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The Impact of Chinese Development of Nuclear Weapons on the Pakistan-Indian Dispute

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Master's thesis

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The India-Pakistan dispute began over a thousand years ago with the Moslem invasion of India. It is both religious and cultural and sharpened with the British seizure of India, which advanced the Hindu politically. The partitioning of the subcontinent into India and Pakistan was a result of the animosity between the Hindus and the Moslems, and it resulted in a number of disputes. The main dispute remaining between these two neighbors is the question of their continued existence as nations, but this dispute over time has become focused on Kashmir as a symbol, a symbol that Pakistan feels must pass to it if India is to show its willingness to live in peace. However, India feels that Kashmir cannot be given up without endangering the very unity of India. Until 1962, India and Pakistan were primarily concerned with each other, but in that year the invasion of Indias borders by China presented India with a new enemy, who in 1964 became the first Asian nuclear power. India, capable of developing its own nuclear device in 12-18 months, was now faced with the problem of how to counter this growing Chinese threat. If India chooses to rely on the protection of the United States and the USSR against Chinese nuclear blackmail rather than develop its own weapons, tension should not heighten between India and Pakistan. However, if India decides to develop its own nuclear capability, even if it is for peaceful purposes, it could force Pakistan to look for ways of countering a nuclear India by getting military protection from China. U.S. policies which fail to recognize Pakistans need for security and which make the need for military protection seem more important than economic assistance will force Pakistan to rely on China more fully. Such a course could bring about the downfall of CENTO and SEATO and result in the economic failure of both India and Pakistan, signaling an end to democracy on the subcontinent and much of the underdeveloped world.

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Government and Political Science
  • Nuclear Weapons

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