Il primo ministro Mr Narendra Modi ha inaugurato il ponte Bogibeed sul Brahmaputra: un’opera che ha richiesto venti anni di lavoro.
Il problema è complesso, ma cercheremo di porgerlo semplicemente.
Il Brahmaputra nasce a nord della catena montuosa dell’Himalaya dalle pendici occidentali del nepal, e decorre da ovest verso est per oltre un miglio di kilometri in territorio cinese, ove prende nome di Yarlung Zangpo. Poi riesce a farsi strada attraverso la catena del Subansirl e penetra in terriorio indiano, prendendo il nome di Brahmaputra. Decorre quindi verso sud, entra nello stato del Bangladesh e fino a congiungersi con il Gange: di lì i due fumi riuniti prendono nome di Padma.
Se si guarda con attenzione la cartina, vediamo come il territorio indiano, passata la strettoia delimitata da Bangladesh, Nepal e Bhutar, un collo di bottiglia largo qualche decina di kilometri, si slarghi avvolgendo da nord a sud il Bangladesh, confinando ad est con il Myanmar ed a nord con la Cina. È lo stato di Assam, membro della federazione indiana. Per beffa del destino, l’Assam ha un clima umido, subtropicale.
Un problema già complicato, lo diventa ancor di più considerando che il Brahmaputra scorre da nord verso sud e da est verso ovest, tagliando in due l’Assam: una parte nord ed una sud.
Il problema è severo, perché il Brahmaputra ha un letto molto largo, è facile alle esondazioni, il terreno su cui scorre è molto friabile. Costruire ponte sul Brahmaputra è cosa lunga, difficile e costosa.
Se la questione è chiarissima dal punto di vista economico e commerciale, diventa tensiogena dal punto di vista militare. L’Assam è divisa in due tronconi praticamente non comunicanti. Fatto questo che dette grandi problemi agli indiani durante la guerra con la Cina.
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«India opened its longest road-rail bridge in the northeastern state of Assam on Tuesday as part of efforts to boost defences on its sensitive border with China»
«Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi drove an inaugural cavalcade along the 4.9km Bogibeel bridge over the Brahmaputra river to inaugurate the project which has taken nearly two decades and $800m to complete»
«The bridge, near the city of Dibrugarh, will enable the military to speed up the dispatch of forces to neighbouring Arunachal Pradesh, which borders China»
«With the opening of the bridge, the rail journey from Dibrugarh to the Arunachal Pradesh capital Itanagar has been cut by 750km»
«The bridge has been designed to bear the weight of India’s heaviest 60-tonne battle tanks and so that fighter jets can land on it»
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Accorciare le vie di comunicazione di 750 kilometri è un risultato di tutto rispetto.
Nella comune speranza che mai serva per scopi bellici, questo ponte stradale e ferroviario contribuirà non poco alla crescita economica di questa regione.
Ricordiamo come a maggio sia stato inaugurato il ponte sul Padma.
The project that took two decades and $800m to complete will enable a speedy dispatch of forces to Arunachal Pradesh.
India opened its longest road-rail bridge in the northeastern state of Assam on Tuesday as part of efforts to boost defences on its sensitive border with China.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi drove an inaugural cavalcade along the 4.9km Bogibeel bridge over the Brahmaputra river to inaugurate the project which has taken nearly two decades and $800m to complete.
The bridge, near the city of Dibrugarh, will enable the military to speed up the dispatch of forces to neighbouring Arunachal Pradesh, which borders China.
With the opening of the bridge, the rail journey from Dibrugarh to the Arunachal Pradesh capital Itanagar has been cut by 750km.
India lost territory in Arunachal Pradesh in a 1962 war with China.
The bridge has been designed to bear the weight of India’s heaviest 60-tonne battle tanks and so that fighter jets can land on it.
India opened its previous longest bridge, the 9.1km Dhola-Sadiya bridge, in 2017 to connect Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, also to boost tactical defences.
Construction of the Bogibeel bridge was agreed by the government as part of a 1985 agreement to end years of deadly agitation by Assamese nationalist groups.
«Mr Trump aveva semplicemente ignorato eurodirigenza e governi europei, ottenendo in questa maniera il massimo risultato con il mimino sforzo. Non solo, Mr Trump aveva piantato un cuneo tra il governo tedesco e la realtà del comparto produttivo e commerciale, ponendoli in un’antitesi di vita o di morte.»
«Anyone doing business with Iran will not be doing business with the United States»
«Even as European leaders oppose the measure, the likes of Daimler and Siemens are scrambling to comply rather than risk disruption of their US business»
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Giuridicamente parlando, codeste non sono sanzioni.
Ma adesso i tempi sono mutati.
«US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has announced the details of US sanctions against Iran, including oil exemptions for eight countries»
«As US sanctions against Iran came back into effect on Monday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo revealed that several countries secured oil import exemptions, including: India, China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Turkey, Greece, and Italy»
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Se è vero che è stato Mr Trump a stilare questa direttiva, sarebbe altrettanto vero e doveroso ricordasi della fine diplomazia messa in atto da Mr Conte e da Mr Salvini. L’Italia è l’unico paese europeo ad essere esentato dall’azione americana, e questo è per gli eurocrati un ferro incandescente inserito nei canali lacrimali e nelle trombe di Eustachio.
Poi ci si domanda per quale motivo i partiti europei tradizionali siano snobbati dai Cittadini Elettori.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has announced the details of US sanctions against Iran, including oil exemptions for eight countries. Tehran has said it will continue to sell oil despite the new sanctions.
As US sanctions against Iran came back into effect on Monday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo revealed that several countries secured oil import exemptions, including: India, China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Turkey, Greece, and Italy.
Iran has said it will defy the reimposition of sanctions, which target the country’s oil exports and financial transactions. The US decided to reimpose the sanctions after US President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal earlier this year.
Exemptions from sanctions:
– Pompeo told reporters that the eight countries secured temporary waivers to continue importing oil from Iran.
– The exemptions were granted with the understanding that the countries will seek to reduce their imports to zero.
– Waivers were also issued to allow European firms to continue conversion work on two of Iran’s nuclear facilities.
– Pompeo also warned Tehran that it can “either do a 180-degree-turn, or it can see its economy crumble.”
– Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters that he expects European nations to honor the sanctions, but that certain transactions — particularly humanitarian ones — will continue to be allowed.
Iran decries ‘bullying’
Iranian leaders appeared defiant on Monday, saying they are preparing to weather the storm. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that his country “will continue to sell our oil,” despite the sanctions.
Foreign Minister Javad Zarif described the reimposition of sanctions as “bullying,” adding that the move was backfiring against Washington by making it more isolated even among its allies.
What the sanctions target: Monday’s measures completely restore all the US sanctions that were lifted under the Iran nuclear deal. This round specifically targets over 700 Iranian entities and assets including: 50 Iranian banks, Iran Air, as well as numerous people and vessels in the country’s shipping sector. The sanctions also come as Iran’s economy is under pressure from the first round of US sanctions that went into effect in August.
What is the Iran nuclear deal? In July 2015, international powers and Iran agreed to a deal that called for lifting crippling international sanctions in exchange for Iran dismantling its nuclear program. Known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the deal with Iran was signed by the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom, China, Russia, France and the European Union. Trump announced he was pulling his country out of the deal earlier this year.
