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Holding CHOGM is shameful for former colonial nations
No matter how eloquently a justification for the existence of an organization like CHOGM is presented, its vagueness and futility cannot be underestimated. No one has a clear idea, except Britain, why such a grouping exists well after the sun is set and what exactly it promotes. So far, CHOGM’s achievements are confined to promoting British interests, sometimes it turns out to be a profit-making venture as well. It has no connection with promoting democracy, freedom of expression, development and universal values, except selective rhetoric from time to time.
 
Sharif-Manmohan meet: Need for a roadmap
After much speculation, the stage has been set for Indian Prime Minister to meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif. Indeed, keeping communication channels open is the only way to negotiate their crisis-ridden issues. It is very important that the talks have a roadmap without which, they may be futile. The key is to take small steps towards resolution of disputes, starting from less sensitive issues like trade and water-sharing mechanisms and gradually proceeding to more serious issues like LoC violations, terrorism and Kashmir. Good diplomacy means meaningful engagement while detachment could make matters worse.
 
Myanmar needs to do more hard work
Myanmar's apparent recovery from military rule to a flourishing democracy was accelerated by President Thein Sein when he declared that all political prisoners would be released by the end of 2013 and that a ceasefire with ethnic groups could be possible within weeks. Indeed, Myanmar has too much to lose if the domestic instability threatens its transitional efforts as it has taken the world a long time to trust its slow pace of reforms. Indeed, time has come to convert good will Myanmar has earned with hard work into a lasting peace for its people.


 
Impact of US intervention in Syria
While the US Congress waits it out to vote on the possibility of attacking Syria, the mere thought of such an action has sent shockwaves through the global politics and economy which has soared oil prices. In addition, the conflict between Shia and Sunni Muslims could tear the Middle-East apart and may get more violent as the civil war in Syria persists. Even if the US militarily intervenes in Syria, it can only make the matter worse as no one can predict how it will unfold once the hostility breaks out. It seems Israel can be an unintended victim.
 
Egypt will burn for some more time

Egypt is burning. But the situation will not change for better dramatically in coming days. The country is passing through its most difficult time. Indeed, Morsi failed and the Army intervened. But the Egyptian society will get further divided and this will lead to violence. An unstable Egypt is bad for the whole region. Egypt is the only country in the region that enjoys considerable influence in both Asia and Africa.

 
Indo-Pak ties: Optimism with caution

India is optimistic about the future of its relationship with Pakistan as 14 years ago it was under Nawaz Sharif’s rule both Pakistan and India had initiated the process of normalizing ties. This expectation is not entirely idealistic, but the government should approach Pakistan cautiously as Sharif’s ability to strengthen ties with India will depend on his relationship with the military, which still makes decisions for Pakistan’s foreign policy

 

 
Future of NATO: Can it stretch beyond Europe
Article number 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty states that an armed attack against one or more parties of NATO will be considered an attack against them all and in response it can exercise military powers to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.
 
Crisis in Mali: Implement and quickly exit
Mali has slipped into a total chaos after a coup toppled the democratic government in 2012 and was followed by the MNLA and the Islamic fundamentalist gaining control. French-led Mail troops have been trying to suppress the Tuareg-led rebellion which is now being dominated by Islamic fundamentalism. To counter it, an African-led force is also coming in to tackle the situation.
 
LoC tension: Failure of military leadership
The recent flare-up in tensions between India and Pakistan, following the killing of two soldiers, including the beheading of one, which was preceded by low-grade exchange of gunfire leading to ceasefire violations from both the sides, can be attributed to the failure of military leadership  of both sides in engaging in purposeful talks to solve the local-level tensions.
 
Escalation or calculated risk
Recently Japan flew fighter jets over the disputed Senkaku islands (as they are named by Japan) in the East China Sea, leading to raised concerns in China, which remains ‘highly vigilant’ of further Japanese move. Both the countries have been involved in such confrontations and flying fighter planes over the disputed territory as means of escalation of tensions, which makes the whole issue potentially explosive.