Home Foreign Policy India “Risks Triggering Sanctions” Over Russian S-400 Deal, US Warns

India “Risks Triggering Sanctions” Over Russian S-400 Deal, US Warns


Just ahead of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit to India next week, the State Department reiterated US frustration with New Delhi over its deal to purchase S-400 antiaircraft missile system from Russia.

India already appeared to blow off last week’s US urging it not to go through with the purchase, which comes at a delicate time of severe strain with Turkey over precisely the same issue. A State Dept. briefing hinted at the Turkey issue alongside ally India seeking to procure the advanced Russian system:

With respect to the S-400, we’re urging all of our allies and partners, India included, to forgo transactions with Russia that risk triggering the CAATSA sanctions,” an official said during a background briefing Friday.

The “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” is the 2017 law allowing the White House to impose sanctions on countries buying Russian weapons.

Russian S-400 system file photo

This is a time we will be encouraging India to look at alternatives,” the US official added. However, it appears a whole litany of countries over the past year have shown increasing interest in pursuing the S-400.

Last year the military analysis magazine Military Watch put together the following list of US allies, NATO members, as well as non-aligned states lately showing “considerable interest” in the S-400. They include:

  • Iraq
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Morocco
  • Egypt
  • Turkey
  • India
  • Vietnam
  • South Korea

And then there’s Russia defense clients China, Belarus, Algeria, and Iran as well. Turkey has remained unmoved even amid an unprecedented rift with Washington and talk of sanctions and even threats of Ankara’s own counter-sanctions.

India’s English-language daily The Economic Times indicated this week that the Indian government’s course will remain unwavering:

The Ministry of External Affairs had earlier made it clear that India had no plans to scrap its S-400 deal with Russia despite the US posturing. The Indian government is not comfortable with Donald Trump administration repeatedly trying to dissuade India from purchasing the S-400 system.

Though during Pompeo’s visit to New Delhi next week economic and job matters are expected to top the list  especially reassurances that Washington has no plans to impose a cap on issuing the highly sought after H-1B visas used widely by Indian IT professionals — the S-400 deal with Russia will be a tense lingering issue, likely to be brought up by Pompeo.

India is categorized as having “Strategic Trade Authorization Tier-1 status” in Washington, yet not even Turkey’s full NATO membership status has prevented it from coming under the White House’s wrath over the past year, further resulting in blocked F-35 stealth fighter purchases.

via zerohedge


  1. The United States needs to remain vigilant and cautious as to whom we sell military hardware and software for defensive purposes, such as F-35 fighter jets and missile defense systems ; including in our considerations which nations are best probabilities as our continuing allies. While we need and earnestly desire strong allies in many places around the world ; it is indeed a walk on a tightrope to sound out these nations with regard to what may develop within their political aspirations. India’s decision to buy the Russian S-400 system will further their increasing ties to Russia. In the mean time, our continuing to educate Indian citizens in our nation’s colleges and universities grants them much easier access to information regarding our military plans and methods , and especially to the developing technologies which we both are and shall be using in the near approaching years. Even today, there are Iranian nationals being educated in American schools, working afterward in American companies, and later returning to Iran, where that information has been too often turned against our nation !!! The Chinese have sent MANY students to America over the years and employed this tactic, in addition to the tactic of grasping examples of American technology and reverse-engineering it to gain knowledge of both what we can do and how to do it. And that happens across the entire spectrum of devices and their controls, both militarily and in ordinary business. So, we Americans need to realize that President Trump and his team have their hands full with this immensely difficult and challenging task to make best informed decisions and implementations of policies and actions to defend America from our many, many enemies ; some of whom are already walking among us, right her !!!


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