China warships dock in Burma, rattling rival naval power India

Discussion in 'China' started by youngindian, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. youngindian

    youngindian Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2009
    Messages:
    1,360
    Likes Received:
    71
    China and India have overlapping ambitions in the Indian Ocean. So as China flexes its naval reach, India is left debating how to assume leadership in the Indian Ocean.


    By Ben Arnoldy, Staff writer / August 30, 2010
    New Delhi

    Two Chinese warships docked at a Burmese port Sunday, highlighting China’s expanding naval presence near Asia’s other rising giant, India.Chinese news agency Xinhua described the friendly port call as a first-ever in Burma – also known as Myanmar – by Chinese warships. It comes amid heightened tensions between Beijing and New Delhi, including India's reported suspension of military exchanges with China.

    Though the two Asian heavyweights share a disputed border in the Himalayas, the Indian Ocean could become a more serious flashpoint for their overlapping ambitions. Beijing is developing ports around India to help secure Chinese maritime routes while India’s security establishment is debating how best to assume leadership in the Indian Ocean.

    “With this particular port of call I don’t think there is anything that needs to be done. Just watch very closely,” says P.K. Ghosh, a senior fellow at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi and a retired Navy officer. But China, he says, is sending a signal. “The underlying message is a strategic message: ‘Look, we are in the area and we can operate in the region.

    China's 'string of pearls'

    In recent years, China has expanded port facilities in countries that border India, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Burma. Indian strategists refer to the projects as a “string of pearls” encircling India in its strategic back yard.

    Dr. Ghosh points out that the ports are commercial structures, not designed to be naval bases. But, he adds, “if a push comes to a shove, they can definitely use it for a base.”

    The Indian Ocean will only grow in importance for both India and China as their interconnectivity with the global economy grows. The Indian Ocean is the Silk Road of the 21st century, moving Gulf oil and African minerals to the world’s two most populous nations.

    The securing of the sea lanes – once the province of Great Britain, then the US – could evolve cooperatively, rather than competitively, to include India and China. Indeed, both countries have participated in a global effort to protect ships from pirates off Somalia.

    But for India to realize its ambition to be able to project its Navy over a distance to secure economic access abroad, it will need access first to regional ports – some of which are now under Chinese expansion.

    “We saw that happen in Sri Lanka. When Delhi slept over Colombo’s invitation to build a new port at Hambantota, China stepped in,” said C. Raja Mohan, the strategic affairs editor of the Indian Express, at a talk given before a packed public audience in New Delhi last month.

    India and China: a complicated relationship

    Compounding the issue is the wariness in New Delhi about China. While the two Asian giants have found common cause over climate change and expansion of bilateral trade, diplomatic tit-for-tats dating back to the 1962 Chinese invasion continue to hamper better relations.The two countries failed to resolve their border disputes in the Himalayas earlier this decade, prompting India to beef up border infrastructure in the face of Chinese incursions.

    Recently, Beijing denied a visa to an Indian general who planned to join a military delegation to China – reportedly because he oversaw Army operations in Indian-controlled Kashmir. An Indian newspaper reported Saturday that India had responded by suspending military exchanges. When asked by the Associated Press, China said this was news to them while India refused to comment.

    Meanwhile, the Indian Express reported Saturday on Page 1 that the state-run People’s Daily posted in a discussion forum an article titled “How likely is China’s launch of a limited war against India?”

    While the Indian press plays up Chinese “provocations,” officials in Delhi tread lightly, taking care to avoid direct clashes with Beijing.
    India's next steps

    But among Indian naval experts, China’s moves have spurred along a debate over how India should assert itself in the Indian Ocean.

    During his talk in New Delhi last month, Dr. Mohan argued for a more assertive approach that includes basing agreements and naval assistance to “weaker states of the Indian Ocean littoral.”

    “No great power has built a blue-water navy capable of projecting force without physical access and political arrangements for ‘forward presence,’ ” said Mohan. “This would mean creation of arrangements for friendly ports and turnaround facilities in other nations that will increase the range, flexibility, and sustainability of Indian naval operations.”

    Mohan says this makes Indian strategists uncomfortable. For decades they have rejected anyone building “foreign bases” in the Indian Ocean – something India itself must now do, Mohan argues.

    Ghosh argues against becoming the big brother of the region. In 2008, he helped organize the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium, a forum for talking and cooperation on common issues between the naval chiefs of 28 Indian Ocean nations.

    “Initially there was a lot of apprehension in the minds of a lot of countries as to what was the hidden agenda,” says Ghosh.

