Politics

The New World Disorder

By Tariq Ali, April 9, 2015

Three decades ago, with the end of the Cold War and the dismantling of the South American dictatorships, many hoped that the much talked about ‘peace dividend’ promised by Bush senior and Thatcher would actually materialise. No such luck. Instead, we have experienced continuous wars, upheavals, intolerance and fundamentalisms of every sort – religious, ethnic and imperial. The exposure of the Western world’s surveillance networks has heightened the feeling that democratic institutions aren’t functioning as they should, that, like it or not, we are living in the twilight period of democracy itself.
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In Its Own Interest

Strategic autonomy as an Indian foreign policy option

By Kanwal Sibal, The Telegraph, May 4, 2015

In the joint statement issued during the Indian prime minister's visit to France in April, the two sides reaffirmed "their independence and strategic autonomy" in joint efforts to tackle global challenges. In the French case, as a member of Nato, it is not so clear what strategic autonomy might mean, but in our case it would essentially mean independence in making strategic foreign policy decisions, and, consequently, rejecting any alliance relationship. It would imply the freedom to choose partnerships as suits our national interest and be able to forge productive relationships with countries that may be strategic adversaries among themselves.
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The Double Death of Europe

By Adrian Pabst, Eurocrisis in the Press, May 7, 2015

Introduction: the broken promise of peace and prosperity

The continual crisis in the Eurozone and in Ukraine poses the most serious danger to Europe since the darkest days of the Cold War. Economic devastation in the south and war in the east cast a long shadow over the European Union and the wider Europe. Arguably the post-1945 promise of peace and prosperity no longer holds. The 28 EU member-states are home to high standards of living for many and the biggest single market with over 550 million consumers, but the 2008 crash exposed the sheer precariousness of the much-vaunted European social models and ways of life. Without a radically different settlement, the Union faces the paradox of a richer economy with poorer people. Amid rising inequality and persistently high youth unemployment, there is a very real prospect that this generation of 18-25 year olds and their children’s generation will be worse off than their parents’ generation.
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The Year 2015: First Third Report

By Johan Galtung, TRANSCEND Media Service, May 11, 2015

The 19 January editorial “The Year 2015-What Are We in For?” identified four unfolding, dramatic processes: the West will continue fighting unsuccessfully and violently to keep their world grip; Eurasia will expand and consolidate successfully and nonviolently; Islam will expand and consolidate partly violently; Latin America and Africa will expand and consolidate, spearheaded by Brazil, South Africa, BRICS.

A third of the year 2015 has now passed; let us take stock.
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May 9th: Russian Victory, NATO Defeat

By Christopher Black, New Eastern Outlook, May 7, 2015

On February 2nd, 1943, the 6th German Army, under the command of Field Marshall Von Paulus, and elements of the 4th Panzer Army, surrendered to the Red Army at Stalingrad. This stunning victory is considered the turning point in the war in Europe, heralding the defeat of fascist Germany.

That defeat came on May 2nd, 1945, when the German forces in Berlin, the capital of the Third Reich, surrendered to the forces of the Red Army that had captured the city. On May 9th the official act of surrender of the German government and military forces took place in Berlin when the Germans surrendered to the Soviet commander, Marshal Zhukov, a surrender witnessed by representatives of the American, British and French forces. This was the end of the war in Europe.
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Living Ghosts of WW II

Moscow and Beijing are coming together to invoke 1945 to strengthen their moral position for a stable world order.

Zorawar Daulet Singh, Outlook, May 7, 2015

On 9 May, Russia's president, Vladimir Putin, flanked by his prized guest, Xi Jinping will preside over the 70th anniversary parade to commemorate the victory over Nazi Germany in 1945. No western leader will attend this event. States often use history and symbolism to preserve their collective memories, and, sustain their values and identities. But representations of 1945 have become deeply contested and exemplify the struggle in world politics today.
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Mediterranean Catastrophes: Time that the People of Europe Stood Up

By Chandra Muzaffar, President of the International Movement for a Just World (JUST)

About a fortnight ago — just before midnight on the 18th of April 2015 — the Mediterranean witnessed one of the greatest catastrophes that has ever occurred on its waters. More than 800 migrants in a small fishing boat were drowned off the coast of Libya as a result of a collision with another vessel.

This was the latest in a series of tragedies of this sort. Just before the 18th April episode, there were two other shipwrecks that left 450 people dead. In September 2014, 500 migrants drowned when the traffickers navigating their boat rammed it in an attempt to force the passengers on board to get into another smaller vessel. In October 2013, 360 Africans perished when their tiny boat caught fire within sight of the Italian coast.

There is clear evidence now to show that migrants packed into untrustworthy boats dying in various disasters on the Mediterranean is increasing at an alarming rate. This year, up to the end of April, at least 1750 of them were killed crossing the Mediterranean. This is 30 times more than for the same period in 2014!
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Jokowi Calls for Reform of UN at Asian-African Conference

By Jakarta Globe and Reuters, April 22, 2015

Jakarta. President Joko Widodo has criticized the United Nations and the world’s financial institutions for leading an imbalance of economic and political power.

Joko’s speech in Jakarta opened a meeting of Asian and African nations to mark the 60th anniversary of a conference that was seen as a united stand by the developing world against colonialism and led to the Cold War era’s non-aligned movement.

The Indonesian president said that 60 years on, many countries in the two continents have gotten rid of their colonial masters and become independent nations.

“However our fight is far from over. A new world order based on justice, equality and prosperity is still out of reach,” the president said, referring to the aims of the inaugural 1955 Bali Conference.
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Statement by H.E. Mr. G. Khoshroo, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran before the UN Security Council on the Role of the Youth in Combating Violent Extremism

23 April 2015

In the Name of God, the Compassionate the Merciful

Mr. President,

I would like to begin by thanking you for convening this meeting on this very critical issue facing the world and our youth.

Today, the young people are in a paradoxical situation in relation to Islam and the West. This critical situation is rooted in two realities that are seemingly contradictory but inherently complementary. On the one hand, we witness the expansion of extremism and terrorism which could be observed as much in some western capitals as in villages in some Islamic countries. On the other hand, Islamophobia is spreading across the West and implanting hatred and fear in the fabric of the Western society.

Where are the youth in the midst of this conflicting and contradictory situation? Have they given rise to this situation or are they simply its victims. Who are those who have created this situation and what interest is it to serve? What is the role of the young people in this equation?
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