Skip to main content

Seeking to contain China? US actions towards India 'aren’t motivated' by shared values

By Shaun Narine* 

Canada’s deepening divide with India following its accusation that the Indian government was responsible for the murder of Canadian citizen Hardeep Singh Nijjar has revealed a cynical truth: the West’s interest in democracy and rules-based international order is largely empty rhetoric.
Canada’s western allies have offered some support in its confrontation with India. However, this support is extremely limited. India is too important to American efforts to contain China.
India understands this and is taking full advantage of its position in this ongoing geopolitical chess game by getting what it can from the West while keeping a clear focus on its own interests.
India is a regional rival of China. It may have passed China as the world’s most populous country and is, by purchasing power parity, the world’s third largest economy.
The United States is trying to redirect global resources and supply chains from China to India. Supposedly, India is “safe” because it shares “democratic values” with the West.

Modi regime

However, India’s so-called liberal democracy has been severely damaged by the Hindu-supremacist policies of the Narendra Modi regime.
In modern India, religious minorities, especially Muslims, are regularly victims of mob violence, including lynching and sexual assault.
A rabid nationalist media pumps up government policies. Critical journalists are brutalized and silenced. The judiciary and parliament have been cowed.
Indian author Arundhati Roy argues that India is well on its way to becoming a fully fascist state. Roy was recently charged by the Modi regime for supposedly “provocative” statements she made in 2010.
The western world knows all of this, but its actions towards India aren’t motivated by “shared values.” The West, led by the U.S., is driven only by the desire to contain China.
India has rejected Canada’s accusations, but has also flagged western hypocrisy. Indian MP Shashi Tharoor has alleged the U.S. and Israel are the “two foremost practitioners of extra-territorial assassinations in the past 25 years.” American drone warfare has killed thousands of people the U.S. accuses of terrorism and thousands of innocent bystanders in the Global South.
India may be following the West’s lead, but on a much smaller scale. Also, it allegedly acted in a western state, which seemingly expect to be exempt from the kind of violence they have unleashed on the Global South.

Not an American pawn

India is happy to accept western economic, military and technological support to help it close its enormous gaps in wealth, infrastructure and overall development with China. The West, meantime, needs India to maintain its global domination.
But India has no more interest in perpetuating western dominance of the global system than China does. It is not an American pawn.
India is pursuing its own interests, as its continuing relationship with Russia indicates.
India and China have a major border dispute and are militarily at odds. They view each other with mutual suspicion and, often, contempt.
Arundhati Roy argues that India is well on way to becoming fully fascist state. Western world knows this
But they understand that they will be neighbours forever and their relationship can be mutually beneficial if they can find diplomatic resolutions to their conflicts. This may be easier said than done, but the two countries have improved relations in the past and enjoy a growing economic relationship today.
Most Indians accept that making an active enemy of China is not in India’s best interests.
The more aggressive the U.S. becomes towards China, the more leverage it gives to India to use against both the Americans and the Chinese. India can extract benefits from the U.S.; simultaneously, American aggression provides China with incentives to improve its relations with India.

Choosing a side

But there is a point — perhaps fast approaching — at which regional states will feel forced to make a choice between China or the U.S. There’s a limit to how far both sides can be played off against the other.
Tensions between India and China benefit U.S. interests. If India and China resolve their differences and choose to work together — or, at least, not to work against each other — it would complicate those interests. As unlikely as this may seem now, harmonious relations between China and India are a real long-term possibility.
India is far from posing a threat to American power the way China is now. Nonetheless, if the U.S. succeeds in elevating India at China’s expense, it will eventually have to contend with challenges from India. It’s already clear that India doesn’t see itself as a western subordinate and has its own regional aspirations.
India’s alleged murder of a Canadian citizen may be a taste of how India will handle its relations with the West as it rises in power. India will be demanding privileges the West extends to itself and its allies, for whom “rules-based international order” is a meaningless facade.
Canada has asked India to co-operate in its investigation of Nijjar’s murder. The investigation will probably go nowhere and be quietly buried. There are suspicions that India may be threatening other Sikh activists and may have committed another murder in the U.K.
India has recently eased some visa restrictions on Canadians even as it has expelled 41 Canadian diplomats, threatening to revoke their diplomatic immunity.
India will walk away untouched from its spat with Canada. It is too important to western strategies against China. But India has its own game to play and that does not necessarily accord with what the West wants.
---
*Professor of International Relations and Political Science, St. Thomas University (Canada). Source: The Conversation