    India, he says, went to great lengths to explain this wasn’t an effort to become big brother but to create a forum with the Indian Navy – the largest in the region – as the “unintrusive fulcrum.”

    For now, that’s the right posture for India, argues Ghosh.

    “I firmly believe that if you’ve got to carry a big stick, please talk softly,” he says. “I think there are a lot of negativities associated with being visualized as a hegemon.”


    China warships dock in Burma, rattling rival naval power India - CSMonitor.com
     
  2.  
  3. neo29

    neo29 Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,284
    Likes Received:
    30
    Location:
    india
    Notice how US media is doing a China bashing to make India worried of the news its flashing. First missiles, gilgit region and now china in IOR.

    Its very clear that US is making India concerned about China through media. This is obviously for the reason that US wants India to come overboard in the group that is trying to contain China. We must be very careful in dealing with these US reports.
     
  4. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    Messages:
    24,272
    Likes Received:
    11,273
    Location:
    BANGalore
    Navies make port of call routinely. nothing to be alarmed by this except that we need to have a cautious watch.
     
  5. deepak75

    deepak75 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is more to be cosidered as a response to the US naval movements with South Korea and Vietnam in the last days and also Sec. Clinton's comments regarding the South China sea situation. Further, it is only encouraging that China now needs to overtly show its hand in trying to repair the damage that it has suffered with the Myanmaar Junta over last months. It never needed to do it earlier so India must have done something right with Myanmaar finally over last years.
     
  6. Rebelkid

    Rebelkid Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2010
    Messages:
    453
    Likes Received:
    24
    Nothing to be worried about, US are just desperate. I hope saner minds win over in both sides of the border...
     
  7. Neil

    Neil Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,610
    Likes Received:
    1,946
    Location:
    India

    yeah but US is not wrong...china is creating problem for us and the region...and why cant we join US in containing china when we can join china in countering US on climate change....
    and even Indian army today has said china is in PoK...which means that the reports are true....

    and dude....whats gilgit region....??!!thats are part of land and we still call it J&K...i guess....
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  8. Illusive

    Illusive Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    2,335
    Likes Received:
    1,418
    Today Burma tomorrow they'll be in Sri Lanka. I think they are making a statement to India but India hasn't even given a reply yet. I believe Chinese intentions are not looking good and they are preparing for something big. Other than that its for the GOI to decide whether to act or not.
     
  9. amoy

    amoy Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,519
    Likes Received:
    1,544
    India joined the US headed 'peace keeping' military exercise 'Khan Quest' in Mongolia. u won't call that 'creating problems' for China will u?

    really no need to make a fuss over those projects. those were more for a strategic gateway to Arabian Sea than of any 'containing' implication. Of course it enhances 'fossilization' of de facto control of Pakistan over that area. mutual recognition is better than mutual denial isn't it?
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  10. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2009
    Messages:
    43,118
    Likes Received:
    23,543
    Location:
    Somewhere
    Anything that the US does with any other country in the area which China feels is her 'sphere of influence' does irk China. Justifiable, since China feels she is on equal terms as the US as a superpower.

    However, where China is different from others is that China has the tendency to act coy and moralistic about her 'indiscretions' (if one should term her actions that provoke so)!

    On a humorous note, one of my friends who thinks he is a wag, told me, that China docked in Myanmar just to check if her ships can reach that far or not! :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  11. amoy

    amoy Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,519
    Likes Received:
    1,544
    of course India, Japan, S Korea, and US looked quite suspicious in their joint 'peace keeping' activities in Mongolia a land locked country btwn Russia and China.

    In contrast China's self-serving intent is quite clear but not coy - a corridor to Arabian Sea also in connection with the rail network to Iran, that serves both China and Pakistan that will give under developed South Xinjiang a boost as well as Pakistan held Gilgit and Baltistan, behind the LoC btwn Pak and Ind but very vulnerable to Indian attacks.
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  12. youngindian

    youngindian Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2009
    Messages:
    1,360
    Likes Received:
    71
    :emot15:...............................:special10::special10:
     
  13. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2010
    Messages:
    5,711
    Likes Received:
    723
    Location:
    Bihar, BanGalore , India
    but whatever USA is leaking if fact . They positioned missiles and are in Gilgit as well. USA is trying to bring us to their camp but is China even trying not to push us towards. their action clearly shows that they are lest bothered to our sensitivity.
     
  14. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2009
    Messages:
    43,118
    Likes Received:
    23,543
    Location:
    Somewhere
    It is correct that China has to protect the construction of the link from Pakistan to Xinjaing.

    However, China is killing two birds with one stone.

