Antony J. Blinken, Secretary of State of the United States of America, Visits India

Finn Schulz

Director, Center for Culture & Global Studies

Berlin Chair, Berlin, Germany


E-mail: info@globalculturz.org


The USA wants India to play a bigger role in Asia. To contain Chinese exapansion in its neighborhoods-South China Sea, Senkaku Islands (Japan) and various parts of India and elsewhere in world, a new alliance-Quad-was formed and made active during recent years. This alliance of four countries- is annouced as a non-military, civil alliance but it seems to target military, economic, and debt-developmental expansions by Chinese Government. Quad has clearly asserted to move ahead with restoration of democratic values all across the world and work for human rights in Hong Kong and other parts of China including Tibet. At presernt, the nations under Quad have pledged to contain Covid-19 pandemic and aimed to put the global economy on path. 

       In a joint press meet Indian External Affairs Minister-Mr. S.Jaishankar Says, ‘Whether it is responding to the COVID challenge, cooperating on defense and security, encouraging trade and investment, addressing climate change, or expanding education innovation, I can say truly that there is much that has happened in 2021’. He clearly indicated security and defence cooperations, the key issue, which is downplayed in formal meetings. Chinese ambition to become a global power is obvious; but treating India as an enemy nation and creating nuisence in its neighborhood is major concern to achive this goal. Democratic forces are worried and cautious about the Chinese ‘Intentions’ and always keep an eye on its activities. The general global opinion is that China adopts ‘unfair’ means to ensure her winability and gain economic profits. It supplies poor quality products to under developed countries, allows cyber attacks and hackings, constructs illegal infrastuctures, traps poorer nations in debts, supports and saves terror groups and army coup, does not follow international courts orders and crushes human rights with in China with brutal force. The western nations, particularly the US leads such campaigns against China and a wider general global perception is against China. Recently, China, created hurdules in a fair enuiry of Corona virus spread. A common sense asks, is it just a coincidence, that the location of original spread and establishment of premier Chinese virology lab is the same. If is mere a coincidence, it should be called ‘wonderful’.  



The secratary of the State addressed the press in a personlised manner, which is rare for US ooficilas, he said,‘There are few relationships in the world that are more vital than the one between the United States and India. We are two of the world’s leading democracies, and our diversity fuels our national strength. We are two of the world’s largest economies powered by the innovative spirit of our people. At a time of rising temperatures and sea levels, we – two of the world’s largest carbon emitters – are on the front lines of the climate crisis and the leading edge of a new green economy. Our countries know firsthand the lethal consequences of climate change.

And the Indian and American people are united by millions of family ties stretching back generations and by shared values and shared aspirations. Together, the actions of – that India and the United States take are shaping the 21st century and beyond.’


It was a touching speech for Indian people. Biden administration has incorporated a large number of Indian Diaspora and has given them key responsibilities. Need not to mention, Kamla Harris, the Vice-President. The QUAD is progressing and will shape the Asian development. It’s time for China to rethink about its role in maintaing global order.


QUAD: Beyond China with New Agenda

Source:Japantimes.co.jp


Paul Wilson

CCGS, Sydney Chair (Australia)

Email: info@globalculturz.org



Quad-a group of four nations-is setting new agenda. The idea of Quad or ‘Security Diamond’ was propounded by the former Japanese Prime Minister-Abe Shinzo in 2007 during his state visit to India. It was hibernation since then and no ‘active’ steps were taken to groom the group. The initial focus was to ensure free Indo-Pacific navigation and contain Chinese aggression in the region. Now, the group of the US, India, Japan and Australia-have come up with new agenda to control the spread of Covid-19 virus, boost global vaccination and improve economic growth. However the real issue, though hidden, is to check and balance Chinese expansionism in Indo-Pacific, South and East China Sea.

 

The Sprit of the Quad is presented in recently held summit, online. It seems, the Quad countries have realized the need to broaden the agenda and carry out more welfare schemes. Just opposing China have been found ‘ineffective’ in contemporary global scenario. “We bring diverse perspectives and are united in a shared vision for the free and open Indo-Pacific. We strive for a region that is free, open, inclusive, healthy, anchored by democratic values, and unconstrained by coercion” states the document supplied by the White House. It is also taking up the vaccination. “China, in a reference to the Quad coalition comprising India, United States, Australia and Japan, on Monday said that certain countries were keen to exaggerate the threat posed by Beijing in order to create discord in the Indo-Pacific region” writes scroll.in. 


