Tuesday, December 06, 2005


Via Stratfor:

The Dec. 5-7 Russia-India summit will reveal strategic trust between the two countries that runs deeper than the cooperation either shares with China and deeper than U.S.-Indian collaboration. This will result in very close cooperation on defense and space matters, including unparalleled military and dual-use technology sharing. The most technically advanced and sensitive projects to be boosted by the summit will be the joint development of a fifth-generation fighter and the creation of the space-based Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) -- originally an exclusively Russian project that India will join as a lead partner. GLONASS will become an alternative to the U.S.-based Global Positioning System, and thus will signal Moscow and New Delhi's coming independence from Washington in a field key to any nation's security.

With these and other highly sensitive deals in discussion at the summit, India and Russia are poised to help each other greatly on the road to becoming strong world powers. Strategically, this relationship probably will become a long-term concern not only for China but also for the United States. Even with all the advances in U.S.-Indian relations recently, the level of collaboration and mutual trust on strategic matters between Washington and New Delhi is nothing compared to that between New Delhi and Moscow. Furthermore, the GLONASS project likely will be a thorn in Washington's side. The world depends on the United States' GPS system in terms of military and civilian space applications. GLONASS will render both Russia and India independent of the United States in this crucial area -- and powers independent of the United States can do many things others cannot.

Overall, Washington's major concern is that major Eurasian powers will form close strategic relations that might threaten U.S. hegemony in the future, no matter what relations the United States has with such countries now. In fact, Eurasia's major powers can threaten the United States only if they are aligned. Thus, Washington's prime geostrategic goal has been -- and will continue to be -- working to keep such alliances from forming, even if the near-term goals of those alliances are not directed against Washington (such as the Russo-Indian partnership). The United States' concern is not with current intentions, but with the potential for Eurasian giants to challenge the United States in the future if they choose.

1 comment:

Jaffna said...

Primary Red,

Fascinating stuff. Hope the alternative to the Global Positioning System does take off - and soon. There needs to be checks and balances in the international arena.



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