China aims to outmatch the India-Pacific Quad led by the U.S. – Modern Diplomacy

There is no question that over the past decade, the United States has driven the India-Pacific strategy, e.g. the Quad and AUKUS, to contain the peaceful rise of China. In addition, Washington has made all efforts to persuade the countries in the region to support its geopolitical scheme. Vietnam is the focus that the U.S. and Japan have tryied to win over in the final competition with China. To that end, some of media, politicians and radical groups in the West have exaggerated the bitter memories of history entertained by Vietnam so that it will be aroused to confront China by its psychological and security concerns.
To that end, the U.S. has tirelessly wooed Vietnam to join its challenge to the legitimate claims of China in the South China Sea and its accusation of China to have held back large amount of the Mekong as it flows through six countries including Vietnam and China where the river starts. They claim that since China has unilaterally blocked free flow of the Mekong river for its own reservoirs, it has consequently led to a severe drought in other five countries concerned.
Actually, China has consistently called for the six Lancang-Mekong countries a de facto community with a shared future linked by the same river and also has regularly shared annual hydrological information for the other countries concerned so that they would jointly better utilize water resources while addressing climate change and the natural disasters involved. It is fair to argue that since the end of the Cold War, China has acted responsibly in terms of common interests with its neighbors including Vietnam.
In the study of international relations, the major considerations in foreign policy-making of each country are mainly geography, history and the shared interests as well as the ideological affinity. First, both China and Vietnam are well-aware that neither side could change the reality that the two countries are linked with each other by the shared mountains and rivers. More than that, as two largest Communist Parties in the world, China and Vietnam have shared the long-term friendship and solidarity in fights against the imperialism and hegemony during the 20th century. Now they are facing the historic tasks of how to build up socialist system in accordance with its own scenario. Beijing and Hanoi have made clear to further deepen good-neighbor relations in terms of good-neighborly friendship, future orientation and all-round cooperation in a constructive way. Cultural-ideologically, since the U.S. is so adamant in anti-Communist China, it would never be lenient to a Communist-led Vietnam or any one in the near future. Given this, China and Vietnam have no choices but work in concert on the issues of national security, social-economic security and ideological security to defend the common interests of socialist countries.
Internationally, although China and Vietnam are both the socialist countries under the Communist leadship, only five-claimed in the world today, they have been deeply involved in the global economic system. For instance, China is the largest economy in Asia and the second largest one in the world while Vietnam is seen as one of the most vibrant economies in the ASEAN. In addition, the two countries have agreed to synergize their development strategies such as the Belt and Road Initiative and the Two Corridors plus One Economic Circle. In return, they will further highlight and consolidate the socialist economic foundation between the two countries. For decades, China has been Vietnam’s largest trading partner and one of the major sources of foreign direct investment (FDI). Despite COVID-19 disruptions, Vietnam is still China’s largest trading partner in the ASEAN with bilateral trade exceeding $230 billion in 2021.
In the wake of his re-election to the General Secretary of the Chinese leading party, Xi Jinping who is also President of China formally invited his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Phu Trong to lead a high-level delegation to visit China from October 30 to November 2. Trong and his entourage received the warm welcome in Beijing on November 31 including a solemn ceremony of presenting the Friendship Medal of China to him by Xi personally. It symbolizes the friendship of “comrades plus brothers” between the two countries and the two Parties as Xi and Trong vowed to cherish and preserve the foundation of the Sino-Vietnamese relations.
In history, the Party-to-Party diplomacy has played an integral role in effecting the general agenda of Chinese foreign relations since the early 1950s. Inherited from the first-generation leaders of the CCP, the current leadership headed by Xi has made remarkable progresses to promote the role of the Party-to-Party diplomacy in the new era. One seminal case is that the CPC held a high-level dialogues between the CPC and the political parties of the world in 2017 with the theme of rebuilding international community of shared future. As China and Vietnam are both the neighboring countries and the socialist states led by the Communist Party of each country, it is necessary to maintain the inter-governmental dialogues over the core issues while charting the course of the inter-Party coordination since they have revealed the sincerity and wisdom to seek an early settlement of maritime disputes and the core issues concerned.
