Why Russia Won't Choose Sides Between China And India

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by TrueNeo, Nov 16, 2017.

  1. TrueNeo

    TrueNeo Regular Member

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    Russia's President Vladimir Putin, (L), India Prime Minister Narendra Modi, (C), and China's President Xi Jinping meet at the BRICS summit in 2016. (PRAKASH SINGH/AFP/Getty Images)


    A few weeks after a military standoff between Chinese and Indian troops began near the Doklam plateau in June, the China Global Television Network, a 24 hours English-language state-owned news channel, askedwhy Russia had been “silent” on the matter. Granted, Moscow had made few public comments about the border tensions. But so, too, had America and the EU, both of which knew that siding with one party would anger the other.

    However, RT, a Kremlin-funded news agency that often ventriloquizes the thoughts of the Russian state, did produce a number of reports about the dispute and most were rather balanced between China and India’s interests.

    The standoff eventually dissipated in August when the two nations agreed to withdraw their troops. But the geopolitical fallout leaves pertinent questions. If tensions between China and India are to become a new normal, as some analysts think, then how do other nations respond? Just as important, how are Asia’s superpowers, including China, India and Russia, going to balance competing interests?

    Is Moscow Meddling?

    In April, before the border dispute began, news emerged that the Russian government had tried to bring together the Indian and Chinese defense ministers for a meeting in Moscow. Beijing, however, reportedly refused to send along Defense Minister Chang Wanquan, who was already in the Russian capital for an international security conference.

    Some believe this was because India had recently hosted the Dalai Lama in Arunachal Pradesh, an Indian state that borders China’s “autonomous” region of Tibet. Others saw it as an indication of Beijing’s distrust of Moscow’s real motives. In July, Global Times, a jingoistic Chinese state-run tabloid, opinedthat New Delhi “wants to weigh which is more important to Russia: China or itself.”

    There is the opinion that Moscow wants a more assertive India to counterbalance China’s growing hegemony in Asia . Russia has long supported India’s ascension to having a permanent seat in a “reformed” UN Security Council, for example. And, in March, the Kremlin publicly backed India’s bid to become a member of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), a coalition of 48 nuclear supplier countries that control the export of nuclear equipment and technology.

    For India, which possesses nuclear power, inclusion in the group is important given that its northern enemy, Pakistan, also has nuclear capabilities. Moreover, nuclear energy is an economic concern for India-Russia relations. Moscow and Delhi signed an agreement in 2014 that aims to build 12 Russia-designed nuclear power stations in India. But China has opposed India’s accession to the group since it first tried to join last year. Formally, it says this is because New Delhi is not yet a signatory to the Non-Nuclear-Proliferation Treaty. China’s opposition was successful, and India has to wait another year to apply to join the group.

    Russia is also thought to have backed India’s successful ascension, in July, to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a Eurasian security and economic bloc. Derek Grossman, a senior defense analyst at the RAND Corporation, an American think tank, claimedthat Russia sponsored India “mainly to constrain China’s growing influence in the organization.” He added, in his article for the Diplomat, that Russia is concerned the post-Soviet SCO members like Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan “are drifting too far into China’s geostrategic orbit.” This is clearly a view supported by some Chinese intellectuals.

    “Does Russia support India’s accession to the SCO for the sake of common development, or for counterbalancing China?” a Global Times editorial asked in July.

    More Than Bilateralism

    Russia’s relationship with India has been solid since the Soviet era and this year marks the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations. But relying on the past might not be enough, according to a joint report published recently by two think tanks, the Russian International Affairs Council and India’s Vivekananda International Foundation. “Giving a new impetus to Moscow-New Delhi relations would allow Russia to diversify its efforts in Asia. It is necessary for India and Russia to prevent third countries from exerting significant influence on their bilateral ties,” it reads.

    Clearly, this is intended to indicate concerns within Moscow and New Delhi that the other party is gravitating towards their adversaries. Russia knows India wants to form closer ties to the U.S. and European nations. Just this week, India took part in talks with Japan, America and Australia over reforming the disbanded Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, an ostensible counter-China pact that seeks to curb Beijing’s expansionism in the South China Sea and Indian Ocean.

    A month after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Moscow in June, China’s warships engaged in the first-ever joint war games with the Russian fleet in the Baltic Sea. The Economist reported that Russia and China “wanted to send a message to America and to audiences at home: we are united in opposing the West’s domination, and we are not afraid to show off our muscle in NATO’s backyard.” The same month, Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Moscow where Putin decorated him with the Order of St Andrew, Russia’s highest state award. Xi has visited Moscow more often than any other capital since coming to power in 2012, the Economist also noted. In addition, New Delhi is concerned about Russia’s relations with Pakistan, India’s long-time foe, which have been improving since the early 2000s.

