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Why are India and Israel cozying up? Is jealous raising its head? 

Israeli Prime Minister had received a warm welcome and the famous bear hug from Narendra Modi when he visited India.

‘A marriage made in Heaven’ that was India-Israel’s bond.

But does this relationship have its fair share of enemies?

The only nations who think that Israel and India are becoming “too friendly” are those that do not wish well to either India, Israel or both. They fear that this “Marriage made in Heaven” will strengthen both countries to their own detriment.

There is no doubt that the vast majority of both the Indian and Israeli populations are very much in favor of their mutual strategic partnership. Besides the practical benefits the friendship brings, a few of which I mention below, it has also struck a chord on the emotional level.

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Of the practical benefits, from Israel’s side:

It sees India as a friendly country for future diplomatic support, a rising military and economic power, a population whose majority tends to be friendly to Jews and Israel, a huge market for its numerous products and services, a safe and friendly place for its tourists to visit, a place with many smart scientists for collaboration and smart potential business partners, a country which is making great scientific and technological progress of its own.

Just as a famous example – Israel depends on a strong military for its safety. Substantial Indian defense purchases and collaboration helps both the Israeli economy in general and the economies of scale for its arms industries in particular.

For instance, Israel is a tiny country. It needs large, friendly markets and trade partners to grow its economy.

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From India’s side:

India sees Israel as an extremely smart, innovative and militarily strong (for its size) country who is naturally and practically inclined to support it when India has issues with for instance Pakistan.

India understands that as its population looks to greatly increase, it is facing immense environmental, economic and societal challenges.

For instance, it knows that the Asian continent is getting drier. How is it going to feed its vast and growing population if its agriculture fails and its environment degrades further? How is it going to continue raising millions out of poverty? How are its environment and resources going to cope with the footprint of a vastly swollen middle class? How is it going to become self-reliant for its defense needs? How is it going to be a regional power that can defend its interests against aggressive neighbors?

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For instance, as it tries to secure its border:  It looks in part to Israeli innovation for some answers. Israeli technology and expertise are already helping change parts of India and as far as PM Modi and many similarly minded Indians are concerned, that Israeli technology, expertise, and gung-ho enthusiasm to take on challenges, cannot come fast enough.

A nursery at the horticulture center of excellence in Karnal, Haryana. So far, 20 centers of excellence are functioning in different states under the Indo-Israeli Agriculture Project and five more will be operational by next month.

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