The United States and India can forge a stronger, more comprehensive and mutually beneficial relationship by building on the accomplishments of recent years. Looking beyond the upcoming national elections in India, the Obama administration is looking forward to developing a comprehensive agenda of cooperation with India across the full spectrum of economic, political and security challenges.
The relationship between the U.S. and India was uneasy throughout the Cold War and beyond. Relations began to thaw late in the Clinton administration. The Bush administration picked up the ball in 2005, and spent 3 years working to realize the U.S.-India Civil Nuclear Initiative, including a bilateral peaceful nuclear cooperation agreement, which makes civil nuclear trade possible with India.
In a recent speech at the Brookings Institution, a non-profit public policy organization based in Washington, D.C., U.S. Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg said that building on these accomplishments, the U.S. and India can forge a stronger, more comprehensive relationship to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
"The agreement not only provides a concrete platform for economic and technological cooperation between our two countries," said Deputy Secretary Steinberg, "but also offers a basis for moving beyond one of the most serious barriers of our political cooperation -- the status of India's nuclear program."
Deputy Secretary Steinberg went on to say that the U.S. and India can expand their cooperation to spur development and economic growth in the subcontinent, and confront shared problems regionally and globally.
"We will not always agree on how best to address the vital challenges of our times," said Deputy Secretary of State Steinberg, "but our common values and our intertwined fate require us to make the effort to seek common ground. That is the commitment of President Obama and Secretary Clinton," he said.