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In this Book. Additional Information. Table of Contents. Cover Download Save. Table of Contents pp. The Lost Half Century pp. The Desert Rises pp. The Mountain Turns White pp. Jaswant's Village pp. Stuck on the Tarmac pp. Soft Stonewalling pp. The Avatar of Evil pp.

Engaging India: Diplomacy, Democracy, and the Bomb

From Kargil to Blair House pp. Sisyphus at India House pp. A Guest in the Parliament pp. Unfinished Business pp.

Bharat Karnad and Meena Menon discuss India's Foreign Policy and National Security

The rapturous look in the President's eyes and his obvious delight in playing the role of Krishna, symbolized the possibilities in mutual relations between the two countries. A promise that began unfolding from then onwards and which has lasted over the years till now. Finally, of course nothing came of it, for the treaty itself was mired in controversy. There was insufficient appreciation in India that the Republican Senate would never ratify it and in fact the Treaty was doomed even from the moment of its signature.

The Book suggests that the Indian government seriously considered this option till the end.

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But, it is a tribute to Indian establishment that it was determined from the beginning to act responsibly, a course from which it has never wavered. The doctrine of 'minimum credible deterrence' was also in line with this thinking. Though the exact nature of this capability or its precise parameters can not be clearly enunciated particularly at this stage, such a posture will be in keeping with India's national interests and at lowest levels of affordability.

There are two heroes in the Book, Strobe himself and Jaswant Singh. Presently, the President of the Brookings Institution, the world will hear much more of Strobe in the future depending on the fortunes of political parties in the US. Jaswant's political career may have come close to an end depending once again on the vagaries of domestic politics.

But, by all accounts his performance during the dialogue was awesome. Almost single handedly, with distant though total support from Prime Minister Vajpayee, he developed a winning combination from an indifferent hand.

Engaging India: Diplomacy, Democracy, and the Bomb

There should never be winners or losers in a diplomatic engagement and truly in this extended encounter both sides won. Finally, the story may well end in irony.


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The expectations of India's leaders at the time of the nuclear tests were that it would finally allow India a seat at the top table. The whole world laughed at the notion. Global power, they said, came from economic and soft power and the era of hard power and nuclear weapons.

Engaging India: Diplomacy, Democracy, and the Bomb - Talbott, Strobe -

The book suggests that the Indian government seriously considered this option till the end. Merely six years from then, with the possibility of UN Security Council reforms on the agenda, who will indeed have the last laugh?

Engaging India: Diplomacy, Democracy and the Bomb.