Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Ten Day Alaska Cruise From San Francisco

My wife Yasmeen and I returned from a 10-day Alaska cruise over the weekend. We left from Pier 27 in San Francisco aboard the cruise ship named Grand Princess on Pakistan's Independence Day and came back on August 24, 2019. It was a fun-filled cruise with excellent food and entertainment with ports of call at Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway in Alaska as well as Victoria, British Columbia in Canada. It was smooth sailing except one night on our way to Victoria when the sea was really rough making some of the passengers really sick. Seeing massive glaciers up close and watching whales made for some the highlights of our trip.



Departure From San Francisco:

We were picked up from home on time at 12 noon on August 14 by a driver from East Bay Shuttle driving a Toyota Sienna minivan and arrived at San Francisco Pier 27 at about 1:15PM. The process of baggage handling and check-in was very efficient and we soon found our way to our cabin where our baggage was already sitting at the door. We put the baggage inside our room and left for the lunch buffet that was all set for the hungry passengers on Deck 14. The ship sailed from the port exactly at 4 PM as scheduled.

First Formal Night at Sea:

The ship sailed for two days and nights toward our first port of call at Ketchikan in Alaska. The second night was a Formal Night when all on board dressed up for pictures. Most of the passengers chose fine dining with sit-down dinner available at multiple restaurants on the ship.



Yasmeen and I had lots of pictures taken at several spots chosen by professional photographers. We then sat down for dinner at Michelangelo restaurant on Deck 5. Yasmeen had shrimp cocktail and I ordered Caesar's salad to start. Yasmeen had steak and I ate almond crusted salmon for the main entree. We topped it off with Creme Brulee for Yasmeen and a slice of fruit tart cake and a cup of cappuccino for me.




After dinner, we both went to the Princess Theater to see the "British Invasion" show. It was mostly about the Beatles but also featured Elvis Presley “ the King” and The Rolling Stones. The cast ably performed with songs and dances that got the audience up on their feet singing along the favorites like Help Me, Lucy in the Sky” and I Don’t Get No Satisfaction”. It was loads of fun!

Stop at Ketchikan:

We arrived in Alaskan town of Ketchikan on the morning of Saturday, August 17, 2019. Our disembarkation photo op with a man holding an axe said it all: The population of Ketchikan traditionally relied on cutting down trees for their livelihood. It sits on the edge of Tongas National Forest, America's largest national forest covering 16.7 million acres. Logging was banned in large parts of it in 1990. Since that ban, tourism has emerged as the largest industry in Ketchikan and similar other towns in Alaska. The second largest industry here is salmon fishing.



We took "Duck Tour" in an amphibious vehicle which took us on a tour of both the land and the sea. On this tour, we saw several fresh water streams where salmon come from the sea to spawn.



The original native people who have been living here since well before the Europeans arrived are called the Tlingit people. They first suffered at the hands of Russians from 1733 to 1867 when Alaska was purchased by the United States. Then came the Gold Rush that brought a huge influx of Americans who brought many infectious diseases that almost wiped out the native population.

Back on the ship, we watched Bohemian Rhapsody. It’s a biopic about British singer Freddie Mercury who was born Farrokh Bulsara in Zanzibar to Parsee Indian parents. The word Bismillah is in the lyrics he wrote for the Bohemian Rhapsody song. He was the lead singer of the band Queen that produced some of the most popular hits in 1980s like We Will Rock You, We Are the Champions and Another One Bites the Dust. Freddie is played by Egyptian born actor Rami Malek who won the Best Actor Oscar for his role. It’s worth watching.

Port Call at Juneau:

Our ship docked at Juneau, the capital of Alaska and the second largest city in the state, on Sunday August 18, 2019. We saw three other large cruise ships already in port, indicating Juneau is a popular tourist destination.

We took Mount Roberts Tramway, an aerial tramway located just south of downtown Juneau. The tram hanging from cables made a 6-minute ascent of 3,819-foot Mount Roberts from the cruise ship docks to a height of about 1,800 feet.

L to R: Libby Riddles, Riaz Haq, Yasmeen Haq


In the evening, Yasmeen and I met with Libby Riddles, the first woman to win the Iditarod dog sled race . She was invited on board to talk about her experience of one of the world's toughest races in the  frozen Alaskan Tundra.




Alaska Skagway Stop:

Skagway is the northernmost point that our ship sailed to on this cruise on Monday August 19, 2019. This town was the biggest attraction during Klondike Gold Rush years. We took a bus tour that took us to the historic White Pass and Yukon route.



