A senior official from the White House stated that certain actions taken by Beijing near the India-China border have been provocative. According to a report, the official further reiterated that the United States is committed to working more closely with New Delhi. Speaking at a think-tank in Washington, Kurt Campbell, the Deputy Assistant to the US President and Coordinator for the Indo-Pacific, clarified that India is not and will not be an ally of the United States.
“But it does not mean that we will not be close partners and share many things. That’s how we need to understand the role that India will play as a great nation on the global stage.
“We want to encourage that and support that and deepen this relationship, which is already very strong, probably the strongest people-to-people relationship of any country that the United States has on the global stage,” he said.
In a report, the Centre for a New American Security, a think tank, has warned that the recent increase in border intrusions and conflicts between India and China could lead to an all-out war and has implications for the United States’ Indo-Pacific strategy. According to the report, Indian officials believe that China is attempting to weaken India’s ability to challenge China’s dominance in the region by forcing it to allocate more resources to defend both its western border with Pakistan and its eastern border with China.
The report also recommends measures to deter and respond to further Chinese aggression along the India-China border. During the report’s presentation, Campbell, a member of the think tank, expressed concern over China’s provocative actions along the 5,000-mile border, which have alarmed India and its allies.
One of the main recommendations made by the Centre for a New American Security is that the United States should treat India’s territorial disputes with China as seriously as Beijing’s assertiveness against other US allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific. This should be reflected in all national security-related documents and speeches. The report also suggests that the US should provide India with advanced military technology to help defend its borders and work with India on coproduction and co-development of military equipment. Additionally, the US should assist India in strengthening its maritime and naval capabilities.
The think tank also recommends that the US and India conduct joint intelligence reviews to align assessments of Chinese plans and intentions along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and coordinate contingency planning in the event of a future India-China conflict.
The report calls for the US to speak out against Beijing’s “land-grabbing” efforts in multilateral forums such as the UN, Shangri-La Dialogue, G20, and East Asia Summit. Finally, the report recommends that the US be prepared to offer full support to India in the event of another border crisis or conflict with China.
Campbell said that the India-US relationship “is the most important bilateral relationship for the United States in the 21st century”.