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Has India sold out to the USA?

by Sunny on 4th March, 2006 at 6:54 pm    

The more I think about Bush’s visit, the more I come to the conclusion that there is a tinge of colonial mentality to this.

On the one hand it is important for the country to have good relations with the world’s super-power for trade as well exchanging intellectual property. It also helps having the USA put pressure on Pakistan to reel in its support for terrorist groups in Kashmir. And maybe to act as a counterweight to China in case a diplomatic spat arises.

But India hasn’t suddenly turned into a democracy that George Bush has woken up to. For one, the latter wants allies to play off against China too. But I feel there is also an element of wanting India not to become too independent with energy.

It was already unhappy with India’s traditionally close relationship with Iran. So with a bit of *wink wink nudge nudge* it provides some technology in return for stabbing Iran in the back. It’s previous policy of denying India access to technology and hitting it with sanctions following the nuclear tests got it nowhere - the country has built a nuclear programme in isolation since the 1970s and is in some ways ahead of developed countries in the field. So why would India want the USA to provide technology that it does not even need? Randeep Ramesh:

But India’s energy policy has already come under serious pressure from America; the last petroleum minister had ambitious plans to build an Asian grid of oil and gas pipelines stretching from Ukraine to Japan. This plan, to be kickstarted by a pipeline from Iran to India via Pakistan, ran counter to Washington’s interests. Last month the minister lost the oil portfolio.
As Bush’s own nuclear negotiating team has made clear in testimony to Congress, the administration wants to “lock in” India to a deal before moving to tie down and restrain the country’s nuclear potential in non-proliferation discussions.

It makes great headlines and boosts the Congress party’s stature with the middle-classes, but there is something amiss in the bigger picture.

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  1. Sunny — on 4th March, 2006 at 7:00 pm  

    A bit of a sensationalist headline, heh… I really should be working for a tabloid.

    btw I will not tolerate this thread turning into a India v Pakistan slagging match like the last one - any message going down that route will be deleted.

  2. _Zain_ — on 4th March, 2006 at 7:24 pm  

    “It was already happy with India’s traditionally close relationship with Iran. So with a bit of *wink wink nudge nudge* it provides some technology in return for stabbing Iran in the back.”

    Couldn’t have said it better myself Sunny.
    There’s definqtely a ‘control the area’ ploy going on.
    Pakistan were stroked and pocketed with veiled threats over Afghanistan and this doesn’t really suprise me.

    If Bush wants more allies to play off against China, he still doesn’t have the control over Musharrafs alliance with Jintao.

    China & Pakistan are still going strong and I don’t see much getting in the way of that for a while, what with recent signings on trade and defence agreements.

    Thirteen bilateral agreements just cement their relationship further.

    I’ll wait a few months to see what comes of this.

  3. xyz — on 4th March, 2006 at 7:49 pm  

    Of course there’s truth to what you’re saying. However, I don’t think India’s politicians are that stupid — gulp! — as to believe this is some sort of wholly altruistic gesture and don’t realize that the US is trying to box them in a bit and use them against China (and the Chinese were clearly annoyed about this deal). Charlie Rose’s interview with India’s national security guy MK Narayanan shows that India is not entirely gullible and to be taken for granted. The US is doing what it thinks is in its best interest and India is doing the same. India got nowhere being stuck in that virtuous but ultimately hollow and unsustainable leader of the NAM for decades. It has to be pragmatic - this will involve an element of being used and using right back.

    It was a bit worrying to see Manmohan Singh being a little too deferential and obsequious to Bush and the U.S., as he was when he went to the UK, but MK Narayanan balanced that out well. Anyways, the US Congress may well shoot down this deal so it will all be moot. But Singh is a smart guy (who just has to stand up for himself a bit more) and I don’t see — fingers crossed — India turning into anyone’s puppet anytime soon (and who would have thought that it would happen under a Congress govt.!)

  4. raz — on 4th March, 2006 at 7:50 pm  

    Apparently Bush has just said in Pakistan that he has dropped his oppositon to the Iran-India-Pakistan pipeline. Interesting.

