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Exclusive: US-India Move to Establish Joint Military Base in Trincomalee?

Victoria Nuland's efforts to reshape South Asian affairs in favour of the United States could have negative consequences.

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US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, Victoria Nuland and Subrahmanyam, Minister of External Affairs of the Government of India in New Delhi [Photo Credit: Twitter]

by Our Diplomatic Affairs Editor

Victoria Nuland, the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs of the United States, has made a second visit to Sri Lanka within a few months. Prior to her visit, she met with key officials in the Indian government, including Minister of External Affairs Dr. S. Jaishankar, to discuss a strategic plan for the region.

“During her visit Nuland suggested to the Sri Lankan government in the strongest possible terms to establish a US-Indian joint military base in Trincomalee, which will serve as a critical component in protecting US and Asia-Pacific interests and countering Chinese development activities in the region,” informed sources reaffirmed.

According to a source, “the officials also discussed implementing the 13th amendment as quickly as possible, as it will be a catalyst for achieving the objectives of the strategic plan. The 13th amendment aims to devolve power to the provincial councils in Sri Lanka while diluting the centre.”

The establishment of the military base is expected to “enhance security and stability in the region, and promote greater cooperation between the United States, India, and Sri Lanka,” a top diplomatic source says under the conditions of anonymity.

We attempted to reach out to a Colombo government official for an official statement, but no one was willing to provide one in an official capacity.

Who is this Nuland?

Victoria Nuland, a career diplomat and former US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, played a significant role in the United States’ policy towards Ukraine in the early 2010s. Nuland’s “war game” in Ukraine, and how it was exposed, provides a compelling case study on the intersection of foreign policy and geopolitical gamesmanship.

In 2014, the world watched as Ukraine erupted in conflict, with Russia annexing Crimea and pro-Russian separatists seizing control of parts of Eastern Ukraine. However, the origins of the crisis go back several years. In 2013, the Ukrainian government under President Yanukovych was poised to sign an association agreement with the European Union, signaling a shift towards closer ties with the West. This decision was vehemently opposed by Russia, which saw Ukraine as part of its sphere of influence.

It was during this time that Nuland became heavily involved in US policy towards Ukraine. Leaked audio recordings in early 2014 revealed that Nuland had discussed who should form Ukraine’s next government with the US Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt. In the conversation, she expressed her preference for Arseniy Yatsenyuk, a pro-Western politician who eventually became Prime Minister following Yanukovych’s ouster.

The leaked recordings caused a significant stir, with some commentators accusing the US of meddling in Ukraine’s affairs and undermining its sovereignty. Nuland defended her actions, stating that the US was simply supporting a democratic, pro-European movement in Ukraine.

However, Nuland’s actions did not stop there. She also supported the anti-government protests that erupted in Ukraine in late 2013 and early 2014, providing various forms of assistance to the demonstrators. This assistance reportedly included training, resources, and funding for civil society groups.

US Military bases surrounding China [ Source: Base Nation]

Nuland as a Warmonger in Ukraine

Nuland’s involvement in Ukraine became emblematic of the wider geopolitical struggle between Russia and the West. Her support for the protesters was seen as evidence of the US’s desire to encroach on Russia’s sphere of influence, while her advocacy for Yatsenyuk’s appointment was seen as evidence of the US’s intention to shape Ukraine’s political future.

Ultimately, the Ukrainian crisis resulted in significant geopolitical fallout. The conflict in Eastern Ukraine has claimed thousands of lives and strained relations between Russia and the West to breaking point. The role that Nuland played in the crisis, and the exposure of her actions, provides a unique insight into the complex, often hidden world of foreign policy and geopolitical gamesmanship.

Victoria Nuland’s “war game” in Ukraine and how it was exposed serves as an important case study in foreign policy and geopolitical strategy. The leaked recordings of her conversations with the US Ambassador to Ukraine revealed the extent of US involvement in Ukraine and sparked accusations of meddling. The Ukrainian crisis remains a key flashpoint in international relations, and Nuland’s role in it highlights the complexity and delicacy of geopolitical manoeuvring.

According to a top diplomatic source, Victoria Nuland’s efforts to reshape South Asian affairs in favour of the United States could have negative consequences. The source expressed concern that her actions may potentially disrupt the longstanding state of peace in the region, which Sri Lanka has worked to maintain.

Sri Lanka Guardian

The Sri Lanka Guardian is an online web portal founded in August 2007 by a group of concerned Sri Lankan citizens including journalists, activists, academics and retired civil servants. We are independent and non-profit. Email: editor@slguardian.org

2 Comments

  1. What you portray in this article as “meddling in Ukraine” is completely unjustified without presenting the other side of the argument. What you fail to point out is the meddling of Russia in Ukraine and other former USSR satellite countries. It is for this reason alone that US got involved in Ukraine — as a defense against the spread of authoritarianism, which Sri Lanka has a lot of experience in during the Rajapakse regime (where is Lasantha Wickrematunge today?). One-sided articles such as these don’t serve the public — it simply supports the authoritarians of the world and gives credence to non-democratic approaches to governance. Is that what Sri Lanka also wants? Would we do well under an authoritarianism? Are Russia and China the “friends” we want? Do we ever learn?

    The US has its flaws — big ones too, but we need to write articles that are balanced, or else the public will get a warped idea of the world.

    Quite sad to see a tilted article.. journalists should provide a balanced view of the world. Try to do better next time.

  2. Your analysis spot on. Different people have different temperaments and people like USAs Nulan and Indias Jaishankar have irresponsible hegemonic self-centred ideologies to gain for themselves at any cost to others.
    To me China abd Russia are better than these two states and nit really hegemonic except for their own righteous historically accepted territories for their own defence in depth.

    This is not needed. We have to remain non-aligned friendly with all without taking sides. If USA wants a base let them di it in Singapore or Malaysia. Not here. Don’t let them topple the Apple Cart like they did in Ukraine, and Mid East, Korea, Cuba, Afghanistan etc. Don’t make the same mistakes.

    India had been hegemonic poking their nose into our affairs abd trying to change the destiny of our country. It was never our friend though kissing our hand though planning to dismember us.

    Why so we need to get aligned fot our defence but foster goodwill with all and be non-aligned? That way we can get benefits from all friends without making enemies. We should not bow down to these pressures.

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