India will be on a slippery slope once it agrees to discuss with the US its defence relationship with Russia on a case-by-case basis. It will be an affront to India’s sovereignty and self-respect to allow the US to have a say in its relations with Russia.
Although the US maritime presence is global, and every country in the world, in one way or another, falls under the responsibility of the various Pentagon commands, the official line justifying the US presence from the Horn of Africa to the Strait of Malacca will now be more assertive and direct.
The speech by Modi in the Shangri-La dialogue restated India’s desirable role as the spearhead of liberal international order. The speech moreover emphasized on the importance of peace, security, and cooperation through a rule-based order in the Indian Ocean.