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Rising China: Opportunity or Strategic Challenge

Rising China: Opportunity or Strategic Challenge

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The book is covered under four chapters: -
A) Rise of China
B) China's Employment of Soft Power
C) Strategic Capability and
D) Regional Implications of China's Rise

The book is based on the USI National Security Seminar with contributions from some of the well known experts on China from India & abroad. The contributors to the book are as follows:-
Indian
Shri M K Rasgotra
Prof Srikant Kondapalli
Shri Mohan Guruswamy
Lt Gen V R Raghvan
V Adm K K Nayar
Rear Adm K R Menon
Brig Subodh Kumar
Shri Sujit Datta
Shri Jayadeva Ranade, IPS
Shri K Raghunath, IFS
From Abroad
Prof Zhang Guihong,China
Lt Gen Masahiro Kunimi, Japan
Ms Bethany Danyluk, USA
Prof Aileen Baviera, Philippines
Prof Han Hua, China
Prof Michael Pillsbury, USDoD
Mr Yung Sheng Chao, Taipei
Lt Gen Takayoshi Ogawa, Japan
Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda,Japan
Prof Jaeho Hwang,Korea
The book is covered under four chapters: -
A) Rise of China
B) China's Employment of Soft Power
C) Strategic Capability and
D) Regional Implications of China's Rise

The book is based on the USI National Security Seminar with contributions from some of the well known experts on China from India & abroad. The contributors to the book are as follows:-
Indian
Shri M K Rasgotra
Prof Srikant Kondapalli
Shri Mohan Guruswamy
Lt Gen V R Raghvan
V Adm K K Nayar
Rear Adm K R Menon
Brig Subodh Kumar
Shri Sujit Datta
Shri Jayadeva Ranade, IPS
Shri K Raghunath, IFS
From Abroad
Prof Zhang Guihong,China
Lt Gen Masahiro Kunimi, Japan
Ms Bethany Danyluk, USA
Prof Aileen Baviera, Philippines
Prof Han Hua, China
Prof Michael Pillsbury, USDoD
Mr Yung Sheng Chao, Taipei
Lt Gen Takayoshi Ogawa, Japan
Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda,Japan
Prof Jaeho Hwang,Korea

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RISING CHINA

OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE
BASED ON PROCEEDINGS OF
NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
HELD AT USI, NEW DELHI
ON 25-26 NOV 2009
Established 1870
Published in association with
United Service Institution of India
New Delhi
Vij Books India Pvt Ltd
21 Ansari Road, Daryaganj, New Delhi
Published by
Vij Multimedia
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(Publishers, Distributors & Importers)
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Copyright © 2010, United Service Institution oI India, New Delhi
ISBN: 978-93-81411-889
Price outside India: US $ 25
No part oI this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, transmitted or
utilized in any Iorm or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or
otherwise, without the prior permission oI the copyright owner. Application Ior such
permission should be addressed to the publisher.
The views expressed in the book are oI authors and not necessarily those oI the
publishers.
CONTENTS
Welcome Remarks Lieutenant General PK Singh, 7
PVSM,AVSM (Retd)
Keynote Address Air Commodore Jasjit Singh, 9
AVSM,VrC,VM (Retd)
Participants 25
First Session Rise of China 31
Chairman Shri MK Rasgotra, IFS (Retd)
First Paper Lieutenant General V R Raghavan, 33
PVSM,UYSM,AVSM (Retd)
Second Paper Prof Zhang Guihong, Fudan University, China 39
Third Paper Prof Srikant Kondapalli, JNU 45
Fourth Paper Lt Gen (Army) Masahiro Kunimi (Retd), 63
Okazaki Institute , Japan
Discussion 67
Second Session China’s Employment of Soft Power 77
Chairman Vice Adm KK Nayyar, PVSM,AVSM (Retd)
First Paper Shri Mohan Guruswamy 81
Second Paper Ms Bethany Danyluk, Booz Allen Hamilton,
USA 89
Third Paper Prof Aileen Baviera, University of Philippines. 99
Fourth Paper Shri Jayadeva Ranade, IPS (Retd) 107
Discussion 115
Third Session Strategic Capability : Space, Nuclear, 123
Power Projection and Regional Power
Chairman Rear Adm KR Menon (Retd)
First Paper Prof Han Hua , 127
SIS Peking University
Second Paper Prof Michael Pillsbury, 131
Consultant, USDoD
Third Paper Mr Yung Sheng Chao, 137
Prospect Foundation, Taipei.
Fourth Paper Lt Gen (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd), 143
Okazaki Institute, Japan
Fifth Paper Colonel Subodh Kumar 147
Discussion 165
Fourth Session Regional Implications of China’s 171
Rise : Building an enduring power
equation in Asia
Chairman Shri K Raghunath, IFS (Retd) 173
First Paper Prof Han Hua , SIS Peking University 179
Second Paper Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda (Retd) , 181
Okazaki Institute, Japan
Third Paper Professor Jaeho Hwang, 187
Korean Institute for Defence Analyses
Fourth Paper Professor Sujit Dutta, 191
Jamia Milia University
Discussion 199
Closing Remarks Shri Shiv Shankar Menon, IFS 207
S-54
RISING CHINA
OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC
CHALLENGE
Edited By
Maj Gen P J S Sandhu (Retd)
Deputy Director and Editor, USI
PROCEEDINGS OF
National Security Seminar 2009
HELD AT
USI, NEW DELHI
ON
25-26 NOVEMBER 2009
Welcome Remarks
Lieutenant General PK Singh,
PVSM, AVSM (Retd), Director, USI of India
Air Commodore Jasjit Singh, distinguished panelists, excellencies,
members of the United Service Institution of India (USI), members of the
media, ladies and gentlemen. It is my privilege and honour to welcome
you to this year’s National Security Seminar on ‘Rising China – An
Opportunity or Strategic Challenge’.
Amongst the honoured guests, there are some who are here in USI
for the first time. So, let me very briefly say something about the USI. It
was founded in Simla in 1870. It is an autonomous and financially self
supporting Institution with over 12,600 members. This Institution organised
its first Lecture Seminar on 30
th
January 1871 – yes, 138 years ago! We
discussed ‘China’ for the first time in 1889 and continue to do so even
today. We at the USI have been looking at issues of interest to our members
ever since we were founded.
China is a rising power. It has achieved tremendous progress in its
economic development and has carved a place for itself as a leader in
economic field. Based on China’s economic success, the PLA has steadily
promoted its modernisation programmes and this improved military
capability is changing the military balance in the region. The increase in
China’s Comprehensive National Power (CNP) is evident, but what is not
clear is – How China will use this growing power and influence in Asia and
the World? Some of the questions that we thought needed answers were:-
(a) What are the goals of China’s Security policies?
8 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
(b) How will China exercise its growing economic, political, military
and soft power?
(c) Will China be a status quo power or a revisionist power?
(d) How can you build an enduring power equation in Asia?
Over the next two days, we will deliberate on these and many other
issues. I would like to specially welcome the participants from China, the
USA, Japan, South Korea, Philippines, Taiwan and of course India. I would
also like to welcome the delegations from Okazaki Institute, Japan and the
Cross Straits Prospect Foundation, Taiwan who are here to also participate
in our bilateral dialogues. I must also extend a hearty welcome to the
delegation from the Netherland’s Advanced Defence Course led by
Lieutenant General Diepenbrugge who have taken time off from their busy
schedule to participate in this Seminar.
I am grateful to Air Commodore Jasjit Singh, AVSM, VrC, VM (Retd),
Director Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS) who has very graciously
agreed to deliver the Keynote Address.
Air Commodore Jasjit Singh joined the Indian Air Force in 1954 as a
fighter pilot and had a chequered career. He was awarded the Vir Chakra
in 1971 Indo-Pak War. He was later the Director of Operations at the IAF
Headquarters. He moved to Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses
(IDSA), where he had an equally distinguished innings serving as its Director
for 16 years. He was the Convenor of the Task Force to set up the National
Security Council. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the President
of India for outstanding service to the Nation in the field of defence and
National security.
It is my privilege and honour to invite Air Commodore Jasjit Singh to
now deliver the Keynote Address.
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 9
Keynote Address
Air Commodore Jasjit Singh, AVSM, VrC, VM (Retd)
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. I am indeed grateful to the Director,
USI, Lieutenant General PK Singh for having asked me to share my views
at such an important Seminar at USI. I must state this publicly that while I
served with one think tank for pretty long time, in IDSA, and I started another
think tank which has now completed 8 years, but my loyalties go to USI. I
will give you a simple reason for this.
When we were Commissioned, we were simply made the members
of USI. At that time a USI library catalogue was published and sent to us. I
spent first five years of my Air Force service career at an airfield which is in
the boon docks, in a place called Kalaikonda, where you could shoot
panthers on the airfield but you could not find a book to read. Newspapers
used to come a day late. So, the procedure at that time was that you could
select two books from the catalogue and request USI to send them. You
could keep them for one month. After you had finished reading, you posted
them back at your cost to USI. I think some people may have forgotten to
return books. Therefore, that process was stopped; which actually had
been started by USI long time ago so that officers deployed in remote
areas would have access to military related literature and everything that
goes with it. When, I came to the Indian Air Force Headquarters for the
first time in 1968, I could actively work with an outstanding human being,
an outstanding officer and a long time Director of USI, Colonel Pyara Lal.
So, to me it is homecoming; and as it happens at home, you can make
many mistakes. If I do make any mistakes in this Keynote address, I hope
10 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
you will understand that it is all because of my treating this more as an
informal process.
I looked at the title, about the question, ‘Rising China - an Opportunity
or Strategic Challenge?’. One wishes that one could look at it from another
angle also. If we change that word ‘or’ into ‘and’, it would read ‘Opportunity
and Strategic Challenge’. Then, I think we might be just a little closer to
understanding what is going on, and what is going to happen in the future
that would affect rest of the World, as also specifically India. India, because
I tend to look at things from an Indian perspective. The choice whether this
‘or’ will change to ‘and’, actually depends on what time horizon you wish to
look at. Are we looking at this year, next five years or the next twenty years
or the next fifty years? Your answers may well be different. But you will still
have one constant answer and that is, ‘China is a rising power’. I also don’t
believe that China’s rise to power is going to be disrupted in any way.
There is a lot of wishful thinking, somewhere in the West mostly, that
something in China will implode because it has now additional internal
problems. I heard much more of this in early 1990’s, when actually China
was nervous. Why I say this is because in my previous incarnation I used
to go to China with strong contacts with think tanks in China - between
IDSA, and Chinese Strategic Institute for Research (CSIR), and National
Defence University (NDU).
When the Soviet Union collapsed and the American pressures built
up all round, I think there was an uncertainty, amounting to almost essential
vulnerability in the Chinese mind to say that the next turn for destabilisation
of a country from outside sources, led by the USA, would be that of China.
Therefore, at that time they welcomed much closer relationship with India.
Although, chronologically it starts with Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s visit
in 1988, but by 1987 in fact, the Chinese literature was starting to talk
about: Indian Armed Forces are highly professional – there is lot to learn
from them. That is before the Tiananmen square incident. After 1989, that
added to their uncertainties creating a sense of weakness and vulnerability.
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 11
As time went by and once we got rapid access to Soviet military design
base, one major item for which they had no answer upto that time was:
How to modernise the Chinese military? Because everything was based
on the original Soviet designs, there was no way they could do it, except
through reverse engineering – but they just could not do it. And Soviets
were not willing to help them. In late 1980’s, as the Gorbachev’s policies
got going, they said that they were improving relations with China, and
also helping in upgrading the industries. It was asked of the Soviets, ‘Are
you going to upgrade their Defence industry?’ The answer used to be a
categorical - ‘No’. We don’t want to create a threat for ourselves for the
future.
Now, right or wrong, this perception had to be put aside because with
the collapse of the Soviet Union came a tremendous amount of economic
crisis. That allowed what was to follow. Here comes the first difference of
approach and method. India simply ignored that strategic opportunity, inspite
of a much closer relationship with the Soviet Union in those days, when 80
per cent of our weapons were ex-Soviet design base. Not one Soviet
technologist, engineer, designer was brought into India. However, this issue
of the 5th generation fighter aircraft design jointly is a much later happening
and I don’t know the future of that.
Coming back to the theme of this Seminar, I want to say first what I
should be saying at the end. Let me begin by answering the question,
‘Rising China, is it an opportunity or a strategic challenge?’ The answer
will depend mainly on how China conducts itself in the future, Chinese
perceptions of what is happening in the world and their world view. Some
of it, we do have an understanding, and that could change as time goes
by. Lot of people will talk about this as a Middle Kingdom syndrome.
Perhaps, a little bit of that will influence, a little bit of Sun Tzu will influence
and a little bit of something else will also influence. However, having been
to China for 13 years regularly, twice or thrice a year, and the Chinese
coming here to IDSA; I at least got the impression that the Chinese, like
12 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
us, have an old civilization. So many things are deeply rooted in that
civilization, like ours. But in other terms, what they do generally, will not be
too far away from the basic civilizational values that they have, regardless
of the political system in many other cases.
So, in this context, what is the landscape? First, there is a global
power shift going on from the West to the East. It is only a ‘return’ of power
to the East. It is not something new that is happening except that those
who do not read history may not know it. What does that history tell us?
Today serious literature, and I think all the data tells us that, global power
shift from the West to the East is taking place essentially because of the
rise of China and India. If you take a more detailed look, then you say, yes,
China is well ahead of India in that process. In fact, not that far ahead,
compared to what I am going to say in terms of historical experience.
At the beginning of the 18
th
Century, just two countries manufactured
approximately 60 per cent of the world’s manufacturing output. These two
countries also contained 62 per cent of the World’s total income or GDP,
as you today calculate. Which were these two countries? Number one
was China which accounted for 33 per cent, second was India at 24 per
cent.
Then, ‘industrialisation’ in the West, the ‘Industrial Revolution’ which
actually started in England and then spread to Europe and North America,
became the cause of many things – not only India becoming a colony, and
China being badgered and humiliated, as the Chinese say, by these powers,
where even a small power like Belgium had a huge empire in Africa. All
that came out of the Industrial Revolution. In that process, the older method
of economic productivity was destroyed. India and China, both, were de-
industrialised. I wish I could show you my favourite graph, where both just
keep coming down roughly parallel to each other, till by 1950, India was
exporting just 0.6 per cent of the global manufacturing output. It has now
moved upto close to 2 per cent. The Chinese had come down to 2.1 per
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 13
cent and moved upto 6 per cent of the global output. Now, the two graphs
are again rising. Inevitably, some other countries’ graphs are coming down.
So, if we look into the future, this is inevitable and this is not just the National
Informatics Centre (NIC) report. This is something that you could look into
upto 20 years ago. This is the reality, from that point of time. If that is so,
then one conclusion is that Indians need not bother too much about China,
or not lose sleep over it. I do not lose sleep that China is ahead of us. It
was always ahead of us in some areas, like manufacturing etc. In terms of
income and economic capability, it is ahead of us today – it will remain
ahead of us. It is not the end of everything when you consider a nation, a
power and international relationships.
The second is, ‘What sort of international system are we seeing that
is evolving or is there?’ We learnt a lot. We were told that the world was bi-
polar during or when the Cold War was on. I could never understand that
fully. Thirty eight countries on one side and thirteen countries on the other
side, and 148 outside it, do not make the World bi-polar. India and China
remained outside it, inspite of the early years of the Soviet-China military
alliance. By the late 1950’s, it was very clear that they were no longer
working together. In fact, all declassified documents tell us that the
leadership was privately almost abusive to each other. Whatever the World
was, we want to know what the World is today, and which way it is going in
this landscape? Where does China fit in and how will China deal with that
international system? One view is that the World is becoming multi-polar.
There are countries who want the world to become multi-polar. The leading
countries that are seeking multi-polarity are China, Russia, France and
some of the others. Many Indians talk about multi-polarity because we
don’t like the word uni polar. Bi-polar is finished, I am not too sure whether
multi-polarity is the right term. What then is the right term that we would
like to see in the future?
I think the reality today is still that the world is poly centric. A large
number of centres of power, some bigger some smaller, but in a globalised
14 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
world what you see is strictly speaking a poly centric world. But the difference
is that when China talks about multi-polarity, what comes out of many
writings and statements is in fact that multi-polarity at the global level will
be based on uni-polar Asia, with China at the head. Because from that
perspective only it can match up to the United States which still runs, not a
uni-polar World, but a uni-polar system of the Euro-Atlantic countries. You
have here, not very complex but essentially two clear set of countries, not
blocs – because they have an intense economic, social and other
connections with each other. So, you are not going to see the return of a
Cold War, certainly not the type that existed before. But you see here a
different type of an international model that will emerge. What emerges,
will depend on ‘major powers’ who will have that influence and the ‘thinkers’
who will think about this in a greater or lesser degree.
China’s belief at the moment is that the US policies are trying to contain
it. The US believes that China is a future problem area, not a threat; yet,
with whom they must cooperate. I believe that China is trying to undermine
the US power so that its own rise in international system is facilitated. In
that undermining of the United States, it gets very uncomfortable and wants
to do lots of things with those countries with whom the US seeks better
relationship. I will give you two examples a little later.
What is happening specifically to China itself, is important. We all
tend to look at this economic growth and infrastructure and such things
that go on. I wonder that how much of that infra structure that one saw,
stands today. There was a time when I took 2½ hrs drive to reach from
Beijing to the Great Wall. Just seven years later, it took me just 45 minutes
to get to the same place, because of the type of infrastructure that is coming
up now. Perfectly good buildings on the Main Street of Beijing were pulled
down and re-built so that now they look completely modern. Not just in
Beijing but also in the outlying cities. That is yet to percolate down into the
rural areas. I am not talking about the political system. I will leave that out
for the time being because that itself has strong impact on many things.
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 15
But it did ‘acquire’, as it started to modernise particularly. It ‘acquired’ the
East Coast. The area to the east of the Great Wall started to become
prosperous and affluent in the beginning. And in the process, with their
traditional ability, China started to invest a lot more into the ‘periphery’ at
that time which is still within the Chinese territorial boundary i.e. Tibet and
Xingjian. They thought that they had actually now assimilated and controlled
the old periphery, which now became part of the new core, and therefore
they stepped out ahead of that. Ahead of that, at different times, then is
Central Asia. While Obama said Af-Pak, I would say, for China it is Pak-Af.
Pakistan from the very beginning, from 1950’s in fact, has been a strong
one. The reasons were very clear. We in India tend to believe that the
Chinese are doing this to raise a counter to India, perhaps they may have
had some such thought about containment of India, and therefore Pakistan
is a part of that. I don’t think that is really true. I am not saying that it is not
part of the process. But I think that is not the major reason as to why China
started to support Pakistan, to the extent of giving nuclear weapons, nuclear
material and missiles – eighty per cent of weapons of Pakistan military are
of Chinese origin. The Chinese weapons are now high technology, so
Pakistan now also gets high technology weapons. The reason is to give
Pakistan a degree of autonomy from the US influence. Therefore, when
the influence is increased, the Chinese just step back a little, and wait it
out. You know very well that the US history runs on a four year cycle. With
every change of the President, you will have things changing and you get
new opportunities. Pakistan in the last 50 years has been the ‘Frontline’
state three times. The other three times, it has been under ‘severe
sanctions’. So that is the fluctuating type of relationship that the United
States has with others.
The Chinese maintain a steady constant relationship at a little odd
level, but substantive. If you ask the Pakistanis, they will tell you that China
is an all weather friend. And, they have been so. Although, China when it
agreed in 1965 to provide weapons, after asking a question to say, ‘Are
you serious about fighting?’ When they were told yes, they said alright, in
16 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
that case we will help. But when Ayub Khan flew down on a secret mission
on 19
th
September, during the 1965 war to Beijing, with a request that
China should step up its pressure on India and the border, the Chinese
actually told them that at the highest level that ‘you must keep fighting’.
And, if you are losing on the plains, go back into the hills. Their own model
of Mao’s people’s war is what was advocated. Of course, one view is that
Sandhurst qualified Field Marshal had not particularly liked the idea of
going back to the hills and fighting a guerilla warfare for an endless period
of time, because there was nothing internal, really speaking in this case.
But that is what it is.
The US relationships, the US policies, therefore, have a major bearing
on how China’s rise is going to be. Is it likely to be an opportunity or a
challenge? It does not mean that countries like India should not have a
closer relationship with the US. But to be conscious of the fact, that as
long as we understand that the Chinese ‘grand strategy’ is focused on the
United States as a point of reference. Therefore, the US policies and its
relationship with other countries, which could add to that power or subtract
from that power, that becomes then the rational method of the Chinese
looking at the World, and also their own rise.
The periphery as I mentioned has been shifting further and further.
So, if the periphery includes our neighbourhood like Bangladesh, Myanmar
– Pakistan of course is a de-facto ally, that periphery has now gone much
further. This is an old dream of the Chinese, which goes back to perhaps
the earlier part of the 20
th
Century definitely. But certainly, after PRC came
into being to be the leader of the World, if possible; if that was not possible,
to be the leader, at that time in 1950’s of the Afro Asian world. That is
where India was the competitor. In fact China could not rise upto it, and
that upset Mao Tse Tung extremely. From that perspective, therefore, he
developed a slight amount of personal dislike for the Indian Prime Minister
who had charisma and everything else. Mao could not understand why
Nehru got so much attention, despite his many achievements. Not only in
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 17
Afro Asian thing, but also in the Non Aligned movement, they could not find
a foothold. In 1991, in our discussion, I told the State Secretary of China,
“Since you pursue an independent policy, why don’t you sit in the Non-
Aligned movement?” He said, “we are thinking of joining as an observer.” So
we have a choice on siding on a specific issue rather than anything else. In
last two decades we have seen what was periphery – incorporated fully into
China, or it was believed that it was fully incorporated and assimilated, i.e.
Tibet and Xingjian. Events of the last year, and this year indicate that it is not
so. While it remains within the boundaries of China’s territories, this is a
problem that is going to take a long time to solve. This is likely to be one of
the fault lines between China and India.
The Chinese look at it only from their perspective. Indians, by and large
also tend to look at it from other side’s perspective, a little more than our
own side of the perspective. But, when you get these out of the way and see
what the reality is, at least my view is, and I have talked to my Chinese
friends again and again over the last 18 years: ‘Kindly create conditions that
these 1,80,000 (Tibetan) refugees can go back, at least those who want to
go back. They are the people who belong to Tibet. Many of them want to go
back. There was an agreement between India and China in 1954, that culture
etc would be promoted, not changed. Whereas these refugees, who are
virtually in their second generation, could be a potential flash point in future,
which the Government of India may not be able to control. It may not even
know when it starts. I think, we need to think over this very carefully because,
I certainly did not expect that there would be disturbances in Tibet, of the
type as we saw last year. We find that even in Xingjian, the call came from
Turkey that legal rights must be maintained. Why? Going back to the ancient
Turkey linkages – not Islamic linkages incidentally. Islamic linkage in Xingjian
is actually from Pakistan, which the Chinese have opposed and stopped.
The only time that they got a little annoyed with Pakistan was on that issue.
There is one other point I want to say about the word ‘strategic challenge’
before I get to the end of it. This is a term that I used the day I became
18 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Director, IDSA, it happened to be a day, when the Press was present and I
did say, “China is India’s long term strategic challenge”. And 22 years later,
I am willing to repeat that. China is India’s strategic challenge. Unfortunately,
the press next morning said, “The new Director IDSA says, China is a new
threat.” I find a great difference between a ‘challenge’ and a ‘threat’. I had a
Senior Colonel of the PLA in a conference in 1999 in Sweden, holding forth
to say that India says that, “China is a threat, they are lying” and all such
things. That officer was full of ‘josh’. So, finally I had to tell him with the
Swedish Prime Minister sitting in the Chair, “I don’t think, we think that you
are a threat. You are not a threat because we will make sure that, unlike
1962, you don’t become a threat. Well, all that we have to do is to defend
ourselves.” Please understand that China is not a threat; China is a potential
challenge.
Now that China’s military is growing in a massive way, people are
forgetting that once you have this immense infusion of high technology
into a system, how far the Chinese military system will be able to absorb
that technology and use it is still a question mark. I will put another 5 to 10
years. But in terms of systems, there is no dearth of it. Whichever ones or
sources you look today, this is so. 96 per cent of their weapons, including
nuclear weapons and missiles, have no relevance for a country which is
far away. People talk about power projection. That power projection is still
being limited to the sea, to a certain distance, where in any case they claim
many islands. It’s not so much power projection but a change in doctrine
and changing strategy, in line with their expectations from the new military
technologies. For example, China’s White Paper of 19 December 2004,
categorically says very officially and clearly, that we are planning to fight a
local border war, which is very logical and that we are going to win that
local border war with command of the ‘sea’ and command of the ‘air’ and
the use of the ‘strategic forces’. The army will be reduced and streamlined
basically for defence. The term, ‘command of the air’, was last used in
1923. Even the United States does not use that sort of language today. This
is the official Chinese White Paper on Defence, we are not talking of scholar’s
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 19
point of view or interpretations. I don’t even have to interpret this. ‘Command
of the Sea’ again is something that people like Mahan and people like
Gorshkov had talked of. No modern countries are talking of this. This is one
Country which is talking of this. This is the way we are going to keep limited
the local border war, but on the ground; in the air we will go on the offensive
and defensive. How many countries will be able to withstand this type of
military pressure. No country can stand the type of military pressure that
the United States is capable of exercising. Let us leave the United States
out. But, China certainly runs at ‘Number two’ power in the World,
economically and otherwise and now as a military power. In Asia, it is the
biggest military, biggest military spender, and now has the most recent
technology into it. To give a very simple example. India one day, in about 10-
12 years from today, will have 210 Sukhoi 30’s, China today has 400, will go
on to have 450 in the next two years. So, that is the kind of scale that we are
talking about. We have the first Airborne Early Warning System (AWAC),
the Israelis delivered to us a few months ago – they have five of them already
in use, and one of them has already been transferred to Pakistan. One
could go on but I do not want to talk about their military capability. They are
very clear on this issue. There used to be some confusion amongst the
scholars earlier because when the original form of modernisation was written,
the military modernisation appeared at ‘Number Four’. This was interpreted
wrongly in my view, and I kept arguing at that time that this is not the
‘sequence’. These are just four items. You cannot modernise a military unless
you have a strong enough economy. Military systems do not come free
anymore, even by the superpower. Therefore, everything else is linked in a
more continuous manner.
As far as new things are concerned, they have already improved; but
their nuclear arsenal has not changed basically in the last 30 years. What
has changed is the ability to create and shoot down Satellites in the air. It
will have vast impact on the nature of future war, which is tending to shift
more and more reliance on ‘Space’. Only three countries like the USA,
Russia and China, which have an anti Satellite capability, demonstrate it.
20 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
They have also gone into what Blue Ribbons Commissioner of the US had
actually suggested to the American President way back in 1988, that with
the accuracies that we are getting on our ballistic missiles, we should be
able to start thinking of using the ballistic missiles with conventional
warheads. Not much attention was paid to this Commission by the United
States. It was strange, because normally Blue Ribbon Commissions have
to be implemented, but the Chinese have learnt their lesson. About a
thousand of such missiles are deployed on to Taiwan. The impact of the
conventional missiles is actually much more psychological and political,
than mere kinetic. Although with higher accuracy, you can target a very
specific area. About 15000 missiles have been fired in wars since 1943
and everytime they were used, there was enormous impact on the political
psychological side and also on the military side. We talk a great deal about
1991 Gulf War. The United States and its allies flew about 1,17,000 combat
sorties during that War. 16 per cent of those sorties were aimed at finding
and hitting the ‘scuds’. The largest quantum of air effort was spent in that
war was on ‘scuds’. Iraq fired 87 of them with questionable results. They
knocked off many fixed launching sites. They did not get a single mobile
launcher – not even one. 16 per cent of 1,17,000 combat sorties is a fair
amount of effort with the highest capable aircraft that they had.
So the signals are very clear. The neighbours better look out, think
what you want to do about it. Therefore, there comes a question. In the
last few years, one finds the Chinese statements and Chinese actions to
be a lot more assertive than what they were earlier. How do I see it? That’s
roughly my ending point. Because, the first half of 1990’s, they were very
nervous. But now they are clearly very assertive towards India. Let’s just
talk of China-India. At that time, they went into two agreements – 1993 and
1996. They are not denying them, but they are not moving for any action
on those. What was agreed upon between China and India was that we
would try and solve the border issues but meanwhile lets demarcate the
Line of Actual Control (LAC). Now from 1993, it is 2009 – there is very little
movement. We can’t demarcate the LAC because the Chinese are not very
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 21
keen on it. You are not going to get a solution on the boundary and the
territorial question any time soon.
I have two propositions here. First is the question, which I keep asking,
‘Why can’t we demarcate the Line of Actual Control?’ It is difficult on the
Himalayas, but certainly not if we try. A wonderful answer was given for the
first time by a very senior person in the Government in Beijing. I had pressed
him for the answer, saying that people ask me this question as Director,
IDSA. Why don’t you get on with this? Are we not moving sufficiently or are
the Chinese not serious about it? His answer to me was, “Mr Singh, it’s
going to take a long time.” I asked, if he would like to share the reason with
me? He said, “Yes. The trouble in your Country is that your Government
keeps changing too fast.” I said, certainly it changes every 5 years by and
large. But are you waiting for a Government that will last 20 years before
you actually demarcate the LAC. You knew this, even when you signed the
Agreement. You signed the Agreement because at that time you wanted to
appear friendly with India and, therefore, India meant much at that time.
We were under sanctions from the United States, so we looked like an
obvious ‘Number two’ to the leader. India is ‘Number three’ country in the
World today. And in next 20 years, the Russian and European population
is going to go down completely, the Japanese is going down rapidly, the
Chinese will go down a little bit but they have a large population, like us.
India is still increasing its population although not at the same rate at what
we were earlier. That makes it a problem. All I would say is that, I see no
evidence, and experts are sitting here from both sides from China and
India, I don’t see any incentive for China to settle the boundary question,
nor any incentive to demarcate the LAC. If I read my history right, the Sino-
Soviet-Russian border problems have existed for 170 odd years. This is a
problem that is only 60 years old. So, let us wait for 100 years. We are both
old civilizations, we can manage. The more we talk about solving the border
dispute, we are actually giving a leverage to Beijing to make some little
effort to raise the level a little bit. We never heard Tawang being part of the
problem in the last 45 or 50 years. Where did it come from? If they wanted
22 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Tawang in 1962, they could have stopped just at Tawang, rather than carrying
onto Mc Mahon Line, while criticising Mc Mahon Line.
Under these conditions, the second problem is that I have been trying
to re-look at the 1962 War. Three or four books have been published by
the Chinese on the War. I hope somebody can help us in understanding
what is written there. Unfortunately, and I hope I am wrong, that this recent
assertiveness ties up chronologically at least with a fact that India-US
relations have come much closer. In fact, you can go back to 2003, and
then 2005. After which, raising strategic partnership, actually there has
been additional pressures from the Chinese side. Part of that rise in
pressure has been because this is the period when India-US relations
have actually improved. There are also pressures on India and many other
countries because the US influence and control in Pakistan is increasing.
Pakistan is in a state of instability. So, while the US is there for a variety of
reasons, which would serve the interest of everybody, especially if the
nuclear weapons can be kept under control by somebody –Pakistan Army,
we hope!!
So here is a stable rising India; and a declining economy, a declining
society in Pakistan next door – both close to the United States from a
totally different perspective. In both cases, China sees a problem and
therefore, needs to do something. Therefore, options for India, under these
circumstances are fairly clear. There is a word that I feel has been grossly
understood – ‘Non Alignment’. But that is a word that explains what the
best option for India ought to be; the United States on one side and China
on the other side. Because ‘Non Alignment’ is different from ‘Non Aligned
Movement’. My understanding of history is that this term was accepted by
the Indian political leadership, at least for the Congress, not the Muslim
League, in 1938. It is not the product of the Cold War. That again doesn’t
mean neutrality either. We can say, strategic autonomy. We can use any
other word you like. But India is also placed in a unique position to be able
to deal with China’s rise, not in opposition to it, but in working with it. So
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 23
there is an area where we can have sufficient cooperation. While we address
our own specific challenge, which is Comprehensive National Development
which no elected government can ignore. Under the circumstances, therefore,
China’s rise is to be welcomed and strategic challenge has to be understood.
I think we are capable of doing that.
To encapsulate that into just two words, ‘India should seek to have a
policy of cooperation with China, which is in force; but at the same time,
cooperate but ‘insure’? How does that ‘insurance’ come in? You have a
credible deterrent available. So, you have ‘insurance’ partly for that purpose.
The infra structure being improved in the Himalayas, the Chinese are
complaining about it. They expect that while they are building these beautiful
railway lines all the way, and they plan to build more railway lines, that we
are not watching and what are the implications of those things? Our aim
should be; Number one, to avoid any potential conflict or clashes with
China, not by ‘giving in’ anything, but to maintain the ‘status quo’ on the
frontiers. For which the answer lies in the demarcation of LAC. You can
even forget about it for a long time. We have the Chief of the General
Staff, PLA saying in 1998, “This is going to take a long time.” That’s that.
So why do we need to go on and on. I think we should stop even this
bilateral dialogue on the borders. Because if it is non productive, then
minor concessions given here and there will not improve things. That will
make things worse in the long term.
China is a marvelous country, wonderful people, I have lots and lots of
friends there but governments don’t run on simple personal friendships. They
work on National interest. Our National interest and values are different.
That doesn’t mean that we would be in conflict. What we need is that we
need to understand this much more. I certainly take great pleasure in China’s
rise because its visible and I have seen it happening from end 1989, till the
last time I went there in 2002. It is great for a developing country that only 20
years earlier, before they started modernisation, they were in the middle of
24 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
the cultural revolution and what it caused. At the same time, China must
recognise that there are other civilizations too.
Now on the lighter side, I would like to end by saying one more thing. In
early 1970’s there was a book, which I picked up because its title caught
my eye: ‘India, China and the Ruins of Washington’. The thesis propounded
in the book is: Because the US had just opened upto China at that time in
1971-72, this scholar was trying to caution the Americans to say, ‘Hold on.
Open a book of History of China at the halfway point and you will get to the
Third Century BC. Open a book on Indian history, you will certainly come
up to Third or Fourth Century AD. If you open a book on the US history,
you may be lucky if you can open it at the Civil War.’
Thank you everybody.
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 25
PARTICIPANTS
Lieutenant General PK Singh, PVSM, AVSM (Retd) was
commissioned into 2 Field Regiment (SP) Artillery on 16 December 1967.
He retired as General Officer Commanding-in-Chief South Western
Command on 31 August 2008. He participated in 1971 Indo-Pak War and
was the Deputy Director General MI (Foreign Division) during Operation
Vijay. He assumed charge as the Director of the United Service Institution
of India, New Delhi on 1

January 2009.
Air Commodore Jasjit Singh, AVSM,VrC,VM (Retd) joined the
Indian Air Force in 1954 and retired in 1988. He served as the Director of
Operations of the Indian Air Force, before being deputed to the Institute
for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi, where he was Director from
1987 to 2001. Founder Director of the Centre for Strategic and International
Studies, he currently heads Centre for Air Power Studies, New Delhi.
Shri MK Rasgotra, IFS (Retd) was a Member of the Punjab Education
Service till September 1949, when he entered Indian Foreign Service. His
tenure as Foreign Secretary from 1982 to 1985 was marked by a renewal
of Indo-American relations, sustained negotiations with Pakistan and a
tentative opening to China. He was member of the UN Disarmament
Advisory Board from 1983-1990. In recognition of his long service to the
Nation, he was honoured with Padma Bhushan in 2002.
Lieutenant General VR Raghavan,PVSM,UYSM,AVSM (Retd) had
a distinguished career in the Indian Army and retired as Director General
of Military Operations. His combat experience included operations in wars
with Pakistan and China, and in counter-insurgency campaigns. He joined
26 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
the Delhi Policy Group as the founding Director. Presently, he is President,
Centre for Security Analyses and has been appointed Adviser of the newly
constituted International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and
Disarmament.
Professor Zhang Guihong is the Executive Director of the Centre for
South Asian Studies and the Centre for UN Studies at the Institute of
International Studies of Fudan University. He is a Council member of
China’s Association of South Asian Studies, China-India Friendship
Association, United Nations Association of China and Vice President of
Association of Asian Scholars in China. His major areas of research are
Sino-US-Indian relations, International Organisations and Asia-Pacific
security.
Professor Srikant Kondapalli, JNU is an Associate Professor in
Chinese Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University. He is also an Honorary
Fellow at Institute of Chinese Studies, Delhi and Research Associate at
the Centre for Chinese Studies, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.
He served at Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi for 12
years. He learnt Chinese language at Beijing language and Culture
University and was a post-Doctoral Visiting Fellow at People’s University,
Beijing from 1996-98. He was also a Visiting Professor at National Chergchi
University, Taipei in 2004 and a Visiting Fellow at China Contemporary
International Relations, Beijing in May 2007.
Lieutenant General (Army) Masahiro Kunimi (Retd) is the Special
Adviser Ocean Policy Research Foundation in Tokyo, Japan. He was the
First Director General of Cabinet Satellite Intelligence Centre, Cabinet Office
from April 2001 to March 2005. He served as the First Director General of
Defence Intelligence Headquarters, Ministry of Defence from January 1997
to December 1999.
Vice Admiral KK Nayyar, PVSM,AVSM (Retd) is a former Vice Chief
of the Indian Navy. He commanded both the Western and Eastern Fleets
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 27
of the Indian Navy. He also served as Flag Officer Commander-in-Chief,
Southern Naval Command. Post retirement he has been closely associated
with a number of think tanks dealing with international security issues. He
is the Founder President of National Maritime Foundation and the Forum
for Strategic and Security Studies, New Delhi. Currently, he is a Member
of the National Security Advisory Board.
Shri Mohan Guruswamy has wide ranging professional experience of
30 years. It includes teaching at the John F Kennedy, School of
Government, Harvard University, Northeastern University Business School,
Boston and the Administrative Staff College of India, Hyderabad. He was
Adviser to the Finance Minister, Government of India (1998-99) holding
the rank of Secretary on economic and financial issues. Presently, he is
the Chairman of Centre for Policy Alternatives, New Delhi, an independent
think tank focussed on policy analysis.
Ms Bethany Danyluk is an Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton, a USA
based strategy and consulting firm. She is a member of the International
Institute for Strategic Studies and Women in International Security. She
serves as a Managing Director of Finance for Young Professionals in
Foreign Policy .
Professor Aileen Baviera is currently Professor of Asian Studies at the
Asian Centre, University of Philippines. She was the Dean of the Asian
Centre (September 2003-October 2009) and Head of the Centre for
International Relations and Strategic Studies of the Philippine Foreign
Institute (1993-1998) and Executive Director of Philippines-China
Development Resource Centre (1998-91). She lectures regularly at the
Foreign Service Institute and the National Defence College, Philippines.
Shri Jayadeva Ranade (Retd) is a former Additional Secretary, Cabinet
Secretariat, Government of India.He is a seasoned China analyst with
over 25 years experience in the field. His foreign assignments have
includedBeijing and Hong Kong. His last foreignposting, prior to retirement
28 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
in late 2008,was as a Ministerin the Indian Embassy in Washington. He
is presently a Distinguished Fellow with the Centre for Air Power Studies.
Rear Admiral KR Menon (Retd) was a submarine specialist in the
Indian Navy. He retired in 1994 as the Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff
(Operations). He has participated in military CBM talks with neighbouring
countries and was in the first military delegation to Pakistan. He was also
a Member of the Arun Singh Committee to restructure the National Defence
set up in India and a Member of National Defence University Committee.
He is currently the Chairman of the Task Force on Net Assessment and
Simulation in the National Security Council.
Professor Han Hua is an Associated Professor and Director at the
Centre for Arms Control and Disarmament at the School of International
Studies at Peking University, China. She is an expert on International Arms
Control and Disarmament Politics, Foreign Policies in South Asian Countries
and US Politics and Foreign Policy in Asia Pacific region.
Professor Michael Pillsbury was educated at Standard University and
Columbia University. He studied bureaucratic politics with Roger Hilsman,
President Kennedy’s Intelligence Director at the State Department. During
the Reagan administration he was the Assistant Under Secretary of Defence
for Policy Planning and responsible for implementation of the programme
of covert aid known as the Reagan Doctrine. In 1975-76, his proposal at
the RAND Corporation, that the USA should establish intelligence and
military ties with China was publicly commended by Ronald Reagan, Henry
Kissinger and James Schlesinger. Later, that became the US policy during
the Carter and Reagan administrations.
Mr Yung Sheng Chao holds a bachelors degree from Fu Hsing Kang
College and Masters in Oral communication from Kansas University and
CSIS,USA. His dissertations include International Security and Military
Strategy, 2003; Peaceful-Rise Strategy in China, 2004;The Reliance and
Balance of the USA, China and Taiwan, 2005; and The Assessment of
RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 29
Military Strategy between Taiwan and China, 2006. He has participated in
numerous seminars and conferences on National Security and Military
Strategy of the USA and China.
Lieutenant General (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd) was
commissioned in the Japan Air Self Defence Force (JASDF) in March 1973.
He specialised as an Air Weapons Controller. He is a graduate of the US
Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB and the National Institute
for Defence Studies, Japan Defence Agency. He obtained Masters degree
in National Strategy and Security Studies from the US National War College.
He retired from JASDF in December 2007 as Commander, Air Development
and Test Command. Presently, he is General Adviser with the Electronics
Products and System and Group, Mitsubishi Electric Company.
Colonel (now Brigadier) Subodh Kumar was commissioned into
Army Air Defence in June 1982. He is a graduate of Defence Services
Staff College, Wellington and Higher Defence Management Course, College
of Defence Management, Secunderabad. He commanded 142 Air Defence
Regiment (SP). He was Senior Research Fellow at USI of India and carried
out research on issues related to militarisation of the outer Space. Presently,
he is Commander 786 (I) AD Brigade.
Shri K Raghunath, IFS (Retd) joined the Indian Foreign Service in
1962. After having held many diplomatic and other important assignments
during his long and distinguished career, he became India’s Foreign
Secretary in 1997, and later was India’s Ambassador to Russia in 2001.
Prior to becoming the Foreign Secretary, he was Secretary (East) from
1995-1997, in the Ministry of External Affairs, in which capacity he was
handling West Asia and dealing with Israel directly.
Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda (Retd) is a Director for the Okazaki
Institute and a Trustee of Research Institute of Peace and Security. He
was a Senior Fellow of Asia Centre and JF Kennedy School of Government
of the Harvard, and a Guest Professor of Faculty of Policy Management of
30 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Keio University. He served in the Japan Marine Self Defence Force from
1968 to 1999.
Professor Jaeho Hwang received his PhD in International Relations
from the London School of Economics. He is a Research Fellow at the
Centre for Security and Strategy within the Korean Institute for Defence
Analyses. He is now a Visiting Research Fellow at Yonei University and
Kyungnam University, and was earlier a Visiting Research Fellow at
University of Leeds, China Foreign Affairs and University of Melbourne.
Professor Sujit Dutta holds the Mahatma Gandhi Chair at the Nelson
Mandela Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Jamia Millia University,
Delhi. Till May 2009, he was Senior Fellow and Head of the East Asian
Studies at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA), New
Delhi. He has been a member of the India-China Eminent Persons Group
(2001-2005) and the National Security Council Task Force on China (2006-
07). He was a Senior Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace,
Washington DC (1997-98).
Shri Shiv Shankar menon, IFS (Retd) started his career with Indian
Foreign Service in 1972. He has served with distinction in every portfolio
held by him at the Ministry of External Affairs and in the Indian embassies
in Beijing , Vienna and Tokyo. Later, he was an Adviser to the Atomic
Energy Commission. He has been Indian Ambassador to China and Israel
and High Commissioner to Sri Lanka. He is a former Foreign Secretary of
India. Currently he is the National Security Adviser.
RISE OF CHINA
FIRST SESSION
Chairman Shri MK Rasgotra, IFS (Retd)
First Paper Lieutenant General V R Raghavan,
PVSM,UYSM,AVSM (Retd)
Second Paper Prof Zhang Guihong, Fudan University, China
Third Paper Prof Srikant Kondapalli, JNU
Fourth Paper Lt Gen (Army) Masahiro Kunimi (Retd),
Okazaki Institute , Japan
Discussion
RISE OF CHINA 33
Session I: First Paper
Lieutenant General VR Raghavan, PVSM, USYSM, AVSM
(Retd)
The rise to major power status of China has evoked great admiration. But
it has also led to anxieties, not only amongst major powers, but also amongst
its neighbours. One sees, in some ways, a long historical process in the
rise of China. One well known historian had said, “By some natural law, in
every Century there seems to emerge a country with power, the will and
intellectual moral impetus to shape the international system according to
its own values”. He, for example, highlights that 17
th
Century was led by
France under Richelieu, created the idea of nation state and national
interest. We go on to 18
th
Century and see the Great Britain and the whole
notion of balance of power, in 19
th
Century, Austria with Matternich and the
idea of concert of nations, in 20
th
Century, indisputably the United States;
which continues to influence international relations decisively and will
continue to do so.
In the 21
st
Century, as the Keynote address indicated this morning,
and this learned audience knows very well, the centre of gravity of global,
geopolitical power is clearly shifting eastwards to Asia. China, Japan and
India, and the economic power houses of East Asia, form the basis of this
change. China remains undoubtedly the most powerful, in Asia. If we go
by the four criteria, which experts apply to determine what makes a great
power, the generally agreed four criteria are: Population and territory,
resources (economic capability), political stability and military strength. By
any of these criteria, China will rank as the top power in Asia and even
outside Asia.
34 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
The recent economic global meltdown quite clearly shows that China
has been more capable than major powers in managing such crises. To
quote the US Treasury Secretary Geithner, “China has led the global
economic recovery.” At the last G 20 Summit, China’s voice was the most
powerful in critiquing the Western countries on their policy of profligate
spending. China’s unwillingness to regulate its currency to the global
currencies, particularly to the Dollar, is a cause for economic discomfort,
even as it demonstrates its capacity to chart its own course, disregarding
others’ needs.
Well informed and experienced as you are, you know of Chinese policy
positions on major issues. How is the rapidly rising power going to be dealt
with? How is it going to be engaged? How might India and China engage
themselves with each other? Chinese policy trends can be seen through
some major global positions which China has taken:-
(a)First is on the question of Taiwan, Tibet and Xingjian. Without
placing a value judgment on the Chinese position, Chinese anxieties
about what they call ‘splittism’ i.e. the centrifugal forces in China, is a
major issue that everybody must bear in mind.
(b)There is a talk of ‘string of pearls’ – the Chinese bases in many
places, seeking security of energy flows. You are all aware or what is
otherwise called China’s Malacca conundrum – the Malacca straits
issue.
(c)Chinese muscular policies in South China Sea.
(d)Military and technology transfers of a sensitive nature, which have
de-stabilised regions on its periphery.
(e)Economic assistance and aid, in return for energy supplies in Africa
and other places. Recently, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)
has signed a massive contract for Chinese infrastructure in return for
mineral supply. One Western paper called it, ‘A Country on Sale’. The
RISE OF CHINA 35
IMF has cautioned the DRC that at this rate, their debt re-payment
would become more difficult. That is the power of economic aid and
grants which the Chinese are making. China’s aid to states, clearly in
violation of internationally accepted human rights standards, also
disturbs many.
(f)There is a question of Chinese response to North Korea’s nuclear
ambitions and positions. While China is in the 6-Party talks with DPRK,
its positions have been softer than the rest of the 5 members. Linked
with this is the Chinese position on ‘sanctions’ against Iran for its
nuclear transgressions. China has taken an independent line and has
been against imposing sanctions.
(g)There is a question of China’s military modernisation and
capabilities in ‘Space’.
On each of these issues a Chinese policy image can be built. The
Chinese themselves, will have a finger to point at other countries.
Global power shifts have not occurred very frequently and rarely have
they occurred peacefully. China’s rise and the power shift, therefore, is
watched very carefully. It produces extreme response from right wing to
left wing. Let me give you two examples. In a survey conducted in Japan,
between March and June this year, there were some conclusions. Initially,
there were three perceptions in Japan, as given by that survey. First; that
China behaves unpredictably. Second; its intentions are at best
questionable. Third; the Japanese influence in China is very low. That is
one perception. There is another perception from the USA of an extreme
kind. On 25
th
March this year in the University of Chicago, the well known
commentator Mearsheimer said, and I quote him, “There will be a Cold
War between the USA and China. To stop China becoming the greatest
power, the US will need to become allies with Japan, Russia, India, South
Korea, Vietnam and Singapore, to form a balancing coalition around China.”
36 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Now this is another extreme of opinion. It just shows the anxieties that are
created when a power shift is taking place.
Therefore, the question being asked today is: In 20 years time; around
2030, when China, if it maintains the current economic trend lines, will
certainly overtake the US economy, what will be the position? What will be
the status of internal stability in China? Will China be a cooperative and
stabilising power? Or, will it be a threatening and de-stabilising power? As
a result we see ‘hedging strategies’ by its neighbours and other powers,
Japan’s massive investments in China, and at the same time continuing
to retain strong dependence on the USA, on security issues. Take for
example Australia, with its massive increase in mineral exports to China
which benefits the Australian economy, even as it forms part of a US led
security alliance. Australia has made a strategic shift, from one of purely
continental defence to an out of area capacity, and is building a new level
of the Armed Forces. It was the Australians who talked of the proposal for
a ‘Strategic Quadrilateral’ and the East Asian Summits etc. These are all
responses to their anxieties on China.
How will the USA deal with China? Two approaches are under
consideration. The first is of, ‘Managed Great Power Relations’. In the
year 2000, RAND Corporation produced a study done by Zalmay Khalilzad
who later on became the Ambassador to Afghanistan etc. He looked at
two options in that study, of ‘containment’ and ‘engagement’. He
recommended that the United States should follow a policy combining both
containment and engagement. He called it ‘Congagement’, an interesting
phrase! If we look at the manner in which the US Presidents have dealt
with China from Mr Nixon to Clinton, to Mr Bush and now Mr Obama, the
notion of managed great power relations can be seen to operate. We saw
President George W Bush attempting a balancing role between Tokyo and
Beijing. We saw the EU pushing sale of arms to China, against the US
advice, because they knew that market was important to them.
RISE OF CHINA 37
How was this managed during the Cold War? Let me give you a
quotation from Henry Kissinger’s Memoirs. He talks of ‘The Cold War
Triangle’ between the USA, Russia and China. I quote, “We had to walk a
narrow path. We would make those agreements with the Soviet Union
which we considered in our national interest. But we would give no
assurance of a condominium, and we would resist any attempts by Moscow
to achieve hegemony over China or elsewhere. We would keep China
informed of our negotiations with the Soviet Union and in considerable
detail, we would take account of Peking’s views. We would conclude no
agreement at the expense of Chinese interests but we would not give
Peking veto over our actions. We followed this scrupulously – although
since Moscow was the stronger party we briefed it much less precisely or
frequently.” How would the USA, which is now economically stressed,
deal with a resurgent China? Allies are anxious and China’s neighbours
are watching. Both are coming to their own conclusions.
The second approach is of ‘Strategic Assurance’. President Mr Obama
has talked of no containment and not doing anything to harm China’s
interest. That policy has already come under severe criticism because it is
feared by some that it will only re-inforce Chinese aggressive behaviour or
assertive conduct. As the Keynote speaker mentioned and the Indian Prime
Minister said in Washington, China’s assertive behaviour disturbs India.
Let me, therefore, read out what a US major newspaper, Washington Post,
has said only last week, “Administrative officials seem to believe that the
era of great-power competition is over. Unfortunately, that is not the reality
in Asia. Contrary to optimistic predictions just a decade ago, China is
behaving exactly as one would expect a great power to behave. As it has
grown richer, China has used its wealth to build a stronger and more capable
military. As its military power has grown, so have its ambitions. This is
especially true of its naval ambitions. Not so long ago, our China experts
believed it was absurd for China to aspire to a “blue-water” navy capable
of operating far from its shores.” The article goes on to quote the Secretary
38 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
of Defence Robert Gates and the Pacific Area Commander Admiral Willard
saying similar things.
Under the circumstances, what would Chinese and Indian reactions
be in the years to come? There is a tug of war which we see reflected in
the media etc. Both are jockeying for regional and global influence. Both
are being sought as partners in the emerging security architecture. In my
opinion the fears of a conflict between China and India are overstated.
Both, despite many disagreements, have joint interests and are joined in
their commitments. They have shared commitments, for example, on ‘No
First Use’ of nuclear weapons. They are committed not to test nuclear
weapons. They both await the US to ratify the CTBT before they will think
of joining it. Both have combined joint naval and military exercises. They
share views on climate change and emissions policy.
It is useful to note a World Bank Report of 2007, titled, ‘Dancing with
the Giants: China, India and the Global Economy’. The Report “The rise of
China and India as major trading nations in manufacturing and services
will affect world markets, systems….substantially, and hence change the
environment in which other countries make their economic decisions.” This
has already begun to happen.
China’s rise to great power position is not in doubt. The approaches
its neighbours and great powers adopt to meet the ‘Rise of China’, with the
two options that I have indicated, will determine not only their relations
with China, but the strategic balance in this Century.
RISE OF CHINA 39
Session I: Second Paper
Professor Zhang Guihong
During my presentation, I will all answer the four questions listed in Session
1 agenda, one by one. First question is: ‘What is China’s grand strategy?’
China’s grand strategy can be summarised, ‘As peaceful development for
or towards harmonious world, which highlights the connection between
domestic development and foreign relations’. In early 1980’s, China’s leader
Deng Xio Ping put up the concept of ‘peace and development’. Since 2003,
China’s new leadership, Hu-Jintao and Weng-Jiabao have proposed
several new concepts, such as; peaceful rise, peaceful development and
harmonious world. After lot of comments, evaluation and debate in
Academia and the Government, these concepts have been guidelines of
the Chinese foreign policy in the new Century. I integrate these three
concepts in one phrase, ‘peaceful development for harmonious world.’ Here,
‘peaceful development’ is the means and the road to achieve the goal and
ideal of a ‘harmonious world’. This grand strategy is deeply rooted in
Chinese cultural tradition, socio economic situation and international
environment. Here, I would like to evaluate the main features and
dimensions of this grand strategy.
(a)First is the domestic situation as the background, and then comes
international environment. After nearly 30 years of economic reform
and opening up, China’s new leadership believes that China should
have a balanced, scientific and sustainable development model.
Current GDP, environment friendly development and people first policy
etc; this new understanding and thinking about development is termed
Beijing ‘consensus’. Internationally, the new Chinese leadership sees
40 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
‘peace and development’ as the new theme of the era. To put forward
a series of new concepts, such as ‘new security concept’. We mean
three things: common development, international responsibility,
harmoni ous regi on etc. The new strategy i s focussi ng on
multilateralism, consultation and democratisation.
(b)Second point is about the aims and the means of this grand
strategy. The goal of the grand strategy is not only to maintain national
security and integrity or sovereignty, but it is also to construct a
favourabl e and stabl e nati onal envi ronment for economi c
development. Stability of the surrounding area and international system
is crucial to achieve this goal. With regard to the means, the
Government has attached more importance to economy, energy, public
diplomacy, multilateral approach and mutually beneficial cooperation.
(c) Third point concerns intention and capability of the grand strategy.
According to this new grand strategy, China is more likely than before
to take initiative and make use of its growing economic capabilities,
to construct preferred international environment rathar than merely
adapting itself to it. China’s new leadership has more confidence to
express Chinese interests and concerns and actively make proposals
and suggestions for international affairs. As you can see, everytime
Chinese top leaders visit foreign countries to address international
conferences, they respond and make some proposals on international
affairs. As interest and influence expands worldwide, China today is
emphasising more on international contribution and responsibility, e.g.,
in the field of UN Peacekeeping operations and assistance to African
countries.
The second question is: ‘Is China’s political system compatible with
uninterrupted economic growth?’ China’s ‘one ruling party’ system has
inherent advantage as well as disadvantage in promoting economic growth.
The advantages are: the ability of social mobilisation, continuum of the
RISE OF CHINA 41
government and its policy, political stability and administrative efficiency
etc. On the other hand, the disadvantages include: lack of transparency
and freedom, weaker civil society, serious corruption, high administrative
costs. China today confronts a lot of problems and challenges including
rising unemployment, latent official corruption, weak legal system, growing
regional disparity, increasing gap between the rich and the poor and unequal
access to education, population problem, religious bottlenecks and severe
environment problems. All these problems can only be resolved through
deepening of reforms for the proposed building of market economy and a
‘rule of law’ of state.
The third question: ‘Is China’s rise peaceful?’ Yes, from my
understanding. There are always doubts challenging China’s peaceful rise.
Some argue that the concept of peaceful rise is unlikely; because so far in
world history, there has never been any power that has risen peacefully.
According to international theory, peace is not maintained just by your own
will. It is a business involving at least two actors. Others think that given
the values and origins of the political system, China’s successful rise may
not be acceptable to some countries, particularly for the USA. They are
also suspicious about China’s commitment to peaceful development and
environment of the world. They think, that the key programme is about
how the Chinese leaders and people will deal with this issue, 20 years
later. Others believe that China’s strong quest for energy and resources
may come in conflict with national interests of some countries. However, I
hold an optimistic view on the prospects of China’s rise which is based on
the following reasons:-
(a) Looking back sixty years, when China was weak and poor from
1949 to 1979, it was involved in military conflicts and wars with the
USA, Soviet Union, India and Vietnam. When China became strong
and a leader since 1980, things have changed.
42 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
(b) Peaceful and stable foreign relations, otherwise the result will be a
losing game instead of a win-win situation.
(c) China has benefitted from the current international system. Though
there are some unfair and unequal characterstics of the current
international system, China believes that it can be improved gradually
through reforms. So, China prefers to promote innovation of
international system in a cooperative way rather than to be a
revolutionary.
(d) As the USA has declined relatively, it cannot easily use force as a
confrontational means, to either contain China or to prevent its rise.
President Obama said ten days ago in Tokyo, that the US will not
seek to contain China. According to the US-China joint statement
issued in Beijing a week ago, the US reiterated that, it welcomed a
strong, prosperous and successful China that played a greater role in
international affairs. China welcomes the USA and Asia Pacific nations
that contribute to peace, stability and prosperity in the region. Both
sides reiterated that they were committed to building a positive,
cooperative and comprehensive US-China relationship for the 21
st
Century. The two countries will take concrete actions to steadily build
a partnership to address common challenges.
(e) Europe, Russia and some other major powers make positive
comments on China’s demonstration of peaceful rise and I hope, our
Indian friends will have similar and more positive attitude on China’s
rise after this Conference.
The last question: ‘What are China’s politico-diplomatic moves in
support of her Grand strategy’? According to my understanding, the
considered view in China is that there are four dimensions or features of
foreign policy which form the framework of political-diplomatic moves in
support of her grand strategy. They are :-
RISE OF CHINA 43
(a) The first dimension is: China regards its relationship with its
neighbouring countries as a priority. So, the first feature is to try and
establish a good neighbourhood over land and sea in the neighbouring
countries.
(b) The second dimension is: China regards being largest developing
country as the basis of their foreign policy. China tries to stand up with
and support the developing countries.
(c) The third dimension is: China regards its relations with major
powers including the USA, Russia, European Union and India as a
key to its foreign policy. China tries to build up different kinds of
partnerships with these major powers.
(d)The fourth dimension is: The international arena where China sees
space for itself, where it can contribute by playing a greater role. China
seeks to actively participate and make its contribution. These actions
form the approach of its political-diplomatic moves, including several
other points, e.g. settling border issues with neighbouring countries
through negotiations. As you can see that we have solved border
problems with Russia and Myanmar. Second is to increase economic
relations independently with countries in the region. China has been
deeply involved in regional integration in the South East Asia and the
Central Asia and tries to act in cooperation with South Asian countries
to promote prosperity in the region.
(e)The last point is, to become a more active member of the global
and regional institutions.
RISE OF CHINA 45
Session I : Third Paper
Professor Srikanth Kondapalli
Abstract
While China had not issued an explicit grand strategic outline of its
current and future course of action domestically and internationally,
several recent pronouncements by the Chinese leadership and other
stakeholders indicate that certain interpretations could be made of
these statements. Initially, as the Common Programme of September
1949 and subsequently the four constitutions (till 1982 and since
amended) indicated China’s objectives domestically are to enhance
substantially GDP figures. In the early 1980s, Deng Xiaoping
emphasised on “economic development at the centre” and advocated
“hiding capabilities and biding for time”. As the 16
th
Chinese
Communist Party Congress in 2002 and reiterated by the 17
th
Party
Congress in 2007, further emphasised, China’s goal is to build a
“well-off society” by 2020 – that of reaching the socio-economic
standards of the developed Western European countries. All these
are to convert the nation into a “rich country and strong army”.
Internationally, China had emphasised, for a long time in the past,
on minimalist foreign policy goals of stressing and protecting its
perceived sovereignty and territorial integrity and maintaining its
perspective. However, as a consequence of the rise of China in
hard and soft power aspects, new approaches are noticed in China’s
external responses that point towards maximalist perspectives, viz.,
active role in international political and economic institutions, “Beijing
Consensus”, G-2, etc. It is argued in this paper that although China’s
sights are now set at the strategic levels and it has been concertedly
preparing for the realisation of “strategic opportunities”, its ability to
realise these goals are likely to be challenged by rising countries in
the region, in addition to the US.
46 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Introduction
While China had not issued any explicit grand strategic outline of its current
and future course of action domestically and internationally, several recent
pronouncements by the Chinese leadership and other stakeholders indicate
that certain interpretations could be made of these statements. Initially, as
the Common Programme of September 1949 and subsequently the four
constitutions (till 1982, and since amended) indicated China’s objectives
domestically are to consolidate the Communist Party’s rule in the country
and enhance substantially GDP figures. Although this blueprint had
substantially altered – given the political movements related to Great Leap
Forward and the Cultural Revolution - a common thread among these
“two line” struggles indicated to the relevance, nay centrality, of the
Communist Party’s rule as well as the necessity for furthering the agricultural
and industrial output, while at the same time protecting perceived claims
on Tibet, Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau issues.
In the early 1980s, Deng Xiaoping emphasised on “economic
development at the centre” and advocated “hiding capabilities and biding
for time”. Several Chinese premiers and presidents had mentioned that
the GDP figures would be quadrupled. As President Hu Jintao mentioned
in his address to the Bo Ao Forum for Asia in April 2004, the Chinese
government intends to “quadruple the 2000 GDP to 4 trillion US dollars
with a per capita GDP of 3,000 US dollars”.
1
As the 16
th
Chinese Communist
Party (CCP) Congress in 2002 and reiterated by the 17
th
Party Congress in
2007, further emphasised, China’s goal is to build a “well-off society” by
2020 – that of reaching the socio-economic standards of the developed
Western European countries. All these are to convert the nation into a
“rich country and a strong army”.
2
To some extent these were met – not
only were Hong Kong and Macau united under China in 1997 and 1999
respectively, but also that the GDP had been increased to an estimated
$4.6 trillion in 2009– making China as the third largest economy after the
United States and Japan. Next year, it is estimated that China would be
RISE OF CHINA 47
able to displace Japan in these economic figures. Chinese government
statistics indicated that, despite the global financial meltdown in 2008-09,
China in 2009 was able to maintain 8.7 per cent economic growth rate and
exported $2 trillion worth of goods (while Germany exported $1.17 trillion).
Also, surging exports contributed to the enhancement in the coffers of
China – estimated at more than $2.2 trillion by 2009. Militarily as well,
China made significant progress and with the $70 billion in official defence
budget in 2009, it becomes the largest spender in Asia.
Internationally, China had emphasised, for a long time in the past, on
minimalist foreign policy goals of stressing and protecting its perceived
sovereignty and territorial integrity and maintaining its perspective. As a
consequence, it was only after Taiwan was displaced from the United
Nations in 1971 that the People’s Republic of China (PRC) was able to
take its ‘rightful’ place at this international forum with veto power.
Considerable diplomatic pressure was mounted on Hong Kong, Macau,
Tibet, Xinjiang and Inner Mongolian issues as well. Also, foreign policy
was made to serve the national strategy of economic development – by
attracting foreign direct investment, technology and sustaining exports.
However, as a consequence of the rise of China in hard and soft power
aspects, new approaches are noticed in China’s external responses that
point towards moving into maximalist foreign policy perspectives, viz., active
role in international political and economic institutions, ‘Beijing Consensus’,
G-2, etc. These provide scope for the flowering of more articulate China’s
grand strategy formulations in the future.
This paper analyses the main strands in the Chinese debates on
China’s grand strategy, its rise in the recent two decades, and argues that
although China’s sights are now set at the strategic levels and it has been
concertedly preparing for the realisation of ‘strategic opportunities’, its ability
to realise these goals are likely to be challenged by rising countries in the
region, in addition to the US. Nevertheless, a few caveats are in order.
While the concept of grand strategy originated in the US
3
, and while very
48 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
few Chinese historically delved on such subjects with the exception of
some Chinese scholars in the last decade, a few Chinese concepts come
closer to this phenomenon, viz., “grand strategy” (da zhanlue), great power
diplomacy (daguo waijiao), strategy (zhanlue), etc.
4
Secondly, it appears
that the Chinese discourse on the subject has similar themes as in the
western literature, although several Chinese still consider that they have
to further develop the theoretical contours of such a phenomenon.
5
In this
sense, as a developing country, China is yet to unveil full-fledged and
comprehensive grand strategic formulations and can be said that this is
still in the making.
6
China’s Grand Strategy
As a country which insists on learning from the ancient strategies, China is
legion in attracting global attention in terms of grand strategy, although as
a relatively developing country in the recent period, it is still in the process
of unveiling major aspects of such a strategy.
7
In the pre-modern and
modern periods, several Chinese have indicated to their interest in grand
strategy, although largely not cohesive and ‘grand’ in scale. Thus, Sun Zi
in the sixth century BC is credited to have triggered the Chinese minds on
overcoming the adversaries through strategy and without using force. Wei
Yuan, in the light of the battering with which China was subjected by the
Western powers during the late Qing dynasty period, had proposed
principles for the rejuvenation of the country. The Hundred Days of reform
of 1898 proved to be inconclusive in the fast changing fortunes of the
empire. Likewise, the May Fourth Movement, which galvanised several
sections of the population, proved inconclusive. Dr Sun Yat-sen, considered
by both CCP and the Kuomintang (KMT) as their founding father, proposed
‘Three Principles of People’s Livelihood’ (with nationalism, democracy and
livelihood), which appeared comprehensive solutions for those times.
Subsequently, the country became a victim of the Japanese inroads and
civil war, which forbid any grand strategy formulations. After the People’s
Republic of China (PRC) was established in October 1949, conditions were
RISE OF CHINA 49
conducive for such strategies, although the country was soon drawn into
wars with the US in the Korean Peninsula (1951-53), with India (1962), the
then Soviet Union (1969) and with Vietnam (1979), even as intermittent
skirmishes with Taiwan confined China to the East Asia box.
Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai and others did provide for strategic thinking
and inputs between 1949-76 as reflected in the ‘leaning to one side’ (towards
the then Soviet Union), Five Principles for Peaceful Co-existence or ‘good
neighbourliness’ policy and Three World construct. Yet, the weak material
base for such grand design proved costly for China till Deng Xiaoping’s
reform and opening up provided for certain concrete inputs such as is
reflected in the concept of ‘taoguang yanghui’ (hiding capabilities and biding
for time/maintaining a low profile). Essentially, this slogan, unveiled in 1989,
called for focussing on economic development, engaging all countries for
the smooth flow of investments and technologies into China and even
postponing conflicts for a long time except, on core sovereignty issues.
In the last three decades of reform and opening up, China also debated
the grand strategic contours. Essentially including the minimalist foreign
policy positions of Mao and others (viz., the core interests - sovereignty
over Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao and ‘lost territories’), Deng’s China
(inclusive of Jiang Zemin from 1989-2004 and currently under Hu Jintao),
emboldened, as it were, with the increases in comprehensive national power
of the country, unveiled a grand strategy.
8
Although still in the making,
such a vision envisaged firstly enhancing the material wealth of the country
– with economic development at the centre and under the CCP’s rule.
Disintegration of the Soviet Union that reduced military threats from the
North, favourable reform policies, engagement with the outside world,
multilateral efforts with several ‘partners’ globally and changes in the CCP
policies
9
- all provided for inputs into the Chinese grand strategy and
implementation.
10
Indeed, China had unveiled – with relative successes –
several concepts and initiated steps in this regard.
11
Mention should be
made of the occupation of the Paracels from Vietnam in 1974, Mischief
50 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Reef from the Philippines in 1988, expansion in the exclusive economic
zone in 1992, commons security concept, new security concept, and
multilateral initiatives in the political and security fields (such as with
Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and East Asian Summit) and in the
economic fields (Bo Ao Forum), conducted grand events such as Beijing
Olympics in August 2008
12
, etc.
To summarise and outline the major components of China’s grand
strategy, in brief, the Chinese leadership believes in enhancing firstly its
economic and military profile in the international system so as to form the
foundation for its concerted role in the international order. Three concepts
recur in the Chinese debates, viz., international system, international pattern
and the international order. While the first two indicate to an objective
situation of interactions between states (and also non-state actors), the
third concept - order – indicates to the subjective desires of the country
concerned. In China’s case, as reflected in the six white paper issued on
national defence and the 16
th
and 17
th
Party Congresses reports
13
, it can
be argued that China presently wants to maintain and support the current
international strategic situation so as to build a “well-off society” by 2020.
At the same time, it wants to retain its autonomy in the international relations
and even become a great power, specifically in the light of the decline of
the US in events such as Iraq and Afghanistan.
14
China’s premier Wen
Jiabao, at the dinner meeting with the US President during the latter’s visit
to Beijing in November 2009, also rejected the idea of G-2.
China Rise Phenomenon
The above grand formulations have to be fulfilled by the comprehensive
rise of China. The phenomenon of China rise is of recent origin, although
some Chinese trace back such rise to the halcyon days of the Middle
Kingdom. Nevertheless, it includes enhancements in the comprehensive
national power of the country, specifically in the last decade of Chinese
economic, military and soft power increase.
15
Several Chinese scholars
RISE OF CHINA 51
debated the phenomenon and strategies for China’s rise in the last decade.
Enlisted below are some main ideas in China.
The concept of ‘peaceful rise’ (heping jueqi) of China was proposed
by Zheng Bijian, vice president of the CCP Central Party School at Bo Ao
Forum for Asia in 2003. However, a year before this speech, nearly twenty
Chinese scholars reportedly had worked out the major arguments of this
thesis to systematically counter the security concerns expressed by China’s
neighbours and those in the West.
16
Zheng Bijian in his speech at the
BoAo Forum of Asia on 25 April 2004 observed candidly that China’s rise
may usher competition in the Asia-Pacific region, but argued that such
competition would take the path of “friendship, cooperation, mutual benefit
and win-win situation, not competition of arms buildup, or competition for
spheres of influence or hegemony”. He also advocated establishing
“communities of common interests” in East Asia and “sub-regional
mechanisms with different functions and features, and conduct flexible
cooperation to achieve marked results”. Subsequently, as the following
section indicates, several officials and scholars in China have reflected on
this phenomenon. However, to ward off any negative connotations that
‘rise’ indicates; in the discourse of late has been a tendency to rephrase
the phenomenon as merely ‘peace and development’.
A comprehensive description of China rise is provided by Men
Honghua, an associate professor at the international strategic research
institute of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Central Committee Party
School. Men argued that in explaining the complex phenomenon of China
rise, scholars and others in China and elsewhere have proposed different
theories as follows:
(a) ‘Zhongguo jiyu lun’ (Theory of China as a favourable opportunity);
(b) ‘Zhongguo gongxian lun’ (Theory of China contribution);
(c) ‘Zhongguo weixie lun’ (China threat theory);
52 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
(d) ‘Zhongguo bengkui lun’ (China collapse theory); and
(e) ‘Zhongguo jingji shuifen lun’ (China’s economic moisture (surplus
exaggeration) theory).
17
Each one of these theories, as is evident, in one way or the other
have shaped our understanding about the phenomenal changes that China
is undergoing not only in its domestic political, economic and military sectors
but also in its interactions with other countries at the regional and global
levels.
Ren Donglai traced the earliest work in China on peaceful rise
phenomenon to Yan Xuetong who wrote an article ‘Lengzhan hou Zhongguo
de duiwai anquan zhanlue’ (China’s external security strategy in the post
Cold War era) in the 8
th
issue of China Institute of Contemporary
International Relations journal in 1995. Yan discussed three main aspects
of China’s cultural tradition, national interests and strategic calculations.
More pronounced on the subject were the views of Yan in his 1997 co-
edited publication on ‘Zhongguo Jueqi: Guoji huanqing pinggu’ [China Rise:
International Environmental Assessment] (Tianjin People’s Publications,
1997). The concept had emerged in the light of ‘China threat theory’. Yan
defined ‘rise’ as the gap between the burgeoning strength of a large country
and the simultaneous reduction of other powerful nations or even
surpassing the strength of these latter powerful countries. So the crucial
words here are ‘catching up and surpassing’ and ‘acceleration’ in the power
of the rising country.
18
Yan Xuetong identified three main streams of thought in China and
elsewhere on this subject:
(a) ‘Zhongguo weixie lun’ [China threat theory] by scholars, mainly
outside China
(b) ‘Dache lilun’ [Hitchhike theory] by mainly Chinese scholars who
argued that since rising Germany and Japan failed quickly, it is better
RISE OF CHINA 53
for China to follow the path of avoiding opposition to the US hegemony.
(c) ‘Shidai butong lun’ [Distinct era theory] by ‘objective’ scholars who
viewed that in the current period, China should follow a policy of ‘good
neighbourliness’ and blend with the international system and avoid
using military force.
(d) ‘Xin renshi lun’ [New understanding theory] sported mainly by those
closer to the Chinese government who viewed current Chinese policy
as ‘economic construction at centre’ and that China will not contend
for hegemony with the US. It rules out use of force. Famous exponent
of this school is Zheng Bijian when he made a speech at Bo Ao Forum
in 2003.
19
A Chinese writer mentioned that under this concept China would strive
for international peace and all-round development of the country. According
to Zheng, ‘peaceful rise’ would be the national strategic principle in which
there are three sub clauses, as follows:
(a) Push forward with determination the path of socialist market
economy with Chinese characteristics and socialist political and
economic democratic system
(b) Promoting Chinese civilisational aspects, and
(c) Pursue overall regional, economic and social development and
harmonious growth of urban and countryside for building a well-off
society.
20
While some scholars have pointed out that the current “rise” of China
is its fourth such rise in its history, most of the accounts generally trace to
the last two decades. Nevertheless, the following two scholars’ assessments
are based on historical explanations, while the rest focus on contemporary
events. A revisionist analysis of historical events of the last 5,000 years
revealed to Xu Boyuan not an expansionistic empire from the two main
54 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Yellow and Yangtze river valley civilisations but that of cultural stability. Xu
argued that in an age of globalisation, cultural stability of the country would
be an asset.
21
Stating that of the 28 civilisations, 18 have disappeared
from earth, Zhou Bajun argued that 21
st
Century belongs to that of China.
Given the economic dynamism of the Asia-Pacific region, especially in
China, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, this region is poised to become
the focus of the world.
22
After following the debates within China and other countries, several
interesting themes were outlined by Dai Wenming and others in describing
the China rise phenomenon. Does the rise of China entail any negative
impact on others as mentioned in the ‘China threat’ theory? Is there a
specific ‘China experience’ that can be learnt or emulated by others,
specifically in the economic growth rates? Is there any specific ‘Chinese
contribution’ or ‘China opportunity’? Given the official rhetoric about China
being a responsible country, would this lead to a ‘strong China that does
not determine’? They bring about issues related to the ‘overheating’ of the
economy, economic restructuring, population ageing, critical energy and
environmental security aspects, and the like. They conclude, with
observations from scholars at Shanghai, that China has participated in
multilateral institutions, respected the United Nations mandates, entered
the World Trade Organisation, etc and these reflect its responsible
behaviour.
23
Luo Yuan, chairman of Strategy Research Institute of the PLA
Academy of Military Science, argued that China’s rise would result in
national cohesion and would make the country most powerful in the Asia-
Pacific region. He proposed three stages in such a rise:
(a) Construction [yingzao] stage in which China should promote
peaceful environment in its periphery and safeguard national
sovereignty and territorial integrity
(b) Moulding [suzao] stage in which China would pursue policies to
RISE OF CHINA 55
shape the events and regain lost territories
(c) Plan and control [jinglue] stage in which by political [or military ?]
means the international community accepts China’s efforts in building
a new political economic international order that ensures strategic
balance and stability.
Luo stated that of all these three stages, currently China is at the first
stage mentioned above. He contended that emphasis on peace does not
mean that China should neglect the defence sector. Indeed it should
strengthen its defence forces. In his support, Luo cites an old proverb
“youguo wufang, guojiang buguo” [a country without defence would not
remain a country]. On the other hand, even if China rises without any military
backing, it would not be able to retain its influence long and will certainly
decline. The experience of Qing Dynasty clearly validates this assertion,
according to Luo. Therefore, for a rising China, the military should have to
provide ‘escort’ functions. Indeed, the only existing powerful countries in
the world are those with strong military strength. Luo advocates that higher
attention should be paid to the defence sector during the course of China’s
rise. This is conducive for China to achieve higher strategic ability to not
only wage a dozen local wars successfully but, more importantly, restrain
a war from breaking. The second aspect that China can possess, by
emphasising military modernisation, is strategic autonomy that ensures
independence from adversary’s control of strategic resources. The third
aspect that Luo bestows on China, on the path to rapid rise with defence
preparation, is its strong international coordinating [xietiao] ability. Luo warns,
China if it neglects/forgets war preparation, it would face disaster in its
path to peaceful rise [heping jueqi, wangzhan biwei].
24
For China’s rise in the next 30-50 years, it should abide by the rules of
the global order and UN resolutions, achieve internal stability and avoid
Tiananmen Square kind of incidents and resolve internal socio-economic
problems like river-water diversion, grain production, urban migration, etc.
56 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Li Zizheng here implies that China and India, which have huge potential,
should learn from the lessons of the US unilateral actions.
25
According to Professor Gu Haibing of the People’s University, China
needs to adopt a great power strategy for the coming years as the
international influence of China is set to grow phenomenally. He argues
that keeping in view China’s large territory, resources, faster economic
growth rates, the number of millionaires in the country, living standards,
and increase in its strength, China needs to follow its own ‘survival’ strategy.
While a small power would adopt a strategy of allying with other powers for
its security, China, being a large power, should adopt a great power strategy
in which there should be a coordination between the concepts of strong/
powerful nation (qiangguo), rich people (fumin) and environment (huanqing
meijing). Most important, according to Gu, is the emphasis placed on
qiangguo (powerful nation) than to the other elements. Therefore, China
should choose this as the ‘fulcrum’ of all its strategies and enhance the
military capabilities of the country to ensure the country’s ‘independence’.
He does agree that there exists antagonistic contradiction between the co-
existence of a strong nation and rich people or environmental problems as
a result of building up of a powerful nation, but argues that unity between
the two can be arrived at through proper coordination. Gu notes that China’s
rise faces stiff competition [qiangli jingzheng] from India and from the
resourceful Japan.
26
Conclusion
China’s comprehensive rise in the global power matrix had kindled debates
on China’s grand strategy in the recent period. For the first time in its history,
China is being counted internationally due to its rise in CNP terms – it is
respected or feared – a prophesy Napoleon spoke about in the 19
th
century.
As China entered into globalisation phase, international security and
strategic contours are increasingly getting enmeshed with China as a major
factor. However, there are several fault lines in the linear progress of China’s
RISE OF CHINA 57
CNP, viz., CCP stability, widening ethnic tensions, growing income inequalities
and popular unrest, growing middle-class aspirations, environmental
degradation, and dependency on high-seas and trans-boundary regions for
trade and energy supplies. Nevertheless, the Chinese leadership had taken
some corrective measures to wriggle out of these challenges. For instance,
efforts are being made to broad-base the 73 million-cadre CCP. Private
entrepreneurs are now being admitted into the party and the relevant
constitutional provisions are being amended. Secondly, to counter the three
evils (separatism, extremism and splittism), para-military forces are being
strengthened and counter-terrorism exercises launched with concerned
countries. Thirdly, China is also taking initiatives in projecting power as
reflected in the peace-keeping operations abroad, counter-piracy operations
off the coast of Somalia, and naval and air force build-up. Yet, the guidelines
of Deng Xiaoping on biding for time and regional security dynamics could
challenge the balance - thus posing concerns for China’s rise in the long-
term perspective. China’s stance on Indian border areas, and on Japan and
Vietnam is instructive in this regard.
End Notes
1 See for the full text of Hu Jintao’s speech on April 24, 2004 at <http://
www.boaoforum.org/boao/2004nh/cd/t20040424_733981.shtml> accessed on December
20, 2004
2 For an extensive discussion on this topic see Hu Angang ed. Zhongguo Da Zhanlue
(China’s Grand Strategy) (Hangzhou: Zhejiang People’s Publications, 2002) pp. 3-37
3 See Paul Kennedy (ed.), Grand Strategies in War and Peace (New Haven: Yale
University Press, 1991)
4 See, for instance, Xiao Jialing and Tang Xianxing eds. Daguo Waijiao: Lilun,
juece,tiaozhan (Great Power Diplomacy: Theory, decision-making and challenge) (Shishi
Publications, Shanghai, 2003) 2 volumes; Hu Angang ed. Zhongguo Da Zhanlue (China’s
58 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Grand Strategy) (Hangzhou: Zhejiang People’s Publications, 2002) and Shi Yinhong, Zhanlue
Wenti Sanshi Bain – Zhongguo Duiwai Zhanlue Sikao (Thirty Studies on Strategy –
Reflections on the External Strategic of China) (Beijing: People’s University Publications,
2008)
5Avery Goldstein had argued that such a grand strategy started emerging in the Chinese
thinking from 1996 after several ad hoc measures before by the leadership. See “The
Diplomatic Face of China’s Grand Strategy: A Rising Power’s Emerging Choice” The
China Quarterly (2001) pp.835-64
6According to David Finkelstein, crucial to understanding the subject are a few
fundamentals, viz., well defined objectives; development of concepts, approaches and
concrete policies to achieve these objectives; development of capacities for implementation;
coordination and adjustment. See his “Commentary on China’s External Grand Strategy”
38th Taiwan-U.S. Conference on Contemporary China, The Brookings Institution &
National Chengchi University, July 14-15, 2009
7 See Michael D. Swaine and Ashley J. Tellis, Interpreting China’s Grand Strategy: Past,
Present, and Future (Santa Monica, CA: RAND, 2000)
8 See Di Dongsheng, “Continuities and Changes: A Comparative Study on China’s New
Grand Strategy” Historia Actual Online No.12 (2007), pp. 7-18 and Chen Mumin, “Going
Global: The Chinese Elite’s Views of Security Strategy in the 1990s ” Asian Perspective
vol. 29 no. 2 pp. (2005) 133-77
9These latter included Deng Xiaoping’s Four Cardinal Principles of making the CCP as
the focus; Jiang Zemin’s ideas on “three represents” to broad base the CCP; and currently
Hu Jintao’s “harmonious world” to reduce tensions domestically and internationally.
10Liselotte Odgaard had argued that in the post-Cold War period, China, taking a cue
from Matternich’s grand strategy, is struggling with the outside world in order to avoid
being labelled as a secondary power in the international order. See “Metternich and China’s
Post-Cold War Grand strategy” Institute for Strategy, Faculty of Strategy and Military
Operations, Royal Danish Defence College, Copenhagen, 2009
RISE OF CHINA 59
11 See Philip C. Saunders, “China’s Global Activism: Strategy, Drivers, and Tools” Institute
for National Strategic Studies, US NDU Occasional Paper 4 October 2006
12 On this aspect and how Olympics contributed to enhancing China’s public diplomacy,
see Qiu Huafei, “ Public Diplomacy: China’s Grand Foreign Strategy” PD Case Study:
Beijing Olympics (Issue 1 Winter 2009) at <www.publicdiplomacy magazine.org>
13 See for the six white papers at <http://www.china.org.cn> or <http://
english.chinamil.com.cn> See also the US Department of Defense papers on the military
power of China at <http://www.dod.gov>
14 See Wang Yuan-Kang, “China’s Grand Strategy and US Primacy: Is China balancing
American power?” The Brooking Institution July 2006
15 See Michael E. Brown, Owen R. Cote, Jr., Sean M. Lynn-Jones and Steven E. Miller
(eds.), The Rise of China (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2000); and Ahn Byung-Joon,
“The Rise of China and the Future of East Asian Integration” Asia-Pacific Review vol. 11
no. 2 (2004) pp. 18-35
16 For an excellent analysis, see Ting Yong-Kang, “’Peaceful Ascendancy’ and Cross-
Straits Relations” at <http://www.peaceforum.org.tw> accessed on January 4, 2005
17 Men Honghua, “Zhongguo heping jueqi de guoji zhanlue kuangjia” (International
strategic framework of China’s peaceful rise) Shijie Jingji yu Zhengzhi (World Economy
& Politics) (Beijing) No. 6 (2004). The “China threat theory” reflects to the concerns
expressed by scholars outside China on the concerted military modernisation programme,
specifically in the military doctrinal changes towards offensive orientations (like the PLA’s
debates on “pre-emptive strike strategy” (xianfa zhiren)), emphasis placed on navy, air
force, rapid response forces and strategic rocket forces and to the lack of transparency in
the military fields, especially in the defence budget. The “China collapse theory” is traced
to Gordon Chang’s work, The Coming Collapse of China (New York: Random House,
2001).
18 Ren Donglai, “Daguo jueqi de zhidu guangjia he sixiang chuantong” (The system
frame and ideological tradition of Great Power rise) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 12,
60 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
2004 (originally published in Shanghai Academy of Social Science publication “Cong Lishi
Jiaodu kan Daguo jueqi: Bijiao yu Jiejian” (Looking from the view point of Great Power
Rise: Comparisons and Lessons Drawn) Wujiang, Jiangsu Province, March 2004). (All
references to Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue are at <http://www.cpd.org.cn> accessed on July
23, 2005). Ren noted, citing Mandelbaum’s thesis, that a country can decisively march to
become a power in the international field when, in the process of rising, defeats another
major power through military means.
19 Yan Xuetong, “Heping jueqi yu baozhang heping- Jianlun Zhongguo jueqi de zhanlue
yu celue” (Peaceful rise and safeguarding peace- A brief theoretical note on the strategy
and policy of China rise) Guoji Wenti Yanjiu (Studies on International Issues) No. 3 (2004)
20 Zheng Bijian cited at “’Zhongguo heping jueqi’ lun youlai” (Origins of the theory of
‘China’s peaceful rise’” Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 18, 2004 (originally published in
Guoji Xianqu Daobao). Zheng insisted here that China should follow a foreign policy of
peace and development in which it would not bully or exploit other countries, in addition
to formulating a new security concept that stresses mutual security and mutual benefit to
all concerned.
21 Xu Boyuan, “Zhongguo heping jueqi de lishi yiju” (The historical essence of China’s
peaceful rise) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 27, 2004
22 Zhou Bajun, “’Zhongguo jueqi’ yiwei shenme?” (What is the meaning of ‘China rise’?)
Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue (Chinese Political Studies) May 26, 2005 (originally printed in
Hong Kong Business Daily). Zhou traced Chinese strength in terms of rise in Gross
Domestic Product figures after the reform and opening policies were launched in 1978.
23 Dai Wenming, et.al. “Zhongguo de weilai xingxiang: Fennu de minzu haishi lixing de
daguo?” (The future image of China: Angry nation or a rational great power?) Zhongguo
Zhengzhi Xue (Chinese Political Studies) September 14, 2004
24 See for the views of several Chinese scholars cited above, Tao Deyan and Zhang Binyang,
“Zhuanjia zonglun Zhongguo heping jueqi jinglue” Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 18,
2004 (originally published in Guoji Xianqu Daobao)
RISE OF CHINA 61
25 Li Zizheng cited at “Jueqi de Zhongguo ying geng lijie shijie xianghu yicun zhongyao
xing” (Rising China should understand the significance of mutual global co-existence)
Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue June 22, 2004
26 “Zhongguo ying xuanze daguo zhanlue: Fang Zhongguo Renmin daxue jiashou Gu
Haibing” (China needs to adopt a great power strategy: Interview with Chinese People’s
University professor Gu Haibing) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue June 29, 2004 (article originally
published in China Economic Times)
RISE OF CHINA 63
Session I : Fourth Paper
Lieutenant General Masahiro Kunimi (Retd)
My presentation will address the same questions from a different point of
view.
What is China’s grand strategy?
China is parading the national slogan of “A great resurgence of the Chinese
race, since the Chinese Revolution of 1911”. It may not be clear what is
meant by “the great resurgence of the Chinese race”, but observing the
GDP of the world’s nations in 1820, it is said that China held the first rank
with 28.7 per cent, India the second with 16 per cent, France the third with
5.4 per cent, and the USA the fourth with 1.8 per cent. China seems to be
aiming at a second advent of that position.
At the end of 1970’s, it took one important decision about reformation
and liberation policy. By holding fast to a ruling system by the Communist
Party, and through reformation and liberation policies, China now seeks
an identity as “a rich and powerful nation,” or, to use a different term, to
become, both, an economic and a military power. After 30 years, China
still continues this policy.
On 1 October, 2009, the Chinese showed their power plus their political
system. It had been predicted that China would be accomplishing social
change because of it’s economic growth and progress in modernisation,
would pursue capitalism, democracy, and peace. However, the achievement
of economic development in China does not directly lead to political reforms
of the Chinese Communist Party. Even within the Party there is strong
resistance to political reforms. However, while China becomes strong and
64 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
affluent, the dictatorial inclination of the Communist Party is becoming
pronounced – which strengthens its challenging posture as a new power
in the leadership of Asia.
Peaceful rise or not, China continues to pursue economic growth for
future development through reforms and liberation policies. In order to
sustain its economic development and domestic stability, China tries to
ward off regional destabilisation. It is essential for China to secure resources
such as petroleum and iron ore that underpin economic growth. To maintain
resources, China is deepening relations with non-democratic and anti-USA
countries, and against such countries that compete with China in the race
to secure resources. The likelihood of China being vigorously antagonistic
is quite high. To maintain domestic stability, China would cut off trade with
countries that criticise the policy of Chinese Communist Party.
In the interests of rising China, the Chinese Communist Party is to
formulate individual, logical self-justifying policies, and to resolutely put
even belligerent policies into practice in order to gain victory over competing
nations. However, China avoids decisive confrontation with great powers
such as the USA and Russia. This point is very important because China
started Vietnamese war first, because at that time China wanted to teach
Vietnam a lesson. Now, how does China have a right to give a lesson to
Vietnam is asked by the United Nation’s General Assembly? Will only the
Chinese Communist Party decide so or not? The NATO countries also
want to know it. This is very important.
What are China’s politico-diplomatic moves in support of
its grand strategy?
The basis of diplomatic strategy is omni directional partnership to serve
“economic interests.” China aims at “multipolarisation” and economic
“globalisation” in the future as distinctive from the “bipolar structure” of the
Cold War era and the “uni-polar, multi-power” structure of the post Cold
War period. At the collapse of the former Soviet Union, no country could
RISE OF CHINA 65
directly point out to the USA. China wants to be similar in form to that of
former Soviet Union, directly pointing to the USA and irritating the US
superpower. China takes a serious view of putting the United States into a
multi-polar group. At the same time, while China achieves affluence by
cooperation with the USA amidst a globalised economy, it tries to soothe
the US from perceiving excessive danger.
Politically and diplomatically such factors as a possible change in the
situation in the Korean peninsula, occasioned by collapse of North Korea,
China-Taiwan relations, and the worsening relationship with India and Japan
may cast shadows onto the brightly lit Chinese grand strategy.
Just now the Chinese professor mentioned about the visit of President
Obama to China, and had a joint communiqué. The reason why these two
countries agreed was because China wants to be one of the countries
who holds a share in world affairs, and also in regional and domestic issues.
But, on the other hand it is important to know that President Obama did
not mention about Chinese human rights, minority policies and also did
not ask for transparency in military upgradations.
Can hegemony be reduced peacefully or not?
China aims at being an economic power and a military power, and eventually
“a wealth and power” state. To attain this aim China intends to become a
regional power in Asia first, with the objective of becoming a power in the
world equal to the US. Now, China is at the same level as that of Japan’s
GDP, but in next fifteen years, Chinese GDP would be equal to that of the
USA. In the process of becoming an economic power, there would be
friction with the international community over the scramble for resources
and the rules of the market.
On the way to becoming a military power, China attempts to instill
fear into countries of the world with its space and missile strategy. It is also
upgrading cyber-terrorism capability and strengthening, and modernising
66 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
its conventional forces by focussing on the PLA Navy and Air Force. The
Chinese Communist Party has been insisting that China is right in every
respect, and that other parties are wrong with regard to any wars and
disputes between China and the neighbouring countries post World War
II. This unyielding stance will continue. The theory of justifying disputes
and China being always in the right will be created by China and repeatedly
insisted upon to the world community.
The time when economic growth becomes stagnant, public security
becomes disorderly, and the people’s dissatisfaction with the Communist
Party becomes aggravated deserves attention. Presently, there is a lot of
dissatisfaction amongst people in China against the Chinese Central Policy,
and Chinese top leaders are having problems, not only in oversees political
and economic policy but mainly due to domestic issues. It requires attention
whether China would choose a way of becoming a cooperative partner in
the future in the arena of international politics, or becoming an element of
confusion.
At the end of my brief, I would like to conclude by saying that China is
facing a dilemma. It has to decide whether China would be a good stake
holder in international, regional and domestic issues or would it be going
on her own way to pursue ‘one’ Communist Party rule. We ask of China to
come together with us to share the responsibility of solving all the global,
regional and domestic issues jointly.
RISE OF CHINA 67
Discussion - Session I
Issue Raised
The increase in protest rallies in China progressively year after year
indicates dichotomy between their political system and market system of
economy being pursued today. What steps are being taken to bring about
political reforms to remove this dichotomy?
Responses
(a) China’s concept is, ‘socialist economy with Chinese characteristics’.
This system combines ‘market economy’ and Chinese ‘socialist
politics’. China’s development model is unique because it tries to
accommodate market economy, which is very popular in globalised
world today. So far it has helped the Chinese people to meet their
development challenges successfully. They have the wisdom to adjust
to such challenges and problems.
(b) The number of Chinese participating in the protests is very high –
1000 to 3000 people participate in each incident, which numbered
1,40,000 last year. This compelled the Chinese Central Party School
to initiate a project which has suggested that they need to move away
from some of the pitfalls of the ‘market economy’. Firstly, they
suggested the ‘marketisation of politics’ or ‘politicisation of the market’.
Between these two phenomena the Communist Party today is also
suggesting that the ‘protestors go to the court’ – to the Peoples
Proletariat, to deflect the protests and criticisms away from them.
Secondly, at the village level, elections are conducted in 800,000
villages. However, the key problem is that the Communist Party base
is at the ‘county’ level and not at the village level. Therefore, ‘county’
68 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
level is crucial but they are not conducting elections at the ‘county’
level. So that is one lacuna in the political reforms process. Since the
‘one’ person elected at the village elections will either become a ‘leader’
in the Communist Party or is already a ‘member’ – democratisation is
limited in that respect.
(c) In China, democracy would not be like the Indian democracy. It
will be a democracy with Chinese characteristics.
Issue Raised
What is the state of ‘Confucianism’ being adopted in China today? Since
the value system suggested by sage Confucius has helped the Chinese in
affecting many improvements and managing their economy so well, is it
possible to adapt such a good system in India?
Responses
(a) In China there are no religious beliefs. The Communist Party
members have no Gods. But ordinary people, who are apprehensive
about their future because of social developments and uncertainties,
can be seen going more and more to the temples – with some fear in
their hearts, to pray for their well being and happiness. But it is quite
different for other countries. Confucian values are important in Chinese
people’s daily lives. Chinese people go to temples to seek personal
happiness in their daily lives and not because of Confucian values or
being religious.
(b) The Chinese leadership follows the legalistic tradition and the
people follow Confucian values whereby they seek harmony and
happiness in their lives. Hu Jin Tao’s ‘harmonious world’ is also derived
from that. From the point of view of the ‘grand strategy’, the Chinese
leadership follows Tao’s philosophy and also takes the hard way of
‘politics’ by considering all things across the world and their Country.
RISE OF CHINA 69
(c) On the foreign policy front, Confucianism is at the top of the
framework, with Taoism and Buddhism also in it. Inside this framework,
there are many schools of thought. While, discussing Chinese foreign
policy and grand strategy, we can talk of one Tao i.e. The Emperor’s
Way, but it is not realistic either to impose or expect China to accept
any other system. In the international arena, ‘harmony’ is central
terminology but ‘Confucianism’ is the essential framework in its foreign
policy relationships with other countries.
Issue Raised
Is the current Communist Party ideology supportive and conducive to a
‘stand alone’ economic and military power?
Response
The influence of Party ideology is mainly on the communist party members.
The economic growth, the military modernisation and social policy depend
on Government policies and not on Party ideology. Ideology is a philosophy
which provides political direction to the whole Country, and not for giving
detailed economic or military policies.
Issue Raised
It seems that China loves ‘one ruling party’ system and is also talking about
Chinese political democratisation. Now, when the world is looking forward
to China becoming politically a democratic country, what are the conditions
which would facilitate transition of China into a politically democratic country
or would it continue to prefer ‘one ruling party’ system?
Responses
(a)Democracy is a very big concept. Different countries have different
mechanisms to promote democracy. Democracy can be a way of life,
it can be a political system and it can be a philosophy. In China, ‘one
ruling party’ system has lasted for a long time. It has it’s own reasons
70 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
for having one ruling party because of historical background and
political characteristics. Therefore, in near term, ‘one ruling party’
system is likely to continue.
(b)In China, there are some political reforms underway even within
the one ruling party system. It is called ‘inner democratisation’. There
are some improvements in election procedures to have more
candidates to select from or compete for the posts.
(c) Although China has one ruling party but there are other agencies
to check the policies of the ruling party. The Chinese political system
is so unique that it cannot copy any other democratic political party
systems which are complicated, big and different. Chinese people do
not want a multi-polar and multi-party political system; these are not
considered feasible. We must respect the existing situation and
Chinese characteristics while considering the process of political
democratisation.
Issue Raised
The Quadrilateral Cooperation Proposal from Australia involving the USA,
Australia and Japan, with the idea of bringing all the democracies together
in a value based cooperation, was quite obviously directed against China.
Since India had reservations on this proposal, what is the current Indian
thinking on it?
Response
The proposal came in the context of new awareness on the growing Chinese
influence and role. Unfortunately, the proposal was seen to have been
designed to create a group of countries which excluded China in this part
of the world. Any arrangement in this part of Asia which excludes China,
and creates another group, was obviously going to run into difficulties.
Rightly, the Chinese were the first to indicate their displeasure and anxiety;
and questioned why it was being done? The Chinese showed that they
RISE OF CHINA 71
were not happy, as the move was seen to be designed to isolate China.
Therefore, the proposal went into a terminal situation. It indicates that
China’s growing influence and objections, did put a spoke into some of the
proposals. Although before the Indian side could indicate, whether it was
willing or not, the proposal got scuttled.
Issue Raised
What is the Chinese perspective on ‘Rising India’? How are they viewing
India’s role in South Asia economically, strategically, and in its relationships
with other countries in the region? Is it possible for both the countries to
work together in future to evolve some cooperative strategies at various
levels?
Responses
(a)Firstly, China is happy in the ‘Rise of India’ because it will bring
some benefits to them also through economic cooperation. Secondly,
both China and India can contribute to the establishment of the Asian
community by reviving their ancient civilisations. Thirdly, China
recognises that India can play a dominant role in the Asian region
including South East Asia, East Asia and Central Asia. But China would
appreciate more if India plays a constructive role in terms of economic
development, political and regional stability. China sees an increase
in this kind of role in the coming years and supports it. China has
cooperated with India in some regional organisations, like Shanghai
Cooperation Organisation (SCO), Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation
(APEC) and other institutions.
(b)However, China has a history of having different views about
development in the Asia Pacific Region and would like to discuss its
role further in this regard.
72 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
(c) At the global level, China has very much similar positions and
interests as other countries on issues such as climate change,
environment protection etc.
(d) China has clearly stated that it supports India’s greater
role in the international community, including the UN Security Council.
This is what is stated by the top leaders in their meetings and joint
statements. China does not want to be an obstacle in India’s entry
into the UN Security Council. But, because UN Council reforms are
so complicated, presently there is no consensus on what kind of
country can become a new Security Council member. If China gives
clear support for India, it would raise complications in China’s relations
with Japan, Pakistan, Germany and other countries. It is also
suggested that if a country wants to play a more important role in
international community, before that, it would be better if it first plays
a constructive role in the regional and global affairs. A new Security
Council member does not mean that it has more ‘rights’ or ‘power’. It
means that the possibilities of enhanced duties towards the
international community would increase in the future.
(e) India and China are very important rising powers in the Asian region.
Close economic, political and military relations between them will bring
peace and prosperity to the region. If there are problems that remain
unresolved, then the region will not prosper.
RISE OF CHINA 73
Session I: Chairman’s Closing
Remarks
Ambassador MK Rasgotra
China’s ‘grand strategy’, has been explained at length and I will say nothing
about it. In my study of China’s policies, nations do not always mean what
they say. Stated policy is one thing, policies that are pursued in actual
practice are at variance with stated objectives. China understandably, wants
to be G1- Number One power in Asia – it is an understandable ambition. It
wants to be G2 in the world with the United States of America. This is also
an understandable ambition. Eventually, it may wish to become G1, but
there are many question marks there. So far as India is concerned, my
mind goes back to mid 1950’s when Jawahar Lal Nehru was vigorously
propagating the idea of ‘India-China Bhai-Bhai’ at Bandung. The Chinese
Premier Zhao en Lai met Mohammad Ali of Pakistan and told him, “We
have very serious problems with India. It’s a difficult country. It’s a big
country. We are going to have problems with India. Since, you have
problems with India, you and we should get together.” That is the beginning
of their de facto alliance.
Chinese say that India is a rising power in South Asia. The objective
is to confine and box India in South Asia. We need not quarrel with it. I
mean they have this objective. We will concede this objective, but we will
see what happens in the end. The time to watch in any period in history is
when new powers are rising. It is a time of uncertainty, instability, contention;
requiring new adjustments, so on and so forth.
74 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
During China’s revolution and stabilisation, first thirty years after 1950,
was the period of consolidation of revolutionary achievements. It was also
a period of several wars - China’s intervention in Korea, China’s war on
Vietnam, China’s war with India in 1962, China’s skirmishes with Russia.
One hopes that history will not be repeated. But we have to understand
China’s economic rise and military strengthening. Peaceful economic rise
and military modernisation go hand in hand – one reinforcing the other.
What I am saying is stated very clearly by the Chinese ‘policy makers’.
We had a study done on this subject in the Observers Research
Foundation (ORF) and we came to a conclusion that Chinese want to
increase their military strength because they want economic expansion.
National policies of governments in power are geared to one basic objective,
‘Promotion of the National interest’. I think that applies to China of today as
it applies to china of yore. I think in today’s World, China will pursue its
National interest, but conflict will arise when it seeks to pursue its National
interest at the expense of or trespassing the National interest of other
major countries in the region – Russia, India, Japan and South Korea to
name a few.
In the case of India, the China-Pakistan alliance and the military
cooperation between the two countries contributes to prolonging the
avoidable and unnecessary confrontation between India and Pakistan.
China’s moves in the power game for example are efforts that are meant
to undermine India’s deep, close historic, geographic and cultural relations
with that country. We will have to deal with that. At the same time we would
not like to come in conflict with China.
We want a relationship of friendship with China – economic and
commercial cooperation. China is a challenge in strategic terms, hopefully
not in the military terms in the long run, provided we prepare ourselves for
any kind of eventuality. But there is an opportunity. If China grows
prosperous, I think that prosperity will spread around in the neighbourhood,
in Asia.
RISE OF CHINA 75
My only concern is that in the present pursuit of multi-polarity or poly
centricity, China will not ignore that, not just in the world, but within Asia
also multi-polarity exists today. This is going to remain. If China’s rise is
entirely peaceful, everybody will want to be friends with China. But if China
continues to assert itself militarily, through daily pin pricks, which is totally
unnecessary and avoidable, it will bring no gain to it.
Our Prime Minister in his own very moderate and modest language
said, “China’s assertiveness – I don’t know why China feels it is necessary?”
There is this assertiveness in relation to India and towards Japan. If this
continues, then there is bound to be tension. Tension may not lead to
conflict hopefully, but tensions in Asia are not a happy development,
especially between two large countries. We are not in competition with
China. I think it was stated very clearly that China is number one in economic
and military terms and it will remain so for many years to come. We wish
China well, but any kind of avoidable, unnecessary, unprofitable
assertiveness vis-à-vis India will only give rise to tension. I hope that will
not be the story.
China today is an open country. It is no longer ‘a land of mystery’, as
it was fifty years ago or hundred years ago or several centuries ago. China
states its policies very clearly. Sometimes the underlying objectives are
not very clear but a closer study of what they say in words does reveal their
objectives. It is a good thing that our scholars like Professor Kondapalli
(and others) and former diplomats are engaged in the study of China. Our
commercial and business leaders are also becoming interested in China
and I appreciate very much that USI has organised this Seminar. I hope
that there will be many more such interactions in future.
I thank personally General PK Singh for associating me with this
particular Session. I thank all the Panellists.
Thank you.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF
SOFT POWER
SECOND SESSION
Chairman Vice Adm KK Nayyar, PVSM,AVSM
(Retd) Former Vice Chief of Naval Staff
First Paper Shri Mohan Guruswamy,
Centre for Policy Initiatives
Second Paper Ms Bethany Danyluk,
Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton, USA
Third Paper Professor Aileen Baviera,
University of the Philippines.
Fourth Paper Shri Jayadeva Ranade, IPS (Retd)
Discussion
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 79
Session II : Chairman’s
Opening Remarks
Vice Admiral KK Nayyar, PVSM, AVSM (Retd)
Former Vice Chief of Naval Staff
Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen, I always take the post lunch
attendees in these seminars as people who are seriously wedded to the
subject. Many years ago, while speaking at RAND in Santa Monica I was
questioned that some of my facts were not right. What I had said was that
if a country 2200 years ago decided to build a wall 6000 km long, 20 ft
wide, 20 ft high and then carried on building it for 1900 years, then we
ought to be taking anything which they said and did very seriously. That
perhaps explains the overkill of five or six seminars in a period of less than
10 days in Delhi on China. But having said that, we should take very
seriously what the Chinese do and say. There is no other way to describe
the bellicose statements which have emanated officially and semi-officially
from Beijing. Therefore, I wonder whether we have not been generous in
saying ‘opportunities’ in the title of this seminar, because there is ‘strategic
challenge’, alright. I do hope that the climate changes and may be some
opportunities would also arise. But the serious demeanour of Chinese
has not given us hope of many opportunities in the offing. We are very
lucky to have this distinguished panel to deal with the challenges, and
opportunities if they see any, this afternoon.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 81
Session II : First Paper
Shri Mohan Guruswamy
There is tremendous economic activity going around all over the world. As
a matter of fact there are 63 countries today in the world which are growing
at over 6 per cent. When we grow at 7 per cent, we get very excited.
Please note that out of 63 other countries that are growing over 6 per cent,
some unlikely countries like Ethiopia are growing at 11 per cent. The fastest
growing country in the world is Bhutan which is growing at 24.6 per cent.
Growth rate by itself, as our Prime Minister said, is not the entire game.
Naturally, he would say that because our growth rates have not been too
good compared to China. But even after making allowances for various
factors, I would say that 6 per cent growth rate is no big deal anymore
because developing world is growing at that pace. The important thing is
that the world is changing rapidly.
Coming to the main part of my talk, how do we keep our foreign
exchange reserves? Bulk of our reserves are kept in Dollars. Next is Euro
which is about 27 per cent. Whatever we say and do, our money is kept in
Western institutions. Many countries have tried to breach this monopoly
of the Dollar, which arrived after World War II. Only the European Union
(EU) has been able to make some inroads into it. That is because the EU
as a whole has a GDP which is more than the USA. Even they could not
do very much. Dollar is pretty much the king and whoever has to live in this
world has to factor that into account. In terms of actual current percentages
– 64 per cent of reserves were in US Dollar in 2008, 27 per cent in Euro,
rest do not matter – German Mark, British Pound, Japanese Yen and Swiss
82 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Franc, amounting to 3 per cent only. We would like to keep our money in
Swiss banks but in Dollars and others upto 2 per cent. So, nobody is
holding money in any other currency. That is why USA is the most important
country in the world in economic terms. It is the engine of the world’s
economy – it is the driver of the world’s economy. Because the US
consumes so much, rest of our economies do well. We are pretty
dependent on the US to keep this growth rate going. To think that the end
of the US has come is a little premature. They are there to stay for quite
some time to come.
How much money does a State have to spend? The size of per capita
income of the USA is $ 46,000. Even, as China and India rise, if you take
this projection upto the next 50 years i.e. to 2060, the US will still be number
one spender with per capita income close to $ 100,000 – that will give
them per capita tax revenue of about $ 25000. China’s tax revenue per
capita today is about $ 330, India’s about $ 120 – the USA’s is $ 8800.
That is the real index of power not how many ships you have, how many
guns you have. The USA will continue to be, at least in this Century, the
foremost economic power in the world. They are in the forefront of
technological advances in the world – computers, medicine, aerospace,
advanced military equipment etc. Though this advantage has narrowed
but they are still way ahead. That is why the world does well because they
have a trade deficit of $ 847 billion with the USA.
Ironi cal l y, Chi na’s unprecedented economi c ri se and huge
accumulation of wealth overseas, particularly in the USA in the form of US
securities has created the first major challenge to what seemed an
unimpeded rise to dominant status in the world. It is now caught in a deadly
economic embrace with the USA – akin to Siamese twins. China has a
trade surplus of almost $ 400 billion, out of which $ 303 billion worth is with
the USA. What would happen to China if it did not have this trade surplus?
There will be a hole in China’s GDP which it cannot fill. India has a trade
surplus with the USA. Every second country in the world has trade surplus
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 83
with the USA. The number of countries who have a trade deficit with the
USA is just a handful because they are quite ridiculously ill managed
economies to have a trade deficit with the USA. This is how big the USA is
– out of the total world GDP of about $ 56 trillion, the US is $ 14 trillion.
Their GDP is growing at 2 per cent, but 2 per cent on $ 14 trillion is not the
same as 10 per cent on $ 1 trillion, nor 11 per cent on $ 2.8 trillion. There
is a big difference. The annual accrual here is huge. So, those who think
that an end of the era has come, are again making a big mistake.
Why is the USA in trouble? When George Walker Bush took over, the
US economy had a budget surplus of about $ 100 billion. That is what Bill
Clinton left him because he was managing the economy well. He left them
with a surplus. Look what happened after that? You had budgetary deficit,
trade deficit – all just kept going up. Mr Obama had to pick up the reigns
from here and he has barely been able to control the situation. Presently,
the trade scenario in the USA is that they have current balance of $ 800
billion – adverse. They have exports of 1.15 per cent. If you look at their
exports, aircraft and telecommunications amount to 49 per cent of their
exports. Boeing alone is exporting about 30 per cent. While they export
these to all the countries, they import from China 17 per cent. Why do they
import from China? We will come to that. Almost all countries have got
trade surpluses with the USA, except countries like the UAE, Hong Kong,
Belgium, Australia. What are they buying from the Chinese? They are buying
cheap electrical machinery, fans and other small things like apparel. As a
matter of fact the USA imports $ 12 billion worth of Chinese shoes every
year.
These days wherever you meet people from Asia they talk of transfer
of power coming towards Asia. There is a new kind of power building up in
the world. The power of monopsony i.e. when you have only one or two
buyers. A monopoly is when you have only one manufacturer; but when
you have only one or two buyers it is equally dangerous. The USA has
arrived at a monopsonous position on many articles with China, and it is a
84 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
monopoly supplier of many ‘leading technology’ articles. If you want to buy
a Boeing plane, it is $ 400 million per piece. If you want to buy Intel chips,
they will decide the price. So they are monopoly suppliers and monopsnous
buyers. Therefore, they are very comfortably placed economically.
Amongst the world’s top exporters, Germany is No.1, then, it is China,
the USA and Japan. These are the big export players in the world. China’s
trade with the USA is growing. The USA exports amount to $ 72 billion and
imports to $ 338 billion. Every year percentage change kept going up till
2008, and then it dropped. That is the cause of China’s troubles. If USA’s
exports and imports figures get more and more balanced, China would get
squeezed. So, China’s soft power, hard power, smart power is not going
to work because everything is working because of a hole in Uncle Sam’s
trade balance. If that gets closer, you are in deep trouble. Chinese lost 22
million jobs since the slowdown of the world economy. Exports are dropping
at the rate of 10-12 per cent per quarter. This quarter it dropped 13.1 per
cent. So, I cannot see how you are going to recover without the USA
becoming profligate again. There is a moral there – if the US health gets
better, China’s health gets bad.
China’s trade with the world has led to the remarkable rise of China.
In 10 years it has gone up almost eight to ten folds. The USA gives you a
large market so you get economies of scale. When you get those
economies of scale you can pretty much do what you want with other
markets. Now in India we have a bilateral trade of 55 billion $ with China
and Chinese have a trade balance of $ 12 billion in their favour. If you go
to the market in India today, everything comes from China. The Chinese
are exporting with those economies of scale all over the world. Amongst
China’s top trading partners, we are somewhere at No 11. But the USA is
right at the top.
The world economy is growing fast. It was 3.6 per cent, touched almost
4 per cent in 2008, before coming to a halt. Again it is picking up and it will
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 85
keep rising. This era is one of fast economic growth for the developing
world. In this Asia is growing fastest. Asia’s share of world GDP exceeds
EU, the USA and rest of the world. If Asia unites together to get a common
currency, then may be, it can challenge the Dollar but not till then. But Asia
consists of Japan which is not very fond of China, it consists of India also
not very fond of China, ASEAN which is very suspicious of China, and then
we do not like each other very much. Asia leads the world in growth. They
are stashing away money abroad, in Swiss Banks. Are they going to start
putting money in Yuan or Yen, very unlikely.
The excitement in the world is all about future growth. The Goldman
Sachs have predicted future growths for India, the USA and China. The
rest are pretty much there, but, they do not really factor – Japan, Britain,
Russia, UK, Germany and France. Actually India is sitting on the verge of
a far greater growth opportunity than China is. As a matter of fact next
year and the year afterwards, India’s growth rates will be more than China’s,
because there is a demographic push coming in for India’s growth rate.
Whether we handle our economy well is another thing. But the window of
opportunity starts to open up very soon.
In the recent days there is much talk of BRICs – Brazil, Russia, India,
China. BRICs is being favoured as a new power. The Chinese are very
keen on exploring BRICs as an alternate source, as a stabilising instrument,
as a different source of power to challenge the US hegemony and the
Dollar. In BRICs India has the highest potential. As this period goes we will
be growing two per cent more than China. As a matter of fact, if you do
one per cent more then you actually overtake China in GDP terms in 2040
or so. That possibility is now beginning to dawn on the world. If you add 2
per cent you are well past China by 2030. And we are already on the +2 per
cent trajectory. +2 per cent trajectory we said is very difficult, very optimistic
but we are already doing it. Goldman Sachs said, China is going to do 5.8
per cent, we are doing 7.8 per cent, when they say they are going to do 9
per cent, we will be doing 11 per cent. Prime Minister is already talking
86 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
about 11 and I see that is possible. But, whether we are going to have
equitable growth, a balanced growth !! I do not know.
In the rapidly changing world, a new world order is emerging. In this
situation, how does the world get off the Tiger? The obvious answers are:
If the USA lives within its means, China slows down. If China slows down,
the US lives within its means. This is a symbiotic relationship. As a matter
of fact the US economists describe their relationship as one between that
of a drug addict and a drug peddler, or a dope addict and a dope peddler.
One needs to sell the dope, the other keeps consuming it – I describe
them as Siamese twins, joined together with different personalities. Both
are fighting and shouting at each other but have to eat at the same time
because they have one stomach. If the USA has to live within its means: -
(a) It has to pull out of these wars.
(b) Balance its budget and trade with China.
(c) Force the revaluation of the Yuan. Otherwise this means, curbing
dollarisation of the world, increasing special drawing rights (SDR’s).
(d) BRICs bilateral trading, in own currencies. This is a possibility.
Suppose I trade with China, China buys and pays me in Yuan and I
pay them back in Rupee. We have the same currency, we hold our
own currency as reserves against each other. China is already doing
it with Brazil. But suppose we start doing it on a larger scale, it might
challenge dollarisation.
(e) Then you might have ASEAN, economic blocks i.e. China-India-
Japan as one economic block. Why not? European Union is already
there.
(f) G 20 is the IMF. It should take control of the IMF to ensure closer
monitoring of members with the mandate of having balanced trade in
accordance with Brettonwood Compact prescriptions.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 87
Why did this imbalance take place? Because, both China and the USA
breached the Brettonwoods Compact which talked about having balanced
trade. Both of them have got good economists who studied in each other’s
universities, yet they breached their Brettonwoods Compact. If you want to
get back to normalcy you have to balance your budgets, and your trade.
The slogan I give is, ‘balance or perish’. But who will bell the big cat? I do
not think Dr Manmohan Singh is going to do it, I do not think Hu Jintao is
going to do it, I do not think Obama is going to do it. Today, the world is a
patient with a big deep wound and Mr Obama is applying band aid to it. It
can check bleeding for a little while. But if you do not balance your trade,
you don’t balance your books, do not slow the Chinese down, the bleeding
is going to start again and we would be in bad trouble. The next time it
bleeds it will bleed down.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 89
Session II : Second Paper
Ms Bethany Danyluk
China’s employment of soft power is an extremely broad topic and
open to analysis through a number of different approaches. I tried
to break it down into its component parts and analyse these parts in
a way that complements that of my fellow panel members. In doing
so, I am going to focus mainly on China’s use of soft power in the
developing world and particularly in Africa and Latin America. I will
start by i nt roduci ng what soft power i s and by cl ari f yi ng my
interpretation of soft power for the purposes of this conference. I
will then talk about why China is using soft power primarily in the
developing world and what is it hoping to achieve. After that I will
briefly assess the extent to which China’s soft power has been
successful in achieving its national objectives and move on to a
discussion on the implications of China’s employment of soft power
for the rest of the world and also for China itself. Finally, I will
conclude some perspectives on what China’s future soft power
strategy might look like.
First, what is soft power? As you probably are aware the term
soft power was coined by the scholar Joseph Nigh in his book ‘The
Changing Nature of American Power’ which was published in 1990.
But subsequent i nterpretati ons have expanded thi s defi ni ti on
somewhat and I will get to that in a moment but first I would like to
read a short excerpt from Nigh in which he defines soft power by
distinguishing it from hard power. He says, “a state may achieve
90 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
the outcomes it prefers in world power stakes because other states
want to follow it or have agreed to a situation that produces such
effect. In this sense it is just as important to set the agenda and
structure the situations in world politics as to get others to change
in particular cases. The second aspect of power which occurs when
one country gets other countries to want what it wants, might be
called cooptive or soft power in contrast with the harder command
power of ordering others to do it at once.” Nigh then goes on to
point out the three sources of soft power – culture, ideology and
institutions. As scholars have continued to develop this theory an
expanded defi ni ti on of soft power has taken shape to i ncl ude
addi t i onal component s such as economi cs and di pl omat i c
engagement. Josh Kurlantzick, a renowned scholar at the Carnegie
Endowment i n Washi ngton, authored the book ‘ Chi na’s Charm
Offensive’ and wrote in 2006 that today in the Asian context, soft
power is understood to imply all elements outside the security realm
including investment aid. So, I submit to you that this definition
applies in the context of other regions as well, including Africa, the
Mi ddl e East, South and Central Asi a and Lati n Ameri ca. The
dominating theme of the panel questions derive from the economic
question surrounding China’s use of soft power. So, I think it is
safe to say that we can invoke this expanded definition for the
purposes of this conference panel. But I don’t want to do that to the
exclusion of the other factors. So, I want to use the definition of
soft power that is broad enough to include the important economic
di mensi on but restri cti ve enough to adhere to Ni gh’s ori gi nal
principles.
This brings me to the four specific tools that I will be talking
about as China uses them for soft power purposes. First, economic
engagement refers to interactions with other states in terms of trade,
investment and aid, and other incentives and these last three usually
i ntertwi ne and are often hardl y di sti ngui shed from each other.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 91
Second is public diplomacy characterised by how China basically
advertises itself or what I will refer to as its public relations (PR)
campaign that also includes visits and exchanges by leaders and
delegations from other countries and symbolic agreements that are
usually intended to demonstrate how successful these visits and
exchanges are. Third, participation in multilateral institutions. This
describes China’s use of regional or global organisations to shape
behaviour and outcomes in ways that promote its interests. And
fourth, dissemination of culture includes sponsorship of cultural,
sport events, education initiatives to promote Chinese language and
culture, and the Chinese diaspora itself. It also includes use of
Chinese media to promote its image and increase tourism.
So, why is China using soft power? China is pursuing a national
strategy to increase its comprehensive national power which includes
both hard and soft components. So, while China is modernising its
military as we are all aware it is also focussing on the other side of
the equation. Along the way China has several intermediate goals
aimed at promoting a peaceful environment that will not interfere
with China’s development. First and foremost, it wants to protect
territorial sovereignty which describes its pursuit of the One China
Policy. Second, China needs to look outward for energy and raw
materi al s to sustai n i ts hi gh l evel s of growth and thi s goal i s
particularly important because economic growth is the key of the
legitimacy of the regime and failure to sustain this growth would
portend instability in China. Third, China advocates multi-polarity
which implies a world in which the USA is no longer the global
hegemon. Fourth, China hopes to gain political support from other
countries to back its positions in international institutions. Then
another reason for China’s increasing use of soft power is that
Chi na’s empl oyment of hard power strategi es have not been
particularly effective over the past few decades. Juxtaposed with
the success of the US policies at the height of American appeal
92 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
internationally China realised that it was necessary to look for new
ways to achieve its goal. Seeing this, China simply turned and
changed policy offering assistance and wanting friends wooing, not
intimidating, would now be the order of business. Finally, growing
concerns among other actors wi th respect to Chi na’s mi l i tary
modernisation have encouraged Chinese leadership to emphasise
more benign manifestations of its foreign policies.
So, casting its rise as non-threatening is particularly important
to China and it is taking care to emphasise several themes designed
to reinforce this point. This is actually part of its PR strategy that
will be described later but I decided to introduce it here because it
provides a helpful framework for thinking about the other elements
of soft power. So, first China is pursuing a strategy of peaceful
development that is benign in nature and not aimed at any particular
country. Relationships with China are win-win characterised by
mutual benefits. China aims to promote a harmonious world in which
relationships are based on friendship, equality and mutual respect.
China maintains a policy of non-interference in State’s domestic
affairs.
Let us look at China’s soft power tools in a bit more detail. I am
j ust goi ng t o t ouch on t hese. Economi c engagement , t rade,
investment aid, increasing trading relations have made China and
developing countries increasingly inter-dependent on each other.
China’s investments are aimed at developing energy and natural
resources and infrastructure which is actually designed to facilitate
its own acquisition of supplies to fuel its economy. China uses
multilateral institutions to strengthen its international image, build
legitimacy and credibility and show that it is interested in being a
responsible stakeholder. China’s status as a permanent member
of the UN Security Council places it in a position to veto resolutions
that undermine its interests as well as shape efforts at future reform.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 93
It is also a member of the regional institutions which allows it a role
in shaping the objectives of these organisations. China is also a
founding member of groupings such as the SCO and the BRIC
nations, and the China-Africa Forum which aim to balance the US
influence and/or provide alternatives to engagement with the United
States that are more focused on the interests of rising actors. China
also uses public diplomacy, spends a lot of time on public relations
to advertise its development as peaceful and good for the world
and it maintains a full diplomatic agenda conducting visits, and
exchanges between not only high level officials and delegations but
lower level engagements with politicians, political parties and interest
groups. These visits and exchanges are often accompanied by
symbolic agreements and China has also been placing increasing
emphasis on developing its diplomatic corps.
Cultural Diplomacy. While public diplomacy is designed to court
elites, cultural diplomacy aims to advertise China to foreign public
and to provide tangible evidence of China’s goodwill. So, as I
mentioned China sponsored cultural and sporting events, has tried
to make it easier for foreign students to study in China, it has also
developed computer institutes which are institutes that facilitate the
gl obal reach of Chi nese cul ture and l anguage. It has got very
popul ous di aspora across the worl d, especi al l y i n devel opi ng
countries, and also uses media and tourism.
So, how successful has China been in using soft power? There
is no question that China has been somewhat successful in building
and leveraging soft power in developing nations in pursuit of its
overarching objectives. China has been able to increase its access
to energy and raw materials overseas and to diversify the sources
of these supplies. Only 23 countries remain which have official
rel ati ons wi th Tai wan and experts have noted that devel opi ng
countri es are i ncreasi ngl y consi deri ng Chi na’s reacti ons when
94 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
making decisions about their domestic affairs. Several factors
however suggest that China’s success might not be sustainable over
the long term. Assessments from several years ago often cited
results of respected opinion polls such as the PU Global Attitudes
Report and the Chicago Council as indicators of China’s success in
soft power strategy. More recent findings of these polls however
reflect a decrease in China’s popularity and increasing negative
perceptions among other countries. It is also unclear how valuable
Chinese soft power has been in the UN. In the past, it has vetoed
resolutions intended to isolate countries in which China has interests
but more recently it has begun to support resolutions by condemning
human rights abuses in places like Burma and Sudan. Finally, in
Africa and Latin America where China is popular among the elites,
resentment is building among the public in response to what they
view China as a neo-colonial and exploitative practices. Latin
American businesses are increasingly having to compete for market
share of Chinese manufactured goods which are often sold below
the market value. Investment projects are not translating into as
many employment opportunities for local populations because China
i s i mport i ng i ts own workers and when i t does empl oy l ocal
populations they often face sub-par conditions and low wages. China
also tends to export its environmental practices creating further
source of backlash.
