September 23rd, 2011
04:33 PM ET

Debate: Is it time to veto the U.N. veto?

By Ishaan Tharoor, TIME

The fitful Palestinian approach to the U.N. Security Council will be, as all have known for a long time, stillborn. The near certainty of a U.S. veto in defense of Israeli interests has made the Palestinian gambit for statehood recognition more about ritual symbolism than any real process. This when, according to a BBC poll, the majority of global public opinion is firmly behind recognizing a separate, sovereign Palestinian state. The U.S. veto, wielded in opposition to a generally-held international consensus, is then perhaps the most unilateral gesture one can make at the world's most multilateral institution.

Why in the 21st century should anybody still have the right to do this? FULL POST

August 3rd, 2011
02:15 PM ET

Why did Pakistan's spy chief make a secret trip to China?

By Ishaan Tharoor, Global Spin

Reports reveal Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, head of Pakistan's main military intelligence agency, the ISI, flew on a secret mission to Beijing for urgent talks this Monday. The visit followed swiftly on the heels of yet another round of diplomatic squabbling between Washington and Islamabad.

During a heated summer of disputes, tensions between the ISI and the CIA flared most recently over the alleged Pakistani harassment of American officials stationed in the country. Pasha's China trip has been interpreted by some as a tacit act of defiance — a reminder to his American counterparts that the Pakistanis can always look east to their “all-weather” friend across the Himalayas rather than bend the knee to the will of the U.S. FULL POST

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Topics: China • Pakistan
Report: The Global War on Drugs has failed: Is it time to legalize?
June 2nd, 2011
02:14 PM ET

Report: The Global War on Drugs has failed: Is it time to legalize?

By Ishaan Tharoor, TIME

The global war against drugs is fought seemingly every day in the jungles of Colombia and the mountains of the Hindu Kush, the inner cities of the U.S. and the trafficking corridors of Central America. But, according to a new report, it's an abject disaster.

The Global Commission on Drug Policy, an organization launched by former Presidents of Brazil, Colombia and Mexico (and whose accomplished 19-member board includes former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, Pakistani feminist activist Asma Jehangir, and, yes, Sir Richard Branson), declared today that the "global war on drugs has failed, with devastating consequences for individuals and societies around the world." FULL POST

April 28th, 2011
10:07 AM ET

5 reasons to hate the royal wedding

My colleague over at TIME's Global Spin blog, Ishaan Tharoor, lays out five convincing reasons to hate the royal wedding:

Now's not the time to celebrate a monarchy. To cover this day-long farce, many news organizations will divert their attention and resources away from reporting the world's real news: that is, the struggle against entrenched authoritarian regimes (including a handful of real monarchies) in the Arab world where virtually every Friday has seen a "Day of Rage" and civilian casualties.

Yet the networks in the West that have championed — even, at times, with a degree of condescension — those youth fighting for democracy in the Middle East, will now turn and fawn over a barnacled, anachronistic institution that for centuries professed it had a God-given right to rule over its subjects.


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Topics: Culture • Europe • Global
March 21st, 2011
03:49 PM ET

Couch Potato Briefing: Rental movies to bring you up to speed on this week's events

By Tony Karon and Ishaan Tharoor,

Every week, brings us several movies that give you a better sense of the week's news. This week's "Couch Potato Briefing" captures these dark and gloomy days.