Daily Archive: November 6, 2019

The RCEP Train Left the Station, and India, Behind

A pan-Asia high-speed train has left the station – and India – behind. The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which would have been the largest free trade deal in the world, was not signed in Bangkok. It will probably be signed next year in Vietnam, assuming New Delhi goes beyond what ASEAN, with diplomatic finesse barely concealing frustration, described as “outstanding...

Russia Is Skeptical Of the US’ ‘Indo-Pacific’ Concept

The interview that Russian Prime Minister Medevedev gave to the Bangkok Post during his recent visit to Thailand to attend the ASEAN Summit there served to remind everyone of Russia’s skepticism towards the US’ “Indo-Pacific” concept, which he believes reduces the bloc’s centrality in regional affairs and also unnecessarily pressures its members to depart from their historic position of non-alignment,...

Modi’s Assault on Kashmir and the Indian Working Class

5 November 2019 marks exactly three months since Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his henchman Home Minister Amit Shah and a cabal of senior military and intelligence officers mounted a constitutional coup against Jammu and Kashmir. By executive fiat, Modi and his Hindu supremacist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government have stripped India’s only Muslim-majority state of its unique, semi-autonomous constitutional...

Debt Trap? China’s Belt and Road Is More Like a Giant Giveaway for the 3rd World

Critics often claim that China is using its massive Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as a form of coercive “debt-trap diplomacy” to exert control over the countries that join its transnational infrastructure investment scheme. This risk, as Deborah Brautigam of John Hopkins University recently noted, is often exaggerated by the media. In fact, the BRI may hold a different kind...

For-Show Female Empowerment & Gender Fluidity are Simply the Latest Instruments of Corporate Capitalism

Should women unashamedly wear mustaches? Should men abandon their masculinity because it’s ‘toxic’? This is all just a smoke screen capitalist overlords use to hide real issues and stay in power, philosopher Slavoj Zizek believes. In one of the latest anti-objectification messages, women’s razor brand Billie ran an ad timed to Movember (the annual ‘mustache month’ event), proclaiming that “women...