David J. Karl

David J. Karl is president of the Asia Strategy Initiative, an analysis and advisory firm focused on the nexus of politics and economics in Asia, with particular focus on South Asia. He also is co-founder and chief knowledge officer at Geoskopke LLC, a market intelligence company focused on key emerging nations. He has served as an adjunct professor at Occidental College and the University of Southern California. He earlier served as director of studies at the Pacific Council on International Policy, in charge of the council’s think-tank focused on foreign policy issues of particular resonance to the US West Coast. He holds a PhD in International Relations, writing his dissertation on the India-Pakistan strategic rivalry.

Fault Lines in Biden’s Approach to China

Feb 18, 2021

So far, the White House has undertaken a flurry of activity designated to back up President Joe Biden’s pledge to be tough-minded on China. He has warned that Beijing will face “extreme competition” from the United States. Taiwan’s top representative was invited to the presidential inauguration on January 20 and...

The Irony of the Mattis Appointment

Feb 02, 2017

Does the appointment of Secretary of Defense James Mattis represent a break with the Obama administration? The easy confirmation of James Mattis as President Donald Trump’s defense secretary entails no small amount of irony. Senate Democrats perceive the retired Marine general as someone who will speak unvarnished truth to a...

Pakistani Support for Terrorism Risks Conflict With India

Feb 05, 2016

By failing to crack down on all terrorist groups operating in the country, Pakistan runs the risk of becoming embroiled in a serious conflict with India. In January, the complexity of South Asia’s security dynamics once again came into full view. The new year was barely more than a day...

Hamid Gul and Pakistan’s Schizophrenia

Sep 02, 2015

The example of Gul illustrates what is a basic frustration for India: Any rapprochement with Pakistan can only come about via a military establishment that swings between paranoia and pragmatism. The recent passing of Hamid Gul, a Pakistani general who served as head of the powerful Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency...

India-China Relations Advance by Inches, Not Miles

May 26, 2015

Following his trip to China, Modi has talked about advancing India-China relations by “miles.” Where do relations between New Delhi and Beijing stand following Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to China? Pretty much the same as before. The trip did little to alter the pattern of heightened strategic competition...

Why Should We Expect Obama To Be Any Better in 2015?

Jan 06, 2015

Pundits say Obama is on a roll, but in what other year has a US president been rebuked by three of his defense secretaries? The new narrative among the punditry caste is that US President Barack Obama finished 2014 on an unexpected high note that will carry over into the...

Pakistan and the Curse of the Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Aug 06, 2014

With a new government in India, will Pakistan be able to contain its jihadists? More evidence is emerging that Pakistan’s security establishment is not an omnipotent presence, but rather the victim of what might be called the “Sorcerer’s Apprentice Syndrome” from Goethe’s classic tale about the dangers of conjuring up proxies...

Modi's Economic Policy: Encumbrances Loom But Opportunity Awaits

Jun 06, 2014

With India’s lack of a unified national market as well as high inflation, Modi’s economic policy will be affected. On the day of his landslide election as India’s new prime minister, Narendra Modi exclaimed: “I want to make the 21st century India’s century. It will take ten years, not very long.” However,...

Obama's Broken House

Nov 09, 2013

The White House is insulating Obama; thereby leading to domestic and foreign policy blunders.

India and the Long, Slow Walk Toward Destiny

Aug 13, 2013

By 2030, India will be the world's rising economic powerhouse. “We are citizens of a great country, on the verge of bold advance, and we have to live up to that high standard” —  Jawaharlal Nehru, on the eve of Indian independence.

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