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Heading into the recent meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump, expectations were modest.The U.S.-India relationship, despite having become closer, has been burdened by mutual misgivings as of late. India, for its part, has been increasingly worried about the Trump administration's isolationist worldview and, in particular, its apparent retreat from Asia, where the U.S. has been a key guarantor of security for the last 70 years. India matters to America for a host of reasons.Such factors have given rise to rare bipartisan support for deepening U.S. ties with India since the early 1990s. Judging by Modi's recent visit, however, this may not be the case under Trump's administration, which appears keen to build on bilateral security cooperation as a key tenet of its Asia policy.The Trump administration seems to recognize that, at a time when rapid power shifts in Asia could affect regional stability, an increasingly confident India can help the U.S. in underwriting security. Modi and Trump are nationalist leaders, focused on manufacturing-led domestic employment growth.Despite ongoing challenges, the U.S.-India relationship under Trump and Modi has gotten off to a stronger-than-expected start.
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