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India stands to face retribution

China Daily | Updated: 2017-08-28 07:19

India stands to face retribution

China's Ministry of Commerce said on Wednesday that India should refrain from abusing trade remedy measures, which would disrupt economic cooperation and trade relations between the two countries.[Photo/mofcom.gov.cn]

India has started building a road near Bangong Lake in Ladakh, which, according to Indian media, will facilitate the movement of Indian troops. This suggests India might be preparing for a war with China, or pretending to go to war in the hope of forcing China into making concessions.

Indian troops trespassed into China's territory in the Donglang area more than two months ago to stop Chinese troops from building a road in its own territory, claiming the road would pose a threat to India's security. Why doesn't the Indian government apply the same logic to understand that by building a road near the disputed border area with China, India will pose a threat to its neighbor's national security?

Whether India has the economic and military wherewithal to become a hegemon is still uncertain, but it indeed is behaving like one considering its decision to send its troops into Chinese territory by assuming it is Bhutan's protector and its insistence of keeping them there leading to the more than two-month-long standoff with Chinese troops.

India claims to be acting on behalf of Bhutan, but many in Bhutan feel India's protective embrace has become suffocating, according to a report in The New York Times. Pema Gyamtsho, a leader of the opposition party in Bhutan's National Assembly, was quoted as saying that in the case of a war between India and China, Bhutan would become the meat in the sandwich.

Instead of safeguarding Bhutan's national security, India is actually bullying the tiny country, as Bhutan doesn't seem to have sought India's help. As such, India is taking advantage of Bhutan, in order to assert itself as a regional superpower.

And in doing so, India is punching above its weight, perhaps because it believes China will do whatever it can to avoid a military conflict with India. India's decision-makers may be complacent in the belief that they have made the right decision given China's tolerance and repeated warnings over the past more than two months.

But if India continues to think so, it cannot escape the retribution it deserves for what it has done. It's only a matter of time.

 

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