Comments

Anonymous said…
What's սp to aⅼl, since I am іn fact eager ᧐f
reading thіs webpage'ѕ post to be updated daily.
Ιt carries fastidious informаtion.
Ediror said…
Pls follow us on X (Twitter) @counterviewnet

TRENDING

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

BSF should take full responsibility for death of 4 kids in West Bengal: Rights defender

By Kirity Roy*  One is deeply disturbed and appalled by the callous trench-digging by BSF in Chetnagachh village under Daspara Gram Panchayat, Chopra, North Dinajpur District, West Bengal that has claimed the lives of four children. Along the entire stretch of Indo-Bangladesh border of West Bengal instead of guarding the actual border delineated by the international border pillars, BSF builds fences and digs trenches well inside the Indian territory, passing through villages and encroaching on private lands, often without due clearance or consent. 

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

How GMOs would destroy non-GMO crops: Aruna Rodrigues' key submissions in SC

Counterview Desk The introduction of Bt and HT crops will harm the health of 1 billion Indians and their animals, believes Aruna Rodrigues, who has made some 60 submissions to the Supreme Court (SC) during the last 20 years. As lead petitioner who filed Public Interest Litigation in 2005, during a spate of intense hearings, which ended on 18 January 2024, she fought in the Apex Court to prevent the commercialization of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in Indian agriculture. 

Social justice day amidst 'official neglect' of salt pan workers in Little Rann of Kutch

By Prerana Pamkar*  In India’s struggle for Independence, the Salt Satyagraha stands as a landmark movement and a powerful symbol of nonviolent resistance. Led by Mahatma Gandhi, countless determined citizens walked from Sabarmati Ashram to Dandi in Gujarat. However, the Gujarat which witnessed the power of the common Indian during the freedom struggle is now in the throes of another significant movement: this time it is seeking to free salt pan workers from untenable working conditions in the Little Rann of Kutch (LRK).

Jallianwala massacre: Why Indian govt hasn't ever officially sought apology from UK

By Manjari Chatterjee Miller*  The king of the Netherlands, Willem-Alexander, apologized in July 2023 for his ancestors’ role in the colonial slave trade. He is not alone in expressing remorse for past wrongs. In 2021, France returned 26 works of art seized by French colonial soldiers in Africa – the largest restitution France has ever made to a former colony. In the same year, Germany officially apologized for its 1904-08 genocide of the Herero and Nama people of Namibia and agreed to fund reconstruction and development projects in Namibia. .

Corporatizing Indian agriculture 'to enhance' farmer efficiency, market competitiveness

By Shashank Shukla*  Today, amidst the ongoing farmers' protest, one of the key demands raised is for India to withdraw from the World Trade Organization (WTO). Let us delve into the feasibility of such a move and explore its historical context within India's globalization trajectory.

Interpreting UAPA bail provisions: Is Supreme Court setting the clock back?

By Kavita Srivastava*, Dr V Suresh** The Supreme Court in its ruling on 7th February, 2024 in   `Gurvinder Singh v State of Punjab’ held that its own well-developed jurisprudence that "Bail is the rule and jail the exception" will not apply to those charged under the UAPA.

A 'distorted narrative' of Indian politics: Congress failing to look beyond LS polls

By Prem Singh*  About 15 days ago, I told a senior journalist friend that there are not even two   months left for the Lok Sabha elections, Rahul Gandhi is roaming around on a delectation (tafreeh). The friend probably found my comment exasperating and replied that he is not on a delectation trip. The conversation between us on this topic ended there. 

Livelihood issues return to national agenda ahead of LS polls: SKM on Bharat Bandh

Counterview Desk  Top farmers' network, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) has claimed big success of Grameen Bharat Bandh and industrial /sectoral strikes, stating, the “struggle reflected anger of farmers, workers and rural people across India”, adding, the move on February 16 succeeded in bringing back peoples’ livelihood issues in the national agenda just ahead of the general election to the Lok Sabha.