September 7, 2021

The US no more wants a China-dominated world than India does. The US sees a democratic India as its best bet for countering China’s influence in South Asia. And despite the US’s chaotic withdrawal at the expense of Afghani civilians, and the justifiable criticism that followed it, its reach will continue in South Asia and matter for India’s regional relationships, including the one with Pakistan.

The last American troops in Afghanistan have flown out, ending the longest war the United States (US) has ever engaged in. There was agreement in the international community that the withdrawal was incompetent, at best, and a disaster, at worst. The withdrawal also generated many claims that it heralded the unravelling of American empire. Given that any sentence containing the words “American” and “empire” is contested not just in the US’s policy community but also among historians, it would be more useful to ask if the end of America’s 20-year war is also the end of American leadership and dominance. There, the jury is still out. And it is far from clear that India must, as some have argued, rethink the India-US partnership.

Manjari Chatterjee Miller Boston University CWP

Manjari Chatterjee Miller is Associate Professor (with tenure) of International Relations at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, and a Research Associate at the Oxford School of Global and Area Studies, Oxford University. She is currently on a two year public service leave of absence from BU, during which she is working as a Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

She works on foreign policy and security issues with a focus on South and East Asia. She specializes in the foreign policies of rising powers, India and China. Her book, Wronged by Empire: Post-Imperial Ideology and Foreign Policy in India and China (Stanford University Press, 2013) argues that the bitter history of colonialism affects the foreign policy behavior of India and China even today. She is currently working on rising powers, and the domestic ideational frameworks that explain their changing status.

Miller’s research has appeared in academic journals as well as non-academic outlets such as Foreign Affairs, the New York TimesThe Diplomat, the Asia Society Policy InstituteThe Hindu and the Christian Science Monitor. She has been a non-resident fellow at the Atlantic Council, a fellow at the Belfer Center of Science and International Affairs, Harvard University, visiting associate professor at  the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (National University of Singapore), and a visiting scholar at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing, and the Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University, Canberra. Her work has been supported by grants from the Smith Richardson Foundation, the East-West Center, the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, the South Asia Initiative, the Fairbank Center, and the US Department of Education. Before joining Boston University, Miller completed her PhD at Harvard University, and a post-doctoral fellowship at Princeton University.

Professor Miller’s areas of expertise include South Asia, East Asia, foreign/security policies of India and China, and ideational influences on international relations.

Photo Credit: Pixabay BedexpStock