Friday, December 25, 2009

India not in same league as US, China: Analyst: India News

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    • Bharat Karnad
    • an analyst at the Center for Policy Research in New Delhi [ Images ], who is currently a visiting fellow at both Princeton and the University of Pennsylvania's Center for the Advanced Study of India, was leading a discussion on 'Obstacles to India's emergence as a great power' hosted by the Brookings Institution.
    • Karnad, who was introduced by Stephen P Cohen, who heads up the South Asia Program at Brookings as "one of India's best scholars and one of the leading strategists and analysts," asserted that "it's hard power that's the basis for power. You don't get it by selling Bollywood movies and musicals."
    • Karnad said except for nuclear weapons, "Without indigenous production of its own weapons, a great power cannot have security," and said, "The armed services of India is remiss in not promoting and assisting the production of indigenous equipment."
    • He acknowledged that in terms of becoming a major economic power, "India is getting there by sheer momentum," but reiterated that "there is no grand strategic plan by the government -- no concerted plan."
    • Karnad said, "It's being autarchic really," that's key "to be a great power. A great power has a capacity to be an autarchic system. The basic potential to be autarchic basically defines the great power status of a country."

      He said that "for the next 15 years, India will be obsessed with the economic issue -- to acquire prosperity and better ourselves before we start looking at the external world," and projecting any kind of hard power."

    • He said, "The US was first a great military power before they acquired great power status. Look at any great power in the past -- Napoleonic France [ Images ]. So, military power comes first and historical evidence proves that. India has always been doing things from the other side."
    • "Pakistan is integral to India's security," he said. "If there is no Pakistan, we would have had to invent it. We would have been then facing the Islamist threat if there was no Pakistan, which is now facing this existential threat. So, I always argue that we need to do everything to strengthen the sense of Pakistan's security."

      Karnad implied that if not for Pakistan, India could very well have been facing this existential threat from Islamists.

      Thus, he argued that resolving the Kashmir [ Images ] issue was imperative for India, if only to strengthen Pakistan's security. In turn, without the albatross of Pakistan hanging around its neck, India would have the chance to acquire great power status.

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