China-Pak­istan Anti-In­dia Nexus

Chances of con­ven­tional con­flict are less com­pared to the un­con­ven­tional but we must be pre­pared for both. The re­quire­ment for In­dia to es­tab­lish a de­ter­rent against ir­reg­u­lar/un­con­ven­tional war­fare was never more given the dim prospects of break-up of Ch

SP's LandForces - - FRONT PAGE - Lt Gen­eral (Retd) P.C. Ka­toch

Chances of con­ven­tional con­flict are less com­pared to the un­con­ven­tional but we must be pre­pared for both. The re­quire­ment for In­dia to es­tab­lish a de­ter­rent against ir­reg­u­lar/un­con­ven­tional war­fare was never more given the dim prospects of break-up of China-Pak­istan anti-In­dia nexus.

SAR­TAJ AZIZ, NAWAZ SHARIF’S spe­cial en­voy dur­ing his re­cent visit to New Delhi, met sep­a­ratist Hur­riyat lead­ers and as­sured them that Pak­istan will con­tinue to sup­port sep­a­ratists in Jammu and Kash­mir (J&K). Hur­ri­iyat’s fox, Syed Ali Shah Gee­lani asked Aziz that Pak­istan should not only sup­port them po­lit­i­cally and diplo­mat­i­cally but also through ‘other means’—read through in­fil­tra­tion, ter­ror­ism, fi­nan­cially and arm­ing. Iron­i­cally, China too is gam­ing to some­how wrest J&K from In­dia as part of its strate­gic plan to march south along the en­tire Hi­malayan re­gion, right down to the In­dian Ocean.

Ini­ti­at­ing the Nexus

How China dove­tailed Pak­istan into its strate­gic cal­cu­la­tions is in­di­cated by a book that was pub­lished in Karachi in the year 2000. In this book, From a Head, through a Head, to Head, the au­thor F.S. Ai­jazud­din writes, “Chou-en Lai sug­gested to Ayub Khan that Pak­istan should pre­pare for pro­longed con­flict with In­dia in­stead of short-term wars. He ad­vised Pak­istan to raise a mili­tia force to act be­hind enemy [read In­dian] lines.” The pe­riod re­ferred is early 1960s when Chou-en Lai had vis­ited Pak­istan. The an­i­mos­ity China nur­tured to­wards In­dia even then de­spite all the Hindi-Chini Bhai Bhai slo­gans is ap­par­ent. Based on China’s ad­vice to raise a mili­tia be­hind In­dian lines, which are the ji­hadis of to­day, Pak­istan started in­duct­ing armed mod­ules pan In­dia in 1992-93, Stu­dents Is­lamic Move­ment of In­dia (SIMI) started send­ing cadres to Pak­istan for train­ing with mu­ja­hedeen, Tal­iban and Al Qaeda, plus es­tab­lished links with rad­i­cals in Bangladesh.

PRC’s Legacy

China’s pro­pa­ganda of ‘peace­ful rise of China’ is not only false; the Chi­nese Com­mu­nist Party’s (CCP’s) rule over Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China (PRC) has been ab­ject op­po­site: oust­ing na­tion­al­ists from Manchuria in 1948; crush­ing 4,000 Ti­betans with 30,000 bat­tle hard­ened com­mu­nist troops; oc­cu­py­ing Sinkiang and shelling Tai­wan; oc­cu­py­ing 38,000 sq km of In­dian ter­ri­tory of Ak­sai Chin; killing 25-30 mil­lion Chi­nese dur­ing the Great Leap; in­vad­ing In­dia in 1962 and back-stab­bing USSR on Cuba; oc­cu­py­ing Shaks­gam in re­turn to mas­sive arms sup­ply, nu­clear tech­nol­ogy and ring mag­nets to kick-start Pak­istan’s nu­clear pro­gramme in con­tra­ven­tion of the Nu­clear Non-Pro­lif­er­a­tion Treaty (NPT) and rules of Na­tional Se­cu­rity Guard (NSG); clash­ing with In­dia at Nathu La in 1967 and fir­ing on Rus­sian ships on Amur River; fight­ing USSR in 1969 and jin­go­ism with In­dia in 1971; in­vad­ing Viet­nam in 1979 “to teach Viet­nam a les­son”; vi­o­lent sup­pres­sion in Tianan­men Square in 1989. Since Mao’s time, China re­cruited and sup­ported ex­trem­ist Maoist groups, such as in Nepal and Burma, the New Peo­ple’s Army of Philip­pines, the Kh­mer Rouge in Cambodia, Ja­panese Red Army and Shin­ing Path in Peru. To­day, China supports In­dian Maoists and their scrip­ture “Strat­egy and Tac­tics for the In­dian Rev­o­lu­tion” of 2004 has an in­deli­ble Bei­jing flavour.

