Fawad A. Nazami


In the international system, states struggle for power and build up military capabilities to protect themselves against any aggressor or their enemies. When states fail to accumulate adequate power on their own, they form alliances with their friends and unify their military resources to balance their enemy’s power and guarantee their survival. Afghanistan, in it’s first decade of democratic rule, lives in one of the most anarchical region in the world. It does not have the capability to defend itself against external aggressors. The United States is helping the country to fight against terrorism and insurgencies but has no interests to defend the country against other states in the region. This article argues that the most rational option for Afghanistan is to ally itself with India. It is in the national interests of both Afghanistan and India to unify their capabilities and respond against potential aggressors. Both Afghanistan and India have democratic governments committed to following international norms and cooperation. They have mutual security threats: terrorism, extremism and insurgencies supported by Pakistan’s military and intelligence services. The security of Afghanistan has strategic importance to India. Afghanistan can serve as a bridge to Central Asia’s energy resources and alter India’s continental trade. A formal alliance between Afghanistan and India can secure and stabilize the region. It can help balance the power between Afghanistan and Pakistan and function as an arm to the Afghan diplomacy with Pakistan. This will result in visible positive consequences in the Afghan peace and reconciliation process. The regional reaction against Afghanistan will be constructive. Iran, Russia, Central Asia and China all favor stability and security in Afghanistan as opposed to the security vacuum that will negatively affect the region. A stable Afghanistan has positive commercial implications for the countries in the region. Pakistan will be the only country in the region that will oppose an Afghan-Indo alliance formation. Pakistani policy makers view any close Afghan-Indo relationship as being against their national interests. While the survival of Afghanistan and the security of India are under threats, the two countries should not hesitate to form such an alliance. 


Alliance, Balance of power, Afghan-Indo relations, Afghanistan’s security, Indian foreign policy,

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