October 15, 2018

A few thoughts

1. Fundamental weaknesses in the conceptualisation of China’s external relations, especially President Xi Jinping’s Belt & Road Initiative, suggest that growth of Chinese maritime and sea power in our region will fluctuate over time.

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn on Medium.

2. The trajectory of Chinese sea power is moving from securing dominance along its shores and where it has maritime territorial disputes to trans-oceanic power projection. However, given the weakness of China’s international model, a modern navy is assuming post-modernist roles with a flawed blueprint.

3. The Ledger of Power is subject to double-entry book-keeping

4. India’s Response

  1. Every great power tries to dazzle the audience — Chengiz Khan’s hordes deliberately created an image of being mass murderers to get his target cities to submit without too much violence. We should not be dazzled. Nor should we be complacent.
  2. We must project power East of Singapore, for many reasons: to show to the region’s people that there are options; and to have the capacity to manage China’s power in our own neighbourhood
  3. Cooperation with the US, Japan, Australia, Vietnam and Indonesia is necessary; Quad is good idea; but always keep in mind we’re the only country that shares a long land boundary with China.
  4. Our goal is not confrontation or enmity with China, but a stable order that allows trade, economy, culture and people to flourish.
  5. Ultimately, the answer to OBOR is MBMR. The Indian model is one of openness and pluralism. We shouldn’t lose sight of this. In the years to come, a lot of countries will find it more attractive.

If you would like to share or comment on this, please discuss it on my GitHub Previous
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Managing the China factor in India’s foreign policy

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