Why has India suddenly decided to change its non-aligned posture?

Politics Asked by user366312 on October 1, 2020

Historically India had been a non-aligned country. It had been convenient for India. For instance, India managed to purchase weapons from major weapons suppliers while distancing itself from American or Soviet proxy-wars.

In recent years, India decided to shed its non-aligned posture and decided to move toward the American pole. From 2002 to 2018, India signed GSOMIA, LEMOA, COMCASA. BECA is under process as of March-2020. So, as we can see even though moving to the American pole started in 2002, it was expedited during the present BJP rule.

Why has India suddenly decided to change its non-aligned posture?

2 Answers

The term "non-aligned" (as opposed to simply "neutral") is an historical product of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), which in turn was a response to the Cold War. Although the NAM still exists formally and India is still a major member, it is considered much less relevant now that the Cold War has ended. More generally, the end of the Cold War has radically changed the geopolitical landscape and so it is not surprising that India has been gradually (I would not say "suddenly") been closer to the United States. India's increasing conflicts with China further reinforces this.

Domestically of course there is also the fact that BJP is in power. Modi and Trump in particular have a strong and close relationship. To the extent that the change actually is "sudden", this is the key reason for it.

Correct answer by Brian Z on October 1, 2020

In the past, India had its Soviet ally to help protect it from China. Now that the Soviet Union is no more (and its rump state Russia is diminished), the US is the only power opposing China; thus they are trying to get closer ties with the US.

Answered by Andrew on October 1, 2020

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