  5. raz — on 4th March, 2006 at 7:55 pm  

    I doubt that Pakistan will get a similar deal to India, but I think Bush has basically given a green light to Pakistan to carry on getting whatever they need from China while the US looks the other way. I expect to see more N-plants being developed by the Chinese in Pakistan over the next few years. Also, Bush hasn’t said anything about Gwadar port, which will not only be a major economic boost for Pakistan but may well become a staging post for the Chinese navy. I think Pakistan is taking a pragmatic approach here, getting whatever they can from the USA but recognising that the Chinese are by far the more dependable ally.

  6. raz — on 4th March, 2006 at 8:08 pm  

    On a lighter note, Bush playing cricket:


  7. inders — on 4th March, 2006 at 8:09 pm  

    Any deal which the United States enters into will be within American interests. This is the defining motavation of every US negotation of the last 100 years at least.

    The discussion is really about wether this is in India’s interests. Increased civilian nuclear capabilities will lessen India’s reliance on Middle East Oil slightly. The risks of entering into a more complex relationship with the United States are less clear. Is India at risk of its culture being watered down ? I’d say not. Is India at risk of being a US lackey in Asia ? Maybe. But this is not a certainty by any means. If a truly equal business relationship can be formed. then it can only be good for both countrys.

    U.S. interests and Indian interests are not mutualy exclusive.

  8. xyz — on 4th March, 2006 at 8:17 pm  

    India and Iran have shared a good relationship, though, and close cultural contacts, and Iran must be feeling let down by India’s vote. Hopefully this will not damage relations irreversibly. Wonder what India said to Iran behind the scenes about its vote?

    On a lighter note, Bush playing cricket:

    Inzamam must have been chuckling over those priceless faces Bush makes!

  9. raz — on 4th March, 2006 at 8:20 pm  

    Check out Bush’s face in picture 5, and the kids looking at him. Funny stuff :)

    A nice straight action in picture no. 6 though.

  10. inders — on 4th March, 2006 at 8:32 pm  

    India and Iran have in the past enjoyed a relationship, but this relationship was always about the mutual distrust of Pakistan in that region.

    Historicaly it’s always a bad idea to take leads based on principles rather then self interest. Remember Nehru strongly supporting China and making concessions to the Chinese right throughout the 50’s only to be attacked by China in 1962 ?

  11. xyz — on 4th March, 2006 at 8:40 pm  

    Historicaly it’s always a bad idea to take leads based on principles rather then self interest. Remember Nehru strongly supporting China and making concessions to the Chinese right throughout the 50’s only to be attacked by China in 1962 ?

    I agree to a large extent. Just wondering if India-Iran have a relationship or can develop one that withstands the odd disagreement.

  12. Sunny — on 4th March, 2006 at 9:28 pm  

    It was a bit worrying to see Manmohan Singh being a little too deferential and obsequious to Bush and the U.S.,

    And this is my point. Other than the fact that the US is trying to tie them into a deal where it can keep making foreign policy demands with little in return (as is the case with the UK), I’m still trying to figure out what is the benefit to India.

    the Non Aligned Movement might have been a waste economically, but at least India developed its own nuclear capabilities and can sustain itself without needing too much external assistance. Hell, if they really wanted some technology, the Russians could have provided it - the two countries have a good history.

    I’m lamenting India’s relationship with Tehran. More than China it could have played a role in forcing the country to be less confrontational and working something out privately, but it said nothing, until the USA forced its hand into supporting it.

    I think the Iran - India relationship is more than skin deep. Both countries have quite strong secular traditions (despite constant harassment from the religious villager class)… and a recent poll showed that the people of both countries hold each other in high regard.

    Fareed Zakaria has written another article in this week’s Newsweek magazine with the usual ‘India is becoming a superpower’ stuff. He says that Indians are highly desposed towards Americans, but forgets to mention that only a few years ago they hated them.

    Ahh, how times change…. :)

  13. inders — on 4th March, 2006 at 10:26 pm  

    I wouldn’t call the government of Iran as secular (or the public of India for that matter), and we are talking about relationships between States arn’t we ?

  14. Sunny — on 4th March, 2006 at 10:32 pm  

    I was referring to the elite middle classes in the countries. Even though Iran does get constantly taken over by Mullahs, a lot of Iranians are quite secular and relaxed, specially the ones overseas (and have left the theocratic stifling environment). Even in Pakistan - the ruling and educated elites are quite secular and liberal. I didn’t mean the governments as such, since the Congress/BJP and the Iranian mullahs love using religion to further their own agendas.