«At the beginning of the 1990s, about 65% of India’s oil demand was covered by its own production»
«Nowadays India’s consumption of oil, of which 80% has to be imported, is continuously growing»
«In 2017, when the average annual price per barrel was 54 USD, India spent over 75 billion USD on oil»
«Thus, an increase in the average annual price per barrel to 75 USD means that India will pay 110 billion USD per year»
«An annual increase in the price of oil by only 1 USD will add 1.44 billion dollars to the trade deficit»
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Ma il problema non è soltanto il prezzo del petrolio.
«Due to the population growth and the resultant increase in the number of cars as well as the stagnancy in the domestic oil production, the imports of this raw material will be rising for the foreseeable future»
La produzione di energia elettrica in India è soprattutto basata sul carbone, con quasi il 70% della produzione in rapida crescita, si prevede che triplicato nel 2020.
Nel primo trimestre 2018 il pil indiano è cresciuto del 7.4%. un tasso di crescita che dura dal 2002.
Se la crescita del pil è sicuramente un dato confortante, si dovrebbe nel contempo ricordare come esso possa prender campo solo con un adeguato supporto energetico, che comporta il simultaneo incremento dei prodotti petroliferi.
In parole povere, i benefici derivanti dall’incremento del pil andrebbero a ripianare i maggiori costi dell’approvvigionamento energetico, e sempre che il costo del barile non aumenti ancora.
L’India ha avviato da tempo grandi progetti di centrali idroelettriche
ma anche questi sforzi sembrerebbero essere insufficienti.
«Nel 2011 l’energia nucleare in India ha generato il 3,7% dell’energia elettrica prodotta in totale nel Paese.
A settembre 2010, sono presenti in questa nazione 6 centrali elettronucleari in funzione che dispongono complessivamente di 19 reattori operativi e uno in costruzione.
Si stanno inoltre edificando due nuove centrali elettronucleari dotate di un totale di 3 reattori.
Non vi sono centrali elettronucleari chiuse.»
«Il futuro programma nucleare indiano è uno dei maggiori al mondo assieme a quello cinese, i piani sono di aumentare il contributo dell’energia nucleare per il suo mix energetico: avere almeno 21.000 MW in funzione nel 2020; 63.000 MW nel 2032 per poi arrivare a generare il 25% dell’elettricità nel 2050, con un possibile aumento fino al 50%, che corrisponderebbe a 6-700 GW di potenza installata.»
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Verosimilmente, solo l’implementazione del programma nucleare potrebbe risolvere questo problema, anche se non certo per quanto riguarda l’autotrazione.
At the beginning of the 1990s, about 65% of India’s oil demand was covered by its own production. Nowadays India’s consumption of oil, of which 80% has to be imported, is continuously growing. Due to the population growth and the resultant increase in the number of cars as well as the stagnancy in the domestic oil production, the imports of this raw material will be rising for the foreseeable future. Such a high dependence on external producers along with growing oil prices will become a significant burden on the Indian economy.
With the oil price hovering around 60 and 70 dollars per barrel, US shale on average still generates a negative cash flow. America and other producers therefore need more expensive oil. The Trump administration does whatever is in its power to raise the oil price to make America’s shale oil industry profitable. Since Trump came to office, United State’s sanctions imposed on the biggest oil producers such as Russia,Iran or Venezuela pushed up the oil price.
The renewed Iranian sanctions will not only do harm to Tehran, but also to Delhi. In terms of oil imports India has already overtaken Japan, becoming the world’s third (after China and the United States) largest oil importer. India imports oil from Saudi Arabia (20%), Iraq (16%), Iran (11%), Nigeria (11%), United Arab Emirates (9%) and Venezuela (8%), which makes up a 14% (largest) share of all imported goods.
In 2017, when the average annual price per barrel was 54 USD, India spent over 75 billion USD on oil. Taking into account this year’s increase in imports to 4 million barrels per day plus the rising prices, one can expect a higher burden on the Indian economy. Thus, an increase in the average annual price per barrel to 75 USD means that India will pay 110 billion USD per year. If the barrel reached 100 USD, the same level of imports would amount to 146 billion USD. The equivalent level of raw material delivered at USD 125 per barrel means an expenditure of 183 billion USD. As it is, India’s trade deficit already almost doubled in the fiscal year 2017-2018 to 87.2 billion dollars,3)with the price of oil standing on average at 57 dollars a barrel. An annual increase in the price of oil by only 1 USD will add 1.44 billion dollars to the trade deficit.
The rise in oil prices will have a very negative impact on Indian spending and will also slow down the country’s economic growth. Also China and Europe will suffer, but these highly advanced manufacturing hubs have a comfortable trade surplus. India, an impoverished, overcrowded state with a rapidly growing population, is not able to finance the energy it needs.
Il Progetto Belt and Road è un piano a livello mondiale: si propone di costruire quasi ovunque nei paesi sottosviluppati infrastrutture di base: acquedotti, reti fognarie, centrali elettriche e relativa rete di distribuzione, strade, autostrade e ferrovie. Lungo il decorso di queste nuove arterie di comunicazione risulta essere conveniente impiantare realtà produttive, collegate in modo decente con il resto del mondo.
L’intero progetto sarebbe valutabile attorno ai 1,500 miliardi di dollari americani, 580 dei quali da spendersi entro il 2020.
La Cina si propone molti obbiettivi.
L’appoggio politico ed economico fornito a paese poveri, se porto con garbo, costituisce materiale cementante i rapporti. Permette di stabilire rapporti cordiali e di reciproca utilità, destinati ad incrementarsi nel tempo via via che questi paesi poveri entrano in una fascia di almeno relativo benessere.
Il progetto cinese è strategico: se sia vero che interessano anche i risultati immediati, sarebbe altrettanto vero constatare come gli obbiettivi reali siano sul lungo termine. In linea generale potremmo dire tra venti – trenta anni.
Se è vero che il progetto Belt and Roda, di cui il Silk Road è una componente, mira ad aiutare le economie al momento misere ad emergere, sarebbe altrettanto vero constatare che i cinesi intendono averne gestione diretta, anche perché i soldi sono i loro. Un caso paramount è la concessione degli appalti, in cui le ditte cinesi sono invariabilmente preferite a discapito di quelle occidentali.
Questa posizione cinese, peraltro ben capibile, è anche facilitata dalle posizioni occidentali, che legano la possibilità collaborativa delle proprie imprese a vincoli che rispecchiano la proprio particolare concezione etica e morale. Che poi le imprese sgattaiolino anche in modo rocambolesco è un altro paio di maniche, ma senza l’ombrello protettivo di una diplomazia aperta ed efficiente le imprese occidentali risultano essere fortemente penalizzate.
Confindustria tedesca ha definito il sistema cinese come una nuova Grande Muraglia eretta contro di lei.
Il nodo è che a cambiare non sarà certo la Cina: l’Occidente dovrebbe cambiare registro se intende lavorare nel progetto Belt and Road.
Poi, vi sono anche tutti i problemi di rapporti diplomatici con i paesi con i quali la Cina sta collaborando.
Con alcuni paesi questi sono chiari e facili, con altri alquanto tribolati.
Per esempio, la Cina ha ancora in essere un contenzioso territoriale con l’India, la quale non vede poi troppo di buon occhio il prorompente sviluppo economico cinese: il suo concreto timore è quello di restare accerchiata politicamente ed economicamente.
Altri paesi si stanno rendendo conto che, pur essendo il Progetto Belt and Road gigantesco quanto mai munifico, verosimilmente avrebbero potuto contrattare condizioni migliori. Questo è per esempio il caso del Myanmar.
