US Planning Military Base in India (SUCI)


Since the ascendancy of the BJP-led NDA to power at the Centre hobnobbing of the Indian government with the US is increasing while US pressure on India is growing alarmingly in every sphere including defence. In the field of defence or military build up the US pressure on India and India’s submission albeit in the interest of the ruling bourgeoisie with its imperialist and hegemonistic aspirations, is more and more discernible with the passage of time. The evil collaboration is gradually growing to a palpable dimension.
We have shown earlier that with the accentuation of crisis in the economic field inside and outside the country, the US is increasingly losing its grip on its traditional allies in Europe, barring UK, both in the economic and military fields. European Union, mainly under the leadership of Germany, is coming up as a strong competitor to the US in world capitalist market. In Asia, Japan also is posing a threat to US economic hegemony. In the military field the position of NATO also is not cohesive. In the Iraq invasion, the US could not involve NATO. All the major countries in NATO either objected or declined to actively participate in US-UK aggression on Iraq. Japan also kept aloof from Iraq war. In such a situation US imperialists are more and more looking to Asia and searching for a strong new ally like India. Indian capitalism has already reached the stage of imperialism, though not on a par with the traditional Western countries like US, UK, Germany etc., but definitely to an appreciable extent. The ruling Indian bourgeoisie is aspiring to establish the hegemony of the Indian capitalist state in the neighbouring Asian countries. Naturally, they are too keen to increase their military might for which they are soliciting help and assistance from advanced military powers like the US and Israel. The nature of such help is not merely confined to acquiring sophisticated weaponry and defence techniques but has extended to joint military exercise as mentioned earlier. But while seeking such assistance from and entering into collaboration with the US, the Indian bourgeoisie is also careful in guarding its imperialistic and hegemonistic interests. So they are making every effort to resist to the extent possible complete capitulation to the US imperialism. Hence, they are exploring avenues for increasing their bargaining power as well. The recent visit of the prime minister to China to improve diplomatic relations with China and open newer channels of trade and commerce is an attempt in that direction. Though the Indian capitalist class is trying to extract a bit more from the US through such bargaining exercise, yet US imperialism is so powerful that its terms and conditions often prevail and the Indian bourgeoisie succumb to that pressure to the detriment of interest of the country as a whole.
The Statesman dated 9.6.03 reports, ‘USA keen on military bases in India’. Before going into the details it should be mentioned that such a condition or expectation on the part of the USA has not been created all on a sudden, although US administration might not have thought so much before the BJP-led NDA came to power at the Centre. For the last few years, the Indian government is increasingly building up military alliance in different fields — both with US and its spring board Israel. Several thousand Indian soldiers are getting specialized training in Israel for containing ‘insurgency’ although it is the greatest terrorist state in the world after the US. Recently, the US has cleared sale of Israeli Phalcon airborne rudder system to India and the Government of India is expecting to shortly acquire arrow missile defence system which is more substantially a product of joint US-Israeli cooperation. It is reported in the media, Israel has already conduc-ted test on possibility of launching nuclear warheads in the Indian ocean off SriLankan coast and all these are happening with the blessings of Washington. Clearly, the US is providing India with these military ad-vantages through Israel lest Pakistan raises objection for helping India militarily.
In an article, ‘The dubious new alliance’ The Frontline dt 26.6.03, quoting from a recent 130-page report from the Pentagon, ‘Indo-US Military Relationship: Expectations and Perceptions’ a classified version which was first disclosed in Jane’s Foreign Report ... reports that, according to Pentagon, ‘‘...US relations with its traditional allies in Asia — South Korea and Japan had become ‘fragile’, and concludes that ‘India should emerge as a vital component of US strategy'’’
With the above end in view, the Pentagon and Government of India have already conducted, are conducting or going to conduct a series of joint military exercises on land, sea and in air, in hilly and jungle terrain of Mizoram, joint paratroopers exercise in Alaska, air-lift operation in India with US Air Force C-130 Cargo Aircraft and Indo-US joint ‘peace-keeping’ exercise Shantipath-03. Indian and US navies have been jointly conducting a number of exercises that include anti-submarine training and combatting piracy. For more than a year now, they have been jointly patrolling the heavily-traversed straits of Malacca. Encouraged by the US, Indian Navy has launched a 3-year programme to construct a fleet capable of projecting power into South China sea. Recently the US and India have also agreed upon to hold naval exercise with atomic submarine in Indian ocean.
