Rajeev Srinivasan

Rajeev Srinivasan works in sales and marketing in the software industry. He spends his time in the US and India. He graduated from IIT Madras and the Stanford Business School.

September 11th, a year later   - September 11, 2002
'Whatever Americans might feel, September 11th was not the end of civilization as we know it. However painful it might have been, it is merely a wakeup call: "Welcome to the rest of the world! This is how the other half lives, vulnerable to terror and fearful of our lives".'

Taming the predatory State of today   - August 16, 2002
'Instead of being the omniscient and omnipotent Big Brother, the government needs to redefine its role as an infrastructure provider, whose main role is law and order, defense and external affairs and the protection of national interests.'

The predatory State   - August 16, 2002
'The Indian State is not able to, or willing to, or even interested in, protecting the interests of its citizens. The State is a dangerous entity whose primary interest is self-preservation and self-aggrandisement.'

China: From mismanagement to collapse   - July 29, 2002
'What better way to distract people's attention from economic folly and an ideologically bankrupt polity than by going to war?'

India vs China: Startling economic facts   - July 26, 2002
'There is also a lot of hard data that suggests China's 'miracle' looks more like a 'debacle'.'

All the President's Men...   - June 21, 2002
'I do believe choosing A P J Abdul Kalam sends the right message to anyone who cares to observe. The message that today's India is not to be trifled with, that it has strong-willed men and women who are not afraid to stand up to world pressure and look after its interests.'

Tools of the 'secularist' arsenal   - June 4, 2002
'In the 'secular' 'progressive' manifesto, free speech means hate speech against Hinduism, but not other religions. Hinduism is fair game for the most vile hate speech, innuendo, insinuation, and just plain invective. This is blatant discrimination.'

After the carnage: the predatory 'intelligentsia'   - May 13, 2002
'The 'secular' 'progressives' always mouth meaningless platitudes when there is aggression against Hindus. Then why isn't it perfectly legitimate for me, in reverse, to weep for Hindus, and to downplay aggression against Muslims?'

Europe's hypocrisy   - May 1, 2002
'Since these terrorists, aided and abetted by the overly multi-cultural British, end up attacking and harming India, I think India would be fully justified to file a complaint with the newly constituted International Criminal Court or the International Court of Justice, naming Tony Blair, Jack Straw and the British queen for war crimes: they are allowing terrorists to be harboured on their territory.'

Dealing with the Tigers: India's tightrope options   - April 15, 2002
'We who are unable to force General Musharraf to release Masood Azhar and Sheikh Omar should not even dream of getting Prabhakaran handed over to India to stand trial. Whose army is going to enforce that, I ask?'

Two strikes: one in China, the other in Kerala   - April 4, 2002
'There is one thing India can learn from China. That is how to deal with your difficult workers: something India really needs to learn. In fact there is another thing: how to cook the books and make up brilliant macroeconomic statistics that Americans salivate over.'

Godhra, 'secular' 'progressives' and politics   - March 25, 2002
'Can you imagine what would have happened if, say, black rioters had torched a trainload of white commuters in New York City? The entire country would have been in flames.'

Sport as metaphor   - March 12, 2002
'Compare cricket to the way governance works in India: it is almost exactly the same. The personality cults, the dynastic succession of mediocrities, the extreme incompetence and inability to win; and the fattening of self and pals at the trough of public money.'

Blaming the Hindu victim   - March 7, 2002
'What kind of "provocation" leads someone to randomly execute women and children in the most gruesome manner possible, by burning them alive?'

On the art of war   - February 6, 2002
'If Pervez Musharraf does manage to hold on, he is likely to become Pakistan's Gorbachev, presiding over the dissolution of his country's empire.'

Indians will no longer be impressed by Marxist histrionics   - January 4, 2002
'In terms of mutilating textbooks, I am impressed by the sheer chutzpah of the leftists in crying "Wolf!" now when they have unhesitatingly done nothing but large-scale bowdlerization for the last fifty-odd years.'

Historicide: Censoring the past... and the present   - January 3, 2002
'If we inculcate in our children a false history of India we will create a society of monsters: much like our lost generation that worships America, Russia or China, but never India. This cannot be countenanced.'

What happened in Kunduz?   - November 30, 2001
'Which team is Foggy Bottom playing for? The good guys or the bad guys? Whose benefit is the war for: America's or Al Qaeda's?'

Other people's wars: we need to worry only about our national interests - Part II   - November 1, 2001
'India's war is against the real terrorists nurtured by Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and China. The Americans are shadow-boxing: they only want to make a lot of noise, declare victory and go home.'

Other people's wars: let them fight them - Part I   - October 31, 2001
'The Americans traditionally respect the militarily strong, especially those who have hurt them. Now that the Arabs and Afghans have hurt them, the Americans will have some respect for them. We, Indians, have no place in their world view.'

