What do you think the impact of the US- Pakistan tension is on Indian foreign relations?
I think that this represents an issue whereby India needs to progress very carefully. On one hand, the current tension between the United States and Pakistan can represent an instant validation of Indian sentiment for the last half century. It is a prototypical moment of geopolitical, "See I told you so." Yet, I think that this is a short term view of the issue. I don't see it as in India's best interests or in the region's best interests for India to pile on Pakistan. Given the political, social, and economic instability in Pakistan, as well as the presence of nuclear weapons in the nation's arsenal, a longer term approach is needed. I think that this moment could be a critical one in the relationship of the three nations if India could seize it in order to work out some type of stable relationship with Pakistan. This triangulation could bode such strong positive diplomatic relations in the region as staunch enemies work out agreements and understanding that allows the region to be stable. In doing so, Indian can become a major diplomatic power and a "kingmaker" so to speak. It requires a bold and long term vision that will not capitulate to the reactionary elements in its own culture of political appeasement. Yet, if it could seize this moment, it might help reap long term benefits down the road.
Kashmir remains the single most important outstanding issue. Until the two sides achieve resolution of this long standing dispute, Pakistan's security paradigm will remain India-centric, thus making all other concerns - including U.S. interests in Afghanistan - secondary. Kashmir's resolution is also imperative if India is to fulfill its dream of becoming a truly great global power. Make no mistake, Indo-Pak ties cannot expand substantially unless Kashmir is amicably resolved.
Now, it seems India's rising influence and strained Pakistan-U.S. ties have tipped the scales in favor of India. India is glad to see Pakistan in trouble. Pakistan will lose U.S. support in many areas, especially economic aid. The lack of U.S. assistance will surely put Pakistan at a disadvantageous position in its dealings with India. The shift in allegiances seems to be the turning point New Delhi has been looking for.