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Old Saturday, May 03, 2008
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Default Americas leaning heavivly towards India

Nicolas Burns is Under Secretary of State, that is equivalent to no. 2 postion in State department. this article published in Foreign Affairs Magzine clearly indicate American preffernece for India.

America’strategic Opportunity With India
By R. Nicholas Burns,
From Foreign Affairs, November/December 2007

As we Americans consider our future role in the world, the rise of a
democratic and increasingly powerful India represents a singularly
positive opportunity to advance our global interests. There is a
tremendous
strategic upside to our growing engagement with India. That is why
building a close U.S.-India partnership should be one of the United
States'
highest priorities for the future. It is a unique opportunity with
real
promise for the global balance of power.

We share an abundance of political, economic, and military interests
with India today. Our open societies face similar threats from
terrorism
and organized crime. Our market-based economies embrace trade and
commerce as engines of prosperity. Our peoples value education and a
strong
work ethic. We share an attachment to democracy and individual rights
founded on an instinctive mistrust of authoritarianism. And in an age
of
anti-Americanism, according to the most recent Pew Global Attitudes
survey, nearly six in ten Indians view the United States favorably.

In the past decade, both President Bill Clinton and President George W.
Bush recognized this opportunity and acted to construct a completely
new foundation for U.S. ties with India. Our relationship with India
now
is our fastest-developing friendship with any major country in the
world. I have visited India eight times in the last two years to help
construct this partnership. I have seen firsthand the remarkable
growth in
trust between the leaderships of the two countries. I have also
observed the corresponding explosion in private-sector ties, the
greatest
strength in the relationship. The progress between the United States
and
India has been remarkable: a new and historic agreement on civil
nuclear
energy, closer collaboration on scientific and technological
innovation, burgeoning trade and commercial links, common efforts to
stabilize
South Asia, and a growing U.S.-India campaign to promote stable,
well-governed democracies around the world. And the United States is
only just
beginning to realize the benefits of this relationship for its
interests in South and East Asia.

Still, there are obstacles that the United States and India need to
overcome before they can attain a true global partnership. The two
countries need to work more effectively to counter terrorism, drug
trafficking, and nuclear proliferation. Progress so far has shown how
effectively
we can work together to settle past differences and meet future
challenges. If it is sustained, we will have an even greater
opportunity to
put American and Indian principles and power together and shape a more
stable, peaceful, and prosperous global community.


MISSED OPPORTUNITIES

The realization of this vision of a broad U.S.-India friendship has
long eluded U.S. presidents and Indian prime ministers. When India
broke
free from the British Raj 60 years ago, it was entirely reasonable to
think that the United States would become one of India's foremost
friends
and partners. President Franklin Roosevelt had been an ardent champion
of India's cause; many Americans saw the vision of the United States'
separation from the British Empire reflected in the hopes and dreams
of
Indian freedom fighters.

But despite some successes in those early years, U.S.-India relations
during the postwar period consisted largely of missed opportunities.
The
two countries found a common connection as large multiethnic,
multireligious democracies. The United States was India's largest aid
donor in
the first decades after its independence; collaborated on India's
extraordinary "green revolution," which helped end India's famines;
and
rushed military assistance to India during its border war with China
in
1962. Yet none of this was enough to bridge the chasm of the Cold War.
From the American point of view, Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal
Nehru's
nonalignment policy and warm relations with the Soviet Union made
close
political cooperation unachievable, and Nehru's mostly autarkic
socialist economic policies limited trade and investment ties.
President
Richard Nixon's "tilt" toward Pakistan in 1971 and India's "Smiling
Buddha"
nuclear test in 1974 planted the United States and India squarely on
opposite sides of the political and nonproliferation barricades.

As is so often the case with proud and great countries, this rather
bitter history overwhelmed efforts to mend fences and postponed the
long-desired partnership between India and the United States. Even as
the
Cold War came to an end, Washington focused on deepening its alliances
with Europe and Japan and engaging a rising China. India was left off
the
list of U.S. foreign policy priorities.

But all that is history. Over the past 15 years, three significant
developments have helped bring about the recent dramatic strengthening
of
U.S.-India ties. First, the end of the Cold War removed the
U.S.-Soviet
rivalry as the principal focus of U.S. foreign relations and the
rationale for India's nonalignment policy. Second, India's historic
economic
reforms of the early 1990s, led by Manmohan Singh, then finance
minister and now prime minister, opened India to the global economy
for the
first time and catalyzed the extraordinary boom in private-sector
trade
and investment between the United States and India that continues
today.
Finally, as the twenty-first century began, the global order started
to undergo a tectonic shift, and India's emergence as a global force
was
obvious for all to see.

The arrival of globalization as a defining feature of the age caused
Americans to understand that Washington needs like-minded global
allies
to succeed in an increasingly interdependent world. As Washington
thought about how best to contend with the greatest of globalization's
challenges -- international drug and other criminal cartels,
trafficking in
women and children, climate change, and especially the rise of
terrorism
and its potential intersection with weapons of mass destruction -- it
became clear to most of us in the U.S. government that we needed to
combine forces with powerful emerging countries such as India (Brazil,
Indonesia, and South Africa are others) to respond to these threats.
In
this radically changed global landscape, the basic interests of India
and
the United States -- the world's largest democracy and the world's
oldest -- increasingly converged.

That this new U.S.-India partnership is supported by a bipartisan
consensus in both countries considerably strengthens the prospects for
its
success. In India, both the ruling Indian National Congress and the
opposition Bharatiya Janata Party have worked for over a decade to
elevate
India's ties with the United States. In the United States, shortly
after the beginning of India's economic liberalization, President
Clinton
signaled Washington's desire to forge a new era of commerce and
investment between the two countries. And after India's May 1998
nuclear tests,
then Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott engaged India's then
foreign minister, Jaswant Singh, in 14 rounds of talks over two and a
half
years. Talbott's negotiations with Singh were Washington's first truly
sustained strategic engagement with the Indian leadership.

When he entered office in 2001, President Bush recognized early on the
power and importance of India's large and vibrant democracy in global
politics. He essentially doubled the United States' strategic bet on
India, pursuing an uncommonly ambitious and wide-ranging opening
toward it
and displaying the courage and foresight to take on the complex
nonproliferation issues that had separated the two countries for three
decades. President Bush called for the two countries to jump-start
their
relationship in four strategic areas: civil nuclear energy, civilian
space
programs, high-tech commerce, and missile defense.


NUCLEAR SPRING

When Condoleezza Rice visited India in March 2005, shortly after taking
office as secretary of state, she set out to lay a new cornerstone for
the transformed relationship. She emphasized to Prime Minister Singh
that the United States would alter its long-held framework that tied
and
balanced its relations with "India-Pakistan." We would effectively
"de-hyphenate" our South Asia policy by seeking highly individual
relations with both India and Pakistan. That meant an entirely new and
comprehensive engagement between the United States and India.
Secretary Rice
also told Prime Minister Singh that the United States would break with
long-standing nonproliferation orthodoxy and work to establish full
civil
nuclear cooperation with energy-starved India.

