INDIA TO SIGN QUID PRO QUO COMCASA FOR WAIVER FROM CAASTA TO BUY S-400 MISSILES & REDUCE RELIANCE ON RUSSIA WHEN 2 PLUS 2 MEET IN DELHI –USA’S GOAL TO WEAN INDIA AWAY FROM RUSSIA ENTERS THE LAST LAP. USA’s STRATEGY ?

USA has become an oil exporting nation so IDF analyses the period ahead portends very, very trying  days for China, Iran and Russia in economic terms due a trade war let loose by President Trump which will affect India. Chinese and Iranian companies are in big crisis. Trump’s aim.

IDF posted the  2 plus 2  meet was postponed by Secretary of State Pompeo. It was deliberate as the  agenda was not complete to USA’s  expectations. The agenda is going through,  “Last Minute Jugad”.  Dr APJ Abdul Kalam always told Project Directors. “Push push….no waste time, less files more work.” A nuclear submarine was born, like his missiles.

 

The 2 plus 2 meet will try cement  a strategic  tilt  to USA in US-India  Defence Communications, bound by CISMOA calling it COMCASA which links communications with equipment and systems and inter-links and if it’s lax can lead to Intelligence leaks as India does not have its own massive sever system like China or USA. Even Indians rely more on Gmail for GB space free !

 

 Indian Navy uses US supplied secure  Modem Satellite Communications CENTRIX in Ex Malabars connected to the picture in USN ships and Pentagon. It works seamlessly. Indian Navy can now ask for it for MDA to augment it’s centre in Gurgaon.  Pakistan Navy ships have it for TF-151 in the Gulf.

 

This 21st Century is  a maritime rich century and India,  Pakistan and IOR nations which  hold geographic aces, attract the  larger world powers. Pakistan has trucked with cash rich enemy of India which is China; and India has trucked with USA whose enemy is China. 2 plus 2  is work in progress ?

 

China is supplying  neighbor Bangla Desh two more latest 053 HH Missile Frigates after supplying  two second hand Qing submarines at friendship prices. PM Bangla Desh has promised its Armed Forces a ‘Goal 2030’,  to be a ‘Three Dimensional Power’.  Pakistan will get 8 submarines and 2  M22 Frigates.  Nothing comes free in Geo-Politics. Arms  reliance helps the  Chinese to move in to the IOR with a Necklace of Ports, that President Trump wants to derail with a Trade War, and even stop an IMF loan to Pakistan to fix China’s CPEC.

 

India-USA relations were frosty when  USA supported Pakistan but a new era  was sown by 2005 led by  Navy’s Exercise Malabars. A one page   Defence Framework  was  finalized  in  a midnight  meeting between India’s NSA MK Narayanan and Condelezza Rice in DC. This was an essential step  to ensure the 123 Nuclear Deal went through later  by PM Dr Manmohan Singh who had instructed his Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee  to go to USA with NSA  and sign what best USA  offered.

 

 India’s incestuous, ‘New Defence Framework For US-India Defence Relationship’  was signed  next day on 28th June, 2005 in the Pentagon  by then DM  Pranab Mukherjee later President & US Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld in the presence of the three Vice Chiefs of Staff.  The preamble    has blossomed since.  It reads; The United States and India have entered a new era. We are transforming our relationship to reflect our common principles and shared national interests.”

 

During the signing  it is reported, Secretary Rumsfeld asked  Minister Mukherjee if he could do anything for him.  Mukherjee asked Rumsfeld to shift India from Pacific Command to Central Command which holds Pakistan. Rumsfeld was quick as always.  to say, “Give me an Indian Division in Iraq(where US Military was involved) and I will transfer India”.

 

The Vice Chiefs shook heads, but now it’s  Indo Pacific Command to  pull in India into the South China Sea (SCS) where Navies have  exercised and Japan has sent a Helicopter Carrier. USA has asked for Indian Military officers in Central Command at Tampa and in Indo-Pacific Command in Hawaii. Both nations militaries have now  become comrades ! Every Indian family has a kin in USA and Indians are deep into US politics.

 

Para 6 was for Defence Trade. USA knew  India is the world’s largest weapon importer.  In recognition of the growing breadth and depth of the U.S.-India strategic defense relationship, we hereby establish the Defense Procurement and Production Group and institute a Joint Working Group for mid-year review of work overseen by the Defense Policy Group.”

