March 22nd, 2012
10:22 AM ET

Iran: A test for U.S.-India relations

Editor's Note: Jeff M. Smith is the Kraemer Strategy Fellow and director of the South Asia program at the American Foreign Policy Council.  Sarah McKeever is a Research Associate at the Council.

By Jeff M. Smith and Sarah McKeever - Special to CNN

In the aftermath of the landmark U.S.-India nuclear deal passed in 2008, Washington and New Delhi have deftly navigated the periodic irritants that plague all great power relations.  Thanks to admirable efforts in both capitals, a post-nuclear deal hangover has not succeeded in fraying the bonds forged over the past decade, despite disputes over visa restrictions, lost arms contracts, and differences over America’s Af-Pak strategy.  But it was only a matter of time before India’s ongoing relationship with the Islamic Republic of Iran presented a materially more serious challenge to bilateral ties.  With the advent of spring, the West’s standoff with Tehran over its rogue nuclear program is heating up, just as India is testing new avenues for cooperation with the pariah regime.  Without serious attention from both sides, this disconnect risks creating an enduring rift between the world’s largest and oldest democracies. FULL POST

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Topics: India • Iran • United States