Pamu: Hey Viru, how are you doing?
Vir: I am going great. What about you?
Pamu: I am also doing great.
Vir: That’s good. So what do you want to discuss today?
Pamu: Today I want to discuss the ongoing Russia-Ukrainian conflict.
Vir: What? Russia-Ukraine conflict…We have already discussed so much about that ongoing conflict.
Pamu: Yes, we have discussed. But today I want to bring India into the picture.
Vir: India?? But, isn’t India already in the picture? Many countries specifically the western bloc led by the USA are asking India to take a more clear and critical stand on Russia.
Pamu: Yes India has a major role to play in this war. But this is not what I want to talk about. This time I want to discuss something different.
Vir: Different ha? What is that you want to discuss about India beyond this war?
Pamu:I feel that, this war has so much relation with the geopolitical and geostrategic situation where India stands.
Vir: Ok….. please tell me that. How do you relate the current war and India’s security scenario?
Pamu: Look now the war is between Russia and Ukraine. Here, what the western bloc led by the USA is doing?
Vir: Tell me…What are they doing?
Pamu: Rather than pushing both countries to sit at the table and reach a peace deal by means of diplomacy, there seems efforts from the western side to supply weapons to Ukraine. It is exacerbating the conflict.
Vir: But that is not happening only in the case of Ukraine. Russia is also being supported by several other countries though indirectly. So the onus is on both sides. All the countries who are supporting any side in the war are to blame for the continuance of the war.
Pamu: Yes that is right. But I believe that it is in the interest of humanity if powerful nations like the USA, China and others should push for peace rather than supporting war efforts.
Vir: Yes that should happen in the ideal situation. But, unfortunately, we are living in a world dominated by power politics, where power reigns supreme. Nations seek power to promote national interest and secure their dominance.
Pamu: Ha… true. I want to bring India here, in context of ongoing war in Eurasia region.
Look, in this war what I can say is that the USA’s policy of Buck Passing is at play and it is at its best.
Vir: Ha you can say that. As per the policy of buck-passing, the nation tries to shift its burden to another stakeholder, who will manage it for the country who have passed it. Here, the country provides help to a weaker country like, in the case of the Russia-Ukraine war, the USA is supporting
Ukraine with cash and weapons.
Pamu: Yes that is what I am talking about. By supporting weak countries, both countries will fight and destroy each other. Hence, the challenge to the USA’s superpower status will be nipped in the bud itself. It will reduce the geostrategic burden as well as challenge to the USA.
Vir: Ha you are right. The USA mostly supports weaker power, so that weaker power also destroys itself in the process and does not pose any threat to the superpower.
Pamu: Yes that is the modus operandi of the USA. Don’t you think that this tendency may be very dangerous for India?
Vir: Look, as a superpower it is natural for it, to maintain the status quo and check the rise of any other superpower, which threatens the dominance of superpower. Hence, in geopolitics that is common. But for India that is dangerous.
Pamu: Yes. Can you guess, that how it is dangerous for India?
Vir: It is obvious. There is no need to guess.
Pamu: Then tell me. Let me see whether I am right or not.
Vir: China…who else can it be?
There is a high probability of conventional war between India and China, particularly related to border disputes.
Pamu: Exactly that is what I think will give the USA the chance to check China’s rise.
Vir: And in the process, the USA will pass the buck or burden on India’s shoulder. In that USA will support India to destroy China or defend itself. It will also keep on pushing for war rather than calling for peace. It will happen exactly the way it is happening in the Ukraine.
Pamu: Ha that is what I am concerned about.
Vir:And also if China keeps on being aggressive with India with utter neglect of India’s territorial integrity then war is likely to happen. India cannot just cede its territory to China, regardless of the asymmetry that is prevalent in the military and economic power of India and China.
Pamu: India will not do that without a fight. Here the USA will play the role and provide support to India.
Vir: Ha…. but that support will not be to defend India but to destroy potential challenges to USA’s dominance from China and a lesser extent from India.
Pamu: Exactly. So what do you think should be done to avoid that situation?
Vir: Ideally, India and China should diplomatically resolve all the disputes most prominent being the border dispute. If the disputes are resolved then there is less probability or even zero chances of war. And that will also lead us to the so-called Asian Century.
But the chances of solving such disputes using diplomacy considering the power gap seem less. Yet I hope that may happen.
Pamu: Hmmm… China now has no incentive to solve disputes. It can afford to delay as it has all the power now to do so.
Vir: Or otherwise war is inevitable and India will have to accept aid from the USA and other countries to defend itself. That situation will be dangerous both for India as well as China.
Pamu: Ha… so what should be done?
Vir: I believe the way India should follow is obvious.
Pamu: Really? Is there any way?
Vir: India should reduce power asymmetry by promoting its economic and military power. That will push China to resolve the dispute. And hopefully will reduce the chances of war.
Pamu: Ha that can happen. Powerful India is the best defense against any aggression, especially against China.
Vir: Yes…I hope that India will become a great power and with it resolve the disputes from the position of strength rather than acting under pressure from other powers.
Pamu: Yes… I hope the same.
Pamu: Hey Viru, how are you doing?