Security Challenges along the Indian Ocean Littoral, Indian and US Perspectives
C. Uday Bhaskar and Cdr KK Agnihotri
The Indian Ocean Region (IOR) is gaining strategic importance on the global maritime map.
Besides connecting several important countries and being home to a very large proportion of the world’s population, almost forty per cent of global seaborne tradeand seventy percent of hydro- carbon products transit this Ocean.
The vastness if the IOR poses several security challenges and it is also widely accepted that a comprehensive focus on the spectrum of challenges is lacking. These include the problem of piracy, the possibility of renewed terrorism at and from the sea and the pervasive smuggling of people, narcotics and arms.
This increased activity and volatility has forced India to look beyond the subcontinent to the larger periphery of the IOR. The United States is also deeply involved in its own security and stability operations along an arc-from the Red Sea to Pakistan. Speculation about China’s future intention in the Indian Ocean continues to grow since Beijing is deeply concerned about the potential disruption of its energy supply lines from the Middle East and Africa.
This book contains a comprehensive overview of relevant and instructive perspectives of Indian and US security experts. It seeks to indentify the key maritime security issues and explores the potential contribution which the Indian and US Navy can make in meeting these challenges. The avenues for greater cooperation between the two navies, to serve as a catalyst for wider cooperation along the Indian Ocean littoral have also been suggested.