The New Triangular Diplomacy: India, China and America at Sea

The New Triangular Diplomacy: India, China and America at Sea

0 Likes
42 comments

As in the Cold War, so in the current power play between the United States and China, the rest of Asia will simply not submit itself to the discipline of a bipolar framework. Asia will actively shape and be shaped by the emerging strategic dynamic between Washington and Beijing.

Asia is home to many large states that are wedded to nationalism and territorial sovereignty, opposed to local ambitions for regional hegemony,committed to a measure of autonomy from the great powers, and determined to promote greater economic integration with each other. These are competing imperatives that do not sit well with each other but do define the contradictory nature of Asia’s rise.

One of these important regional powers is India—the third largest economy in Asia, and the fourth biggest spender on defense in the Indo-Pacific after the United States, China and Japan.

India’s potential could contribute significantly to the new balance of power in Asia as recognized by both Washington and Beijing. U.S. Defense Secretary, Leon Panetta, was in Delhi last June declaring India as a “lynchpin”in the U.S. pivot to Asia.

The Chinese defense minister Liang Guanglie was soon knocking at Delhi’s doors, trying to soothe India’s growing concerns about Beijing’s rise.

Delhi’s cautious response to America’s Asian pivot underlines India’s open-ended and deliberative strategy in dealing with the twists and turns in the U.S. strategy towards China.

India has had a complex and difficult relationship with China since they became neighbors in the middle of the 20th century. And it is only over the last decade that Delhi’s ties with the United States have begun to warm.

India has not had a direct conflict of interest with the United States during the Cold War, but the two have had deep differences on global and regional issues.

Comments
42

[...] Of course, similar interests could be an impetus for strategic collaboration between India and China. In this case, however, they are just as likely to spark a maritime security dilemma. Capabilities that will enable New Delhi to project power and protect SLOCs could also be used to threaten Beijing’s seaborne trade, leading China to further develop its so-called “string of pearls.” Likewise, China’s efforts to increase its military presence in the Indian Ocean region are already viewed as an early form of encirclement in India, prompting countermoves by New Delhi. [...]

Indian
March 16, 2013 at 19:10

Anjan, you are talking with a typical communal hindu mindset. 

Share your thoughts

Your Name
required
Your Email
required, but not published
Your Comment
required

Newsletter
Sign up for our weekly newsletter
The Diplomat Brief