Pakistan and India at 70: Is this a moment to be proud or to mourn lost opportunities?

by Rashmee

Posted on August 16, 2017 / The National


India and Pakistan ran into the 70th birthday blues this week, which is to say a milestone that has none of the excitement or life-changing portentous of a 21st, 50th, 75th or a 100th anniversary. In fact, for a 70th birthday to be significant at all, it should have been achieved in the Mark Twain … Continue reading “Pakistan and India at 70: Is this a moment to be proud or to mourn lost opportunities?”

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A British oath of allegiance? An idea, for sure, but what penalty for breaking it

by Rashmee

Posted on December 20, 2016


Britian’s communities secretary Sajid Javed has suggested an oath of allegiance for public officials, new citizens and even migrants who aren’t seeking citizenship at the time. The core element of the idea – a pledge to uphold British values – comes from a government-commissioned report on social cohesion by a senior official Louise Casey. Though … Continue reading “A British oath of allegiance? An idea, for sure, but what penalty for breaking it”

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US presidential elections go on so long they’re a crying shame. Literally

by Rashmee

Posted on September 2, 2016


A Boston Globe columnist has been reminding Americans why the presidential election is a crying shame. Just days before the 2012 election, wrote Jeff Jacoby, there was that YouTube video of a four-year-old girl crying piteously over the constant stories about “Bronco Bamma and Mitt Romney”. The 21-second video went viral, and was viewed more … Continue reading “US presidential elections go on so long they’re a crying shame. Literally”

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Nationalism is the new normal in global politics

by Rashmee

Posted on September 1, 2016 / The National


A week ago, American presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton spoke at length about a phenomenon she identified as “the rising tide of right-wing nationalism”. Describing it as worldwide, she blamed her Republican Party opponent Donald Trump for bringing the “alt right” (alternative right) out of the shadows with its white nationalist ideas, racism, misogyny and anti-Muslim … Continue reading “Nationalism is the new normal in global politics”

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#Brexit shows the perils of politicians passing the buck to the public

by Rashmee

Posted on June 28, 2016


Could the British parliament make the big decision? Is it required to do so? Yes, according to Dr Jo Murkens, LSE law professor. And others, not least Conservative MP Ken Clarke. But Dr Murkens lays out the clearest case for parliament doing what it’s meant to in a parliamentary democracy. On Monday, she told LBC that British … Continue reading “#Brexit shows the perils of politicians passing the buck to the public”

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#Brexit: Mujahideen gallows humour & Egypt’s Bassem Youssef on empire

by Rashmee

Posted on June 27, 2016


Here’s a post-Brexit message from one radical Islamist to another. Transmitted via Telegram, a cloud-based instant messaging service, the note is funny enough to make anyone almost like these fellows: “The mujahideen will keep their cells in UK separate from EU in respect of #Brexit”. Who would’ve thought that “the mujahideen” would have a sense of humour? It … Continue reading “#Brexit: Mujahideen gallows humour & Egypt’s Bassem Youssef on empire”

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‘Super-Singapore’? The Day Two Brexit story for those who voted ‘Remain’

by Rashmee

Posted on June 25, 2016


Back in February, when Brexit was still a distant absurdity, Markus Kerber, head of the Federation of German Industries, conceded that Britain might become “a super-Singapore at the gates of Europe” within a decade. Could it happen? Every one of us who voted to ‘remain’ in the European Union must desperately hope it can. And … Continue reading “‘Super-Singapore’? The Day Two Brexit story for those who voted ‘Remain’”

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Jo Cox’s murder: Is UK’s gentle egg-throwing culture of dissent dead?

by Rashmee

Posted on June 17, 2016


After the murder of Labour MP Jo Cox at the hands of a man allegedly shouting “Britain First”, I remembered how political disagreement used to be in Britain. Just over 15 years ago – on May 16, 2001 to be precise – this was The Daily Telegraph’s account of public “dissatisfaction” with the governing record … Continue reading “Jo Cox’s murder: Is UK’s gentle egg-throwing culture of dissent dead?”

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Is it really just a short distance from Theresa May to The Sun’s Ally Ross?

by Rashmee

Posted on October 10, 2015


To paraphrase UK prime minister David Cameron, “Britain and ‘The Sun’ are not the same thing”. And ‘Sun’ columnist Ally Ross’s opinion that ‘Great British Bake Off‘ winner Nadiya Hussain benefitted from “political correctness” is not necessarily the way most British people think. In fact, I’d wager that most Britons would be shell-shocked if they … Continue reading “Is it really just a short distance from Theresa May to The Sun’s Ally Ross?”

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Corbynomics & quantitive easing: ‘Twas Pat Moynihan who got there first

by Rashmee

Posted on August 26, 2015


Indians of a certain age (or with excellent memories) will remember Daniel Patrick Moynihan mainly for the years he served as US ambassador to India. He helped with a debt owed by India (some was written off, some used to pay for US embassy expenses, the rest converted into rupees to fund an Indo-US cultural and … Continue reading “Corbynomics & quantitive easing: ‘Twas Pat Moynihan who got there first”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in eight countries in the past decade. She spent much of 2015 in the UAE and currently divides her time between the UK and Tunisia. Before that, she was in Haiti, the US, Afghanistan and India.