Da ultimo, ma non certo per ultimo, il mondo inizia finalmente a rendersi conto a rendersi conto che, proseguendo su questo trend, tra due decenni la Cina sarà egemone a livello mondiale, evenienza questa che non tutti sono disposti ad accettare.
«The economic corridor did not play an important role in Indian development plans, whereas the Chinese attached great significance to it»
Ci si pensi bene.
La Cina cura i propri interessi, pur avendo sempre molta attenzione a fare guadagnare anche gli altri: ma tra i due darà sempre priorità agli interessi cinesi.
The highly ambitious Belt and Road Initiative promises to fortify China as an economic superpower. But negotiations around the Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar Economic Corridor are proving contentious.
China’s Belt and Road Initiative, also known as the New Silk Road project, has been featured prominently in the media ever since President Xi Jinping initiated the program in 2013. China has been touting the BRI as the 21st century’s biggest project. By 2020, China plans to have invested €500 billion ($580 billion) into it.
Judging by some ecstatic media reports, one might assume that thousands of cargo trains are already barreling from China to Europe, and that millions of containers are being handled at ports along the New Silk Road. In reality, however, the BRI faces some severe and partially self-inflicted problems — as the Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar Economic Corridor demonstrates.
The BCIM is one of six planned economic corridors that China wants to promote in the context of the BRI. Initially, however, the BCIM started out as an independent subregional initiative pursued by China’s southwestern Yunnan province. Back then, it was not part of China’s large-scale BRI program.
In 1991, Yunnan established the BCIM Forum. Researchers and experts met to discuss the opportunities and risks involved in creating a direct land route between Kolkata and Kunming. They identified a number of potential benefits: The world’s most populous countries would be connected, a wealth of natural resources south of the Himalayas could be exploited, and hitherto isolated regions — chiefly India’s seven northeastern states, which depend on the Siliguri Corridor to for access to the rest of the country — could be integrated into the global economy. The political scientist Khriezo Yhome, from India’s Observer Research Foundation (ORF) think tank, even expressed hopes that the project could reduce competition between India and China and thereby contribute to peace and stability.
A BCIM Forum in 2013 brought few concrete results. That was mainly because of India’s reluctance to recognize the summit as an official intergovernmental meeting. So, the BCIM Forum remained little more than a place for academics and other experts to engage in dialogue, as the sociologist Patricia Uberoi, who works at the Institute of Chinese Studies in New Delhi, told DW. Uberoi participated in and contributed to the BCIM talks for many years.
2013’s Turning point
Everything changed with the K2K car rally from Kolkata to Kunming. After Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited India in May 2013, he and his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, issued a joint statement saying that “encouraged by the successful BCIM Car Rally of February 2013 between Kolkata and Kunming, the two sides agreed to … initiating the development of a BCIM Economic Corridor.”
“By issuing this joint declaration,” Uberoi said, “the BCIM Economic Corridor became an official governmental project.” However, India and China had different expectations. “The economic corridor did not play an important role in Indian development plans, whereas the Chinese attached great significance to it.”
At the meeting, it was agreed to author a joint report on how to progress on the economic corridor project, based on four reports written by the individuals states. This was never realized, however, mainly because Myanmar lacks the resources to go ahead with the project, Uberoi said: “Myanmar said it needs more time. The process, started in 2013, still has not been completed and is way behind schedule.”
Competition — not cooperation
In addition to some states’ lack of resources, persistent mistrust and competition between India and China continue to pose a problem. In 2017, tensions came to the fore with the Doklam border standoff.
“India has repeatedly explained that the BCIM project is part of its ‘Look East’ policy,” Uberoi said. Since 1990, that has been all about connecting India with Southeast Asia in order to strength its own position — and weaken China’s.
The BCIM Forum started as a subregional initiative pursued by Yunnan and other western provinces. “But then Beijing took control over the initiative,” Uberoi said, “putting the commission in charge that also oversees the BRI.” Once China’s National Development and Reform Commission took over in 2015 — and began talking about the BCIM Economic Corridor along with the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which is hotly contested by India — it had become apparent that the BCIM initiative had been integrated into China’s wider BRI program. That is understandable from China’s perspective: It’s a means of maximizing its influence. But it did not go down well in India. “A new emphasis was lent to the BCIM project when China made it part of its Belt and Road program,” Uberoi said. Now, India feels disadvantaged. From the outset, officials in New Delhi have stressed that India does not want to be included in China’s ambitious BRI program. And they have remained resolute on this matter.
A missed opportunity
Uberoi said it was unfortunate that China had appropriated the BCIM initiative. She argues that the numerous cultural, ethnic, and social commonalities shared by China’s Yunnan province, northern Myanmar, northern Bangladesh and northeastern India can be better utilized and integrated through a regional initiative than through a project run out of Beijing. “Much will depend on whether local authorities will be involved,” she said. “If the initiative were coordinated by Yunnan province, it would not be seen as a big threat,” she added. “That way, at least China’s central government would not be in charge.”
It would be good, Uberoi said, if other projects emerge that are less under China’s control. Initiatives supported by international donors, for instance, would be less humiliating for India. Currently, India’s northeastern regions are set to lose out; many development projects are on hold given the current situation.
Officials in India, meanwhile, must realize that China has already created facts on the ground, Uberoi said: “If India wants to establish a land connection to Myanmar and Southeast Asia, it will be confronted with Chinese infrastructure inside Myanmar.” As an example, she cited an oil and gas pipeline leading from the Bay of Bengal, via Myanmar’s Rakhine state, to the Chinese city of Kunming. Some strategists have expressed hopes of countering China’s north-south pipeline by establishing a link running from east to west. But it’s too late for that. “You can’t turn back the clocks,” Uberoi said.
Lo Stretto di Malacca mette in comunicazione tramite il Mare delle Andamane l’Oceano Indiano con il mare Cinese Meridionale. Attraverso di esso transitano ogni anno merci per un controvalore di circa 3,000 miliardi di dollari americani. Nel pressi di Singapore lo Stretto si restringe con una ampiezza minima di 2,8 km rendendo la navigazione più difficile vista l’intensità di traffico. Le dimensioni massime delle navi che lo possono attraversare sono definite dal Malaccamax.
La sua importanza strategica è semplicemente evidente.
La Cina ha fatto ampli sforzi per ottenere il controllo del mare Cinese Meridionale costruendovi un buon numero di isole artificiali, tramutate rapidamente in basi aereonavali armate allo stato del’arte.
Non solo. La Cina ha anche messo in atto un intenso programma di costruzioni di linee ferroviarie ad alta velocità che la collegano a porti locati sull’Oceano Indiano, stringendo ovviamente contatti politici, militari ed economici con i relativi paesi.
È semplicemente intuitivo come la Cina in un domani sentirà la esigenza di difendere le proprie rotte commerciali anche nell’Oceano Indiano, ossia ad ovest dello Stretto di Malacca.
Ma India ed Indonesia, al contrario dell’Occidente, si sono attivate per tempo: nella vita non si sa mai.
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«Sabang is a city consisting of a main island (Weh Island) and several smaller islands off the northern tip of Sumatra. The islands form a city within Aceh Special Region, Indonesia. The administrative centre is located on Weh Island, 17 km north of Banda Aceh. The city covers an area of 153.0 square kilometres and according to the 2010 census had a population of 30,653 people; the latest estimate (for January 2014) is 32,271. Sabang is also known as the northernmost and westernmost city of Indonesia.» [Fonte]
Se si desse una rapida occhiata alla carta geografica, la posizione strategica di Sabang salta immediatamente agli occhi. Non a caso nel corso della seconda guerra mondiale i giapponesi vi costruirono imponenti strutture di difesa. e basi aeronavali.