This is a practical example of my experience with how China’s
soft power has been successful. It is actually an excerpt from a
recent request for proposal issued by the US Agency for International
Development to solicit contractor support for food and enterprise
devel opment programme i n Li beri a. It descri bes the gui di ng
principles for the programme. I will read you the 7
th
guideline. “Pursue
opportunities to collaborate with China: USAID, Liberia and Embassy
of China are actively working to address opportune partnerships.”
Because of China’s growing influence in Africa it is fuelling economic
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 95
growth, helping the developing economies to stay afloat during the
time of global recession, its investment support is badly needed in
i nfrastructure and i t i s hel pi ng to establ i sh i t as a responsi bl e
stakeholder in international affairs which other countries are hoping
to leverage to achieve the outcomes of mutual interest such as
st abi l i si ng t he gl obal economy and r ei ni ng i n Nor t h Kor ea.
Furthermore, China’s participation in multilateral institutions means
further i ntegrati on wi th the i nternati onal communi ty whi ch wi l l
hopef ul l y l ead t o great er accountabi l i t y and expect at i ons of
compl i ance wi t h i nt er nat i onal nor ms. Al t er nat i vel y, some
consequences of China’s soft power activities support outcomes that
create a pretext for instability by undermining international norms
and institutions empowering rogue or corrupt regimes and building
a foundation that could support increased uses of hard power in
future.
These are just a few of the implications that the rest of the world
must consider and it is difficult to determine whether the good
outweighs the bad because we don’t know China’s intentions are.
But as Jasjit Singh pointed out in the beginning of the conference,
may be it is not necessary that has to be an either/or situation and
we can be prepared to embrace the good and work together to
achieve common interests for devising strategies to deal with the
challenges. We should also consider the implications of China’s
use of soft power for China itself. Beyond the previously discussed
benefits of the strategy in meeting China’s national objectives, it
also makes China more vulnerable in several areas. First, resources
being spent for developing soft power assets have receded means,
t here are f ewer resources t o devot e t o Chi na’s own i nt ernal
development. Chinese economy as we know is growing rapidly but
it lacks the infrastructure to support the pace and capacity of this
growth. Despite China’s statements that it does not have aspirations
for a leadership role in the international community it could be
96 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
compelled to assume one beyond the need to protect its own foreign
interests. States already look to China to leverage its influence on
issues of mutual interest and likely to pressure China to assume
responsibilities in either ones, not for ones it is prepared.
As the Chinese presence and profile grow, China is likely to
draw more scruti ny from the i nternati onal communi ty pl aci ng
increased emphasis on its record of human rights, environmental
practices and domestic weaknesses. Increased awareness of the
Chinese dark side could tarnish its image and would neutralise or
reverse the soft power successes that it has had, much like what
happened to the US following the exposure of Abu Gharaib and
enhanced interrogation techniques. I think this is already taking
pl ace i n the case of bri ngi ng to l i ght the si tuati on of weaker
population. I would imagine that up until a few years ago, the
average American following of current events had no idea of what a
veto was and now it has been in the news. So, the point to be made
here is that the benefits China derives from successful employment
of soft power are accompanied by costs that should not be ignored,
either by China or the international community because countries
have an interest in promoting stability in China; the prospects of
instability are serious and far reaching.
Then, I will conclude with a look at perhaps what the future of
the China soft power looks like which is quite intimidating with my
Chinese colleagues in the audience because I don’t presume to know
more than they do, but just based on recent literature here is what I
have to say. Experts hold competing views of whether China has
an actual soft power strategy. Some argue that its use of soft power
has been largely ad hoc and opportunistic and does not reflect a
well thought out and planned approach. Others however contend
that China has a strategy for everything so there is no possibility
that this could not be part of their strategy. But regardless of its
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 97
current state there have been indications that China is ready to pursue
a strategic approach to its use of soft power, if it isn’t already. Several
themes emerge from the July 2009 Ambassadorial Conference that
was attended by China’s foreign policy leaders. First, President Hu
specifically emphasised the importance of the role of soft power in
Chinese foreign policy. He then laid out four goals that China should
strive to further its foreign policy which subsequently became to be
known as four strengths. They include: China should be a more
influential power in politics, more competitive in the economic field,
should have more affinity in its image and be a more appealing force
in morality. I think you can see that the soft power characteristics of
the four strengths are evident. The dynamics of the conference implied
the intention to pursue more active foreign policy. So, China is moving
away from a ‘pull’ approach by which a country is able to convince
other countries to want what it wants to the ‘push’ approach where a
country actually uses its political influence to compel other countries
to do what it wants.
Over the past few decades China has followed Deng Xiaoping’s
approach to foreign policy characterised by the phrase, “keep a low
pr of i l e and bi de your t i me whi l e al so get t i ng somet hi ng
accomplished”. The documents from the July conference reveal a
slightly nuanced version of the principle described as, “Uphold
keeping a low profile and biding our time more actively, getting
somet hi ng accompl i shed”. Chi nese l eadershi p subsequent l y
affirmed this shift when Premier Wen Jiabao advocated for a new
focus on what he called functional diplomacy. This approach is
characterised by more involvement in cooperative structures that
address the challenges such as climate change, maritime piracy
and drug trafficking. As I thought about this idea it has become clear
that this approach will inevitably blur the lines even further between
soft and hard power. The functional diplomacy seems to me as
basically a description of collective security or security cooperation
98 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
and the challenges to be addressed clearly require the use of military
capabilities. Think about China’s recent anti-piracy operations off
t he coast of Somal i a. Thi s r ai ses t he quest i on f or f ur t her
consideration and debate. How does the increasing intersection or
ambiguity between hard and soft power, and China’s foreign policy
change the way we think about the future security environment and
whether China is an opportunity or a challenge?
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 99
Session II : Third Paper
Professor Aileen Baviera
My brief this afternoon is to talk to you about China’s soft power in South
East Asia. First of all, I need to begin with a caveat that South East Asia is
a very diverse region, diverse in many ways including in its responses and
actions towards China. Just as China’s attitudes and policies in South
East Asian countries also may have some differences between them, so it
is difficult to generalise South East Asia in that sense. Nonetheless through
years of our community building and relating to each other and gradually
harmonising our foreign policy attitudes, if not foreign policy itself, you might
say that the South East Asian countries do have some shared concerns
about the rise of China and as a consequence also about the role of China
as a new regional and global power.
In terms of soft power China’s influence in South East Asia has often
been said to have grown rapidly in recent years and in fact in the last few
years there have been a number of scholars from the US and Japan also
coming to South East Asian countries, exploring this subject matter: Has
China’s influence really grown that much; to what extent has this taken
place and is it going to be at the expense of the US and Japanese influence
specifically? So, it is considered an important subject. My presentation is
going to be a preliminary exploration of the following questions. In what
specific areas of soft power has China’s influence been observed to grow
in South East Asia? What factors might occur for such trends and will this
influence be at the expense of other powers?
100 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Bethany has already given a definition of soft power. Let me just
reiterate very briefly that in my study I looked at the elements of soft power
as inclusive of culture, economics, human capital, diplomacy and politics.
My conclusion which I would like to state at the outset is that China’s soft
power diplomacy has been most effective in the economic and the
diplomacy arena but not as effective and may have very little impact as far
as culture, human capital and politics is concerned in the South East Asian
region.
Why has China’s diplomacy been so successful in South East Asia?
There are a number of milestones to this. Perhaps, the most pronounced
and some of you may remember that up to the mid-90s there was a lot of
suspicion among the South East Asian states about China, particularly
actions that China had taken in the South China Sea as well as across the
Taiwan straits. It is very significant that in the 1997-98 Asian financial
crisis China was ready and generous with its assistance to the specific
South East Asian countries that were most affected while other powers or
other international financial institutions were not quite ready to come to the
assistance of these countries. So, the perception of China as a responsible
stakeholder, as a partner for regional development and stability really grew
as a consequence of the Asian financial crisis. China did not only provide
aid assistance but played an active role in the Chiang Mai currency swap
initiatives and also supplying some credit for helping the regional economies
by not devaluing the renminbi.
As of now, all South East Asian countries enjoy a trade surplus with
China which is considered an advantage to them. In the concerns running
up to China’s membership in the WTO, when most South East Asian
countries were afraid that this would result in a lot of diversion of trade to
China rather than South East Asia, China took the initiative to offer the
China-ASEAN Free Trade Area which was intended to reassure the South
East Asian economies that they could participate just as well in the prosperity
of China. There were many add-ons to this programme such as the early
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 101
harvest programme giving advantages to the least developed economies
of South East Asia. In other words, as far as its economic initiatives towards
ASEAN or South East Asian countries were concerned, China was able to
project itself as a responsible stakeholder and an economic leader.
On other initiatives, China was the first to sign on to the Treaty of
Amity and Cooperation in South East Asia when other great powers were
still reticent about this, it entered into strategic partnership not only with
the ASEAN as a whole but with each individual country. Some of the strategic
partnership agreements had defence cooperation elements to them
indicating how much had changed by way of the perceptions of China’s
security role in the region. There was a lot of bilateral assistance particularly
to Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar and the message of this high level political
agreements also was that China was prepared to commit long term to the
peace and stability of the region and that it conceived itself as shaping the
destiny of South East Asia. There was also a Declaration of Conduct in
the South China Sea that was signed by China and ASEAN which on China’s
side was intended to demonstrate that it could have a reasonable and
flexible approach from its earlier insistence on dealing with these territorial
issues bilaterally towards a multilateral dialogue on this issue, though it is
also observed that in more recent times China has been backtracking in
fact from the multilateral discussions on territory and reverting back to
bilateral discussions. There were energy cooperation agreements with a
number of countries. I think most of all China has consistently stated its
strong support for the central role that ASEAN plays in regional community
building initiatives and has participated actively in multilateral regimes and
institutions in the East Asian region which includes ASEAN+3, the ASEAN
Regional Forum, the East Asia Summit, all ASEAN RIM and ASEAN centred
arrangements as well as of course APEC. Through its participation in this
ASEAN RIM and regional arrangements China’s message has been that it
is against hegemony, it is inclusive based and it distinguishes itself from
the unilateralist approach of other powers, primarily the USA and Japan.
102 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
So, while this successful diplomacy and the charm offensive were
taking place, there were other factors that aided primarily the low credibility
of the US in South East Asia. At the time, following successive government’s
apparent disinterest in the region, the post-9/11 unilateralist policies of the
Bush government and the military approach to terrorism were not received
well in South East Asia – where we have predominantly Muslim states in
Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei and significant minorities in Thailand and
Philippines. The military approach to terrorism post 9/11 antagonised many
republics in the region. So, you can see the declining popularity of the
USA and the increasing popularity and influence of China. Japan’s
continued economic woes may have been a factor although it must also
be said that Japan by far still remains the major economic partner as far
as the great powers go and its influence is not always politically
communicated. But it is very much part of the regional and national
economies and it will be there to stay. Then there is also a media treatment
of China’s economic success stories all over which helps create a positive
attitude towards China in the region. In the economic and diplomatic
initiatives this has been quite successful.
Is China’s cultural soft power growing? Perhaps, among the ethnic
Chinese in South East Asia this may be said to be true. There is interest in
learning the Chinese language and the culture especially among second/
third generation ethnic Chinese, who have very little roots to China as the
motherland – but not much beyond ethnic Chinese communities. You will
understand that there have always been important Chinese communities
in these countries. Chinese culture is neither new nor exotic or exciting.
We are very familiar with Chinese culture. China’s rise does have a cultural
element but I believe it has minimal impact on the countries of the region.
In comparison when you look at young people they are probably more
attracted to the Japanese and Korean pop culture. There is much admiration
for high Chinese culture, cinema for instance, as well as China’s
achievements in science and technology of late. A lot of bad media
coverage on its tainted products is also affecting opinion of China, like in
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 103
the Philippines for instance, where many of the Chinese imports available
in supermarkets are considered of inferior quality. If not due to anything
else but the traders themselves are going for the cheaper goods not
necessarily the best quality ones. While you have the prospect of a rising
China militarily and economically, on the other hand, the level of exposure
among the ordinary people also projects a negative sign to China’s
economic rise.
Is the attraction of Chinese politics growing in South East Asia? There
was a time in the late 1980s and 90s when we had this debate about Asian
values and how human rights would be differently interpreted in East Asia
and the so called Confucian societies as compared to the West. During
that time you might say there was some attraction to a Confucian kind of
politics and how development should not take place in democracy as far
as the aspirations of the people of the region are concerned, but since
then we have seen an increasing liberalisation of politics in South East
Asia – the democratisation of Indonesia following fall of Suharto, in Thailand,
in the Philippines. Even growing civil society role in Malaysia for instance
would tend to an outcome where the kind of politics that China represents,
authoritarian centralised politics, top-down decisions would not be
considered attractive any more. So, among intellectuals for instance, if
you talk about China it just does not have the same kind of attraction as it
may have had in the late 1950s because of the internal developments in
the region itself. Possible exception would be I suppose Singapore.
Because of antipathy to one party system in the region you will see multiparty
systems and political reforms taking place. Another negative projection of
China is its involvement in corruption scandals in some of these countries.
In Philippines for instance what would have been major big ticket investment
projects became mired in allegations of corruption and had to be withdrawn
or suspended. So, this also does not give good publicity or promotion to
China.
104 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
In terms of China’s human capital, Singapore obviously has a policy
of attracting highly skilled Chinese professionals, academics, engineers.
But in the case of the Philippines, we see continued Chinese migration of
low skilled workers. So, despite the rise of China and its improving economy
there are still significant numbers of Chinese who migrate and take low
level jobs or end up as street sellers. That also gives a different image
when we talk about Chinese power. Some of the new migrants are not
even supported by the earlier migrants from China because they end up in
business competition with each other. So, there are issues among the old
and new migrants. Some of the new migrants become involved in illegal
activities such as drug trafficking and this gets a lot of media attention
again – projecting a negative image of the country.
Can China’s soft power influence the behaviour of other states –
independent of these States’ perceptions of hard power? I think the exercise
of soft power on the part of China has not at all led to the abandonment of
hard power as an instrument. In South East Asia there continues to be
concerns about China’s military modernisation and its readiness to use
force on the Taiwan issue. All the governments have committed to a one
China policy. But because of the principle of using force in itself, when
ASEAN in their collective ethics have spoken out very much in favour of
peaceful settlement of disputes and non-military approach to conflicts in
the region. Economic domination remains the concern of our specific
industry sectors within South East Asia. Even Myanmar, which is perceived
to be closest to China in political and economic interests, fears growing
dependency. It is well known that New Delhi is also engaged in some
balancing of sorts.
So, while the China’s soft power does have an impact in terms of its
diplomacy and economic influence, in other areas it is not as successful
and still has some way to go to compete, even with the Japanese soft
power in the South East Asian region – much less with western soft power,
if you like. The South East Asian countries are very much engaged with
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 105
China in a comprehensive way much more than at any time in the past but
in this period where we have seen this growing engagement between China
and South East Asia we have also seen increased hedging by the same
countries. Opportunities for hedging, especially which came about after 9/
11, where the focus on terrorism gave new life to cooperation with the
USA. Of course, many observers feel that this is not entirely about terrorism
but there are some concerns about rising powers that come into the picture.
It is observed that increase in soft power is occurring at the expense of
influence of other powers, such as the USA. But there is hedging taking
place, which means that there is a lot of increased confidence now, because
China’s policies are of a non-threatening nature and that there are more
opportunities that can be built in developing good relations with China. At
the same time the future role of China as a regional and global power still
raises a lot of questions that remain unanswered. Therefore, the tendency
to hedge against China’s rise persists.
China’s proactive stance has put pressure on the USA and Japan in
their own dealings with South East Asia. For instance, it was only after the
China-ASEAN Free Trade Area that Japan began to consider entering into
the same kind of arrangements with South East Asia and the same with
the USA. So, the indications are that they were reacting to China’s growing
inroads in the region. It remains the policy of ASEAN to engage all great
powers to balance each other and to prevent the rise of any regional
hegemon among them. The more China is engaged and the more China
becomes a dominant player in South East Asia, both economically and in
the security arena, the players of the ASEAN will work with other big players
to remain engaged as well. We see this also in the regional community
building efforts by the ASEAN+3 which includes South East Asia, China,
Japan and Korea has been a very successful initiative for well over 10
years with solid contributions to regional economic stability. Still it was
considered desirable by some major South East Asian countries to expand
this into the East Asia Summit bringing in India, Australia and New Zealand
– possibly the US also but again that remains up in the air.
106 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
I will end with a small note. By and large in South East Asia it is still
largely hard power that rides the perceptions of China and not soft power.
Without diluting the suspicions about Chinese hard power including fear
of using its economic leverage down the line, it is doubtful whether China’s
charm offensive alone would turn around perceptions on China from its
immediate neighbours in South East Asia.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 107
Session II : Fourth Paper
Mr Jayadeva Ranade
I am the last speaker to follow three very competent and distinguished
panelists who have discussed this subject at length. But I intend to use a
broad brush analytical approach to discuss the application of soft power
and cite a few examples on how China has actually used it. The phrase
‘soft power’ appears to be contradictory, but actually, this concept of non-
military inducement has been around for many centuries and been
enunciated by practitioners of state craft over the years in different regions
and seen diverse applications. In this part of the globe, for example, we
have had Chanakya and Sun Tzu both independently enunciating its
fundamental principles. The original concept was to find a way to overawe,
influence or seduce the adversary into accepting the superiority of the
initiating power without recourse to force. That principle remains valid till
today. To an extent it can be considered a derivative of psychological
warfare. As a modern concept, however, soft power was formalised in its
present form by Harvard University Professor Joseph Nigh. He explained
soft power to mean, “A nation’s ability to obtain international interests by
exhibiting its inner attractions”. He elaborated , “Not only great powers but
other countries can also develop soft power which could exert more
influence than military force on global matters”.
In modern management parlance soft power would be akin to brand
image. The two in fact are almost inter-changeable and the attributes of
soft power are also intangible. They include a country’s culture, language,
music, cuisine, etc. At the same time in my opinion, soft power cannot be
108 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
implemented unless it is backed by military, scientific and technological
power strongly. Here, I will quote three examples which ideally depict the
application of soft power in present times. Two of the countries that I have
selected are not major economic or military powers; neither do they wield
great political influence in world affairs and yet they have carved out a
niche for themselves in international affairs solely on the basis of the method
of application of soft power. The first country is Switzerland, a small country
with an area of slightly over 40000 sq km and a population of under seven
million. Switzerland appeared to be destined to remain on the outer fringes
of international affairs. Yet, by following studied neutrality (a principle - it
had no option but to adopt because of its size) symbolising the basis for a
stable and sound economy, even in very disturbed times, Switzerland had
projected itself as a safe and secure destination for storage of funds and
bullion by individuals, large corporations and countries. This image directly
benefits Switzerland because no country engaged in hostilities would want
to jeopardise, the safety of its own financial security or that of its governing
elite by attacking Switzerland. This is not a classic example of application
of soft power but it has inherent in it the idea contained in the original
concept. In any case by acquiring this brand image, Switzerland has
acquired for itself a stature higher than what it could normally hope to
aspire for.
The second example pertains to the use of soft power by a country in
order to find a place for itself in international affairs that is Norway. Again
a small country approximately 500,000 sq km mainly mountainous,
population of under five million. It is geographically located on the periphery
of world politics but has successfully converted its location into an asset.
It is portrayed that its distance from the vortex of international politics actually
gives it the objectivity necessary to mediate in conflicts and bring about a
resolution. Norway has over the years sought to build an image of objectivity
as a neutral mediator of conflicts and in the process again acquired an
international stature bigger than it could normally hope for.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 109
The USA is the final example and the concept of soft power as formulated
by Joseph Nigh fits. As the USA gained in economic, military, scientific and
technological strength, it expanded its global reach to project its power.
This was a combination of military, diplomatic and soft power. The first
attraction to people around the world was the economic opportunities afforded
by the American economic strength and over the past couple of centuries
this lured thousands of people from all over the world to the USA. A substantive
acknowledgement of the US soft power is that in Chinese the US is called
‘meco’ or a beautiful country. Many of us would recall that numerous Chinese
workers were employed in construction of the rail roads and many more
followed in their wake setting up small laundry and shoemaking businesses
– and finally China Towns all across the USA. This exodus of people into
the USA and the money they sent home would have contributed to naming
the US as ‘meco’. Other more vivid examples of the American soft power
familiar to people the world over are the Hollywood movies, American music
and most of all the ubiquitous Coca Cola. Military, scientific and technological
strength have played a major role as a number of countries sought to align
themselves with the US for the benefits that could flow from proximity and
USA’s wealth and global influence.
But China too has in recent years grasped the usefulness of soft power
and decided to employ it in the pursuit of its goals. The concept fits well
with Confucian philosophy also and of other Chinese philosophers. I would
not go into that aspect right now. But China’s first concrete application of
soft power was during the Asian Financial Crisis in 1997-98 when it did not
devalue the Yuan despite pressure and took steps to assist the affected
countries in the region. It’s action appealed to the business and government
elites in these countries and created a foothold for it. China’s aid to countries
in Africa is another concrete example of China converting its economic
strength to soft power to achieve its strategic and diplomatic goals. Chinese
aid annually totals 1.5 to 2 billion dollars to Africa. This has been backed
by teams of doctors sent from China, scholarships to African students to
study in China and projects that directly improve peoples’ lives like railways,
110 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
dams and power stations alongwith training programmes for military personnel
of African countries. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao at Sharm- El-Sheikh
earlier in November this year offered Africa an additional 10 billion dollars in
concessional loans over the next 3 years; thus, fulfilling Chinese President
Hu Jintao’s offer in 2006 to double the quantum of assistance. Africa as is
well known is viewed by China as an abundant source of natural resources
and soft power is being used here to achieve strategic goals.
The other area of strategic and direct interest for China is South East
Asia. This is a region replete with potential flashpoints over territorial
disputes and the presence of ethnic Chinese local overseas population.
In the early 1990s, China assessed that it would find it difficult to recover
its claimed offshore territories in the face of resistance from countries like
Vietnam, the Philippines, Japan etc. It perceived that all the countries with
contesting claims viewed China with suspicion and were trying to unite
and oppose China. Accordingly, Beijing decided to adopt a policy to co-
opt or soften each country individually. It decided to use diplomacy
reinforced by economic strength. Culture, diplomacy, foreign aid, trade
and investment were employed to soften popular and governmental
suspicion of China as well as over shadow the US influence. China began
disbursing large sums of aid and assistance to the South East Asian
countries. It focussed on enhancing bilateral trade with the South East
Asian nations to create a dependence on China’s huge economy and
domestic market. By 2006 China’s over all trade with the region touched
160 billion US dollars. By the following year it had exceeded that of the
USA. It is estimated to touch 1.2 trillion by 2010. China today has
considerable influence in the region, thanks also to its economically powerful
and wealthy overseas Chinese community in these countries.
It has pursued a similar policy in South Asia where it has used a
combination of circumstances to build influence. Primarily, it has been willing
to extend fiscal assistance, take up developmental projects and develop
trade links. By 2010 China’s bilateral trade with South Asia is estimated to
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 111
exceed well over a 100 billion dollars. In addition, as in the case of most of
the other countries where it has strategic interests, it has got involved in
numerous infrastructure developmental projects that favourably project its
image and earn good will.
What has been the effect of this soft power effort? A 2007, Pu
Research Poll confirms that China’s effort at using its strong economy as
soft power to project a less threatening and benevolent image has yielded
results. The survey found that 83 per cent of Malaysians and 65 per cent
of Indonesians had favourable views of China, a sharp contrast to the
findings of a survey five years earlier. The US lagged behind except in the
case of the Philippines which continued to be more wary of China. In
2008, however, there was a slight shift in pattern, perhaps consequent to
the aggressive actions at sea and another Pu survey found that negative
feelings about China in South East Asia had increased. There have been
other efforts at use of soft power by China. The largest public demonstration
was the 2008 Olympic games. These cost an estimated 70 billion US
dollars and were telecast live to 4.7 billion viewers and was used as an
opportunity to showcase China’s huge economy and its ability to
successfully host possibly, the world’s biggest event. Its image was
buttressed by the grand ceremonies which were choreographed with
precision and its impressive medals tally.
Another major effort at the use of soft power has been the launch of the
programme to spread Chinese culture and the Chinese language. It was
decided to expand soft power through the Confucious Institutes and the first
institute was set up in Tashkent in 2004. By 2009 there were 328 Confucious
Institutes the world over. The aim is to set up 500 Confucious institutes by
2010 and a 1000 by 2020. China is also focussing on teaching people
Chinese and estimates that 40 million people are learning Chinese today
throughout the world. In October 2007 the application of soft power by
China received a fillip when Chinese President Hu Jintao declared at the 17
th
Party Congress that China needed to enhance soft power since culture has
112 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
become a factor of growing significance in the competition in overall national
strength. As part of this effort, an amount of 6.6 billion dollars was earmarked
for expansion of the media’s reach. The result has been the increase in
transmissions and transmission time of CCTV channels and China
International Radio broadcasts. Two new dailies have been added already;
namely, the English and Chinese editions of Global Times as subsidiaries of
the party paper People’s Daily. The State owned news agency Xinhua has
plans to add more than 100 bureaus. China has begun also exhibiting the
size of its publishing industry by participating in international book fairs. For
example, earlier this year in February it spent 7.5 million dollars in participating
in the book exhibition at Frankfurt. Satellite communications are also being
expanded with a view to acquiring dominance in the sector of satellite
telecommunications and networking activities in the developing world.
Education represents the ideal application of soft power as it directly
targets the elite opinion forming segment of a country. It is a long range
move. China started targeting this by establishing top flight world class
universities and then embarking on programmes promoting student
exchanges. It incrementally increased budgetary allocations for education
and in 2009 the education budget totals 29 billion dollars. The universities
offer Chinese language, medicine, art, culture, etc., courses and
scholarships to students to attract them. Today, there are 224,000 overseas
students in China and by 2020 China hopes to have over 500,000 overseas
students studying in Chinese universities. By way of comparison I may just
mention that the US and the UK have about 624,000 and 513,000 overseas
students studying in their universities. To achieve the target of 500,000
overseas students China has from this year enhanced the monthly living
subsidies for undergraduate overseas students by 50 per cent and similarly
for graduate and post graduate students.
But there is still substantial suspicion of China throughout the region
and in fact in many parts of the world. This is because the Chinese communist
leadership, perhaps, has deep belief that ‘power flows from the barrel of a
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 113
gun’, has not eschewed the use of military force and continues to rely heavily
on the PLA. Modernisation and strengthening of the PLA has in fact been a
consistent theme of the Chinese ambition. The use of force at Tiananmen
Square and more recently, to stop Tibetans escaping to Nepal over mountain
passes or quell disturbances in Tibet and Xinxiang remind us of another side
of China’s leadership. Observers noticed that at the prestigious 2008 Olympic
games the girl who actually sang the inaugural song was substituted on
stage by another because the latter was better looking. Also, a 100,000
PLA personnel were deployed to ensure smooth performances at the games.
In the context of Beijing’s efforts to allay the apprehensions of countries in
the region that China continues to harbour aggressive designs the PLA Navy
celebrations held in April 2009 only served to highlight its capabilities. It
signalled that the PLA Navy could and is preparing in the future to recover its
claims in the off-shore territories.
To conclude, I would paraphrase a remark I heard recently in this very
context, “the people of the region listen carefully to the sound of hoof beats
of the galloping horsemen of history and are unlikely to forget past Chinese
behaviour”.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 115
Session II : Discussion
Issue Raised
How can you say that China’s soft power undermines international norms,
empowers authoritarian regimes like Iran and Korea and lays the foundation
for hard power?
Responses
(a) It is agreed that China has contributed to positive international
standards and has acted as a responsible stake holder in many cases.
However, it has perhaps undermined them through its policy of non-
interference in the internal affairs of countries that have low standards
for anti-corruption and do not support transparency and accountability
in governance. Whereas, if China did not pursue a policy of non-
interference, these countries would probably still need to depend on
western institutions like the IMF, World Bank etc; which attach reform
conditions and minimal conditions for human rights etc.
(b) It is agreed that Chinese performance in the UN Security Council
and through ‘six party’ talks has improved the situation in Iran and
Korea. However, since China empowers dictators in places like Sudan
and Myanmar, by engaging with them when other countries would
not, the net effect is that it is not clear what China’s intentions are.
(c) Hard power lays the foundation for soft power because without
the looming threat of hard power, China would not be able to exercise
its soft power. Soft power in the form of infrastructure investments,
development of ports, transportation and roads provide the foundation
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for setting up future military bases in those areas e.g. the ‘string of
pearls’ theory.
Issue Raised
With the ‘Rising China’, its economic, military and political power would
also grow. In that case, soft power would play a very important role in
making China a good stake holder in international affairs. Why is the
Chinese leadership not paying adequate attention to soft power and why
is it focussed on building up economic strength and military power?
Responses
(a)It stems from the fact that in their priorities, building up of economic
power is most important, without which they feel they would not be
able to move ahead. To an extent they are correct, because to raise
living standards of the people domestically, they do need to have a
strong economy. However, what happens is- if while building up of strong
economy its orientation is towards having a strong military, it leads to
bringing up the whole country to No 1 or No 2 position. In the minds of
the Chinese leadership, application of military strength is very important.
Hence, soft power becomes number two and is used as an expedient
to resolve a situation (temporarily), i.e. to bide time till the mainland
China is strong enough to push in and resolve the problem the way
they wanted to solve.
(b)Another view was that there was no such thing as soft power. There
is only one power and i.e. hard power. It has two components – the
economic component and the military component. The economic
component is now being made to appear as soft power. It is not soft
power. It is projection of Comprehensive National Power. It is the
influence of money and military power which is hard power.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 117
Issues Raised
China is reputed to have foreign investment in terms of the US treasury
bonds amounting to over One trillion dollars. Sudden liquidation would
reverse the value of dollar and progressively bring down the American
monetary power. Can China use this power to :
(a) Obtain from the USA various concessions?
(b) Restrict competition in selected areas for China e.g. in African
countries?
(c) With the help of the American influence, somehow counter India’s
growing economic power?
Responses
(a)Firstly, Chinese foreign investments in US dollars amount to more
than 1.6 trillion. It is more than that. Holding this kind of reserve is an
economic folly. There is no wisdom in doing so. It is like riding a tiger
which you cannot get off. China is losing something like $400 billion a
year by keeping this money in the US banks because of devaluation
(12 per cent last year) and the dollar is likely to devalue further.
(b)China is likely to pay the price for this. In recent history, nations
like Iran and Japan have paid for piling reserves in the USA.
(c)Ten years from now, the Chinese reserves would be there. The
Americans will then find some other place to buy their goods from.
Suddenly, they would show the power of monopsony to China e.g.
what happened to baby food, dog food or toxic toys etc? The Chinese
boat would be rocked again and again.
(d)A country which intends to rock the USA, ends up being in its
clutches. To under estimate and write off the USA is another folly. It is
118 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
a big industrial power with cutting edge technologies, which makes it a
smart power.
(e)China would not be in a position to challenge the power of the USA
in the near future. We should not over estimate the role of this 1.6
trillion dollar foreign exchange reserves.
Issue Raised
Is there any chance of negotiated settlement of the border issue between
India and China?
Response
The border issue is important. Anne Marie Slaughter, presently Hillary
Clinton’s Director of Policy in the US State Department has written a major
paper on China to say that every time there was economic difficulty within
the country, there was a crisis, the country tended to look outwards. Since
we have an unfinished problem with China, they would look outwards at us
– just like we would do too. We need to be ready to face the problem by
taking up confidence building measures, by seeking a state of parity or
near parity vis-à-vis China. Our military planners can take a lesson from
the fact that whatever happens, one has to be ready and only then can
there be peace and stability.
Issues Raised
In the Cold War era, capitalists thought of fighting Communism. What would
be the ramifications of the present day economic imbalances vis-à-vis the
Chinese investments? How would the current portents play up in the coming
decades; say, in the next twenty years?