We passed through Canadian territory on this tour. It's a very scenic road with glaciers visible on mountain tops, several beautiful streams and waterfalls and trees growing on high mountains.

Some of our fellow tourists took the steam engine train that runs the route where railroad tracks were first laid during the Klondike Gold Rush.

Tracy Arm Fjord:

We sailed through TracyArm Fjord, named after Civil War General Benjamin Franklin Tracy, toward a huge glacier on water's edge. Along the way, we saw several small and large icebergs floating on the water. Tracy Arm is a narrow, 27-mile long inlet 50 miles south of Juneau. The Fjord at its narrowest is no more than half mile wide—and cliffs rise over 3,000 feet on either side, with waterfalls covering them.



The ship made a tight S-turn and stopped as we got really close to the face of twin glaciers, known as Sawyer Glaciers, to allow us to a take a close look. Photographers hovered around us to take lots of pictures with the majestic glacier in the background.

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada:

Our last stop on August 22 was in the city of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada. It's a charming town that reminds of London, England. Some of the oldest buildings, including the provincial legislature, were designed by British architect Francis Rattenbury (1867-1935). Victoria's Chinatown is the second oldest in North America after San Francisco's. Victoria is sometimes described as the city of gardens. Its Butchart Garden is world famous for its floral display gardens.



We took a bus tour of the city that took us to Oak Bay, home of some of the most expensive real estate in western Canada. Along the way, our tour guide talked about the architecture of various buildings and spent considerable time telling us tales of architect Francis Rattenbury's scandals.

Second Formal Night:

We had our cruise's second formal night on August 22, 2019. We put on formal clothing, had pictures taken and sat down for dinner at a restaurant. Yasmeen started with Caesar's salad and I had escargot. Our main course was chicken for Yasmeen and salmon for me. Yasmeen chose fresh fruit and I had chocolate cake.



After dinner, we saw “Born to Dance”, a show produced by Oscar, Tony and Grammy award winning composer Stephen Schwartz. It featured dances choreographed by Bob Fosse and other great choreographers of Broadway musicals like Oklahoma, Carousel, West Side Story, Chicago, Cats, Hairspray, Mamma Mia and Hello Dolly






Indians On Board:

There was a group of 60 Indian-Americans among 2700 fellow passengers on board. Yasmeen and I know some of them from the San Francisco Bay Area. Princess cruises responded to their significant presence by offering daal, chawal, vegetarian dishes and spicy papad on the menu.

On August 15, the Indians had Independence Day Celebrations on the ship with flag raising and karaoke.

There were also many Indians among Grand Princess's multi-national crew.  Large numbers of Russians, Ukrainians, Hungarians, Latin Americans and Filipinos were some of the more significant nationalities among the crew. The ship's captain was from Italy where Grand Princess was built in 1998 at a cost of $450 million.

 Back in San Francisco:

We had smooth sailing as we headed back. Early Saturday morning of August 24 as we woke up, we saw Golden Gate's red and green lights through the fog. We were home again. San Francisco skyline with TransAmerica building and the SalesForce Tower were soon visible as we pulled in to Pier 27 of San Francisco Port where we had left exactly 10 days earlier.

Summary:

Alaska's fresh clean air, natural beauty and cool temperatures were great for our summer vacation. With the exception of one rough right as we sailed to Victoria, it was smooth sailing for the rest of the cruise. It was worth every penny we spent on it.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Alaska Permanent Fund

Israel in Alaska

Pakistan Travel and Tourism Boom

Extreme Kayak Adventures in Pakistan

Helicopter Skiing in Karakorams

Climbing K2: The Ultimate Challenge

Indian Visitors Share "Eye-Opening" Stories of Pakistan

American Tourist Picks Pakistan Among Top 10 Best Countries to Visit

Pakistani American to Pakistani Diaspora: Go Back and Visit Pakistan

Riaz Haq's YouTube Channel

PakAlumni Social Network

Monday, August 12, 2019

Indian Occupied Kashmir Under Total Extended Lockdown On Eid ul Azha

Indian military has kept Occupied Kashmir under extended and inhumane lockdown on the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha to prevent protests against New Delhi's reckless decision to scrap Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. The lockdown is being enforced by over 700,000 Indian troops deployed in Jammu and Kashmir.  People are imprisoned in their homes for several days in a row. There is no Internet, telephone or television.  Delhi rules the region under Armed Forces Special Powers Act, the same law that was created and used by the British colonial power to try and crush Gandhi's Quit India movement. Thousands have died and more than 6,221 people received pellet gun injuries in the seven months following the July 2016 killing of Burhan Wani, according to the Jammu and Kashmir government as reported by The New Humanitarian.  Mr. Modi's actions are not only an affront to the people of Jammu and Kashmir but also in clear violation of India's international and bilateral obligations under United Nations charter and the Simla Accord.   It is time for all sane Indians and the rest of the world to wake up to the serious threats posed to peace in South Asia region and the wider world by Mr. Modi's fascist Hindutva project.

Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir:

Regardless of Article 370, the region of of Jammu and Kashmir remains a disputed territory whose status must be resolved according to the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 47 (1948) and 80 (1950). India can not unilaterally alter its status without agreement with Pakistan and the people of Jammu and Kashmir who are are parties to it.  Any unilateral action by either India or Pakistan on Kashmir also violates the Simla Agreement which requires bilateral resolution of the disputed region.

Mr. Modi's actions are not only an affront to the people of Jammu and Kashmir but also in clear violation of India's international and bilateral obligations under United Nations charter and the Simla Accord.

China, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, lays claim to Ladakh region. It has objected to India making it a union territory.

India is deploying 700,000 troops with extraordinary powers to detain, torture, blind, injure and kill any Kashmiri citizen with impunity under Armed Forces (Jammu and Kashmir) Special Powers Act 1990. It is the most heavily militarized region in the world.

India rules Kashmir using Armed Forces Special Powers Act, the same law that was created and used by the British colonial power to try and crush Gandhi's Quit India movement.

After independence in 1947, the Indian government has made extensive use of the same colonial-era British law to crush legitimate demands for freedom by the peoples of Assam, Manipur, Kashmir and other regions. The Act has now been in force in Kashmir for 26 years.

Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's Pledge

Deaths and Injuries:


In the latest Kashmir uprising triggered by the July 8 2016 murder of young Kashmiri activist Burhan Wani by Indian military,  hundreds of protesters have been killed and thousands more injured in peaceful protests.

The extensive use pellet guns by Indian soldiers has blinded thousands of young men and women, even children, during the current wave of mass protests. More than 6,221 people received pellet gun injuries in the seven months following the July 2016 unrest, according to the Jammu and Kashmir government as reported by The New Humanitarian.

Prior to casualties this latest round of protests since Mr. Modi rose to power in New Delhi, there have tens of thousands of civilians killed and hundreds of thousands injured by Indian military in Kashmir. Thousands of bodies have been found in mass graves in Bandipora, Baramulla, and Kupwara districts in Kashmir, according to The Hindu.

Kashmir Mass Graves:

Dr. Angana Chatterji, a professor of cultural and social anthropology at California Centre for Integral Studies who uncovered the mass graves, reported as follows:  “Of the 2700 graves, 2,373 (87.9 percent) were unnamed. 154 graves contained two bodies each and 23 contained more than two cadavers. Within these 23 graves, the number of bodies ranged from 3 to 17."

Scholars, she said, refer to mass graves as resulting from Crimes Against Humanity, War Crimes, or Genocide. “If the intent of a mass grave is to execute death with impunity, with intent to kill more than one, and to forge an unremitting representation of death, then, to that extent, the graves in Bandipora, Baramulla, and Kupwara are part of a collective burial by India’s military and paramilitary, creating a landscape of ‘mass burial.’

Dr. Chatterji said post-death, the bodies of the victims were routinely handled by military and paramilitary personnel, including the local police. She said that the bodies were then brought to “secret graveyards” primarily by personnel of the State Police.

The International Peoples' Tribunal on Human Rights and Justice, an independent group headed by Dr. Chatterji, alleged that the violence and militarization in Kashmir, between 1989-2009, have resulted in over 70,000 deaths, including through extrajudicial or “fake encounter” executions, custodial brutality, and other means. “In the enduring conflict, 6, 67,000 military and paramilitary personnel continue to act with impunity to regulate movement, law, and order across Kashmir,” she added.

Indian University Student Protest:

Many enlightened Indians like the Jawaharlal Nehru University students see the brutality and futility of Indian military occupation of Kashmir. At protests earlier this year, many chanted slogans in favor of Azadi for Kashmiris.  "Geelani bole azaadi, Afzal bole azaadi, jo tum na doge azaadi, toh chheen ke lenge azadi! (Geelani and Afzal demanded freedom. If freedom is denied, we will snatch it!)".

