China’s counter strategies and US policies in Asia

Dr Mehmood-ul-Hassan Khan

ACCORDING to various published reports of the US government and its establishment it has already taken two strategic initiatives in our region.

Mainly, it has formed “strategic partnership” with India and declared China and Russia as its enemy.

Undoubtedly, both initiatives have spillover repercussions in diverse spheres of economy, security, geopolitics and geostrategic.

The ongoing Russia-Ukraine war has further exposed the ill designs of the US, NATO and the West alike.

In this regard, the policy makers of China are taking all possible peaceful counter strategies to cope with the emerging socio-economic, geopolitical and geostrategic conflicting realities in the region and beyond.

The EU has unilaterally announced 6th round of sanctions against Russia which have further divided the world into two ‘distinctive” poles.

On the other hand, the USA and India have a strong strategic partnership based on so-called shared values and a commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

That is why, the US supports India’s emergence as a leading global power and vital partner in efforts to ensure that the Indo-Pacific is a region of peace, stability and growing prosperity and economic inclusion.

Thus supports India to “encircle” China from its backyard. Moreover, both countries cooperate on a wide range of diplomatic, economic and security issues, including defence, non-proliferation, regional cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, shared democratic values, counterterrorism, climate change, health, energy, trade and investment, peacekeeping, environment, education, science & technology, agriculture, space and oceans.

It seems that US-India defence cooperation has reached to new heights, including through information sharing, liaison officers, increasingly complex exercises like Malabar and defence enabling agreements, such as the secure communications agreement COMCASA.

As of 2020, the United States has authorized over $20 billion in defence sales to India. Through the US-India Defence Technology and Trade Initiative, the United States and India work together on co-production and co-development of defence equipment.

The US and India are also trying to closely coordinating on regional security issues such as Afghanistan.

Thus US, India, Australia, Japan, South Korea and last but not the least, Taiwan have clubbed their strategic priorities against China.

To counter these strategic alliances, China will have to further enhance its ties with Pakistan, Russia, Iran, Indonesia, Malaysia, Turkey, Central Asia and, of course, all the regional Muslim countries.

In this context, early initiation of CPEC Phase-II and reactivation of the BRI projects in all the South East Asian and Indo-Pacific regions should be the strategic priority of China.

In case of Central Asian countries, the policy makers of China should immediately extend its cooperation under the flagship project of BRI Health Silk Route.

All impediments in terms of PTA, FTA, FDIs, capacity building mechanism, commercial diplomacy and joint ventures should be resolved amicably.

The Chinese government should also chalk out a comprehensive roadmap to counter the Western Alternative Reality Doctrines (WARDs) and targeting its peaceful diplomatic efforts to achieve peace in the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict.

In this regard, close regional media cooperation, coordination of the prominent and genuine think tanks and collaboration of the marketing strategists is the need of the hour.

More precisely the role of “Centre for South Asia & International Studies (CSAIS) Islamabad” and “Daily English newspaper Pakistan Observer” may be effective to mitigate Western propaganda against China and its regional allies.

Since the start of unfortunate conflict between Russia and Ukraine the government of the US and its establishment have been targeting China by design.

Thus the US military and its constant arms support and the NATO secretive assistance have further delayed the prospects of de-escalation.

The International Relation Theory of “Just War” gives every right to Russia to defend its strategic vested interests mainly increasing eastward expansion of the NATO (Black Sea water) and succession of Ukraine to the EU and NATO alike.

But ironically, neither the US nor the EU and NATO are seemingly ready to pay attention towards Russian legitimate concerns.

Time and again, Chinese Foreign Ministry has conveyed its concern about the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine and urged all parties to give peace a chance to put an end to ongoing war.

It further upheld that vicious intents of the US and NATO which hold no moral ground amid Ukraine crisis would not be effective.

A most recent statement by US Department of State claimed that so-called China’s uncritical amplification of Moscow’s messaging demonstrates Beijing’s support for Russia.

The statement intentionally targeted Chinese media, social media and diplomats, saying, “This amplification rationalizes President Putin’s unjustified and unprovoked war against Ukraine while undermining trust in the United States and other countries, democratic institutions and independent media.”

It is a self-contradictory illusion because on the same day, Michael Carpenter, the US Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, completely rejected the chances of China’s endeavouring to help Russia with its military campaign in Ukraine.

” Both statements reflect the US dual policies on China which are intended to draw a “red line” for China and put a ceiling in China-Russia cooperation.

It seems that US desires to affect Beijing’s autonomy in its policies toward Moscow, in a bid to maximize US attacks against Russia, while pushing China into a corner in both a moral and economic sense.

Most of the regional experts termed the US desire as a practice of a thief yelling “catch the thief!”

To conclude, the US has been manipulating the issue of “China supports Russia” with “fabricated narrative, constantly implying that China is responsible for the escalation of the situation.

On the other hand, China does not want to see the escalation of the Ukraine crisis.

It fears that the US false, fake and fictional narrative will only further harm the strategic mutual trust between China and the US and the two countries cooperation in the international community.

It is now proven that Washington is the main schemers for the Ukraine crisis, and the US-led NATO holds tight the key to its solution.

Therefore, it is right time to stop US public opinion war in the troubled situation, as the opinion war does not serve any purpose other than to encourage new confrontations.

In this regard, the Chinese Embassy in the United States showed its displeasure with the claims made by the US State Department that Chinese officials and media “routinely amplify Kremlin propaganda, conspiracy theories and disinformation” on the Ukraine issue.

China stands for total transparency, impartiality, peaceful conflict resolution through diplomacy, dialogue and development.

Chinese President’s Global Development Initiative and shared community doctrine has repeatedly denied having prior knowledge of Russia’s move, tacitly supporting Russia’s operation or providing military assistance to Russia.

—The writer is Director, the Centre for South Asia & International Studies Islamabad & regional expert, China, CPEC & BRI.

(Courtesy Pakistan Observer)