thecatapult.in is a new blog focusing on the matters concerning the Indian national interests, strategy and the affairs of the State.
The First Post today is about the Chinese side war gaming a scenario on the Tibetan plateau and the border with India in case of a (planned?!) steady deterioriation of relations leading to war with India after the conclusion of the Beijing Olympics.
And see the intolerance of the UNHRC to any criticism of its conduct and the threat to ban the UN Watch representative’s speech. This has become a stalinist organisation through and through dominated by the same third world dictatorial thugs from many parts of Asia, Africa, the Arab world and latin America who are supposed to be held accountable by this body.
Also Watch the Speeches Not Banned at the UNHRC by UN Watch.
As the Earth’s icy north melts due to Global warming the countries around the Arctic ocean make a mad rush to gain control of its natural resources.
Riches Await as Earth’s icy North Melts
The latest report by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says the ice cap is warming faster than the rest of the planet and ice is receding, partly due to greenhouse gases. It’s a catastrophic scenario for the Arctic ecosystem, for polar bears and other wildlife, and for Inuit populations whose ancient cultures depend on frozen waters.
But some see a lucrative silver lining of riches waiting to be snatched from the deep, and the prospect of timesaving sea lanes that could transform the shipping industry the way the Suez Canal did in the 19th century.
The US Geological Survey estimates the Arctic has as much as 25 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil and gas. Russia reportedly sees the potential of minerals in its slice of the Arctic sector approaching $2 trillion.
All this has pushed governments and businesses into a scramble for sovereignty over these suddenly priceless seas.
The Public spotlight that was on the Indo-US nuclear deal until it was passed by the US Congress and signed by President Bush into law in December last year has dissipated. But it is now that the real drudge work to hammer out an 123 agreement, getting NSG approval and an India specific safeguards agreement with the IAEA has to be done.
Brahma Chellaney in an op-ed piece titled Long-Maul Exercise in The Asian Age analyses the action that is taking place behind the scenes.
The controversial US-India nuclear deal may not be in the news these days but it quietly continues to ferment new issues. Even as America and its friends persist with their hard sell of the deal, increasing doubts about the wisdom and costs of pushing ahead with it on terms set by the US Congress have gripped the Indian establishment.
The projected timeframe for stitching up the final deal continues to slip. When the agreement-in-principle was unveiled on July 18, 2005, it was sanguinely claimed by both sides that by spring of 2006, the deal would take effect. Then when the Hyde Act was passed, US officials voiced optimism that the final deal would be before Congress by July 2007.
Now Washington has further revised the deadline to late 2007 or early 2008. Even that seems overly optimistic when one bears in mind that after almost 20 months, only the first of the five phases has been completed to clinch the final deal. There is still a long road ahead for the two sides to traverse.
Let’s not forget that the US-China nuclear deal, signed in 1984, took nearly 14 years to come into force, and another nine years thereafter for Beijing to place its first import order for US reactors. The US-India deal, in fact, involves more processes and complicating factors. Long after the original actors involved in the July 18, 2005, accord have faded into history, India would still be grappling with the deal-related issues.
Indeed the deal’s main benefit for India remains the symbolically important message of July 18, 2005 that the United States, reversing a three-decade punitive approach toward India, has embraced it as a “responsible” nuclear state.In other words, India is already savouring the main gain from the deal.
The actual incentive proffered by the US — the lifting of civil nuclear sanctions — is of less significance because high-priced imported commercial power reactors can play only a marginal role in meeting India’s energy needs.
It seems that the Swiss are bored of their centuries old neutrality( and pocketing loot from both sides in a conflict) and starring in the background of Bollywood duet songs. Now they want to have some real fun.
Swiss “accidentally” invade Liechtenstein
ZURICH, Switzerland – What began as a routine training exercise almost ended in an embarrassing diplomatic incident after a company of Swiss soldiers got lost at night and marched into neighboring Liechtenstein.
According to Swiss daily Blick, the 170 infantry soldiers wandered just over a mile across an unmarked border into the tiny principality early Thursday before realizing their mistake and turning back.
A spokesman for the Swiss army confirmed the story but said that there were unlikely to be any serious repercussions for the mistaken invasion.
“We’ve spoken to the authorities in Liechtenstein and it’s not a problem,” Daniel Reist told The Associated Press.
And the Liechtensteinians are being good dhimmis.
Officials in Liechtenstein also played down the incident.Interior ministry spokesman Markus Amman said nobody in Liechtenstein had even noticed the soldiers, who were carrying assault rifles but no ammunition. “It’s not like they stormed over here with attack helicopters or something,” he said.
Liechtenstein, which has about 34,000 inhabitants and is slightly smaller than Washington DC, doesn’t have an army.
Slate discusses the rewards a female Martyr can expect to find in Paradise.
A female suicide bomber detonated a vest filled with explosives at a university in Baghdad Sunday, killing more than 40 people. If male martyrs can expect to find 72 virgin maidens in paradise when they die, what rewards can female suicide bombers expect?
very few commentators enumerated the rewards for women. Ninth-century scholar Al-Tabarani did argue that women will be reunited with their husbands in the next world, and those who had multiple husbands can pick the best one to be their eternal spouse. (Other commentators added that a woman who never married can marry any man she wants in paradise.)
B Raman writes a open letter to Kasuri who called for intelligence co-operation between Indian and Pakistani agencies, recounting the history of the attempted Indo-Pak intelligence co-operation from the 1980s onwards calling it a dialogue of the deaf where the Pakistanis repeatedly stonewall and lie through their teeth even in the face of overwhelming evidence.He ends his letter by summarizing as follows.