Pak­istan’s In­fir­mi­ties

No amount of de­nials can ob­fus­cate Pak­istan’s con­tin­u­ing quest for an iden­tity. The pow­er­ful mil­i­tary and In­ter-Ser­vices In­tel­li­gence (ISI) (both sides of the same coin) have ruth­lessly throt­tled any at­tempts to democra­tise the coun­try and achieve an iden­tity of its own. Aye­sha Sid­diqa wrote in her book Mil­i­tary Inc pub­lished in 2007 that the worth of the Pak­istani mil­i­tarypri­vate in­dus­try-cor­po­rate com­plex was worth $20.7 bil­lon then. This would have in­creased man­i­fold and there is no way they would let go of this, which is be­ing fur­ther con­cre­tised through in­sti­tu­tion­alised rad­i­cal­i­sa­tion of Pak­istan, breed­ing ha­tred against In­dia and Afghanistan, and play­ing up eth­nic vi­o­lence. Not only is democ­racy held hostage, any politi­cian or bu­reau­crat fall­ing out of line faces out­right boot­ing.


China views Kash­mir as the spring­board to the west and ac­cess to In­dian Ocean through Gwadar, Chaba­har and Ban­dar Ab­bas. Iron­i­cally, the United States while ‘nudg­ing In­dia’ is obliv­i­ous to what ‘con­ces­sions’ In­dia has given and how has Pak­istan re­sponded. In­dia has given nu­mer­ous con­ces­sions to Pak­istan, some of which are: In­dia de­clared a uni­lat­eral cease­fire in J&K in 1948 when Pak­istani forces were on the run and Pak­istan still il­le­gally held one third of Kash­mir. As per the UN res­o­lu­tion of 1948, Pak­istani se­cu­rity forces were to clear out from Pak­istan Oc­cu­pied Kash­mir (PoK). Not only did Pak­istan counter the UN man­date by re­in­forc­ing its se­cu­rity

To­day, China supports In­dian Maoists and their scrip­ture “Strat­egy and Tac­tics for the In­dian Rev­o­lu­tion” of 2004 has an in­deli­ble Bei­jing flavour

forces in PoK, it has de­lib­er­ately al­tered the de­mog­ra­phy of PoK. In­dia did not pur­sue de­lin­eation of cease­fire line (CFL) be­tween In­dia-Pak­istan un­der the Karachi Agree­ment of 1949 be­yond NJ 9842 – “north­wards” to the Wakhan Cor­ri­dor, bor­der­ing China and Afghanistan; In­dia did not go to UN when Pak­istan trans­ferred the Shaks­gam Val­ley of J&K to China; is giv­ing 80 per cent of wa­ter to Pak­istan un­der the In­dus Wa­ter Treaty—far in ex­cess to global norms re­lated with the size of the river basin; re­turned the cap­tured strate­gic Haji Pir Pass to Pak­istan in 1965; treated 93,000 Pak­istani pris­on­ers of the 1971 pris­on­ers with re­spect and re­turned them re­ly­ing on ver­bal prom­ise of Zul­fikar Ali Bhutto dur­ing the Shimla Ac­cord to re­solve the Kash­mir is­sue—a prom­ise Bhutto re­neged later; with a heart filled with friend­ship; Prime Min­is­ter Atal Bi­hari Va­j­payee took the bus to La­hore while Mushar­raf pre­pared to stab us in Kargil; In­dian Army gave for­mal re­li­gious buri­als to Pak­istani sol­diers un­claimed and aban­doned by Pak­istan dur­ing the Kargil Con­flict, while Pak­istani Army bru­tally tor­tured, maimed and killed Cap­tain Sau­rabh Kalia, five other In­dian sol­diers and Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja; In­dia granted the most favoured na­tion (MFN) sta­tus to Pak­istan years ago; In­dia has given in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties to Pak­ista­nis in In­dia. Pak­istan’s re­sponse has been: breed­ing ter­ror­ism in In­dia; in­fil­trat­ing ter­ror­ists; cre­at­ing an armed ter­ror­ist ar­chi­tec­ture pan-In­dia since early 1990s; engineering end­less ter­ror­ist at­tacks/acts in Delhi, Pune, Mum­bai, Gu­jarat, other parts of In­dia in­clud­ing IC-814 hijack, at­tack on Par­lia­ment, 26/11 Mum­bai ter­ror­ist at­tack, etc; re­fus­ing to act against Pak­istani per­pe­tra­tors of 26/11; nur­tur­ing, pa­tro­n­is­ing and mas­ter­mind­ing Lak­shkar-e-Toiba (LeT) acts against In­dia; us­ing the Haqqani net­work to tar­get In­di­ans and In­dian in­ter­ests in Afghanistan; pump­ing drugs and fake cur­rency (minted in Pak­istani Gov­ern­ment fa­cil­i­ties) into In­dia; or­gan­is­ing open ral­lies in Pak­istan pro­fess­ing balka­ni­sa­tion of In­dia, col­lect­ing of funds and re­cruit­ment for ji­had against In­dia un­der the very nose of the ad­min­is­tra­tion and with open sup­port of mil­i­tary vet­er­ans in con­nivance of the ISI and mili- tary; re­fusal to ac­knowl­edge con­tin­u­a­tion of the ‘Karachi Project’ and other Pak­istani com­plic­ity as dis­closed by Abu Jun­dal; fund­ing anti-In­dia ter­ror­ists openly –as done in Pak­istan’s Pun­jab, etc.

