There have been recent news articles about how Chinese Navy has sought permission from Indian authorities to comb waters around Andaman as a part of the search and rescue operations for the missing Malaysian Airliner.
This is exactly the overtures one will have to be concerned about and while I have dedicated an entire chapter in my book on the naval threat from China, such news articles make me even more worried about the designs that China has on our waters. This is certainly an innocently cloaked request and search for the missing airliner and it’s passengers is paramount but how much are we reading between the lines is an important question.
The release of confidential documents of 1962 conflict also seem to indicate that the then PM was ill-advised and the Forward Policy is what irritated the Chinese who were otherwise docile, meek and completely non-provoking in the run up to the conflict. I find it difficult to digest that there were no instances of mischief and we suddenly cocked a snook at them by doing Forward Policy. Decisions do backfire and intel can be wrong but to presume that we provoked China must be the worst assurance we can give ourselves.
The Chinese Navy is superior in size and while reports available in public domain indicate that it has some serious sea-worthiness challenges, we can’t be delusional about the fact that the next war that could be inflicted upon us , by China, could be from the sea. This is less far-fetched than the scenario when Churchill was asking his government to lay mines near England’s coast line to prevent a German aggression. History has records that Germany did have serious plans of Operation Sea Lion which turned out to be a thwarted invasion of England. What is the code name for China’s Sea Lion is something we would never know but what we know , so does the PM in my political fantasy, that India’s naval readiness needs a huge and urgent upgradation to be able to keep such an eventuality ( God forbid) at bay.
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