  15. Dream Desi — on 4th March, 2006 at 10:45 pm  

    Fantastic post Sunny, and very perceptive. India was indigenously developing all these technologies and in effect building up our own advanced scientific community from the ground up- yet now, with this “deal”, the US effectively gets to call the shots and be the provider of the technology, IOW to do it their way and not ours.

    Even worse, the US has more than “hint-hinted” that there’s a quid pro quo here, that India will not be expected to back the US in, oh, say, an invasion of Iran (which may well include sending troops), and even worse, as a “counterbalancer” against China. Of all the stupid things India could do at this point, one of the worst would be to get suckered into a role as a China fighter.

    Frankly, in contrast to the idiot pundits in the US, I see China’s rise as potentially one of the best things for India economically, since this will help to provide an enormous market nearby for India’s goods as we ourselves industrialize. We have nothing to gain and everything to lose by somehow participating in some foolish US “encirclement” plan- the last thing we need is a military/diplomatic stand-off with another Asian giant that could potentially be our most important economic partner.

    I wouldn’t put too much stock in the US staying such a powerful nation much longer, either. Look at the ever-rising deficits there, look at the humiliation in Iraq- the world’s most powerful, multi-trillion dollar military unable to quash a few thousand scrappy insurgents. India has to stay aloof from alliances, and in fact, the more that I read about this deal, the more that I think the Parliament in New Delhi should categorically reject it.

  16. Dream Desi — on 4th March, 2006 at 10:55 pm  

    “the Non Aligned Movement might have been a waste economically, but at least India developed its own nuclear capabilities and can sustain itself without needing too much external assistance.”

    Yes, that’s exactly my sense as well. The NAM had its problems but, even given the tilt toward the USSR, it gave India a degree of independence in our affairs, to avoid being suckered by one side or another. The word that struck me in regard to Singh was precisely that- “obsequious.” He was like a… oh, I don’t wanna say it, but how else to? A, you know, like a desperate young woman selling services terribly in need of the apparent approval of her pimp. As though before Bush even said anything, Singh was ready with the, “yes, master.” Now, I think Singh’s a smart guy, but he just doesn’t have much of a spine or, for that matter, much self-confidence.

    I sense that Bush overall has a favorable impression of India and a respect for Indian culture, remember that Bush recently made that announcement pushing for expanded teaching of Hindi and other Indian languages in US schools. But the problem is, it’s the eggheads at State and Defense who are really behind this deal, and their motives are not necessarily in India’s interest.

    This isn’t to say that they *aren’t*; our interests could at least partially coincide, on things like bilateral trade (it’ll be great to finally get mangoes from back home in the States). There are other areas in which US interests conflict severely with those of India- e.g., recruiting India for a war against Iran, or getting India all worked up for some anti-Chinese pissing contest. We have nothing to gain from this, and we have to look at this deal with a sober eye, with our own interests first and foremost. As it currently stands, I think it should be rejected by the Indian Parliament.

  17. inders — on 5th March, 2006 at 12:29 am  

    The deal as it currently stands should be rejected ?

    I was under the impression no-one has seen the details of the deal ? Of course if it invovles an ‘Iran clause’ then it should be rejected in my opinon. But to write it completely off as against Indian interests based on speculation is not exactly a reasonable argument. All thats in the media is that India may be obliged to buy American miltary hardware. Something that India has wish for, for a long time. Ever since the Americans began selling to Pakistan at least.

    As for the US as an fading power. They had Vietnam and still opened up a gap between themselves and everyone else.

    India-Chin bhai-bhai ? Arn’t those two countries effectivly competing for the same markets ? I don’t see much Chinese investment going into India in the near future. Why is searching for foriegn investment being seen as the equilvent as whoring? Its a business deal, someones buying, someones selling. In this case, both are buying and both are selling. Singh is there to look after India’s interests and its his duty to get the best deal, not to pander to political fashions outside of his own country.

  18. xyz — on 5th March, 2006 at 12:46 am  

    All valid concerns. However, I don’t think this deal forces India to buy technology only from the United States. I think the other countries of that group (can’t remember the name) that provides nuclear material said they ‘re going to meet to discuss the deal. Also, India gets to keep its fast breeder reactors and any future ones off the table. Ironically, the US press and officials are annoyed because they think India got a lot and gave very little in return.