In sum, Trong’s state visit to China sends a clear message to the world that Vietnam is not only a socialist cstate but also together with the ASEAN never be a sidekick of the US strategy against China. The ASEAN has their own interests to defend and their own strategy to implement. Prior to his trip to China, Trong had spoken to the effect that as Vietnam was now in the vortex of the intensified China-U.S. competition, it has to cautiously manage its relations with the two great powers. On the one hand, maintaining close relations with China has always been a top priority of Vietnam’s diplomacy; on the other hand, Vietnam has attempted to further develop relations with the United States. But Hanoi needs to allay China’s rising concerns about the fast-growing U.S.-Vietnam relationship in recent years, particularly the defense cooperation between Vietnam and the United States in the South China Sea.
It is enough to say that one fundamental principle of Vietnamese politics goes along the way to reach an equilibrium between Idealpolitik and Realpolitik that follows its “Four Noes” policy: “not to join any military alliance, not to ally with any country targeting the third party, not to allow foreign countries to set up military bases in Vietnam or use its territory against other countries, and not to use force or threaten the use of force in international relations.” Given this, China seems to have outmatched the U.S. India-Pacific strategy in terms of the peace and development in the region.
Modernization Journey of China
Wang Li is Professor of International Relations and Diplomacy at the School of International and Public Affairs, Jilin University China.
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Since opening up and reforms initiated in 1978, modernization was a dream of the Chinese people. But, during the last ten years, the drive for modernization was more focused, more intense, and more specific.
Recently concluded the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), held on 16-22 October 2022, in Beijing, has defined the road map of its modernization.
Onward, the central task of the Communist Party of China will be to lead the Chinese people of all ethnic groups in a concerted effort to realize the Second Centenary Goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects and to advance the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernization.
Based on decades of exploration and practice since the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, especially since the launch of reform and opening up in 1978, as well as the new breakthroughs made in theory and practice since the 18th National Congress, we have succeeded in advancing and expanding Chinese modernization.
Chinese modernization is socialist modernization pursued under the leadership of the Communist Party of China. It contains elements that are common to the modernization processes of all countries, but it is more characterized by features that are unique to the Chinese context.
—It is the modernization of a huge population. China is working to achieve modernization for more than 1.4 billion people, a number larger than the combined population of all developed countries in the world today. This is a task of unparalleled difficulty and complexity; it inevitably means that our pathways of development and methods of advancement will be unique. It will, as always, bear China’s realities in mind as it addresses issues, make decisions, and take action. It will neither pursue grandiose goals nor go by the rulebook. It will stay patient in advancing the course of history and take steady and incremental steps to sustain progress.
—It is the modernization of common prosperity for all. Achieving common prosperity is a defining feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics and involves a long historical process. The immutable goal of our modernization drive is to meet the people’s aspirations for a better life. We will endeavor to maintain and promote social fairness and justice, bring prosperity to all, and prevent polarization.
         —It is the modernization of material and cultural-ethical advancement. Material abundance and cultural-ethical enrichment are fundamental goals of socialist modernization. Material want is not socialism, nor is cultural impoverishment. While continuing to consolidate the material foundation for modernization and improve the material conditions for people’s well-being, we will strive to develop advanced socialist culture, foster strong ideals and convictions, and carry forward China’s cultural heritage. It will thus promote all-around material abundance as well as people’s well-rounded development.
         —It is the modernization of harmony between humanity and nature. Humanity and nature make up a community of life. If we extract from nature without limit or inflict damage on it, we are bound to face its retaliation. China is committed to sustainable development and to the principles of prioritizing resource conservation and environmental protection and letting nature restore itself. We will protect nature and the environment as we do our own lives. We will continue to pursue a model of sound development featuring improved production, higher living standards, and healthy ecosystems to ensure the sustainable development of the Chinese nation.
         —It is the modernization of peaceful development. In pursuing modernization, China will not tread the old path of war, colonization, and plunder taken by some countries. That brutal and blood-stained path of enrichment at the expense of others caused great suffering for the people of developing countries. We will stand firmly on the right side of history and on the side of human progress. Dedicated to peace, development, cooperation, and mutual benefit, we will strive to safeguard world peace and development as we pursue our own development, and we will make greater contributions to world peace and development through our own development.
