It’s no secret that the mainstream media doesn’t prioritize stories that are actually important. While everyone’s been talking about the latest celebrity breakup and whatever contrived controversy that has been stirred up against the president, most people are completely oblivious to the fact that a terrifying war is brewing in the heart of Asia.
In June, a decades old border dispute between India and China flared up, after Chinese soldiers attempted to build a road in the Doklam region of Bhutan, a remote and sparsely populated plateau that doesn’t appear to have any strategic significance or resources. China responded in July by explicitly threatening war if India doesn’t back off.
Since then those threats haven’t tapered off at all. If anything they’ve escalated as the Global Times, a media mouthpiece for the Chinese government, continues to make jingoistic threats towards India’s border troops.
Over the past month, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has been on the move. We believe that the PLA has made sufficient preparation for military confrontation.
It is a war with an obvious result. The government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi should be aware of the PLA’s overwhelming firepower and logistics. Indian border troops are no rival to PLA field forces. If a war spreads, the PLA is perfectly capable of annihilating all Indian troops in the border region.
And what’s more worrisome, is that China has gone so far as to issue a timeline for India to withdraw it’s troops from the region. On Friday the Global Times issued the following report:
China urged India to immediately pull back the trespassing troops to the Indian side of the boundary and called on them to swiftly address the situation in a proper manner to restore peace and tranquility in the border region, Ren Guoqiang, a spokesperson for the defense ministry said in a statement posted on its website late Thursday night.
“The series of remarks from the Chinese side within a 24-hour period sends a signal to India that there is no way China will tolerate the Indian troops’ incursion into Chinese territory for too long. If India refuses to withdraw, China may conduct a small-scale military operation within two weeks,” said Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences.
Hu said that the military operation would aim to seize Indian personnel illegally lingering in Chinese territory or to expel them. “The Chinese side will inform the Indian Foreign Ministry before its operation,” Hu said.
This of course isn’t an official threat, given that the commenter is merely a researcher at a think tank. But it’s important to remember that every institution in China has strong ties with the government, and the Global Times thoroughly aligned with the Communist Party. They quite literally toe the party line, and they don’t publish anything that isn’t sanctioned by the government. They provide the best way for Beijing elites to issue proclamations without raising any eyebrows in the international media.
Make no mistake, though this threat isn’t official it is very real, and should be considered a genuine statement from the Chinese government. We could be weeks away from seeing a serious conflagration between India and China.