    I think NAM was good for its time, but the times have changed. Russia, although a good friend, cannot always be counted on because they too have changed their thinking. As for India being suckered into cornering China, while I think India is not naive when it comes to China, given china’s past behavior towards India, it’s also not naive enough to be used as a pawn against China. China-India trade is booming and soon the Chinese will have a lot to lose if they try to destabilize India. Let’s not forget that China too tries to box India in and encircle it via ties with Pakistan (that new port is an example), Nepal, Tibet (controlling that region) etc.

    And I think it’s a bit much to say Indians used to hate the United States. I think there was deep distrust and skepticism on both sides, but I’ve never got the sense that Indians ever hated the United States. Maybe certain sections of Indians do (the communists and others, but who also conveniently turn a blind eye to peccadilloes by their own foreign heroes), but not Indians as a whole.

    I think Manmohan Singh is smart but his major flaw is his overly deferential manner - to Sonia Gandhi and Bush and Blair etc. I hope that does not translate into making too many concessions to the U.S and that India can maintain its independent stand.

  19. Riz — on 5th March, 2006 at 12:55 am  

    oh how the world changes. It wasn’t so long ago that the US had imposed hefty sanctions on India for its nuclear antics.

    I think you are right to question what is happening here Sunny. The fuel of self-interest drives geopolitics, and there appears to be very little room to do what is ‘right’ for the common good.

    Iraq is a royal mess, Iran is pissed, Afghanistan is far from a bed of roses, Palestine have democratically elected Hama, and the threat of terrorism continues to loom large. With so many risks (many of which have their roots in past US interventionist policy); it the US must try to find as many friends in the East as it can, friends to help its causes and to aid in creating some semblance of stability in the region.

  20. Raw Data — on 5th March, 2006 at 1:19 am  

    As to comment #14.
    That’s all very nice and reassuring.
    But who controls the nukes?
    It’s the nutz.

  21. Manish H — on 5th March, 2006 at 4:08 am  

    Very interesting discussion, this is getting a lot of play throughout the Hindu blogosphere.

    Inders, on this point: “As for the US as an fading power. They had Vietnam and still opened up a gap between themselves and everyone else.”

    But you need to remember one crucial outcome of Vietnam that’s distorting- the US went off the gold standard in Nixon’s Administration b/c the Vietnam War was bankrupting the country’s treasury and it could no longer back its dollars with gold. This did buy the US a little time because the Saudis and other exporters for the most part maintained their oil sale proceeds in US investments (not the currency of sale, but where the Saudis put the money was important), based on a treaty in Nixon’s second term. But while this has delayed a US monetary crisis, it hasn’t prevented it- it’s only postponed the disaster. It’s in part because of this flawed monetary policy that the US is stuck in so much debt today.

    I minored in economics in college, and I actually lean more toward the Smith/Ricardo/Samuelson/Laffer conservative free trade side of things, but I’m sorry, it doesn’t matter how you spin it- the US is in for some serious economic doggy-doo in the next couple decades. That’s where Iraq really bites brutally, not military defeat itself which while unpleasant, can be borne by a country of the US’s size.

    The problem is in the financial obligations, because when you work through the numbers you have not only the immediate military costs of Iraq (already past $300 billion), but also all the costs for provided for those 25,000+ wounded veterans, many of them badly, plus all the costs for recruitment and assistance for a battered army. There was a Columbia economist who assessed the costs at over $2 trillion: http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/0110/dailyUpdate.html

    The US will be crossing the $9 trillion debt mark soon, and it’s only gonna get worse with the baby boomers shipping off to Florida en masse. On top of this, Warren Buffett and Bill Gates- hardly screaming leftist economists- have been angrily noting that the trade deficit is decimating the US production capacity and already having some nasty consequences. This is flat-out unsustainable, and the US will not be able to sustain much more in the way of FDI to India *or* to China for that matter, as it slips ever further into debt.

