Accession Number:

ADA053503

Title:

Soviet and American Naval Forces in the Indian Ocean: Arms Race, Military Balance, or Zone of Peace,

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI CENTER FOR ADVANCED RESEARCH

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1976-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

135.0

Abstract:

The main points of the history of the American installation on Diego Garcia, especially its complicated legislative history, and of the Soviet naval presence in the Indian Ocean since 1968, including the base at Berbera, are traced to early May, 1976. Some of the theories that have been advanced to explain the motives behind the activities of the two superpowers are considered, especially the argument that preparations by the United States during the 1960s to deploy SSBNs in the Indian Ocean prompted the Soviet Union to deploy forces there as a defensive reaction. The almost unanimous opposition by the countries of the littoral to the superpower presence is considered through analysis of the results of canvassing by the Department of State in those countries and certain public statements by their governments. The principal points of the United Nations resolution declaring the Indian Ocean a zone of peace are reviewed. The paper concludes that the arguments on the public record to support the need for the base on Diego Garcia have not been persuasive, that the base has not been the political asset for the United States in the Indian Ocean region its advocates claim it is, and that a review of current policy ought to be made, carefully weighing the military advantages claimed for the base against the political and psychological price already being paid by the United States for its acceptance of the principles embodied in the U.N. peace zone declaration and its willingness to enter into negotiations to translate that declaration into a workable international agreement. Author

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Marine Engineering
  • Naval Surface Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE