22 February
Type of event: 
The New Military Alliance Between India and Israel
Organizing office: 
IPS Washington
Thursday, February 22, 2024 - 18:00 - 19:15
Eastern Date:: 
Thursday, February 22, 2024 - 11:00 - 12:15
via Zoom
Event Theme: 
About the event: 

*AT 11am ET / 4pm UK / 6pm Palestine*

India’s pursuit of a closer tie-up with Israel in the 1990s came as a reconfiguration of the Israeli arms industry took place, including a move toward the privatization of the weapons industry. The privatization of security meant the management of endless conflict and, therefore, an insatiable desire for weaponry. And as Israel, a long-time and “successful” occupier in Palestine, became the gold standard in tried and tested weapons as well as in techniques of control and surveillance, India looked on with intrigue. This talk will look at how India and Israel built up a military-industrial complex, so much so that India would emerge under Modi as the world’s biggest buyer of Israeli weapons.

This is the fifth event of the Israel-India lecture series.

About the speakers: 

Azad Essa is an award-winning journalist and author based in New York. He is currently a senior reporter for Middle East Eye covering American foreign policy, Islamophobia and race in the U.S. He is the author of The Moslems are Coming and Zuma's Bastard and has written for Al Jazeera, The Washington Post, Foreign Policy and the Guardian.

Virinder Singh Kalra's academic work examines the multiple ways in which culture is used as the basis of peoples' resistance to hegemony. In South Asia the boundaries between India and Pakistan are weakended through the practices of musicians and writers, which is central to his book Sacred and Secular Musics (Bloomsbury Press). In this text, he engages a postcolonial analysis with the field of ethnomusicology, forwarding the role of the native musician as the interpreter and conveyor of religious texts. This inverts the normative accounts of musicians in South Asia which place them at the bottom of the social hierarchy and also of religious hierarchy in which texts are given a superordinate role. The wide range of his academic work is underpinned by an account of processes of resistance through the gambit of cultural and political organising, demonstrated most recently in the co-authored book Beyond Religion in India and Pakistan (Bloomsbury, 2019), which highlights the porous boundaries of shrine worship compared to the rigid boundaries of religious identity

Video of the event: 

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