In­dia per­mit­ted Sar­taj Aziz meet Hur­riyat sep­a­ratists in New Delhi de­spite the fact that Aziz was Pak­istan’s For­eign Min­is­ter when Pak­istan un­der­took mas­sive in­fil­tra­tions in Kargil re­gion dur­ing 1999. He trav­elled to China to drum up sup­port against In­dia dur­ing the con­flict, sought sup­port from Or­gan­i­sa­tion of Is­lamic Con­fer­ence (OIC) also dur­ing Kargil con­flict, la­beled In­dia of hav­ing “over­re­acted” and later claimed in the me­dia that Pak­istan had achieved its aims in the Kargil con­flict by “forc­ing Kash­mir dis­pute to the top of the global agenda”. More sig­nif­i­cantly, Pak­istan has been ig­nor­ing the sys­tem­atic slaugh­ter of Shias and Ah­madiyas in Gil­git-Baltistan (GB) and opened the area to Chi­nese in a bid to put a lid on the un­rest. In the pe­ti­tion dated July 11, 2011, ad­dressed to the UN Sec­re­tary Gen­eral by Ab­dul Hamid Khan, Chair­man Balawaris­tan Na­tional Front (BNF) in Pak­istan and China oc­cu­pied Gil­git-Baltistan to ‘Save the In­no­cent Peo­ple of Gil­git-Baltistan from the Gal­lows of Pak­istan’, writ­ten on be­half of some two mil­lion in­hab­i­tants of GB, Ab­dul Hamid Khan cat­e­gor­i­cally stated, “Pak­istan’s cur­rent role in Gil­git-Baltistan is a clear vi­o­la­tion of UN… The peo­ple of Gil­git Baltistan are the most suf­fer­ers and their fun­da­men­tal, le­gal, eth­nic, cul­tural, eco­nomic and demo­cratic rights are be­ing de­nied. In­dia has in­cluded this re­gion into its Con­sti­tu­tion… Pak­istan has de­nied all fun­da­men­tal, le­gal, eth­nic, cul­tural, eco­nomic and demo­cratic rights for the last 63 years… Pak­istan has mul­ti­plied its troops thou­sand times and civil, po­lit­i­cal and fun­da­men­tal rights have been snatched by its mil­i­tary, in­tel­li­gence agen­cies and re­li­gious fun­da­men­tal­ists. Pak­istan has con­tin­u­ously been hood­wink­ing in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity by giv­ing dif­fer­ent names, des­ig­na­tions and pack­ages to its un­law­ful oc­cu­pa­tion... The peo­ple of Gil­git Baltistan are not cit­i­zens of Pak­istan as per the UN Res­o­lu­tions of Au­gust 13, 1948 and Jan­uary 5, 1949, and also as per the con­sti­tu­tions of Pak­istan and In­dia. Ab­dul Hamid Khan’s pe­ti­tion in­cludes an ex­haus­tive list of scores of in­di­vid­u­als who have been given death sen­tences and life im­pris­on­ment (some al­ready ex­e­cuted and some await­ing ex­e­cu­tion) with­out giv­ing them ac­cess to the High Court and Supreme Court, so that no­body op­poses the oc­cu­pa­tion of Gil­git Baltistan by Pak­istan.

