India Without the Deep Pockets
For India, the lesson is that, keeping China out requires purses far deeper than ours. Rather sensibly then, India has chosen to go ahead with the West Container Terminal anyway, rather than sit it out. Indian firms could even consider using the SEZ for their own profit.
Then there is the ever-present Tamil nationalist issue, with Tamil groups inside and outside the country stating their strong protests. But the most obvious is this huge influence just on our doorstep, which is only likely to get bigger by the day.
Meanwhile, a trilateral secretariat has already been set up in the Sri Lankan Navy Headquarters, to facilitate the dialogue between Sri Lankan, Indian and Maldivian National Security Advisors.
Colombo may need some quiet assistance on the naval side, as it strengthens its presence near its major ports. But for that, Colombo has to be more alive to the geopolitical threats it faces, even as it manages its economy as best as it can. The fire on…