    China has to woo Pakistan since it is the womb of [l]Jihadi[/i] terrorism and Xinjiang, which is China’s golden goose is of Muslim majority and the Uighurs are not at all enamoured by the demographic invasion by the Hans or the latter reaping a rich harvest of their resources at the expense of the well being of the Uighurs and other Muslim minorities of the region. Therefore, calming the womb and acting as a friend is absolute essential for China’s religious peace.

    China does act coy and moralistic. Just see how they justify support to rogue regimes like that of Zimbabwe and Sudan and funnel in military hardware for near genocide!!

    In so far as Gilgit and Baltistan being vulnerable to Indian attacks, check the wars fought and see what happened on this front compared to the real fronts. Hardly noticeable!

    India does not have to do anything. The Sunni government of Pakistan is doing it for India. Suppressing the Shia majority and attempting to change the demography by infusing the Sunnis from Pakthun areas is enough for the Baltis and other to see red!! There is a rebellion supposed to be on as per the US media and it is said that the Chinese are suppressing them on behalf of Pakistan.
     
  15. amoy

    amoy Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,519
    Likes Received:
    1,544
    actually I agree with your friend, china's navy is hardly a rival in IOR. thus docking at Burma is not even a storm in the teapot.

    I believe u know India already invests heavily in oil fields of that rogue Sudan. then May we say India is funding that 'genocide'? Furthermore there're 3 points
    1) your labelling Sudan or Zimbabwe as rogues seems not in line with Indian Gvnmt's 'pragmatic' approaches. India laso supports Sudan's sovereign integrity.
    2) deriding China's practice in 'rogue states' doesn't elevate India's moral height over such issues.
    3) China doesn't need any justification... In the end problems in countries like Sudan in the end have to be resolved through more 'development'. Sudan, extremely poverty smitten, for example is basically divided by how they distribute oil wealth btwn South (Black Chritian) and North (Arabic) . They need to work it out themselves through reconciliation. Chinese is consistent in making investment in Sudan a win-win along with other investors (West, India, Malaysia...), but without forcing our ideas upon others. In this regard, China shall be proud.
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  16. youngindian

    youngindian Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2009
    Messages:
    1,360
    Likes Received:
    71
  17. JBH22

    JBH22 Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2010
    Messages:
    3,620
    Likes Received:
    2,389
    All this blah blah is for nothing we are internally Babu/netaji concerned only about domestic squabbles,our forces are tied in many internal COIN operations we are fighting on 2 many fronts.

    Perhaps getting a US type presidency here might put our political house in order which would in turn help to develop a good foreign policy
     
  18. sandeepdg

    sandeepdg Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2009
    Messages:
    2,333
    Likes Received:
    216
    Location:
    Gurgaon/Noida
    We should not make too much of a fuss about this issue since warships making a port of call is nothing of a big issue. And the Chinese doing so in Myanmar, should have been hardly surprising since Beijing is an important ally of Junta government, and also provides substantial military aid to them. As long as such actions are not provocative in nature, I think we should stay cool but cautious, and that is exactly what the defense establishment is doing, as obviously they very well know how to respond to such issues. Anyway, Chinese warships routinely move around in the Arabian sea all the way upto the Horn of Africa for anti-piracy ops, so making a port of call in Burma is hardly a big deal for PLAN.
     
  19. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Messages:
    4,404
    Likes Received:
    2,782
    Location:
    Gangtok, Sikkim, India
    Sorry to say 'comrade', but China is indeed becoming a problem for us.

    In political arena,

    we have issues like refusal of accepting Arunachal as our state, issuing stapled visas for Kashmiri Indians, attempt to sabotage and block loan for infrastructure and agriculture development in Arunachal, backtracking on accepting us Sikkimese as Indians, accusing HH Dalai Lama as a "terrorist", alleged supposed of Naxalites (how the hell otherwise does the state-run Chinese arms industry manage to donate Chinese made AKs and M16 copies to Naxals, eh?), attempting to obstruct Brahmaputra river's course through dams throughout the bordering region;satellite photos by ISRO has already been shown as proof... and many other issues.

    In military arena

    String of pearls, models of Indo-China border area, repeated and increase incursions into our area, using Aksai Chin as a threat for ballistic missiles, threatening Bhutan, threatening Ladakhi shepherds, violating Indian airspace with military helicopters... you want to know more?

    If you carefully look around with eyes open, you will see that USA might have an interest in countering Chinese rise; but our issues with China are independent of USA's interest and we definitely have problems with Chinese who are being aggressive, while our government is being a coward.

    We have all the options in the world to cooperate with USA in limited manner. The less we Indians suffer from Stockholm Syndrome, the better it is.
     

Share This Page