Response
This is not a fight between democracy and communism. There is no
communism in China. China is following an authoritarian form of
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 119
government. Its inspiration is Lee Kwan Yew. It is not a fight between
democracy and totalitarianism. There are two dynamic economies at play
in China. China is not going to go the old Soviet Union way. Soviet Union
went down, when it was spending 50-55 per cent of its GDP on defence. It
had gone totally berserk militarily speaking and did not have the economy
to back it up. It was saddled with huge peripheral areas which it had to
finance and support. This included Ukraine, Belarus, all the Warsaw Pact
Countries, the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Countries.
China does not have such a liability. China’s economy is pretty homogenous
and solid. It is well directed. It has got a huge industrial component.
However, it is not in the same league as the USA. The relationship with the
USA is not one of equals. It is one of a lower grade economy supplying
cheap goods to a high consumptive economy. History seldom repeats itself
in that way. What we have is a completely new set of dynamics and China
at this moment does not have the wherewithal to compete with the USA
and it is unlikely to change, at least not in this Century.
CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 121
Session II: Chairman’s
Concluding Remarks
We have had an excellent discussion on the elements of soft power and
how China has applied its soft power. Undoubtedly, China’s economic
performance in the last 20 years has been remarkable. The question arises
– Is economics a soft power or is it a clout? As far as China is concerned,
it has used its economic strength more as a hard power than as a soft
power. Look at the way they have gone about in Africa. The President and
the Prime Minister visited Africa and they divided Africa into two, and they
offered lots of economic aid to various countries.
Professor Baviera made the point that China has not been that
successful in its soft power endeavours as it has been in the other field i.e.
economic power play. Mr Mohan Guruswamy has made a seminal point;
people outside India do not make this mistake, but in India we tend to
believe that somehow China has already overtaken America and that
America is in a serious state of decline. Far from it. If the USA’s per capita
income were to stay absolutely flat at $46,000 and the Chinese were to
grow at 7 - 9 per cent and if you applied the rule of 72, 9 years or 8 years
to double the per capita income from $3500 to $7000 and $14000 and
$28000, it will be 2042 before they catch up with the current American per
capita income. That is, as Mohan said, for this Century.
Chinese economic power is important. Its application, its softer roles
are problematical because of various reasons. Soft power consists of
culture, music and cuisine. In cuisine of course they have an advantage,
122 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
but their language makes it very difficult for them to export their soft power
in its classical sense. That is going to remain in spite of much money being
invested in giving scholarships etc. Basically, what has happened is that
Deng’s advice, “be humble and bide for your time” has been forgotten by
the Chinese. They are neither humble nor, they are waiting for their time.
They are too much in a hurry, and that creates problems.
Professor Baviera described how the Chinese are creating
apprehensions in this region. If you see, in spite of the amount of money,
etc., which they are investing in Africa, their presence is not liked that
much as their benevolence really should call for.
There is a shift of power taking place. As Paul Kennedy brought out in
his book “With the collapse of time, the power now resides in Nations’ and
organisations’ hands for a shorter and shorter time”, and if the Chinese do
not play their cards carefully that moment also will pass. Nonetheless, I do
not want to give the impression that there is not something to be applauded
about the progress which they have made in such a short time. May be,
the typical Chinese wisdom will prevail in the long run and we will have a
happier, more equitable and peaceful world.
In the end, I will make one final point, “You can invest in making a
strong nation and you can invest in making a strong state”. The Soviet
Union invested in making a strong State. But a strong nation requires
empowering of its people and I think the Chinese have a long way to go.
Any authoritarian regime, would have a long way to go to make a strong
nation because authoritarian regimes do not empower people; they really
limit their creativity and that in the long run does not pay and it gets
overtaken.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY :
SPACE,NUCLEAR,POWER
PROJECTION
AND REGIONAL POWER
THIRD SESSION
Chairman Rear Admiral KR Menon (Retd)
First Paper Professor Han Hua , SIS Peking University
Second Paper Professor Michael Pillsbury, Consultant, USDoD
Third Paper Mr Yung Sheng Chao, Prospect Foundation, Taipei.
Fourth Paper Lt Gen (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd),
Okazaki Institute, Japan
Fifth Paper Colonel (now Brigadier) Subodh Kumar,
USI Senior Research Fellow
Discussion
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 125
Session III : Chairman’s
Opening Remarks
Rear Admiral K Raja Menon (Retd)
Good morning ladies and gentlemen, and senior citizens of the USI. I must
tell you that the continued presence of the older generation is really one of
the great strengths of this Institution. You debated some very weighty issues
yesterday. The jury is still out on whether the rise is peaceful or not. We
are however, sure of one thing that China has certainly risen. To set the
background to the discussions this morning, I had a look at some of the
great writers on the philosophical culture that defines China. There are
some very interesting writings, particularly addressing India. They say things
which the world outside does not take seriously, when we use the expression
‘harmonious society’. This is a serious concept in China. Under this concept
they state, ‘we believe in dispute resolution’. The Chinese say, ‘we don’t
think that disputes should arise if there is a harmonious society’. Where do
we get these ideas from. The Chinese say, ‘from this country which they
refer to as the western heaven’ - which is supposed to be India. If you
were stuck in traffic jam this morning you might not agree that this is ‘western
heaven’. But, there it is. When we say China is the ‘middle kingdom’, they
agree but middle kingdom is below western heaven. That also explains
why the Chinese get very upset when there is a conflict between Japan
and China because they say Japan is a child of this great harmonious
society culture. So how could there be a conflict? Now the ones who
argue against it and say that there could be conflict because of Marxism.
The Chinese say that Marxism is a Western idea and there is nothing
126 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Chinese about Marxism – economic theory of surplus value and all that.
After all, it is Mao who said, ‘power comes from the barrel of a gun’.
We have a very learned panel this morning. I will leave maximum
time for questions. May I now call upon the first speaker Professor Han
Hua from the Beijing University to give her presentation.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 127
Session III : First Paper
Professor Han Hua
If you look at the Nuclear Forces, in the newly released data by the
Federation of Association of Scientists of the USA and look at China, you
can have a general view about how powerful China has become in terms
of strategic capability. In recent years, it is interesting to say there are so
many estimates about Chinese Nuclear capability but the figures are
gradually getting down. It shows we have 118 Nuclear warheads. Talking
about China specifically, another estimate may be a little bit different from
this one. It has a total of 275 warheads, which is the highest estimate. If
you look specifically at the ICBMs, SLBMs and bombers, you can see that
China has developed sufficient Nuclear deterrence capability. People are
looking at China’s new developments. After seeing the Chinese military
parade on the Tiananmen Square a few months ago the people said, China
has upgraded its Du Fong missiles – specifically Du Fong 31 and Du Fong
41, and also the Ju Long series of Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles;
and also 033, 034 Nuclear capable Submarines. I would like to share
some facets about the Chinese Nuclear build up. Upto 1996 China had
done 45 tests. China has a small size trial arsenal, comprising of land,
submarine and bombers. We (China) have lesser Nuclear warheads and
delivery systems compared with the USA and Russia, and limited ‘de- alert
status’. It means, the warheads are kept separated from the missiles, and
‘slow retaliation’ – only one week after the Nuclear attack.
Objective of Chinese Nuclear Strategy is to counter coercion. It means
not to yield to Nuclear blackmails and coercion. The western terminology
of “deterrence” is neither correct nor accurate word to explain China’s
128 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
strategy. ‘Deterrence’ translated into Chinese is ‘wei she’ is not an
appropriate translation because it is not compatible to ‘deterrence’, rather
it means “coercion”. Some Chinese scholars and strategists have already
begun to believe in the Western concept of “deterrence”. Some Western
scholars describe the Chinese Nuclear Strategy as a transformation from
‘minimum deterrence’ to ‘limited deterrence’, which signifies their war
fighting capability.
What are the differences between “minimum deterrence” and “counter
coercion”? The objective of the Chinese nuclear strategy is to counter
‘coercion’. The core strategy is ‘no first use’ (NFU) policy. NFU means,
‘use only as a last resort’. For China, NFU makes more sense than first
use. China’s NFU is unconditional. Among the NPT nuclear states China
is the only country which concedes to NFU to provide security assurance
to nuclear have-nots and nuclear weapon free zones.
China’s nuclear modernisation of its Nuclear capability, has three
parameters. The first one is, ‘increase mobility for survivability’, specially
for ICBMs and SLBMs. The second direction of the modernisation is
‘accuracy’. Smaller warheads make the weapons more accurate. The last
one is to change from liquid fuel to solid fuel – to reduce launch preparation
time. The rationale of the driving force behind this modernisation, is the
vulnerability of Chinese ‘limited nuclear deterrence’. The solid based
missiles are vulnerable to attack, solid fuel missiles have higher readiness
and low early warning capabilities, low operational capabilities of nuclear
submarines. In sum, Chinese vulnerability makes it imperative for China
to upgrade its nuclear capability.
The other side of the driving force of Chinese modernisation is China’s
‘threat perception’. In recent years China has a threat perception from the
USA’s pre-emptive strike capability and intention. There are two reasons
behind this: one is the Nuclear Posture Review in 2001 and the other is an
article: “The End of MAD – US Nuclear Primacy” published in the Foreign
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 129
Affairs Journal. These two developments in the US really made the Chinese
feel not very confident when they talk about their nuclear capability. Another
driving force is ‘The US Missile Defence’. The third one is, the Chinese
apprehension from the US intent for use of nuclear weapons. More US
nuclear weapons are targeting China and there are more US nuclear
submarines in the Pacific Ocean.
Overall, if you look at the newly published 2009 White Paper in China
you can have more concrete views about Chinese nuclear strategy. The
White Paper says, “China is committed to the NFU” of nuclear weapons.
China also made an assurance to Rumsfeld, the Secretary of Defence of
the USA when he visited China four years ago. The Chinese military strategy
“Calls for the building of a lean but effective deterrence force and the flexible
use of different means of deterrence”. China has also made a more clear
statement about their different strategies. For example, “During peacetime
nuclear weapons don’t target any country, but in crisis nuclear forces go
into a state of alert, and when facing nuclear attack second artillery will get
ready for a nuclear counter attack to deter the enemy from using nuclear
weapons against China”.
China has developed small size and sufficient nuclear capability.
China’s nuclear development has been slow and China has a unique
strategy of countering coercion. About new directions of Chinese nuclear
future, we can say that China is trying to retain or upgrade counter-coercion
capability that includes :
(a) The counter measures to US Missile Defence System
(b) Survivability of a nuclear first strike
(c) NFU will be kept as the core of the strategy.
Actually in recent years, specifically after the US raised the ‘Missile
Defence Plan; in China, especially, in the Arms Control community we
130 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
have a big debate about whether China should keep the NFU policy intact
or they should change it into some conditional NFU.
In the end, the mainstream in China’s security community still believes
that NFU serves Chinese interest the most.
Lastly, nuclear disarmament, so far we have signed the agreement
reached by the USA and Russia but since Obama proposed the ‘Nuclear
Weapons Free World Plan’ and China has been asked or pressurised to
have something to do in the ‘Nuclear Disarmament’ field; in general China
takes a positive view about Nuclear Weapons Free Zone but we still think
the two nuclear powers ought to take the lead to dramatically reduce the
number of the warheads and the delivery systems. The quality of weapons
also matter. They have to do something before China is drawn in the process.
Chairman’s Remarks
The professor has given a very powerful message. We have to take note
from all sources that are available to us that the number of nuclear warheads
that China is attempting to stabilise at, is considerably lower than what its
financial capacity is capable of sustaining. Whether it is 275 or 300 or 350,
it is around that – which is a very positive step. In our part of the world, we
are a little more concerned with the proliferation to Pakistan which is certainly
an issue that might come around to bite them, considering the present
political turmoil in Pakistan. The other issue that we have to take note of is
what China has a very large number of non-nuclear tipped ballistic missiles.
How does the surveillance system tell the difference when one of these
missiles is launched as to whether the tip is nuclear or non-nuclear?
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 131
Session III : Second Paper
Professor Michael Pillsbury
The ‘six questions’ up for discussion are extremely important. There are
two big obstacles to answering these questions. First is Chinese soft power,
affecting the thinking of military planners. During our conference yesterday
and again this morning apologies are being made for military planning.
The idea seems to be that we all want peace; my country wants peace,
China wants peace, therefore we should not think about worst case
scenarios. The problem with that is that if you look at the ‘memoirs’ in
India about 1962, on our side and on the Indian side, you find tragic efforts
in the 1950s to do just this kind of thinking. Then you find at the moment
of Chinese attack, your Prime Minister in desperation asking for US air
force units to be called in to defend India because there were no forces left
between Calcutta and the Chinese military frontline.
You cannot invent ‘A Force One Commando’ in just one day. You
cannot have signals intelligence, anti-terrorism measures to prevent what
happened in Mumbai. It is the same thing with China. We all want peace
with China. I believe Professor Han Hua was giving American views. She
very carefully quoted American left wing pro-China views of China’s nuclear
forces. I hope that is true. I hope the Chinese do not follow the model of
the Soviet Union and try to match the USA with 10,000 warheads. But
when the US President asked China’s President on April 20, 2006: Can we
please have a dialogue between our Strategic Forces Commanders? The
Chinese President said, “Yes, good idea.” It was announced by the White
House publicly that same day. It has never happened. The Chinese Nuclear
132 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Forces Commander always has some place else to visit. He has been to
Argentina, Chile and many other places. He just cannot quite come to the
US Strategic Forces Command. Most recently, our Chinese highest level
visitor went out there, and really had nothing to say. He brought the Second
Artillery – Professor Han Hua just mentioned. He brought the Political
Commissar because this man would know little bit about the Chinese future
Nuclear planning. No, he had nothing to say. So, we have to use American
left wing pro-China statistics, and comments from the Chinese Defence
White Paper on a topic of extreme importance. Where is the Chinese
Nuclear force going in 20 years? An important thing for all of these six
questions is: How much money will China have to spend? There is a Rand
Corporation study online, done a few years ago that estimates the Chinese
Navy budget, cumulative: How much money will they have to spend from
year 2005 to 2025? Over those 20 years they have 500 billion dollars to
spend. Rand estimates appear conservative. It could be much more. The
Rand estimated that the Chinese air Force would have 500 billion dollars
cumulative to spend, that is a lot of money.
Look at the low level scenario. A world of peace – China has great
trust in American military deployments that are not aimed at China, does
not see India as a threat, does not see Japan as a threat, then this level of
money could be spent on very internally focussed systems for China – self
defence. There is a list of about 25 subjects where China talks about (in a
book I wrote 10 years ago) internal self defence needs. China has no
early warning system for its nuclear forces for example. Spend a lot of
money on that. China is very concerned about the island chains opposite
China’s coast, a few hundred miles out that some kind of foreign enemy
could fortify these island chains and blockade China. If I missed a lot in
Chinese military writings they can spend a lot of money on that over the
next 20 years or they can spend nothing. Here no island chain blockade
will happen. Their main topic was Japan when they raised this question.
Thirdly, they have a fear of India. They see an Indian threat and they write
about it. They can spend a lot of money on the Indian threat or nothing.
So, if you look at our questions, the area of strategic reach; should they
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 133
attempt to protect their sea lanes of communication (SLOC) coming to the
Indian Ocean. A lot of Chinese military authors say-yes this is a threat. But
suppose Indian soft power reassures China, no we have no intention of
making the Indian Ocean an ‘Indian’ Ocean. We will never interfere with
Chinese oil tankers coming through here and we do not care if China forms
military agreements with Burma or Pakistan, and other places, we do not
care, we will do nothing about this. If Indian soft power succeeds, China
could spend nothing on power projection, strategic reach in the Indian
Ocean or they could have a trillion dollars to spend on it over the next 20
years for the Air Force and Navy, cumulative acquisition budgets combined.
These Rand estimates are weapons acquisition budgets only.
A look at the Assasin’s Mace concept. Professor Han Hua made a
very good point that China has a unique strategic culture and approach to
many strategic problems. The Americans have a hard time in understanding
this term. It seems to mean, one Chinese General told me, when I asked
him: What is this Assassin’s Mace? I have to translate this for my books.
How do you put it, he said, very easy Dr Pillsbury. You see James Bond
movies – at the very end, James Bond always has a very special piece of
technology he can pull out of his briefcase or somewhere and he saves
the situation. He was going to be killed but he saves himself because he
has what the Chinese call Assassin’s Mace. This is a 1200 years old concept
from Tang Dynasty – it is brought out secretly. It is not known to the enemy.
So, you can have a conference topic on what is China’s Assassin’s Mace?
It is secret. But it is a war winning concept. You build the technology and
then you use it at the time to save yourself from disaster. A number of
Chinese military officers have discussed the Assassin’s Mace concept
indiscreetly. While some Americans have written about this, the Chinese
civilian scholars make fun of it. They said no, no, no – ‘Assassins Mace’
just means a kick-ass weapon. It is just a colloquial expression. For
example, while dating a girl, the Chinese might use a special technique
that may be unique – not used before by anyone else. Your Department of
Defence (DoD) people are just wasting their time. There is no such thing.
Chinese soft power can be very effective at putting people to sleep.
134 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
The other concepts. Professor Han Hua did a very good job on the
low end nuclear missile modernisation. She made a very important point.
American developments, and perhaps Indian and Japanese, make a huge
difference on what the Chinese would do with their own missile forces. In
America if you look back at the 1980s, 1990-91 public comments about
Chinese missile forces, over the next 20 years, i.e. around 2000-2001,
guess, how many people would have forecast that China would deploy
more than 1000 short range missiles against Taiwan? It did happen. Nobody
projected a short range ballistic missile build up opposite Taiwan means
that the US policy and Taiwan policy had no chance to work on heading off
or persuading China please do not do this. The intelligence community
failed so badly in the forecasts in 1980’s and in 1990 that the opportunity
for policy makers to do something was taken away. Chinese soft power
and self deception by American analysts was very strong. In terms of
integrated joint war capability, what is the main conclusion all experts on
Chinese military draw in the USA? If you read through all our studies,
what you will find is: China is very bad at integrated joint warfare capability.
They cannot do this, very backward, no hope, trying hard in their training
scenarios but very pathetic. If that is right, we have the low end scenario
for military planners. But there is a wonderful book in Chinese which I
hope someone would translate. It is called Science of Joint Campaign
Training. It is written by a Chinese General who is Chief of Operations. His
name is Shu Gan Fu. This book gives 24 Campaign Plans on military
operations that, ‘training should be done now, for the future’. Of the 24
Campaign Plans, all of them are ‘Integrated Joint Campaign’ scenarios.
For example, ‘Island Chain Blockade’ says – Second Artillery Missile Forces,
PLA Air force, PLA Navy, and other units must cooperate, and describes
how this can be done. Will they have any success in doing this? If Chinese
soft power is successful, the American answer and the Indian answer will
be no. China cannot make any progress in this area and so our military
planners should not plan for it. That seems to be the current situation.
China has numerous requests to the USA and some to India. You
have to think about Chinese soft power in terms of these requests:-
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 135
(a) Number one, the DoD Annual Report on Chinese military power:
very detailed, 60 pages, on line, lot of graphics. The best effort of the
DoD to understand China today, because of request from Congress. It
is a Law, it must be done. China says cancel this Law. Do not do it
anymore, as this Report is very misleading. It upsets people and in a
way it blocks the effort of Chinese soft power to claim peaceful rise, so
don’t do this.
(b) Number two, stop your pressure on Europe and Israel who want to
sell weapons to China worth billions of dollars.
(c) Number three, do not sell weapons to India. This would be very
unharmonious world, especially anything that helps India to upgrade
maritime patrol capability in the Indian Ocean or anything that helps
India along the frontier.
(d) Another Chinese request – Arunachal Pradesh should be returned
to China, Aksai Chin Tibetan Plateau area is Chinese territory. In the
US mapping it is always shown contested territory with little blue lines
in Aksai Chin Area and also in Arunachal Pradesh. Chinese friends
object to this: Why does Pentagon do this? This is Chinese territory.
Also, India maintains a government in exile for Tibet; Dalai Lama’s
position is: My government, my parliament, my cabinet ministers must
return to Lhasa. This is the topic of dialogue China would not have.
Why does India do this, why does America seem to passively consent
this?
(e) Another request from China, cancel the limits. There are 12 legally
required limits about topics that the US military cannot discuss with
China; nuclear deterrence, power projection, logistics etc. The US
Congress passed a law 10 years ago which says, you are going too far
in military talks with China, you must never talk about these 12 things.
China says this law must be repealed. The US would not sell spare
parts of weapons we sold to China in the 1980s. China says you
(America) must do this.
136 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Chinese soft power includes a number of demands. I have only
mentioned a few of them. If you really want soft power to succeed, not only
should there be no military planning against high end contingencies
involving China; but, America and India must make specific moves to bring
about a harmonious world.
The views expressed by me are personal and do not represent the
US government in any way. I hope our efforts to use American soft power
towards China will succeed because our view is: China needs to follow
Confucius tradition, needs to defend its internal issues only, needs to avoid
these six areas, needs to be more transparent about its own military build
up in the next 10 or 20 years with specific figures – not relying on Union of
Scientists and other Left Wing US organisations. We have a long list of
American soft power hopes for a Chinese approach to a harmonious world
and hope American soft power will succeed as well as Chinese soft power
does.
Chairman’s Remarks
It is not surprising that in a military institution we may think that soft power
is not valid, but if any of you got frightened this morning as I did when
Michael was speaking; well, that is soft power, to get you frightened without
hitting you on the head. He made a very valid point. It is $ 500 billion that
is going to be available for the PLA at 37 per cent of the budget for the next
25 years. If this is not going to be used to build up a giant Navy- how else
is it going to be used? This is a challenge for the Chinese diplomacy to tell
the world that either they are not going to spend that much money or they
are going to spend it on something else. There is this challenge in trying to
tell the Chinese - do not build up in the Indian Ocean. The shadow boxing
that is going to happen should take strategic directions more clearly.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 137
Session III : Third Paper
Mr Yung Sheng Chao
My presentation will cover PRC’s military force projection capability and
regional security.
China held its 60
th
Anniversary parade last month. The PLA displayed
most updated weapons systems of its different services. The weapons
display revealed transition of strategic gravity of the PLA from ‘Homeland
Defence’ to assuring the “Stability of China’s Land and Maritime Periphery’.
To meet its energy needs, China would be highly dependent on crude oil
produced in the Persian Gulf. The proportion of imports by the sea lanes
of communication (SLOC) will be more and more. This has also resulted
in development of major weaknesses in China’s Strategic Forces. Many
Chinese writers recognise the potential vulnerability of China’s SLOC.
Therefore, the need to establish control of the Indian Ocean Region (IOR),
South China Sea, maritime transport routes and expansion of influence of
military power on the first island chain has become an inevitable choice of
China.
What is China’s approach? China’s approach to deal with this
challenge appears to be reflected in sustained effort to develop the capability
to ‘attack’ long range military force that might deploy or operate within the
Western Pacific area. In this context, China envisages anti-access and
aerial denial power increasingly; providing multiple layers of offensive
systems utilising the sea air space and cyber space. The PLA is also
organising Second Artillery, new generation aircraft and ships to engage
and for repelling a foreign aggression. The US Department of Defence
138 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
(DoD) 2009 estimates that China will take until the end of this decade or
longer to produce a model force capable of defeating a moderate size
adversary. Meanwhile, China will not be able to project and sustain small
military units far beyond China before 2015 and would not be able to project
and sustain large force in combat operations far from China until the
following decade.
What most people are concerned about is the establishment of China’s
‘anti-access’ operational capability. In China Military Report 2009, the US
DoD points out that the PLA hopes to build integrated systems in the 21
st
Century based on anti-ship ballistic missiles, global positioning and tracking
systems, C4ISR systems and inter-continental ballistic missile guidance
system to tackle enemy surface ships. China believes that in modern
warfare, because their logistics and mobility are relatively weak, they would
use short range and medium range ballistic missiles; like the Dong Fong
15, land attack cruise missiles, special forces as well as computer network
attacks to deter or prevent the involvement of any third country in its
interests. The PLA, firstly, tried to refuse access, but could not persuade
the US defence research community to either agree or comply. Thereafter,
it decided not to compete with the US warships and fighter jets; but to aim
at preventing development of US military capability, of operating freely
around the coastal areas in China. Over the last decade, the PLA has
made great progress in this field. The range of its conventional ballistic
missile and cruise missiles can cover most of the US military bases in
East Asia. At the same time, the PLA is also building satellite-short base
radar and other sensors monitoring network consisting of integrated
systems to locate and track enemy’s surface warships, hundreds of
kilometres away from its coastal areas.
China’s combat operations efforts in recent years reflect their intent
to engage in multilayer interceptions. The first problem in implementing
this strategy is ‘detecting the US aircraft carriers’. Research literature on
the PLA’s anti-aircraft carrier operations emphasise the importance of
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 139
C4ISR network data link. Many Chinese military scholars believe that
detection of the US aircraft carrier battle groups is not a problem. China
has been developing and applying ocean reconnaissance satellites. After
this C4ISR systems are put into service, the detection range for locating
aircraft carriers can be greatly enhanced, enabling the PLA to project its
softer combat power to outer waters 300-500 km from the shore. In the
new round of arms procurement from Russia, China has been paying great
attention towards integration of C4ISR with data link. Whilst Russia’s 82N
data link technology is transferred to the Chinese force, the combat platform
will have a much enhanced capability in conducting integrated anti-aircraft
carrier operations.
The Chinese plan to conduct anti-access tactics against aircraft
carriers successfully, comprises of three different layers. Within the outer
range of 2000km from the Chinese coast line – known as the ‘outer layer’,
the PLA will use tactical missiles. The weapons systems used could include
the DF21 series, DF15 Model II and the Zero Night series submarines to
deter an adversary. The ‘second layer’ of the deterrence covers the range
from 1500-1000km. The main weapon systems to cover this range include
K-36 Sub with superior concealed features, SU-30 fighters and JH7. The
‘third layer’ covers the range from 500-200km. It is connected by including
many platforms like 956-M, 052 Class DDGs and short range ballistic
missiles.
It is stressed that the Americans ‘using the costly aircraft carriers’ is
the key to their global power projection capability. However, in the future,
the Chinese anti-access strategy would face crisis; i.e. when the USA
decides to pull back their aircraft carriers far away from China’s coast.
They would then be beyond the effective range of the Chinese aircraft.
This would reduce their capability to provide air cover for the US front, or
capability to conduct strikes against them from land and sea. In addition to
this more direct mode of attack, China is experimenting with anti-satellite
weapons and techniques for striking down enemy’s computer networks;
140 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
thereby making them ‘deaf and blind’ during the critical opening phase of a
war. China’s international behaviour is driven by a long standing ambition
to see China play a role of a great power in East Asia and globally. In other
words, its goal is not only Taiwan, it is even beyond that, hoping to play an
important role in the Asia-Pacific region and even the whole world.
What is the impact of this play on the region? China is gradually
changing the ‘regional stability’ and ‘military balance’ in East Asia and South
Asia. At present China’s military deployment beyond Taiwan is focused on
areas extending to Central Asia, South Asia and the Korean Peninsula –
also the South China Sea waterways. In Central Asia, the PLA tends to
cooperate with countries to implement the ‘National Anti-terrorism Mission’
and to jointly protect the oil and gas resources. In South Asia, it is planning
to use ground troops, armed police, navy and the air force and the missile
forces to deal with India and strengthening military cooperation with Pakistan
and Burma. To consolidate it’s ‘capabilities and activities’ in South Asia
and North Asia, the PLA would face confrontation from South Korea, Japan,
the USA and Russia. China also needs to pay close attention to whether
the situation in North Korea could lead to clashes in the region.
China’s rapid military modernisation, which has improved the PLA
ground force operational capability considerably, has been the most ignored
one by the world in the past 30 years. It has produced great pressures on
present day land neighbours. Due to recently developed armoured vehicles,
the PLA can mobilise its troops rapidly by rail and highways system which
have been constructed very speedily in the last decade. From the Chinese
perspective China today is a geopolitical land power state. Historically also
China had always performed the role of a strong land power. Predictably,
China cannot build its naval capabilities superior to the US Navy in the
near future. It is too unrealistic technically for China to use its middle sized
aircraft carrier fleet to protect its oil transportation SLOC, which cover a
distance of 7000 km, i.e. if the USA and India become China’s rivals. China
understands the situation very well that the PLA Navy would not be able to
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 141
compete with the American and Indian Navies in the Indian Ocean.
Therefore, it must extend its land power to its South Western periphery
and utilise land power supremacy to offset its sea power inferiority in South
Asia. During the process of military power transition, China behaved
carefully to hide its land power strategic intention to serve the purpose of
not provoking the ‘China threat suspicion’ amongst other countries,
especially its neighbours.
The Chinese have been successful in guiding the focus of outside
world to its naval development and to influence the Western observers to
analyse the possible outcomes of this development. Scholars continue to
debate, without consensus about the strategic intentions behind the recent
development of the PLA Navy. China has reshaped its outdated ground
forces step by step and transformed them into a modern force – both in
quality and quantity. In the naval area, the achievements have made the
PLA Navy capable of sailing into the blue ocean.
Based on rapid modernisation, China’s military has made significant
advances. It has enabled the PLA to extend its power into China’s land
and maritime periphery. Due to lack of transparency in China’s military
modernisation, the improvement of PLA’s warfare capability would only
create more security pressures and suspicion amongst all its neighbours.
The continued improvement in China’s economy will certainly translate
into further enhancement in its military capability. The sharp increase in
the military forces of China is an indisputable fact. Their anti-access strategy
training, even without a war, will cause a deterrent effect on neighbouring
countries in this region, including the USA. Of course, construction of
Chinese military power should not necessarily mean that it would lead to
conflict.
History, however, reminds us that expansion of military prowess results
in conflicts only. This is the process of countries growing and developing
strategic capabilities for obtaining more benefits for themselves. China
142 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
cannot avoid it. The USA and other Asia Pacific countries would also have
to face it in the future.
Chairman’s Remarks
Thank you Mr Yung Sheng Chao. Living in Taiwan, and realising the fact
that China’s soft power is not succeeding in its projections, of convincing
its neighbours that its rise is peaceful, must be disturbing. We have to
understand this: ‘spending of the huge amount of money, which is available
to China, is not going to cause threatening power projection capabilities’ -
that is a serious challenge. Of course, the Chinese would probably say,
that an ‘anti-access’ strategy for them is ‘defensive’ but for the Taiwanese
it is clearly ‘offensive’. So, there is a strategic gap here.
The two issues which have been brought up, are the ones about which
the countries on the periphery are aware. Firstly, China appears to be
working on trying to win the pre-hostilities escalation phase by denying
space assets to a competing power; and the other of course is ‘identifying
the ‘Assassin’s Mace’. Is it the Radar, or Infra Red terminal homing of
ballistic missiles, backed by Over the Head Radars. We assume that this
is coming. If it is, then it is going to change the nature of Maritime Warfare.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 143
Session III : Fourth Paper
Lieutenant General (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd)
The focus of the talk will be on ‘Chinese Space Warfare Capability’. Firstly,
the Chinese Space capability developments are very confidential. Today,
many of the technological advances have broadened the Space capability
into commercial and military areas. Our social infrastructure would collapse
completely without space capabilities. In military application, space
capabilities are essential, both in strategic and in tactical operations. Even
in early 1991, during Operation Desert Storm in Iraq, space enabled a
wide range of capabilities to the US and coalition forces; which included
missile warning, communications, lasers, surveillance and reconnaissance.
Space forces are now closely embedded in combat operations and play a
key role in providing data surveillance, reach and power for the nation’s
civilian and military radars, e.g. Global Positioning System (GPS) navigation
and timing signal has enabled to turn ‘dumb bomb’ into ‘smart munitions’
effectively with relatively little cost. Satellite Communication (SATCOM)
also plays a major role in feeding data information to the 21
st
Century military,
connecting decision makers and combat forces across the globe. SATCOM
enables information sharing at all levels of warfare. For instance, Space
enabled communications link transfers a lot of information including threat
data, intelligence information and tasking orders.
