Jeffrey Lewis of Arms Control Wonk reads the tea leaves and wonders whether India won’t try to use the 123 Agreement (if it’s ever approved) as license for a new round of nuclear weapons testing. There’s reason to believe that India’s last round of tests in 1998 did not include a successfully detonated hydrogen bomb. Lewis speculates that Indian PM Manmohan Singh might be under pressure to fill that technological gap. It’s hard to imagine exactly what regional consequences that would have, but I think it’s safe to say there aren’t very many positive ones in the range of possibilities. [...]
The first I heard that New York City’s manhole covers were made in India was in this offhanded TPM post by Josh Marshall last November. Now it turns out that Indian-made manhole covers are being stolen (from America, but also from Europe and Mumbai) because of the Peking Olympics. 2point6billion.com’s got the details, including what to do about the safety risk of open sewer manholes.
With a whimper went President Bush’s last, best chance for a positive legacy in international affairs. Last week administration officials conceded to the Financial Times that India would not approve a nuclear cooperation pact with Washington during Bush’s tenure. In March 2006, President Bush signed a nuclear agreement in New Delhi designed to pull the world’s largest democracy closer to the world’s last superpower and dramatically alter Asia’s balance of power. With Asia’s economic rise, it is widely assumed that the continent’s political emergence will follow in the coming decades. By agreeing to cooperate with India on nuclear issues — [...]