Triumph of the dispossessed: Naipaul and the enigma of exile   - October 22, 2001
'None writes better or more evocatively about the experience of exile, about being dispossessed, than V S Naipaul. The Nobel is a richly deserved tribute.'

Pearl Harbor Redux: another day that will live in infamy   - September 17, 2001
'Americans are finally realizing what it feels like to be the targets of determined and implacable terrorists, especially those fuelled by religious ideology. Indians have coped with this for years, and the Americans have generally been unsympathetic to our plight.'

A Plebiscite for annulling Partition   - September 4, 2001
'I think the majority of people in Pakistan will see that Partition has brought them little good. Rational economic thinking for the majority would indicate reunification.'

You want a plebiscite? Okay, let's do a real one, then!   - September 3, 2001
'The objective is to gain a strategic understanding of the mind-sets of today's Pakistanis and other enemies of India. It is essential for Indians to understand their tactics, their objectives, and their role-models.'

The travails of god's own country   - August 20, 2001
'I have roots only in Kerala and San Francisco, my two homes. I have worried about how San Francisco will disappear one day in the earthquake on the San Andreas Fault; now I fear for Kerala too.'

Mala fide in Madras   - July 4, 2001
'The Centre decided to pick on the governor of Tamil Nadu as they are loath to take on the mercurial Jayalalithaa, whom they may yet feel the need to ally with at some future point.'

Because it's their nature, their custom: why the Indo-Pak summit is doomed   - June 18, 2001
'Pakistani armymen and its surrogate terrorists brutally murder people in Kashmir every day. This is not a nice tete-a-tete between neighbours: we have barbarians at our gates.'

Who killed the royal family of Nepal?   - June 4, 2001
'When the dust settles, I suspect we will find that poor King Birendra and most of his family were massacred not because of their son's love-life, but simply and cold-bloodedly as part of the Sino-Islamic attack on Hindu civilization.'

The Chinese will blink   - May 30, 2001
'They cannot afford a trade war with the Americans. Nor can they afford an arms race: just as the Americans beggared and destroyed the Soviet Union, they will be able to destroy and fragment China.'

Dancing with wolves: India and the rogue states   - May 28, 2001
'India is finally saying, ideology be damned, let us look after our own selfish interests. I hope this is the beginning of a trend. It is in India's strategic interests to contain China just as China has contained us.'

In memoriam: Narayan, Greene, Desani and Adams   - May 21, 2001
'R K Narayan and Graham Greene were two of the best writers of English fiction who were eternal bridesmaids in the Nobel Prize sweepstakes, to mix metaphors wildly. I am not sure why Greene never quite made it. But I think I know why Narayan never got it -- it has to do with epidermal pigmentation.'

Contenders, yes; good marketers, no   - May 16, 2001
'All of a sudden, Indians are contenders. Yet we are ignorant of the power of marketing, and the value of branding.'

The man who knew marketing   - May 15, 2001
'There is little doubt that Dewang Mehta was a master marketeer: he understood the power of packaging and positioning. He was the evangelist par excellence.'

Religion is like soap-powder   - April 25, 2001
'It is entirely possible that the prohibition against idol-worship in the semitic religions is really a secular marketing idea that has in course of time been transformed into an article of faith.'

And what exactly is wrong with idol-worship?   - April 24, 2001
'When Hindus prostrate themselves before images of their gods, these are idols. When Christians prostrate themselves before images of the crucified Jesus or Mary, these are icons."

Beware the Ides of March, George Fernandes   - March 17, 2001
'Very interestingly, it has been exactly one week since the Chinese announced their biggest-ever budget for their military: an official number of $17.2 billion (an 18 pc increase from last year in real terms); and the Economist suggests that 'actual spending is between three and five times higher'. And all of a sudden, India loses its most able defence minister ever. Curious coincidence?'

Children of a Lesser God   - February 23, 2001
'Christians moan about "attacks"? Theirs has been a civilisational attack on the rest of the world, their religion no more than a convenient facade for European imperialism.'

What the Thunder Said   - January 31, 2001
'Those who live abroad sometimes have a tendency to give a measly sum, say $ 50, thinking of the multiplicative factor of the exchange rate. This is nonsense. Give one day's salary, people! This is the least you can do. Let the pain be equally shared amongst all of us.'

Comparative advantage: India vs China   - January 15, 2001
'I think India's fate is neither Japan's nor Mexico's. Her future is brighter. As for China, I think its future is more likely to be Mexico than Japan. This is why I am not quite as worried about China as a lot of Indians seem to be.'

