06 Aug 2022  |   05:09am IST

China continues expansionist attitude

The visit of US Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan recently became a flashpoint, which emboldened China yet another time, to flex its muscle and show the world their military power.

The “precision missile drill” near Taiwan soon after the visit of Pelosi is one such example of Chinese assertion. In fact, the Chinese military on Thursday launched a four-day war game and held “precision missile strikes” in the Taiwan Strait in retaliation to Pelosi's landmark and successful Taiwan visit, despite Chinese stern warning. The United States of America has been categorically supporting the “Taiwan independence.”

The drills tested the rocket forces' capabilities to conduct precision attacks and area-denial tasks, Senior Colonel Shi Yi, a spokesman for the PLA Eastern Theatre Command said. The Rocket Force is a new wing of the Chinese military, which was created a few years ago under the reforms launched by President Xi Jinping to exclusively deal with missile systems.

With the Chinese economy being the second largest in the world in terms of Nominal GDP and the largest in terms of Purchasing Power Parity (PPP), China targets smaller nations that are suffering from economical losses and brings in many promises to these countries in name of development and funds many infrastructure projects to them. There are more than 30 Chinese companies on Fortune 500 list, most of these companies are state-funded. China has transformed itself from being a poverty-ridden country to a country with three trillion dollar foreign reserves which is the largest in the world.

Branded as “expansionist nation” by many nations across the world, China find opportunity in every crises. China targets strategic areas in these countries and offer them to transform their strategic areas into a trading hub. Poor countries fall in trap of Chinese false promises and eventually they lose out their territory to China for repaying their loans. Examples before us are the countries like Sri Lanka, Maldives, Laos, Australia, Angola, Greece, Djibouti, Kenya, etc., which are already under China’s debt trap. They have lost their strategic areas in the Chinese hand. Like the Hambantota port of Sri Lanka, the National Power grid of Laos, a military base in Djibouti and many other are such examples of the Chinese debt trap.

In fact, countries with lesser economic resources find it easier to take loans from China as the Chinese loan conditions are soft as compared to the terms and conditions of World Bank and IMF loans and ultimately fall in this trap. 

Also, according to the Global firepower index, the Chinese military is the third strongest in the world. Countries that do not fall prey to the Chinese debt trap, China attempts to threaten their sovereignty by using its military. Not too long ago the Chinese incursion in Galwan Valley at the India-China borders was retaliated by India forcefully and hence, stopping Chinese move to expand its territory.  

China is continuously increasing its claim by expanding its territory in the South China Sea and East China Sea and is continuously advocating that both seas belong to the Chinese territory. Countries that oppose China’s claim get threaten by the Chinese military. The heat in area in recent times has escalated and has raised many eyebrows across the globe. 

Countries like Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Vietnam, Brunei, etc., are also facing a military threat from China. Many instances are recorded, where the Chinese military has bullied the Navy of these countries and also has sunk many fisherman’s boat. Taiwan, which proclaims itself as an independent and sovereign country is also facing the continuous threat of invasion by the Chinese military. 

With such movements, and hostile neighbour like Pakistan siding with China, it becomes extremely difficult for India to take a stand. In fact, the woes for India has further intensified as its long time “friendly nation”, Russia backed China’s warning to the visit of Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan openly. The back channel diplomatic talks are happening but nations in and around China are “worried” by China’s expansionist attitude.  

IDhar UDHAR

IDHAR UDHAR