The hawkishness which informs the current chorus, “India of 2021 is not the India of 1962”, ignores the accompanying truth: China of 2021 is not the China of 1962. It is challenging the United States.
Successive governments have ignored the Chinese strategy of incremental land grab along the LAC and thereby strengthening its positions by building infrastructure.
The standoff in Ladakh takes the mind back to External Affairs Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee’s 1979 visit to Beijing. That visit was conceived in a context. Until 1971, with the Cold War at full throttle, a tiresome parity existed between India and Pakistan.
After his return from Beijing, the National Security Adviser, Ajit Doval, must brief the diplomatic corps in New Delhi which so far has heard only from the Chinese here and in important capitals.
The purpose of this article however is to sensitize the readers about the larger objective of China in effecting a thrust from Chumbi Valley into Bay of Bengal through Indian territory and the land of Bangladesh in fanatical pursuance of ‘One Belt One Road’ initiative.
"If this book, half a century after the events, can even now make us pause long enough and look at ourselves in the mirror, it would have achieved its objective. At the end of the day it is not the Nehrus and the Menons and the Thapars and the Kauls and the Bogey Sens who are the losers – it is the country as a whole."
But for the 1962 India-China war, there would have been unbridled propensity to couch criminalization as political revolution. Even now, communists use all their leverages in India and abroad to dub their criminal and anti-national activities as ‘revolution’. The Indian romance about the ‘Red Flag’ at the cost of all other flags of productivity and progress though waning, is far from over.
It is intriguing that the ‘intrusion’ factor went up only when the economic component of the relationship between the two countries gained ascendancy. The change in global pattern of arms market has also contributed to the ‘intrusion’ factor. It may be mentioned that since 2011, India has replaced China as the largest arms importer. As the arms industry has been shifting its principal market focus on India so has been the corresponding increase in the ‘threat from China lobby’.
Strategic thinkers, who do not subscribe to Chinese lobby, have started drawing a picture that depicts China’s strategic efforts to “encircle” India from all possible sides. Besides building modern roads along Indo-Tibet borders, new Chinese Air Force formations have been stationed at such locations from where India can be easily targeted. Nuclear capable missile bases have been set up in Tibet region for the first time.
However, the media and the people need not panic. Indian policy makers are alive of the situation and they are using all possible measures to contain China on the unresolved border issue.