Defence Diplomacy

Topics: United Nations, Security, National security, International security, Peacekeeping, International relations / Pages: 18 (4425 words) / Published: Jan 17th, 2013

Preventive Diplomacy,
Defence Cooperation
& the Pursuit of
Cooperative Security:
The Indian Experience

Swapna Kona Nayudu*

This article is an exploration of the effectiveness of defence cooperation as a means of preventive diplomacy. The paper begins by suggesting that both defence cooperation and preventive diplomacy are concepts rooted in cooperative security. For the purposes of this paper, cooperative security is understood as an overarching concept that comprises alliances, collective security and preventive action. The fundamental claim of the article is that defence cooperation has more to offer than its own immediate benefits. The paper discusses how that value can be exploited towards a larger project of preventive diplomacy. As an illustration of these possibilities, the Indian experience of defence cooperation in the context of South Asia is also discussed.

In 1995, Joseph Nye argued that the present era was one of dramatic power transitions. He said that the nature of power and the ways in which power is exercised play important roles in causing o r preventing conflicts. 1 H e also said that the nature of power transitions makes military conflict between the great powers highly unlikely. Nye’s thesis pivoted around the US, Europe and Japan, citing them as examples of democratic powers with shared values and interlocking institutions. He was less optimistic about other parts of the world.
Understanding Preventive Diplomacy

He also said that

the nature of power transitions makes military conflict between the great powers highly unlikely. In the post Cold War-era, Russia and China posed serious challenges to regimefriendly diplomacy. Although efforts at engaging these states had seen some limited successes, inter-state, territorial and border conflicts in these regions seemed intractable. The situation was not very different on the Indian subcontinent.
The importance given to the arms build-up in

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