The Chinese four-decade phenomenal achievement is posing an alarming challenge for the United States because it is seen as the rise of a rival.
The worried detractors known as “Blue Team” who in alliance with Western media and whose projections are based on home-made theories and wild speculations, have unleashed a propaganda campaign against China.
The avant-garde item of the campaign is that India is overtaking China in economic growth. The nature of this line of modus operandi demands a comparative study of China, India and in the background the US- as to decide how far the partisan view is tenable.
At this early stage in the discussion, it is pertinent to declare that four-tier criteria of the said comparison have not been designed by this writer. It has rather been borrowed from one of the detractors and well-known internet authority on Chinese progress, Timothy Beardson, who has recently written a book, entitled “Stumbling Giant” to disparage China.
The first salient feature of the criteria is ‘stability’ which means lack of fissiparous movements and absence of an external threat. The external threat to China is from the US who has been topsy-turvily vacillating for many years from engagement to containment policy towards China. There were times which were not easy. On the issue of border dispute, Tibet and Dalai Lama’s escape, Khurshchev disagreed with Mao. Then Taiwan was a bone of contention between China and the US. China was aloof and without heavy weight status in international politics, economic strength and military might, it still confronted both the superpowers of the US and of Soviet Union.
Frequently and recently, the US has again started testing Chinese wits by provocative acts like conducting military exercises along with Japan and Philippines in the Yellow Sea or careening warships within 12 nautical miles of China’s man-made island on Spratly reef in South East China Sea. In addition to penning contract with Australia, the US has signed a strategic partnership contract with India which is a move to stop Chinese opening up to the world.
Nevertheless, Chinese response is well-prepared, calculated and poised. It has already won the trade war and it is successfully handling the currency war. Not only does China’s growth of 6.5% this year, which president Xi Jinping calls, “new normal”, satisfactorily meets economic targets, but China has transferred nuclear warheads and weapons to Island of Hainan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Oman and Yemen for safe transit of export and import particularly oil from Saudi Arabia through Indian Ocean.
China has settled its border dispute with Russian Federation. It has greatly solved its oil problem as it is available from Russian Federation through a newly built pipeline with $400 billion. Both China and Russian Federation are now focussing on recent developments instead of rehashing the past. They seem to have learnt their lessons, and if they act in unison for expanding the scope of Shanghai Cooperation Organization to nuclear technology, their position will be greatly strengthened. There are other indicators discussed in previous articles published in the daily “The Nation” Lahore which show China and Russia supporting each other in national as well as international matters.
Astonishingly, China is the only country in the world where two politico-economic systems exist peacefully: one for People’s Republic of China and the other in Hong Kong and Macao. What better example there can be of stability and peaceful co-existence!
Quite opposite to China, none of the neighbouring countries are happy with India on account of its hegemonic policies. In the name of culture and civilization, India claims and asserts unlawful rights on the lands of other countries situated at periphery of India which includes China, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Indian occupied Kashmir, Tibet, Nepal, Assam, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and places and freedom movements within its boundary such as Nagaland, Hyderabad, and Khalistan.
In this way, India itself becomes the main agent of stoking instability in the region.
Bitterness existing already over territorial dispute turned into India-China rivalry which deteriorated and ended in Indian defeat in 1962 war. Then in 1991 Chinese nuclear and missile assistance to Pakistan resulted in fierce enmity between India and China. In 1998India conducted nuclear tests on account of which antagonism was aggravated making both sides to focus mainly on building Army, Air Force, Navy along with developing awar arsenal.
In 68 years of its life, India has fought five wars: four wars against Pakistan in 1948, 1965, 1971, 1999 and with China in 1962. Who can imagine stability and peace in a land where more than 300 separatist and insurgent movements are in action? Indian response has strictly been single-track military action drenched fully with human blood whether it is of Sikhs, Communists or minorities of Indira Gandhi’s or Narendra Modi’s times.
Thus, hatred and violence looms large in India. Mahatma Gandhi, the two prime ministers, Indira Gandhi and her son Rajiv Gandhi were assassinated by none other than Indians themselves. Around one million army and para-military forces have been stationed in Kashmir since 1947. The Indian forces are engaged in extermination of the Muslim majority in Kashmir. If India claims to be the largest democracy in the world, why does it then abstain from self-determination based plebiscite in Kashmir as proposed by the UN resolution?
Obviously, stability and democracy are two myths in India. This is further clear from handling of the present unrest. The government of Modi is using coercive and violent methods to silence the cries of the minorities. Today, the Muslim demand for independent state stands fully justified because freedom from the British would have meant permanent dominance of the Hindu majority over Muslim minority.
In fact, unrest has always been there in Indian society. Only it has come to surface as a result of Modi’s Caligulian policies towards minorities. Just imagine a young man was butchered in a village near Delhi for eating beef. Hundreds of houses of the minorities belonging to Muslims, Christians and lower caste Hindus (Dalits, the untouchables)were burnt along with innocent men, women and children. Pakistani singer Ghulam Ali was refused to hold a musical concert in India. Pakistani Cricket players were told to leave India. Even the chief of Pakistan Cricket Board who was officially invited by Indian authorities was treated in a highly discourteous manner. Before inauguration ceremony of Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri’s book “Neither a Hawk Nor a Dove” in India, the face of the Indian journalist who was organizing the function was blackened and insulted. Many Indian intellectuals including Arundhati Roy, many retired army officers and actors belonging to Bollywood returned their awards to show their annoyance and disapproval at repressive actions of the Indian Government towards Pakistan.
The impact of these shameful actions will affect India’s honour and influence in the world. After his visit to China, Narendra Modi commented on Twitter (16 September 2014) about China-India ties as “Millennium of Exceptional Synergy.” This is a blatant lie. The people of the world have come to know that the real persona of India is “red in tooth and claw.”
The fact of the matter is that Indian laws are biased, inadequate and ambiguous. Then, there is the problem of implementation as politicians and filthy rich in India are more powerful than judiciary. Above all, common man is so naïve that he remains unaware of judicial inadequacy as well as lack of respect for human rights.
The writer is an educationist and a senior analyst based in Lahore.