Hot Lecturette/Group Discussion Topics: Indo-US Relations: Why USA Needs India?
Hello friends i have been continuously asked to put a post on Indo-US relations as this is really important
|Indo-US relationship : Why USA needs India|
Indo- US Relations During the Cold War Era
- During the cold war era, most countries of the world got aligned towards either of the the two power blocks, i.e. USSR (Warsaw Pact Nations) or the US led Western Block (NATO Countries).
- Pakistan joined the US led Western Block in 1954, while India decided to adopted the Non-Alingned ploicy and refrained from joining any of the power blocks, however, it had a visible leaning towards the Soviet Union.
- After independence, in the early 1950s, India was largely dependent on America and Soviet Union for food and provision of development loans. During this period the share of aid from USA surpassed that of USSR by nearly double.
- Like in the present times, USA regarded India as a strategic parterner and a counter weight to the rise of Communist China.
- That is why Kennedy admnistration openly supported India during the Sino-India war of 1962 and called it a blattant act of aggression by China.
- USA, towards the end of the war, also flew in humanitarian and limited military hardware supplies for the Indian troops.
- After the assasination of Kennedy in 1963, the Indo-US relationship gradually deteriorated under the Nixon admnistration. He established close ties with Pakistan and provided military and economic aid to Pakistan.
- A major reason for the American policy shift was that India strated demonstrating closeness with the Soviet Union and the US wanted a close ally to counter the Soviet influence in the region.
- During the Indo-Pak war of 1971, USA openly provided Pakistan with military and moral support. In fact they even deployed their aircraft carrier ‘USS Enterprise’ towards the Bay of Bengal as a show of force during the war.
- In 1974 India conducted its first Nuclear Test much to the annoyance of the US, who called for imposing a ban on the export of nuclear material to India in 1978, as India was not a signatory of Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.
- When Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan in 1980, the Regan admnistration improved ties with India, besides maintaining better ties with Pakistan to continue to maintain a credible influence in the area.
- During this period a range of selected military technologies were supplied to India, like, super computers, night visions, radars, gas turbines for naval frigates and engines for India’s light combat aircraft.
Indo-US Relations After the Disintegration of USSR
- The first ripple of unplesantness occured in the Indo-US relationship when PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee gorvenment conducted the nuclear weapon testing in Pokhran in May 1998.
- USA voted for a UN Security Council Resolution condeming the tests and President Bill Clinton imposed economic sanctions on India, including cutting off all military and economic aid, freezing loans by American banks to Indian companies, prohibiting American aerospace technology and uranium exports to India.
- These sanctions had little effect on Indian economy as it had very limited tarde with the USA at that point.
- The sanctions were soon lifted and President Clinton visited India in Mar 2000. During this visit, the Indo-US Science & Technology Forum was established.
- During the period from 2001 to 2006, especially after the September 2001 attack on the World Trade Centre, the Indo-US relationship blossomed under the Bush admnistration.
- The main areas of confluence were, fighting islamic extremism, energy security and fighting climate change.
- During the period from 2004 to 2008, bilateral trade between the two countries trippled.
- The Indo-US Civil Nuclear Agreement, called the 123 Agreement was signed in Oct 2008.
- In November 2010, President Barack Obama visited India and addressed a joint session of Indian Parliament and backed India’s bid for permanent seat in the UN Security Council.
- In the previous two to three years a lot of bilateral initiatives have been taken on the following areas: countering terrorism, disarmament and non-proliferation, trade and economic relations, energy security, climate change, agriculture, education, health and science and technological development.
- PM Modi is scheduled to visit USA in the end of September 2014 and lot is being expected out of this visit.
Why USA Needs India?
- The following issues are very high on priority for USA to remain dominant in the world affairs and to maintain the balance of power, which no country in Eurasia or Asia can challenge:
a. Contain China’s military and economic expansionism.
b. Effectively control the spread of islamic terrorism in AF-Pak and middle east region (Iraq-Syria).
c. Stub Russia’s influence in Ukraine, through coericive diplomacy.
d. Increase leverage in Iran through a 'stick and carrot' approach.
e. improve economy at home and generate employment.
- The above mentioned issues, are also the core issues being discussed during the ongoing meet of the heads of NATO countries at Wales.
- In most of the above explicit requirements, India can play a decisive role. How it could do that, is discussed in the succeeding paras.
- China’s policy of ‘String of Peals’ by having a major presence and aggresive posture in the sub continent can be effectively countered through India’s ‘Look East’ policy.
- USA is keenly observing and supporting India in its views on calling China’s ambition to expand its maritime borders in the South China and East China sea as an unreasonable act of aggression.
- The recent visit of PM Modi to Japan, his ongoing endeavour to improve ties with SAARC countries and the SE Asian nations, is a clear signal to China that India can not be brow beaten.
- India happens to be one of the largest donors for Afghanistan’s reconstruction. It donated $ 1.2 billon, which makes it the largest donor in the region.
- Hence, after the exit of the US troops from Afghanistan, India is bound to play a pivotal role in the geo-politics of democratic Afghanistan.
- Condidering the known bias of Pakistan ISI and Military towards the Taliban, India will be its most reliable strtegic parter in keeping the fundamentalist forces in check in the region.
- Since, India has traditionally maintained good relations with Iran and Russia, it can play an important role of a mediator between Iran-US and Russia-US to resolve the ongoing politico-military stalemate.
- India provides the largest number of consumers for American goods, (every sixth human on the globe is an Indian). To boost American economy Indians must flurish and consume to make US businesses and manufacturing to run profitably and also generate employment.
- India is the largest supplier of young human resource for both, blue collar and white collar jobs in America.
- India provides the cutting edge technocrats to work and promote American interests.
- USA has now surpassed Russia as India’s number one defence supplier. India has signed / is in the process of signing major Defence deals with USA, like, ‘M-777’ Ultra-light Howitzers, ‘Javilin’ Anti Tank Guided Missiles, UAVs, 'Apache' Attack & 'Chinook' Heavy- Lift Helicopters.
- Incidently, The 145 Ultra-Light M-777 Howitzers are being procurred for the new mountain corps being raised to counter the Chinese threat in NE India.
- Hence, in the conclusion I would like to say that USA views India as an emerging regional economic and military power, that can act as its strategic partner and an economic money spinner. The convergence of interests on regional, and most global issues is further cementing the relationship.
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