Topic:

India

Russia’s Deadly Embrace of Pakistan

| August 31, 2018

In a far-reaching development for India’s strategic interests, on July 31 Russia signed an agreement with Pakistan for naval cooperation. The agreement comes on the heels of an accord between Moscow and Islamabad in April of this year to increase cooperation in the training of armed forces personnel in the naval field and the conduct of a wide range of joint military exercises.

The Indian and Pakistani Elections

and | August 30, 2018

The Indian general election of 2019 will be a decisive moment for South Asia’s overall security. As India is a major power player in the region, the 2019 elections will pose challenges as well as opportunities for both India and its neighbors. Also, it remains to be seen whether India will be able to maintain its power position in the region in the wake of the recent election of Pakistani PM Imran Khan.

The Impact on India of the Collapse of the Iran Nuclear Deal

| July 18, 2018

The withdrawal of the US from the Iran nuclear deal is likely to deal a blow to India’s strategic investments in energy-rich Iran and land-locked Afghanistan as the Chinese strategic footprint there grows. Maintaining good relations with both Riyadh and Tehran will also become more challenging for New Delhi. The Iran dilemma materialized at the wrong time for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as India is preparing for parliamentary elections in less than a year. The pressure being exerted by the Trump administration on the Modi government to stop all oil imports from Tehran is set to complicate India’s diplomatic ties with Iran. It remains to be seen how India will secure its interests in Afghanistan and Central Asia without Iranian support.

India and China Are Converging on Afghanistan

| June 7, 2018

The “informal summit” between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping at Wuhan in China in late April generated worldwide interest. Aimed at sidestepping contentious issues and enhancing greater strategic communication at the leadership level, the summit witnessed the two leaders recognizing the “common threat” of terrorism and expressing commitment to cooperate on counter-terrorist measures. However, an issue that largely escaped attention is an agreement between them to work jointly on economic projects in Afghanistan. This has been interpreted as Beijing’s message to Islamabad that China “approves” India’s positive role in stabilizing Afghanistan, a fact already recognized by the Trump administration in its new Afghan policy.

Hope and Optimism: The Indian-Israeli Relationship

| March 6, 2018

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s state visit to India was predictably full of pomp and circumstance. More importantly, it underscored yet again the closeness that now characterizes the bilateral relationship.

Narendra Modi’s Visit to Ramallah

| February 18, 2018

During Indian PM Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel in July 2017, India finally ended its long practice that dignitaries who visit Israel must also travel to the Palestinian-controlled territories. On February 10, 2018, he conducted a landmark visit to Ramallah, the first such visit by an Indian PM – and did not visit Israel. This “de-hyphenation” of Israel-Palestine reflects Modi’s pragmatic and sensible approach to relations with the two entities.

India and Israel: Strategic Partners on the Move

| January 30, 2018

India and Israel elevated their bilateral relationship to that of a “strategic partnership” in July 2017. While agriculture and opportunities for cooperation in the innovation economy hogged the limelight during both the prime ministerial visits, the defense/security peg of the partnership continues to have the greatest traction. The two countries hope to take it forward with an ambitious agenda that includes joint manufacturing as well as joint research and development.

The Indian-Chinese Conflict: Is It Really Heating Up?

| September 12, 2017

On July 24, 2017, China warned India “not to push its luck” – the latest salvo in a long-running border conflict. India wants the Chinese to stop construction of a road to the “chicken’s neck”: the Doklam plateau in the Himalayan mountain ridge between China and the Kingdom of Bhutan, India’s close ally. This narrow strip of land connects China to northeastern India. The Chinese road, if completed, could ultimately threaten India and would represent a major strategic advantage for the Chinese.

India-US Counterterrorism Cooperation: The Way Forward

| August 8, 2017

Narendra Modi’s visit to the Trump White House in June was his fifth visit to the US since becoming PM of India in 2014, but his first encounter with an American president who does not seem to share his immediate predecessors’ positive view of India. Since Trump’s election on an “America First” platform, there has been apprehension in New Delhi that it might fall off Washington’s radar.

Modi in Israel: Diplomacy and Development

| July 31, 2017

India-Israel defense and intelligence ties developed even before diplomatic relations were established between the countries. The establishment of diplomatic relations opened the door for greater cooperation, but relations remained low-profile until the ascendancy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He has given a dynamic push to India’s Israel policy. His recent, long overdue visit to Israel was centered around development-related issues and intensified the bilateral relationship.