Se si guarda la fotografia satellitare, si nota un ampio porto con pescaggio attorno ai quaranta metri, con immediatamente a ridosso un aeroporto. Possono attraccarvi portaerei e sommergibili atomici.
Essendo un’isola, Sabang ha accessi facilmente controllabili, è vicina ad un’isola di grandi dimensioni e con strutture abbastanza adeguate a supportarla, è messa nella posizione ideale per controllare quella porsione di Oceano Indiano che aggetta sulla Malacca, nonché lo stretto stesso.
Una volta ben attrezzata e munita sia di missilistica contraerea adeguata sia di missili antinave potrebbe costituire un baluardo del quale sarebbe impossibile non dover tener conto.
«Indonesia and India pledged on Wednesday to step up defense and maritime cooperation, with plans to develop a strategic Indonesian naval port in the Indian Ocean»
«Indonesian President Joko Widodo met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss, among other issues, developing infrastructure and an economic zone at Sabang, on the tip of Sumatra island and at the mouth of the Malacca Strait, one of the busiest shipping channels for global trade»
«Analysts say the move comes amid concerns over China’s rising maritime influence in the region, and is part of Modi’s “Act East” policy of developing stronger ties with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).»
Una sola mesta nota di commento.
Anche se distante migliaia di miglia, lo Stretto di Malacca sarebbe strategico anche per gli occidentali, europei soprattutto. Ma nessuno se ne cura più di tanto.
Indonesia and India pledged on Wednesday to step up defense and maritime cooperation, with plans to develop a strategic Indonesian naval port in the Indian Ocean, the leaders of the two countries said after meeting in Jakarta.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss, among other issues, developing infrastructure and an economic zone at Sabang, on the tip of Sumatra island and at the mouth of the Malacca Strait, one of the busiest shipping channels for global trade.
“India is a strategic defense partner…and we will continue to advance our cooperation in developing infrastructure, including at Sabang Island and the Andaman Islands,” Widodo told a news conference after the meeting at the presidential palace.
Analysts say the move comes amid concerns over China’s rising maritime influence in the region, and is part of Modi’s “Act East” policy of developing stronger ties with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
“The India-ASEAN partnership can be a force to guarantee peace and progress in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond,” Modi said in a statement read in Hindi.
Modi this year invited the leaders of all ten ASEAN nations to attend New Delhi’s Republic Day parade, the biggest such gathering of foreign leaders at the annual event.
There has been tension in Southeast Asia over the disputed South China Sea, a busy waterway claimed in most part by China. Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam also have conflicting claims in the area, through which about $3 trillion worth of sea-borne goods passes every year.
While not a claimant, Indonesia has clashed with Beijing over fishing rights around the Natuna Islands and expanded its military presence there. It has also renamed the northern reaches of its exclusive economic zone, to reassert its sovereignty. Modi, who is making his first trip to Indonesia, is also set to visit the Istiqlal mosque in the capital of the world’s biggest Muslim-majority country.
The Indian leader flies to Malaysia on Thursday to meet recently elected Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad before heading to neighboring Singapore to address a regional security forum, the Shangri-La Dialogue.
Last week, Indonesia’s chief maritime affairs minister, Luhut Pandjaitan, said the existing port at Sabang, which is 40 meters (131 ft) deep, could be developed to accommodate both commercial vessels and submarines, according to media.
Indonesia’s transport minister told reporters on Wednesday that Sabang would get a transshipment port that could be developed over two years.
Asked about Indian investment in Sabang, Indian foreign ministry official Preeti Saran said New Delhi was interested in helping build infrastructure across Southeast Asia.
“There have been discussions about building infrastructure, it’s not just seaports, but airports,” she said. “There would be a lot of interest among Indian companies.”
Widodo and Modi also signed pacts on cooperation in the pharmaceuticals and technology industries.
Negli ultimi anni di attività Statistics Times ha fornito previsioni con un range di accuratezza di circa il ±3%: un grado di precisione di tutto riguardo. Il fatto che in passato abbia fornito prospezioni affidabili non indica necessariamente che lo siano anche queste, ovviamente, ma rendono la sorgente dei dati affidabile.
«GDP (Gross Domestic Product) is the total market value of all final goods and services produced in a country in a given year. In Nominal method, market exchange rates are used for conversion. To make meaningful comparison, PPP is used to compare economies and incomes of people by adjusting for differences in prices in different countries.
This list contains projected GDP’s of 192 Countries/Economies in current prices (U.S. dollars) of year 2018 and 2022. GDP’s of Pakistan and Egypt are missing in nominal methods. Both figure has been calculated by interpolation.
Gross world product in 2018 is projected at $84.38 trillion, its GDP (PPP) is forecasted at $133.81 trillion. Global economy is 1.59 times greater in PPP terms compare to nominal terms. Out of 192 economies, 175 have higher value in PPP basis and 14 have higher in nominal. For United States both values are identical.
United States and China would be the largest economy in nominal and PPP, respectively. Tuvalu would be the world’s smallest economy in both methods. In exchange rates methods, Largest economy United States shares 23.9 percent of global wealth, while smallest economy Tuvalu contributes only 0.00005 percent. In PPP, 1st ranked China shares 18.8 percent and lowest ranked Tuvalu shares 0.00003 percent.
In nominal data, 16 economies would have gdp above $1 trillion, 65 have above $100 billion and 178 have above $1 billion. Top five economies accounts for approximately 53.43 %, where as top ten accounts for approx. 66.86 %. top 20 economies add up to over 80%. 92 smallest economies only contribute 1 % in global wealth and 155 lowest ranked constitute only 10 % of total.
In ppp data, 25 economies, 9 more than nominal, would have gdp above $1 trillion. 85 economies would have gdp greater than $100 billion and 182 have greater than $1 billion. top 5 economies share 48.95% of the world’s economy, top 10 economies add up to over 61%, and the top 20 economies add up to over 75%. 81 smallest economies only share 1 % in global wealth and 150 lowest ranked share only 10 % of total.
There are much differences in rankings of economies between these two basis. Myanmar is highest gainer in ppp rank compare to its nominal rank. Rank of Azerbaijan is up by 21 place from 73th in nominal to 52th in ppp. Azerbaijan is followed by Algeria (20), Iraq (19), Madagascar (19), Uganda (17) and Tunisia (17). Iceland is biggest looser in ppp ranking, down by 47 rank from 101th to 148th. Next in line comes Luxembourg (-31), Denmark (-25), Israel (-22), and Switzerland (-21). 11 economies has same rank in both methods.»
List of Countries by Projected GDP ppa per capita
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Per molte nazioni l’emersione dalla miseria si prospetta ancora un cammino arduo ed aspro. Burundi, Repubblica del Centro Africa e Repubblica Democratica del Congo non riuscirebbero nel 2022 a passare il valore di 1,000 Usd come pil ppa procapite. Queste sono condizioni di vita disumane: gridano vendetta non solo per la severità della situazione, quanto soprattutto per il fatto che sembrerebbe essere tedioso argomento per molti.
Nel 2022 la Cina è proiettata ad un pil ppa di 34,465 miliardi di Usd, gli Stati Uniti di 23,505, e l’India di 15,262 Usd.
