The commodification of global military protection could be cataclysmic

by Rashmee

Posted on July 11, 2018 / The National


With Nato leaders’ annual meeting to be followed by a US-Russia presidential summit, the business of international security is increasingly on people’s minds. Is protection about to become a sunshine commercial sector now that Donald Trump increasingly seems to suggest America’s traditional security alliances be repaid in kind and that the US receive trade preferences … Continue reading “The commodification of global military protection could be cataclysmic”

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Minding the gap: Illiberal India and the age of unreason

by Rashmee

Posted on June 28, 2018


I missed my tube stop just the other day and have to lay the blame where it should fall: on “Illiberal India”. Actually, the blame goes to ‘Illiberal India: Gauri Lankesh and the Age of Unreason’ by Chidanand Rajghatta. The book is by someone I am proud to call a friend, and it is about … Continue reading “Minding the gap: Illiberal India and the age of unreason”

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Trump-Kim summit can set off nuclear dominoes game

by Rashmee

Posted on June 17, 2018 / The Arab Weekly


Ten years ago, in the closing months of George W. Bush’s presidency, the United States legitimised India’s status as a nuclear weapons state. Washington bent the rules and signed an agreement that allowed India to buy US dual-use nuclear technology, including materials and equipment that could be used for nuclear bombs. India (like Pakistan, Israel … Continue reading “Trump-Kim summit can set off nuclear dominoes game”

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It’s not the West versus the Rest any more

by Rashmee

Posted on June 9, 2018


In mid-April, former Swedish prime minister Carl Bildt made a remarkable diagnosis of the global body politic: The West is facing a crisis of confidence but it has to recover its spirits and its moral compass. Those weren’t Mr Bildt’s words exactly, but that was his meaning. He is spot on, except that I’m not … Continue reading “It’s not the West versus the Rest any more”

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How 48 hours in Karnataka showed just how far India has strayed from political norms

by Rashmee

Posted on May 23, 2018 / The National


Those who cry foul at Sunday’s presidential election in Venezuela might pause to consider the state of affairs in India, the world’s largest democracy. Seemingly, all is functioning as it should, elections at various levels are held on schedule and politicians have to demonstrably labour to please voters. But the shenanigans after a recent state … Continue reading “How 48 hours in Karnataka showed just how far India has strayed from political norms”

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US primary election candidates are wearing their criminal convictions as a badge of political honour, not shame

by Rashmee

Posted on May 8, 2018 / The National


The US primary election season begins in earnest today and all eyes will be on West Virginia, where a remarkable political contest is underway. Some say it is a battle for America’s soul. Discount the hyperbole and the West Virginia primary is still extraordinary. A convicted former coal baron is in a three-way contest to … Continue reading “US primary election candidates are wearing their criminal convictions as a badge of political honour, not shame”

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Pakistan has a new self-confidence, and it has Chinese characteristics

by Rashmee

Posted on May 7, 2018


What’s happening with Pakistan five months into a year that began with Donald Trump’s first tweet of 2018 accusing the country of “lies and deceit”? Well, just days ago, Pakistan opened a shiny new international airport and advertised it as a sign of pleasantly evolving prospects. Pakistan continues – stubbornly and successfully – to resist … Continue reading “Pakistan has a new self-confidence, and it has Chinese characteristics”

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‘Saudi First’ is changing the contours of West Asia

by Rashmee

Posted on April 23, 2018 / Hindustan Times


Can nationalism ever be a good thing? It depends. The lack of response by Arab states to the Israeli military’s recent attack on Palestinian protestors illustrates the regional changes that have come with a ‘Saudi First’ nationalist philosophy. Even though it was the worst violence in Gaza since the 2014 war between Hamas and Israel, … Continue reading “‘Saudi First’ is changing the contours of West Asia”

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What did Mark Zuckerberg know about Turkey’s elections and when did he know it?

by Rashmee

Posted on April 19, 2018


On Thursday, April 19 President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey suddenly announced that presidential and parliamentary elections would be held on June 24. That’s more than a year early. The elections had been expected in November 2019. Almost no one would have predicted elections in Turkey this year. Except for Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg. In … Continue reading “What did Mark Zuckerberg know about Turkey’s elections and when did he know it?”

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The case of an eight-year-old rape victim says justice in India is meted out according to religion and class

by Rashmee

Posted on April 17, 2018 / The National


A brutal rape. National outrage. Repeat. The usual way it goes in India, some might say. Except that it hasn’t really happened that way this time round, with the gang rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kashmir. The reaction has been delayed, patchy and polarising. Politicians, lawyers and sections of the public have … Continue reading “The case of an eight-year-old rape victim says justice in India is meted out according to religion and class”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, UK and US