China is one of the most active Space power in Asia. It has been
investing in Space capabilities since the 1960s. Its Space programme was
partially shielded from interference during the cultural revolution in early
1970s, when many other programmes faced severe disruption. The
144 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
investment has paid off for China. It has resulted in visible enhancement
of its ‘prestige’. China used its Space programme to announce its great
power status and regional dominance. China’s President Hu Jintao
described the success of Shenzhou – 5, which was the first Chinese
manned spaceship in October 2003, as a historic step taken by the Chinese
people in their endeavour to surmount the peak of the world science and
technology. The motives that guide both Chinese civil and military Space
efforts fall into three categories. The first involves China in bringing Space
capabilities equivalent with other developed nations. Furthermore, China
intended to show its prowess as a super power. China also hopes to take
advantage of new technologies like Micro Satellites to create new Space
capabilities that would also allow it to exceed developed nations.
China looks to these new technologies to provide asymmetric
advantages against the United States and other potential opponents. This
means that military Space architecture for China looked very different from
that used by the USA or Russia. It means not a true multiplier of weapons
systems but a symbolic status of technologies. So, China also wants Space
to provide these eye-catching activities which enhance Chinese prestige
and influence. Chinese activities in Space were undertaken primarily to
affirm or enhance prestige and influence rather than continuously building
up operational capabilities so far. The long term goal is to make Space
operations integral part of China’s national power.
Chinese manned orbital mission is a part of its ambitious programme
for exploration. The next phase of the manned programme was Shenzhou-
7 launched in September 2008. Shenzhou-7 carried three astronauts and
one of those astronauts carried out a Space walk. Between 2010 and
2012 there will be a docking manoeuvre with another Spacecraft followed
by a construction of the permanent Space station – establishment of a
permanent Space station is the major goal of the manned Space
programme.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 145
China has another Space project, working on unmanned Lunar
Exploration programme named Changai. The Lunar programme has three
phases, planned over the next 12 years. Changai-I was launched
successfully in October 2007, took Moon’s surface pictures and is now still
orbiting the Moon. China hopes that success of the Changai project will
set the stage for manned Lunar missions. China’s Space budget was
secret until 1994. It has still not been made public. It was estimated to be
between $1 to $3 billion per year. This includes both military and civilian
Space projects, but this does not include all Space related expenditure.
One US specialist estimates that China spends a little less than one half of
one per cent of the GDP for all the Space programmes. Since the GDP of
China is growing rapidly, this may mean that the Space budget will increase
every year.
Chinese Space related technologies are notable e.g. take their
capabilities in remote sensing. Remote sensing technologies are a vital
element of information technologies. Chinese military has identified them
as a vital area for building Space capabilities. China has built and flown
numerous remote sensing and reconnaissance satellites. The first Chinese
model was primitive having poor image resolution. Overtime, Chinese
remote sensing effort has become more sophisticated and improved.
The most visible example of current Chinese military Space
programme is the Anti Satellite (ASAT) test. The guided laser ASAT weapon
that China tested in January 2007 appears to be part of a larger effort to
deploy a range of ASAT capabilities. There are press reports that China is
also developing other kinds of ASAT weapons including ground based lasers
and jammers against satellite signals. The ASAT test involves direct delivery
system to intercept a ballistic missile or a satellite. The Chinese intentions
for the test may be to confirm its Asymmetric Warfare capabilities against
the USA and to show its Space hegemony in this region. Perhaps the most
interesting thing about the test was that China miscalculated the reaction
to it. They did not expect global condemnation of their ASAT test which
146 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
caused Space debris. This miscalculation reflects inexperience in
international politics and a certain degree of hubris found in China’s
economic success. Anyway, if China deploys ASAT weapons it would hold
satellites in the global orbit at risk. Those geo Space assets would
significantly affect most military operations. They would pose a special
potential threat to the US military operations in the Pacific; which would
also include US responses, in case of Taiwan contingency.
A view of what China has built and launched suggests that China’s
military Space effort is intended primarily to demonstrate technology and
to test many different types of satellites. China has built almost a full
range of military Space capabilities and it could rapidly deploy satellites for
signalling, intelligence, reconnaissance, geo-navigation and other services.
If China has not yet done so, does not mean that it will not do so in the
future. The civil Space programme seems to be the high priority for now,
but China is clearly focussed on military use of Space for asymmetric
approaches to conflict. Despite a range of potential responses, no single
option is either simple and cheap or one that would work fully and effectively.
Chairman’s Remarks
Thank you General. There is enough study going on here in India too, to
recognise that the Space is a new frontier. Just as the ‘seas’ were the new
frontier in the 15
th
Century and if you have failed in the challenge like we
failed in the 15
th
century, then you would also get colonised. But, one of
the unfortunate aspects is that Space scientists have a very close access
to political leaders, who actually eventually handout the budgets. Although
politicians may not understand rocket science, they are very quick to
understand that successful Space programmes, particularly putting a man
on the Moon actually helps to win domestic elections. It even makes the
stock markets go up!
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 147
Session III : Fifth Paper
Brigadier Subodh Kumar
Chinese Space Warfare Capabilities
How can China be Expected to use her Demonstrated
Space Warfare Capability?
Introduction
China is today the undisputed space super-power of Asia and the fastest
rising star in the hierarchy of the extant space powers. Supported by a fast
growing GDP and a large military-industrial complex, China has one of the
most ambitious space programmes of world. Over the years, in addition to
the large family of Long March series of space launch vehicles, China has
a developed a variety of satellites and space applications spanning the
entire spectrum of space activities. China is the third nation to have
successfully achieved manned spaceflight following the USA and the
erstwhile USSR. It may well soon be the second to land a man on the
Moon, a fact now begrudgingly recognised by US space experts. In fact, in
Sep 2007, Michael Griffin, the then Chief NASA administrator is reported
to have said, “I personally believe that China will be back on the moon
before we are. I think when that happens, Americans will not like it. But
they will just have to not like it”.
While the multifaceted and rapid growth of Chinese space capabilities
is being keenly observed by the entire world, what is perhaps more
significant from the Indian perspective is that most analysts agree that the
one defining characteristic of the Chinese space programme is its military
orientation. As the international consortium Space Security Index 2009 puts
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it – “China’s governmental space program does not maintain a strong
separation between civil and military applications.” Even today a large chunk
of Chinese satellites are either pure military or dual-use, launched and
operated by state-owned military industrial corporations. China is one of
the few nations with a proven offensive space warfare capability. China
has a large number of military oriented communication, navigation and
remote-sensing satellites in orbit and is perhaps the third largest user of
military satellites outside US and Russia. It is also noteworthy that China
has known capability to launch electronic intelligence (ELINT) and electronic
warfare (EW) satellites. China is also in the process of setting up a
sophisticated satellite based Qu Dian C4I system broadly modelled on the
US Joint Tactical Information Distribution System (JTIDS). However in what
may be called the crowning glory of the Chinese space warfare capabilities,
China became the third country in the world with a demonstrated anti-
satellite (ASAT) capability after the successful destruction of a satellite
with a ground based interceptor in Jan 2007. It can thus be stated
unequivocally that space power forms an important part of the Chinese
Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA).
India, on the other hand, while being an aspiring space power with an
ambitious space programme, is a relative newbie in the field of military
uses of outer space. Most Indian achievements in space have primarily
been in civilian commercial or scientific fields. While the Indian space
programme is globally acclaimed and the Indian space establishment has
consistently proven that it can match the best in capabilities and innovation,
the reality is that India lags far behind in space warfare capabilities and
has much ground to cover before it can fully leverage its space prowess to
enhance its national security, project its military power, and safeguard its
national interests. This capability gap, especially in relation to China, unless
urgently addressed, cannot but be detrimental to India’s security. It is in
this context that the Chinese space warfare capabilities and philosophy
are of a special interest to India. However before discussing the Chinese
space capabilities in detail, a few issues related to the geopolitical
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 149
significance of outer space forcing more and more countries to seek space
capabilities driving need to be highlighted.
Geopolitical Significance of Space
Clash of Interests
The 21
st
century will undoubtedly witness an exponential increase in space
activities by an increasing number of players. Mankind seems to be at the
cusp of a vigorous military and economic exploitation of outer space and
perhaps prove true the prophetic words of the visionary Russian space
engineer Konstantin Tsiolkovsky who had predicted as early as 1903 -
”Mankind will not remain forever on earth, but, in a quest for light and
space, will first timidly penetrate the atmosphere and later conquer the
whole of the solar system”. History bears witness that whenever military
and economic interests of nations have clashed, on land, sea or air it has
invariably led to a struggle for control and at times, war. There is no reason
to presume a future outer space rivalry will produce different results.
Therefore, it would be safe to assume that space exploitation and
domination will form an important component of contemporary and future
military strategy. Hence a focus on developing space capabilities forms a
crucial component of the grand strategy of all major powers. China is no
different and considers space activities as a key component of its overall
development strategy and a major contributor to its Comprehensive National
Power.
Duality of Space Assets
Another factor which enhances the geopolitical significance of space is the
inherent duality of space assets. Though all nations profess to pursue space
activities for ‘peaceful purposes’ and ‘for benefit of mankind’, the fact of the
matter are that by their very nature, space activities are innately dual-use.
For example, there is not much difference between a ballistic missile and a
space launch vehicle. In fact the first lot of space launch vehicles developed
150 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
by the United States, Russia and China were direct derivatives of ballistic
missiles. The first Soviet satellite, Sputnik-1 was launched by a modified R-
7 ICBM, and the first American satellite, Explorer-1 was launched by a Jupiter-
C rocket derived from the Redstone ICBM. Even the first Chinese satellite,
the DFH-1 was launched by the Long March-1 rocket, a direct derivative of
the DF-1 ICBM. In a similar vein, it is easy to envisage that remote sensing
satellites can also be used for military intelligence, surveillance and
reconnaissance (ISR) and telecommunication satellites for military
communications. Perhaps one of the most obvious recent example of this
duality is the widespread use of Global Positioning System satellites for
military targeting and guidance. Thus given the inherent dual-use capability
of space systems, it would not be incorrect to state that even a ‘purely’
civilian space programme would have some military spin-offs and a
considerable deterrent value.
Increase in the Number of Space Players
It is perhaps due to the dual-use capabilities of space assets that more and
more nations are clamouring to join the ‘Space Club’. Today there are nine
nations with demonstrated space launch capabilities. These are US, Russia,
European Union (France and UK have launched satellites independently
before formation of EU), Japan, India, Israel and Iran. Many other countries
are waiting-in-the-wings with active space programmes in varying stages of
development. These include North Korea, South Korea, Brazil, Ukraine,
Romania, Indonesia, Australia, Kazakhstan, Taiwan, Pakistan, Azerbaijan,
Turkey, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Canada. In addition to
these, there are a number of nations who have restrained their developmental
efforts to satellites and satellite applications while relying on commercial
launch facilities of other nations. It is thus easy to conjecture that the future
will see a dramatic rise in space-enabled nations.
With so many players, some not on best of terms, it is that doubtful that
space will remain unaffected by global and regional events. It is perhaps
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 151
inevitable that terrestrial rivalries will sooner or later spill over to space thus
raising fears that outer space may well become the battle ground for
geopolitics in the 21
st
century. It is also noteworthy that while the Outer
Space Treaty 1967 prohibits placing of nuclear weapons or WMD in space,
other military uses are not expressly prohibited. It is evident that the
framework of international space law, at least in its present form, is
inadequate to prevent further militarisation of space. Even in the unlikely
eventuality of most future space powers pursuing a primarily civilian space
programme, it would still be safe to assume that they would divert at least
some portion of their space resources for military purposes for enhancing
their national security. In this context it is noteworthy that even small
countries like Greece and Belgium are active participants along with Spain
and Italy in the Helios very-high-resolution optical imaging military
reconnaissance programme led by France. The first satellite Helios 2A
was launched in 2004 and the second Helios 2B in 2009. It can thus be
asserted with a fair amount of certainty that with the increase in the number
of space players, militarization of space is only likely to increase in the
future.
Missile Proliferation and Space Militarisation
Closely linked to the issue of space militarisation is the issue of missile
proliferation. It is well known that an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile and a
Space Launch Vehicle are essentially similar. The first space launch vehicles
developed by US, Soviet Union, China and United Kingdom were derivatives
of ballistic missiles which themselves evolved from German rockets of
World War II. Therefore, any nation with ballistic missile capability has an
inherent potential of developing space launch capabilities. Recent examples
include Iran’s Safir2 SLV which is reported to be a derivative of its Shahab
3B missile which itself is a derivative of North Korean Nodong missile. It is
thus quite obvious that missile proliferation directly or indirectly contributes
to militarization of space.
152 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
In this context China’s record of missile proliferation leaves much to be
desired. In fact the famous Cox report submitted by a Select Committee of
the US House of Representatives does not mince any words in pointing an
accusing finger at China and openly alleges that “The PRC has transferred
ballistic missile technology to Iran, Pakistan, North Korea, Saudi Arabia,
Libya and other countries”. That most of the ‘client’ Chinese states are
slowly but steadily migrating from ballistic missile to space capabilities
raises justifiable fears of use or misuse of missile proliferation and space
capability as a tool for ‘containment’.
Sino-Indian Space Equation
Evolutionary Overview
Perhaps the military orientation of the Chinese space programme and the
lack thereof in case of India can be traced to the evolutionary trajectory
followed by two space programmes. While the roots of Chinese space
programme lie in her attempts to develop ballistic missiles with Russian
help in the 1950-60’s, the Indian space programme was started in the
1960’s purely for scientific and civilian purposes. Following the example of
the US and the USSR, China focused on a parallel development of ballistic
missiles, space launch vehicle capabilities and manned space flight. The
first Chinese ballistic missile Dong Feng-1 (DF-1) or East Wind-1 was
launched successfully on in 1960. The first satellite Dong Fang Hong-1
(DFH-1) or The East is Red was launched in 1970 using a Chang Zheng-
1 (CZ-1) or Long March-1 rocket (basically a modified version of Dong
Feng-4 ballistic missile). India on the other concentrated its energies in
satellite development and later migrated to space launch vehicles. The
first Indian satellite Aryabhata was launched in 1975 using a Soviet launch
vehicle. It was only in 1980 that India succeeded in placing a Rohini
experimental satellite in orbit using the indigenous SLV-3 rocket. The first
Indian ballistic missile was to come as late as 1988. This difference in their
histories was to set the tone for the future development of the space
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 153
programmes. Even today most analysts consider China to be way ahead of
India in the space launch vehicle technology. India on the other hand is
considered to have a slight edge over China in communication and remote-
sensing satellite technology.
A rather interesting aspect of the early years of the Chinese space
programme is the life story of its founding father and first director; Tsien
Hsue Shen who orchestrated both the missile and space programmes till
his retirement in 1991. An expatriate from US, he was one of the co-founders
of the renowned Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and an important member
of the American ballistic missile programme. He was even given the
honorary rank of a Colonel in the USAF and was a part of the team which
entered Germany at the end of World War II to locate and bring back key
personnel and documents of the German rocket programme. The team
was successful in its mission and brought back many Nazi rocket scientists
including the celebrated Wernher von Braun. Fortuitously for the Chinese,
Tsien was victimised during the McCarthy era and accused of being a
communist. Eventually his security clearance was stripped off and he was
forced to leave the US. China welcomed him with open arms, hailed him
as a hero, and promptly made him in charge of the ballistic missile and
space programmes. Not only did Tsien bring the latest knowledge, best
practices and techniques from the US, but he was also successful in
negotiating the 1956 agreement on transfer of nuclear and rocket
technology with Russia, including training of Chinese students in Russian
universities. The Chinese space programme thus had the benefit of
American expertise, Soviet assistance and backing of the powerful PLA in
the crucial formative years.
These historical factors ensured that the Chinese space establishment
and the PLA maintained strong links which have endured till date. In this
context it is noteworthy that out of the 50 years of its existence, the Chinese
space programme was under the direct control of the PLA for more than
three decades. It was only in the reforms era that the Chinese made an
154 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
attempt to ‘civilianise’ the space programme by transferring control from the
PLA to the Commission of Science Technology and Industry for National
Defence (COSTIND). Nevertheless the fact of the matter is that COSTIND
retained close links with the PLA since in addition to the space programme,
it was also responsible for R&D and production of military hardware of all
varieties. If a rough Indian analogy could be drawn, it would as if in addition
to its other duties, the DRDO was also given the charge of ISRO! In stark
contrast to the Chinese system, the more than six degrees of separation
between the Indian space programme and the military establishment are
well known. Thankfully recent years have seen a greater synchrony between
India space capabilities and her defence needs.
Chinese Space Industry
Analogous to NASA and our own ISRO, China National Space Agency
(CNSA) is the apex policy making body of the Chinese space programme.
It is also responsible for international cooperation and presents the ‘civilian’
face of the Chinese space industry to the rest of the world. However
interestingly, it is an internal structure of the Commission of Science
Technology and Industry for National Defence (COSTIND) [which has been
recently reorganized as the State Administration of Science Technology
and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND)]. The two major Chinese
corporations which actually design produce and launch the Chinese space
assets are China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC)
and China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC). Both
are gigantic organizations with approximately 100,000 employees each.
Both work on the unique Chinese model public sector companies run on
the lines of private corporations. Insofar as the space programme is
concerned, CASC is the more prominent of the two and said to be actually
‘running’ the space programme. It produces the Shenzhou series of
spacecraft, the Long March series of launch vehicles, and almost all
satellites. In addition, CASC is also a major producer of missiles and other
military hardware. The production of CASIC on the other hand, is skewed
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 155
more in favour of military than space hardware. Its products include
spacecraft, telecommunication equipment, missiles, specialist vehicles,
machinery etc.
ISRO on the other hand, has less than 15,000 employees, is primarily
engaged in producing satellites and launch vehicles, and is definitely not a
part of the Indian military industry. While it may be true that the large size
of the Chinese corporations may not be a true indicator of the actual size
of the Chinese space industry as they are engaged in other activities also,
it cannot be denied that the Chinese policy makers retain the option to
divert resources to the space programme at short notice. Thus overall
China has a massive lead over India in the size and capability of its space
industry.
Size and Ambition of Space Programmes
Both India and China have ambitious space programmes with China
enjoying a definitive edge over India. While China has already achieved
human spaceflight, India has still some way to go before it can boast of
this feat. China also boasts of a much more evolved launch vehicle capability
based on the Long March series which has run into six families of launch
vehicles till now. The maximum capability for GTO of the Long March family
is reported to be approximately 14 tons. China is also in the process of
developing the a new series of solid fuel launch vehicles named the KT
series which will give it the much sought ‘launch-on-demand’ capability.
India on the other hand has two main variants in its launch vehicle family
viz the PSLV series and the GSLV series. While the versatile PSLV series
has emerged as the work-horse of the space programme India hopes to
achieve GTO capability of 5 tons with the still under development GSLV
Mk III.
In addition to launch vehicles, China has a large number of satellites
encompassing a wide variety of roles. It has the DFH series satellites for
telecommunications, the FY series for meteorology, the FSW series
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recoverable satellites and the ZY series remote-sensing satellites. In addition
are the SJ series scientific and experimental satellites, the Beidou series
navigation and positioning satellites, the HY series ocean satellites and a
number of microsatellites (some with foreign collaboration). India on the
other hand has a relatively smaller family of satellites with the INSAT series
and the IRS series forming the backbone of the Indian satellite programme.
India too has a variety of special purpose satellites like Oceansat, RISAT-2,
scientific research satellites and micro-satellites. By all accounts the Indian
communication satellite capability is a shade better than the Chinese. India
also scores over China in the field of remote-sensing satellites. In fact the
Space Competitiveness Index 2009 developed by the Futron Corporation of
the US has called India the ‘global leader in remote-sensing’.
While the future plans of both nations include lunar exploration and
Mars exploration missions in the near future, China has an immense lead
over India both in the ambition and the extent of its space programme.
This is evident from the statement of Luo Ge of the China National Space
Agency (CNSA) made in an international symposium in 2006- “Generally
speaking, in the coming 5-8 years, we will be launching about 100 satellites”.
He also announced plans for a lunar rover, an orbiting Spacelab and a
possible lunar landing prompting one of the delegates to respond- “Man
oh man ... they’re not kidding around.” It is evident that what to talk of
India, even developed countries will be hard pressed to match such
capability.
Space Budgets
China also enjoys a substantial edge over India in the size of the space
budget. Conservative estimates indicate that the Chinese space budget is
in the region of US $ 1.3 billion plus. In comparison the declared Indian
space budget is US $ 892 million. If the Chinese tendency of keeping their
actual budget under wraps is taken into account, it would be safe to assume
that it would slightly less than double the Indian space budget. This
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 157
difference in size and budgets becomes evident when one compares the
variety of space ‘products’ of the two space industries. Therefore it may be
safely concluded that overall the balance of power is tilted in China’s favour.
Chinese Space Warfare Capabilities
Space and National Security
It would be highly erroneous to think that the Chinese space programme is
only India-specific or regional in ambition. China surely has more ambitious
plans than just dominating Asia. Nevertheless, India being the immediate
neighbour and perhaps a competing power-centre, cannot afford to ignore
the security implications of the untrammelled rise of Chinese military space
capabilities. The official Chinese view of integrating space assets into the
national security calculus is enunciated quite clearly in the White Paper
issued by the Chinese government entitled -”China’s Space Activities” 2006.
It states the aims of the Chinese space programme as:-
♦ To explore outer space, and learn more about the cosmos and the
Earth.
♦ To utilize outer space for peaceful purposes, promote mankind’s
civilization and social progress, and benefit the whole of mankind.
♦ To meet the growing demands of economic construction, national
security, science and technology development and social
progress, protect China’s national interests and build up the
comprehensive national strength.
The White paper further goes on to state - “Priority is given to upgrading
technologies and products in the nuclear, space, aviation, shipbuilding,
weaponry, electronics and other defence-related industries, so as to form a
cluster of high-tech industries to drive the growth of China’s economy……
Major scientific and technological projects, such as manned space flights
and the Lunar Probe Project, are being carried out to spur the leapfrogging
158 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
development of high-tech enterprises combining military and civilian needs
and to bring about overall improvements in defence-related science and
technology….. As a result, a fairly mature scientific and technological
infrastructure is taking shape, which is well-configured, multi-functional,
efficient and based on close cooperation between the military and civilian
sectors.”
It thus becomes obvious that while like most other nations, China too
does not advocate militarisation of space; the Chinese do not seem to be
averse to leveraging their space capability for national security and power
projection. China is a part of international committees like UN COPUOS
(United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space) and
has recently moved a resolution seeking a ban on offensive activities in
space in conjunction with Russia. Nevertheless what is important from the
Indian perspective is the policy emphasis both on civil and military uses of
space projects. This is best exemplified in the words of President Hu Jintao
in 2006- “We need to build an innovative system of defence science and
technology….. that integrates military and civilian scientific-
technological resources, and that organically integrates basic research,
applied R&D, product designing and manufacturing, and procurement of
technologies and products to create a good structure under which military
and civilian technologies are shared and mutually transferable”
Military Capabilities in Space
Nowhere is the definitive edge enjoyed by China over India in space more
accentuated than in the field of military satellites. Ever since the launch of
its space programme, China has always had a few satellites dedicated for
military communications and remote-sensing. China is also known to have
developed ELINT/SIGINT satellites in the past with varied degrees of success.
This has included the JSSW series (discontinued in the 1970’s) and some
SJ series scientific satellites. The Chinese are also known to have tried to
enhance their SIGINT capabilities by making an abortive bid to acquire two
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 159
satellites in the open market from Hughes Space & Communications in
1996. Thus Chinese interest in space based ELINT/SIGINT assets is well
established. As per some reports, even some of the Shenzhou manned
spacecraft have carried payloads consistent with SIGINT missions.
Insofar as military communications are concerned, PLA launched a
dedicated military communication satellite, FH-1 in 2000, the first of five
satellites planned for the Qu Dian C4I system, modelled on the US JTIDS.
When fully deployed, the Qu Dian system with a dedicated satellite
constellation will provide real-time tactical communications and data transfer
capabilities to PLA commanders to conduct effective joint operations.
Another military communication satellite, the ShenTong-1 (ST-1) was
launched in November 2003. In addition to communication satellites, China
has also launched the Tianlian data relay satellite to support its manned
spaceflight programme considerably enhancing the Chinese reach.
Recent developments have seen a substantial improvement in
Chinese remote-sensing capabilities with a gradual migration from film
recovery systems to real-time digital data downlinks. China has also
embarked on an ambitious Positioning Navigation and Timing (PNT)
programme based on Beidou satellites which is being touted as a regional
competitor to the American GPS. Thus it is increasingly becoming clear
that Chinese space based C3I capabilities are increasing at such a rapid
pace that it may become difficult for India to offset the Chinese edge unless
urgent steps are taken to increase Indian military presence in space.
But more than mere military satellites, it is the growing Chinese offensive
capability in space which should be worrying Indian policy makers. China
has been carrying out R&D on fundamental technologies applicable to ASAT
weapons system since the 1960s. The Central committee of Communist
party has reportedly given the highest priority to development of anti-
surveillance ASAT systems. The Chinese have concentrated their ASAT
efforts in developing ground-based high energy lasers (HEL), ground or air
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launched interceptor missiles, high power microwaves, parasitic satellites,
micro-satellites and ‘hunter-killer’ satellites. In addition to the famous ASAT
test of 2007, in August 2006, China had fired high-power lasers at American
intelligence satellites flying over its territory and caused disruption. Another
DoD reports suggest that China may also be developing systems to jam US
navigation satellite signals. In the words of Lt Gen Kevin Campbell,
commander of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command – “(China
will be capable) of taking out a number of communications capabilities over
a theater of war”. This emphasis on ASAT systems is suggestive that China’s
may be keen to develop have a long term capability to fight future space
wars, if the need so arises.
In the context of the Chinese offensive space warfare capabilities the
events which led to the Shenzhou 7 controversy in 2008 are also noteworthy.
The spacecraft passed unusually close (45 km) to the International Space
Station (ISS). There was little margin for error. At that time the $100 billion
space station had two Russians and one American aboard. Four hours
before Shenzhou’s point of closest approach to the space station, it
launched 40 kg manoeuvrable microsatellite BX-1 which contained two
cameras and communication gear. Many analysts speculated that keeping
in mind China’s track record of using all Shenzhou missions since 1999
for dual military-civil role, this manoeuvre might have been part of a test of
a new ASAT technology.
Chinese Space Doctrines
From the aims and objectives of the Chinese space programme it is
abundantly clear that the China considers its space capabilities as an
irrefutable part of her national defence matrix and an essential part of battle
planning. In formulating its own space doctrines, Chinese military theorists
have studied US and Soviet/Russian space doctrines on space war in detail
in order to evolve their own thinking. Broadly in alignment with the western
theories, Chinese space warfare doctrines too fall in two broad categories:-
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 161
♦ ♦♦ ♦♦ High Ground Doctrine.This includes what the Chinese military
analysts call ‘Battlefield Combatting’ which is akin in concept and
execution as the ‘Space control’ theory. This doctrine entails
development of offensive ASAT or SBSW (Space based strike
weapons) and aims to control a part of outer space to use it for
enhancing own operations and denying its use to the enemy. This
theory is similar to Aerospace control and Sea control theories of
terrestrial operations and seeks to control outer space in a similar
fashion. In concept and execution Chinese theories seem to be
influenced by the ‘High Ground’ or the ‘High Frontier’ doctrine of
the Americans. In the words of one of the leading Chinese space
theorists, Maj Gen Liu Jixian of the Chinese Academy of Military
Sciences- “Whoever controls space controls initiative in war”. This
statement succinctly sums up the Chinese attitude to space
warfare.
♦ ♦♦ ♦♦ Force Enhancement Doctrine. This doctrine is more ‘peaceful’
or ‘defensive’ in nature and is geared towards exploiting space
assets to support the conduct and execution of terrestrial
operations. The Chinese call it ‘Information supporting’ and include
activities like Intelligence, navigation, positioning, communications
etc in its ambit. This is perhaps the most common use of space
assets for military purposes and by and large within the ambit of
international space law. While China has a substantial number of
space assets deployed in this role, it seems to be set on a trajectory
to graduate from mere force enhancement to space domination
and control.
Although China is developing and has developed capabilities to support
both doctrines, the Chinese long-term interest in ASAT weapons and micro-
satellites is perhaps indicative that ‘High Ground’ space doctrine is acquiring
prominence in Chinese strategic thought. China’s military theorists also
view ASAT and offensive space capabilities as means to offset the
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asymmetric advantage enjoyed by the US. China is also uneasy about US
BMD developments and some Chinese writings state that “The US is trying
to build a strategic external border in space”. In the words of one of the
leading Chinese military space theorists Maj Gen Cai Fengzhen- “Control
of portions of outer space is a natural extension of other forms of territorial
control” and “space control today is the way to guarantee the control of
airspace…… and is an absolute necessity for conducting modern
informationalised warfare”. Other analysts like Senior Col Zhang Zhiwei of
Nanjing Army Command Academy argue that Space supremacy must be
an integral part of other forms of supremacy over the battlefield. Some
theorists advocate- space be used to “carry out war between space
platforms and to attack strategic surface and air targets”.
The Chinese thoughts on ‘sovereignty’ over space are also interesting.
While China is a signatory to most international conventions and protocols
on space and subscribes to the theory that space is the ‘common heritage’
of mankind, there are rumblings in the military establishment that could
point to a possible change in the future. It is well known that China has
been sensitive to military reconnaissance of its landmass and EEZ by
satellites and some Chinese analysts have compared reconnaissance to
‘battlefield preparation’. These fears were further accentuated by the
incident when satellite pictures of China’s new Jin class submarine which
appeared on Google Earth on 5 Jul 07. This incident caused much
consternation and breast beating in the PLA. As a result some Chinese
military theorists have started to argue that concept of national sovereignty
be extended to outer space as well, although this is not the official position
of the Chinese establishment.
Conclusion
In conclusion it is obvious that PLA sees war in space as an integral part of
military operations and advocates use of both offensive and defensive
operations in outer space. Space is thus a key component of the Chinese
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 163
RMA and a crucial component of its national security strategy. Not only
does China has a substantial space capability to support surface operations
by way of navigation, targeting, ISR etc, but it is one of the few nations to
have carried out a successful ASAT test in 2007. Interestingly, post the
ASAT test, China proposed a draft treaty on ‘Prevention of the Placement
of Weapons in Outer Space and the Threat of Use of Force Against Outer
Space Objects’ jointly with Russia. While some analysts see this as a
change of heart prompted by the international outcry over the space debris
created by the test which endangered many space objects. Others see it a
form of ‘Legal Warfare’ consistent with the Chinese record of utilising
international law to prevent its potential future competitors from acquiring
similar capabilities. What are the real Chinese motives behind this rather
surprising move remains a moot question.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 165
Session III : Discussion
Issues Raised
Do we know anything about PLA’s training patterns and philosophy? What
are the PLA Navy and Air Force aiming for?
Response
Generally, training patterns and philosophy behind People’s Liberation Army,
Navy and Air Force would give some idea of what the Chinese Armed
Forces themselves must be thinking about. They say the same thing,
‘Many countries do train, as you will fight’. Training gives an indication and
is guided by the operational planning department of a country. The Chinese
have published a book which mentions ‘24 Operational Plans’ and gives
instructions as to how the China’s Army, Navy, Air Forces and Rocket Forces
would be involved in counter attack campaigns to meet various
contingencies. Some of these 24 Operational Plans are related to:-
(a) Mountain Warfare.
(b) Cover for submarines to penetrate an island blockade of China.
(c) How to eliminate enemy airfields in a surprise attack?
(d) Joint missions by missile forces, air force, infantry including air
borne forces in a surprise attack.
