Wednesday, June 29, 2005

IHT: US, India Sign 10-Year Defense Pact

Thanks to Pundita for this International Herald Tribune article announcing a 10-year defense pact between the US and India. The pact involves "joint weapons production, greater sharing of technology and intelligence as well as an increased trade in arms." Former Indian foreign secretary Lalit Mansingh said, "China is like the ghost at the banquet - an unspoken presence that no one wants to talk about", driving the pact.
"No one in Washington or Delhi would admit that this has anything to do with China," he continued with a reference to ideological neoconservatives in the United States. "But the U.S. neocons say that the long-term threat to the U.S. can only be from China, and India also realizes that it has a neighbor with whom it has border disputes, whose economic and military growth is greater than its own."
Contradictions with U.S. military arms sales to Pakistan will no doubt complicate this relationship.