New Generation in Revolt: 

During the 26 years of Kashmir under Armed Forces Special Powers Act, an entire new generation of Kashmiris has grown up. This generation, represented by tech-savvy youngsters like Burhan Wani, has seen nothing but repression and violence committed by the Indian military against their people. They are more determined than ever to defy and defeat the illegal and immoral military occupation of their land by India.

Domestic Opposition in India:

Mr. Karan Singh, a member of Indian Rajya Sabha (upper house) and the son of Kashmiri Maharaja Hari Singh who "acceded" Jammu and Kashmir to India in 1947, has said that Kashmir is "not an internal matter" of India. Mr. Singh has insisted on restoration of the dialogue process with Pakistan.

“J&K’s relationship with the rest of India is guided by Article 370 and the State Constitution that I signed into law. We must realize that from the very beginning, J&K, rightly or wrongly, has been given a special position. Now [after] that special position from the original three subjects, there have been a whole series of developments — some may call them positive developments of integration, others may say negative developments of reducing autonomy,” Mr. Singh was quoted as saying by The Hindu.

Strongest reactions to Mr. Modi's decision to annul article 370 have come from top leaders in Indian Punjab and Tamil Nadu. It has inspired fear that the central government in Delhi could take control of any state, strip it of its statehood and impose direct rule without the consent of its people.

Former union minister P. Chidambaram called Modi's action a "cardinal blunder" and a "fatal legal error"."What you are doing today sends a very wrong signal to every state of country", he added.

Tamil Nadu's DMK party leader MK Stalin took to Twitter to condemn Modi's decision. “This is a dark day in the history of Indian federalism. I urge the President of India to not precipitate the situation and not take any further steps in this regard until a democratically elected Government is formed there. The DMK stands with its Kashmiri brothers and sisters and will oppose any assault on federal structure,” he said in a series of tweets.

Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh of Indian Punjab has denounced the revocation of 370 as “totally unconstitutional”. He tweeted that “the Constitution of India had been rewritten without following any legal provisions. Such a historic decision should not have been taken and pushed through in this arbitrary manner...This will set a bad precedent as it would mean that the Centre could reorganize any state in the country by simply imposing President’s rule.”

Summary:

Indian Hindu Nationalist government of Prime Minister Modi's abrogation of Article 370 is in clear violation of the Indian constitution and international rules governing resolution of disputes between countries.  Indian military has kept Occupied Kashmir under extended and inhumane lockdown on the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha to prevent protests against New Delhi's reckless decision to scrap Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. The lockdown is being enforced by over 700,000 Indian troops deployed in Jammu and Kashmir.  Thousands have died and more than 6,221 people received pellet gun injuries in the seven months following the July 2016 killing of Burhan Wani, according to the Jammu and Kashmir government as reported by The New Humanitarian  It has wider implications for India's federal, secular and democratic constitutional structure. It has sent alarm bells ringing in Indian states of Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Nagaland and Mizoram. It also threatens to escalate tensions between nuclear armed rivals India and Pakistan when the Kashmiri resistance turns violent and Modi falsely blames it on "cross-border terrorism". Nuclear confrontation in South Asia could result in deaths of billions of people across Asia, Africa, Europe and America. It is time for all sane Indians and the rest of the world to wake up to the serious threats posed to peace in South Asia region and the wider world by Mr. Modi's fascist Hindutva project.

Here's Human rights activist Ajit Sahi exposing Modi's atrocities in Kashmir at Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. Sahi says 6 people a day being killed in extrajudicial killings.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBjfOERnLz0

&

Here's another video discussion:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_VAqyClS-0





https://vimeo.com/182288648

Did India beat Pakistan in the 1965 war from Ikolachi on Vimeo.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Kashmiris Observe Black Day

India: A Paper Elephant?

India-Pakistan Nuclear Arms Race

Kashmir: 700,000 Indian Soldiers vs 7 Million Kashmiris

Funding of Hate Groups, NGOs, Think Tanks: Is Money Free Speech?

US and China Vying For Influence in Pakistan

Pakistan-China-Russia Vs India-Japan-US

Pakistan Rising or Failing: Reality vs Perception

Pakistan's Trillion Dollar Economy Among top 25

MQM-RAW Link

Riaz Haq Youtube Channel

VPOS Youtube Channel



Sunday, August 11, 2019

Pakistan's Digital Gig Economy Growth Among World's Fastest

Pakistan's digital gig economy growth is the fastest in Asia and fourth fastest in the world, according to digital payments platform Payoneer.

