The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily reflect those of BCNN1. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).
President Trump today received one of the most outstanding welcomes ever given by the Indian government to a foreign leader.
Tens of thousands of Indians lined up the 22km (13.7 mi) road between the Mahatma Gandhi Sabarmati Ashram and the Motera stadium, where over 125,000 people gathered to receive President Trump and the first lady. It was a spectacular welcome that President Trump said he would never forget.
President Trump was profuse in his praise of Prime Minister Modi, his accomplishments and what India has been able to achieve in 70 years as the largest democracy in the world.
As someone who has observed America’s relationship with India for decades, I’m convinced these are among the most remarkable days between the world’s most powerful democracy and its largest one. This is largely thanks to Trump and Modi’s friendship, which in many ways has the potential to make the world a better place should they focus on:
Making the world a safer place
Despite being thousands of miles apart, the U.S. and India share very similar challenges to their national security. For example, both face competition with a rising China, and both face the threat of terrorists and extremists who want to undermine the democratic principles of free speech, religious liberty and capitalism. Extremist groups such as ISIS have radicalized individuals in both the U.S. and India to commit attacks against innocent civilians.
The U.S. and India have a strong history of counter-terrorism cooperation, and Trump and Modi vowed together in Houston to continue to fight terrorism. Strengthening cooperation between intelligence agencies is benefiting both nations.
Both nations also are contending with the challenge of securing their borders — the U.S. in its southern border with Mexico and India with neighboring Pakistan, Bangladesh and other nations.
President Trump has made addressing America’s immigration crisis a priority in office, not only to prevent undocumented immigrants from coming in illegally but to fight drug and sex trafficking. He has gone to great lengths to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, even justifying funds from defense spending to fulfill what is also in the national security interests of the United States.
Modi’s government has implemented a series of ambitious policies to address its own immigration and security challenges. Admittedly, some of these decisions have been more popular than others and some are being worked through India’s judicial process.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Joseph D’Souza