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Research Report

A NEW EQUATION: U.S. Policy toward India and Pakistan after September 11

Lee Feinstein
James C. Clad
Lewis A. Dunn
David Albright
Copyright Date: May. 1, 2002
Pages: 48
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 5-12)
    Lee Feinstein

    The shifting geopolitical furniture on the subcontinent since last September’s terrorist attacks has placed the United States in the unaccustomed position of having good relations with India and Pakistan at the same time. This has helped to forge a consensus in the United States on some of the core challenges India and Pakistan face, and on the approach Washington must pursue to advance its long-term goals for the region.

    Perhaps most welcome is a growing convergence of views between “regionalists” and “functionalists,” that is, specialists whose expertise focuses on India or Pakistan on the one hand, and those concerned primarily...

  2. (pp. 13-22)
    James C. Clad

    Despite persistent tensions, India and Pakistan manage their rivalry better than alarmist views of nuclear competition often admit. Durability and continuity of national security objectives persist in each country.

    The current Afghan-focused crisis poses to each country an opportunity, welcome or not, to influence longer-term American policy directions. Its outcome may yield new leverage for changes in an Indo-Pakistani bilateral agenda defined—but by no means encompassed—by a half-century dispute over the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. A post-Taliban Afghan regime points to major changes in Central and South Asia’s power balance and possibly a permanent diminution...

  3. (pp. 23-32)
    Lewis A. Dunn

    The September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon—and the start of what could well be a prolonged campaign to root out al Qaeda, the wider Osama bin Laden terrorist network, and their supporters—have created yet another turning point in U.S. relations with South Asia. Even before those attacks, the Bush administration was changing the U.S. stance toward India. All signs pointed to a full lifting of the economic sanctions imposed after the May 1998 nuclear tests, increased technology exchange, and renewed actions to establish a longer-term strategic relationship with India. Such changes are now...

  4. (pp. 33-44)
    David Albright

    During times of relative political and social normalcy, the security of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal is probably adequate and could be expected to improve consistent with other nuclear programs worldwide. However, fallout from Pakistan’s decision to cooperate with the United States following the September 11 terrorist attacks may severely test Pakistan’s security system throughout its nuclear weapons complex. Instability in Pakistan could make its nuclear weapons and stocks of nuclear explosive material dangerously vulnerable to theft. If domestic instability leads to the downfall of the current Pakistani government, nuclear weapons and the means to produce them could fall into the hands...