         The essential requirements of Chinese modernization are as follows: upholding the leadership of the Communist Party of China and socialism with Chinese characteristics, pursuing high-quality development, developing whole-process people’s democracy, enriching the people’s cultural lives, achieving common prosperity for all, promoting harmony between humanity and nature, building a human community with a shared future, and creating a new form of human advancement.
To build China into a great modern socialist country in all respects, we have adopted a two-step strategic plan:
Basically realize socialist modernization from 2020 through 2035
Build China into a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, and beautiful from 2035 through the middle of this century
China’s overall development objectives for the year 2035 are as follows:
Significantly increase economic strength, scientific and technological capabilities, and composite national strength; substantially grow the per capita GDP to be on par with that of a mid-level developed country
Join the ranks of the world’s most innovative countries, with great self-reliance and strength in science and technology
Build a modernized economy; form a new pattern of development; basically achieve new industrialization, informatization, urbanization, and agricultural modernization
Basically, modernize the system and capacity for governance; improve the system for whole-process people’s democracy; build a law-based country, government, and society
Become a leading country in education, science and technology, talent, culture, sports, and health; significantly enhance national soft power
Ensure that the people are leading better and happier lives; bring per capita disposable income to new heights; substantially grow the middle-income group as a share of the total population; guarantee equitable access to basic public services; ensure modern standards of living in rural areas; achieve long-term social stability; make more notable and substantive progress in promoting the people’s well-rounded development and prosperity for all
Broadly establish eco-friendly ways of work and life; steadily lower carbon emissions after reaching a peak; fundamentally improve the environment; largely accomplish the goal of building a Beautiful China
Comprehensively strengthen the national security system and national security capabilities; achieve basic modernization of national defense and the armed forces
After basically realizing modernization, we will continue to work hard and build China into a great modern socialist country that leads the world in terms of composite national strength and international influence by the middle of the century.
The next five years will be crucial for getting our efforts to build a modern socialist country in all respects off to a good start. Our main objectives and tasks for this period are as follows:
Make breakthroughs in promoting high-quality economic development; achieve greater self-reliance and strength in science and technology; make major progress in creating a new pattern of development and building a modernized economy
Make new strides in reform and opening up; make further progress in modernizing China’s system and capacity for governance; further, improve the socialist market economy; put in place new systems for a higher-standard open economy
Further enhance the institutions, standards, and procedures of whole-process people’s democracy; improve the system of socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics
Enrich the intellectual and cultural lives of our people; enhance the cohesion of the Chinese nation and the appeal of Chinese culture
Ensure personal income grows basically in step with economic growth and pay rises in tandem with increases in productivity; ensure much more equitable access to basic public services; develop a better multi-tiered social security system
Substantially improve urban and rural living environments; make notable progress in building a Beautiful China
Further, consolidate national security; fulfill the goals for the centenary of the People’s Liberation Army in 2027; make solid progress in building a Peaceful China
Further, increase China’s international standing and influence; enabling China to play a greater role in global governance
Building a modern socialist country in all respects is a great and arduous endeavor. Our future is bright, but we still have a long way to go. At present, momentous changes not seen in a century are accelerating across the world. A new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation is well underway, and a significant shift is taking place in the international balance of power, presenting China with new strategic opportunities in pursuing development. At the same time, however, the once-in-a-century pandemic has had far-reaching effects; a backlash against globalization is rising, and unilateralism and protectionism are mounting. The global economic recovery is sluggish, regional conflicts and disturbances are frequent, and global issues are becoming more acute. The world has entered a new period of turbulence and change.
At home, we face many deep-seated problems regarding reform, development, and stability that cannot be avoided or bypassed. In our efforts to strengthen the Party, and especially to improve conduct, build integrity, and combat corruption, we are confronted with many stubborn and recurrent problems. External attempts to suppress and contain China may escalate at any time.
Our country has entered a period of development in which strategic opportunities, risks, and challenges are concurrent and uncertainties and unforeseen factors are rising. Various “black swan” and “gray rhino” events may occur at any time. We must therefore be more mindful of potential dangers, be prepared to deal with worst-case scenarios, and be ready to withstand high winds, choppy waters, and even dangerous storms. On the journey ahead, we must firmly adhere to the following major principles.
