China · Foreign Policy · Geopolitics · Indo-Pacific · International Relations · South Asia · Sri Lanka · States Leaders · US Foreign Policy

U.S. relations with Sri Lanka:

A Case of Impulsiveness, Missed Opportunities and Strategic Competition

You can now read my latest book chapter “U.S. relations with Sri Lanka: A Case of Impulsiveness, Missed Opportunities and Strategic Competition” that was published in The Routledge Handbook of US Foreign Policy in the Indo-Pacific (2022).

This chapter examines United States’ relations with Sri Lanka over the last 70 years through the following four prisms: the Cold War era, the post-Cold War period, the War on Terrorism and lastly, the rise of China. Even though Sri Lanka was assigned a peripheral role in the US South Asia policy in the twentieth century, this approach changed in the early twenty-first century as the latter is frequently engaging with the former given its efforts to reassert itself in the Indo-Pacific region. This chapter asks why the United States fostered relations with Sri Lanka and to what extent that bilateral relationship has enabled it to achieve its broader interests in the Indo-Pacific. The chapter contends that the United States considers Sri Lanka an important partner in the Indian Ocean region and has understood the importance of engaging with it in the context of the increasing power rivalry in the Indian Ocean region, and the Chinese engagement with littoral states of the Indian Ocean. However, contours of that engagement remain hasty and haphazard, and could be given more detailed attention.

You can read limited sections of the chapter here or read the entire chapter here.

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