Agha Hussain

Agha Hussain

The writer is a geopolitical analyst and an independent editorial contributor on Middle Eastern Affairs and Pakistan's Foreign Policy.

The problem with Iran’s statement on Delhi’s anti-Muslim violence

At the expense of sounding morbid, one can say India’s state-abetted anti-Muslim pogrom in New Delhi earlier this month presented an opportunity for Iran. In the context of downward trends in Indo-Iran ties in recent times, the potential for Iran to establish its credentials as a Muslim power in South and West Asia through a strong stance on India’s brazen anti-Muslim policies has risen considerably. However, Ayatollah Khamenei’s recent statement on the Delhi pogroms failed to build upon strong rhetoric from Iranian state clerics last August when India annexed occupied Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). It, in fact, has harmed Iran’s thus-far ...

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Israel-GCC ties and the bizarre future of Hasbara

Hasbara is the Hebrew word for Israeli state propaganda and it has always been a top-heavy affair, relying less on quality and more on the stifling of opposition via censorship. Also top-heavy are Israel’s newly-formalised Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) partners, from their domestic and foreign policy-making machinery to the distribution of wealth and financial power within their jurisdictions to their media. Zionist organisations and Jewish civil society have already started a socio-religious bonding process of sorts with the GCC. Given the status of the GCC as Arabs, at least from an ethno-linguistic perspective, Hasbara will concurrently need a cosmetic make-over forceful ...

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Why Israel is in no position to forcibly implement the ‘Deal of the Century’

Donald Trump, alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, announced the ‘Deal of the Century’ on January 28th at the White House. Described insincerely as a ‘peace deal’, it is the de-facto legitimisation of illegal Israeli military occupation, territorial expansion and apartheid over Palestine. There is no Palestinian ‘state’ involved, only scattered territories surrounded by Israel – who still, as has historically remained the case, does not adhere to the finalised international borders. Illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank – which are in essence Jewish-only racial colonies and often built after Arab homes are bulldozed and the inhabitants expelled – built ...

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Will Pakistan support Palestine or the ‘Deal of the Century’?

While difficult to predict how Pakistan would react, the scenario where it is deemed suitable by the makers of the notorious ‘Deal of the Century’ for Palestine to be approached for a stance supportive of the deal is not unlikely. The reason for the plausibility of this and for the speculation about Pakistan’s possible embracement of the deal not being entirely outlandish lies in contemporary Pakistani foreign policy itself. The ‘Deal of the Century’: haphazard and contemptible Reports suggest that the substantially already leaked ‘Deal of the Century’ prepared by partisan US-Israeli Zionists for Palestine will be announced within days. ...

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Who really wants the US-Iran war?

The tussle between Iran and the United States of America nearly reached a boiling point after the aerial assassination of Iran’s General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on January 3rd. Immediately, the Gulf states pleaded for urgent de-escalation, knowing full well that a conflict could be disastrous for all the countries close proximity to Iran. Even the Saudis made it abundantly clear that they played no part in the deadly drone strike which claimed 10 lives. The USA duly obliged and President Donald Trump’s speech, after Iran’s limited missile attack on US bases in Iraq, was marked by restraint. The Gulf ...

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Lessons in tenacity: Why Pakistan should learn from Turkey

When faced with the seemingly unyielding support of its ostensible NATO ‘partners’ for Kurdish secessionists in the Syrian-Turkish border regions, Turkey faced a veritable conundrum. Turkey’s  successful October 9-24, 2019 Operation Peace Spring in northeastern Syria against entrenched, US military-protected Kurdish fighters came after setting red lines regarding its national security, acknowledging that lack of respect afforded to those red lines by traditional partners necessitated threatening core foundational assets of its ties with them, recognising its advantages and constraints and hedging its bets with new foreign allies. In numerous ways, Turkey’s negotiation of the ordeal vis a vis the Kurds and ...

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Will Imran Khan regret skipping the Kuala Lumpur Summit?

The flawed gains-and-losses calculus of Imran Khan’s PTI government recently produced what may well be the most aberrational and peculiar foreign policy decision by any country this year. Imran cancelled his attendance of the Kuala Lumpur Summit (which he himself reportedly jointly proposed with Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Mahathir bin Mohamad months ago) after visiting Saudi Arabia – who along with key allies shunned the event – and asking for a $5 billion rollover loan. Regardless of erratic attempts by some to use Mahathir’s politically-correct ‘assurances’ that the Summit was not meant to ‘compete’ with rival powers to downplay the capitulation to the Saudis by ...

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India’s Kashmir propaganda: A leaf out of Israel’s book – Part 2

This article is the second piece in a two part series which adopts a historical perspective in order to analyse just how closely India’s actions in Kashmir over the years have mirrored Israel’s policies in Palestine. Read part one here.  ~ Attempts to hide occupation, annexation and war crimes behind a shroud of ‘legality’ ‘The British gave us Palestine’ is a common Zionist refrain, citing the Balfour Declaration. Yet another example of brittle Hasbara backed only by powerful Zionist media influence, the 1917 Balfour Declaration held no legal validity since Palestine at the time Lord Balfour made his ‘promise’ to Lord Walter Rothschild ...

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India’s Kashmir propaganda: A leaf out of Israel’s book – Part 1

This article is the first in a two part series which adopts a historical perspective in order to analyse just how closely India’s actions in Kashmir over the years have mirrored Israel’s policies in Palestine.  ~ Merely comparing the human-rights situation hasn’t ever sufficed, so let’s get down to the serious comparisons. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leading India is clearly fond of Israel, but India, regardless of its ruling party, has been close to Israel in strategic terms for a long time. From Israeli support to India in wars against Pakistan to India’s status as Israel’s largest weapons market, Indo-Israeli ties are very ...

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Why the alleged spat with WWE epitomises Mohammad bin Salman as a leader

In recent news, the famous American World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) is apparently in a spat with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. It was initially reported that the latter had not paid the former their dues for two special events held in Saudi Arabia this year and reportedly owes WWE Chairman Vince McMahon between $300 and 500 million. Additionally, WWE wrestlers missed a show scheduled immediately after the last Saudi event after Salman ‘retaliated’ to McMahon threatening to cut off the Crown Jewel live television feed by ordering that the departee wrestlers are taken off their flight out of the ...

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