China’s Modernization is beneficial for the people of China, as well as, for the rest of the world, especially the neighboring nations, friendly countries, and the developing world. China has been sharing its experience, extending assistance, and transferring technology to many countries around the globe for their modernization. Chinese assistance carries no extra stings or harsh conditions, yet is more flexible and fruitful. Chinese modernization is a ray of hope for many other nations and a source of inspiration.
Chinese President Xi Jinping announced the end of the week-long 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China on Saturday, urging “courage to fight for victory.” Xi told delegates at the Hall of the People to “work hard and be steadfast to go forward”. About 2,300 delegates have been meeting in Beijing since last week to change the party’s leadership team and the country’s future course.
The Chinese president said at the 20th Communist Party Congress that Beijing has full control of Hong Kong and will do the same with Taiwan. “Taiwan should be resolved by the Chinese people alone. We will pursue peaceful reunification with credibility and effort, but we won’t give up force and reserve the right to use all necessary measures “adding,
At the completion of its five-year conference, the Chinese Communist Party resolved to change its constitution to consolidate President Xi Jinping’s basic position and his political thinking within the party. The party elected its Central Committee, which will choose the Politburo Standing Committee.
After winning a third term, Xi swore to “work hard” to remain in power. He remarked, “China would open its door wider.” “We’ll deepen reform and opening up everything.” A third five-year term would make president Xi China’s most powerful leader since Mao Zedong. After winning his third term as Communist Party leader, the Chinese president appointed loyalists to the seven-member Standing Committee.
The revisions were adopted by a show of hands in the Great Hall of the People, where last week’s party congress was held.  In another context, the Communist Party added to its charter Beijing’s opposition to Taiwan independence. The resolution states that the Communist Party Congress “agrees to incorporate in its charter statements opposing and discouraging Taiwan
Xi has made no secret of his plans to make China a world power. Soon, he announced an expansionist strategy he called “the Chinese dream” in which he called for strengthening the army and economy together against US unilateralism.
Since his ascension to power a decade ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping has launched a number of campaigns to win or hold off the West. His most important steps in his country’s peaceful progress were reorganizing the economy, strengthening the Chinese army, and focusing society around a more ideologically devoted communist party. He also strengthened his country’s international presence against the United States.
According to World Bank data, 800 million Chinese fell into poverty throughout the previous decades. Deng Xiaoping, the architect of Chinese reform, began the transition from a command economy to a market economy, which Xi has finished in the past ten years after committing vast resources to it.
Xi has redirected billions to create local technologies, notably “semiconductors.” He curtailed the private sector’s capacities and reorganized state-owned firms to spend heavily in strategic areas. He also launched a campaign against major companies in various sectors, including the giant company “Tencent,” which was forced to launch tens of billions of dollars plans to fund education, agricultural technology, and poverty alleviation projects, according to Forbes.
China has become a significant economic power in a decade of steady expansion, with several high-quality achievements. China’s GDP in 2021 was $17.7 trillion, 18.5% of the world’s total. From 2013 through 2021, GDP rose at a 6.6% annual rate, above the worldwide 2.6%. China’s strong economic growth is a worldwide growth driver. In 2013-2021, it contributed 38.6% to world economic growth, more than the Group of Seven combined.
China’s overseas trade has grown strongly in the past decade as it opens up to the globe. In 2020, China overtook the U.S. as the world’s largest trading nation, with $5.3 trillion in foreign commerce, up from $4.4 trillion in 2012. China’s foreign trade volume reached $6.9 trillion last year, ranking first in the world. Its goods exports rose from $3.9 trillion in 2012 to $6.1 trillion last year, 13.5 percent of the world total. Moreover, Xi has reduced pollution. After having 6 of the world’s 10 most polluted cities, China now has 3.
Xi’s major initiative, “Belt and Road,” was launched in 2013 to revive the ancient Silk Road and improve communication between China and the outside world, from Central Asia to the Middle East, to Europe and Africa. Through this project, it aims to explore new markets and secure global supply chains to create sustained economic growth and social stability for itself and initiative participants.
Xi has maintained past presidents’ efforts with substantial changes. His initial moves were to adopt a fresh battle doctrine, centered on reducing the army’s reliance on ground forces alone and adopting a unified command in which the air force and technology play a key role. Xi increased the army’s budget, leading to China obtaining hundreds of medium and long-range ballistic missiles and the world’s largest fleet with 77 naval units, including two aircraft carriers. China now has 350 nuclear bombs and warheads. US intelligence estimated 700 nuclear warheads by 2027.