    The RIC Returns

    But stressing anti-Western cooperation with China isn’t the same as the Kremlin turning its back on India , nor fully embracing relations with Beijing. Russia, under Putin, has tried to defy a supposed unipolar global order led by America and, today, a united Europe overseen by the EU. Now, it appears, Russia is balking against a possible uni-polar Asia and Eurasia dominated by China. Supporting India, then, becomes a way for Russia to achieve this. But Western sanctions on Russia have meant it has had to move closer to China, further complicating its role as an intermediary between India and China.

    Indeed, while many in India’s defense community think better relations with the West is the way forward, some are of the opinion that more effort should be put on strengthening the trilateral annual Russia-India-China (RIC) meetings, which have taken place since 2002 between scholars, business leaders and foreign ministers. However, these have so far failed to upgrade into regular political or security summits. The next RIC Foreign Ministers meeting is expected to be held in New Delhi next month.

    Maybe, then, we will learn more about how Russia views its position between India and China.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidh...e-sides-between-china-and-india/#3aeb54a6d7a3
     
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  3. Rus

    Rus New Member

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    Hi, wanted to know more and discuss with respected forum members about position of New-Delhi on dialogue of international policy strategy in the frames India-Russia-China dialogue and co-operation.Thank you
    As well as the position on TAPI - Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project, which has been widely discussed all over.
     
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  4. TrueNeo

    TrueNeo Regular Member

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  5. aliyah

    aliyah Regular Member

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    with falling oil rate TAPI is not economically viable today. and presently india wants to avoid any economic investment in pak.
     
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  6. no smoking

    no smoking Senior Member Senior Member

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    On one hand, India sees China as her number one enemy, so you can't imagine you will work with your top opponent on most of strategic issues;
    On the other hand, India has been taking a neutral stance in international stage: commits to neither side. Russian and Chinese don't see that they can offer enough to induce India to change this stance.

    So, simply put this way: there is no such thing of Russia-India-China frame.
     
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  7. TrueNeo

    TrueNeo Regular Member

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    A rediscovery of non-alignment
    Delhi discards the ambiguities of the 1970s, appears ready to do business on the basis of enlightened self-interest.
    Written by C. Raja Mohan |Updated: November 14, 2017 10:07 am

    Why is a low-key meeting between officials from four nations — India, US, Japan and Australia — taking place after a gap of 10 years drawing so much attention? After all, India has joined so many mini-lateral forums since the end of the Cold War. That America is a big part of the quad provides a partial answer.

    Although Indian officials have been sitting down with their American and Japanese counterparts for some years now, the quad comes amidst the growing Chinese unilateralism in Asia. India did much the same when it sought to hedge against America’s unipolar moment by forming a political triad with Russia and China that later became the BRICS to include Brazil and South Africa.


    If the explicit purpose of the triad was to promote a “multipolar world”, the quad has the big task of preventing the emergence of a “unipolar Asia” dominated by China. But compared to the BRICS, which convenes annual summits and makes such big moves as creating new international financial institutions, the quad has a long way to go. It is also useful to remember the quad was formed a decade ago and disbanded soon after.

    BRICS issues long joint statements on all contemporary issues. After their meeting in Manila, the quad officials did not put out a collective version of the deliberations. They issued separate national statements. If you are a foreign policy geek, you might find a nuanced variation in the emphases.

    All the renewed quad did this week was to identify their shared interests on promoting connectivity, countering terrorism, addressing proliferation of nuclear weapons, and encourage respect for international law. It will be a while before they move towards effective actions on the ground. Meanwhile, the foreign ministers of India, China and Russia are gathering in Delhi next month. That should rule out much of the apprehensions of the quad as an “alliance to contain China”. None of the four countries are interested in containment. In fact, the US, Japan and Australia have much deeper economic and political ties with China than India.

    That India is open to both the quad and triad suggests not the construction of new alliances, but Delhi’s return to the original conception of non-alignment. The persistent Indian anxieties on the quad are not about the high principle of strategic autonomy. They reflect the entrenched political distrust of America that expresses itself on any issue involving partnership with the US — whether it was the multilateral nuclear initiative, mini-lateral regional coordination through the quad, or the bilateral defence framework.