    That’s my point- India has to be very, very careful about becoming too entangled (and reliant upon) the US market itself, there has to be a lot of diversification toward other markets like the EU and, yes, to China. On the China point, I’m very ambivalent. I don’t exactly trust the intentions of the Chinese, but I don’t trust the intentions of the Americans, either. As for the 1962 war, yes, that’s a bitter memory, but it’s ridiculous to use this as a defining feature of our relations. Great Britain hurt us much more and killed many more people than any other country, by some estimates in the tens of millions with their policies: http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/southasia/History/British/Bayly.html

    The Brits knew exactly what they were doing when they taxed the peasants to death, seized Indian farmland en masse, levied horrific tariffs on Indian exports and even began siphoning off the proceeds from transactions *between Indians in India*, and even exporting food from India while Indians were starving- it utterly ruined our own fledgling economies in things like fabrics while killing millions. Churchill himself expressed his hatred for India on many occasions and had his own bloody hands in the Bengal Famine. Thus we’ve had a far more bitter and brutal history at the hands of the British than any other country, but do we have missiles pointed at Britain today because of this? No, of course not, because we have far more to gain from trade and friendship with Britain than we have from being hostile to them.

    China really could go in a lot of directions. They’re not necessarily competing with the same markets- in fact, China *is* a potential market for us, probably our biggest export sink especially if and when the US economy founders. For that matter, I don’t really accept the idea of export market competition as a driving force for geopolitical policy.

    After all, American companies routinely compete with each other for export markets, some winning and some not thriving as much, but ultimately the market competition helps everybody by fostering improvements in quality and innovation.

    One more thing to add, as this has come up elsewhere- the most powerful group in the US today consists of hard-core evangelical Christians who are *extremely* hostile to Hinduism and have made it a top priority to basically reduce Hinduism to a tiny local cult while converting India’s population away. Either that, or India becomes “the pagan archenemy” in their eyes. Someone was pointing out elsewhere that meetings of evangelical groups, especially those involved in missionary work, are filled with hateful spew against India and our culture. Bush so far hasn’t succumbed to all this constituency’s demands (remember that he also went against them by declaring that Muslims and Christians worship the same God, which enraged his base), but Bush’s days are numbered as the US President- he leaves in 2008. In comparison, the evangelicals are an organized, very powerful 100 million+ political group that gets stronger and more numerous every year, and India is very high up on their attack list. Interests have shifted before and they’ll shift again, and that’s why India shouldn’t cozy up too much to one power or another here. We need our own foreign policy and a trade policy that invites China, the US and Euro nations all into a trading system with US, for the gain of the group as a whole, and we have to avoid seeing any of these sides as “friends” or “enemies”.

  22. DilliGuy — on 5th March, 2006 at 7:02 am  

    Good to see British people disucssing this deal so seriously. Actually i am quite surprised never really seen a british blog or news site focusing so much on India.

  23. xyz — on 5th March, 2006 at 7:31 am  

    Manish, watch out.:) Sid and Jay are on Hindutva watch. They will be accusing you of being a fascist Hindutva for even mentioning Christian missionaries and evangelicals and their less than charitable view of Sanatana Dharma and their well-documented plans for India.

  24. Jay Singh — on 5th March, 2006 at 10:24 am  

    *pats xyz on the head to calm down his persecution complex*

    Drink a glass of milk and get over it boy.

  25. Neil — on 5th March, 2006 at 1:15 pm  

    Why are people so against India being invited to share the best kept secret in the world - US Nucluer power? The US is loosing friends in Europe and looks to gain elsewhere, India however is weary of any imperialistic ideals placed on them. It looks like the Bush administration pushed this deal through because they wanted to open up Indias nucluer for inspections….well that’s ok because India is not doing anything wrong and has (not much) to hide.

    India and china are the largest growing economies….the US has no interest in reducing emissions or agreeing to any Kyoto deal…so what’s the next best thing….to reduce other countries emissions via there technology. This is excellent for India as there economic growth will be green and cost effective, not to mention renewable. I only hope the Indian goverment introduces tough standards to avoid anything remotely like Chenoybl.

    Previously only Bill Clinton had embraced India, John Kerry endorsed the nucluer deal and now the republicians are pushing it through….not bad considering the US previous policys which were very unfriendly towards India.

