The signing of the 123 agreement between India and the US reflects the ever growing alliance between the ruling circles of these two countries.
The agreement signifies close collaboration in the nuclear energy field between the US and India. It also signifies that henceforth, India’s nuclear weapons program will be closely coordinated with overall US geo strategic aims. Being the supplier of nuclear fuel and technology, as well as having an important position in the Nuclear fuel Supplier Group of countries, the US will be in a position to strangle India’s nuclear plants if at some point, the path of the two countries diverged strategically.
There is a massive campaign going on to present the 123 agreement as a “victory” for India in terms of ensuring the right to make bombs. In the coming weeks and months, it will be debated endlessly what India has gained and what it has lost in signing this agreement. However, the key issue that needs to be kept in mind is this: that there is a strategic alliance between US and India which is being forged, and which is the background of the 123 agreement. In other words, to look at the 123 agreement in isolation from the growing strategic alliance between US and India will be to miss the point. And no amount of poring over the words of the 123 agreement is going to get us to understand this strategic alliance.
The strategic alliance between the US and India, has been in the making for a number of years, especially since the end of the Cold War. The US looks at India as a counterfoil to China, and as an ally against the peoples and countries of West Asia. This is apart from India being one of the growing markets for all kinds of technology, including nuclear technology and sophisticated military hardware. In other words, the US is looking at India as a strategic partner which will help it bring Asia under its hegemony, and remain the number one imperialist power, the sole superpower, in the decades to come.
What the US has promised India secretly and what India has promised the US secretly can only be speculated. This much is well known — treaties between imperialist powers like the US with other countries invariably involve agreements which are kept secret because if they became public, there would be uproar and opposition from the peoples of the countries concerned as well as of other countries against whom the treaties are directed!
An important point to note in this context is this: even though India is an imperialist power with pretensions to becoming a world class power, the relation between the US and India will be an unequal relationship weighted in favour of the US, which is the stronger power, militarily and economically.
The UPA Government has started a propaganda campaign through the media to make out that its negotiators have safeguarded “national interests” in signing the 123 agreement, by defending all the points that have been raised by various political parties, by the Indian nuclear establishment, and so on. The communists, the working class and people of India must expose the hollowness behind such claims. The Indian bourgeoisie has a long history of singing deals with the imperialists for mutual benefit, against the interests of the Indian working class and people. Such is the case this time too. The working class and people of India are fighting to destroy imperialism from the face of this earth. Therefore the Indian working class is opposed to the strategic alliance with the US, and it is opposed to the 123 agreement which forms part of this alliance.