With such developments and in this background the US now has been encouraged to envisage establishing military bases in India which shows what a lethal cosines the Indian state has developed for Indian military and strategic establishment with the US military expansionism. In this respect, Quoting a ‘Pentagon Report’ by an American defence expert The Statesman dt. 9.06.03 reports : ‘‘The Pentagon is undertaking a major review of the future of US bases in Asia in order to have more flexibility in responding to regional crises ... India is the most attractive alternative. For these reasons, several Americans underscored that eventual access to Indian military infrastructure represents a critical strategic hedge against dramatic changes in traditional US relationship in Asia... India has not only a good infrastructure, the Indian Navy has proved that it can fix and fuel US ships. Overtime port visits must become a natural event.’’ It continues, ‘‘India as ‘a viable player’ is supporting all naval missions, including escorting and responding to regional crises ... ‘the US Airforce would like the Indians to grant them access to bases and launching rights during operations, such as counter terrorism and heavy airlift support’ the American military officials said’’.
What do all these mean ?
After the visit of Advani to Washington while commenting on the mutual confidence and warmth expressed in their dialogue — between Indian team led by Advani and the US counterpart headed by Rumsfeld — the Times of India on 12.6.03 wrote, ‘‘Short of declaring a formal alliance, the two countries have now signalled their intent to work together in a global and regional architecture that accepts American pre-eminence but recognizes India’s own sphere of influence. ...’’ This is not new altogether. In our past issues we have repeatedly pointed out this truth in our political analyses. Invitation of India to the last G-8 summit as a guest member is a manifest testimony to the fact that India has reached proximity to this first ranking imperialist powers and is earning their recognition as a junior partner of them.
After dismantling of socialism in the USSR and fall of the Socialist Bloc, in the newly appeared ‘unipolar’ world, world imperialism, particularly its chieftain USA, has gone whole hog to establish its military hegemonism all over the globe including West Asia and South Asia. The US is trying to build up a long term strategic alliance in these areas and seriously views India as a most potential ally. With the rise of China as a strong competitor in world market as also its rise as a mighty military power, the US imperialists are steadily advancing to create a new axis of power in this region also to thwart China’s advancement. After invading Afghanistan and Iraq the US is making fictitious allegations against Iran and North Korea with mischievous motives — just like what it did against Iraq. Both the US and India have promised military help to Nepal to contain Maoist rebels there which is nothing but a plea to interfere in the internal affairs of Nepal. On the whole the US imperialists are up to creating a volcanic situation in the whole of West, South and South East Asia with a definite imperialist design to poke its nose everywhere and disturb peace in the region. The only purpose is extending military intervention beyond West Asia which poses a great danger to South and South East Asia. On the other hand, the ruling Indian bourgeoisie with its acquiring more and more imperialistic character is ever more eager to establish its hegemony on the neighbouring countries in South Asia. The US has already accepted India’s dominance in this region and for its own hegemonistic and imperialistic interests India is also hell bent on helping US expansionism for mutual help and advantage.
But here also India does not fail to keep its path open for bargaining with the US. That is why, as a part of creating counter pressure on the US, the Indian rulers are also developing closeness with China and Russia in economic and other fields and concluding treaties even for getting military hardwares from Russia. China and Russia are also trying to forge an alternative power bloc embracing India in Asia as a deterrent to growing US hegemony in the Asian region. But the main tilt of India is vividly towards the US imperialism and the above two developments are but the concrete manifestations of this definite swing. But this growing military tentacles of US imperialism on India, it goes without saying, is a great danger to the interest of the country. The rulers may always try to make the people believe that these are all in the interest of the nation — its economic and military power and security. But the people have to understand that these have nothing to do with their interests. The more the Indian ruling bourgeoisie and its subservient Central government particularly of the BJP-led NDA, is embracing globalization, liberalization, privatization and unabashedly spending millions upon millions of rupees to increase military might, the more poverty, unemployment and crises in every field of lives of the common people are accentuating to the extreme. Thus, the naked and dangerous pro-US, pro-imperialist foreign and defence policy is solely to the interest of the ruling bourgeoisie and completely against the interest of the common people. So, people have to rise in mighty and militant protest against this US imperialist venture and Indian imperialistic aspirations. This must be thwarted. We urge upon all Left and peace-loving forces to respond to this call to forge unity and release countrywide mass movement against this US imperialist design backed by the Indian rulers.