The re­sults of the first ever poll on both sides of the line of con­trol in J&K con­ducted by Royal In­sti­tute of In­ter­na­tional Af­fairs (Chatam House), UK, in con­junc­tion with King’s Col­lege dur­ing 2009-10 (con­ducted on be­hest of for­mer Pres­i­dent of Pak­istan Pervez Mushar­raf and fi­nanced by Muam­mar Gaddafi’s son) bring­ing out that 98 per cent of peo­ple in J&K do not wish to be part of Pak­istan and 50 per cent of peo­ple in PoK do not wish to re­main with Pak­istan. But the fact re­mains that Pak­istan’s for­eign pol­icy with its at­ten­u­ated strat­egy of ter­ror is evolved and con­trolled by the Pak­istani Mil­i­tary over which Nawaz Sharif has ab­so­lutely no lien.

Thick­en­ing Nexus

Not only do China and Pak­istan pose a joint con­ven­tional threat to In­dia, they want to break up In­dia in­ter­nally too. When ULFA camps were routed by the RBA from Bhutan, train­ing and arm­ing of ULFA was or­gan­ised on Chi­nese soil. China was linked to Al Qaeda and Tal­iban even prior to 2006. China has pro­vided ad­vi­sors and weapons to Pak­istan Tal­iban. The In­dian Mu­ja­hedeen (IM) is the cre­ation of ISI. China has been tac­itly sup­port­ing Pak­istan’s anti-In­dia ji­had, one rea­son be­ing Pak­istan’s prom­ise to sup­press Uighur sep­a­ratist in­clud­ing some 320 East Turk­istan Is­lamic Move­ment (ETIM) cadres from China, hiding in Pak­istan. Col­lud­ing with ter­ror­ists in In­dia’s North­east and in ac­cor­dance the China-Pak­istan plan of form­ing a Strate­gic United Front Bangladesh and Nepal, is ac­tively be­ing pur­sued. Lit­tle ex­ter­nal sup­port to Maoists is a mis­nomer and be­ing played down by the gov­ern­ment. LeT (covert arm of ISI) rep­re­sen­ta­tives have been at­tend­ing Maoists meet­ings and ISI is sup­ply­ing arms. China has re­port­edly gifted an AK-47 man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­ity to Kachin rebels in North Myan­mar (United war army of Myan­mar) and the weapons are flow­ing to the Peo­ple’s Lib­er­a­tion Army in Ma­nipur and Maoists. China is also arm­ing and train­ing the United Lib­er­a­tion Front of As­sam and Chi­nese na­tion­als with fake In­dian iden­ti­ties, hav­ing at­tempted con­tact­ing the the Na­tional So­cial­ist Coun­cil of Na­ga­land. Joint train­ing of In­dian in­sur­gents is be­ing or­gan­ised in north­ern Myan­mar. AK-47’s and Uzi’s are flow­ing in. The Chi­nese, ac­cord­ing to a na­tional tele­vi­sion chan­nel, have also be­gun to sup­ply so­phis­ti­cated sig­nal equip­ment with en­cryp­tion ca­pa­bil­i­ties to the Maoists. The re­cov­ery of 1.5 kg ura­nium IED in As­sam ear­lier this year is omi­nous. There is ev­ery pos­si­bil­ity of China pump­ing in shoul­der fired air de­fence mis­siles to the Maoists un­der the garb of de­ni­a­bil­ity, sim­i­lar to hav­ing sup­plied them to Shia in­sur­gents in Iraq, Tal­iban and the United Wa State Army (UWSA) in Myan­mar. China has even sup­plied he­li­copters fit­ted with air-to-air mis­siles to UWSA in Fe­bru­ary-March this year.

