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  Opinion   Edit  14 Nov 2023  AA Edit | India, US deepen defence ties

AA Edit | India, US deepen defence ties

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Nov 14, 2023, 12:07 am IST
Updated : Nov 14, 2023, 12:07 am IST

India is being nurtured by the US now as a counterweight to China’s dominance of the eastern and southern parts of the world

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin during a bilateral meeting, in New Delhi, Friday, Nov. 10, 2023. (PTI Photo)
 Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin during a bilateral meeting, in New Delhi, Friday, Nov. 10, 2023. (PTI Photo)

India has sent out a very clear message to China, which predictably is fuming.  By hosting the 2+2 meet among the Indian defence and foreign ministers Rajnath Singh and S. Jaishankar and their US counterparts Lloyd J. Austin III and Antony Blinken, India has emphasised that it will be aligning more and more with the USA.

India is being nurtured by the US now as a counterweight to China’s dominance of the eastern and southern parts of the world and China is displeased enough to sound out dire and an illogical warning about a threat of destruction. It is China’s intransigence on the border issue that has pushed India into the US embrace.

It is not just the depth of India-US diplomatic ties that were stressed in another warm meeting between the four ministers last week in New Delhi. It is the expanding defence ties that is driving the bee in China’s bonnet to buzz.

Much of the technology and hardware to be transferred for co-production will be used by India to buttress its defence forces against its prickly neighbour that has not thought it fit to address all the festering border issues since 2017 and the 2020 skirmishes that changed the defence dynamics for India.

Expanding defence ties will soon cover the joint production of Stryker armoured vehicles equipped with anti-tank missiles and that is just one of the many projects in which India and the US military-defence-industrial complex will be collaborating. Co-produced Predator drones for the Indian Navy is another strategic area in weaponry that will enhance India’s presence in the nearest oceans.

The collaborations signify acceptance of the fact that India also wishes to reduce its traditional dependence on Russia, more so as the Ukraine invasion has changed the realities on the ground regarding supply of Russian equipment.

The condemnation of terror groups in the joint statement is in line with India’s settled policy of opposing terror in any form at every global platform.

However divergent the opinions on the two wars that are raging now, there is no condoning the weaponisation of terror strikes.

Tags: india us ties, aa edit, antony blinken