[Because India cannot tackle China's growing presence on its own,] you have now seen a broader switch in Indian strategy that has involved both developing its own capabilities and welcoming other external actors.
It's an open question how much this [arms purchases from U.S. rivals] will end up affecting partners like India, but also countries like Indonesia and Vietnam who have these legacy relationships with Russia and are not going to give them up any time soon. In fact, there's an argument to be made that for America's Indo-Pacific objectives, you actually want these countries to maintain and build up a certain amount of military capability, and in some cases the U.S. cannot offer that capability.
[Regarding the Quad initiative to supply doses of Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine to Southeast Asian nations.] It can be visible proof of concept for a grouping that has been dismissed by critics as . . . a meaningless talk shop.
[On a potential Quad initiative to increase COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing capability in India and coordinate on distribution across the Pacific region.] A vaccine initiative could show that, look, this is a positive contribution to the region. This isn’t just about containing China, this is a value add that will benefit a number of countries and show what pooled capabilities can do.
[Commenting on the significance of the many individual actions India has performed over the years that departs from its previous non-aligned policy to push back against China when viewed in combination.] If you don’t look at all these things, you miss the spider web that is being woven beneath.