Goodbye, foul Millennium: millennius horribilis   - January 1, 2001
'India is coming out of its self-imposed isolation. We are coming out of a thousand years of being told we are inferior. Whereas in point of fact, our traditions are superior. We have forgotten and lost to termites more than most other civilisations ever created.'

Brutes only understand brute force   - December 8, 2000
'It is true insanity to offer peace to someone with the instincts of a raging bull. These terrorists are today's implacable buffalo-demons; let us not do the Chamberlain thing of trying to appease them. It won't work, as it didn't work with the Nazis and the Chinese.'

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: December 2000 edition   - December 7, 2000
'The national interest comes first. Nobody is going to remember those who stood for foolish principles (remember Non-Alignment, that which caused us to stand around like idiots mumbling slogans about Palestine and South Africa as the world raced ahead?): it is results that count.'

Civilisation itself is under withering attacks by barbarians   - November 27, 2000
'Maybe foreign correspondents get to truly despise the countries they live in.

Constitutional crisis in the US: what, me worry?   - November 13, 2000
'I love all those allegations about irregularities in the polls in Florida. What, I ask, is the difference between this and the large-scale booth-capturing and rigging of polls made so popular by Laloo Prasad Yadav in Bihar? Is Jeb Bush, brother of George W, and the governor of Florida, just a slightly more presentable Laloo Prasad Yadav?'

Of God and Holy Water   - October 25, 2000
'Non-Hindus coming into the temple are not coming there to pray to the Hindu deity. They must be coming in as tourists, to gawk. Since this is not a museum but a living place of devotion, I think the authorities are right to insist that only practising Hindus be allowed in.'

More on language -- II   - October 5, 2000
'I am happy that Tamils and Hindis should gang up on me, a common foe who ridiculed them both. This is fitting, and oddly enough shows the remarkable underlying unity of India.'

More on language -- I   - October 4, 2000
'I will not accept one charge -- that I am anti-India. Disliking Hindi does not by any means make anyone anti-Indian, any more than disliking Delhi or Madras would make one anti-Indian. There is enough diversity in the country. I personally believe in pluralism: there is more than one acceptable path.'

Language as a mask of conquest -- II   - September 22, 2000
'The plethora of languages in India will probably continue into the near future; much as certain Northerners might like to push their idea of a Bharat which is Hindi-only, I think they will not succeed. And this is a good thing too.'

Language as a mask of conquest -- I   - September 13, 2000
'Most South Indians are not very keen on seceding from the Hindi-dominated North. While we might make occasional noises about it, the Malayalis, the Kannadigas and the Telugus are aware that if were to create an independent nation, we would merely be exchanging the tyranny of Hindi for the tyranny of Tamil: for Tamils are noticeably chauvinistic about their language, whatever its real merits.'

Some Mother's Son: Bring on the draft   - August 31, 2000
Every 21-year-old who graduates from college should be required to participate in active military duty for two years. Yes, they spend a few years of their youth in the discomfort of the barracks, but what they get in return is invaluable. Discipline. The ability to sacrifice for the greater good of the community. Self-respect. All very important for India.'

Hindu Pilgrims Massacred; But the Show Must Go On   - August 18, 2000
'Can you imagine the fuss if 50 Muslim or Christian pilgrims were slaughtered in India? Do you remember the breast-beating about attacks on Christians? The god-awful fuss made over exactly one missionary burned to death? Hindus, in the great Socialist Progressive Secular Republic of India are second-class citizens.'

Beware of Greeks bearing gifts!   - August 2, 2000
'It is indeed most effective for Pakistan to continue to send its terrorists into India and keep J&K on the boil, while appearing to be sincere about talks. Killing two birds with one stone for it makes them look reasonable, and also takes the spotlight away from their cross-border terrorism.'

Remembering the Emergency   - july 7, 2000
'Indians have demonstrated that freedom is important to them, that is, freedom from the brutish British; but we seem to have trouble with the idea of individual freedom.'

In praise of Indian women   - June 19, 2000
'Whenever I watch Indian television I am struck by a singular fact -- the girls are outstandingly pulchritudinous, but the guys are, by and large, um... dogs.'

"If you're going to write about this place, just don't tell them where it is, okay?"   - June 13, 2000
Rajeev Srinivasan visits a wonderful resort on the Kerala backwaters and discovers it to be Heaven in God's Own Country. Indeed time spent at the floating cottages at Poovar Island Resort, not far from Trivandrum, was idyllic.

India cannot be indifferent to Lanka crisis   - May 24, 2000
'India will be forced to play a more positive role. We really would prefer if Sri Lankans stop fighting each other and make the island the tropical paradise it should be.'

