Saturday, September 18, 2010

Accomodating hubris

The Hindu : Opinion / Lead : South Asia beckons China
As a senior Indian official put it “They [the Chinese] are a business-like people and they won't invest in that kind of area like that.”
I guess, our Nehruvian socialists still can't distinguish between economic sense and political sense. Reminds me of another famous exchange involving our first prime minister:
Nehru commented that "Not a blade of grass grows in Aksai Chin", attempting to explain that Aksai Chin was a barren, inhospitable land and the nation had lost little by its occupation by China. Tyagi retorted, pointing to his bald head: "Nothing grows here ..should it be cut off or given away to somebody else?".
The following paragraph illustrates why M.K.Bhadrakumar gets space in this Chinese daily.
In short, the rise in China's influence in the region can lead to peace and regional stability provided we eschew outdated notions of “sphere of influence.” On the contrary, a struggle will inevitably ensue if India chooses to contest China's growing influence since the quintessence of that choice will be that India is prepared to sacrifice peace and stability in the region in its quest for regional primacy. Our South Asian neighbours will only see our choice as a quest for regional hegemony and they cannot be expected to accommodate hubris.
A "sphere of influence" is a fairly generic concept. I dont quite understand when M.K.Bhadrakumar calls it an outdated concept. I wonder what has replaced it: a "cube of influence", may be?
It is ridiculous for M.K.Bhadrakumar to say that China's rise in influence can lead to peace and stability whereas India's can lead to conflict. To associate China's ambitions with peace and stability and India's ambitions with regional primacy and hegemony is playing mischief with words. It is preposterous for M.K.Bhadrakumar to suggest that India must accommodate hubris so that China's "peaceful" rise continues.

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