Xi Jinping, the ‘Core’ leader has unveiled his new Politburo Standing Committee inducting with four new loyalists, retiring Li Keqiang and Wang Yang, in his unprecedented third term. Elimination of four Politburo Standing Committee members, the highest decision-making body in China from the list of members of the new Central Committee, which oversees the party’s 97 million members indicates Xi Jinping’s complete overhaul of top hierarchy. The Central Committee, with around 200 full members, reports to the 25-member Politburo (now reduced to 24 members), which is headed by the Politburo Standing Committee. All these bodies have majority of Xi Jinping’s men (No women).
Historically, whenever a dictator’s ambition exceeded the bounds of worldwide toleration, it resulted in catastrophe for the nation and its people, who had given him encouragement through their mute toleration. Xi Jinping maintains tight control despite China’s economy performing relatively poorly compared to its last three predecessors, the unpopular “zero covid” policy, the failing BRI, infrastructure failures, the unfavourable international environment, and some discernible protest. He also disproves those who advocated the implosion theory for China and even imagined a coup against him. He would have naturally made some shrewd decisions in his favour to acquire the level that no one other than Chairman Mao Zedong did in China. Xi Jinping has risen, but the question remains- Is China rising?
Xi: An Overambitious Dictator?
 Reminding China about century of humiliation, Xi began his tenure by selling dreams to lift Chinese out of poverty and toward a developed society with Chinese characteristics and set timetables. In that he pushed through Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as a crusader to lead global infrastructure development, with recent offer to build an ‘open global economy’. It has increased global footprints/investments of China, hoping it to serve as growth engine for his country to fulfil Chinese dream to build a “moderately prosperous society and realize national rejuvenation”. Internationally he tried to project himself as the crusader for new and just international order, to check the hegemony of West especially US (Despite junking the ruling of PCA and violating UNCLOS), and now declared ‘new choice for humanity’ based on ‘scientific socialism’ and ‘Chinese wisdom’.  He did everything possible to make himself great, under the banner of ‘Making China Great’. He now promises ‘incomparable glory’ to China and seems to assume that Chinese people will accept him, without worthwhile checks and balances.
Post 19th Congress of CPC, China enshrined  “Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era” and ideas like BRI in the Chinese constitution. 20th Congress of CPC has added “new achievements” under Xi’s leadership, as “new developments” in the past five years to it. He continues to hold all levers of power through number of crucial appointments to include Chairman of reorganised CMC, Politburo Standing Committee and the President (to be formally endorsed in March 23 in Annual Legislative Session), with his loyalists holding top hierarchy, to rein PLA for him. His anti-corruption drive was most popular amongst masses seeing powerful people in jail, besides systematically eliminating the entire dissenting elements and possible competitors.
Is the Pot Really Boiling?
Proponents of ‘Implosion Theory’ for China will like to believe that the disgruntlement stoked by economic slowdown, Zero Covid policy pressures at grassroot level, banking failures, bankruptcy of infrastructure giants triggering housing scams, coupled with the strictest possible personal surveillance measures has created a pressure cooker kind of situation with very strong lid on top. The legal system stands hostage to party leadership to give strength to the boiling pot theory.
After assuming power in 2012 with a GDP growth of 7.9 percent, Xi oversaw China’s subsequent economic decline. His detractors in the CPC believe that his actual accomplishments do not merit his ascension to the rank of Mao, but the unsatisfied elements and lobby groups are kept in control by his extensive surveillance because questioning Xi ‘The Core’ is anti-national and results in imprisonment. Dissent has no place in “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era,” according to Xi, who has made this clear by establishing the watchdog body “National Supervisory Commission” and putting the National Security Law into effect.
Xi Jinping is aware of the internal difficulties mentioned above, as well as the fact that China has highly educated society with many of its citizens touring other democratic nations, who increasingly understand the realities of freedom. Significant internal concerns surround some of his actions, such as imposing restrictions on religious practises and forcing abortions on Uyghurs in Xinjiang, requiring Christians to replace images of Jesus Christ with those of Xi Jinping in order to receive government benefits, engaging in social engineering and mental profiling, and using force to try to suppress democratic ideas.
