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according to the following link:

The Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, headed by Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Dean Thompson, deals with U.S. foreign policy and U.S. relations with the countries of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Through diplomacy, advocacy, assistance, and learning from the past we advance the interests of the American people, their safety, and economic prosperity. We execute our mission by cultivating a diverse, inclusive, and fair working environment that supports and empowers “our people,” from all backgrounds, identities, and thought.

On the other hand, according to the following link:

  • SCA Front Office – The office of the Assistant Secretary and other principals in the bureau
  • Office of India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Maldives Affairs – Informs policy and coordinates with U.S. Missions in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and the Maldives
  • Office of Pakistan Affairs – Oversees Pakistan–United States relations, and liaises with the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan
  • Office of Central Asian Affairs – Informs policy and coordinates with U.S. Missions in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan
  • Office of Security and Transnational Affairs
  • Office of Press and Public Diplomacy – Coordinates public outreach and digital engagement, and prepares press guidance for the Department Spokesperson in the Bureau of Public Affairs
  • Office of Afghanistan Affairs – Oversees Afghanistan–United States relations, and liaises with the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan

I have an impression that the same office looks after India and 5 other countries, and that office considers India as the leader of those 5 countries.

I have this impression because: (1) the same office looks after 6 countries, (2) India is way bigger both in population, economy, and military, (3) India has a long history of intervening in domestic affairs of those countries, and we never saw any negative statement from the USA in those cases.

Is my impression correct?

If that is so, has the USA left India free in case of what India does to those 5 countries? In other words, does the US policy towards those 5 smaller countries in South Asia depend on the final say of India?

Note: Be kind enough to supply appropriate citations and references to support your argument.

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    What exactly in those quotes leads you to believe that the position of India might be in any way superior to that of Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan or Maldives? Just because it's the first in the list? – Philipp May 31 at 20:44
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Neither conclusion can be drawn.

  • The Office of Western European Affairs if the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs coordinates policy regarding Andorra, Belgium, France, Germany, the Holy See, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, Portugal, San Marino, Spain and the United Kingdom, according to Wikipedia.
  • The Office of Central European Affairs coordinates Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Liechtenstein, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Switzerland.

It would be foolish to think that Germany has control over Belgium but not over Austria, just because of that grouping of the departments.

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I have an impression that the same office looks after India and 5 other countries, and that office considers India as the leader of those 5 countries.

I have this impression because: (1) the same office looks after 6 countries, (2) India is way bigger both in population, economy, and military, (3) India has a long history of intervening in domestic affairs of those countries, and we never saw any negative statement from the USA in those cases.

Is my impression correct?

If that is so, has the USA left India free in case of what India does to those 5 countries? In other words, does the US policy towards those 5 smaller countries in South Asia depend on the final say of India?

Your impression is exaggerated.

To state the obvious, the USA certainly has no legal or treaty obligation to do so. Each of these countries has its own U.S. ambassador and the region does not have many multilateral treaties involving the U.S. Like diplomats in any country, the U.S. considers what every country in a region that it has diplomatic relations with has to say. But the predominant character of U.S.-India relations since India's independence as been one of ambivalent indifference and apathy.

U.S. diplomatic relations with India, while not hostile, are not particularly warm either. No U.S. President visited the country from 1978 until the year 2000. India does not receive significant military or economic aid, relative to the scale of its economy and population, from the United States. The U.S. imposed sanctions related to India's nuclear program on its from 1998 to 2001.

Relations between India and the U.S. warmed from 2005 until a low point in 2013, but stumbled in 2014 when the U.S. ambassador to India resigned in connection with poor relations triggered by the arrest of an Indian diplomat in the U.S.

This turned out to be a bump in the road, but trade relations with India soured during the Trump Administration. The Trump administration terminated India’s preferential trade status, part of a program dating back to the 1970s that allows products from developing countries to enter the U.S. market duty free and India retaliated a few weeks later by imposing tariffs on twenty-eight U.S. products in response to U.S. duties on steel and aluminum imposed in 2018.

The U.S. has normal diplomatic relations, which are likewise on and off, with the other South Asian nations of Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, the Maldives, Pakistan, and more strained relations with India's neighbor Myanmar.

The U.S. cooperated with the Pakistani military in connection with its fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan and the assassination of Osama bin Laden for the 9-11 attacks, an action that greatly displeased India because the Pakistani military actively engaged in border hostilities with India and sponsors insurgents in territory that India claims (e.g. Kashmir), despite the fact that Pakistani had a regime that adhered less faithfully to democratic ideals and human rights goals that the U.S. once fervently advanced in support of its "soft power" in the world.

President Trump in his most recent visit to India did not criticize immigration measures perceived by many in India as discriminating against Muslims, something which India's Muslim neighbors in Bangladesh and Pakistan fiercely opposed in diplomatic channels. But this reflected Trump's general antipathy (at least in public statements that were targeted at his voter base) towards Muslims generally, expressed quite directly on the campaign trail in his first Presidential race, rather than any particular deference to India's leadership role in the region.

The U.S. has likewise support India's condemnation of Myanmar's recently human rights abuses towards its Muslim minority population and its authoritarian shift in governance following a military coup, which has created a refugee crisis in India and Bangladesh. But this too doesn't show deference to India's leadership so much as it does global condemnation of these actions of Myanmar's leaders and military, which the U.S. would have taken in any case.

The U.S. doesn't have particularly notable policies towards Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and the Maldives, one way or the other, and primarily simply seeks to maintain normal diplomatic relations with this countries, not because of direction from India so much as because these nations have very little impact or interchanged with the U.S. for good or for ill. Generations of U.S. leaders have largely left these countries alone.

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  • How do you explain this: (3) India has a long history of intervening in domestic affairs of those countries, and we never saw any negative statement from the USA in those cases. ? – user366312 Jun 1 at 22:21
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    @user366312 First, I very much doubt that it is a true statement factually (the U.S. has surely made negative comments in the past). Second, the U.S. doesn't have strong opinions about what happens in South Asia for the most part. The U.S. doesn't have strong historical colonial, military, economic or immigration ties to the region until very recently. If it follows the lead of any country in the region, it is the U.K., which does have such ties and is a close ally of the U.S. most of the time. – ohwilleke Jun 1 at 22:25
  • How about this? – user366312 Jun 2 at 14:09
  • The aim of my inquiry was to seek the truth. But, here, as usual, you (like other people on politics.SE) are evading the truth. Coz, this exposes the US policy in South Asia, which is heavily biased in favor of India. – user366312 Jun 2 at 14:10

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