This explains a dramatic warming between New Delhi and Washington since the turn of the century, with milestones ranging from a 2005 civilian nuclear technology-sharing agreement to a 2016 joint military base-sharing agreement. India now flies U.S.-made P-8 maritime patrol planes, but has yet to purchase a U.S. jet fighter.
In the past, India has resisted being dragged into foreign alliances: after all, it was one of five founders of the Non-Aligned Movement in 1961 at the height of the Cold War. Therefore, India’s next steps following the dissolution of the stealth-fighter agreement with Russia will be of interest—for its military significance, but also as a gauge of how comfortable New Delhi is with further deepening its relationship with the United States.
Sébastien Roblin holds a master’s degree in conflict resolution from Georgetown University and served as a university instructor for the Peace Corps in China. He has also worked in education, editing and refugee resettlement in France and the United States. He currently writes on security and military history for War Is Boring.
Image: Wikimedia Commons