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July, 29, 2016

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Commentary
Are code names necessary? Oh yes, they are necessary for the military. General Dwight D. Eisenhower dubbed his Normandy invasion "Operation Overlord" during WWII.
 
Bangladesh has been hit by a surge in Islamist attacks in the past three years that reached new heights last weekend when 20 hostages were murdered in Dhaka.
 
Britain's vote to leave the European Union and simmering discontent in other Western countries is seen as hastening the arrival of an "Asian Century," analysts say, led by the rise of China and India.
 
The European Union is already operating at several different speeds, even before Britain's vote to leave raised new questions about whether the bloc should be more integrated or give more power back to its member countries.
 
There is grave concern that the world economy is slipping into what Harvard professor and former U.S. Treasury Secretary Larry Summers calls global secular deflation. In simple terms, growth has slowed without inflation, despite exceptionally stimulative monetary policy. Summer's view is that advanced countries can use fiscal policy to stimulate growth, using massive investments in infrastructure. If need be, this can be financed by central banks.
 
I've never had the opportunity to meet journalist Frank Ching, but if I ever get that privilege, I'd like to shake his hand and thank him for his fine work.
 
"Someone to talk to" is how McGeorge Bundy, national security adviser to U.S. President John F. Kennedy, summed up the special relationship between Great Britain and the United States, dating from the darkest period of World War II. The same term can be applied to Canada, and increasingly Mexico as well.
 
Whatever you say about Pakistan's foreign policy and its de jure head, Sartaj Aziz, you will have to concede both are pretty consistent, and if this consistency of thought and policy comes at unimaginable cost to the nation so be it.
 
Upholding an author's right to write unhindered under the freedom of speech enshrined in Article 19 (1) (a) of the Indian Constitution, the First Bench of the Madras High Court comprising Chief Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice Pushpa Sathyanarayana said that the Tamil Nadu government's attempt to gag Perumal Murugan, undoubtedly one of the top fiction writers in India, was akin to the work of kangaroo courts, and quashed criminal cases against him.
 
This week and in the midst of news of far greater momentum from around Asia, India is being asked to focus its energies on the latest instalment of a long-running soap opera that ought either to have ended or been taken off the air a few years ago.
 
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