Improving Security Ties with India   [open pdf - 675KB]

"India has entered a new era as a rising regional power in Asia. The sub-continent lies along one of the world's most dangerous flash-points: the Kashmir Border with Pakistan and China. The long-standing crisis in the Kashmir area has the potential to destabilize the entire region. This underscores the need for US mediation between Pakistan and India, as the consequences of either a nuclear or non-nuclear war there would be disastrous for the US Global War on Terrorism. India as a democracy with a large economic base is an increasingly important ally in the region, although rising Hindu fundamentalism does pose a danger to the secular framework of modern India. India sees itself as a dominant power in the region and shares many common goals with the United States in South Asia. These goals include: Managing the consequences of instability; Eliminating the ideological and financial sources of terrorism; Protecting the sea lanes of communication; Securing a stable and free access to energy sources/markets in the region; Preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. The United States must make a more concerted effort to enhance relations with India to foster peace and stability in South Asia, while maintaining a balance with its neighbor, Pakistan. The purpose of this paper is to examine common US-Indian goals, India's domestic concerns that shape its foreign policy, as well as explore India's role in the South Asian region vis-à-vis its neighbors, and the evolution of US-Indian relations since independence and their impact on today's relations. This paper will also recommend options for the United States to improve its security ties with India by increasing bilateral efforts through diplomatic, informational, military and economic means."

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