September 24, 2005

OUR LINE:

India toes US line, dumps Iran (CHIDANAND RAJGHATTA, SEPTEMBER 25, 2005, Times of India)

They are five sentences that signal a fundamental change in Indian foreign policy of over
five decades.

In an overt and transparent shift in alignment and emphasis, the Congress-led UPA government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday signed up with the United States on a touchstone issue, asking Iran to be flexible and make concessions to avoid a confrontation with Washington on the nuclear issue.

India’s blunt message, which is also aimed at allaying U.S concerns over New Delhi’s long-standing ties with
Teheran, was conveyed by Prime Minister Singh to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinijad when the latter telephoned him on Friday.

In fact, the UPA government went to unusual lengths to disclose the gist of the conversation between the two leaders in a brief press release sent to select media.


Not that it's a tough standard to meet, but India is already a better ally than Europe.


MORE:
Biggest Indo-US naval exercise (RAJAT PANDIT, SEPTEMBER 24, 2005, Times of India)

India might still be shy of openly jumping onto the controversial US-led Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) bandwagon but it's certainly steaming ahead to practice mammoth operations with American forces on the high seas.

India's largest-ever naval exercise with any country will kick off on Sunday when Indian and American aircraft carriers, destroyers, guided-missile frigates, fighter and surveillance aircraft undertake combat manoeuvres in the north-west Arabian Sea.

The sheer scale of this 10-day Indo-US exercise, "Malabar-05", can be gauged from the fact that it will involve almost 10,000 officers and sailors from the two nations.

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 24, 2005 4:28 PM
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