    Contrary to the popular view, distrust of America was not written into independent India’s DNA. India’s founding fathers did not define non-alignment as “anti-Americanism”. That distortion was a product of the 1970s. As US-India relations deteriorated and domestic politics drifted towards left-wing populism, a new dogma emerged. It decreed that working with Soviet Russia was “progressive” and cooperation with America meant “surrendering national sovereignty”. In utter perversity, “non-alignment” was interpreted as “aligning” with Soviet Russia.

    But this framework could not have survived without some correspondence with the new balance of power system that emerged around India. It was based on the deterioration of Sino-Indian relations after the 1962 war, breakdown of the socialist solidarity between Soviet Union and China, Sino-American rapprochement, and the Indo-Soviet entente. If America and China drew closer to Pakistan, Delhi tied up with Moscow.

    This system began to slowly unravel after the Cold War ended. In the new era, conflict among the major powers ebbed. India opened up its economy to globalisation and Western capital and technology. Restoration of cooperation with America became central to the recalibration of India’s foreign policy since the 1990s.

    If America has become more empathetic since then to India’s concerns on terrorism, Kashmir and global nuclear order, a rising China has turned hostile. To make matters worse, tensions on the disputed Sino-Indian border have become more frequent and intense. Moscow, which once helped India balance China, is now in a tight embrace with Beijing.

    The proposition that India must tilt to one side, towards Russia and China, and keep distance from America is a legacy from the 1970s. It does not square with contemporary reality. Russia and China, which are both eager to cut separate deals with America, can’t demand a veto over Delhi’s ties to Washington.

    The original conception of non-alignment was about building strong ties with all the major powers and making independent judgements about international affairs. In what was described as “suckling from two cows”, Delhi benefited immensely from simultaneous cooperation with Washington and Moscow in the 1950s and 1960s.

    Discarding the ambiguities inherited from the 1970s, Delhi now appears ready to expand cooperation with the West or East on the basis of enlightened self-interest. If the quad helps India improve its ability to defeat terrorism, improve regional connectivity and extend its its naval reach, Delhi is not going to thumb its nose. If China is ready to cooperate on terrorism and stop blocking India’s rise, Delhi will be happy explore the multiple possibilities with Beijing. If this is not non-alignment we really don’t know what is.

    The writer is director, Carnegie India, Delhi and contributing editor on foreign affairs for ‘The Indian Express’
     
  8. Butter Chicken

    Butter Chicken Senior Member Senior Member

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    Russia will 100% support China if push comes to shove(if not now,then certainly after the next 5-10 years).Russian economic dependence on China is too much,and with the rise of electric vehicles,Russia will become puppet state of China by 2030
     
  9. TrueNeo

    TrueNeo Regular Member

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    Russia won't choose sides, India can't choose sides, China isn't left with a side to choose. Russia-India-China make the right combination to restart and lead non aligned movement.
     
  10. Butter Chicken

    Butter Chicken Senior Member Senior Member

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    In an ideal world I would prefer India to be friends with China rather than than USA,but China has actively acted against Indian interests for decades,including active nuclear proliferation to Terroristan and North Korea(which supplied missile tech to Terroristan),blocking terrorists from sanctions,invading Aksai Hind and blocking market access for Indian firms,and is building CPEC through PoK
     
  11. TrueNeo

    TrueNeo Regular Member

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    The world is not ideal for any nation, we just happened to see and wished to make others see it from our perspective that put us in this uncomfortable situation. Everyone (China, Russia/Soviet, US etc) acted in their interest, we were just hoping none would interfere in ours. Thanks to Nehru who himself admitted to be out of touch from reality in his last years before his death. Chinks supplied missile tech with Yankees support. We need leader with greater insights on geo political realities, able to perceive opponent moves in advance rather than wait for things to happen. PM Modi who I don't think is best but is a more determined person than other alternatives right now. As for China blocking Pak based terrorist, they are testing us if we are actually capable of giving them the finger and Modi ji shows that we do and will. Pretty sure they will come on board with us soon enough.
     
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  12. Compersion

    Compersion Senior Member Senior Member

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    Russia being able to have voice and "choice" and part of such is more because of India. Russia knows far well such moods and reasons ... and abilities

    Russia also knows far well the truth and reality of yesterday, today and tomorrow and how it aligns (no matter which perseverance for their choice they might have). *to support X because India does not do A doesnt work that way. When B is required by India it will. India and Russia relations are strong and will be. India also needs to develop and achieve its rightful place and will be grateful to Russia. When someone gives due credence it is not a small matter. When someone has no reason for ill comfort it does matter. When someone is trying to create impediment in relations it does matter. The above article is not accurate.
     

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