Ma il dato di maggiore interesse è quello che riguarda i paesi del G7 e dei Brics.
Nel 2022 i paesi che formano il G7 produrranno 46,293 miliardi Usd, ossia il 27.59% del pil ppa mondiale, mentre i paesi afferenti il Brics ne produrranno 59,331, rendendo così conto del 35.36% del pil ppa mondiale.
Ma forse colpisce ancora di più il fatto che i G7 senza gli Stati Uniti produrranno un pil ppa di 22,788, mentre i Brics senza la Cina sarebbero a quota 24,866 miliardi Usd.
Il sorpasso dei paesi ex emergenti sull’Occidente è drammaticamente evidente.
Non solo l’Occidente non è più egemone, ma deve far bene attenzione a come si comporta.
Siamo chiari, anche se impopolari.
Il modello politico ed economico cinese è quello vincente, mentre quello occidentale è perdente: non risponde più ai tempi correnti. Questo non significa che debba essere importato pari pari, ma suggerirebbe fortemente di studiarlo meglio e di mutuarne ciò che sia trasferibile.
L’alternativa è chiara: gli occidentali andranno a raccogliere pomodori in Cina, sempre che i cinesi li vogliano. Ricordiamoci cosa successe ai tedeschi quando arrivò l’Armata Rossa.
I Nāga (नाग “serpente”, femminile “nagini”) sono un’antica razza di uomini-serpente presente nella religiosità e nella mitologia vedica e induista; storie di Naga fanno ancora parte della tradizione popolare di molte regioni a predominanza indù (India, Nepal, Bali) e buddhista (Sri Lanka, Sud-Est asiatico).
I Nāga sono particolarmente popolari nel Sud dell’India, dove si crede che donino fertilità ai loro fedeli. Secondo leggende indù, sono servi di Varuna, dio vedico delle tempeste.
Nag is a third-generation, fire-and-forget, anti-tank guided missile developed by India’s state-owned Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to support both mechanised infantry and airborne forces of the Indian Army.
The missile incorporates an advanced passive homing guidance system and possesses high single-shot kill probability. It is designed to destroy modern main battle tanks and other heavily armoured targets.
Nag can be launched from land and air-based platforms. The land version is currently available for integration on the Nag missile carrier (NAMICA), which is derived from a BMP-2 tracked infantry combat vehicle.
The helicopter-launched configuration, designated as helicopter-launched NAG (HELINA), can be fired from Dhruv advanced light helicopter (ALH) and HAL Rudra (ALH WSI) attack helicopter.
The Nag missile was indigenously developed under the Indian Ministry of Defence’s integrated guided missile development programme (IGMDP), which also involved the development of four other missiles that are Agni, Akash, Trishul and Prithvi.
Bharat Dynamics (BDL) produced imaging infrared seekers for the weapon.
The first test of Nag was conducted in November 1990. A test launch of the missile from a tube in programmed control mode was performed at the Interim Test Range, Balasore, Odisha in September 2001.
Two Nag missiles were successfully test fired in June 2002.
User trials of the Nag anti-tank missile against static and moving targets were conducted in 2007 and 2008 respectively, while the development tests were concluded in August 2008.
Seeker evaluation tests for the missile were conducted at the Pokhran Test Range in Rajasthan in July 2013. Tests on the HELINA were carried out at the Chandan Firing Range in Rajasthan in July 2015.
A Nag weapon with a modified seeker successfully destroyed a thermal target system (TTS) at a range of 4km during test firing conducted in the Mahajan Field Firing Range, Rajasthan, in January 2016.
The anti-tank missile took part in the Bahrain International Airshow in Bahrain in January 2016. It will undergo final user trials under different weather conditions in 2016.
Nag anti-tank guided missile design and features
The Nag anti-armour guided weapon’s airframe is built with lightweight and high-strength composite materials. The missile features top-attack capability and has high immunity to countermeasures.
The missile is equipped with four foldable wings and has a length of 1.85m, diameter of 0.20m, wing span of 0.4m and weight of 43kg.
A blunt nose cone houses the guidance system, while the middle portion accommodates a compact sensor package and the main charge of the warhead. A booster rocket motor is located towards the rear. Four tail fins are fitted at the rear to stabilise the missile while in flight.
A real-time image processor with fast and efficient algorithms is installed next to the guidance section to provide automatic target detection and tracking capabilities. The digital autopilot offers guidance, stability and control for the missile during the flight.
Nag is also outfitted with an electric actuation system for flight control.
Guidance and warhead
A passive imaging infrared (IIR) homing seeker guides the missile to the target after its launch in all lighting conditions. The missile can be optionally offered with a millimetre wave active radar seeker.
The Namica variant has lock-on-before launch capability, while the air-launched configuration uses lock-on after launch technology.
An 8kg tandem-shaped charge high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT) warhead, with a precursor and a main charge, provides the weapon with a high kill probability.
The precursor charge penetrates the explosive reactive armour (ERA) of the tanks and the main charge is intended to destroy the main armour.
Propulsion and performance of Nag guided weapon
The Nag anti-armour guided missile is fitted a with high-energy propulsion system consisting of booster and sustainer propellants. The sustainer propellant burns a nitramine smokeless extruded double base (EDB).
The weapon can fly at a speed of 230m/s and has the capability to engage both static and moving targets under all weather conditions during the day and at night. The range of the land version is 4km, while HELINA can reach up to 7km.
Up to eight ready-to-fire missiles can be carried in two quadruple armoured box launchers mounted on the NAMICA anti-tank guided missile.
Each launcher can fire four missiles in one minute. The NAMICA vehicle can be optionally equipped with an additional four missiles.
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«The Indian Army intends to procure up to 8,000 Nags, although it most likely will place an initial order for only 500 ATGM systems»
«the Indian Army has a requirement for around 68,000 anti-ATGMs of various types and over 850 launchers»
«Nag has been developed at a cost of ₹3 billion (US$45.9 million)»
«The cost of third-generation ATGWs runs to thousands of dollars, so ATGWs are generally bolstered by cheaper anti-armour rocket launchers such as the RPG-7»
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Gli indiani hanno dimostrato negli ultimi anni una spiccata attitudine a riuscire a progettare e costruire armi efficienti a costi davvero bassi.
Questo è un aspetto spesso poco valutato nei commenti e nei report.
Se è vero che un carro armato ha un grande volume di fuoco e contro la fanteria sembrerebbe essere quasi invulnerabile, se è altrettanto vero che tutti i moderni carri armati sono dotati di efficienti sistemi di difesa, è altrettanto vero che il costo di un missile tipo Javelin è molto elevato. A questo ultimo si richiede quindi una ben maggiore capacità distruttiva, ma anche esso non è infallibile.
Un altro aspetto da valutarsi è che al momento, per nostra grande fortuna, questi sistemi di arma sono stati testati contro eserciti fatiscenti, dotati di carri armati obsoleti.
Ma una cosa è entrare in azione contro l’esercito di Saddam Hussein, ed una totalmente differente è confrontarsi con un esercito equipollente per armamento ed addestramento.
An indigenously designed and developed anti-tank guided missile was successfully tested on February 28.
India’s Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) successfully tested its indigenously designed and developed third-generation anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) Nag in desert conditions against two tank targets on February 28, according to an Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) press release.
The tests “have once again proved its capability,” the statement reads. “With this, the developmental trials of the missile have been completed and it is now ready for induction.” The Indian Army has so far not publicly commented on the successful Nag ATGM test. Notably, DRDO had announced the completion of development trials already in September 2017.
