China’s stakes and vulnerabilities in South Asia have grown. U.S. leaders should make use of this.
Ten years have passed since 26/11, the three-day assault by Pakistan-based terrorists in Mumbai that stands as India’s analogue to the 9/11 attacks in the United States. During and after the attack, U.S. officials were central to the crisis-management effort that prevented a larger conflict between India and Pakistan. Today, it is unclear whether the United States could play that role, thanks to the decline in its capacity for crisis management in South Asia. But as U.S.-Pakistan relations deteriorate, Chinese influence in Pakistan grows — as does Beijing’s economic and geostrategic stakes in maintaining stability in the region. Both U.S. and Chinese action may be necessary to walk the region back from a nuclear brink, and so U.S. leaders should adapt to changed circumstances by working with Chinese and other counterparts to shape co-management mechanisms.
This article was originally published on December 4, 2018 in Defense One. Read the full article here.