Crime & Justice

Up the Creek

On July 19, newspapers reported that a married man who was having an affair was killed in an ‘honour killing’ allegedly by the relatives of the woman he was involved with. One report described the murder thus: “A man died on Monday after five attackers chopped off his arms, lips and nose, taking away his severed limbs with them.”

Countering Terrorism in Bangladesh

Politicians and law-enforcers in Bangladesh, from time to time, hype up both panic and complacency by publicizing the following: “terrorists everywhere” or “no terrorists anywhere”, in the country. The ambivalence is counterproductive to counterterrorism (CT) operation. The first and foremost requirement for effective CT is understanding of terrorism per se, that terrorists are not mindless robots programmed to kill innocent people just for the sake of killing. Terrorism is ideology-driven violence, different from violent crime and warfare. Most terrorists, globally, have been well-to-do engineers and technocrats, not poverty-stricken madrassa-educated people.

Honour & Deviance

You either stay in your sanitised comfort zone, or you step out and get inured to contempt for women. Some events, though, still leave an imprint.

The Challenge Before Us

The Indian subcontinent was partitioned in 1947 on the basis of religion. Bangladesh was born 31 years later, in 1971, on the basis of nationalism, democracy and secularism. Democracy we lost first, in the mid-seventies and then in the early eighties, and are yet to recover it fully. Secularism, which was on a gradual decline, now faces its most severe threat.

Terrorist Madness

As I sat down to write this yesterday morning, there was breaking news of a mass killing at a residential facility for the disabled not far from Tokyo. The perpetrator was apparently a 26-year-old former employee of the care home who subsequently handed himself over to the police after murdering 19 people and injuring dozens of others.

Falling Short-Police Apathy to Rape in India

India, a country best-known for its rising economic might, is the worst place to be a woman.On Sunday, 25 July 2016, an Israeli woman was gang raped in Manali, India.

Social Media a Curse and a Blessing in Munich Shooting

Social networks were both a curse and a blessing in the deadly shopping mall shooting in Munich, as police sometimes found themselves chasing fictitious leads and false alarms.

Modern-day Slavery in Oman? Domestic Workers in Peril

In order to escape poverty and support their families back home, thousands of domestic workers from South and South-East Asia migrate to Oman with the promise of stable employment in local households.

Enemy Images

Members of Congress have embarrassed themselves, this time by a joint subcommittee hearing on whether Pakistan is a friend or foe. Framing a congressional hearing in this binary way reflects the sad state of political discourse on Capitol Hill, where complex issues are boiled down to ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answers. Members of Congress dress themselves in righteous indignation and confuse leadership with generating headlines.

A Case of Failing Democracy or Fading Geo-politics

The 'coup' of July 15 in Turkey failed within hours of its start, and given that it enlisted very limited support within the army itself, some called it not a coup but a 'mutiny'.

Biswal’s Dreams Just Pretentious Prattle

So Nisha Biswal, the US State Department’s point person on Sri Lanka, says that Sri Lanka could be another Singapore.That will be the day. If after six visits to the country in 20 months she has still not grasped the basics of Sri Lanka’s socio-political culture and mores, the lack of respect for law and order and the rule of law infused by political interference and intimidation, she could hardly be a messenger of hope and good sense.

El Salvador Faces Dilemma over the Prosecution of War Criminals

The ruling of the highest court to repeal the amnesty law places El Salvador in the dilemma of deciding whether the country should prosecute those who committed serious violations to human rights during the civil war.

We Must Talk: Not Just Ph and China but Us and China, Too

Let us do this chronologically.Days before the release on July 12 of the ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, at The Hague, on the Philippine maritime dispute with China, Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay, Jr. announced he was willing to sit down with Beijing for bilateral talks on the possible joint exploration of mineral and marine resources of the disputed maritime areas in the South China (West Philippine) Sea.

Why we Failed

Qandeel Baloch’s horrific murder in the name of ‘honour’ is testimony to the failure of the women’s movement to overturn patriarchy in Pakistan. Against the backdrop of the spate of anti-women violence, comes a report by Dr Rubina Saigol written for the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, a German foundation. Titled Feminism and the Women’s Movement in Pakistan: Actors, Debates and Strategies, this excellent document should provide much food for thought.

The Americans Should Have Their Own Chilcot

Ever since the Chilcot Inquiry vilified former Prime Minister Tony Blair on July 6 for taking the United Kingdom to war in Iraq, the world is waiting for the other shoe to drop. If Blair deliberately exaggerated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein, the report assessed he had done it at the behest of his American ally George W. Bush. That gives sufficient ground for the Americans to have their own Chilcot. Blair had bought the distribution rights on this of the Atlantic for the biggest lot of hogwash Bush sold to the entire world.

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