Inheritance of Empire: Britain, India, and the Balance of Power in Asia, 1938-55

A. Martin Wainwright
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This book considers the forces that shaped India's postwar position as a major power. It examines the growth and development of India's defense infrastructure from the eve of the Second World War in 1938 through the transfer of power and partition in 1947 to the creation of the Baghdad Pact in 1955. The study shows how the British invested in the expansion of India's defense infrastructure during the Second World War in order to defend their imperial interests east of Suez. It also examines the effects of partition and de jure independence on India's access to this infrastructure. Finally, it analyzes the impact that India's possession of this infrastructure had on three developments of major importance to postwar geopolitics: India's leadership of newly independent former colonies, the decline of the British empire east of Suez, and the origins of the Cold War in Asia.