Chinese-Indian war games: A bad peace is better than a good quarrel

15.11.2016

Against the backdrop of deteriorating relations between New Delhi and Beijing, the “Hand in Hand 2016” Chinese-Indian war games are starting in India.

Details

These annual exercises are held alternately in India and China. This will be the sixth in the series. The war games are traditionally held in three stages: the first is familiarizing with the technology of the ally, the second is shooting, humanitarian and rescue operations, and the third is direct joint operations. 

The factor of destructive movements

The main feature of these exercises is that they are directed not only against terrorism, like the vast majority of similar operations around the world, but also against separatist movements, which affect both countries especially in recent times.

If Kashmir is a problematic region for India, then Uighur terrorism (fueled from the outside) is beginning to show force in China.

In addition, tensions remain on the territory of Southern Tibet, which Beijing contests from New Delhi.

Context

These war games dealing with questions that are truly painful for these countries are expected to improve bilateral relations after their serious deterioration.

In August and September, after China sent a letter protesting the militarization of a disputed region and the Indian-Vietnamese defense deal, negotiations between the two neighboring countries and BRICS members on the inclusion of India in the Nuclear Suppliers Group reached an impasse.

Against the background of these semi-dormant talks, New Delhi signed a nuclear deal with Japan that Pakistan considered discriminatory. Beijing, in turn, has implemented a number of projects with Islamabad, whose relations with India, shortly before, deteriorated almost to a state of war.

All of this, of course, does not make the shaky peace in the region any stronger or the BRICS bloc stronger. However, joint exercises may be the first step towards strengthening good neighborly relations.