Not only is China in il­le­gal oc­cu­pa­tion of con­sid­er­able In­dian Ter­ri­tory (mainly Ak­sai Chin and Shaks­gam Val­ley), more sig­nif­i­cantly Chi­nese claim lines have been ex­pand­ing over the years. To top this are the pe­ri­odic in­tru­sions get­ting deeper and in wil­ful de­fi­ance of all the pre­vi­ous joint agree­ments: “Main­te­nance of Peace and Tran­quil­ity Along the Line of Ac­tual Con­trol in the In­dia-China Bor­der Ar­eas” signed on Septem­ber 7, 1993, another “Agree­ment on Con­fi­dence Build­ing Mea­sures in the Mil­i­tary Field Along the Line of Ac­tual Con­trol in the In­dia-China Bor­der Ar­eas, the Pro­to­col on Modal­i­ties for the Im­ple­men­ta­tion of Con­fi­dence Build­ing Mea­sures in the Mil­i­tary Field Along the Line of Ac­tual Con­trol in In­dia-China Bor­der Ar­eas” signed on April 11, 2005, and the “Agree­ment on Es­tab­lish­ment of a Work­ing Mecha- nism for Con­sul­ta­tion and Co­or­di­na­tion on In­dia-China Bor­der Af­fairs” signed on Jan­uary 17, 2012. It would be no sur­prise if China vi­o­lates the re­cently signed BDCA agree­ment too as China ap­pears to be fol­low­ing the ‘car­rot and stick pol­icy’ against In­dia.

China’s ex­panded claim to en­tire Arunachal Pradesh (sprung as late as 2005) as South Ti­bet is highly pre­pos­ter­ous. Com­ing to the claim of South Ti­bet, if China wants to go back in his­tory, then it can­not go back to a pe­riod it de­sires and might as well go back all the way. In­dian ter­ri­to­ries were once right up to the Hin­dukush Moun­tains, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh were part of In­dia and por­tions of Ti­bet too were an­nexed by In­dia. Bri­tish In­dian troops were hold­ing Yatung but it does not mean that we start claim­ing all this ter­ri­tory. In the sev­enth cen­tury, Ti­bet was an em­pire, span­ning the high heart­land and deserts of the north-west, reach­ing from the bor­ders of Uzbek­istan to Cen­tral China, from half­way across Xinjiang, an area larger than the Chi­nese heart­land. In­deed in 763, Ti­betan Army briefly cap­tured the Chi­nese cap­i­tal Chang-an (to­day’s Xian and much later it was the Mon­gols who later ruled China then oc­cu­pied Ti­bet. So should Mon­go­lia claim Ti­bet? His­tor­i­cally, un­til the early 13th cen­tury, China had no claims on Ti­bet. In­deed the op­po­site ap­plied: Ti­bet ruled half of the present day China, but looked to In­dia for its most sig­nif­i­cant in­flu­ence—Bud­dhism. So on what ba­sis does China claim au­thor­ity over Ti­bet?

The big­gest threat to In­dia is the Chi­naPak­istan anti-In­dia nexus that will en­large fur­ther with China want­ing to es­tab­lish mil­i­tary bases in North Waziris­tan and Fed­er­ally Ad­min­is­tered Tribal Ar­eas (FATA), Pak­istan likely leas­ing Gil­git-Baltistan to China for 50 years, the United States with­drawal from Afghanistan in 2014 and Baluchis­tan likely to be­come a Chi­nese ad­min­is­tered prov­ince by 2030. Chi­nese state TV has been show­ing J&K as part of Pak­istan:


We need to heed Chanakya, who in Arthashas­tra had said that your neigh­bour is your nat­u­ral enemy but more im­por­tantly went on in great de­tail to de­scribe how to deal with neigh­bours. Chances of con­ven­tional con­flict are less com­pared to the un­con­ven­tional but we must be pre­pared for both. The re­quire­ment for In­dia to es­tab­lish a de­ter­rent against ir­reg­u­lar/un­con­ven­tional war­fare was never more given the dim prospects of breakup of China-Pak­istan anti-In­dia nexus, China giv­ing up covertly marginal­is­ing In­dia and the Pak­istani Mil­i­tary-ISI al­low­ing In­di­aPak­istan peace. Ad­di­tion­ally, there must be frank and open di­a­logue on the is­sue with China in­clud­ing on Pak­istan’s gen­er­a­tion of global ter­ror­ism. With CCP con­tin­u­ing in power, con­tin­u­a­tion of erst­while China poli­cies may not eas­ily change but the hope is that there is re­al­i­sa­tion within China that Pak­istan is fast be­com­ing a li­a­bil­ity.


Dr Man­mo­han Singh with the Pres­i­dent of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China, Xi Jin­ping, in Bei­jing

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