Manipal, India — Thanks largely to India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, who shared with his leftwing British friends a dislike of the Yanks, the geopolitically senseless alienation between the United States and India continued for five decades after India's independence in 1947.
What seems finally to have convinced the British to leave India was the seepage of loyalty from the Indian component of the armed forces. More than 2 million Indians saw action on the Allied side during World War II. Yet during the war, their loyalty to the Crown was tested by the discriminatory treatment meted out to Indians in the services. British personnel dominated the higher reaches of the military and were given perquisites and privileges far beyond those enjoyed by Indians.
Several thousands of soldiers joined the pro-Axis Indian National Army during the war. Within the ranks of those who remained on the Allied side, there was visible sympathy for those Indian officers and men who switched sides and refused to fight for the British monarchy that denied them the privileges enjoyed by soldiers from the Australian, New Zealand, U.S. and Canadian complements. The possibility of widespread revolts within the armed forces concentrated minds in London and speeded up the withdrawal from India.