At long last, containing China   - May 19, 2000
'For China, the threat of an encroaching Indian naval presence will further undermine any potential Sino-Indian reconciliation and co-operation. An India capable of placing a carrier force off Chinese shores -- supported by submarines capable of ballistic missile launches -- drastically changes the equation with regard to China's support for India's rival, Pakistan.'

Damned if we do, damned if we don't   - May 13, 2000
'India's only option is to provide humanitarian assistance, perhaps provide some weapons and ammunition but no troops. India must make it clear to the Lankans that India will not tolerate the presence of troops from any other nation. And that rights to Trincomalee are not to be negotiated away for any reason.'

The good, the bad, and the ugly   - May 9, 2000
'The Turks, until recently, have generally supported Pakistan. Ecevit's rebuff is an ironic reversal indeed -- it means Pakistan is fast becoming the untouchable of the world, through its own terrorist and authoritarian ways.'

Kashmir mayhem and isolating Musharraf   - April 13, 2000
'Why is the media so loud when hollering about the violations of human rights of Muslims but not of Hindus in Jammu and Kashmir? And when will India's obsession with Pakistan end?'

It is good to give the obnoxious Albright a taste of her own medicine   - March 31, 2000
'The very sight of India talking to the Taiwanese will make Qian Qichen, Chinese foreign minister, have a fit. What a good bargaining chip for India -- you Chinese stop mucking about in Jammu and Kashmir and we won't give Taiwan any nukes or missiles!'

Veni, vidi, vici? Not exactly, but not bad, either   - March 30, 2000
'The much ballyhooed Clinton visit to India went off better than I expected. The cooing noises between Clinton and Indian parliamentarians and Indian businessmen were nothing short of deafening. India did not cave in and sign the CTBT. Furthermore, the global media seems to have improved its opinion about India -- a striking reminder that propaganda, positioning and marketing actually work.'

Why I am not a South Asian   - March 19, 2000
'When Pakistan's entire raison d'etre is implacable hatred for India, it becomes inappropriate to 'include' them. "South Asia" is an illusion, other than as a trading forum. If at some point in the future, Pakistanis can get over their congenital hatred of "vegetarian Hindus" then maybe we can talk about South Asia. As of now, it makes much more sense to push the "Indian" brand forward. We lose by pushing "South Asia".'

Wanted: a foreign policy with backbone and competence   - March 15, 2000
'With a foreign policy establishment that has no strategic planning skills, no clear agenda, and no spine, it is no wonder that everyone thinks they can push India around. We need a thorough revamp of the system -- India needs professionals using sophisticated game-theoretic models, calling in the expertise of sympathetic outsiders, and above all, officials with prickly self-respect.'

More on immigration, race and civil rights in America   - March 6, 2000
'Racism is not the issue, really, it is the self-respect to demand our rights. Otherwise we will lose them in the long run, and racial profiling will begin. Remember that rights only go to those who are vocal.'

Wanted: some fair-weather fans   - February 24, 2000
Rajeev Srinivasan makes an appeal to Indian cricket fans to stop watching the Indian team play. Because that will bring down the market value of the players, and force them to perform.

'If I don't put handcuffs, you may grab a pen and kill me'   - February 23, 2000
'The agent put a handcuff on me. He didn't say anything. He didn't read my rights... They treated us like common criminals.' Rajeev Srinivasan on the INS's abominable treatment of 40 Indian software developers.

'Welcome to America. Now here are your handcuffs'   - February 22, 2000
'I fear there is an element of "Whatever will the Americans think of us model-minority Indian-Americans? We must denounce this man just in case the Americans think we are all sex-criminals. See, we are not like him." Fie on that sentiment, I say! Let us worry about the reality, not what someone else may think.'

'Just say No!' to Clinton   - January 31, 2000
'Looking at it based strictly as a layman, India appears to be selling herself short on this much-bally-hooed Clinton visit. What exactly would happen if India took a slightly different tack? What if India extracted her own pound of flesh and made some demands.'

China doesn't matter   - January 22, 2000
'I believe that China is in much more parlous shape than is generally believed. I think China has been brilliant only in one thing -- propaganda. It has managed to convince a gullible America that it is a very important nation, economically, militarily, and politically.'

Water Wars: Cauvery, Chinatown and Cadillac Desert   - January 17, 2000
'The United Nations estimates that by 2025, as much as two-thirds of the world's population will suffer from moderate to severe water shortages. If India is to escape this -- and the water wars that will surely follow -- there needs to be a sustained campaign for the management of rainwater and runoff.'

The making of a soft State   - January 13, 2000
'What exactly is India afraid of? Indo-Chinese relationships will never get better, because it is a maxim of Chinese strategy that it must contain and destroy India.'

On faith   - January 10, 2000
'Hindus demand respect, and deserve it. If this is not given, then Christians cannot expect respect in return.'

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