Less than meets the eye
A critical assessment of the military-to-military dimension of the U.S.–India security partnership
in The future of U.S.–India security cooperation
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The sector of the U.S.–India security partnership involving direct uniformed military-to-uniformed military engagement is a case of the whole being less than the sum of the parts. Comprised mostly of annual joint Army, Navy and Air Force exercises, the military-to-military relationship suffers, in the U.S. view, from a reluctance on the part of the government of India to commit to training for potential future combat scenarios. The exercises remain small: in the case of the air forces, sporadic and limited in nature; in the case of the land exercises less than a battalion of men on each side participate; and in the case of the naval maneuvers, exercises are explicitly limited to non-combat missions and scenarios and avoid the exchange of real-time data and classified communications. More importantly, the military-to-military relationship is hindered by very different military structures and strategies. Behind the photo ops, there is less than meets the eye.


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