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China's Xi Jinping takes his first step to challenge Modi's rising clout in South Asia

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by lca-fan, Oct 19, 2017.

  1. lca-fan

    lca-fan Major SENIOR MEMBER

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    China's Xi Jinping takes his first step to challenge Modi's rising clout in South Asia
    Wednesday, October 18, 2017 By: ET Source Link: CLICK HERE[​IMG]

    Wednesday is an important day for Prime Minister Narendra Modi. What makes it important is because of what's happening in neighbouring China.

    While Modi is seen as a brave leader who can ignore checks and balances for bold reforms, he is also seen as a strong-arm leader outside India, especially after India’s surgical strikes in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. India’s challenge to China during the Doklam standoff only amplified this persona.

    On the backfoot after the border skirmish, Xi Jinping is trying to turn the page at the critical once-in-five years party congress of the top leaders of the Communist Party of China. Considered China's most powerful leader since Deng Xiaoping or even Mao Zedong, Xi will try to use the congress to lay the foundation to stay atop the 89-million-strong party even longer than the normal 10 years.

    That would break the unwritten two-term limit accepted by his immediate predecessors Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao -- who were by Xi's side at the congress -- and end the era of "collective leadership" aimed at preventing the emergence of another Mao.

    The congress is expected to cement Xi's authority that will further strengthen his power to pursue an aggressive policy abroad. The 19th edition of the congress assumes significance for Xi as he will have a far greater ability to choose his colleagues than he had in the last congress held in 2012.

    It is because of this the developments in Beijing will be closely watched in Delhi’s policy circles.

    Another term for Xi does not augur well for Modi.

    First, China has lately started asserting in the world economic sphere, especially with its One-Belt-One-Road (OBOR) project. OBOR needles India as it passes through Indian territory occupied by Pakistan. A stronger and more confident Xi will not only find a new zeal to increase China’s global economic clout but can also flex its economic muscle in the region by investing in more infrastructure projects in the region, which will also give it strategic as well as diplomatic heft at India’s expense.

    Second, a stronger and more confidant Xi can also escalate the border tussle with India. Xi wants to make China the number one global power by replacing USA but finds rising India a stumbling block. India’s growing alliances in Indo-Pacific region (Japan, Australia and Southeast nations such as Vietnam, Singapore and Indonesia) and with USA to rebalance China’s aggression is viewed as an obstacle by the Chinese regime.

    Xi would like to test India newly acquired confidence, especially with regard to Bhutan. India and Bhutan have a special security arrangement under which India will extend support whenever the Himalayan state faces a security threat.

    Doklam may be over but China is not going to digest the humiliation that India posed to it. China may have pulled out of the border tussle due to the upcoming Congress. After the Congress, it can escalate tension with India. India’s Modi-led efforts to gain supremacy in the region will come under serious challenge with a stronger Xi. Modi’s ‘Act East’ policy can face strong resistance from China.

    One positive for Modi is that with Xi growing stronger, there will be greater liking for stronger leaders in India. That will ensure he remains popular with the masses.

    http://www.defencenews.in/article/C...lenge-Modis-rising-clout-in-South-Asia-434060

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  2. Nilgiri

    Nilgiri Lieutenant GEO STRATEGIC ANALYST

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    We can use the stability though. The brittle nature of leadership Xi brings (with no ability of popular verification from the public) long term is also welcome for India....because all the fractures that have been initiated will be given time and space to grow even more and posit real change and political reform down the road.
     
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  3. _Anonymous_

    _Anonymous_ 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    There's a corollary to your narrative too . If the internal party squabbling mounts or if the downturn in the economy results in popular unrest or if the massive purges Xi's initiated unites his detractors , aggression directed outwards may act as a great unifier and a safety valve .

    It's a times tested formula of the CCP.

    I wouldn't be too sanguine about the brittleness of the Xi regime .
     
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  4. Nilgiri

    Nilgiri Lieutenant GEO STRATEGIC ANALYST

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    Possibly, we will have to wait and see I guess. My contacts from China (origin) say if there are such purges, the likely initial targets are going to be domestic given quite a huge hit list the CCP has on businessmen and other elites they see as not CCP enough (and great scapegoats with delicious piles of cash and equity to vacuum up and "redistribute")....which will give a warning flag well in advance to any sustained foreign aggression (which is really a gamble given it could severely blow back on CCP if they dont pick someone a fraction their size...and then its catch 22 because someone small doesn't bring the "victory" needed to release internal pressure etc).
     
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