At the start of President Bush's second term, we knew that the nuclear
issue was the proverbial elephant in the room in the U.S. relationship
with India. We also understood that resolving it would allow us to
define a more truly ambitious partnership. India had decided not to
participate in the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) in the 1970s,
and the
United States and other NPT countries had, for three decades,
sanctioned India for developing a nuclear weapons program outside the
NPT
regime. The result was India's isolation from the rest of the world on
all
nuclear issues.

Yet by 2005 it had become clear -- especially to those of us who wished
to see a more effective nonproliferation regime -- that this state of
affairs benefited no one. One of the world's largest and most peaceful
states with advanced nuclear technology was outside the regime,
whereas
countries that cheated, such as Iran and North Korea, had been inside
it. Despite India's outsider nuclear status, it had been a largely
responsible steward of its nuclear material and had played by the
rules of
a system to which it did not belong. By bringing India into the
nonproliferation regime, we would modernize and strengthen it while
allowing
India and the United States to forge a larger and more ambitious
partnership.

When Prime Minister Singh visited Washington in July 2005, President
Bush made this bold proposition: after 30 years, the United States was
prepared to offer India the benefits of full civil nuclear energy
cooperation. We would not assist India's nuclear weapons program, but
we would
help India construct new power plants and would provide it with the
latest in nuclear fuel and technology to run them. In New Delhi in
March
2006, President Bush and Prime Minister Singh announced the
realization
of this vision through the U.S.-India Civil Nuclear Cooperation
Initiative.

Nine months later, in December 2006, a strong bipartisan majority in
Congress passed the Hyde Act, which approved the initiative,
permitting
American investment in India's civil nuclear power industry. These
steps
marked a huge change in U.S. and global thinking about how to work
with India. They transformed India overnight from a target of the
international nonproliferation regime to a stakeholder in it. Beyond
those
first moves, the U.S. Atomic Energy Act required a formal agreement to
lay
the legal basis for bilateral nuclear collaboration. We concluded the
"123 agreement" this July, after long and sometimes difficult
negotiations.

The benefits of these historic agreements are very real for the United
States. For the first time in three decades, India will submit its
entire civil nuclear program to international inspection by
permanently
placing 14 of its 22 nuclear power plants and all of its future civil
reactors under the safeguards of the International Atomic Energy
Agency
(IAEA). Within a generation, nearly 90 percent of India's reactors
will
likely be covered by the agreement. Without the arrangement, India's
nuclear power program would have remained a black box. With it, India
will
be brought into the international nuclear nonproliferation mainstream.

Some have criticized this dramatic break from past orthodoxy,
especially the decision to grant India consent rights to reprocess
spent fuel.
But in fact, the United States has granted reprocessing consent
before,
to Japan and the European Atomic Energy Community. Moreover, these
rights will come into effect only once India builds a state-of-the-art
reprocessing facility fully monitored by the IAEA and we agree on the
specific arrangements and procedures for it. The agreement with India
will
not assist the country's nuclear weapons program in any way. And
should
India decide to conduct a nuclear test in the future, then the United
States would have the right under U.S. law to seek the return of all
nuclear fuel and technology shipped by U.S. firms.

In short, the civil nuclear agreement serves the national security
interests of the United States. It has already become the symbolic
centerpiece of the new U.S.-India friendship and is wildly popular
among
millions of Indians who see it as a mark of U.S. respect for India.
Despite
the objections voiced by the Communist Party of India in August of
this
year, the Indian government has stood firm and is meeting its
commitments under the agreement. This agreement will deepen the
strategic
partnership, create new opportunities for U.S. businesses in India,
enhance
global energy security, and reduce India's carbon emissions. It will
also send a powerful message to nuclear outlaws such as Iran: if you
play
by the rules, as India has, you will be rewarded; if you do not, you
will face sanctions and isolation.

Several further steps remain. India must conclude a safeguards
agreement with the IAEA, following which the 45-nation Nuclear
Suppliers Group
must change its international practice to permit free civil nuclear
trade with India. Then Congress will vote a final time to permit, once
and
for all, U.S. firms to work with India to construct nuclear power
plants to meet its need for electricity.

During the two years of this diplomatic marathon of negotiations, my
Indian counterparts and I worked more closely and intensively than we
ever had before. We were sometimes forced to dig deep into our
reserves of
creativity and tenacity. But the outcome demonstrates that Americans
and Indians can work together to achieve important goals on the most
vital international issues -- something once thought impossible.


SECURING SOUTH ASIA

Another fundamental change in the United States' relationship with
India has been newfound cooperation in South Asia. Since the attacks
of
September 11, 2001, South Asia has been viewed in Washington as a
region
of vital importance to our future. It is the region from which the
United States was attacked by al Qaeda. It is home to Pakistan, the
most
important U.S. partner in the struggle against al Qaeda. And it is
home to
the United States' friend and partner Afghanistan.

India is, of course, the region's largest country and its dominant
economic and military power. We are now working closely with India for
the
very first time to limit conflict and build long-term peace throughout
South Asia. We see India as a stabilizing force in an often violent
and
unstable part of the world.

The United States and India share a particular interest in defeating
the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan and in helping to support that
country's fledgling democracy. India has made important contributions
there. It has pledged over $750 million for reconstruction, making it
the
largest South Asian donor to the government of President Hamid Karzai.
It has helped renovate and build hospitals, granaries, and schools; it
is training Afghan parliamentary officials in governance and
parliamentary processes; and it has committed to building dams, roads,
power
projects, and a new parliament building. India's continuing
involvement in
Afghanistan is essential to that country's stabilization and long-term
success, and cooperation between the United States and India in
Afghanistan has been close and encouraging.

In Sri Lanka, the United States and India have come together to call
for a political settlement with the Tamil minority through a
power-sharing agreement so as to end the island's bloody conflict. Our
countries
have stood together in denouncing the terrorism and human rights
violations that have plagued Sri Lanka during the past year. In
Bangladesh, we
share both influence and similar concerns over instability. We have
encouraged the caretaker government there to restore democracy and
fulfill
the desire of Bangladeshis to replace corruption with good governance.
And to the north, we are shoring up Nepal's democracy: helping the
government restore its reach into the countryside and supporting the
efforts of the Election Commission to hold constituent assembly
elections.

The United States places a very high priority on improving relations
between India and Pakistan. It is in the United States' strong
interest
to see the two countries develop a lasting and productive peace,
including by resolving the conflict over Kashmir -- a potential
nuclear
flashpoint. This is a vital U.S. interest and is essential to securing
South
Asian stability. Both President Bush and Secretary Rice have made it a
high priority to encourage both countries to overcome the historic and
deep enmity between them. We will continue to support the promising
"composite dialogue" between the two governments as well as efforts to
stimulate greater contacts between the people on opposite sides of the
Line of Control. Prime Minister Singh and Pakistani President Pervez
Musharraf have achieved more in quiet talks toward resolving their
bilateral
difficulties than anyone thought possible a few years ago. That the
composite dialogue continues as a channel of discussion marks
remarkable
progress from the 1999 Kargil conflict and from 2002, when the United
States feared that India and Pakistan would go to war. In this light,
the gradually increasing civil-society contacts between the two
countries
offer the prospect of a slow but sure development of constituencies
for peace on both sides. A considerable peace dividend awaits both
India
and Pakistan if they can sustain this newfound momentum.