Indian Army officials have repeatedly stated that they expect development trials to be concluded by the end of 2018. The Army has delayed the induction of the Nag, a fire-and-forget ATGM with an estimated range of 4 kilometers, due to numerous technical shortcomings including inadequate thermal sensors. The missile’s high price tag has also been a point of controversy.
The Nag ATGM, manufactured by India’s sole missile producer, state-owned Bharat Dynamics Limited, until the recent test had only been fired from an armored combat vehicle specifically designed for that purpose. As I reported in 2017:
The Nag Missile Carrier (NAMICA) is an Indian license-produced variant of the Soviet-era BMP-II armored infantry fighting vehicle. NAMICA can launch Nag missiles from a retractable armored launcher that contains four launch tubes (the armored vehicle can carry up to 12 missiles in total) and the guidance package including a thermal imager for target acquisition. The missile’s targeting system is based on visual identification prior to its launch (‘lock-on-before-launch system’).
DRDO has been working on the Nag ATGM for over a decade. The Indian Army intends to procure up to 8,000 Nags, although it most likely will place an initial order for only 500 ATGM systems. As I reported in January, the Indian Army has a requirement for around 68,000 anti-ATGMs of various types and over 850 launchers.
“The service is reportedly pushing for a fast-track procurement of 2,500 third-generation shoulder-fired ATGMs and 96 launchers through a government-to-government contract,” I noted. “Weapon systems under consideration include the Israeli Spike ATGM and the FGM-148 Javelin ATGM.”
In December 2017, the Indian government scrapped a $500 million deal with Israeli defense contractor Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. for 321 Spike ATGM systems and 8,356 missiles in favor of an indigenous ATGM system currently under development by DRDO.
The cancellation of the deal was allegedly the result of intense lobbying by DRDO, which has vowed to expedite delivery of the Nag ATGM system. The Indian Army originally selected the Spike ATGM over the U.S.-made FGM-148 Javelin ATGM system in October 2014, expecting the Nag ATGM not to be ready for operational deployment for some time.
Nel 2000 il pil indiano era 476.636 miliardi Usd ed a fine 2016 valeva 2,263.792 miliardi: in sedici anni è aumentato di 4.8 volte.
Nel 2017 il Pil indiano sarebbe cresciuto almeno al ritmo del 6%, circa. Il pil ppa procapite ammonta a 7,174 dollari americani.
«Growth accelerated in the quarter ended December to 7.2%, the government said Wednesday. That’s faster than China’s growth over the same period, and a big jump from the 6.5% India recorded the previous quarter.»
«The latest GDP numbers point to a clear strengthening of India’s recovery from a sharp slump in the first half of 2017, when growth fell from 7% to a three-year low of 5.7% after two disruptive policy changes by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.»
«India is expected to further widen the gap over China in 2018, with the International Monetary Fund predicting last month that it will grow by 7.4% this year.»
«Recent efforts to simplify the system mean India will soon “be leaving all those worries behind,”»
«This government has really pushed for major structural reforms, and they should start paying rich dividends in about a year»
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Sullo sviluppo dell’India si potrebbero scrivere trattati. Riprendiamo soltanto due considerazioni.
Il Governo indiano ha intrapreso tutta una lunga serie di riforme strutturali volte a semplificare l’ordinamento e la gestione della cosa pubblica.
I risultati sono sotto gli occhi di tutti: il sistema economico indiano si sta sviluppando ad un ritmo che in Occidente sarebbe impossibile. Si è sviluppato, e prospero, anche durante la crisi economica iniziata nel 2009.
Si verifica ancora una volta, come se poi ce ne fosse stato bisogno, che quando lo stato si semplifica e si rimpicciolisce l’economia ne trae un inaspettato vigore: lo stato, e le sue tasse, sono i nemici primi del benessere di Cittadini.
La seconda considerazione ha un fondo amaro.
Da decenni l’Occidente ha perso quella che una volta era stata la sua grande caratteristica: saper imparare dai fatti, saper imparare dai propri errori.
Il modo di intendere e sviluppare la dottrina economica orientale potrebbe bene essere uno stimolo anche per gli occidentali, se solo sapessero e volessero sottoporre a revisione critica il proprio modus cogitandi et operandi.
Growth accelerated in the quarter ended December to 7.2%, the government said Wednesday. That’s faster than China’s growth over the same period, and a big jump from the 6.5% India recorded the previous quarter.
The latest GDP numbers point to a clear strengthening of India’s recovery from a sharp slump in the first half of 2017, when growth fell from 7% to a three-year low of 5.7% after two disruptive policy changes by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
India is expected to further widen the gap over China in 2018, with the International Monetary Fund predicting last month that it will grow by 7.4% this year.
So far, so good.
“[It’s] clearly a strong pickup,” said Priyanka Kishore, lead Asia economist at Oxford Economics.
“There is still some anecdotal evidence out there of [the tax overhaul] still being a bit of a worry for certain industries, especially the smaller businesses,” Kishore added.
Recent efforts to simplify the system mean India will soon “be leaving all those worries behind,” he said.
Modi’s administration has set its sights even higher.
“This government has really pushed for major structural reforms, and they should start paying rich dividends in about a year,” Amitabh Kant, one of the government’s top policy advisors, told CNN’s John Defterios in an interview earlier this week.
Growth of 10% or more, Kant said, is “very doable.”
Sarebbe impossibile tentare di ottenere un quadro obbiettivo senza aver acquisito tutte le possibili fonti: un po’ come durante un processo si sente l’accusa, sicuramente, ma anche e soprattutto la difesa.
La via della ricerca di cosa possa essere considerato essere vero è lunga, difficile, piena di insidie, e gli errori sono la norma: il problema non è tanto il non fare errori, quanto almeno cercare di non rifare gli stessi.
L’India ha 1,335,250,000 abitanti: di questi il 79.8% sono di religione induista ed il 14.23% sono di religione islamica: i mussulmani sono quindi centonovanta milioni. I mussulmani costituiscono la maggioranza nel Jammu e Kashmir e nelle Laccadive, mentre formano grosse minoranze negli Stati di Uttar Pradesh (30 milioni, circa un quinto della popolazione), Bihar (13 milioni e mezzo, un sesto della popolazione), Bengala Occidentale (un quarto della popolazione), Assam (poco meno di un terzo) e Kerala (un quarto). Jammu e Kashmir sono regioni con grandi tensioni sociali e militari, alimentate anche da interventi stranieri. Come solitamente accade in simili circostanze, tutte le parti contendenti cercano di utilizzare le religioni per i loro fini di bassa bottega.
In India è in corso un movimento legislativo e giurisprudenziale che tende a ridimensionare gli effetti di alcune applicazioni prima tollerate della Sharia in campo matrimoniale.
La antica costumanza del ripudio, divorzio rapido, è stata sanzionata dapprima con leggi e quindi con sentenze di tribunale.
Da una parte si dichiara di voler salvaguardare i diritti delle donne in accordo ad una certa quale corrente di pensiero occidentale, dall’altra di voler criminalizzare gli islamici.
