Crime & Justice

The World Can Stop Capital Flight Now

Curbing capital flight from developing countries is long overdue. New sanctions against Russian oligarchs show this can be done with the requisite political will. Recent research also shows how to more effectively stop capital flight.

From Rags to Riches: Power and progress in Abu Dhabi

I recently visited Abu Dhabi and my impressions became intermingled with worries about the war in Ukraine. I also happened to read Livy’s The Early History of Rome, written around the beginning of CE, coming across these lines:

Criminality in Politics Does Not Bode Well for Democracy’s Future

A trend of declining trust in governments and politicians can turn into a threat beyond some point. John Adams, an astute political philosopher and second president of the US, was emphatic: “Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself." This has been a subject of intense debate, with recent but mixed evidence. Is this an overly pessimistic view?

Migrants and Health Workers Play Complex ‘Game’ on Europe’s Fringes

Responding to several shouts Viraj emerges from the ruins of his shelter in northwest Bosnia. He is originally from India but is now squatting near Bihać in what remains of a house abandoned since the 1990s Balkans war.

Pakistan’s Historic Court Ruling: ‘Rome Has Spoken, the Case Is Finished!’

Pakistan’s impossibly debonair and incredibly urbane cricketing star turned politician, Imran Khan, is a man of a myriad parts. Where English is spoken and cricket is played, he remains a hero. Time was when leading his team in many a Test match he caused blood to rapidly pulsate through Pakistani veins. In a nation buffeted by the vicissitudes of misfortune and thirsting for pride, he had fulfilled his people’s dream by winning them the ultimate prize in cricket, the World Cup. But then he switched games and went into politics. The fates, with him for a while, eventually withdrew their favour. He gambled with a tactic that was no more than a political stunt. Alas it failed, and the Courts in his country refused him relief. But this essay is not so much about him. It about the Courts that finally caused his fall. It is also about the role the judicial organ of the State has played along the inscrutable path of Pakistan’s constitutional and political destiny.

Stop the War: Act for Justice, Climate & Peace

Russia’s war in Ukraine has left many communities facing catastrophe. In a world already wracked by multiple crises such as searing inequality and escalating climate change, this conflict is tearing through communities.

War in Ukraine & Rise in Arms Spending Undermine Development Aid to the World’s Poor

The unprecedented flow of arms to Ukraine, and the rising miliary spending by European nations to strengthen their defenses, are threatening to undermine development aid to the world’s poorer nations.

Global Impact of Ukraine War on Food, Energy & Finance Systems

Now, since the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine, the world’s attention has been focused on the war’s terrifying levels of death, destruction and suffering.

How Putin Underestimated Ukraine

In the eyes of the Kremlin leadership, the basic precondition of the successful war against Ukraine has been the perceived power of the Russian Armed Forces and possible superiority over the Ukrainian forces.

United Nations & its Leadership Challenged by an Existential Crisis

The other day a friend asked me “Can Russia be expelled from the General Assembly by a two-thirds majority?” Almost impossible to do that, I responded.

Ukrainian President’s Plea: Expel Russia or be Ready to Close Down the UN

A legendary quote attributed to Joseph Stalin most likely applies to the United Nations too. “How many divisions does the Pope have?” asked the Soviet leader, interrupting a speech by Winston Churchill in a bygone era.

In Sri Lanka, Rajapaksas on the Ropes

With the economy in freefall and basics such as food and fuel in dangerously short supply, there is mounting public anger against a failing and desperate government in Sri Lanka.

War, Displacement & A Global Refugee Crisis: A Wake-Up Call to Increase Refugee Participation

It has been a month since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has now created one of the biggest refugee crises of modern times. More than 3.7 million people have left the country, in what has become the fastest exodus globally since World War II.

NATO On Knife-Edge As War Expands: Can China Be The Peace Maker?

Coral Bell, the great Australian political thought-leader had lucidly described in the 1970s how a “crisis-slide” could become unstoppable as it morphs into a catastrophe: “Gradually, imperceptibly but inevitably there is a build-up of events”, she writes, “rain falls in ever increasing volumes …becomes progressively more irresistible… until the dam breaks”. Ideally, the crisis management process should have been put in place as soon as the relevant observer notices the rains grow heavy, she argues; the disaster of the bursting dam was owed to the delay. A simple but profound metaphor, so apt for crises in international relations, also underscoring the challenge of the choice of appropriate timing for leaders.

UN’s Guterres Must be Visibly Proactive as Peacemaker in Ukraine

In an opinion piece published in PassBlue on 15 March 2022, historian Stephen Schlesinger asked, "Where is the UN's Guterres?" as Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked war on Ukraine has been dominating the world’s headline news.

LexisNexis Rule of Law Foundation Finds 67% of Global Public Disapprove of Russian Military Invasion of Ukraine

LexisNexis Legal & Professional®, a leading global provider of information and analytics, today released global data and public sentiments regarding the Ukrainian invasion. The ongoing feedback is being collected via the LexisNexis Rule of Law Monitor, which continuously surveys the world’s population on issues related to the Rule of Law.

War on Ukraine also an Assault on World’s Most Vulnerable People & Countries

Ukraine is on fire. The country is being decimated before the eyes of the world. The impact on civilians is reaching terrifying proportions. Countless innocent people – including women and children – have been killed. After being hit by Russian forces, roads, airports and schools lie in ruins.

Ukraine Incursion, World Stagflation

Finger pointing in the blame game over Russia’s Ukraine incursion obscures the damage it is doing on many fronts. Meanwhile, billions struggle to cope with worsening living standards, exacerbated by the pandemic and more. Losing sight in the fog of war US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken insists, “the Russian people will suffer the consequences of their leaders’ choices”. Western leaders and media seem to believe their unprecedentedcrushing sanctions” will have a “chilling effect” on Russia.

US Remains Ukraine’s Largest Military Aid Benefactor

Conventional arms have been a central, and at times controversial, component of the U.S.-Ukraine relationship since 2014. Indeed, former President Trump’s impeachment proceedings originated with an alleged quid-pro-quo related suspension of military aid to Ukraine.

A Rude Awakening for America and its Allies

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was certainly not a surprise and has unambiguously exposed the West’s weakness. The question is what lesson the United States and its allies should learn from it and what measures they must now undertake to prevent Putin or any future ruthless Russian autocrat from ever daring to invade another country.

The Pains of Ukraine: The Future towards a Tripolar World?

Change is a uniquely predictable phenomenon in nature. Also, by logical extension, in politics. Ions ago the observation of Heraclitus of Ephesus that the world is in constant flux, and one never steps into the same river twice is an incontrovertible axiom. Hence the idea that any existing global order, or a political system on the international matrix with a certain hierarchical power arrangement can sustain perennially, would be an erroneous one. When I was a student of Cold War and Global strategy in the mid-seventies the concept of 'paradigm shift' propounded by the American physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn in his tome "The structure of Scientific Revolutions" enormously interested me. Simply put, Kuhn argued that the shift occurs when any dominant paradigm under which science operates (his main concern was physics though this also applies to the social sciences) confronts new phenomena that renders it incompatible. To me the thesis remains relevant. A case in point is the place of the United States of America in the global scheme of things. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s , the existing bipolarity in the world order of US-Soviet dominance ended. The US emerged as the only 'hyperpower 'an expression used by the French Foreign Minister Hubert Vedrine in 1999,'and held absolute unchallenged sway in a unipolar world.

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