The Kashmir conflict started between India and Pakistan after the Maharaja of Kashmir Hari Singh acceded to India – despite it being a Muslim majority area. This research aims to study the history of the Kashmir conflict and the policies adopted by India and Pakistan from a realist perspective. Haleema Bhatti believes that for national interests and state survival, both states have tried their best to maximise their power and dominance in the region.
In “Shooting for a Century: The India-Pakistan Conundrum,” Stephen P. Cohen analyzes the future of India-Pakistan relations. Cohen argues that even after the two rival South Asian states surpass a century since their independence, the ties between them are unlikely to normalize.
In “The Military and Domestic Politics: A Concordance Theory of Civil-Military Relations,” Rebecca Schiff uses the concordance theory to better understand and explore the reason for military intervention than the traditional theory of separation which has its roots in the Western system, making it incompatible for non-Western countries. She also gives due importance to institutional development and culture in understanding the civil-military relations of a state.
Aleena Imran discusses the unparalleled bravery of the great Sepoy Maqbool Hussain, a courageous Pakistani soldier who was imprisoned and tortured by the Indian Army for 40 years. Despite the horrifying abuse he suffered at the hands of his captors during interrogations, he kept repeating the phrase “Pakistan Zindabad”. When his heartless captors cut out his tongue and pulled out his fingernails – he continued writing the phrase with his own blood on the walls of his prison. His return to Pakistan was nothing short of a miracle – and his bravery and sacrifices should continue to serve as an inspiration for all of us.
In “The Silent Coup: A History of India’s Deep State,” Josy Joseph explains India’s democratic erosion and the role of India’s security agencies, politicians, and media in this decline. Through the case of Wahid Ali, he demonstrates how the three are intricately linked in the world’s largest democracy.
In “Buffalo Nationalism: A Critique of Spiritual Fascism,” Kacha Ilaiah Shepherd argues that inequality is embedded in Hinduism due to its Brahminic philosophy. He criticizes India’s caste system and compares India’s oppression of its minorities and lower castes with the buffalo. While the cow is revered in Hindu philosophy, the buffalo on the other hand is demonized. Ilaiah, while criticizing India’s “divide and rule” policy, calls for the construction of a new form of nationalism that promotes equality and justice.
The Oxford Handbook of Indian Foreign Policy is a comprehensive book with 50 essays about India’s foreign relations since the British Raj. Both the authors and editors of this book are prominent and leading experts in India’s international relations.
In this recent instalment of financial investigations, the Suisse Secrets has revealed the details of over 30,000 clients of Credit Suisse. Kashaf Imran lists some of the prominent people who have maintained accounts at this major Swiss bank.
P.R. Kumaraswamy and Md. Muddassir Quamar’s book, India’s Saudi Policy: Bridge to the Future, explores New Delhi’s approach and policies toward Riyadh and how they have had a significant impact in reshaping bilateral relations between India and Saudi Arabia.
Since the Taliban takeover, the situation in Afghanistan has continued to deteriorate to the point where the country is not only facing a humanitarian crisis but also an insurgency in the shape of the Islamic State of Khorasan Province (ISKP). Moreover, Afghanistan’s neighbor – Pakistan – has experienced an increase in terrorist attacks perpetrated by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Amid the political crisis in Pakistan, these attacks have soured Pak-Afghan relations. The author, Sarmad Ishfaq, notes that the continued instability in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and their strained relations, are benefitting India and the United States the most.
Communal violence in India has significantly increased since Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party came to power in 2014. The rise in violence against Indian Muslims, in particular, can be attributed to the BJP’s promotion of Hindutva and its support for the creation of a Hindu-dominated state. The author, Muhammad Mustafa Ahmed Khan, notes that the Modi regime’s implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act and the revocation of Article 370 are a representation of its anti-Muslim policies. He argues that while Pakistan has condemned India’s human rights abuses, the US has remained silent to maintain its economic ties with India.
The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD), an alliance between the US, India, Australia, and Japan, reemerged in the international arena in 2017 as an effort to keep China in check in the Indo-Pacific region. The common interest of countering China bounds these states together but according to the author, Dr. Kankana Debnath, the visit of the Russian and Chinese foreign ministers to New Delhi has threatened the internal dynamics of QUAD.
Ever since it gained independence in 1947, the Republic of India has had strained ties with the United States, a trend that continues today. Despite instances of co-operation on issues like international counter-terrorism, trade, and economic development, the two largest democracies in the world have often diverged on questions of strategic importance, a divergence that has been exacerbated and brought into the spotlight by the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine, which is now continuing into its second month.
India has strong diplomatic, economic, and military ties with Russia and Ukraine. Keeping this in mind, Syed Haris Shah and M. Shahkar Ijaz Khan explain the cause of India’s neutral stance on the Russia-Ukraine war. They argue that the impartiality of New Delhi has both opportunities and challenges for the republic in the future. Moreover, if India openly condemns the Russian aggression in Ukraine, India-Russia relations will suffer a huge blow.
The signs of China and Pakistan’s defense and military cooperation has strengthened after the induction of the multi-role fighter aircraft by the Pakistan Air Force. The author, Syed Haris Shah, believes that the introduction of the J-10C aircraft made by one of China’s leading military and aviation companies, the Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group, is an important measure taken by Pakistan’s security and political leadership to deal with potential security threats to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
The strategic location of the Maldives, particularly its proximity to the straits of Malacca and Hormuz and the Gulf of Aden, has drawn the attention of India and China. While China and India are competing with each other to exert their influence on the Maldives, the island state is fully benefitting from its cordial relations with the rival states. Though the China-India competition has serious implications for the stability of South Asia, the author, Zahra Michelle Khan, argues that the Maldives also presents opportunities for cooperation between the two states.
The book “Pakistan’s Foreign Policy: A Reappraisal” by Shahid Amin provides a comprehensive analysis of the state’s foreign policy throughout the years while keeping in mind the relations between Pakistan and India. The book explains, in great detail, how the perception of an “Indian threat” has influenced Pakistan’s decision-making. Apart from the India-Pakistan relations, Mr. Shahid Amin also elaborates on Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan after the 1979 Soviet invasion, and its relations with the Muslim countries and China.