14 Nov 2017/ Tuesday.   

Developments that do not portend well for Xi’s china

Trump’s Afghan policy and Quad

Trump’s Afghan policy and the declaration of Quad almost sandwiched Xi Jinping’s historical elevation during 19th Congress,which was aimed to propel him in the league of the PRC’s founder Mao Zedong. Both these masterstrokes by Trump has immensely rattled the assertive China. US decision to cut down military aid in case of Pakistan continuing its support to terrorists, will have serious repercussion for the security of CPEC. Major portion of the US aid was reportedly diverted by Pakistan as its share for the protection of CPEC, in garb of fighting terror. In absence of the aid Pakistan will now have to finance the security of the corridor from its hard to come by integral resources. Restive regions of Baluchistan and POK pose a major security risk towards the success of the CPEC and China has voiced its concern many times.

Whereas, on one hand the Afghan policy has the undertones of forcing Pakistan to limit its expenditure on security of CPEC, the formidable alliance- Quad, is aimed to make Xi look weakand keep expansionist China under check.

In a strategic move, four large democracies of the world forged an alliance to keep ambitions of Anti Status Quo China, under check. These countries are also dominant business partners and therefore,canwield a sizeable economic muscle over China to not to allow it a free run violating well established world order. China has a flourishing trade with all four of these countries, often with huge surpluses and that can come under pressure if all four countries collectively put pressure on China to balance out the trade.

The possibility of Quad’s transition into a grand military alliance in face of belligerent China, can effectively upset China’s influence in the Indo-Pacific region.

India Enters Bigger Orbit

The terminology “Indo-Pacific” has been commonly referred to by some foreign policy experts of India, Indonesia and Australia but recently its use by Trump and his Secretary of State,Rex Tillerson, indicated a marked shift in policy.

During his first presidential trip to Asia, Donald Trump seems to have developedan affinity for the phrase- “Indo Pacific,” that gives some insight into how the US views the region in backdrop of India emerging as a dominant power.Throughout his tour of five countries, President Trump made a point of labeling the region the “Indo-Pacific.” Not “Asia.” And also,not the more common “Asia-Pacific,” which was what predecessor Barack Obama mostly used.

“India is a natural ally of the United States, because of the shared commitment to democracy and to counter terrorism, and because the region is so vital to the US security”.

Above comments from Shah, the highest-ranking Indian-American ever in the White House press wing,came hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump held their second bilateral meeting in Manila on the sidelines of the ASEAN Summit. He goes on to say that, two countries are going to have a “strong relationship and it’s going to get stronger” under Trump. US-India relationship should stand on its own leg and “not be contingent” on any other relationship.

The focus of Indo Pacific alliance would be to strive for a region, where independent nations could “thrive in freedom and peace” and all states “play by the rules.” Earlier President Trump had warned China to abide by established world order. In other words, this development is in India’s favour,with writing on the wall that emerging new world order demands a bigger role from India. This is a good opportunity for India to effectively counter the Chinese Strategy of “String of Pearls”.

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