India-US Naval Drills: How US using India to counter China

India-US Naval Drills: How US using India to counter China
ISLAMABAD: US has long been concerned at the rising Chinese Military might in the region. Chinese Navy assertion in the South China Sea has been the bone of the contention between the two super powers in recent times and it is said that if ever US and Chinese Armed Forces come across each other face to face the venue is likely to be the South China Sea in the Pacific.


US has also accorded the trade agreement named Trans Pacific Partnership TPP with 11 East Asian Nations minus the China and is holding regularly the naval and military exercises with Chinese rival Japan in the East and South Chinese Sea.


However US is much desirous and eager to include Indian Navy in its ambit of the Pacific joint drills against China.


US consider India as the most appropriate Nation which could stand tall against China in future. India too has the same sentiments and desires in The Region.


However India is cognizant of the fact that it cannot alone stand in front of Chinese indigenous military might, thus requires US support to to so.


Growing concern over emerging China and its naval activity in India’s back yard — the vast Indian Ocean — have brought the two once-distant militaries closer than ever before, according to a report in The Washington Post on Monday.


Admiral Harry Harris, commander of the US Pacific Command, Washington is looking to garner more support from India and other regional players to continue the so-called freedom-of-navigation patrols in the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea.


“In the not too distant future, American and Indian Navy vessels steaming together will become a common and welcome sight throughout Indo-Asia-Pacific waters, As we work together to maintain freedom of the seas for all nations,” he said.


India holds more military exercises with America than with any other country, and the two allies are working to expand their cooperation.


New Delhi agreed to allow Washington to use its military bases in exchange for weapons technology to help India narrow the gap with China.


The two sides indicated that their navies will hold talks on anti-submarine warfare (ASW), an area of sensitive military technology and joint tactics that only allies share.


Indian navy officials have reported sighting Chinese submarines four times every three months on an average basis, with most of the sightings being registered near India's Andamans and Nicobar islands in the vicinity of the Malacca Straits.


More than 80 percent of China's fuel supplies pass through this entry to the South China Sea.


As part of their new naval cooperation against Chinese subs, U.S. and India are flying the new version of the US P-8 spy aircraft, which is the Pentagon’s most effective submarine hunting weapon.


The P-8 or Poseidon is capable of using torpedoes, depth charges, SLAM-ER missiles, Harpoon anti-ship missiles and other weapons.


In the latest development India, Japan and US are holding trilateral naval drills starting from Friday in Western Pacific.


The drills named Malabar are annually held between US and India since 2007 and Japan is included permanently since last year.


The drills include anti-submarine warfare and air defense training  that will last till June 17.


Hyuga helicopter carrier, P-3C and P-1 patrol planes, and US-2 rescue aircrafts will take part from Japan side.


While India will send its four warships consisting of guided missile stealth frigates INS Satpura and Sahyadri: INS Shakti, and US will send its 7th Fleet in the drills.


The most important aspect of the emerging strategic partnership between  India and US is that both nations are close to inking  a logistic agreement whereby in near future the Indian Naval bases will soon be witnessing US Naval Fleet stationed at the Indian Naval Bases.


US and India are closing on defence arms and ammunitions deals worth $10 billions which include a future state of the art Air Craft Carrier for the Indian Navy along with other high tech equipment.


However the most interesting aspect of the Indo-US emerging partnership is that in a bid to counter China soon Indians are going to witness US boots on ground Indian soil.