The Policy of Non-Alignment

  • Willem Frederik van Eekelen


In the past fifteen years the primary concern of newly independent nations was the assertion of a national identity after their previous colonial existence and foreign policy became the main instrument for expressing their new dignity. The postwar international situation provided an opportunity to gain a position of influence which exceeded the realities of economic and military power. But diplomatic action was strongly conditioned by the domestic scene.1 International relations were spread as widely as possible since partiality towards any group of nations, and particularly towards the former colonial powers, would have carried the risk of losing control over the nationalist movement. As both camps in the cold war gradually accepted the existence of non-aligned nations and were prepared to aid them economically a neutralist position acquired considerable attraction for countries in need of substantial assistance.


Foreign Policy Foreign Affair Indian Leader Independent Nation Nationalist Movement 
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  1. 2.
    Basham, A. L., The Wonder that was India, Grove Press, New York, 1954, p. 123. The movement of Indian nationalism coincided with a Hindu reformation largely based on the Bhagavad Gita, the conversation between Arjuna and Krishna on the eve of battle. Although intended as a defence of the established order in which everyone should fulfil his class function to the best of his ability, its message of action, directed to ordinary people, lent itself to a revolutionary interpretation. Its conception of the ideal man stressed the person of equable mind acting without personal desire or attachment and directing his efforts towards the welfare of the world. The Gita also foresaw the inevitable decay of all institutions and the necessity of change to restore the harmony of life.Google Scholar
  2. 1.
    Tanya Zinkin, “Indian foreign policy,” World Politics VII (1955) 179; Nehru in U.S. Congress Oct. 13, 1949; Nehru’s speeches 1949–53, p. 121-125.Google Scholar
  3. 2.
    Rusett, A. de, “On understanding India’s foreign policy”; with reply by A. Appadorai. International Relations, I (1959) 229-261 and II (1960) 69–79.Google Scholar

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© Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 1964

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  • Willem Frederik van Eekelen

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