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Extract from the remarks made by the US President George W. Bush

The City Club of Cleveland, Ohio
March 20, 2006

I agreed with the Indian government that India ought to be encouraged to develop a nuclear power industry. And that's a controversial decision on my part because it basically flies in the face of old Cold War attitudes, as well as arms control thinking. Let me just share the logic with you. 

First of all, in that we live in a global economy, there is a demand for fossil fuels -- an increase in demand for fossil fuels in one part of the world affects the price of gasoline in our world. We're connected. Whether people like it or not, there is an interconnectiveness today that affects our economy. Somebody's decision overseas affects whether or not people are going to able to work here in America. So I think it makes sense for the United States, as we ourselves become less addicted to oil and fossil fuels, which I'm serious about, encourage others to do so as well. And one good way to do so, and to protect the environment at the same time, is to encourage the use of safe nuclear power. It's in our interests, our economic interests, that we work an agreement with India to encourage their expansion of civilian nuclear power. 

Secondly, unlike Iran, for example, India is willing to join the IAEA. They want to be a part of the global agreements around nuclear power. 

Thirdly, India has got a record of nonproliferation. They've had 30 years of not proliferating. 

Fourthly, India is a democracy and a transparent society. We can find out a lot about India because there's a free press, there is openness. People run for office and are held to account. There's committee hearings. (Laughter.) I mean, there's a -- it's an open process. 

I feel very comfortable recommending to the United States Congress that they ought to agree with the agreement that Prime Minister Singh and I have reached. It's important -- it's also an important relationship. For too long, America and India were not partners in peace, we didn't deal with each other because of the Cold War. 

And now's the time to set the Cold War behind us. It's over, folks. It no longer is, and let's think about, you know, the next 30 years. And so my hope is some day somebody will be asking a question, you know, "Aren't you glad old George W. thought about entering into a strategic relationship with India?" And I believe it's in our country's interest that we have such a relationship and at the same time maintain close relations with Pakistan, and it's possible to do so. And we are doing so.