Can China win a war with India?

Himalayan conflict between India and China comes to a head again

It has been less than two months since Indian and Chinese soldiers died in a collision in the border region in the Himalayas. The incident at an altitude of 4,500 meters has not been fully clarified. According to reports, however, the soldiers attacked each other with sticks and threw each other down a steep slope. 20 Indian and an unknown number of Chinese soldiers died. Clashes between the two nuclear powers broke out again at the weekend.

According to Indian information, 500 soldiers from the Chinese People's Liberation Army broke into the Spanggur Valley on Saturday evening. They were repulsed in a three-hour battle. It is not known whether there were any deaths. According to Indian sources, this was the third attempt in three days to advance into Indian territory. In China, again, India is accused of invading Chinese territory.

Almost uninhabited, but important

The disputed valley is in Ladakh, where the western part of the border runs. The areas are largely uninhabited, but of strategic importance. On Tuesday it was announced that India was also increasing its troop presence in Arunachal Pradesh, a border section east of the Kingdom of Bhutan.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry announced that Chinese soldiers never crossed the Line of Actual Control (LAC). The border between the two countries in this region has been unclear and controversial for decades. In October 1962 there was a brief war between the two countries. The military border forms the LAC, which is not recognized by either of the two states as an official border. Smaller skirmishes have taken place since then. In Washington it was said that "one is watching the conflict very closely, but hoping for a peaceful solution".

Elephant before the crash

In the Chinese press - as in the conflict with the USA - it is emphasized that one is betting on peacefulness oneself. At the same time, however, Beijing's press threatens serious consequences. The Indian gross national product collapsed by 23 percent in the second quarter, writes the state newspaper "Global Times". The country sometimes has the highest Covid 19 infections, according to the state newspaper of the country in which the corona virus was first detected. "The Indian government has forgotten its main task of increasing the standard of living." The USA are not really allies, they are only abusing the country for their own ends. One caricature shows an elephant pounding on a hole, blindfolded.

Tensions between the two countries rise at a time that is extremely unfavorable for Beijing. Because for months, China has also been in an escalation spiral with the USA. At the weekend, Beijing tried with a new regulation on sensitive key technologies to put obstacles in the way of the sale of the Tiktok video platform, which was forced by US President Trump. Trump wants to see the app sold to an American company, or else ban it because it spies on user data and passes it on to the government in Beijing.

Indian President Narendra Modi has already gone a step further. Numerous Chinese apps have been blocked in India since the end of July, including Wechat, which is known as the "Swiss Army Knife" among apps and is also used by many non-Chinese people. However, China itself censors the Internet like no other country. Numerous apps such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, but also western websites have been blocked there for years. (Philipp Mattheis, September 2, 2020)