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'Bush should craft new laws for N-export'
March 15, 2006 21:17 IST
As the US Congress debates the Indo-US civil nuclear energy agreement, an American foreign affairs analyst has observed that the strategic importance of India is "undeniable" and suggested that the Bush administration should craft new laws for civilian nuclear export that fit present realities.
"Ideally, it should be one that would strive to make our policy consistent across the board, as we simultaneously work with emerging allies like India to meet their energy needs while at the same time try to deal with the nuclear aspirations of rogue nations," Helle Dale noted in his op-ed piece 'Trusting India' in the Washington Times daily.
The new legislative guidelines could include things like track record on non-proliferation and solid democratic governance along with tougher technical safeguards, he wrote.
"The principle should be that civilian nuclear power in itself is not the problem; the problem is dangerous regimes that will misuse it to develop weapons to threaten their neighborhood. There is a world of difference between India and Iran -- the only similarity being in fact, that both countries begin with an 'I'," Dale noted.
He said it is, therefore, not surprising that the White House came to the conclusion that striking the deal with India was a good idea.
"In an increasingly uncertain world, the United States needs new allies and partners, and the strategic importance of India is undeniable. India is the world's largest democracy. Trade and investment between the United States and India are growing by leaps and bounds. It's the kind of long-term ally we should want to have," he said.