Gig Economy Growth in Q2/2019. Source: Payoneer
United States led gig economy growth of 78% followed by the United Kingdom 59%, Brazil 48%, Pakistan 47% and Ukraine 36%. Asia growth was led by Pakistan followed by Philippines (35%) , India  (29%) and Bangladesh (27%).

The rapid gig economy expansion of 47% in Pakistan  was fueled by several factors including the country's very young population 70% of which is under 30 years of age coupled with improvements in science and technical education and expansion of high-speed broadband access.  Pakistani freelancers under the age of 35 generated 77% of the revenue in second quarter of 2019.

Mohsin Muzaffar, head of business development at Payoneer in Pakistan, has said as follows: "Government investment in enhancing digital skills has helped create a skilled freelancer workforce while blanket 4G coverage across Pakistan has given freelancers unprecedented access to
international jobs".

Global Freelance Revenue By Age. Source: Payoneer. 


In Q2/2019, Asia cemented its status as a freelancer hub.  Pakistan, Bangladesh and India, Philippines made it to the  top 10 list, collectively recording 238% increase from Q2/2018.


Online Labor Index. Source: Oxford Internet Institute

As of 2017, Pakistan freelancers ranked fourth in the world and accounted for 8.5% of the global online workforce, according to Online Labor Index compiled by Oxford Internet Institute. India led with 24% share followed by Bangladesh 16%, US 12%, Pakistan 8.5% and Philippines 6.5%.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Digital BRI and 5G in Pakistan

Pakistan's Demographic Dividend

Pakistan EdTech and FinTech Startups

State Bank Targets Fully Digital Economy in Pakistan

Campaign of Fear Against CPEC

Fintech Revolution in Pakistan

E-Commerce in Pakistan

The Other 99% of the Pakistan Story

FMCG Boom in Pakistan

Belt Road Forum 2019

Fiber Network Growth in Pakistan

Riaz Haq's Youtube Channel


Saturday, August 10, 2019

Modi's Kashmir Blunder: Wider Implications For India, Pakistan and the World

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's reckless decision to unilaterally abrogate Article 370 of the Indian constitution has sent shockwaves across South Asia and the rest of the world. The immediate effect of this action is on Indian Occupied Kashmir which has lost its status as a state and stands divided into union territories directly ruled from New Delhi. It has wider implications for India's federal, secular and democratic constitutional structure. It has sent alarm bells ringing in Indian states of Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Nagaland and Mizoram. It also threatens to escalate tensions between nuclear armed rivals India and Pakistan when the Kashmiri resistance turns violent and Modi falsely blames it on "cross-border terrorism". Nuclear confrontation in South Asia could result in deaths of billions of people across Asia, Africa, Europe and America. It is time for all sane Indians and the rest of the world to wake up to the serious threats posed to peace in South Asia region and the wider world by Mr. Modi's fascist Hindutva project.

Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir:

Regardless of Article 370, the region of of Jammu and Kashmir remains a disputed territory whose status must be resolved according to the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 47 (1948) and 80 (1950). India can not unilaterally alter its status without agreement with Pakistan and the people of Jammu and Kashmir who are are parties to it.  Any unilateral action by either India or Pakistan on Kashmir also violates the Simla Agreement which requires bilateral resolution of the disputed region.

Mr. Modi's actions are not only an affront to the people of Jammu and Kashmir but also in clear violation of India's international and bilateral obligations under United Nations charter and the Simla Accord.

China, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, lays claim to Ladakh region. It has objected to India making it a union territory.

Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's Pledge

Domestic Opposition in India:

Mr. Karan Singh, a member of Indian Rajya Sabha (upper house) and the son of Kashmiri Maharaja Hari Singh who "acceded" Jammu and Kashmir to India in 1947, has said that Kashmir is "not an internal matter" of India. Mr. Singh has insisted on restoration of the dialogue process with Pakistan.

“J&K’s relationship with the rest of India is guided by Article 370 and the State Constitution that I signed into law. We must realize that from the very beginning, J&K, rightly or wrongly, has been given a special position. Now [after] that special position from the original three subjects, there have been a whole series of developments — some may call them positive developments of integration, others may say negative developments of reducing autonomy,” Mr. Singh was quoted as saying by The Hindu.

Strongest reactions to Mr. Modi's decision to annul article 370 have come from top leaders in Indian Punjab and Tamil Nadu. It has inspired fear that the central government in Delhi could take control of any state, strip it of its statehood and impose direct rule without the consent of its people.

Former union minister P. Chidambaram called Modi's action a "cardinal blunder" and a "fatal legal error"."What you are doing today sends a very wrong signal to every state of country", he added.