Leadership in South Asia is, of course, just one part of India's
increasingly important global role. As India is both a rising power
and a
democracy, we in Washington view its growing influence in the world as
broadly congruent with U.S. interests. Both countries seek to promote
democratic principles and institutions around the world because we
know
that stable democracies are largely peaceful and better able to manage
the
consequences of globalization. Whether it comes to ensuring that
China's rise is peaceful or preventing the Muslim world from turning
its
back on modernity or stopping rising economies from being ruined by
rising
temperatures, it is hard to think of two other countries with as much
at stake or as much to offer to global stability.

With this in mind, the United States and India have worked hard to come
together on global issues in recent years. Prime Minister Singh and
President Bush jointly launched the UN Democracy Fund in 2005 and are
its
largest contributors. The fund is already having a tangible impact,
having awarded more than 100 grants to civil-society organizations in
countries that are democratizing or strengthening their democracies.
Both
nations are also active leaders in the Community of Democracies, a
group of over 120 nations committed to assisting other countries on
their
path to democratization.

Together, the United States and India have also made real advances in
cooperation on health issues. India is an important participant in the
International Partnership on Avian and Pandemic Influenza, which has
helped put avian flu on the national agendas of countries around the
world. India and the United States are also actively involved in
fighting
HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases. We are working together to
eradicate polio and to promote maternal and child health. We are
natural
global partners joined by a comparative advantage in science, advanced
information technologies, and health services.


A LONG JOURNEY

Despite the enormous promise of the U.S. relationship with India, there
are still considerable hurdles ahead as we seek to form a truly
effective global partnership. First, it is critical that Americans
consider
their future with India realistically, guarding against undue optimism
and excessive expectations. Differing histories, cultures, and
geographies will make for a healthy but sometimes argumentative
friendship. The
United States and India will need to work together more effectively in
four primary areas: military and intelligence, agriculture and
education, energy and the environment, and freedom and democracy.

The first challenge will be to counter terrorism, drug trafficking, and
nuclear proliferation, and to do so, the two countries will have to
strengthen their military, intelligence, and law enforcement
relationships. The potential of U.S.-India military cooperation became
clear in the
aftermath of the December 2004 tsunami in South and Southeast Asia,
when the Indian and U.S. navies and air forces were among the first to
rush humanitarian assistance to those in need. Since then, the
U.S.-India
defense relationship has become much more active, including annual
joint air force and naval exercises. Interoperability between the two
militaries has also increased, helping to preserve stability in Asia.
India's robust navy travels the sea-lanes linking the Middle East and
Africa
with East Asia, and we are working with it to expand the surveillance
of suspect cargo vessels and real-time communication. Washington is
also increasing military education and training exchanges,
particularly in
peacekeeping, an area in which India is a major global force.

Military cooperation is impeded by the fact that much of the Indian
military still uses a considerable amount of Soviet-era equipment.
Barriers to closer coordination in training and the sharing of
military
doctrine remain in both governments. A significant Indian defense
purchase
from the United States -- for example, of the new advanced multirole
combat aircraft that the Indian air force seeks -- would be a great
leap
forward and signal a real commitment to long-term military
partnership.

Meanwhile, the United States and India must also achieve more advanced
cooperation on counterterrorism, intelligence, and law enforcement,
based on the recognition that terrorism is a central threat to both
countries. This means, among other things, working more closely to
disrupt
the flow of funds to terrorists. We also urge India to participate in
our
Container Security Initiative (which, among other things, allows the
United States to check suspect U.S.-bound cargo containers at their
foreign ports of departure) and to unleash its proven expertise in
information technology to meet a new generation of threats from
cyberspace.

The second major challenge is for the United States to help India
address some of its most urgent domestic problems, particularly in
agriculture and education. When Prime Minister Singh first met with
President
Bush in 2005, he expressed a strong desire to work with the United
States
on a second green revolution to help India's rural poor. This is an
urgent task: despite India's progress, nearly 700 million of its
citizens
-- 25 percent of the world's poor -- live on less than $2 a day.
Americans such as the Nobel Prize-winning scientist Norman Borlaug
were key
actors in India's first green revolution, and Prime Minister Singh has
suggested that the United States' famous midwestern land-grant
institutions could assist India through the implementation of
public-private
partnerships, market-oriented agriculture, and new agricultural
methods.
U.S. private-sector expertise and investment could help India create
the cold-storage facilities, supply chains, and food-processing
technology that form the backbone of a sophisticated agricultural
market. The
two countries could also collaborate on spreading environmentally
sustainable farming methods, such as land conservation and
water-resource
management.

As India's rural poor become integrated into global markets, the United
States and India must also find a way to bridge differences on global
trade. We have differed with India on critical issues during the long
Doha Round of trade negotiations. We continue to believe that the
completion of the Doha Round talks offers the best hope for expanding
global
economic growth and prosperity. An Indian global trade policy that
increases liberalization and stimulates significant and sustained
trade in
agriculture and manufactured goods would benefit all, and so would the
opening of India's retail, banking, and insurance sectors.

As with agriculture, the United States helped establish some of India's
finest educational institutions, including one of the Indian
Institutes of Management and one of the Indian Institutes of
Technology. Now an
even more ambitious education agenda with India is needed. Education
has been and will be a driving engine of U.S.-India relations -- it
will
constitute the foundation of a shared future and be a wellspring of
personal relationships and dreams that go far beyond
government-to-government cooperation. There are now more students from
India at colleges and
universities in the United States than there are students from any
other country. Graduating Indian students have spawned new businesses,
with new technologies and extended families that build new bridges
between
our countries. As India looks to expand educational opportunity for
its citizens, the United States will be ready to cooperate. The
announcement that the Georgia Institute of Technology will open a
campus in
India and the variety of joint ventures being considered are signs of
much
more to come. On the government side, we have agreed to expand the
Fulbright Program in India and the exchange of scholars between the
United
States and India.

The third major area in which the two countries must work together more
effectively is energy and the environment. If global climate change
will be the most significant challenge of the future, India and the
United States must face it together. The United States and China are
currently the largest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, but
India is
about to join us in that inauspicious grouping. India has
traditionally
seen global warming as a developed-world problem and has argued that a
country's responsibility for it ought to be measured in per capita,
rather than absolute, terms. That will have to change. How a hugely
populous and rapidly growing India addresses its energy needs is a
question
whose answer will have urgent consequences for the global environment.
Even with clean nuclear energy in the future, India will need
additional energy sources to fuel its growth.