    Ok people are going to be beating there chests and talking about there nukes and now the US DoD has said it is ready to meet the Indian Air Forces needs….what’s the big deal?? The worlds only superpower is trying to cosy up to India but the current goverment is smart and there leftist coalition will keep them in check. India is too large, independent and powerful to become any countries “bitch” but the US didnt open up nucluer know how to India because they thought they needed to throw a bigger bone to India then pakistan….future policy will be shaped around India and a global partnership will forge over the next 30 years. Don’t be suprised if you hear the words “were doing it for peace, security and spread democarcy” from Indian parliament.

    As for Pakistan, finally looks like the US has realised that India is a totally different country with totally different (not 100%) aspirations to Pakistan

  26. merlin — on 5th March, 2006 at 2:33 pm  

    The unfortunate outcome of the nuke deal is that, under extreme political pressure, President Musharraf will have to adopt a bellicose stance towards anything Indian. Every Pakistan government, military or democratic, has always fallen back on this age-old strategy of India-bashing to diverst the populace from raging domestic issues. Unfortunately, it almost always works because Pakistan’s inferiority complex arising from being consistently outperformed by it’s larger, more powerful neighbor is too deeply entrenched. In their eyes, India’s gain is their loss. Images of Bush buddying up with Manmohan Singh will be percieved as a slight by Pakistan. This has the potential of de-railing the India-Pak peace process. In the coming days, we shouldn’t be surprised if China cozies up with Pak to initiate some arms deal.

  27. Tanvir — on 5th March, 2006 at 4:58 pm  

    Guess i’ll add my 2pence worth although I shall digress a little….

    As far as I’m aware the Indian government in response to questions of loyalty to their longtime friend Iran, put its hands up in congress and said to the effect of ‘Yes I know we are stabbing Iran in the back…but we need this co-operation from the US, we are still going to be mates with Iran” [im sure they’ll understand?!]

    Anyway, where does the other south east Asian country come into this visit from the Bush ? Well India compiled a dossier saying effectively Bangladesh is on its way to being ruled by something like the Taiban and handed it to Bush. It just about echoed exactly what the Bangladeshi opposition leader (known as India’s chief ambassador in BD) has been saying from the day she lost the last election. So no doubt India wants their woman back in power, especially since China recently overtook India as Bangladesh’s largest import source (officially anyway - the amount of smuggled imports from India is still estimated to outdo China immensely).

    As for Bangladesh’s moves… well the government has managed to arrest most of the major leaders of the JMB organization responsible for the recent wave of terror, as well as cripple its finances. Funny how the Anti-Bangladesh camp don’t print these stories? Seriously though, the speed at which these JMB lot and their finance networks were hunted down could teach the CIA a thing or two.

    The KEY moment being just a couple of days ago, in the middle of Bush’s South Asia tour the government caught the chief leader of the JMB, this guy is like the Bin Laden of Bangladesh. There is speculation that the security services had figured out his whereabouts over a week ago, but the opportunity to let him be, just watch him and catch him when Bush is next-door was too good to be true - so that’s exactly what they did. Did this anti-terrorism charade counter the even more farce full Indian dossier? I guess we’ll find out soon enough, with Bangladesh’s elections around the corner, I wonder who Bush will pick.

    The Prime Minister of Bangladesh specially addressed the nation after catching of this guy, a bit like what Blair would do if he had to suddenly announce the country going to war. The thing is the Prime Minster and her Jamaat-e-Islam allies have been denouncing the behavior of the terrorists since day one, and denouncing this type of behavior for even longer. After all, the terrorists are calling for the ruling party and its Jammat-e-Islam allies’ downfall! But the Anti-Bangladesh camp group of idiots still maintains the government is harboring these terrorists who are terrorizing in order to bring down the government! You would really want to pick a much harsher word than idiot, until you realize the Anti-Bangladesh/Anti-Islam camp is so widespread that there are plenty of people to take this misleading side of the story and waffle on than research into the matter and tell the truth.

    To the Anti-Bangladesh camp (as I call it) this catching of the JMB leader is probably disappointing as they have to go looking for other reasons to write stories amounting to calling for the downfall of this current government which means replacing it by the pro-India Awami League. The Indian delivery of their ‘dodgy dossier’ to Bush in this tour seems to be completely ignored by the media, and to be honest rightfully so.