Tamil Nadu's DMK party leader MK Stalin took to Twitter to condemn Modi's decision. “This is a dark day in the history of Indian federalism. I urge the President of India to not precipitate the situation and not take any further steps in this regard until a democratically elected Government is formed there. The DMK stands with its Kashmiri brothers and sisters and will oppose any assault on federal structure,” he said in a series of tweets.

Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh of Indian Punjab has denounced the revocation of 370 as “totally unconstitutional”. He tweeted that “the Constitution of India had been rewritten without following any legal provisions. Such a historic decision should not have been taken and pushed through in this arbitrary manner...This will set a bad precedent as it would mean that the Centre could reorganize any state in the country by simply imposing President’s rule.”

India-Pakistan Escalation:

Most of Kashmir has been under an unprecedented and extended lock-down. People are imprisoned in their homes for several days in a row. There is no Internet, telephone or television.

Eventually when the restrictions are eased, there will be large street protests which the Indian security forces will try to quell by force. When such protests turn violent,  Mr. Modi will cry "terrorism" and falsely accuse Pakistan of being behind it. There will be a familiar replay of the events of the past with Mr. Modi escalating conflict with Pakistan across the Line of Control in Kashmir.

Such escalations pose the danger of spiraling out of control and leading to a nuclear confrontation.

The West, particularly the United States and Canada, are geographically far removed from South Asia. This distance makes many think that any nuclear exchange between India and Pakistan would not have a significant impact on life in America and Europe. Dr. Owen Brian Toon and Professor Alan Robock dispute this thinking. They believe the nuclear winter following an India-Pakistan nuclear exchange will kill crops as far as the United States and cause a global famine. Another study by Nobel Peace Prize- winning International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War and Physicians for Social Responsibility reached the same conclusion.

Professors Robock and Toon have calculated that the smoke from just 100-200 Hiroshima sized atomic bombs exploding in South Asia would cover the entire globe within two weeks. This smoke would hang 30-50 miles above the surface of the earth where it never rains. This thick layer of smoke would block the sun causing farmers to lose their crops for years to come. The resulting famine would kill billions of people around the globe.

It seems that the American leadership recognizes the devastating global impact of possible India-Pakistan nuclear war.  In "Brokering Peace in Nuclear Environments U.S. Crisis Management in South Asia", Pakistani-American analyst Dr. Moeed Yusuf talks about the US efforts to prevent India-Pakistan war that could escalate into a full-scale nuclear exchange. He analyzes American diplomacy in three critical periods: Kargil conflict in 1999; the stand-off after the Indian Parliament attack in 2001 and the terrorist attack in Mumbai in 2008.

Yusuf argues that the US-Soviet Cold War deterrence model does not apply to the India-Pakistan conflict and offers his theory of "brokered bargaining". In chapters that detail the US role during three India-Pakistan crises, it is clear that the US rejected India's insistence on bilateralism in resolving India-Pakistan disputes.  The author says that "in each episode, the concern about the escalation forced the United States to engage, largely unsolicited, and use a mix of rewards (or promises of) and punishments (or threats of) with the regional rivals to achieve de-escalation--ahead of its broader regional or policy interests."

Summary:

Indian Hindu Nationalist government of Prime Minister Modi's abrogation of Article 370 is in clear violation of the Indian constitution and international rules governing resolution of disputes between countries. It has wider implications for India's federal, secular and democratic constitutional structure. It has sent alarm bells ringing in Indian states of Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Nagaland and Mizoram. It also threatens to escalate tensions between nuclear armed rivals India and Pakistan when the Kashmiri resistance turns violent and Modi falsely blames it on "cross-border terrorism". Nuclear confrontation in South Asia could result in deaths of billions of people across Asia, Africa, Europe and America. It is time for all sane Indians and the rest of the world to wake up to the serious threats posed to peace in South Asia region and the wider world by Mr. Modi's fascist Hindutva project.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Kashmiris Observe Black Day

India: A Paper Elephant?

India-Pakistan Nuclear Arms Race

Kashmir: 700,000 Indian Soldiers vs 7 Million Kashmiris

Funding of Hate Groups, NGOs, Think Tanks: Is Money Free Speech?

US and China Vying For Influence in Pakistan

Pakistan-China-Russia Vs India-Japan-US

Pakistan Rising or Failing: Reality vs Perception

Pakistan's Trillion Dollar Economy Among top 25

MQM-RAW Link

Riaz Haq Youtube Channel

VPOS Youtube Channel