Part of the solution will come from drawing on the strengths of the
United States and India as increasingly dynamic, creative, and
high-tech
societies. As the United States invests in alternative energy sources,
it can partner with India, home to some of the world's most innovative
initiatives: the production of biofuels, the expanded use of
compressed
natural gas in public transport, and the world's most profitable wind
energy company. Indian and American business leaders, scientists, and
engineers must become a major part of the solution to the challenge of
global climate change. We have already begun that process through the
Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate, which seeks
to
accelerate the development of clean energy technologies and bring
together the public and private sectors to tackle this critical
challenge.
India is also a charter member of the major economies group that met
at
the State Department in September 2007 to plan for an effective
post-Kyoto global regime on climate change.

The fourth major challenge is to work with India more effectively to
promote freedom and democracy worldwide. Standing up for people who
have
not yet secured their right to have a say in their government should
be
an essential component of the new U.S.-India relationship. Truly
moving forward on promoting democracy will require new ways of
thinking, and
both countries will need to make some tough choices, commensurate with
their global responsibilities.

Some of India's fellow nonaligned countries are among the world's most
oppressive and antidemocratic regimes. India's defense of those
countries in resolutions at the United Nations and its political and
military
cooperation with some of them -- most notably Burma -- is
anachronistic. Burma is a cruel dictatorship, and its continued
detention of the
heroic dissident and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who lived in
India
in her youth and studied at the University of Delhi, serves as a
rebuke
to all who believe in democratic values. India will also need to be
careful about its long-term relationship with Iran. Indians will need
to
ask themselves if their civilizational link with the Iranian people
shall be confused with support for the interests of the irresponsible
theocratic regime in Tehran.

For its part, the United States must adjust to a friendship with India
that will feature a wider margin of disagreement than we are
accustomed
to -- but a friendship in which the extra effort will be made up for
by rich long-term rewards.

Finally, the United States and India should work together more
effectively in the United Nations and other multilateral
organizations, which I
believe will play a larger role in our interdependent world in the
future. It remains a curious irony that our ability to work together
bilaterally has far outdistanced our sometimes contrary and
disputatious
work together at the UN. We must find a way to trust each other more
and
work in common cause in the world's global forums, and to do so with
other rising democracies, such as Brazil and Indonesia. The United
States
welcomes the rise of a responsible, active India that engages on these
issues. We urge the world to understand that international
institutions, including the UN, will need to adapt to permit a greater
leadership
role for a rising India.


NATURAL ALLIES

As the United States and India look ahead to a new kind of partnership,
we in the U.S. government should not forget that the big breakthrough
in U.S.-India relations was achieved originally by the private sector.
The strength of that private-sector engagement ensures that the change
now under way is real -- and will last. In many respects, both
governments are playing catch-up with the extraordinary business-led
trade and
investment growth of the last two decades. Since 1991 -- the year of
the launch of the economic reforms in India -- trade between the
United
States and India has grown more than sixfold, reaching $32 billion in
2006. Boeing alone sold $11 billion worth of aircraft last year to
India,
one of the world's fastest-growing aviation markets. General Electric
houses its second-largest research center in Bangalore. A number of
India's blue-chip companies -- in banking, pharmaceuticals, and
information technology -- are listed on U.S. stock exchanges.

I saw this phenomenal growth firsthand on a visit to Hyderabad last
autumn. Standing in the lobby of the city's state-of-the-art business
school, I caught a glimpse of a vast and sparkling office complex in
the
distance -- Microsoft's largest such enterprise outside of Redmond,
Washington. On the same trip, I visited a high-tech Indian firm
founded by
Indian Americans who got their start in California. The virtual bridge
between U.S. high-tech centers and the Hyderabad-Bangalore corridor in
India is the most obvious example of the high-tech future. According
to
a recent Duke University study, more than one in seven start-ups in
Silicon Valley is founded by an immigrant from India.

As businesses multiply, our societies are increasingly being woven
together, thanks in part to the 2.5 million Indian Americans in the
United
States, the wealthiest and best-educated immigrant community in the
country. People-to-people contacts -- for work, education, and tourism
--
have reached new heights. The U.S. embassy and consulates in India are
on track to process a staggering 720,000 Indian U.S. visa applications
this year; the U.S. consulate in Chennai issues more U.S. visas for
skilled workers (43,000 last year) than any other U.S. diplomatic post
in
the world. Each year, the United States accepts more students from
India -- 76,000 this year -- than from any other country. Many of them
have
gone on to make substantial contributions in both countries and across
diverse fields. The Stanford graduates Sabeer Bhatia and Vinod Khosla
founded Hotmail and Sun Microsystems, respectively; the Yale graduate
Indra Nooyi became the CEO of PepsiCo last year; the Harvard Business
School graduate Rajat Gupta went on to head McKinsey worldwide. The
late
heroic astronaut Kalpana Chawla left Punjab for the University of
Texas, parlaying her aeronautical engineering degree into a
distinguished
career with NASA.

The rise of a new U.S.-India strategic partnership over the last two
decades is one of the most significant and positive developments in
international politics. If the old U.S.-India relationship could
barely lift
anchor, the new one has clearly set sail. Today there is more of a
strategic upside to our relationship with India than there is with any
other major power. Our great opportunity and challenge is what we do
with
it and how we put it to work to serve our hopes for global security
and
peace. Indians and Americans have a unique opportunity over the next
generation to rewrite history as it ought to have been written in the
first place: the world's oldest democracy will finally count the
world's
largest as one of its closest partners. By reaching out to India, we
have made the bet that the planet's future lies in pluralism,
democracy,
and market economics rather than in intolerance, despotism, and state
planning. Sixty years ago, our countries failed to chart a common
course. Sixty years from now, no one will be able to accuse us of
making the
same mistake twice.
America’strategic Opportunity With India
By R. Nicholas Burns,
From Foreign Affairs, November/December 2007

As we Americans consider our future role in the world, the rise of a
democratic and increasingly powerful India represents a singularly
positive opportunity to advance our global interests. There is a
tremendous
strategic upside to our growing engagement with India. That is why
building a close U.S.-India partnership should be one of the United
States'
highest priorities for the future. It is a unique opportunity with
real
promise for the global balance of power.

We share an abundance of political, economic, and military interests
with India today. Our open societies face similar threats from
terrorism
and organized crime. Our market-based economies embrace trade and
commerce as engines of prosperity. Our peoples value education and a
strong
work ethic. We share an attachment to democracy and individual rights
founded on an instinctive mistrust of authoritarianism. And in an age
of
anti-Americanism, according to the most recent Pew Global Attitudes
survey, nearly six in ten Indians view the United States favorably.

