Five nations naval exercise indicates a strategic shift of power
Sep 08: The ongoing naval exercise called “Malabar Exercise” between five nations in the coast of Bay of Bengal including United States, India, Australia, Japan and Singapore has dragged many International political analysts to assume various things related to a strategic shift of power by a making new alliance. However, the countries participating have termed it as a usual naval exercise to strengthen their military capacity eying to eliminate sea piracy and also to fight terrorism especially maritime terrorism.
This five day long naval exercise that will conclude on Sep 09 is probably the largest war practice in Indian coast and also heading towards a new military cooperation between India, US, Japan and Australia. However this has been termed as an effort to restrain China as a super power in Asia.
The prime factor in the ongoing development in international political arena is India’s close relationship with United States, which sees India a long term partner especially in its war against terrorism and hence invites India as a global naval alliance.
Answering the question to the notion of China containment a top most US naval officer told that there is no message to China or Iran as it is just an usual exercise that have started in 1994. He also pointed out that this exercise is aiming at building cooperation for natural disasters relief programmes such as Tsunami and also fighting terrorism.
Earlier Indian Defence Minister A.K. Antony has also made it clear that there is no military alignment and it's only an exercise.
However, the entire world is watching the huge military event closely with all outlooks that may lead towards a new group. Though India was in the other side of Cold War but these days New Delhi is being one of the closest allies of Washington. India and US are also in the process of signing an agreement for civil nuclear deal. As India has already had a war in 1962 over border issue and as both the countries are growing over 9 percent economic growth, there is a sense of dominance in Asia. As a result the new partnership might be an effort to balance the power scenario.
Many also view this exercise as an answer to China as in August it has already conducted military exercises with Russia and other Central Asian Countries which was certainly an alarm to US. As China, a major player in Asia with a growing economy is trying to catch up Japan and US; it is obvious for China to be concern over this new development.
Though one can’t expect another cold war like situation in Asia but it certainly sends a sign that United States might be trying to form a group of Asian nations that will strengthen its position in Central Asia. Again with the creation of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) China and Russia are also in a close strategic partnership in Central Asia in terms of energy requirements, security, which one can see against US’s NATO that was to contain Russia.
Well, whatever the outcome but one of the major factor in different alliance is to build up one’s economy growth other than military, as its the energy needs that can drive forward the economy and Central Asia is now one of the key region for oil and natural gas.
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