C. Raja Mohan

C. Raja Mohan is Director, Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore, and the consulting editor on foreign affairs for ‘The Indian Express’. Before his association with The Indian Express began in 2004, Raja Mohan worked for The Hindu as its Washington correspondent and Strategic Affairs Editor. He was a distinguished fellow at the Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi.  In his academic avatar, Raja Mohan has been professor of South Asian Studies at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, and the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. As a think tanker, he worked at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses and Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi. He is on the editorial board of various international affairs journals and is affiliated with the Institute of South Asian Studies, Singapore; the Lowy Institute, Sydney; and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington DC. He is the author, most recently, of Samudra Manthan: Sino-Indian Rivalry in the Indo-Pacific.

Articles By C. Raja Mohan

Raja Mandala: What India has to offer in the Gulf

Delhi should support the region’s reform agenda, deepen economic and security cooperation.

By reorganising Kashmir’s political status, Modi govt is addressing a colonial mess

India’s recent decision to revoke the special status of Kashmir is about the unfinished task of extending effective territorial sovereignty over lands it has claimed.

J&K and the world: India’s strategies for internal security, territorial defence and diplomacy will have to act in unison

India’s diplomatic response must be at multiple levels. One is the legal dimension. Realists might scoff at legal niceties. But legal arguments are important and Delhi must present a solid legal brief about its actions, since there is little international understanding of the complex historical evolution of Kashmir.

Possibilities in the Northwest

After altering J&K’s status, Delhi needs strategy to manage external environment

Raja Mandala: Great game in Africa

Rajnath Singh’s visit to Mozambique offers an opportunity for Delhi to review the progress made in implementing the Indian Ocean strategy.

Raja Mandala: The moon and the law

There is valuable real estate for space-faring nations on the lunar surface. But international law is still unclear on ownership in space.

When Trump meets Imran

The essence of talks: What General Bajwa can deliver on regional peace, what he wants in return.

Raja Mandala: Maritime challenges and opportunities

The churn in the Persian Gulf provides India an opening to step up its strategic engagements beyond investments in the Chabahar port.

Raja Mandala: When countries moonwalk

There is renewed global interest in the moon. India must leverage its space legacy to gain lunar advantage.

Delhi’s strategy for Indo-Pacific needs to recognise the importance of the continent

As in India, so in the ASEAN, there was much initial suspicion about the meaning of and the motivations behind the term Indo-Pacific. If India’s preferred focus was on the Indian Ocean, the ASEAN had grown accustomed to the idea of the Asia-Pacific.

Mike Pompeo’s India visit is a chance to re-animate a stagnating relationship

The key to successful engagement with the US is to keep the negotiations going and make progress wherever one can. Americans are always ready to split the difference and move on. Delhi has been notorious for its inability to bring any negotiation to a close.

Raja Mandala: Xi’s Hong Kong headache

The street protests threaten to dim Beijing’s aura of invincibility.

Terms of engagement

The context of India-Pakistan relationship has changed significantly. Any framework for dialogue must reflect the new situation

Raja Mandala: India and the Sino-Russian alliance

The strengthening of ties between Russia and China present a challenge to Delhi. But it is better prepared than most to play the new Great Game.

Modi’s visit to Male, Colombo can affirm the salience of the Indian Ocean island states

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi travels to the southern seas, Delhi must come to terms with a number of realities.

Raja Mandala: From Tiananmen to digital dystopia

Rise of the all-knowing surveillance state has reinforced Deng Xiaoping’s model of open economy and closed polity in China.

Raja Mandala: Modi’s Taiwan opportunity

If there is one piece of real estate that holds the key to the geopolitics of East Asia, it is Taiwan.

Raja Mandala: In his second term, Modi must deal with turbulence unleashed by Trump’s challenge to global trading order

Modi needs to take a strategic view of India’s foreign trade, purposefully explore the possibilities for give and take with the US, and seize on the rearrangement of global production chains in the wake of the US-China trade war. No other set of issues will shape India’s future global trajectory more than a pragmatic reorientation of India’s trade strategy and the reformation of its negotiating structures.

Routine meetings between leaders will liberate the Subcontinent from formalism of summits

Rather than pray for the success of SAARC, the new government in Delhi should double down on informal diplomacy that could help pave the way for more purposeful regional cooperation — both bilateral and multilateral.

Raja-Mandala: If breaking with China is hard for America, making up with Russia might be harder

Whether Trump cuts a deal or escalates the economic war with China, Delhi can’t continue with its trade policy lassitude. On the other hand, the rejigging of the political relations between America, China and Russia might present Delhi with fleeting strategic opportunities that need to be seized quickly.

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