The Hundred Years Marathon:
Michael Pillsbury, aged 75 years is author of the book named ‘The Hundred Years Marathon’. It is a book about the USA propping up China from an extremely poor economy to an advanced econmy. ‘Naive’ is the word chosen by him for USA, not me. Let me introduce to him:
Michael Paul Pillsbury is the Director of the Center on Chinese Strategy, Hudson Institute, Washington, D.C., from 2014. He is involved with China policy since the time of President Nixon. Pillsbury is therefore an experienced former government official who served in the Defense Department and the Senate staff. He has been recognized by President Trump in public at the White House as the authority on China.
Chinese wisdom is well known. In China they say “Deck the Tree with False Blossoms”(Through the use of artifice and disguise, make something of no value, appear valuable), and “Deceive the heavens and cross the ocean” (Mask your real goals with a fake goal, until your aims are achieved)
Pillsbury knows it all about China. Actually after reading 60% of his book I thought: “Oh. So this is what was happening. So this is how we landed in this mess.”
The most boring book:
Hard choices is a boring book. Hard Choices is more like the official diary of lady Clinton. Rather it is an appointment book of madam Clinton. It is a book about her engagements all all over the world with different politicians and heads of the state. It is a testimony of confession that United Nation has no role in the world except as a NGO to provide charitable supplies and not the the political solutions.
I wonder how many times the word ‘I’ must have been used in this book. I also wonder if this book makes a record of maximum number of ‘I’s in the book.
The book takes us to various problems faced by different countries around the world at the time when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state of United States of America. As she nicely put it:
“America’s leadership in the world resembles a relay race. A Secretary, a President, a generation are all handed the baton and asked to run a leg of the race as well as we can, and then we hand off the baton to our successors.”
Newspapers as new Brahmins:
Election Commission of India has mandated that no political advertisement would be permissible without proper KYC (Know Your Customer). Similarly Government of India has also called upon the Social Media Platforms to ensure that their platform is not used to influence public opinion. In this background I recently published my first political book: India 2019: Will Narendra Modi Win?: (A political analysis of democracy in India) Kindle Edition
I approached Quora for advertisement of book and the campaign was automatically blocked. I sought a review with following request:
“The ad does not promote any political party. It relates to political analysis of elections of India. Please check the sample of book. Therefore it does not fall under the restriction of ECI. Further I have clearly declared that I am not related to any political party. Pleas review and approve.”
I recently concluded reading the book titled:
Defeat is an Orphan: How Pakistan Lost the Great South Asian War.
It is a succinct summary of Pakistan and it’s activities including it’s obsession with India. Written from a western perspective, it is particularly interesting as it eschews the wars before 1998 and starts with Kandahar hijacking. It has details of myths created by Pakistan around its various misadventures. A must read for any one interested in the subject. An excerpts about effect of ending of cold was and disintegration of USSR:
“While India had become more pragmatic and outward-looking, Pakistan had become more ideological and isolated. Pakistan had misread the collapse of the Soviet Union as having been caused by the anti-Soviet jihad in Afghanistan and evidence of the benefits of Islamist proxies. Unable to see beyond its immediate neighbourhood, it disregarded the many other causes of the collapse—the Soviet Union had been rotting from within for decades for reasons quite independent of Afghanistan. Pakistan’s backing for the Taliban and Pakistan-based groups fighting in Kashmir through the 1990s had also deepened its well of support for Islamist militancy. It increasingly presented itself as a champion of Muslims worldwide, defining the defence of everyone from Kashmiris to Palestinians as a matter of national interest. Saddam Hussein, whose 1990 invasion of Kuwait had been defeated by a US-led coalition, was seen as a hero.”
Another excerpt about recent surgical strikes by India on terrorist camp inside POK:
“Shortly before calling the media to the news conference, the foreign ministry circulated—via the same WhatsApp group—a White House statement on an overnight phone call between Indian National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and his US counterpart Susan Rice. Condemning the Uri attack as “cross-border terrorism”; the Americans reiterated US demands that Pakistan take action against the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed and reaffirmed “the robust US-India partnership”. It was one of the strongest official statements in favour of India ever from Washington, which for years had tried to balance pressure on Pakistan over its support for Islamist militants with quiet diplomacy to nudge Delhi on Kashmir. Notably it made no mention of Kashmir; nor called for India and Pakistan dialogue. The entire onus was on Pakistan to disarm its jihadi proxies. The US statement set India up well for the announcement at the media briefing, where the main speaker was, unusually, the Indian Army’s Director-General of Military Operations (DGMO). In an overnight operation, Lt-General Ranbir Singh said, the Indian Army had conducted “surgical strikes” against Pakistan-backed militants preparing to infiltrate into Indian Kashmir. These strikes on launch-pads along the LoC had inflicted “significant casualties”. India had no plans for further military operations, he added, and had already contacted the Pakistan Army to inform it formally of its action. The DGMO read his statement in English and Hindi, took no questions and saluted the media on his way out. Other military officials were on hand to tell journalists the Indian Army had crossed the LoC in several different places to target would-be infiltrators. For the first time since 1971, India had announced military action across the LoC.”
Generally concluding Para is a mystery in a fiction but in a non-fiction; it can entice interest. One may read the book as to how the author, namely Myra Macdonald, reached to following conclusion: Continue reading
Writers block can be of different kind.
In last about one year, I am trying to write rather I am writing only to discard it later. Something right is not happening. It is a non fiction based on research but the idea is shrinking and expanding. First it was too big a project to cover. So I shrunk it and began afresh in September 2018 but only now to discover that it is boring, just like all other books I compiled for law. Except that it not the law which is the topic, this time.
It dawns on to me that writing about law is the easiest thing to do. It is expected to be boring. Least of all, nobody expects a law-book to be gripping. It is so easy to compile under different topics, liberally use cut paste and the book is ready. Only research is time-consuming. Once research is complete, writing a law-book is the easiest part. As author, one could write and even if what is written is cumbersome to understand, author is never blamed. Every reader thinks that perhaps his/her IQ is not that good. [:)] Author gets no blame. How convenient.
However to write a non fiction which is gripping, free-flowing and which does not sound like a text-book, is a real challenge. At least for me. So after scrapping my third draft (1/3rd part actually), today, I am going to try to start again.
Why don’t I quit?
The idea did cross my mind. But I do not have any other challenge, at present. Having failed three times makes it even more attractive. There is nothing more attractive than poison and impossible.
There is no reason to quit. One year in waste is the price of learning curve. Hope I get it write this time. Wish me luck even if we do not believe in that. It is customary.