Case 359 - The Road Not Taken: How the Iran-India Pipeline Fell Victim to New Delhi's Grand Strategy Shift
This case study explores the twists and turns in India’s relations with Iran between 2005 and 2012. It is designed to illustrate the material and ideational factors that drove a rising middle power like India to make policy choices with a backdrop of a major shift in its grand strategy. A secondary focus is how the U.S. deployed diplomacy to help achieve largely favorable outcomes in a key region of the world. Negotiations for the India-Pakistan-Iran (IPI) pipeline and a proposed Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) deal form the fulcrum for process-tracing the narrative. The simultaneous narrative of the India-U.S. negotiations on the nuclear deal (that provides a major intervening variable) are also temporally overlaid and traced at relevant points. When taken together, these narratives provide a composite and more complete picture of choices and decisions that Indian diplomats faced.