 

Bureaucrats love FMS–G to G trade so India has easily procured  $ 15 billion worth of planes and helicopters for the Air Force and Navy and is set to order another $5 billion worth of 28 Guardian  Drones, Helicopters and 4 more Boeing 737 P8i Maritime Reconnaissance planes and helicopters for the Navy to add to the earlier 8,  and  missiles and 9 Apache Attack helicopters for the Army.  More equipment was discussed and offered in the recently concluded 7th DTTI meet, reported on this site.

 

IDF reports, that brick by brick,  PM Modi helped by BJP General Secretary Ram Madhav have  cemented,  the India-US Security relationship after agreeing to a Joint Strategy for Asia Pacific in 2015 with President Obama with China in mind, that Ambassador Frank Wisner had begun in the 1990s. Wisner also advised PM Narashima Rao not to test the nuclear bomb, which PM Vajpayee stealthily  did in 1988 and changed India’s face.  Very few knew, and unsung heroes were  DRDO’s APJ and  Santanam. BARC gave the cores. Foreign Secretary then Amb Lalit Mansingh said he did not know, before the test ! 

 

In SCS US Navy sails past South China Sea’s  (SCS) manmade islands’ 12nm  territorial waters, to show it does not recognize the rocks   belong to China, but can do no more.  India was asked to join SCS   patrols but declined. USA is hopeful India will join to show joint annoyance to China as PM Modi had  assured US Congress in his oratorical of his intent,   to become USA’s bulwark in the East to Congressmen’s delight, who have moved to admit India as a special  Tier 1 Strategic Defence Partner. USA  will demand allegiance.  “Follow CAASTA”, Nikki Haley said !

 

 India had no option but tilt to USA to meet the growing China Pakistan challenge. The goal that USA set in 1990  was to wean Indian Kohinoor  away from Russian Defence supplies when Soviet Union collapsed,  first through supplies from Israel who supplied  US patented high technology UAVs, EW Systems,  Phalcons and later  Barak Missiles  and top of the line radars. This   succeeded.

 

As of writing USA, NATO, EU and QUAD which includes India, Japan and Australia are not a military pact,  but are militarily ranged against China, which is  a nuclear power. (Slides Credit Khurana). Western nations or India  can do little in SCS as China  has usurped and fortified the rocks into islands  within its Nine Dash Line in a step by step Strategy.

 

Western leaders know, a   military action which can turn nuclear,  will be disastrous.  Even North Korea threatened USA. The current US–China spat  is different from the USA-Soviet Union Cold War, as USA  is intertwined with China in trade and can hurt each other, probably China more. In long term World Economy will be hurt and  India is being sucked  into the game as USA has  sanctioned  Russia and Iran, both India’s friends.

 

At Singapore’s Shangri-La dialogue PM Modi articulated India’s policy and  showed bravado and warned China on Freedom of Navigation and law without naming it, and affirmed India’s interest in the Indo-Pacific from Africa to USA. PM Modi is possibly assured the Indian Navy can contribute, but IN will needs more sea legs discussed in next IDF post !

  

India has to tread carefully on SCS. No White Shipping has been stopped for innocent passage, and  China will one day show it’s card with Taiwan’s Itu Aba island and claim EEZ. (See Picture) This could reopen a Pandora’s box on the UNCLOS ITLOS award with a  huge  EEZ for Taiwan, which was  missing  in the 2016 UNCLOS ITLOS arbitration award in favour of Philippines. The court  dismissed  China’s historic claims. It  refused to accept  Taiwan’s map of the 9 Dash Line and its EEZ claim and importance of  Taiping (Itu Aba) island, despite Taiwan applying to be  a party.

 

Taiping (Itu Aba) has habitability  and an airfield with Coast Guard and troops so gets 250nm EEZ if accepted. Taiping  has not been named  a rock in final list in the award’s summary like others in Philippines’s Spratlys. ,  12 pages do discuss the status of Ibu Aba, its pros and cons by experts quoted.  

 

India needs to  consolidate and  meet with larger security challenges in South Asia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Doklam for Bhutan  and beef up India’s Navy as a Net Security Provider in the Indian Ocean Region on priority, and promulgate rules and SOPs for IOR nations. USA cannot help and may  agree to good Taliban back in Afghanistan.  Sadly the  Defence budget especially Navy’s  2018-19  has dwindled to record lows and costs of ships  risen and many orders cancelled, despite a 7.5% growing economy. Shan Na Varuna.

 

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