In the past decade, both President Bill Clinton and President George W.
Bush recognized this opportunity and acted to construct a completely
new foundation for U.S. ties with India. Our relationship with India
now
is our fastest-developing friendship with any major country in the
world. I have visited India eight times in the last two years to help
construct this partnership. I have seen firsthand the remarkable
growth in
trust between the leaderships of the two countries. I have also
observed the corresponding explosion in private-sector ties, the
greatest
strength in the relationship. The progress between the United States
and
India has been remarkable: a new and historic agreement on civil
nuclear
energy, closer collaboration on scientific and technological
innovation, burgeoning trade and commercial links, common efforts to
stabilize
South Asia, and a growing U.S.-India campaign to promote stable,
well-governed democracies around the world. And the United States is
only just
beginning to realize the benefits of this relationship for its
interests in South and East Asia.

Still, there are obstacles that the United States and India need to
overcome before they can attain a true global partnership. The two
countries need to work more effectively to counter terrorism, drug
trafficking, and nuclear proliferation. Progress so far has shown how
effectively
we can work together to settle past differences and meet future
challenges. If it is sustained, we will have an even greater
opportunity to
put American and Indian principles and power together and shape a more
stable, peaceful, and prosperous global community.


MISSED OPPORTUNITIES

The realization of this vision of a broad U.S.-India friendship has
long eluded U.S. presidents and Indian prime ministers. When India
broke
free from the British Raj 60 years ago, it was entirely reasonable to
think that the United States would become one of India's foremost
friends
and partners. President Franklin Roosevelt had been an ardent champion
of India's cause; many Americans saw the vision of the United States'
separation from the British Empire reflected in the hopes and dreams
of
Indian freedom fighters.

But despite some successes in those early years, U.S.-India relations
during the postwar period consisted largely of missed opportunities.
The
two countries found a common connection as large multiethnic,
multireligious democracies. The United States was India's largest aid
donor in
the first decades after its independence; collaborated on India's
extraordinary "green revolution," which helped end India's famines;
and
rushed military assistance to India during its border war with China
in
1962. Yet none of this was enough to bridge the chasm of the Cold War.
From the American point of view, Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal
Nehru's
nonalignment policy and warm relations with the Soviet Union made
close
political cooperation unachievable, and Nehru's mostly autarkic
socialist economic policies limited trade and investment ties.
President
Richard Nixon's "tilt" toward Pakistan in 1971 and India's "Smiling
Buddha"
nuclear test in 1974 planted the United States and India squarely on
opposite sides of the political and nonproliferation barricades.

As is so often the case with proud and great countries, this rather
bitter history overwhelmed efforts to mend fences and postponed the
long-desired partnership between India and the United States. Even as
the
Cold War came to an end, Washington focused on deepening its alliances
with Europe and Japan and engaging a rising China. India was left off
the
list of U.S. foreign policy priorities.

But all that is history. Over the past 15 years, three significant
developments have helped bring about the recent dramatic strengthening
of
U.S.-India ties. First, the end of the Cold War removed the
U.S.-Soviet
rivalry as the principal focus of U.S. foreign relations and the
rationale for India's nonalignment policy. Second, India's historic
economic
reforms of the early 1990s, led by Manmohan Singh, then finance
minister and now prime minister, opened India to the global economy
for the
first time and catalyzed the extraordinary boom in private-sector
trade
and investment between the United States and India that continues
today.
Finally, as the twenty-first century began, the global order started
to undergo a tectonic shift, and India's emergence as a global force
was
obvious for all to see.

The arrival of globalization as a defining feature of the age caused
Americans to understand that Washington needs like-minded global
allies
to succeed in an increasingly interdependent world. As Washington
thought about how best to contend with the greatest of globalization's
challenges -- international drug and other criminal cartels,
trafficking in
women and children, climate change, and especially the rise of
terrorism
and its potential intersection with weapons of mass destruction -- it
became clear to most of us in the U.S. government that we needed to
combine forces with powerful emerging countries such as India (Brazil,
Indonesia, and South Africa are others) to respond to these threats.
In
this radically changed global landscape, the basic interests of India
and
the United States -- the world's largest democracy and the world's
oldest -- increasingly converged.

That this new U.S.-India partnership is supported by a bipartisan
consensus in both countries considerably strengthens the prospects for
its
success. In India, both the ruling Indian National Congress and the
opposition Bharatiya Janata Party have worked for over a decade to
elevate
India's ties with the United States. In the United States, shortly
after the beginning of India's economic liberalization, President
Clinton
signaled Washington's desire to forge a new era of commerce and
investment between the two countries. And after India's May 1998
nuclear tests,
then Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott engaged India's then
foreign minister, Jaswant Singh, in 14 rounds of talks over two and a
half
years. Talbott's negotiations with Singh were Washington's first truly
sustained strategic engagement with the Indian leadership.

When he entered office in 2001, President Bush recognized early on the
power and importance of India's large and vibrant democracy in global
politics. He essentially doubled the United States' strategic bet on
India, pursuing an uncommonly ambitious and wide-ranging opening
toward it
and displaying the courage and foresight to take on the complex
nonproliferation issues that had separated the two countries for three
decades. President Bush called for the two countries to jump-start
their
relationship in four strategic areas: civil nuclear energy, civilian
space
programs, high-tech commerce, and missile defense.


NUCLEAR SPRING

When Condoleezza Rice visited India in March 2005, shortly after taking
office as secretary of state, she set out to lay a new cornerstone for
the transformed relationship. She emphasized to Prime Minister Singh
that the United States would alter its long-held framework that tied
and
balanced its relations with "India-Pakistan." We would effectively
"de-hyphenate" our South Asia policy by seeking highly individual
relations with both India and Pakistan. That meant an entirely new and
comprehensive engagement between the United States and India.
Secretary Rice
also told Prime Minister Singh that the United States would break with
long-standing nonproliferation orthodoxy and work to establish full
civil
nuclear cooperation with energy-starved India.

At the start of President Bush's second term, we knew that the nuclear
issue was the proverbial elephant in the room in the U.S. relationship
with India. We also understood that resolving it would allow us to
define a more truly ambitious partnership. India had decided not to
participate in the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) in the 1970s,
and the
United States and other NPT countries had, for three decades,
sanctioned India for developing a nuclear weapons program outside the
NPT
regime. The result was India's isolation from the rest of the world on
all
nuclear issues.

Yet by 2005 it had become clear -- especially to those of us who wished
to see a more effective nonproliferation regime -- that this state of
affairs benefited no one. One of the world's largest and most peaceful
states with advanced nuclear technology was outside the regime,
whereas
countries that cheated, such as Iran and North Korea, had been inside
it. Despite India's outsider nuclear status, it had been a largely
responsible steward of its nuclear material and had played by the
rules of
a system to which it did not belong. By bringing India into the
nonproliferation regime, we would modernize and strengthen it while
allowing
India and the United States to forge a larger and more ambitious
partnership.

When Prime Minister Singh visited Washington in July 2005, President
Bush made this bold proposition: after 30 years, the United States was
prepared to offer India the benefits of full civil nuclear energy
cooperation. We would not assist India's nuclear weapons program, but
we would
help India construct new power plants and would provide it with the
latest in nuclear fuel and technology to run them. In New Delhi in
March
2006, President Bush and Prime Minister Singh announced the
realization
of this vision through the U.S.-India Civil Nuclear Cooperation
Initiative.

