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Don’t ignore tsunami from South China Sea

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India should maintain equitable relationship with both US & China says a top Defense study...With Pakistan in a bellicose mood and not willing to show restraint how are we going to tame our enemy...I think we will get some idea in the UN address of our External Affairs Minister today....Ultimately being hawkish will show our true colors to our enemy!!

[h=1]Don’t ignore tsunami from South China Sea[/h] [h=3]Amidst the surge in India-Pakistan tensions and our existential angst over ‘jaw-for-tooth’ versus ‘strategic restraint’, it shouldn’t be that life in South Block doesn’t become Pakistan-centric. What the notable indifference on the part of the international community to both Pakistan’s tirade on Kashmir against India and India’s narrative on Pakistan-sponsored terrorism alike, is that time and tide doesn’t wait for us. That, quintessentially, is also what the Russian-Pakistani military exercises signify.[/h] [h=3]Russia cannot afford to lose the lucrative arms exports to India. On the other hand, Moscow needs to anticipate the cold blasts of New Cold War likely blowing from ever-new directions. Great powers are all like that: Time past mixes with time present and time future.[/h] [h=3]Meanwhile, for India a very fluid situation arises in the Asia-Pacific as well where the US’ rebalance strategy is floundering and a major course correction is called for as regards the assumptions that lay behind the shift in India’s regional policies through the two-year period since the visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Ahmedabad and Delhi.[/h] [h=3]Prime Minister Narendra Modi probably senses this need. In his Maan Ki Baat, PM gently revisited an idea that he’d felt passionate about at one time while making the difficult journey from Gujarat to Raisina Hill – ‘Asian Century’ – which, alas, the Delhi establishment didn’t approve.[/h] [h=3]The plain truth is that the US is not seeing India as ‘counterweight’ to China. Nor is Washington obliged to make India a great power to rival China. The facile assumptions that there will be strategic space for India to exploit in an emergent US-China confrontation – similar to what China would have had in the cold war era confrontation between the West and the former Soviet Union – has always been poppycock.[/h] [h=3]The Indian media completely missed the big story last week that China Bank’s branch in New York has been designated as the clearing house for renminbi. The momentous significance of this development is apparent from the fact that Chinese Premier Li Keqiang personally announced this while in New York during a gala banquet in his honor by the Economic Club of New York on September 22 – which itself followed a meeting between Li and US President Barack Obama in New York, which was indeed Obama’s second meeting with a Chinese leader within the month. (White House)[/h] [h=3]Read the transcript of Li’s banquet speech and the Q&A to comprehend the US-China dalliance in all its splendour and complexity. (MFA)[/h] [h=3]Obama understands perfectly well that China is not attempting to overturn the international order but is willing to play its due role in it as an emerging superpower. On China’s part, too, the move to create another profound link in the interdependency comes at a juncture when yuan is being formally designated as a world currency by the IMF in another 10 days flat. And for both the US and China, the bonding is a signal that they are moving on now that the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, the flagship of the US’ rebalance in Asia, is capsizing. (In reality, the ship is sinking right in the shipyard even before it sets sail.)[/h] [h=3]The Southeast Asian countries are making their own conclusions. The Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc recently paid a 6-day visit China, which from all accounts holds the potential to enhance the mutual trust in the relations between the two countries. At any rate, Hanoi since announced that it is deferring the proposed ratification of the TTP by the parliament.[/h] [h=3]But nothing can match the steady dissipation of the US-Philippine axis over the South China Sea issue. The tectonic plates in the geopolitics have begun moving following the report that Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will visit China next month. (ABS-CNS News)[/h] [h=3]Beijing, of course, is delighted. (Global Times) The excerpts of the remarks by the Foreign Ministry spokesman on Saturday are worth reproducing for the benefit of our pundits who live in fantasy land:[/h]
  • [h=3]Q: According to the Philippine side, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is likely to visit China in mid-October. Is this true? Will there be a leaders’ meeting during his visit? Since China and the Philippines have huge differences on the South China Sea issue, what significance will a leaders’ meeting bear on China if there is one?[/h]
  • [h=3]A: China has expressed welcome to President Duterte on many occasions, and hopes that he can make his visit to China at an early date. The two sides are in close communication on this.[/h]
  • [h=3]Q: The People’s Liberation Army has expressed intentions to carry out regular flights over the South China Sea. What is your comment?[/h]
  • [h=3]A: You may ask the Defense Ministry for more specifics.[/h]
  • [h=3]Follow-up: China has invited the Philippines to resolve disputes through bilateral dialogue. In the meantime, the Chinese army plans to carry out exercises in the South China Sea. Do you take these two actions as complementary or contradictory?[/h]
  • [h=3]A: It is indisputable for China to carry out exercises in our own territorial seas or waters permitted by international law. It is our inherent right to conduct exercises if they take place in China’s own waters. Regarding military exercises, you can check historical records and find that China is definitely not the top 1 country in terms of the number of exercises it has carried out.[/h]
  • [h=3]You asked whether China’s military exercises are contradictory to China’s policy, I can tell you that there is no contradiction between the two. As we have repeatedly said on this podium, we propose to properly handle the South China Sea issue through a dual-track approach with ASEAN countries, which is also a consensus reached between China and countries surrounding the South China Sea. We also hope that all non-regional countries can respect this consensus reached between China and ASEAN countries.[/h]
  • [h=3]Q: According to Japanese media reports, the Chinese ambassador to the Philippines once suggested that President Duterte visit China before going to Japan. Please confirm.[/h]
  • [h=3]A: I have also noticed this. I want to tell you that the Philippines is a sovereign state, and will decide on the diplomatic agenda based on its own judgment. It is only natural that high-level exchanges between two countries be agreed upon through consultation. It is a diplomatic convention to do so.[/h]
[h=3]The Philippine-China cogitation makes serious case study for our policymakers. Evidently, China has not blinked.[/h] [h=3]Duterte understands that the US is pursuing self-interests by firing from Philippino shoulders with a view to remain embedded in the region and to create a platform to push back at rising China. Duterte also senses that China can be the driver of growth for his country’s economy and development agenda happens to his top priority, being an ambitious politician.[/h] [h=3]A consensus is in the making between Beijing and Manila to put their intractable territorial dispute on the backburner and concentrate on mutually beneficial trade and economic cooperation. Neither side sees the point in military confrontation.[/h] [h=3]Since Manila is the lynchpin of the US’ pivot to Asia, the regional politics is radically transforming. Delhi should draw appropriate conclusions. PM should let his natural instincts as a politician prevail ultimately. Foreign policy is ultimately an extension of the national policies. A perestroika in India-China relations is the imperative need to fight a 1000-year war with Pakistan — and to win the war on our terms without having to fight one. PM’s meeting with Xi on Goa very shortly can make a historic difference.[/h]
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