Awakening tiger India's quest for expanded influence in the world
Walker, Robin J.
Knopf, Jeffrey W.
Lavoy, Peter R.
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This thesis examines India as a rising Asian and world power, and asks whether that rise will be successful and compatible with U.S. interests. It explores the history of Indian foreign policy as it was transformed from the inward-looking non-aligned movement through the end of the Cold War, economic liberalization, the development of nuclear weapons, improved relations with the West, and an outward focus based on increasing India's power. The three case studies examine the tools India is using to expand its influence in three key regions: soft power in Southeast Asia, hard power including military bases in Central Asia, and diplomatic efforts with the Middle East, especially Iran. The main argument is that India's foreign policy is primarily based on its interests in any given situation, in compliance with classic realist theory. The United States should not assume India will be a reliable ally, as India will continue to act based on its own interests. India is on the rise toward becoming a great power, and has or is developing all the tools for achieving that status. However, Indian policymakers have not yet developed a comprehensive grand strategy to allow India to truly achieve its potential.