New Delhi: The end of the Doklam tussle comes under the category of one of India’s most spectacular diplomatic victories in decades.
And as is the case with any real victory it does not need shouting from rooftops. From starting to finish, the execution of India’s strategy here has been flawless and has achieved what India always wanted – Status Quo Ante — and most importantly a much-required counter to China’s salami tactics.
The victory magnitude can only be realized when we take into consideration how crushing a personal defeat for Xi Jinping this actually is.
Xi, widely been regarded as the mastermind of this Bhutan gambit, had made a number of assumptions, all of which turned out to be erroneous. The first was the belief that India could be punished for its OBOR Lèse-majesté by weaning Bhutan away from India.
“Unwittingly, Chinese actions have simply added to India’s stature as a mature and responsible status quo power. What had been clear from day one was that China’s options were limited. On the one hand, if China used force it would set a precedent that other countries could also respond in force to China’s land grabs, not to mention destroy several fundamentals of nuclear deterrence,” pointed out an External affairs ministry source on the condition of anonymity.
He further went on to add: “If China did not use force it would be seen as weak – encouraging other neighbours to counter-land/sea grabs. In effect, unwittingly,China landed itself in a ‘do-and-be-damned, don’t-do-and-be-damned’ quandary. Knowing this full well, India chose to give China a face-saving exit.”
Simply put, India has not only found the best method when it comes to dealing with China, but also created a template for other countries to follow. China, while grabbing land, expects other countries to sit by passively and not shoot.