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India’s elites naively think Quad can help in border issue

| 作者: Lan Jianxue | 时间: 2021-10-18 | 责编:
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  With India still insisting on unreasonable demands, the 13th round of China-India Corps Commander Level Meeting between India and China arrived at a deadlock. Frustrated by the setback, some Indian analysts have expressed various ideas, some have even touted the role of the Quad. 

  "Where is [the] Quad when China doesn't vacate the areas that it has captured? Where is [the] Quad when China is amassing troops at the border and turns LAC to LoC?" Ashok Swain, a scholar of Indian origin, tweeted on Monday, indicating that the Quad should play a role in China-India border tensions.  

  Some of India's strategic elite also harbor such idea, which is a trend worthy of vigilance. India's attempts to encroach on China's territory across the border have failed. Now India is anxious and frustrated and may believe it cannot achieve its territorial claims and ambition through bilateral interactions with China. Many of India's elite have now come up with a new idea -hoping the Quad, officially the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, a group of four countries namely the US, Australia, India, and Japan, can play a role in its border tensions with China. They may test this idea through media outlets and analysts. The possibility the Indian government will attempt to leverage the US and the Quad to encroach on China's territory cannot be ruled out.   

  New Delhi sees the Quad as a last straw against China and its proactive participation in the bloc gives some analysts in India more confidence in its fighting with China, which is an absurd strategic misjudgment.   

  The Quad is essentially a group that serves the selfish geostrategic interests of the US. Japan, Australia and India are all pawns on the US strategic chessboard. Japan and Australia are allies of the US, while India holds a relatively marginalized position in the group. New Delhi seems ignorant of the fact that its role in the Quad is being exploited.   

  On the Afghan issue, the international community has already seen how cruel Washington has been in attempting to achieve its geopolitical ambitions. It will prioritize its own interests and abandon its allies at a critical moment. Yet, it seems India has not realized that the closer it moves toward the US, the greater the risk of being constrained or abandoned.   

  The Quad countries are at odds with each other, as each of them continues cooperating with China. The Quad has not brought benefit to India, such as easier access to COVID-19 vaccines and supply chains. The US, Japan, and Australia are still paying lip service to India when it comes to specific interests. India still doesn't understand that if India becomes a US pawn as die-hard as Japan and Australia, its position in the international arena will further decline.   

  If Washington, Tokyo, and Canberra want to intervene in the border dispute between Beijing and New Delhi, they may get into trouble and gain no actual benefit. All three countries cooperate closely with China, which is among their largest trading partners. The US, Japan and Australia need China's cooperation on internal, regional, and international affairs, and becoming completely hostile to China will not produce a good result.   

  The Quad hasn't brought any substantial benefits to India, perhaps psychological comfort is all. As India becomes more involved in the Quad, its room for strategic maneuvering on the international stage will be compressed. It will also trigger negative reactions from China, Russia, Pakistan and Iran.    

  (The author is director of the Department for Asia-Pacific Studies at China Institute of International Studies. Source: Global Times, October 12, 2021)

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