  28. xyz — on 5th March, 2006 at 5:57 pm  

    “Drink a glass of milk and get over it boy.”

    Well, at least some of us have moved beyond your favorite infant formula.

  29. Al-Hack — on 5th March, 2006 at 6:31 pm  

    Me thinks Musharraf has enough trouble at home to worry about what his means for India. You nver know tho - his solution might be a bit of rabble-rousing with India just to establish his credentials. Such is politics.

    Neil the USa is losing friends all over but that doesn’t mean Indians should bend over when the Americans are need a bit of ego boosting to make sure they still have friends.

    For military and energy, this agreement means little. A lot of India’s energy is lost through bad infrastructure (old wiring) and people stealing it for their own use (and not paying for it). To deal with both India needs more investment to bring its existing infrastructure up to scratch. Just building more nuclear stations ain’t going to cut it.

  30. xyz — on 5th March, 2006 at 6:42 pm  

    A lot of India’s energy is lost through bad infrastructure (old wiring) and people stealing it for their own use (and not paying for it). To deal with both India needs more investment to bring its existing infrastructure up to scratch. Just building more nuclear stations ain’t going to cut it.

    Anil Agarwal of Vedanta Resources says the govt. called him in and asked him to help fix that very problem (leaking electricity). He claims this will be done over the next couple of years. Let’s see.

  31. raz — on 5th March, 2006 at 9:25 pm  

    Even after Sunny expressly gave this warning at the start of the thread:

    “I will not tolerate this thread turning into a India v Pakistan slagging match like the last one - any message going down that route will be deleted”

    The likes of Merlin can’t control their anti-Pakistani hatred. I think it’s very clear who has the inferiority complex here.

  32. DAtley — on 8th March, 2006 at 7:05 pm  

    stabbing iran in the back?
    Iran stabbed india several times.
    On the wars with pakistan iran supported pakistan.
    It did even loan its fighter aircraft to pakistan to fight against india.
    What ever you seem like another confused kid blabbing about issues you have no idea about.

  33. Sunny — on 8th March, 2006 at 7:32 pm  

    Seeing as Iran and Pakistan were at each other’s throats over the conflict in Afghanistan (the former backing the Northern Alliance, and the latter a friend of the Taliban).

    And Iran is Shia while Pakistan is Sunni (with Pakistan havng a terrible record of protecting Shia minorities) - I highly doubt your assertion.

  34. DAtley — on 8th March, 2006 at 8:02 pm  

    “Seeing as Iran and Pakistan were at each other’s throats over the conflict in Afghanistan (the former backing the Northern Alliance, and the latter a friend of the Taliban).”
    The northern alliance had a larger support from india than iran. you should educate yourself on who karzai sent to envoys to india and iran.
    And the assertion regarding wepaon supports are true.
    What can i suggest read…
    Regarding pipleline
    India itself is somewhat against the pipeline as the pakistanis had asked india to pay for the entire pipeline.
    India refused and decision got stalled. It only picked up
    some consideration when malaysians decided to loan pakistan the funds to make it, The reaction to that offer has been mixed.

  35. Sunny — on 8th March, 2006 at 8:07 pm  

    The northern alliance had a larger support from india than iran.

    That doesn’t detract from the fact that historically India and Iran have had a common enemy, so to speak, in Pakistan. Thinking that Iran and Pakistan are close because of some global Ummah ideology is being naive. If you have some evidence to show Iran stabbed India in the back then I’d be interested in reading it.

    India itself is somewhat against the pipeline as the pakistanis had asked india to pay for the entire pipeline.

    Err that has nothing to do with India / Iran relations, does it?

  36. DAtley — on 8th March, 2006 at 8:13 pm  

    “That doesn’t detract from the fact that historically India and Iran have had a common enemy, ”
    Then why did the iranians back the pakis in 71 and 65.?

    “Err that has nothing to do with India / Iran relations, does it?”
    Yes it does from indias side the deal with iran is on shaky grounds is a pipe dreams of sort, which may never get anywhere.
    where as the deal with US is a deal in a sense with N5 and NSG. It opens up the power sector which the gas deal would not do. Then there are defense considerations, The local uranium can be used for weapons.

  37. raz — on 8th March, 2006 at 8:17 pm  

    China to invest $12 billion in Pakistan


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