od of India (15 March, 1959 – 7September, 1962)The Role of Decision Making in the Pre-Crisis Peri Essayod of India (15 March, 1959 – 7September, 1962) Boyko Iaramov Introduction to International Relations Professor Bond More than thirty years have passed since the dramatic cling of arm inthe remote Himalayan region of the Sino-Indian border. This Time gap seems to beappropriate for a correct reexamination of the conflict. The account of India’sattempt to find balance with China, ever since the Kongska Pass incident in 1959until the attack of 1962, is not merely a fact sheet that we can brows and tossand toss away.
In stead we have to link each idea to the event and causes thatmight have played a role in the conflict. Ever since 1959 the border problem between Asia’s biggest two nation-states has been picking up speed at a threatening speed. The year 1962 was theunfortunate year for India which knocked out any possibility of understandingbetween China and India. Of course, such an act of terror could have not startedwithout some kind of the reason, whatever it may be. The chronological order ofpre-crisis decisions taken India’s authorities are of great importance. The role of the decision-makers before the time of the armed conflicthad a big significance for India’s position on political and economic matters inthe continent of Asia.Order now
A major figure in India’s decision making was JawaharlalNehru, leader of the Congress Party, head of the Planning Commission and chiefspokesman of the government in Parliament. These titles not only made him animportant nationalistic figure but also Gandhi’s appointed heir and a “majorarchitect of India’s political institutions” (Brecher, 1959). Krishna Menon,”the controversial defense minister consulted in almost every issue” along withPandit Govind Ballabh Pant was also a figure of great importance (Langyel, 1962). This importance was mainly derived from the fact that both shared the sameoverall world view of Nehru. However, in order to understand the cruicialimportance of decision-makers, we shall looked seperately at each of India’s topmen. Menon was highly important and useful to Nehru in the essence that thelatter helped Nehru convey his thought and policies to the outside world in aforceful and organized manner (Brecher, 1959).
But as Rajani Palme Dutt said inhis book “The problem of India,” foreign policy was exercised “more behind thescenes than in meetings of the committee. ” Both Menon and Nehru acted to thedesire of Nehru. It was often when the Foreign secretary would take to Pantdrafts of diplomatic correspondence and get the reaction which was usually atNehru’s request (Hoffmann,1990). Foreign policy makers Nehru, Menon and Pant shared a common world viewwhich clearly showed their psychological predisposition, drawn from the sourcesof their personality, idiosyncrasy, ideology, tradition, culture and history. Aswe shall see further down, in the mainstream of common ideas and beliefs, theyindeed had some differences. But all these men used the “attitudinal prism”(Hoffmann, 1990), the lens through which they filtered and structured theinformation thus perceiving the world.
One set of Indian beliefs referred to therole India should play world. This role was supposed to reflect the fact thatIndia was a considerably new nation-state. India also had to preserve her independence of action. It didn’t simplyfight for independence simply to become a camp follower of any of the Cold WarPower blocs. The restrictions and limitations that such a position imply wouldbe against India’s national interest. And it was exactly this nonalignmentpolicy of Nehru between the two sides of the Cold War which was the projectionof Indian nationalism into world affairs (Maxwell, 1970).
Nehru also expressedthe idea that India was an Asian power that should not be overlooked at. Hedemonstrated that “in regard to any major problem of a country or a group ofcountries of Asia, India has to be considered” (Gopal, 1980). During the 1950’s and 1960’s Nehru and his advisors realized that Indiawas playing a far more than neutral role in the Cold War politics. She was avery important player on the world stage, where questions of war and peace weredecided. He recognized that in s bipolar world, in which relations between thesuperpowers were based mainly on “balance-of-power calculations” (Hoffmann,1990), a nuclear holocaust, for example, had become highly likely. He soughtthat India should stay out of the superpowers’ way in the nuclear arms .