The Covid-19 pandemic has sharpened the divisions within and among countries. Nationalism continues to stir India, with the re-election of Narendra Modi in 2019, and in the US, despite the defeat of Donald Trump in 2020. The pandemic and the unsettling expansionism of China are reasons for heightened bilateral cooperation between the world's oldest and largest democracies, but they are increasingly protectionist and volatile. India and the US are trying hard to figure out their respective roles in the emerging world and their biliteral ties, as fears of a new Cold War, or even a military confrontation loom large. Both democracies are also grappling with contesting visions of their nationhood. Renewed debates over national security, borders, international trade, economic order, immigration, citizenship, state-society relations, the place of minorities, and institutional trust in both countries are noisy and fractious. In India, Narendra Modi's Hindutva Strategic Doctrine is reshaping India and advancing a new framework for its ties with the world; in the US, a significant portion of Trump's 'America First' nationalism has been embraced by his successor Joe Biden, demonstrating the salience of nationalism. Strategic commentaries tend to treat international relations in isolation from domestic politics. In a first, Open Embrace explores the domestic motivations of the strategic policies of India and the US. This new, wholly revised edition accounts for the post-pandemic shift in global politics and ongoing changes in the US politics around the defeat of Trump by Biden.
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