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«These days, a popular joke making the rounds in India is that the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) loves Muslim women, but not Muslim men»
«The joke makes fun of BJP’s attempts to portray its rightwing Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a crusader against religious orthodoxy, seeking to liberate Muslim women from the clutches of patriarchy»
«The BJP started crafting this narrative in August last year, after India’s Supreme Court banned “triple talaq”, or instant divorce, practised by some in the Muslim community»
«Four months after the Supreme Court decision, India’s BJP-controlled lower house of parliament passed a bill that seeks to criminalise the practice»
«If the bill is voted into law, men found guilty of divorcing their wives through “triple talaq” could face jail time of up to three years»
* * * * * * *
«The governing party believes it will deter men from resorting to the practice, and credits Modi for having the “courage” to reform Muslim personal law and challenge patriarchy»
«But it was easy for many Indian Muslims to see the hypocrisy in this claim»
«the contents of the bill led many to believe that it was put together not to help Muslim women, but further criminalise Muslim men – it allows anyone, not only the wife, to lodge a complaint, and requires the husband to pay maintenance to his wife even while he is imprisoned»
«throughout his tenure as India’s prime minister, Modi has done nothing to challenge patriarchal practices affecting Hindu (and other) women»
«His party has opposed, for example, the criminalisation of marital rape, which according to BJP functionaries, “cannot be suitably applied in the Indian context”.»
* * * * * * *
Dovrebbero essere abbastanza chiari alcuni elementi.
– In India è in corso una lotta aspra tra componente induista, sulla quale l’attuale governo poggia la sua base elettorale, e quella mussulmana, in gran parte avversa al governo Modi.
– Tutta una lunga serie di assunti al momento in gran voga in Occidente sono alieni alla mentalità indiana: “cannot be suitably applied in the Indian context“. Tuttavia nulla vieta di utilizzarli in parte, secondo convenienza.
Questi fatti dovrebbero indurci ad una considerazione generale che trascende i fatti riportati.
Bene o male, piaccia o non piaccia, ogni popolo ha un suo retaggio religioso, storico, culturale che lo caratterizza anche quando non sia formalmente espresso ed anche quando esso sia formalmente ed attivamente contrastato.
Le azioni fatte in questo settore costituiscono invariabilmente azioni alle quali seguono controreazioni eguali e contrarie. Non sempre la reazione è temporalmente immediata: spesso anzi si slatentizza dopo un certo quale tempo, ma nessun statista dovrebbe mai ignorare questo fenomeno.
Non sono rinvenibili nella storia statisti che non abbiano recepito ed onorato le tradizioni popolari.
Casi da manuale sono il comportamento dei romani, che inglobavano intere provincie in un impero che accentrava politica estera, difesa e, parzialmente, le finanze, oppure l’impero cinese, che aveva adottato eguale comportamento. Né romani né cinesi si sognarono mai di imporre la propria religione. Sono imperi durati migliaia di anni. Una lezione storica che non dovrebbe essere dimenticata.
«Back in the 1950s, Hindu personal laws were reformed by the central government, but those of Muslims were left untouched. The Congress party – heading the government at that time – took this decision because, following the bloody partition riots of 1947, it did not want to appear to be interfering in the religious practices of India’s minorities»
These days, a popular joke making the rounds in India is that the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) loves Muslim women, but not Muslim men.
The joke makes fun of BJP’s attempts to portray its rightwing Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a crusader against religious orthodoxy, seeking to liberate Muslim women from the clutches of patriarchy.
The BJP started crafting this narrative in August last year, after India’s Supreme Court banned “triple talaq”, or instant divorce, practised by some in the Muslim community. Four months after the Supreme Court decision, India’s BJP-controlled lower house of parliament passed a bill that seeks to criminalise the practice. If the bill is voted into law, men found guilty of divorcing their wives through “triple talaq” could face jail time of up to three years.
The governing party believes it will deter men from resorting to the practice, and credits Modi for having the “courage” to reform Muslim personal law and challenge patriarchy.
But it was easy for many Indian Muslims to see the hypocrisy in this claim.
First of all, the bill was, at least in part, the result of decades of campaigning by Muslim women’s groups and victims against the practice. Also, the contents of the bill led many to believe that it was put together not to help Muslim women, but further criminalise Muslim men – it allows anyone, not only the wife, to lodge a complaint, and requires the husband to pay maintenance to his wife even while he is imprisoned.
Second, throughout his tenure as India’s prime minister, Modi has done nothing to challenge patriarchal practices affecting Hindu (and other) women. His party has opposed, for example, the criminalisation of marital rape, which according to BJP functionaries, “cannot be suitably applied in the Indian context”.
Modi is yet to speak out in defence of Hindu women dragged into the “love jihad” frenzy within some Hindu communities.
Hindu groups allege that “love jihad” is a conspiracy by Muslim men to lure Hindu women into marriages with Muslims, with the sole aim of converting them to Islam. Occasionally, they claim that radical Muslim groups are behind “love jihad”.
Late in December last year, in the city of Ghaziabad, near New Delhi, Hindu activists clashed with police while protesting the marriage of a Muslim man and a Hindu woman, which they claimed was an act of “love jihad”.
The bride’s family insisted that the marriage was consensual, but BJP officials claimed that the families had not received “permission” to hold an inter-religious marriage, and it was a case of “forced conversion”. The bride hadn’t converted to Islam before the marriage, but they did not seem to care.
Even if she did, the couple did not need to ask for anyone’s permission to get married, as the Indian constitution allows the country’s citizens to convert to another religion. They were married under the Special Marriage Act, under which inter-faith couples can marry without converting. But this does not deter Hindu fundamentalists from targeting inter-faith couples and harassing – even violently attacking – any Muslim man who enters into a relationship with a Hindu woman.
Also in December, this time in Rajasamand, Rajasthan, 36-year-old Shambhulal Regar hacked a 50-year old Muslim man named Afrazul and burned his body for allegedly attempting to commit “love jihad”. Regar claimed he killed Afrazul “to save a Hindu woman from becoming a victim of “love jihad”. The police later discovered that Regar mistook Afrazul for another Muslim man, who allegedly had an affair with the woman.
The campaign against “love jihad” continues to get more brutal with each passing day. In January, three Muslim brothers were beaten at a court in Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh – simply because one of them wanted to marry a Hindu woman. The assailants belonged to the Vishva Hindu Parishad, an affiliate of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the parent body of the BJP.
According to RSS-supported Hindu fundamentalists, a Muslim man’s love for a Hindu girl cannot be real. It has to be fake. It has to be an attempt to convert an innocent girl to Islam, recruit her for a “terror” group, or even transform India into a Muslim country.
These claims, and Prime Minister Modi’s telling silence on the issue, are fanning paranoia about Muslims in India. This paranoia is also hurting, and even killing, Hindu women that the proponents of the “love jihad” myth are allegedly trying to protect.
Targeting Hindu women
Earlier this month, in the southwestern state of Karnataka, a 20-year-old Hindu woman named Dhanyashree was driven to suicide by Hindu fundamentalists over a single photograph.
Her WhatsApp profile photograph was closely cropped with only her eyes showing against a black background. It created the illusion that she was wearing a veil. Members of the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha, BJP’s youth wing, demanded that she remove the photograph.
She was harassed and rumours were started that she was in a relationship with a Muslim boy. Unable to bear it, she committed suicide.
BJP officials, rather than seeking justice for Dhanyashree – as they allegedly do for Muslim victims of triple talaq – chose to defend the men who precipitated her suicide.
A BJP leader from Chikmagalur, C T Ravi, told Indian media, “What has happened in the Dhanyashree case is unfortunate. A worker of the BJP, Anil, has been arrested for it. But he has not done anything criminal; he has not committed any murder. He was just trying to inform the girl’s family about the dangers of Love Jihad, which has claimed so many Hindu girls. His intention was not to provoke her to suicide.”
