This week, we witnessed a moment of monumental historic importance which is just being brushed over by the mainstream media.
India and China have agreed to withdraw soldiers stationed along a border friction point near the former’s Ladakh region, deescalating a military standoff which has erupted into violent clashes on several occasions since May 2020.
The two sides issued similarly worded statements on Thursday announcing the decision, which will see Indian and Chinese forces pull back from a disputed border area in the Chang Chenmo River valley.
“On September 8, according to the consensus reached in the 16th round of commander-level talks between China and India, the front-line troops of the Chinese and Indian militaries in Ganandaban began to disengage in a planned manner,” the Chinese Defense Ministry said, adding that the move is “conducive to maintaining peace and tranquility in the border areas.”
New Delhi also said the decision would help to promote “peace and tranquility” in the region, echoing Beijing’s statement.
The withdrawal came after a series of border skirmishes between Indian and Chinese troops which began in the spring of 2020, following a long-standing territorial dispute. Some of the clashes involved brawls between the two sides and led to casualties, including deaths among both Chinese and Indian soldiers.
You may recall that in 2020 when this conflict flared up, I said that it was a place to watch, as it was possible that it could end up being a flashpoint for a war between the US and China, given that at the time, India was on the side of the West, and the US Military had been going to India to do various drills.
India’s position on the West changed severely when the US started a war with Russia, and then used all of those previously unheard of sanctions to try to collapse Russia’s economy over what should have been a relatively minor border skirmish in the former USSR. I was watching a lot of Indian media at the time, and all Indian media – right-wing media that supports their current nationalist government – was attacking the US and saying that Russia hadn’t done anything wrong, and the sanctions could be used against anyone.
This Biden sanctions regime was a wakeup call to India and others, showing that it is impossible to have a fair and equitable relationship with the United States, that all they want to do is dominate. The dollar system itself is unsafe – if you get on the wrong side of the US, they can just destroy your economy on a whim – meaning that some alternative is needed.
When this was happening, I noted that despite a history of conflict, China and India’s interests were now aligning. I said that removing the troops from the border would be a great sign of good faith. And now, they’re doing that.
The problems between China and India are deep-rooted and largely cultural and historical, but both China’s Xi and India’s Modi are pragmatic men.
It’s an extremely good sign that they are making this gesture. Both of them are allies with Russia, and Putin is no doubt playing a part in bringing them together. India is a massive country, and if they are on the side of the East, the US is more or less completely finished. If Saudi Arabia were to join the East, things would shift in a visible way, and the American ruling class would become even more unhinged.
There is one lose end: China maintains a kind of toxic relationship to the dollar. They’ve been trying to extricate themselves from that, but they still do have some significant reliance on the dollar system, and that is one of the reasons that the US rulers cite as to why the Chinese can’t wiggle out of this relationship, and they can do things like send Nancy Pelosi to invade Taiwan without worrying about China moving to totally crush the US economy through their leverage on the global supply chain.
However, they are going to end up in some kind of situation where China says: “your money and infrastructure have been important – til now.”