You would now understand, I hope, why there is not much enthusiasm in India to the idea of a Joint Mechanism for Counter-Terrorism Co-operation. They say once bitten, twice shy. India has been bitten thrice — after the Shimla talks between Indira Gandhi and Z A Bhutto; after the meetings between Verma and Hamid Gul; and after the meeting between A B Vajpayee and Nawaz Sharif at Lahore in February 1999.
Mr Foreign Minister, Pakistan has handed over so many terrorism suspects to the US and other countries. Forget about terrorists. Can you recall even a single instance where Pakistan has handed over even a cattle-lifter to India? Whenever India has asked Pakistan to hand over a terrorist or other criminal, Pakistan’s response has been that India has not been able to produce convincing evidence against him. And whenever India has asked Pakistan to hand over a non-Muslim terrorist, Pakistan’s response has been: ‘Yes, we agree you have good evidence against him, but your information that he is in our territory is wrong.’ The handing-over of the Sikh army deserters is the only instance of such action by Pakistan that I can recall. I cannot understand even today why Gul did it. Was he planning to use them to collect military intelligence from India?
All Pakistan has to do to demonstrate its sincerity is to hand over some of the terrorists from India living in Pakistani territory before the first meeting of the Joint Counter-Terrorism Mechanism. It will have a big impact in India and many sceptics will start supporting the mechanism.
India would do well to heed this lesson of history and dump that nonsense called the joint anti-terrorism institutional mechanism. It too is doomed to suffer the same fate as above.
Why the hurry to forcibly take away all the injured still recuperating from their wounds? Is it because the Pakis were afraid that some canaries will sing? What is Pakistan hiding from the World?
NEW DELHI: Seven survivors of the Samjhauta Express tragedy were forced on Thursday to leave Safdarjung Hospital on short notice and taken away to a waiting Pakistan Air Force aircraft to be flown back home.
All of them were badly burned and a few of them pleaded that they be allowed to stay back for a few days more for their wounds to heal. Some said they had no one at home to look after them. But the doctors said they were helpless; these were orders from above.
It transpires that Pakistan was adamant to take back their citizens who had survived the blast, no matter what their medical condition. To make matters worse for them, they were rushed out of the sanitised burns unit in the afternoon, but until the time of writing their aircraft had not taken off, ostensibly due to ‘‘technical reasons’’. In other words, they are waiting in the plane without medical attention.
Some of them need it badly. For instance, 9-year-old Shamim was on ventilator when he was almost dragged out of Safdarjung’s ICU along with six others and put on a PAF special aircraft to be airlifted to Lahore. Some of the blast victims cried in vain to be allowed to stay back till they recuperated.
This is even more puzzling considering what Kasuri had said a day earlier in front of the Safdarjung Hospital. But his full account is somehow missing in all of the Media. This is what he said.
“I express my appreciation to the doctors who are attending on the (Pakistani) patients. They are taking really good care of them,”.” We Will be guided by the doctors advice on when we can take them back”.
Kasuri in Front of Safdarjung Hospital(Video Link)
But that last line has been quietly edited out by the media. It is nowhere to be found even though i myself saw it atleast 3 times on different news channels.
I think it is a wise idea to get a TV tuner card and record the videos ourselves so that we can catch the media lies, cover-ups and distortions red handed. Perhaps it is also a good idea to keep an eye on some online articles and see how they are being quietly edited over a period of time when they think that no one is looking and also compare them with the circulated hard copies of their newspapers and magazines.
That too in the very area where that accursed pipeline from Iran to India will have to pass through if built.
Quetta, Balochistan: Suspected Baloch militants blew up a gas pipeline near Quetta on Tuesday, cutting supplies to a power plant and several areas, a gas company official said. Gas supplies were cut to four districts near Quetta and a 95 MW city power plant. Supplies might be restored to some areas within 24 hours, Nawaz said. No one was hurt in the early morning blast in the outskirts of Quetta. “They planted explosives under an 18-inch pipeline that blew out a 4-foot piece of the pipe,” said Sheikh Nawaz, general manager of Sui Southern Gas Company.
If that pipeline is built not only will India have sleepless nights worrying about when the Paki goverment will pull the plug on this vital line. One has to also worry about when the Baloch militants will want to use it for some target practice.
Added to that India will have to pay several hundreds of millions of dollars as transit fees to Pakistan. That’s a lot of easy money for Pak to finance its terrorist campaigns against India.
The whole hair brained pipeline deal therefore is a lose-lose bargain all the way and should be scrapped right away, if it has not been already. A very viable alternative to this is to use the sea route since
1) India can then import all the gas it needs from every friggin part of the world including Iran and even Venezuela.
2) The Indian Navy can very much handle anyone who wants to play some mischief along the way.
Filed under Geopolitics, India, India and the World, Indian Foreign Policy, Indian Politics, Infrastructure Politics, International Politics, Liberal Extremists, National Security, Pakistan, The Indian Subcontinent
End of ALL Speculation. It is not the Martians, not the mythical Hindu terrorists and certainly not the flying spaghetti monster but
terrorist militant charity “freedom fighter” groups based in the territory of our own “loving neighbour” to the west having nearly 28 years of worldwide experience in doing these kind of things -butchering innocent civilians and then hiding behind a wall of lies and denials.
February 21, 2007- Security agencies probing the Samjhauta Express blasts on Tuesday night said the incident was the handiwork of Pakistan-based militant groups.
Highly-placed sources in Union Home Ministry said they had “vital clues,” which included a telephonic conversation between a caller from Delhi to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
The sources declined to give out the identity of the militant groups behind the blasts, but hinted at sleeper cells of Lashkar-e-Tayiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed.
These militant groups, the sources said, have adopted a new modus operandi of detonating low-intensity blasts with explosive materials comprising readily available combustibles.