A PUBLICATION OF THE RESEARCH CENTRE FOR EASTERN AND
NORTH EASTERN REGIONAL STUDIES, KOLKATA

A University Grants Commission Approved Journal
(under UGC-CARE, Arts & Humanities Citation Index)
ISSN 2582-2241

  • Volume 4, Issue 1 (January 2020)
FIRST PAGES
RESEARCH ARTICLES
Cool Texts, Cold Wars: Singapore And Tibet In Historical Fiction Of Small States
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Abstract

This article explores the very real dilemmas of small states during the Cold War through the prism of a fictionalised schematic. It, first, deals with an extraordinary effort by the United States to purchase Singapore during a neo-Cold War rivalry between the United States and China in the novelist Lee Chiu-San’s Buy My Beloved Country (Ethos, 2014). And second, it locates another Cold War over Tibet between those two major powers in Kaushik Barua’s Windhorse (HarperCollins, 2013). The article draws attention to the neutral position taken by neighbouring small states when a crisis affects a weaker nation. In Buy My Beloved Country, a relatively small country like Malaysia does not offer to help Singapore, preferring to keep itself outside the play of the superpowers. The same neutrality is found in Windhorse, where an emerging powerful nation, India, and the neighbouring small nations, Nepal and Bhutan, remain neutral and do not actively participate in the Tibetan resistance movement.

The Cambodian Experience Of Demining After The Civil War – 2
The Formidable Challenge Of Funding Till 2025

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Abstract

In the second part of his comprehensive study, Leng Sochea explains that Cambodia has benefited greatly from significant financial contributions from the international community to fund demining activities since 1992. The overwhelming majority of mine action funding has been directed towards mine clearance, but large contributions have also been made to mine risk education (MRE), and research and development. While Cambodia remains a developing country with great pressure on its national budget to finance a wide range of different needs, in recent years the Royal Government of Cambodia has managed to increase the allocation of funds for mine action. The author analyses the goals and challenges confronting the National Mine Action Strategy 2017-2025 that targets the elimination, as far as possible, of the threat to human and animal life posed by landmines and other ordnance. The demining programme ends in 2025 and domestic agencies are expected to handle any remaining threats thereafter.

Viewpoint A Two-front “War”against Transnational Terror: Foreign Fighters And Domestic Critics
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Abstract

The author argues that the Indian government’s effort to combat terrorism has turned into a two-front battle. It must fight foreign-trained and armed terrorists, as well as combat a relentless barrage of criticism at home from Indian Opposition parties that view it as an opportunity to settle political scores. The cross-border attack by the Indian Air Force on terrorist camps in Pakistan demonstrates a new resolve to deal firmly with terrorism. Yet, the author points out weaknesses of military preparedness and legal deficiencies that need to be properly addressed.

The Domestication Of Foreign Affairs:
How India’s Internal Regional Politics Intervenes In Foreign Policy

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Abstract

The last two decades have seen growing assertiveness of regional parties in India’s national politics with the result that electoral politics has affected the creation of a robust foreign policy. This paper explores the linkages between foreign policy and domestic politics and its implications for Indian foreign policy. There are strong domestic influences on foreign policymaking in India’s relations with Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and in the foreign policy dimensions of Kashmir. Above all, there exists an ‘elite discord’: there are significant differences of opinion between the national and regional political parties on issues of foreign policy. There is also a lack of synchronisation of foreign policy goals and domestic interests, particularly regional interests. The politics of regional appeasement and communitarian appeasement have become a norm in Indian politics, which has hurt the robustness of the country’s foreign policy.

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