Smart Management of Boiling Pot!
In order to quell internal dissent, Xi has deftly constructed a narrative of himself as a crusader against Western hegemony, reminding everyone of centuries of humiliation, igniting nationalism within the country by playing the victim card to responses to his aggressive actions in the Taiwan Strait, South and East China Seas, and Himalayas, and the need to unite under his strong leadership as the national need, overriding all other concerns. In his opening statement to the 20th Congress, his overemphasis on “security” and “struggle” supports the notion that China is the victim of external aggression. It is possible to interpret Xi’s actions, forcing students to read Xi’s thoughts  (the equivalent of Mao’s Red Book), as an attempt to brainwash people into blindly believing in him.
His propaganda machinery has been able to built a narrative that despite certain pitfalls, the Chinese system of governance is better than more chaotic democracies which remain embroiled in protests, recording slower growth in last few decades. Dealing Uyghurs with iron hand he has also built a narrative to majority of Han Chinese staying in South-eastern half of the country that he has been able to give them secure environment with hardly any terrorist activities, unlike most democratic countries. The strict censorship of media and internet, mental profiling, electronic isolation of thoughts and the fear of harsh crackdown on dissenters has helped him to minimize unrests/disagreements. Xi has been able to manage that the ‘Hate America’ sentiments echo more strongly than ‘anti- Xi’ sentiments in China. His military expansion and built up has also been projected as ‘Making China strongest ever’ as a lead over other predecessors since Mao’s era. In fact, Xi has pushed his country to a state where there is only one leader and rest everyone else is a worker.
Future of China under Over-ambitious Xi
CPC’s 20th Congress applauding Hong Kong’s transition from “chaos to governance” and adding “opposing and containing Taiwan independence” to its constitution convinces Xi that his aggressive posture has paid him well and might continue to serve his interest well. His reiteration that PLA would be a world class army by centenary 2027 with a strong system of strategic deterrence and new domain forces indicates growth of strategic arsenal to improve deterrence against US led West.  The Chinese dream of “Rejuvenation” and Xi Jinping’s goal of a “Prosperous Developed Society” with a “War Winning Modern PLA” by 2049 could have been achieved if he had not gone into overdrive with his aggressiveness, opening multiple fronts to oust the US as the world’s superpower by unfairly exploiting pandemic.
In accordance with Xi’s plan for ‘Making China Great Again’, China accelerated its incremental encroachment strategy in its peripheral regions. This gave him the confidence to aggressively use the pandemic to accomplish all of his goals ahead of schedule without having the means to defend its international shipping outside of its eastern seaboard. Although the US did not respond to his fire power demonstration around Taiwan during Nancy Pelosi’s visit, China is still affected by restrictions on semiconductor chips, microprocessors, and other trade restrictions.
With the kind of global anger he has generated against his regime in last few years, the world has realised the need for diversification of global factory, along with economic distancing from China. Xi realises it, is evident from his statement  “China cannot develop without the world, and the world also needs China,”. Xi appears to be advocating for capacity building to fight against economic coercion of West and desire for alternate financial system. Notwithstanding above, Xi has done well for himself, but pushed his country on a collision path with democracies, which might lead to its decline unless Chinese people wake up and shake up CPC to protect their dreams.
How does it Affect India?
In CPC’s 20th Congress “Xi Jinping Thought on Strengthening the Military” was also added to the party’s constitution, making it the only leader with military term named after him in the constitution. Xi Jinping’s pitch for shaping security posture deterring and managing conflicts and winning local wars impact India and Taiwan directly. His attempt to stir up nationalism out of the Ladakh standoff was confirmed by the film about the Galwan episode being shown to all delegates, which appears to have helped him calm down domestic rage. The overplaying of the Taiwan problem follows the same logic. He will be inspired to maintain a tough posture on both fronts as a result.
From Indian perspective, notwithstanding Xi Jinping’s rhetoric, this is the time when Beijing is under maximum external and internal pressure since last few decades. If Beijing continues with its arrogance, it will invite further pressure. India should push for border settlement or demarcation of LAC now, as the political cost of resolving the border/LAC may be lesser than maintaining an active front with India for China. India should not settle down with token disengagement, because unless the LAC is demarcated the standoffs will continue. For the time being India should not blink at the borders and continue capacity building.
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