NEW DELHI — The controversy caused in Islamabad by the Kerry-Lugar Bill, which authorizes an annual grant of $1.5 billion to Pakistan for military and non-military purposes over the next five years, is by now well-known. But because of its implications for the entire South Asian region, the bill has also been greeted with alarm in India. The bill’s explicit goal, as stated by the U.S., is to shore up Pakistan’s civilian government under President Asif Ali Zardari by providing monetary assistance to build roads, schools and other infrastructure. The implicit hope is that this will turn widespread Pakistani antipathy […]
NEW DELHI — India has long seen a reconstruction role for itself in Afghanistan, despite its lack of direct military involvement in the country. Its interests there are obvious: A strong Kabul that keeps the Taliban — and by extension al-Qaida — in check also ensures that jihadi forces in Pakistan do not use Afghanistan as a backyard assembly line for militants who can then be turned against India, and the rest of the world. But New Delhi is not finding its Afghan sojourn easy. Earlier this month, the Indian embassy in Kabul was attacked for the second time in […]
Following the Nuclear Supplier Group’s waiver in September 2008, India seems ready to take its place in the world of nuclear trade — not just as a purchaser, but as a supplier, too. It appears that Kazakhstan is in line to be India’s first customer for indigenously developed 220 megawatt electric (MWe) Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors (PHWRs). The proposed sale seems likely to follow the civil nuclear agreement signed by the two countries in January 2009. In addition to Kazakhstan, a number of Southeast Asian and African countries are also in serious talks with the Indian state-owned nuclear industry major, […]
As reported by Rajiv Chandrasekaran, the Afghanistan War strategic review officially spirals into “crash and burn” mode. For all of its mindboggling revelations, one graf from the article leaped out at me: Less than three weeks after Obama took office, the White House selectedformer CIA officer Bruce Riedel to review U.S. policy towardAfghanistan and Pakistan. Riedel was told to consult broadly but actquickly: The president wanted his conclusions by mid-March, before aNATO summit in Europe early in April. (Emphasis added.) Of course, that was the combination “first date/honeymoon” summit where President Barack Obama expected to use his post-election political capital […]
On Worldfocus, Daniel Markey of the Council on Foreign Relations saysthis week’s bombing of the Indian Embassy in Kabul could haveimplications for India-Pakistan relations, as well as for Pakistan’sfocus on its internal Taliban threat. “The potential for a broaderregional destabilization is certainly there,” he said.
NEW DELHI — The recent U.S.-sponsored United Nations Security Council resolution calling on all nations to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) has not been well-received in India. The resolution, adopted last week at a Security Council session led by U.S. President Barack Obama, will ratchet up the pressure on India to sign a document that it considers grossly unfair. In fact India’s Special Envoy on Climate Change Shyam Saran conveyed as much to Obama, stating that because the NPT’s norms are “discriminatory” and “conflict with India’s sovereignty,” the treaty is unacceptable […]