Friday, August 19, 2022

Bhaiyon Aur Bahno, we are already into a war!

The Prime Minister will address the nation at 4 p.m. Tuesday. It may not be a declaration of war with China. But it certainly is going to be an open declaration of intent. The intent to fight tooth and nail for every inch of India’s land.

For the naysayers and usual India detractors, it does not matter how India decides to respond, the Chinese policymakers have already factored in a short-term war with India, and may be other neighbouring countries, to achieve their country’s ends.

About 20 days back a retired Air Force major general and military theorist of China Qiao Liang had written – though the chances of a war are low, China needs to be more prepared.

His words were: “ We should not overestimate India’s response, but we must also not let our guard down.”

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And he further writes: “If we must fight a war, we must strike quickly and contain the scale in a small and mid-sized war aimed at causing pain to our opponent and hence gaining respect via small wars.”

Chinese military policemakers and advisors have already advised Beijing to be ready for taking it further on the escalation ladder.

China’s perception has always been that India, for its own reasons, will not like to escalate the tussle, whatever be the transgressions.

However, this time things look different. The Indian forces are not willing to make any compromises on territory. And they know they do not compare very badly as far as military deployment and agility on the ground is concerned.

The present political leadership too is far accommodating of their point of view than the earlier dispensations.

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It would be wrong to say that if India decides to escalate the tussle a little further that would amount to a declaration of war. The fact is we are already into a multi-pronged war. These are not times of long-drawn and formally declared wars. These are times of calibrated and low-scale multi-pronged attacks on interests of enemy countries. China has been doing this against India in cahoots with Pakistan for several decades now.

It is only now that India has decided to resist. The man on the streets in India too is not in a mood to let China continue to transgress every three months and continue with hurting Indian interests even while keeping business as usual elsewhere.

China has already been showing its intent in bits and pieces for quite some time. What is evident is it continues with its policy to use the strengths of Indian democracy and dissenting voices to its advantage. In India, or for that matter, any democracy, there are thousand voices against everything that the government does or does not do. However, China has been clever to use such differing opinion to its own advantage

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Global Times, a CCP mouthpiece, has recently rued that rational pro-China voices are being stifled and silenced in India.

It seems Chinese observers do not watch our TV channels. They would find dozens of speakers and interlocutors who defend their interests and points of view better than the Chinese themselves.

However, that is an inherent strength of our democracy. This is how all democracies are supposed to function.

The PM has the backing of the people. It has the reassurance of its forces. And he has the support of the opposition too, to the extent it is expected in any vibrant democracy, as shown by Mayawati’s statements made yesterday, or for that matter Sharad Pawar’s statements made earlier.

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