Nine months later, in December 2006, a strong bipartisan majority in
Congress passed the Hyde Act, which approved the initiative,
permitting
American investment in India's civil nuclear power industry. These
steps
marked a huge change in U.S. and global thinking about how to work
with India. They transformed India overnight from a target of the
international nonproliferation regime to a stakeholder in it. Beyond
those
first moves, the U.S. Atomic Energy Act required a formal agreement to
lay
the legal basis for bilateral nuclear collaboration. We concluded the
"123 agreement" this July, after long and sometimes difficult
negotiations.

The benefits of these historic agreements are very real for the United
States. For the first time in three decades, India will submit its
entire civil nuclear program to international inspection by
permanently
placing 14 of its 22 nuclear power plants and all of its future civil
reactors under the safeguards of the International Atomic Energy
Agency
(IAEA). Within a generation, nearly 90 percent of India's reactors
will
likely be covered by the agreement. Without the arrangement, India's
nuclear power program would have remained a black box. With it, India
will
be brought into the international nuclear nonproliferation mainstream.

Some have criticized this dramatic break from past orthodoxy,
especially the decision to grant India consent rights to reprocess
spent fuel.
But in fact, the United States has granted reprocessing consent
before,
to Japan and the European Atomic Energy Community. Moreover, these
rights will come into effect only once India builds a state-of-the-art
reprocessing facility fully monitored by the IAEA and we agree on the
specific arrangements and procedures for it. The agreement with India
will
not assist the country's nuclear weapons program in any way. And
should
India decide to conduct a nuclear test in the future, then the United
States would have the right under U.S. law to seek the return of all
nuclear fuel and technology shipped by U.S. firms.

In short, the civil nuclear agreement serves the national security
interests of the United States. It has already become the symbolic
centerpiece of the new U.S.-India friendship and is wildly popular
among
millions of Indians who see it as a mark of U.S. respect for India.
Despite
the objections voiced by the Communist Party of India in August of
this
year, the Indian government has stood firm and is meeting its
commitments under the agreement. This agreement will deepen the
strategic
partnership, create new opportunities for U.S. businesses in India,
enhance
global energy security, and reduce India's carbon emissions. It will
also send a powerful message to nuclear outlaws such as Iran: if you
play
by the rules, as India has, you will be rewarded; if you do not, you
will face sanctions and isolation.

Several further steps remain. India must conclude a safeguards
agreement with the IAEA, following which the 45-nation Nuclear
Suppliers Group
must change its international practice to permit free civil nuclear
trade with India. Then Congress will vote a final time to permit, once
and
for all, U.S. firms to work with India to construct nuclear power
plants to meet its need for electricity.

During the two years of this diplomatic marathon of negotiations, my
Indian counterparts and I worked more closely and intensively than we
ever had before. We were sometimes forced to dig deep into our
reserves of
creativity and tenacity. But the outcome demonstrates that Americans
and Indians can work together to achieve important goals on the most
vital international issues -- something once thought impossible.


SECURING SOUTH ASIA

Another fundamental change in the United States' relationship with
India has been newfound cooperation in South Asia. Since the attacks
of
September 11, 2001, South Asia has been viewed in Washington as a
region
of vital importance to our future. It is the region from which the
United States was attacked by al Qaeda. It is home to Pakistan, the
most
important U.S. partner in the struggle against al Qaeda. And it is
home to
the United States' friend and partner Afghanistan.

India is, of course, the region's largest country and its dominant
economic and military power. We are now working closely with India for
the
very first time to limit conflict and build long-term peace throughout
South Asia. We see India as a stabilizing force in an often violent
and
unstable part of the world.

The United States and India share a particular interest in defeating
the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan and in helping to support that
country's fledgling democracy. India has made important contributions
there. It has pledged over $750 million for reconstruction, making it
the
largest South Asian donor to the government of President Hamid Karzai.
It has helped renovate and build hospitals, granaries, and schools; it
is training Afghan parliamentary officials in governance and
parliamentary processes; and it has committed to building dams, roads,
power
projects, and a new parliament building. India's continuing
involvement in
Afghanistan is essential to that country's stabilization and long-term
success, and cooperation between the United States and India in
Afghanistan has been close and encouraging.

In Sri Lanka, the United States and India have come together to call
for a political settlement with the Tamil minority through a
power-sharing agreement so as to end the island's bloody conflict. Our
countries
have stood together in denouncing the terrorism and human rights
violations that have plagued Sri Lanka during the past year. In
Bangladesh, we
share both influence and similar concerns over instability. We have
encouraged the caretaker government there to restore democracy and
fulfill
the desire of Bangladeshis to replace corruption with good governance.
And to the north, we are shoring up Nepal's democracy: helping the
government restore its reach into the countryside and supporting the
efforts of the Election Commission to hold constituent assembly
elections.

The United States places a very high priority on improving relations
between India and Pakistan. It is in the United States' strong
interest
to see the two countries develop a lasting and productive peace,
including by resolving the conflict over Kashmir -- a potential
nuclear
flashpoint. This is a vital U.S. interest and is essential to securing
South
Asian stability. Both President Bush and Secretary Rice have made it a
high priority to encourage both countries to overcome the historic and
deep enmity between them. We will continue to support the promising
"composite dialogue" between the two governments as well as efforts to
stimulate greater contacts between the people on opposite sides of the
Line of Control. Prime Minister Singh and Pakistani President Pervez
Musharraf have achieved more in quiet talks toward resolving their
bilateral
difficulties than anyone thought possible a few years ago. That the
composite dialogue continues as a channel of discussion marks
remarkable
progress from the 1999 Kargil conflict and from 2002, when the United
States feared that India and Pakistan would go to war. In this light,
the gradually increasing civil-society contacts between the two
countries
offer the prospect of a slow but sure development of constituencies
for peace on both sides. A considerable peace dividend awaits both
India
and Pakistan if they can sustain this newfound momentum.

Leadership in South Asia is, of course, just one part of India's
increasingly important global role. As India is both a rising power
and a
democracy, we in Washington view its growing influence in the world as
broadly congruent with U.S. interests. Both countries seek to promote
democratic principles and institutions around the world because we
know
that stable democracies are largely peaceful and better able to manage
the
consequences of globalization. Whether it comes to ensuring that
China's rise is peaceful or preventing the Muslim world from turning
its
back on modernity or stopping rising economies from being ruined by
rising
temperatures, it is hard to think of two other countries with as much
at stake or as much to offer to global stability.

With this in mind, the United States and India have worked hard to come
together on global issues in recent years. Prime Minister Singh and
President Bush jointly launched the UN Democracy Fund in 2005 and are
its
largest contributors. The fund is already having a tangible impact,
having awarded more than 100 grants to civil-society organizations in
countries that are democratizing or strengthening their democracies.
Both
nations are also active leaders in the Community of Democracies, a
group of over 120 nations committed to assisting other countries on
their
path to democratization.

