Dr. Arshad M. Khan

Dr. Arshad M. Khan

Dr. Arshad M. Khan is a former Professor based in the US.  Educated at King's College London, OSU and The University of Chicago, he has a multidisciplinary background that has frequently informed his research.  Thus he headed the analysis of an innovation survey of Norway, and his work on SMEs published in major journals has been widely cited.  He has for several decades also written for the press:  These articles and occasional comments have appeared in print media such as The Dallas Morning News, Dawn (Pakistan), The Fort Worth Star Telegram, The Monitor, The Wall Street Journal and others.  On the internet, he has written for Antiwar.com, Asia Times, Common Dreams, Counterpunch, Countercurrents, Dissident Voice, Eurasia Review and Modern Diplomacy among many.  His work has been quoted in the U.S. Congress and published in its Congressional Record. 

T
his has been the first presidential election in living memory where it was difficult to cast a vote. As the voting numbers show, many stayed away.

I
n America goes a proud boast, anyone can be president. Unfortunately, anyone often is. Instead of using the peace dividend from the accord with the Soviet Union to restore infrastructure and improve the lives of the people, a bill for $5 trillion from all the wars awaits.

In a few days the election, and what to many Americans is a political nightmare, will be over. But will it? Who can imagine Trump graciously disappearing from the scene if he loses, or for that matter Hillary.

Hillary Clinton's emails are back in the news as the FBI is obliged to investigate again, subsequent to a sordid case involving a former Congressman married to her close aide; Trump is facing lawsuits for sexual assault although he denies wrongdoing.

On the eve of the last presidential debate, some observations on this unique election are in order. In the forty years I have been following US presidential elections, I have never seen a more crass, a more vulgar and for most citizens a more embarrassing election campaign. Bimbos to the left of them, bimbos to the right of them, onward charged the two candidates -- with apologies to Lord Tennyson.

Friday, October 7 went by quietly unnoticed by major US media. It was the 15th anniversary of the war in Afghanistan -- a war with no foreseeable end in sight. The number of troops due to remain in Afghanistan has been raised 50 percent to 8400.

The week past in the U.S. has seen a spate of multiple killings. Moreover, incidents of road rage leading to murder are also increasing at an alarming rate. On Friday, the Eisenhower Expressway in President Barack Obama's adopted hometown of Chicago was closed for two hours in the morning because a man killed another driver and severely wounded a female passenger after an altercation. Here's the shocker: a few hours after the expressway re-opened, there was yet another road-rage killing on it.

Imagine a volleyball packed with lies being bounced back and forth across a net by one well-practiced in the art of mendacity and the other blissfully unaware of any truth. Then add a referee correcting the lies of one side but not the other, and you have a picture of the debate. Then post-debate spin masters on both sides get busy pushing their candidate as the winner.

The United States has been at war for 15 years -- wars intensified by a Nobel Peace Laureate. The cost is now estimated by reliable sources in the trillions and worldwide casualties in the millions. Post-traumatic stress disorder has reached epidemic proportions: an average of 22 US veterans are committing suicide ... each day.

China and Russia conducted joint naval exercises in the South China Sea last week. Five Russian and ten Chinese ships participated in eight days of drills covering joint air defense, anti-submarine operations, landing, island-seizing, search and rescue operations, and weapons use. In the single largest naval exercise undertaken by the two, the Russian fleet comprised an Udaloy class anti-submarine destroyer, the Admiral Tributs, while the Chinese supplied surface ships, including landing craft, and submarines. The message, in the wake of the international tribunal's ruling against China's claims in the South China Sea, is crystal clear.

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