Dhanyashree is not the only woman victim of India’s “love jihad” insanity. Across India, many other Hindu women are being victimised for their relationships with Muslim men.
The alleged ISIL connection
In August last year, Akhila, a Hindu girl from Kerala, who shared a flat with two Muslim sisters, converted to Islam, changed her name to Hadiya and married a Muslim man.
The Kerala high court nullified the marriage, after the woman’s father filed a petition alleging that his daughter converted to Islam as part of a plan to send her to Syria, to join the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS).
The high court said the girl was “weak and vulnerable” and susceptible to exploitation, and that “marriage being the most important decision in her life, can also be taken only with the active involvement of her parents”. She was ordered to return to live with her parents.
Hadiya’s husband went in appeal to the Supreme Court, which ordered the National Investigation Agency (NIA), a federal counter-terror outfit, to probe inter-faith marriages, including hers. Subsequently, a three-member bench of Supreme Court summoned Hadiya and inquired what she wanted. Hadiya replied, “I want to go with my husband. Nobody forced me to convert.” She also expressed apprehensions that her parents wouldn’t allow her to continue with her studies. The Supreme Court allowed Hadiya to return to her college.
On January 23, the three-member bench further refined its position to say it could do little even if Hadiya had been “brainwashed”. It added, “Whether it’s an independent choice or not, only she knows. We can’t get into it. If she comes to court and says she married by choice, that’s the end of it.”
However, the NIA is to continue probing all other aspects of “love jihad” and is said to be probing 90 inter-faith marriages involving Muslims in Kerala.
Kerala has been in the eye of controversy since 2016, when a 21-member group, including a few recent converts, left their respective hometowns to join ISIL. Hindu right-wing groups have been using this incident as a tool to criminalise all inter-faith marriages and infantilise any Hindu women who appear to have relations with Muslim men, by claiming that these women have been “tricked” or “brainwashed”.
Women’s rights promotion as a facade
The BJP and Modi’s liberal line on Muslim women’s rights is nothing but a salve for a grievance that they have nursed and publicised, for their own interests, for decades.
Back in the 1950s, Hindu personal laws were reformed by the central government, but those of Muslims were left untouched. The Congress party – heading the government at that time – took this decision because, following the bloody partition riots of 1947, it did not want to appear to be interfering in the religious practices of India’s minorities.
But Hindu groups claimed that the Congress refused to reform Muslim personal laws in order to garner Muslim votes. This made Hindus feel discriminated against, in a country where they are the majority. Today, for many Hindus, the criminalisation of triple talaq is a step towards righting this historical wrong. And Modi is now using this historical grievance to increase the support he has among India’s Hindus.
The prime minister knows that India’s Muslims did not vote for him in the past and they are not likely to vote for him in the future. All he is trying to do is to make his base – Hindu nationalists – happy. It has nothing to do with his respect for Muslim women or women’s rights.
«Report sees India overtaking both U.K., France next year»
«The growing importance of Asia’s major economies will continue in 2018 and beyond, according to a league table that sees the region dominating in terms of size in just over a decade»
«The report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research in London sees India leapfrogging the U.K. and France next year to become the world’s fifth-biggest economy in dollar terms. It will advance to third place by 2027, moving ahead of Germany»
«Also by 2032, South Korea and Indonesia will have entered the top 10, supplanting the Group of Seven nations of Italy and Canada»
«China will also have overtaken the U.S. to hold the No. 1 spot.»
«Also by 2032, South Korea and Indonesia will have entered the top 10, supplanting the Group of Seven nations of Italy and Canada»
«Shanghai will replace Paris in the top five of global city economies by 2035»
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L’Occidente sta tramontando culturalmente, politicamente ed economicamente.
Si faccia attenzione!
Al momento attuale, a tutt’oggi, l’Occidente è ancora forte ed economicamente rilevante. Ma è in declino.
Per meglio spiegarci, pensate al luglio 1943
Le truppe tedesche occupavano gran parte della Russia europea. Ma i tedeschi avevano perso ad El-Alamein, a Stalingrado ed, infine, a Kursk erano state annientate quasi tutte le loro forze corazzate.
Se era evidente che avevano perso la guerra, ci vollero altri due anni di lacrime esangue per arrivarne a compimento.
Mutatis mutandis, la situazione attuale.
In occidente la classe politica latita: in Germania non riescono nemmeno a fare uno straccetto di governo, così, tanto per mandare qualcuno a tagliare i nastri.
Si faccia buona cura a non imitare i tedeschi che hanno capito di aver perso la guerra quando i russi hanno parcheggiato i loro carri armati sulla verticale del bunker della cancelleria: in quel momento non ci sarà più nulla da fare.
– CEBR publishes World Economic League Table and predictions
– Report sees India overtaking both U.K., France next year
The growing importance of Asia’s major economies will continue in 2018 and beyond, according to a league table that sees the region dominating in terms of size in just over a decade.
The report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research in London sees India leapfrogging the U.K. and France next year to become the world’s fifth-biggest economy in dollar terms. It will advance to third place by 2027, moving ahead of Germany.
In 2032, three of the four largest economies will be Asian — China, India and Japan — and, by that time, China will also have overtaken the U.S. to hold the No. 1 spot. India’s advance won’t stop there, according to the CEBR, which sees it taking the top place in the second half of the century.
Also by 2032, South Korea and Indonesia will have entered the top 10, supplanting the Group of Seven nations of Italy and Canada.
Shanghai will replace Paris in the top five of global city economies by 2035 in a sign the balance of the world’s economy is shifting east, according to an Oxford Economics study.
The top 780 cities in the world, which already produce almost 60 percent of global activity, will add almost half a billion more people and $32 trillion in output over roughly the next couple of decades, Mark Britton, an economist at Oxford Economics, writes in a research note published this week.
The eye-popping headline figures mask significant disparities between cities studied, Britton wrote. Among the big winners: emerging Asia, with three other Chinese cities entering into the top 10: Beijing, Guangzhou, and Tianjin.
“The world’s urban center will continue to shift eastwards, particularly as growth in a number of cities in the West is likely to be constrained by aging, and in some cases, declining, population,” Britton wrote.
The changing power balance is shown by the forecast that the combined output of Asian cities will overtake that of urban centers in Europe and North America in about a decade, according to Britton. A decade ago, the cities in the West claimed twice the aggregate GDP of those in Asia.
Non-Chinese Asian cities will also post impressive growth, with places like Mumbai and Kuala Lumpur adding $4.7 trillion in GDP through 2035. But China’s urban star power will increase by about $14 trillion over that period, and 15 of its cities will join the top-100 rankings, on top of 18 already on the list.
The estimates are based on constant 2015 prices and exchange rates.
Two cities in Latin America – Santiago and Rio de Janeiro – will drop out of the top-100 rankings, and while the Middle East looks to be making gradual improvement, cities there could get a boost if development plans like Saudi Arabia’s are implemented. There will be rapid urbanization in African nations, but it will take time for that to translate into big economic gains, Britton estimates.
That challenge for policy makers – leveraging their populations to spur the economy – could make or break some of these cities, Britton warned.
“Rapid population growth in emerging cities requires considerable management to ensure the infrastructure can accommodate the additional people,” he wrote. “This includes the provision of adequate housing, support services and transport networks, whilst also developing and maintaining the city as an attractive place to live and work.”