Together, the United States and India have also made real advances in
cooperation on health issues. India is an important participant in the
International Partnership on Avian and Pandemic Influenza, which has
helped put avian flu on the national agendas of countries around the
world. India and the United States are also actively involved in
fighting
HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases. We are working together to
eradicate polio and to promote maternal and child health. We are
natural
global partners joined by a comparative advantage in science, advanced
information technologies, and health services.


A LONG JOURNEY

Despite the enormous promise of the U.S. relationship with India, there
are still considerable hurdles ahead as we seek to form a truly
effective global partnership. First, it is critical that Americans
consider
their future with India realistically, guarding against undue optimism
and excessive expectations. Differing histories, cultures, and
geographies will make for a healthy but sometimes argumentative
friendship. The
United States and India will need to work together more effectively in
four primary areas: military and intelligence, agriculture and
education, energy and the environment, and freedom and democracy.

The first challenge will be to counter terrorism, drug trafficking, and
nuclear proliferation, and to do so, the two countries will have to
strengthen their military, intelligence, and law enforcement
relationships. The potential of U.S.-India military cooperation became
clear in the
aftermath of the December 2004 tsunami in South and Southeast Asia,
when the Indian and U.S. navies and air forces were among the first to
rush humanitarian assistance to those in need. Since then, the
U.S.-India
defense relationship has become much more active, including annual
joint air force and naval exercises. Interoperability between the two
militaries has also increased, helping to preserve stability in Asia.
India's robust navy travels the sea-lanes linking the Middle East and
Africa
with East Asia, and we are working with it to expand the surveillance
of suspect cargo vessels and real-time communication. Washington is
also increasing military education and training exchanges,
particularly in
peacekeeping, an area in which India is a major global force.

Military cooperation is impeded by the fact that much of the Indian
military still uses a considerable amount of Soviet-era equipment.
Barriers to closer coordination in training and the sharing of
military
doctrine remain in both governments. A significant Indian defense
purchase
from the United States -- for example, of the new advanced multirole
combat aircraft that the Indian air force seeks -- would be a great
leap
forward and signal a real commitment to long-term military
partnership.

Meanwhile, the United States and India must also achieve more advanced
cooperation on counterterrorism, intelligence, and law enforcement,
based on the recognition that terrorism is a central threat to both
countries. This means, among other things, working more closely to
disrupt
the flow of funds to terrorists. We also urge India to participate in
our
Container Security Initiative (which, among other things, allows the
United States to check suspect U.S.-bound cargo containers at their
foreign ports of departure) and to unleash its proven expertise in
information technology to meet a new generation of threats from
cyberspace.

The second major challenge is for the United States to help India
address some of its most urgent domestic problems, particularly in
agriculture and education. When Prime Minister Singh first met with
President
Bush in 2005, he expressed a strong desire to work with the United
States
on a second green revolution to help India's rural poor. This is an
urgent task: despite India's progress, nearly 700 million of its
citizens
-- 25 percent of the world's poor -- live on less than $2 a day.
Americans such as the Nobel Prize-winning scientist Norman Borlaug
were key
actors in India's first green revolution, and Prime Minister Singh has
suggested that the United States' famous midwestern land-grant
institutions could assist India through the implementation of
public-private
partnerships, market-oriented agriculture, and new agricultural
methods.
U.S. private-sector expertise and investment could help India create
the cold-storage facilities, supply chains, and food-processing
technology that form the backbone of a sophisticated agricultural
market. The
two countries could also collaborate on spreading environmentally
sustainable farming methods, such as land conservation and
water-resource
management.

As India's rural poor become integrated into global markets, the United
States and India must also find a way to bridge differences on global
trade. We have differed with India on critical issues during the long
Doha Round of trade negotiations. We continue to believe that the
completion of the Doha Round talks offers the best hope for expanding
global
economic growth and prosperity. An Indian global trade policy that
increases liberalization and stimulates significant and sustained
trade in
agriculture and manufactured goods would benefit all, and so would the
opening of India's retail, banking, and insurance sectors.

As with agriculture, the United States helped establish some of India's
finest educational institutions, including one of the Indian
Institutes of Management and one of the Indian Institutes of
Technology. Now an
even more ambitious education agenda with India is needed. Education
has been and will be a driving engine of U.S.-India relations -- it
will
constitute the foundation of a shared future and be a wellspring of
personal relationships and dreams that go far beyond
government-to-government cooperation. There are now more students from
India at colleges and
universities in the United States than there are students from any
other country. Graduating Indian students have spawned new businesses,
with new technologies and extended families that build new bridges
between
our countries. As India looks to expand educational opportunity for
its citizens, the United States will be ready to cooperate. The
announcement that the Georgia Institute of Technology will open a
campus in
India and the variety of joint ventures being considered are signs of
much
more to come. On the government side, we have agreed to expand the
Fulbright Program in India and the exchange of scholars between the
United
States and India.

The third major area in which the two countries must work together more
effectively is energy and the environment. If global climate change
will be the most significant challenge of the future, India and the
United States must face it together. The United States and China are
currently the largest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, but
India is
about to join us in that inauspicious grouping. India has
traditionally
seen global warming as a developed-world problem and has argued that a
country's responsibility for it ought to be measured in per capita,
rather than absolute, terms. That will have to change. How a hugely
populous and rapidly growing India addresses its energy needs is a
question
whose answer will have urgent consequences for the global environment.
Even with clean nuclear energy in the future, India will need
additional energy sources to fuel its growth.

Part of the solution will come from drawing on the strengths of the
United States and India as increasingly dynamic, creative, and
high-tech
societies. As the United States invests in alternative energy sources,
it can partner with India, home to some of the world's most innovative
initiatives: the production of biofuels, the expanded use of
compressed
natural gas in public transport, and the world's most profitable wind
energy company. Indian and American business leaders, scientists, and
engineers must become a major part of the solution to the challenge of
global climate change. We have already begun that process through the
Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate, which seeks
to
accelerate the development of clean energy technologies and bring
together the public and private sectors to tackle this critical
challenge.
India is also a charter member of the major economies group that met
at
the State Department in September 2007 to plan for an effective
post-Kyoto global regime on climate change.

The fourth major challenge is to work with India more effectively to
promote freedom and democracy worldwide. Standing up for people who
have
not yet secured their right to have a say in their government should
be
an essential component of the new U.S.-India relationship. Truly
moving forward on promoting democracy will require new ways of
thinking, and
both countries will need to make some tough choices, commensurate with
their global responsibilities.

