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Manvendra Singh Blog - DSA's Editor-in-Chief

Editor speaks on Internal Security Issue

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The use of drones to attack militant targets in Pakistan, Yemen and in the Gaza stirs high emotions, much resentment and some praise as well, amongst those practicing statecraft or at the receiving ends of the deadly missiles. The debate, for or against the drones, being put aside for the moment, what their use demonstrates is the ability of the State to reach targets that manpower dependent tactics cannot hope to achieve. These are quantum force multiplier, to use a military cliché. For they use precisely the tactics upon which militants survive, stealth, silence, low manpower and most important of all, surprise. All of which goes to prove their growing induction in professional militaries and security forces.

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Editor speaks on Pakistan Special Issue

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The Raymond Davis affair truly captures the current situation, predicament, of Pakistan like no other has done in the recent past. A perplexing incident that leaves more questions unanswered than it reveals. The shadowy operations that the Pakistani intelligence agencies undertake with their counterparts from the United States of America. The loss of Pakistani lives in circumstances that were as mysterious as they are avoidable. Then the whole drama about the legal status of Raymond Davis, diplomatic or otherwise. Passions heightened by the selectivity of media leaks that ranged from the conspiratorial to the bizarre. Vast public participation in the case as a daily dose of legalese, international relations and national security affairs. A last minute change of legal representatives for the victim families. And the closing chapter in which the acquittal happened by recourse to Shari’a law that has the country in a bind in any case. All of this finally ended with the flight out of Pakistan for Raymond Davis and family members of those that died from his gunfire.

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Founding Editor's Blog - March 2011

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India’s Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft deal is the world’s most lucrative military contract. The scale of the deal and its multi-year nature, make it the most coveted aircraft deal. Amongst the contenders are three from Europe. And if there is a reflection of the reality of the emerging Europe, it is that the older patterns are still around. The spread of the European Union is a fighting tribute to the emergence of a larger identity that recognises geography, a history of enormous hostilities and socio-cultural inheritance that is in any case its best example. But the reality is that certain ‘national’ institutions remain in existence, running contrary to the new Europe of today and tomorrow.

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Founding Editor's Blog - February 2011

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There is nothing predictable about Russia. Things are never going to happen as they are meant to in other countries of the world. For in the country that straddles more time zones than any other, things will always happen in their own way, in the Russian way. It is a world, in a sense, by itself and over there things will happen in ways perplexing to most in the world, but par for the course for most of its citizens. There are, of course, those who are on the other side of ‘the way things happen’. And they sometimes pay a particularly wicked price. But that is Russia, an enigma in itself.

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Editor's Blog - January 2011

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Wikileaks has set the world of governance alight. Julian Assange has assembled a cast of info-warriors, info-martyrs and what not. If it is trunk loads of United States government cables tomorrow it will be another country. Of that there is a certainty, for the doors of defiance have been opened and they cannot easily be bolted again without changing the nature of governance. There is nobody spared, no country free from the vast stores of diplomatic limes. There are a lot more cables on India yet to be released. And Wikileaks have provided enough teasers to whet the appetite. Wikileaks have set the trend.

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