Quad has created worries in Chinese administration. It has claimed a larger part in South China Sea, despite global concerns and International Court of Justice ruled against this occupation and termed it ‘illegal’. There were several sanctions and diplomatic altercations between the US and China in the last few years. The relationship between Australia and China touched low during Pandemic period of coronavirus. Even, Japanese water boundaries, particularly near Senkaku Islands were violated by Chinese naval ships on many occasions. Indian Army, too, has seen longer standoffs with Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) at different boarder points. These emerging situations in Asia-pacific compelled the Quad Nations to come together and address the security cause, collectively. This time, though, it has been kept in background and other issues like covid vaccination and climate change have been floated on the table. 


Security analyst, sometimes, call this alliance as ‘Asian NATO’. Some of them also said that -this the beginning of the new cold-war. China is showing her mighty presence across the globe by initiating One Belt One Road (OBOR) project. Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) under the influence of China providing a parallel economic and development platform and offering better finance facilities than the US controlled International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. An economic and security demarkation is quite visible at global scenario. Will Quad be able to contain Chinese aggression and expansionism? There are some indicators and dynamic activities. We have to observe them closely.

Jailing Joshua: Hong Kong

Joshua Wong: Jailed Activist

Finn Schulz

CCGS,Vaduz, Liechtenstein

info@globalculturz.org





 

Democratic freedom has become a bone of contention in Hong Kong. A large number of young people, particularly students, were continuously protesting on the streets since last year to demand better freedom and save the democracy in the territory. China is willing to control it and has introduced several laws to crush the human rights and freedom of the citizens. Hong Kong was brought under Chinese administration with a pledge of ‘one country two systems’ from the Britishers. This is no more honored and mainland China is eager to put more pressure and intervention, though indirectly, on Hong Kong. Young generation of Hong Kong wishes to enjoy freedom of speech and open democracy. To ensure it, several agitations were organized which ha:mpered the daily administration and activity  of  Hong Kong. China is in practice of jailing the human rights and pro-democratic activists. The global community is watching and recorded its dissent on several counts. Joshua and Agnes Chow are just 24 and 23 years old and leading the movement. It is difficult to say, right now, whether jailing them will serve the purpose of China or not.  Another friend, Ivam Lam, 26 also sentenced. All three were key figures since the beginning the protest as an umbrella movement. Important reactions came from Dominic Raab, Britain’s foreign minister:

“Prosecution decisions must be fair and impartial, and the rights and freedoms of people in Hong Kong must be upheld.”

A group, Demosisto, was form to assert the cause of freedom of speech and national security law imposed by mainland China.


Chinese aspiration of expansionism, controlling the inner folks like Uighur and Hong Kongers, occupying the South China Sea by illegitimate constructions and continuous military altercations with Taiwan, India, Japan and other neighboring countries is pushing the world again towards two-polar situations. The US, EU and UK, Japan, India Israel and Australia seems to be on the opposite side of China, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia. Though this is not very clear demarcation but slowly these poles are getting shape. However the main player will be the neutral countries like Indonesia, Vietnam, Brazil and many other. Both poles are dependent on these countries for their economic stability and prosperity. As the new data from different Think Tanks are coming up, China will surpass the US economy in 2028 five years ahead than predicted earlier.    

This will naturally dictate the activities inside Chinese territories including Hong Kong. China is well focussed on its economy and she is using this richness towards political and security polarization by floating infrastructural projects and lending money in poorer nations. 

In recent jailing Zhang Zhan,37, a citizen journalist and lawyer reached Wuhan from Shanghai, in February, 2020. She began to show the crowded hospitals and severe conditions of the streets of the city through online media. In November last year a trial was done against her for “false information through text, video and other media through WeChat, Twitter and YouTube”. She has been sentenced four years in prison.

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Free and Open Indo-Pacific: Suga


    Shio Motodate

Researcher, Hokkaido University

Hokkaido, Japan

E-mail: info@globalculturz.org

 Rently, the new PM of Japan, Suga Yoshihide is supposed to move ahead with the policies adopted by former PM Abe Shinzo. During his first foreign visit to Vietnam and Indonesia he pledged for free Indo-Pacific region. In 2012 former PM Abe Shinzo also visited these two countries after taking oath to the office. Indonesia and Vietnam play an important role in Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN). Amid Chinese maritime activities in South China Sea, this visit of Suga is as a considered diplomatic strategy to check the expansionism, an ideology adopted by the present government of China to dominate the neighboring countries and controlling the navigation. 

Vietnam is Chairing the current ASEAN bloc of ten countries and Indonesia was vocal to ensure the free Indo-Pacific movement despite potential pressure from Beging. In the recent years US military and Chinese Forces seen several face-off in South China sea and else where. This visit will serve the purpose of Japan-US security and economic alliance.

