According to the latest news coming from the West reports of a skirmish in recent days along the two nuclear powers’ shared border. This was months after a deadly melee erupted in another contested region some 100 miles away. This was followed by a continuous blame game between Indid and China which is reasoned to initiate the latest clash.
According to the U.S., Indian forces are believed to have prevented any loss of ground. They also spoke on the condition of anonymity, following the latest faceoff, which Indian and Chinese officials revealed early Monday took place at the southern end of the Pangong Tso Lake. The subject of the topic is a remote high region in the Himalayas which is believed to fall in India’s territory.
The Indian troops were better prepared to respond to the Chinese provocation, the U.S. believes, after bolstering their presence in northern India following the deadly June clash in the Galwan River Valley region that resulted in at least 20 Indian deaths and as many as 35 Chinese casualties. The assessment does not conclude that Chinese forces were the first to act provocatively in this case, but the U.S. has chosen to support India’s side because of Beijing’s past provocative behavior.
Analysts and intelligent officers all stand baffled about the timing of the latest clash. This has come within a short span of time China seeks to cool tensions – or has given the appearance it wishes to do so – and improve ties with India amid fears the latest violence has pushed New Delhi into closer cooperation with the U.S.
A group known as “The Quad” ha sbeen prepared month for a summit that Indian sources say will likely result in a new intelligence-sharing arrangement among the major powers where Indian officials are expected to virtually meet with their counterparts from the U.S., Japan and Australia sometime later this month.
The State Department has declined to comment on-record. A spokesperson speaking on the condition of anonymity said the latest skirmish serves as the latest example of “a clear pattern of Beijing acting increasingly aggressively, both domestically and abroad.”
“The only way to stop these provocations is by standing up to Beijing,” the spokesperson said. “From the Taiwan Strait to Xinjiang, from the South China Sea to the Himalayas, from cyberspace to international organizations, we are dealing with a Chinese Communist Party that seeks to repress its own people and bully its neighbors.”
Experts and analysts are of the opinion that Chinese have stood astonished after the unanticipated extent to which the June land-grab has enraged the Indian people, causing reverberations that left the central government in New Delhi with no choice but to escalate its response – Ban of Chinese apps from phones in India being the most talked about.
Since then, Chinese officials have tried to repair the damage. At least two tracks of talks between India and China have emerged specifically designed to ease border tensions in recent weeks, including one between brigade-level commanders scheduled to take place Tuesday. Foreign Minister Wang Yi led a five-nation tour through Europe last week in an attempt to soothe tensions, particularly the increasing skepticism of using Chinese telecom giant Huawei to help build 5G networks. His comments were widely seen as an attempt to avoid Chinese-Indian border clashes from defining the two countries’ relations – at least from a European perspective – and emphasizing the potential for greater cooperation.
According to conclusions drawn by the U.S.intelligence assessment Chinese troops this time were building encampments in contested space – a tactic both sides have employed to gain a foothold they can later expand into infrastructure to support broader operations in the future. Sheena Greitens, associate professor at the University of Texas at Austin’s LBJ School of Public Affairs has said “One effect of the standoff has been to add a sense of urgency to efforts to strengthen U.S.-India ties, especially in terms of defense cooperation.” Highlighting one of the major outcomes of the attack.