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It's been a while, but as they say, better late than never. We finally made some time to redesign our blog and soon we will have our own independent website. The blog helped us reach a huge audience and generate a lot of interest in this area. As a result, the format and (utility) of the blog seems overwhelmed, hence the transittion to the dedicated site. The URL for the new site and content will be disclosed soon. Till then, enjoy the blog and continue to contribute to our posts.
USA urges India to buy American weapons
Russian defense industry has suffered another blow in India as the Russian President Putin was solemnly declaring friendship to his Indian counterpart. According to Mr. Putin, "Russia-India relations are developing today in the best possible way." However, the situation is not so optimistic with regard to prospects for Russian arms sales to India.

India may stop buying Russian military aircraft and air defense systems altogether. Meanwhile, the United States is making unprecedented concessions in the field of military and technical cooperation while imposing its friendship on India. USA is offering India to launch joint production of the outdated F-16 fighters in India. The offer is ostensibly made "in token of friendship." Americans are also hinting at a potential sale of its much-vaunted Patriot air defense system to India.

India is now holding a tender for the order of 126 multi-purpose lightweight fighters for the national air force. There are 4 bidders at the moment including Russian Aircraft Concern MiG for the MiG-29M/M2; Lockheed Martin for the F-16; SAAB for the fighter Gripen; and DASSAULT for the fighter Mirage 2000. In accordance with the tender terms, a winner should launch licensed production of its aircraft in India. The Russians believed that their greater flexibility with regard to licensed aircraft production would be an advantage at the tender. Representatives of Rosoboronexport indicated earlier that neither American nor Swedish manufacturers had any experience regarding cooperation with the Indian side in the area of aircraft assembly. However, the above circumstances did not prevent the Americans from taking a step toward the potential customers. Needless to say, the Indian-assembled F-16 would be a lot cheaper than its equivalent put together in the U.S. or Europe. There is still an excess of qualified labor supply in India, and labor costs are low. The Indian air force is likely to spend as much on domestic assembly of U.S. fighters as it would spend on licensed production of Russian aircraft. The Americans made an unprecedented decision, no doubts about it. So far just a handful of countries has been given such a "privilege" despite the possibility for partial joint production of the fighter stipulated in the original provisions of the F-16 development program. The F-16 is currently manufactured outside the U.S. by Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Netherlands, and South Korea.

For the first time in history the U.S is making such an offer to a country that is neither a NATO member state nor it has Americans troops deployed on its territory. What are the reasons behind this spectacular move? Aside from economic motivations, it is obviously a matter of geopolitics.

First, the U.S is beginning to gradually force out Russian, Ukrainian, and Chinese arms suppliers out of the region by offering India its state-of-the-art weapons at a reasonable price. Ukraine and China sell arms mostly to Pakistan, a longstanding rival of India's. The Americans are dealing successfully with Pakistan too. The Pakistanis always showed consistency in their simple stance on the issue of U.S. arms sales to India. They always objected to such deals while asking for more U.S. arms for themselves. It is unlikely that the U.S. will fail to cut a similar deal for the F-16 with Pakistan, terms of a contract will probably copy those of the Indian deal i.e. joint production of the fighter in a buyer's country. In any case, the issue has been already discussed during the talks between the U.S. and Pakistan.

Washington is also keen to hold back China's growing influence in the Asian Pacific region. Shortly after the news about the U.S. plans for launching joint production of the fighter in India, Reuters put out an article titled USA: apprehensive about China while selling arms to India. The article cites Lt. General Jeffrey B. Kohler, director of Cooperation for Defense and Security. Mr. Kohler believes the modern arms sales to India and Pakistan that should be viewed only in the context of growing Chinese strength. The "yellow threat" looks much more scary to the Americans than the threat posed by the Soviet Union in the past. Therefore, the U.S. is likely to make any concessions as it supplies more or less modern weapons to countries which are relatively loyal to America. Washington aims to reach a sort of local parity with Beijing.

Russia and its arms exports can hardly qualify for the above geopolitical game. The situation is to advantage of the Americans since they know better than anybody else that Russia's defense industry heavily depends on export deals. These days a delay in talks on any foreign contract can bring about dire consequences including bankruptcy for any company of the Russian defense industry. Should Russia leave the traditional markets of the Asian Pacific region (high profitability and capacity being the main features of the region's markets), the scale of the Russian defense industry will shrink significantly. Besides, the move would signify a final devaluation of Russia's foreign influence in the region.


Posted by Jehangir Unwalla @ 7:26 AM


The global defense industry is constantly shaping how borders are protected, wars are fought, terrorists are tracked and caught, and global security maintained. We aim to track news, policy, military exercises and strategic affairs between the world's largest democracies - India and the United States.

Given the vast interest and passion we have in this field, we decided to launch this blog to give visitors the ability to track these developments, exchange ideas and link to other sources of Information. Our primary sources and links can be found on the main page. Some of the pieces published herein our ours, otherwise it is reproduced from other sources (news, think-tanks or publications) to provide our readers the ability to interact and respond. The link to the original source can always be found under the article. Articles and op-ed pieces written by us include thoughts and opinions that are ours, not those of any government or political party. Last but not least, this blog is not-for-profit, nor is it financially supported by any corporation, entity or organization. It is purely to be used for informational purposes and not commercial and/or profit motives.

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About The Blog
This blog focuses on current issues concerning defense and national security for the world's largest democracy - India. It is updated regularly providing readers with in-depth information on technology transfer, acquisitions, counter-terrorism, security and military collaboration and strategic dialogue between India and the United States. The site includes links to top defense policy & research institutes, think-tanks, military sites and research organizations.
Cooperative Cope Thunder
Nikhil and Jehangir wrote an exhaustive article about the Cooperative Cope Thunder joint event. Their article was publihed in Vayu magazine. Click on the link below to read the in-depth article with amazing pictures courtesy of mark Farmer at
Guard members are ordinary people doing extraordinary things.
If you're looking for a way to serve your community and country while maintaining your full-time civilian career, the National Guard is for you. Click below to learn more about the proud history of the Army National Guard.
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