it seriously

Digital payments in India have grown at a phenomenal speed, some accounts suggest that there has been an overall 60% rise in the use of digital payments since demonetisation
A central bank digital currency would be an electronic form of central bank money that could be used by households and businesses to make payments.
Digital currency does not have to replace bank notes in fact it will complement bank notes. Rs 500 digital currency would have the same value as Rs 500 physical note.
Unlike a flat currency, digital currency is by its nature traceable. Digital currencies can show the movement of money in an economy. It can build a record of the trail of transactions as it changes hands.
Digital currency can be programmed to reach a certain section of society in a very specific time. This will be a great tool for the government to reach out to backward classes of the country with specific schemes.
However, there are many challenges ahead such as creating a safe and protected infrastructure. Just as any algorithm is susceptible to hacking, digital currencies too are prone to hacking
Digital currency is a good move by the government and the RBI as it is the next and natural progression to a digital and cashless economy as envisioned by PM Narendra Modi.

China’s new Coastguard law – An open call for war with neighbors?
Analysis, Asia, World

China’s new Coastguard law – An open call for war with neighbors?

China’s newly-enacted Coast Guard Law allows the Chinese Coast Guard (CCG) to “take all necessary measures, including the use of weapons, when national sovereignty, sovereign rights, and jurisdiction are being illegally infringed upon by foreign organizations or individuals at sea.”
The new law also empowers the CCG to halt construction or destroy foreign structures on Chinese-claimed land features, like those on the Philippine-occupied Pag-asa Island and Second Thomas Shoal.
Several Asian countries including Japan, the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia have opposed China’s law saying it could escalate maritime disputes and be invoked to assert “unlawful claims”.
The Philippines has filed a formal rejection of the law, emphasizing that, given the large area involved and China’s ongoing disputes in the South China Sea, the law is a verbal threat of war to any country that defies it.
The lack of a definition of ‘jurisdictional waters’ in the final version of the new law will increase the potential for conflict.
In addition to creating opportunities for misunderstandings between foreign vessels and the CCG, it gives the coastguard flexibility to conduct law enforcement outside of its traditional jurisdictional waters.

Chinese firms buying out British schools that are under financial stress; Ploy to expand Chinese influence over Britain’s education system, investigation reveals
Analysis, Europe, Featured, World

Chinese firms buying out British schools that are under financial stress; Ploy to expand Chinese influence over Britain’s education system, investigation reveals

Hundreds of independent schools which are under financial stress after the impact of coronavirus pandemic are being targeted by Chinese investors
Nine of the 17 schools under Chinese control are owned by firms whose founders or bosses are among China’s most senior Communist Party members;
Schools are using educational tools for teaching children a ‘whitewashed’ view of China
One firm admitted its acquisition of British schools is aimed at supporting China’s controversial Belt And Road strategy, which aims to expand Beijing’s global influence.
This is not a new phenomenon as it was reported way back in 2015 that Chinese investors were buying Britain’s schools.
Neither the British government nor the opposition saw the threat from such buying of schools.
Will the British take control of their schools back? Brexit Party founder Nigel Farage and Conservative MP Tom Tugendhat have raised their voices on the issue but there has been no official response from the British government over the revelations of the Daily Mail investigation

Texas blackout has 3 Million people in the dark and freezing as severe cold weather leaves 21 dead; Blackout points to systematic failure, say experts
Analysis, North America, World

Texas blackout has 3 Million people in the dark and freezing as severe cold weather leaves 21 dead; Blackout points to systematic failure, say experts

3 Million Texans and several thousands elsewhere are still in the dark following extreme cold weather that caused the state’s worst blackouts in decades.
A confluence of factors has led to the historic blackouts, as the electricity company which supplies power has attributed the outage to freezing temperatures and unprecedented surge in demand for power
State officials have called for investigations into the chain of events as experts say there are a number of steps the state can take to avoid similar episodes in the future.
These measures include weatherizing equipment, increasing reserve margins, building more reliable infrastructure systems, moderate renewable energy systems and joining the national grid