In the meanwhile Japanese travel and tour industry has suffered severely due to global lockdown hampering the economic growth. The leaders discussed to open the travel and boost the business activities. Several auto corporations have their settlements in Indonesia and need an instant relief. Suga’s journey helped to the Vietnamese economic development as well. The Bangkok Times stated, “Vietnam's growth potential and low-cost labour supply continues to curry favor among Japanese companies, which regard the country as the most promising place in Asia to invest in 2020. Previously, Japan gave ¥200 million (59.7 million baht) in aid to help Vietnam fight the pandemic.” Vietnam and Japan both are willing to play a vital role in maintaining security and economic stability in ASEAN region. Free and open Indo-Pacific was the key agenda during his visit and Suga assured for the same.

China is in confrontations with most of her neighbors including India and Japan. After loosing the case in International Court of Justice (ICJ) there no stoppage of its ‘illegal’ activities in South China sea, which is a matter grave concern for global community and peace loving nations. Indian Prime Minister Modi, on many occasions, condemned the idea of expansionism, without citing China directly. The same suit is followed by Mr. Suga and outgoing US president Mr. Trump. 

Suga Yoshihide’s visit is also termed as an act of balancing. Indonesia is the only member of G-20 from the region and Vietnam is continuing his economic growth. These two countries can help and protect the interest of Japan in particular and Japanese allies in general. It seems, to contain China, in South China sea is primary purpose of the visit but moving ahead with business is also equally important in the current prevailing situation of pandemic Covid-19. ASEAN and Japan are interdependent on each other in context of economy and security. Developing a personal relation with Indonesian skipper Joko Widodo will serve this purpose.

Chinese Expansionism in Nepal

Credit : Tibet.net 

Shiho Suzuki

Socio-Cultural Department

Fukuoka University, Fukuoka (Japan)

Email: info@globalculturz.org


Recently China entered in Nepal. A small part of Nepalese territory is occupied by Chinese Peoples’ Liberation Army (PLA). Ambitious China is not sparing any one in its neighbor. Almost 17 countries have some sort of territorial dispute with China. The major risks are with Japan, Taiwan and India. The US, though not a neighbor is actively trying to control Chinese interference in South China Sea. There are several recent incidents of face off between Taiwan, India and Japan. The desperation to become global leader, Chinese government, taking aggressive steps to show its supremacy in regional area and global platforms. Nepalese area is the new addition to this.


Nepal, as we all know, culturally and geographically more connected to India. The present government of Nepal, though, wishes to join the Chinese camp for its economic empowerment. It can be easily observed that Chinese economic success have lured many small nations and their governments. Nepal is recent one which is falling pray to it. Loans and debts avail by these nations have become a business of loss and Pakistan, a neighboring state of India and China, is almost ‘sold out’ to Chinese administration. Nepal may be the next. Unlike Pakistan, Nepal will be more prone to Chinese expansionism as they share a larger international boarder line. Nepal and India-both governments- underplayed Chinese occupation in their territories. The reason seems to be avoiding domestic criticism. However these issues are now floating well on the streets in India and Nepal. 


Media reports are saying, ‘Nepal and China are engaged in a boundary row in Humla after the Chinese side allegedly built 11 buildings in a remote part of the district that Nepal claims as its own territory’. China has adopted an aggressive infra development policy near boarder areas. Constructions in Humla are part of that policy. One of the Nepali officers-Bishnu Tamang-visited the disputed area and submitted his observations. He said, “The Chinese side claimed that the area where the houses are built falls within the Chinese territory.” Another media report say, ‘China has encroached at least 28 hectares of Nepali land spread across four districts of Humla, Rasuwa, Sankhuwasabha and Sindhupalchok.’ In a press statement Chinese ambassador to Nepal denied any illegal occupation of Nepalese land. Nepal in no way is capable of retaliation. In recent years its relations with India worsened. The communist forces in Nepal advocate stronger ties with China and create troubles to Indian sympathizer. In this scenario China has an advantage to move in slowly and silently into Nepal. 

The Nepal governments casual attitude towards the Chinese expansionism is the bell of warning. Examples of Tibet and Taiwan are before the international community. Reports are alarming. The Guardian quotes-’Shiva Upreti, the Gorkha district correspondent of Nepalese newspaper Annapurna Post in a story done on 7 July, had revealed that China has occupied the entire Rui village that comes under Gorkha district.’

The contemporary government in India, too, is not taking active role as it has played in case of Doklam earlier. Moreover there is continuous face-off between India and China in the northern most area of Ladakh. Chinese neighbors must unite to stop such unethical expansionism.

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