OUR INAUGURAL ISSUE FEATURES THREE RESEARCH ARTICLES, several editorial articles and book reviews, and a conference report. In the Research Articles’ section, Jayanta Kumar Ray examines the ways in which American and Indian foreign policy persuades Pakistan to stop cross-border terrorism. Harish C. Mehta reinterprets the Fall of Singapore in 1942, on its 75th anniversary, in light of the new historical literature that requires a re-examination of the topic. John Ranjan Mukherjee explains that the Indian government must bring peace to India’s North East by meeting the aspirations of the region’s people, and by taking steps to avoid a conflagration that may be in the offing, particularly in Assam, Nagaland and Manipur.
In the Editorial Articles’ section, Ashok Sajjanhar looks beyond the India-China standoff in Doka La, and wonders if the Asian Century may be in jeopardy. In a second article, on the 70th anniversary of India’s diplomatic relations with Thailand, Sajjanhar discusses the convergence of India’s “Act East” and Thailand’s “Look West” policies. Anirban Lahiri, based in Ho Chi Minh City, explains how Vietnam has cemented its place in the Asian Century. John Ranjan Mukherjee looks at the Naga Peace Accord and its adverse effects in Manipur. We feature two articles on the Kashmir question, with Surendra Munshi suggesting new ways of approaching the Kashmir issue by changing attitudes and mindscapes, and Tej K. Tikoo recommending giving peace a chance in Kashmir while giving no quarter to terrorism.
Among the Book Reviews, Pradip K. Chatterjee reviews The South China Sea Disputes: Flashpoints, Turning Points and Trajectories, explaining that China’s “peaceful” rise is threatening the small states of Southeast Asia. John Ranjan Mukherjee reviews Toh Han Shih’s Is China an Empire, arguing that Chinese empire-building draws upon historical precedents of the creation of empire by Britain and America. In an accompanying article, Mukherjee reviews Jayanta Kumar Ray’s Cross-Border Terrorism: Focus on Pakistan, exploring the mechanics of Pakistan’s creation of and support to terrorist groups.
In a report on a recent conference on Mizoram as a Gateway to Southeast Asia, organised by this journal’s parent, the Research Centre for Eastern and North Eastern Regional Studies, Kolkata (CENERS-K), the participants collectively recommended that India’s “Look East Policy” had not benefited the North East Region of India. The new policy to “Act East” would only succeed if the north eastern states worked out their own local solutions towards development, ensuring peoples’ ownership and active participation.
The journal welcomes articles on Asia in general, on India (as well as India’s northeast), and India’s role in world affairs; South Asia, Southeast Asia, East Asia (Japan, the Koreas, Taiwan, and China); and the policy towards Asia pursued by the United States, Russia and the West, as well as West Asia, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. The journal’s focus is on diplomacy, conduct of foreign policy, international relations, soft power (use of film and the arts as tools of diplomacy), diplomatic history, war and peace, defense issues, geo-strategy, national and global economic issues, peace studies, informal diplomacy and Track 2 diplomacy, revolution and counterrevolution, terrorism and counterterrorism, colonialism and decolonisation, and hegemony and resistance. The journal carries articles on contemporary world affairs, and major events and policies of the 20th Century that are still shaping the world today and are being revisited in light of new historical material that is declassified and becomes available from time to time.