India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the US congress on June 8th. His speech highlighted the similarities between the US and India and the ongoing crisis beseeching the region. His address served to bridge and further relations between the two giant nations however, remarks from both Modi and Obama served to alarm Pakistan and China.
India today stands with a huge economy and its position and influence in Asia grows with PM Modi’s visit to Afghanistan to inaugurate a dam built in partnership with India. His visit goes beyond inaugurations as it serves to bolster confidence in Afghanistan of India’s concern and active role in the ongoing fight against the Taliban. This comes as an alternative to Pakistan’s military action against the terrorist organisation.
Consequences of the Pakistan Taliban and Afghan Taliban joining forces are far too great for the army to be able to carry out the offences needed to put a halt to the insurgence of the Afghan Taliban. Pakistan cannot afford to bring the war to its own soil. The problem expands to the country’s own resources and abilities, or inability to stop the terrorist force. Sentiment in Pakistan towards the US has taken a turn for the worse over the past few years as the US continues to mount pressure on Pakistan’s military forces to curb and control the Taliban problem.
Accusations from Modi of Pakistan incubating violence and terrorism led to President Obama reprimanding Pakistan.
“We believe that Pakistan and India stand to benefit from practical cooperation and encourage direct dialogue aimed at increasing cooperation and reducing tensions. And that includes steps by Pakistan to ensure that its territory is not used to plan attacks in India and that Pakistan takes steps to address or to go after, I think, all the terrorist groups that are currently using its territory.” – Mark Toner, Deputy Spokesperson
The brewing friendship has led to Obama endorsing India’s bid for the Nuclear Supply Group.
This has proved to further alert Pakistan as it brings into question its own position in regards to gaining membership. Any country joining the NSG must be a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, which both Pakistan and India are not. Obama’s endorsement has led to cries of discrimination from Pakistan that submitted its application this year. Pakistan has since turned to New Zealand, Russia and South Korea to increase its own chances. However, this late awakening seems to be a direct result of India’s progress rather than Pakistan’s own plan for admission. The hope is that India’s acceptance will pave the way for its neighbor.
Pakistan must work independently to satisfy the members of the NSG to view the country as stable and responsible to be admitted. However, there must also be a recognition of the similar technicalities facing India and Pakistan’s application.
China has voiced blatant opposition to India’s acceptance into the group. This comes from the genuine fear of a cultivation of an intensified nuclear arms race between India and Pakistan (possibly bankrupting Pakistan since India has much stronger buying power) which would further threaten the stability of the region if India alone is accepted. China also has its own direct interests in mind as India’s growing economy and influence set it on the path to becoming a prominent rival.
While Modi was speaking to Congress, Pakistan media was going crazy, because the former President, Pervez Musharraf, was denied a visa to go to the United States. He was rejected because he was required to apply from Pakistan as he is no longer a special diplomatic person in Pakistan, and therefore he must apply from inside Pakistan. Pakistan used this to go off on the United States.