Cain Marko wrote:
So who is at fault here? The evil Russians or babus doing the contract negotiations? If China can develop variant after variant of roosi maal, what stops India. As a far more powerful buyer who unlike China has access to western hardware, has India leveraged its position to develop its own variants? Why not? And can you truly blame Russia for this?
You are forgetting the blonde Natasha and her equally sexy brunette friend, Ivana, that the Russians have cleverly put in front of our babus to cloud their judgement. So yes, I still blame Russia.
And how do we know that all American beauties and French cheries are not being appropriately plied towards the oh so innocent and naive babu, hainji? Or are the Chinese negotiators simply immune to the charms of Natasha? Maybe they are using the eunuchs of their imperial court to negotiate.... Time to castrate the babus I say.
nachiket wrote:If not, they will promise it to us for peanuts, sign the contract and then arm-twist us for a whole lot of money just to deliver it, like they did during the Gorshkov saga.
Uhh, the Indian side was only too willing to look at a deal that was too good to be true.... And frankly, India got a decent carrier with a complement of 45 fighters for about $5 billion, not too bad. In any case, What were the multiple naval inspection teams doing while in Russia.... I remember even arm chair types had enough expertise to suggest that this could be a boondoggle, don't tell me the guys in the know didn't know. Btw this is no different from the Scorpene saga or the umpteen drdo sagas that run over initial cost estimates.
Point is.... The Russians are willing to trade technology that the others are simply not as in the case of nuke subs, space etc... , and if others are willing, the cost is well beyond GOI reach... Happens time and time again with French and euro goodies for example. The Israelis have slightly changed that dynamic but they have limited tech to offer and going by the barak 8 story, even here IP is not transferred.
I'm not saying that the russkis are sugar daddies..... They will certainly extract their pound of flesh. But I'm betting that they will trade some truly valuable stuff in exchange for that meat and that too at prices that India can afford. The MKI vs M2K battle in the 90s is a clear example.
Bait and switch is not a Russian monopoly. As in the case of any market transaction, caveat emptor is applicable.
As far the US is concerned, I see this as a great opportunity for it to wean India outside Russian influence and create a check vs the dragon, all in one deft stroke. Offer something truly special, technology and price wise, and enjoy Indian support, market access and partnership for decades to come. As others have found out the gravy train is rich, promising and long-lasting with India. Not like the middle east sheikhs whose viability lasts only to the extent of their oil supplies, which could be blind sided in the coming years by cleaner resources.