Some of India's fellow nonaligned countries are among the world's most
oppressive and antidemocratic regimes. India's defense of those
countries in resolutions at the United Nations and its political and
military
cooperation with some of them -- most notably Burma -- is
anachronistic. Burma is a cruel dictatorship, and its continued
detention of the
heroic dissident and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who lived in
India
in her youth and studied at the University of Delhi, serves as a
rebuke
to all who believe in democratic values. India will also need to be
careful about its long-term relationship with Iran. Indians will need
to
ask themselves if their civilizational link with the Iranian people
shall be confused with support for the interests of the irresponsible
theocratic regime in Tehran.

For its part, the United States must adjust to a friendship with India
that will feature a wider margin of disagreement than we are
accustomed
to -- but a friendship in which the extra effort will be made up for
by rich long-term rewards.

Finally, the United States and India should work together more
effectively in the United Nations and other multilateral
organizations, which I
believe will play a larger role in our interdependent world in the
future. It remains a curious irony that our ability to work together
bilaterally has far outdistanced our sometimes contrary and
disputatious
work together at the UN. We must find a way to trust each other more
and
work in common cause in the world's global forums, and to do so with
other rising democracies, such as Brazil and Indonesia. The United
States
welcomes the rise of a responsible, active India that engages on these
issues. We urge the world to understand that international
institutions, including the UN, will need to adapt to permit a greater
leadership
role for a rising India.


NATURAL ALLIES

As the United States and India look ahead to a new kind of partnership,
we in the U.S. government should not forget that the big breakthrough
in U.S.-India relations was achieved originally by the private sector.
The strength of that private-sector engagement ensures that the change
now under way is real -- and will last. In many respects, both
governments are playing catch-up with the extraordinary business-led
trade and
investment growth of the last two decades. Since 1991 -- the year of
the launch of the economic reforms in India -- trade between the
United
States and India has grown more than sixfold, reaching $32 billion in
2006. Boeing alone sold $11 billion worth of aircraft last year to
India,
one of the world's fastest-growing aviation markets. General Electric
houses its second-largest research center in Bangalore. A number of
India's blue-chip companies -- in banking, pharmaceuticals, and
information technology -- are listed on U.S. stock exchanges.

I saw this phenomenal growth firsthand on a visit to Hyderabad last
autumn. Standing in the lobby of the city's state-of-the-art business
school, I caught a glimpse of a vast and sparkling office complex in
the
distance -- Microsoft's largest such enterprise outside of Redmond,
Washington. On the same trip, I visited a high-tech Indian firm
founded by
Indian Americans who got their start in California. The virtual bridge
between U.S. high-tech centers and the Hyderabad-Bangalore corridor in
India is the most obvious example of the high-tech future. According
to
a recent Duke University study, more than one in seven start-ups in
Silicon Valley is founded by an immigrant from India.

As businesses multiply, our societies are increasingly being woven
together, thanks in part to the 2.5 million Indian Americans in the
United
States, the wealthiest and best-educated immigrant community in the
country. People-to-people contacts -- for work, education, and tourism
--
have reached new heights. The U.S. embassy and consulates in India are
on track to process a staggering 720,000 Indian U.S. visa applications
this year; the U.S. consulate in Chennai issues more U.S. visas for
skilled workers (43,000 last year) than any other U.S. diplomatic post
in
the world. Each year, the United States accepts more students from
India -- 76,000 this year -- than from any other country. Many of them
have
gone on to make substantial contributions in both countries and across
diverse fields. The Stanford graduates Sabeer Bhatia and Vinod Khosla
founded Hotmail and Sun Microsystems, respectively; the Yale graduate
Indra Nooyi became the CEO of PepsiCo last year; the Harvard Business
School graduate Rajat Gupta went on to head McKinsey worldwide. The
late
heroic astronaut Kalpana Chawla left Punjab for the University of
Texas, parlaying her aeronautical engineering degree into a
distinguished
career with NASA.

The rise of a new U.S.-India strategic partnership over the last two
decades is one of the most significant and positive developments in
international politics. If the old U.S.-India relationship could
barely lift
anchor, the new one has clearly set sail. Today there is more of a
strategic upside to our relationship with India than there is with any
other major power. Our great opportunity and challenge is what we do
with
it and how we put it to work to serve our hopes for global security
and
peace. Indians and Americans have a unique opportunity over the next
generation to rewrite history as it ought to have been written in the
first place: the world's oldest democracy will finally count the
world's
largest as one of its closest partners. By reaching out to India, we
have made the bet that the planet's future lies in pluralism,
democracy,
and market economics rather than in intolerance, despotism, and state
planning. Sixty years ago, our countries failed to chart a common
course. Sixty years from now, no one will be able to accuse us of
making the
same mistake twice.
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I think this deal has more to do with future purchases and arrangements than this one.

If India goes with the Mig-35, then that would make the next choice more in Russia's favor and on and on.

But I really think that India really prefers a stronger relationship with the USA in this regard.

It seems they prefer the Mig as a piece of hardware, but want the relationship with the USA that comes with the Hornet..A great plane and a relationship with a financially "challenged" ex superpower? Or very good plane and a great partnership with the worlds premier superpower?

Im sure we will know soon enough.
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i think instead of thinking abt India US relations very should think abt our self respect...

Why do we worry abt what India will do or with whom US is going to side with. Actual problem is our own insecurity and we really need to focus on our shortcomings. Sorry for being pessimistic but i don't think we have more time to waste....
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When Hillary Clinton came to Pakistan last year, A student in an informal discussion asked her about that leniency towards India and being cold towards Pakistan ..
She replied: "In order to be treated like India, You need to BE like India" ..
Same was said in the U.S by an M.P in reply to a similar question ..

The problem is that we keep on complaining about this partial behavior of the world, but we don't meet them half way by doing anything good for our country .. In India the investors have a sense of security .. Who would invest in a country where there are bomb attacks almost daily and is surrounded by sectarian clashes .. ?
We need to rectify the problems we face today and look for a better tomorrow .. We need to remove that label of terrorism and commit ourselves whole heartedly to boost this economy of ours .. Believe me, the world is all about economy .. If you r powerful and provide the world with something in return, it will lean towards u .. This is the case with India .. Its recent economic boost has faded away all those memories of tyrannical occupation in Kashmir from the minds of the world .. All they see is a country full of business opportunities .. Thats where we think they are being lenient towards India, in fact that is the way it goes .. Millions of jobs have been created in India thorough out sourcing, which the U.S finds as a cheaper way of customer support in these times of global recession .. And believe me, Pakistani educated people are capable of speaking much better English than Indians ( accent wise ), but not much is being done to bring this new job creating mechanism in Pakistan ..
Now to stop terrorism .. If I were in command, I would have first sealed that Pak-Afghan border, even if that asked for a new Great Wall to be built along that border ..
I remember when in U.K the right of vote was given to the common man .. One of the Parliamentarians said: "If we have given them the right to chose us, Lets also educate them now" ..
The only way to combat fundamentalism and religious fanaticism is by educating our people .. Its not gona happen fortnightly but its gona happen for sure if adapted ..
Now the choice is ours .. Either we should keep complaining, Or we should change, and make ourselves eligible for the support & reputation which India is getting ..
Regards ..
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