(e) How Chinese forces can conduct joint operations against landing
forces?
For example, ‘Joint Nuclear Counter Attack Campaign’ indicates that
the Chinese approach seems to be, “to wait, not to have nuclear retaliation
166 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
within an hour or 15 minutes; but to wait for a period of days or upto a
week” and this particular training campaign has to do with Second Artillery
Forces. It also mentions how the PLA Navy and Air Force are involved in
counter attack campaigns.
The importance of this book can be realised fully only if its English
translation is made. The fact that its Chief Editor is the former Director of
Operations for the entire Chinese Armed Forces, it does give some idea
about the Chinese training philosophy. Their focus on counter attacks
suggests that, ‘China lives in a world of threats’ – one of the scenarios is
‘Counter Landing Campaigns’. China has identified a number of beaches
that are perceived to be vulnerable; and needs to maintain forces against
amphibious landings by unnamed foreign countries.
In terms of money, China has earmarked $ 500 billion each for the
PLA Navy and the Air Force – and more than that for the ground forces.
For them to acquire weapons to meet these training scenarios would be
very expensive. Actually, the American and Indian soft power should assure
China that no foreign country has any aggressive attack plans against
them. On the other hand, their ‘training scenarios’ frighten the rest of the
world; and that if China decides to follow the spirit of Confucius, they could
devote all their money for solving numerous internal problems – which
everyone is aware of.
Issue Raised
The Chinese nuclear strategy has been presented today in a very
supplicative way, arguing that the USA and Russia should take the lead in
creating a nuclear weapon free world. China has also advocated and
strenuously asked all the countries long ago to join NPT. What kind of
measures China itself can take in order to convince the entire world that
they are very serious about a nuclear weapon free world?
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 167
Response
China has taken some measures to indicate that they take the concept of
nuclear weapon free world seriously. The first one is about the CTBT and
the second one is on fissile materials cut off treaty. The Chinese have
also shown their urgency by playing a constructive role in next year’s NPT
Review Conference. Actually, all these measures have not yet resulted
into concrete steps because majority of the Chinese nuclear arms
controllers think that the USA should ratify the CTBT first and China will
follow suit. However, some Chinese analysts do think that they ought to
take the lead to ratify the CTBT as that would make it easier for Obama to
persuade the US Senate to ratify the treaty. In the process of debate, China
has already dropped some pre-conditions to put the treaty negotiations in
Geneva at the Conference on Disarmament (CD) on the table. China may
not have gone far enough as yet, but, may be would do so now, especially
at the next years NPT Review Conference.
Issue Raised
Is there any possibility for China to replace the USA to be the number one
military budget country in the world in the next 10 to 20 years?
Responses
(a)The answer is ‘yes’. China can replace the USA as number one
defence spender in the world in the next 20 years. This is possible.
Comparing defence budgets of other countries is always an ongoing
exercise. According to Rand Corporation studies, China’s defence
spending is relatively low – 3 per cent of its GDP, whereas the USA
and Russia’s defence spending exceeded 30 per cent of their GDP.
The Chinese are right when their soft power projection says that, their
defence spending - 1.5 to 3 per cent of GDP is quite low in comparison
with other countries. It is so, because it is intended to persuade other
countries to remain complacent, not to engage in military planning or
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weapons acquisition and also not take the rise of China’s military power
as a serious matter. This is the goal of soft power. As one speaker
said yesterday, ‘China is always right’. This is part of soft power.
(b) But there is another important side to the case. It takes at least 10
years to prepare forces to meet the security challenges through
operational goals and plans. The training has to include ‘low’ and ‘worst’
case scenarios. Although the chances of China hurting India, as of
now, seem to be low, but the possibility of something like 1962
happening again has to be taken into consideration by the strategic
thinkers and planners. They perforce have to keep track of overall
Chinese military modernisation and to maintain pressure on DRDO
to develop weapon systems indigenously.
(c) Every country has a right to plan and prepare its forces to defend
its territory. So, the military modernisation of China should not be
branded as a threat.
(d) Neighbouring and big countries are apprehensive about the
Chinese military modernisation and have got a problem in assuaging
the feeling of insecurity emanating from this phenomenon. Therefore,
it should continue to be assessed and discussed.
STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 169
Session III: Chairman’s
Concluding Remarks
It was my great pleasure to have chaired this session. The five panellists
have given us a great deal of knowledge from which the strategic community
can learn much. I am sure this discussion will help the strategic discourse.
We need more of these sessions to keep abreast with developments in
the neighbourhood and the world.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS
OF CHINA’S RISE :
BUILDING AN ENDURING
POWER EQUATION IN ASIA
FOURTH SESSION
Chairman Shri K Raghunath, IFS (Retd)
First Paper Professor Han Hua ,
SIS Peking University
Second Paper Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda (Retd) ,
Okazaki Institute, Japan
Third Paper Professor Jaeho Hwang,
Korean Institute for Defence Analyses
Fourth Paper Professor Sujit Dutta,
Jamia Milia University
Discussion
Closing Remarks Shri Shiv Shankar Menon, IFS
Foreign Secretary
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 173
Session IV : Chairman’s
Opening Remarks
Ambassador K Raghunath
First of all, I join the USI in welcoming all the members of the esteemed
audience and the distinguished panellists. I would also like to join you in
thanking USI for organising this very wide ranging and exhaustive seminar.
I would like to underline the fact that they are redoubtable experts in their
own respective fields and have also been very articulate and active in
educating the public in their own countries and also in communication with
the outside world – the strategic community in other countries including
India. I must also add, with respect to our participants from China, Japan
and Korea that we value their involvement in Track-II communication with
us. We value the contribution they have made in promoting cooperation,
understanding and goodwill both bilaterally and in the multilateral context.
Our participant from India, Professor Sujit Dutta is well known as a
prominent member of the strategic community here in India. His presence
here underlines the fact that he represents the growing interest in ‘China
Studies’ in India. The point that our participants from abroad need to take
note of is that China is a serious subject in India.
I begin with a few preparatory remarks to reiterate some truisms which
have been visited earlier, because it would be useful to do so. First of all of
course, the terminology – the word ‘rise’ which has been used very
frequently here. I do not wish to pre-empt our Chinese friends but I do
recognise from the literature on the subject and especially from what has
been said in various fora by spokesmen from China that they would like to
rectify this term in the old Confucian sense. I would leave this task to our
174 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
friends from China but I would like to point out here that this term is actually
a reflection of ‘perceptions’ only and it does not carry any particularly loaded
connotation. It’s a shorthand code-word, so you may interpret that word in
any other way.
The subject of this particular session is: ‘Regional Implications of
China’s Rise and Building an Enduring Power Equation in Asia’. This
particular rubric in some fashion has been replicated in seminars held in
this city a few days ago and some of the worthies who organised these
seminars are either present or were present in this hall yesterday. For
example, ICWA seminar talked about ‘Prospects for Partnership’. These
are variations and two sides of the same coin. I underline this point because
in this particular seminar there is a focus on one specific aspect, which is
covered in the term ‘Power Equations’. That is important because this
terminology was also chosen deliberately and meant to convey some
meanings. I hardly need add that both these aspects are conveyed or
represented in the two different seminars – today’s and the one I referred
to. They are actually complementary. This is a truism, but in the context of
regional power equations and regional cooperation it needs to be said that
any relationship whether bilateral or multilateral, particularly in the regional
context, has two dimensions. One is a very strong and inherent element of
cooperati on, partnershi p; harmony, dependence of course,
interdependence if you like, and at the same time also an element of
potential conflict; and the other is disharmony, confrontation, tension, conflict
etc. In order to build a stable and dynamic kind of power equation you
need really to make sure that the first of these two dimensions is maximised
and the second is minimised. I am putting it very simply but this is a very
difficult task, especially given the proximity and the neighbourhood factor
in a regional onslaught. So, statesmanship really means cultivating all the
possibilities and potential for cooperation and for partnership and at the
same time taking a realistic view of the other aspect i.e. idealism without
illusions. I think that is a good formula because we are really talking about
an approach to building power equations, in this region, which is devoid of
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 175
both extremes of utopianism, and also devoid of obsessive real politic.
This is doable and in fact that is really the task ahead for all those who are
involved in advancing or promoting regional cooperation. With good faith
and vision these things can be done. Seminars like this itself underlines
the point. It is significant that there is a growing preoccupation with bringing
about an architecture of regional security and cooperation in our part of
the world. Just as well, because unless we do this, we are losing something
in terms of realising the national potential. This is a thought that I would
like to leave with you.
There is one more aspect which needs attention. This refers to the title
of this session – ‘Enduring Power Equation’. If you compare it with the
aspect of ‘cooperation’; i.e. economic cooperation and other types of
functional cooperation, in substantive areas, it certainly helps to moderate
the climate and creates a milieu for cooperation. But this is not a sufficient
condition. It is unfortunately the case that we need to address the ‘security’
aspect independently of anything else and it has to be done. Once we
face that reality then we are on good ground and that is why this particular
seminar is important.
Before I conclude, I want to flag a few points about; What needs to be
done? These general principles would also draw attention to something
that the panellists would be addressing. We need to understand : Why
things are not necessarily shaping the way they should at a given point of
time? This is the question that has to be answered. On the positive side,
the basic requirements are:
(a) Understanding and respecting the legitimate national aspirations
and national interests of every big and small country and also the
specific circumstances of each country would enable us to understand
why certain decisions are taken. We presume that they are taken in
good faith most of the time, and taking into account the neighbourhood
location, history and other such factors.
176 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
(b) Equal legitimate security at a minimal possible cost.
(c) ‘Power Equation’, yes. But we have to eschew some of the crimes
and follies of the 19
th
Century which led to terrible catastrophes. Asia,
is not condemned to repeat all the mistakes of Europe, provided we
are aware that some of the old constructs like ‘balance of power’,
‘spheres of influence’, ‘the great game’, the idea of a ‘dominant power’,
are all outmoded. There has to be a conscious effort to factor them
out and do something else.
(d) The fact is that all of us face common challenges – regional
challenges, global challenges which bind us together. Terrorism is
one of them. I would underline here that anyone who believes that
terrorism in one part of the world or in one part of a region is the
problem peculiar to that part of the region is asking for trouble. A
heavy price would have to be paid for that kind of approach. Secondly,
there are other security related aspects not excluding disarmament
(including nuclear disarmament), the economic aspect, ecology and
other problems like natural disasters, culture, human welfare and so
on.
(e) It is a well known principle, that security is not related to the military
dimension alone – comprehensive national strength, comprehensive
national security, all very valid concepts, but the ‘military-political’ aspect
is important. That is what is going to be focused on here.
(f) The WHO definition of health, applies to security and to power
equations and to cooperation. But health is not merely freedom from
illness and disease; it is a positive state of being and that is what one
looks for.
Dynamic and stable equilibria and relations in which problems are
discussed consensually are important. There would be some specific
questions which would be addressed by the panelists e.g. who are the
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 177
powers we are talking about? There are some countries which are not clearly
defined as being Asian. The USA of course is a case in point. There are
others in Oceania, Australia and New Zealand, Russia, where do they fit in.
I think this is a matter of definition because the term Asia itself has to be
looked at carefully. So, this question I hope will be addressed when we talk
about power equations.
Then the role of Track-II dialogue is extremely important. All the points
that I have mentioned have been examined and discussed threadbare
during this particular seminar yesterday. However, new insights are always
welcome and they are needed. This search for truth helps us to move from
one state to the other. I am sure this seminar, through the wisdom, expertise
and experience of our panellists would add to the stock of awareness or
the storehouse of solutions that we might have. In that spirit, I would like
to invite the panelists to proceed with their presentations.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 179
Session IV : First Paper
Professor Han Hua
{This presentation is limited to the speaker’s observations based on
discussion in earlier sessions}
Presently, China is facing a ‘security dilemma’. China feels sandwiched
between a established power like the USA and its neighbours on the other
side. How to reassure both sides, about its thinking and security intentions,
is a very challenging job. Sometimes, it feels that the USA is a strategic
challenge and most pressures come from the US side. It has to prepare
for these challenges but at the same time there is a feeling that if Chinese
do something to upgrade their capabilities, other countries around it or
other areas feel threatened. How should it balance against these threats
in two directions? The thinkers have faith in the Chinese wisdom, but they
would need to learn more about diplomacy to resolve this dilemma.
The second point about the rise of China is that dealing with a rising
power is not a one way solution. Although China should do something to
decrease threat perceptions and sensitivities of other countries, but at the
same time, the established powers and neighbours should also review
their approach towards the rising power. How they would do that would be
meaningful for China. China’s policy is made by their overall evaluation of
the international environment. China needs a peaceful environment for
sustaining its economic development. The Chinese say, “you can choose
the way you live but you cannot choose where you are staying or located”.
China has the most number of neighbouring states around it. That is why
China’s rise has implications for other regions, – which may not be limited
only to East Asia and South Asia or South East Asia. It is indeed very
180 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
challenging for China to take into consideration the sensitivities and
perspectives of so many neighbouring countries.
The third point is about China’s strategic capabilities and overall military
capability build up. How the military thinks about its role and probable
postures? In China, or may be in other countries like India too, the military
people tend to talk more about, worst case scenarios. They have to prepare
for the worst scenario but at the same time there is another Chinese saying,
“you have to prepare for the worst but at the same time you have to pursue
the most favourable outcome”.
Military is only part of the overall policy making community in China
and China is not a militarily controlled country. You should note that in
China’s nine member Standing Committee, Hu Jintao is the only one chief
military commander – the rest are non military officers. Therefore, they
have civilian culture. They do have civilian control over the military. We do
not think Chinese military dominates decision making – that is for sure.
The policies are made by the leadership or working groups and not by the
military. But, at the same time, China is a responsible power. Perhaps, this
is not what you would like to hear. China tries its best to reassure its
neighbours and other countries that its rise would be peaceful in the 21
st
Century.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 181
Session IV: Second Paper
Mr Hideaki Kaneda
This paper covers military and naval matters related to multilateral
cooperation for Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC) security. The
observations on ‘Rising Importance of Sea Lanes’ will cover the following
aspects:-
(a) Confrontation in Korean peninsula and across Taiwan straits.
(b) Rapid build-up of the Chinese Military Power.
(c) Disputes over territories in South China Sea, East China Sea and
other places.
(d) Maritime interests in the vicinity of Japan – dispute with China in
East China Sea.
(e) Proliferation of WMD and Ballistic Missiles.
(f) International Terrorism and Piracy, specially in Malacca and
Singapore Straits.
(g) Organised illegal activities at sea and the ‘Strategic Chinese bases
in the Vital Sea Lanes’; i.e. ‘String of Pearls’.
“Security of sea Lanes” is a common key word in discussing all these
issues. Japan, the USA as well as regional countries should note that
‘multilateral cooperation’ would be ‘vital for SLOC’. Not only security but
regional economy and stability also depend on security of SLOC. Security
of SLOC should be considered based on the concept of ‘Broad Sea Lanes’
protection. A sea lane does not end in a ‘Single Region’. Broad Sea Lanes
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(BSL) running through the Indian Ocean, via Asia-Pacific to the Oceania
or South Pacific in expanded Asia, becomes vital as ‘lifelines’ to meet
security and economic needs of the ‘Unified Region’. Therefore, there are
emerging needs for multilateral cooperation between reliable and like-
minded maritime powers to ensure the security of BSL in expanded Asia.
The core maritime power would be centred around Japan as well as the
USA in the North and East; and in the East-West-South Expanded Asia,
India, Japan, the USA and Australia would be important players.
Now let us take a look at the historical relationships amongst the related
countries. First is the long Japan-US maritime alliance, which is viewed
as a ‘core’ military alliance. The deepening and widening of the Japan-US
alliance was assured and confirmed at the recent visit of Mr Obama to
Japan. Obama and Hatoyama have assured of a ‘tight and equal
relationship’ in their core role for security of BSL because of high
expectations from Japan and the USA.
Maritime security partnership between Japan-India-US (JIUS) is a key
to the relationships. The Indian Ocean has strategic importance across
the world. Earlier the USA referred to it as ‘an arc of instability’, it should
now be changed to read as ‘an arc of inseparability’. Each of these countries
recognises the need for cooperation on security of SLOC in East-West
expanded Asia. So far there is no formal ‘trilateral’ security arrangement
between them. From the Japanese perspective a global partnership has
been formed through the India-US relationship since the meeting between
President Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2005. Defence
cooperation guidelines in the same year set a new framework for India-US
defence relationship which included the maritime domain also. The US
Department of Defence (DoD) announced enhancement of security
cooperation with India which included maritime security in 2006. It was
followed by meeting between Mr Manmohan Singh and Mr Gates in 2008;
and also Mr Singh’s meeting with Mr Obama in Nov 2009. There has been
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 183
a substantial increase in cooperation through maritime exercises such as
‘Malabar’ in 2007.
The main feature of Japan-India relationship is a partnership of
historical sympathy. It is based on common values of freedom and
democracy. Substantial joint agreements / statements have been published
to give new dimension to the road map of strategic global partnership.
Recently, these have been followed up by two joint statements on security
cooperation by Japanese Prime Ministers Abe, Fukuda and Aso with Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh in 2006, 2007 and 2008. During Nov 2009,
Japanese Minister of Defence Katazawa and Indian Defence Minister
Anthony have also met. Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama’s visit to India
is also planned towards the end of 2009. In 2009 the Indian destroyer
which participated in the Chinese International Review, on it’s way back
after that, had a good exercise with Japan to which the USA was also
invited.
In the North-West expanded Asia, Japan, Australia, US (JAUS) have
a maritime alliance. They had the first trilateral summit in Syndey in 2007.
Japan and the USA urged security cooperation with Australia and India at
the ‘2+2’ Ministerial Meeting in 2007. Former Prime Minister Fukuda pushed
his Trilateral Strategic Dialogue and the Australian Prime Minister Rudd
confirmed the unchanged positive attitude towards it. Even though Japan,
the USA and Australia do not have any treaty arrangements but they do
have Trilateral Semi-Alliance and several cooperative security activities.
Many cooperative exercises were held in 2007 and 2008, which included
the P3-C’s Exercises in 2007.
Amongst bilateral relationships, the US-Australia alliance is akin to
blood relationship. Australian-United States Ministerial Consultations
(AUSMIN) and Australian, New Zealand and United States Security Treaty
(ANZUS) are maritime alliances which strengthen the fabric of peace in
the Asia Pacific. The new US administration has confirmed bilateral policy,
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on issues such as Iraq, BMD, anti-terrorism etc. They have historical ties
for cooperation on regional and global security issues to facilitate inter-
operability which includes missile defence. There is also increasing defence
cooperation in Iraq and international Disaster Relief Operations (DRO).
Japan-Australia is not an alliance but a semi-alliance. They share a
strong maritime partnership based on democratic values. There was a
joint declaration on security cooperation between Abe and Mr Howard in
2007. Since then Ministerial Security Meetings have continued. In 2008, a
Memorandum on Japan-Australia Defence Cooperation was signed. Both
countries have substantial cooperation and conduct frequent joint exercises
since 1996.
Next is the Japanese perspective on India-Australia relations. Australia
is reshaping its policy toward India, from Howard to Rudd, on security
around China. Is it possible to get a strong breakthrough on development
of defence cooperation? Refer to Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs
Stephen Smith’s statement in February 2008. Quadrilateral Maritime
Cooperation is difficult instantly. However, JIUS and JAUS trilateral
cooperation would be possible in the future.
JIUS Maritime Security partnership and JAUS Maritime Semi-alliance
should take responsibilities appropriate to their national power as major
stakeholders of maritime security coalition with other democratic maritime
powers for security of Broad Sea Lanes – JIUS in East West and JAUS in
North South expanded Asia.
What is Maritime Security Coalition? It must be a nation to nation
coalition with a common objective – to maintain and secure safe and free
use of ‘ocean’s sea lanes’ from the peacetime to emergency situations.
Network of activities based on ‘common values’ – common value must be
a key word in such interactions, not a treaty, but maritime coalition based
on strong mutual trust, responsibility of each nation proportionate to its
national situation and capacity.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 185
What should be the pre-condition for Maritime Security Coalition? It
should be possible to share three basic interests in the maritime domain
with others. First is ‘existence’ i.e. security interests, second would be
‘prosperity’ i.e. economic interests; and third one is ‘identity’. Common
values that would interest all are: disaster relief, restoration, rescue and
conservation of environment/resources in maritime domain. It would be
expected of the member countries that their actions are guided by
democratic norms and based on the concept of public good and service to
others. Likeminded democratic countries would not have disputes over
maritime sovereignty or interests and would adhere to international norms
in resolving problems in a fair manner. Each member of JIUS or JAUS
would stand for maritime security of the four coalition countries and would
be eager to do so in a positive manner. Japan’s active interest in improving
international security is addressed in the National Defence Programme
Guidelines (NDPG) which is like QDR in the USA. India’s policy of ‘more
cooperation with others in maritime domain’ was stated by Admiral Sureesh
Mehta. The USA’s willingness for ‘more cooperation with others’ in Global
Maritime Partnership was confirmed by Admiral Roughead. Australia’s
‘Stronger Security Partnership with others’ is stated in Defence White Paper
2009.
The main subject is ‘Broad Maritime Security Coalition (BMSC)’. JIUS
Maritime Security Coalition in East-West expanded Asia should be tied up
with JAUS Maritime Security Coordination in North-South expanded Asia,
towards constituting BMSC in the whole expanded Asia in the future. May
be, that would include the South Pacific island nations or such countries
also. Broad Maritime Security Coalition should eventually develop towards
global stage – Japan’s BMSC Initiative coincides with Japan’s Diplomatic
Policy. Former Prime Minister Abe said ‘the coalition of nations is based
on common values. Former Prime Minister Fukuda said, ‘synergy’ with
Japan-US Alliance and ‘diplomacy’ towards Asia. Former Prime Minister
Aso talked of ‘Arc of freedom and prosperity’. The current prime minister
186 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Hatoyama said, ‘Fraternity, diplomacy and East Asia community’. These
are very important things for us, if we have to make the coalition succeed.
We need deep cooperation with ASEAN countries because it is the
geographic centre of expanded Asia. Many strategic or regional policy
frameworks, are needed. Strait of Malacca is vital as a choke point. Illegal
activity in the vast waters including island areas needs to be checked.
Some of them are reliable democratic maritime powers whereas others
have relatively weaker navy and coast guards. Capacity building and
humanitarian support by Japan and other countries is essential.
We need to constitute the JIUS and JAUS Maritime Security Coalition
with democratic power groups in East-West and North-South expanded
Asia. Aiming for unification of 2+2 or specific security channels might be
suitable. Coordinating soft maritime cooperation by every coastal state
including China is important in addition to existing regional cooperative
agreements: Asian Regional Forum (ARF), Western Pacific Naval
Symposium (WPNS), Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS), or Japan’s
new initiative in East West community support.
Chairman’s Remarks
Thank you Admiral Kaneda for your very comprehensive and in depth
treatment of a very specific and important aspect of the security structures
and security arrangements in our region. There is much food for thought
here, not only for Admirals but for all of us who are engaged with this idea
of promoting stable structures of cooperation and security in this region.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 187
Session IV : Third Paper
Professor Jaeho Hwang
The hot topic during President Obama’s recent visit to Asia was ‘China’s
Rise’. It is evident from frequent references to the expression ‘the G2 era’
that we are now witnessing the coming of US-China ‘Bipolar era’. This
also signifies the sharing of mutual concerns amongst countries around
the world - How to respond to this China, that is shoulder to shoulder with
the USA? South Korea is no exception. May be, some states may not
agree with this logic. Even China itself denies the use of expression G2.
However for China’s neighbours, such as South Korea, the ‘Rise of China’
is not a matter of ‘if’ but a reality of ‘when’ that happens!
Climate change is becoming a hot agenda for international community
and the issue has already unravelled in South Korea’s security environment.
We are now thinking about questions of what sort of air we breathe and in
what kind of climate we must live in. The rise of China has come to dominate
South Korean way of thinking. The topic of my presentation today is, ‘South
Korea’s perspective on China’s rise’. There are basically three questions.
First, how has the world framework changed? Second, can China become
the world’s number one superpower? Third, what are the strategy
implications for South Korea’s security, given China’s rise? The first is,
‘Need for long term changes to the framework’, the second, ‘Prospects
and the immediate short term changes’, and finally, ‘An explanation of South
Korea’s policy towards China’.
Perhaps, not looking as far ahead as the year 2050; but, just 15 years
from now, by 2025 the international order is expected to change into a
multi-polar power shift, with the USA and China as core countries. We can
predict the possibility of China becoming a super power in a future time
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frame but not by the year 2025. Theoretically, a country aspiring to become
a superpower must meet three criteria – capability, will and recognition. By
2025, China would probably fail to meet all three. However, it would attain
the state of quasi-superpower by 2025. To reach that state China would
have to overcome several political, economic and security obstacles.
Together with long term predictions, we need to examine short term
changes in the framework. First, the USA is reconfiguring policy on better
lines now. Bush’s diplomacy weakened cooperation between major powers,
allies and friendly nations. The Obama Administration is strengthening
cooperation with powers and allies and even extending hand to hostile
countries. The international community is welcoming and embracing
President Obama. This is a new chance for the US initiative. Hu Jintao’s
diplomatic strategy is ‘harmonious world’. Harmony is regarded as the
universal value of global order and is dependent on soft power. However,
China’s ‘harmonious world’ benefited relatively speaking from the US
indifference and lack of interest in the region during the Bush period and it
has been successful so far. While the USA was disinterested, China was
busy consolidating its regional influence. The country that could have played
the part of competing with China, in place of the USA, was Japan. Japan
did not exert its presence, and it’s diplomacy lacked initiative and creative
ideas. However, Prime Minister Hatoyama’s ‘fraternity’ diplomacy may bring
another chance for Japan’s new diplomatic initiative. In the short term, the
competition with the USA and Japan on one side and China on the other
side, for having an influence over the regional countries, will be very fierce.
If China’s ‘harmonious world’ lasts for the next three years and if Obama’s
policy initiatives fail to show results, voices calling for new system will rise.
China and Korea have a very close relationship in various areas such
as politics, economy, culture and security. Both nations established
diplomatic relations in 1992. The status was elevated to ‘strategic
cooperative partnership’, just last year. Both countries are moving towards
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 189
more mature relations. We must pay attention to at least eight
considerations that may influence the future Sino-Korean relationship:-
(i) Is China’s rise today a reality?
(ii) Will China surpass the USA in the future?
(iii) What are the contents of Sino-US relations?
(iv) What kind of power will China be – hegemonic or benign?
(v) Regional countries’ policies towards China.
(vi) China’s position on historical disputes.
(vii) Will the USA maintain its alliance commitments indefinitely?
(viii) Most importantly, what would be China’s role in the process of
Korea’s reunification i.e. to what extent will China support or oppose
reunification?
In the long term, South Korea will take into account all mid to long
term factors and its possibilities. Here a favourable posture by the USA
and China on the Korean peninsula will become a critical factor for South
Korea. However, an important matter for South Korea is not, whether to
make a strategic shift but to recongise the changing framework. For the
time being Korea’s future national strategy will keep the ‘alliance’ relationship
with the USA. At the time when China itself keeps Pyong Yong strategy
with the USA, Korea’s choosing China would be a risk. It may be unwise
to narrow down the range of our own options. However, Korea would like
to maintain a strategic cooperative partnership with China and a multilateral
security framework. Considering that South Korea’s short term China policy
has been to elevate the relationship every five years, it is possible that the
relationship will again be elevated to a greater status in the year 2013.
When a new government comes into office in the year 2013, the two states
might consider a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership. In the
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next few years, Korea’s China policy would not change too much because
of reasons such as economic relations and the North Korean nuclear issue.
However, ROK-US alliance will be a decisive factor in improving Sino-
South Korean relations. This represents a psychological red line.
In order to maximise South Korea’s strategic value and to strengthen
diplomatic competitive power, South Korea’s diplomacy must be extremely
flexible. Korea will need to employ multi-dimensional diplomacy. First,
since South Korea is an Asian state, it must focus on its relations with
other Asian states. Second, Korea must enhance its image as a democratic
State by contributing to the international society. Third, it must become a
middle power, as a stronghold for North East Asia, with a capacity to
influence international consensus. This will reinforce South Korea’s
strategic value.
Chairman’s Remarks
You will note that Professor Hwang has entered the interesting realm of
futurology as a prognosis. He has done so in a very scientific manner.
Probabilities have been examined and the pronouncements made by him
are very sound. We will have to study these very carefully. This is the kind
of exercise that all countries in this region need to do. He has also given
us a kind of update on China and ROK relations and how it has progressed,
and how it is likely to develop.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 191
Session IV : Fourth Paper
Professor Sujit Dutta
My presentation will focus more on politico-strategic issues rather than
military issues – hard questions that shape China’s rise and its relationship
with the rest of Asia. Asia would be the way China sees it. It is essentially
seen in terms of its periphery. Defined in terms of neighbourhood, it will
cover North-East, East, South-East and Central Asia. That is the kind of
milieu in which China’s power is rising and that is the kind of milieu on
which it will have direct influence as its power grows. There are three or
four basic points that shape and reflect the implications of China’s rise for
Asia.
China’s role in the international system has changed dramatically since
1978-79 when the reforms began. As a result of that, the linkages with the
West and Japan meant that, a new kind of economic, structural context
has come about where China is deeply embedded now in the global supply
chains – interdependence has been created. Foreign capital is deeply
involved in China and it has now become a central part of the process that
runs the world economy in many ways. That is an outcome of the previous
30 years of reform, which China had deliberately chosen. Globalisation
has benefitted China and it has deliberately chosen the path of globalisation
as part of its reform strategy. It has brought huge gains. GDP, which was
about $ 200 billion in 1978-79, has now become $ 2.6 trillion which is
about 11 times growth – quite stupendous in terms of purely economic
terms. It has added to, from the Chinese perspective, into their overall
‘Comprehensive National Power’. China does not see itself as Japan. It
sees itself as great power with all kinds of capabilities. Therefore, China’s
overall strategy is to become a great power and a pre-eminent power in
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Asia – a possible peer competitor with the United States. The USA has
been a reference point constantly. This has raised dilemmas for them.
How much to build? What happens with the nature of American defence
expenditure? How much China’s defence expenditure should be? These
are questions that flow from that kind of goal setting which is to become a
peer competitor at some point and to become a greater power. Therefore,
the reforms are in a way a strategy to achieve it. Therefore, the globalisation
of China, it’s entry into different institutions, etc. have their own dynamics.
From the Chinese political strategic point of view, they all head towards
attaining great power status as early as possible.
No one can deny that China given its size, its civilisational length, its
vision of itself, its security context, should become an ultimate power –
that is not the question. The question is: When China tries to become a
great power what does it mean to the others who are around it, others who
also are either great powers currently or aspire to be one? Principally, four
countries are directly affected in this context. The USA, which is a dominant
power and Japan, which is an ally of the USA and a neighbour of China –
is directly affected by long years of tussle and tensions. Russia, weakened
substantially but nonetheless a power that sees itself as a major Eurasian
entity, and finally India. Essentially, the Chinese relationships with these
four countries are critically important as it seeks to become a great power.
Chinese strategies have to constantly figure out as to how their goal setting
affects the national ambitions and goals of these four countries; and the
kind of structures and ideologies that others bring to the table. Whether
there would be tensions within these goals is something that is critically
important. Despite the tensions and historical problems that have existed
in many of these relationships, as far as China is concerned, all these
powers have helped to make China’s rise possible.
China’s current reforms and globalisation strategy and growth would
not have been possible without the US and Japanese help. That is clear.
Americans opened the doors to make possible China’s entry into the global
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 193
system, post-1978-79. The US-China rapprochement was critical to that
success and Japan’s aid, etc., played a very important role as well.
Russians have increasingly helped the Chinese modernisation process,
after the Soviet Union collapse. It began during Gorbachev’s time itself.
India has been a constant supporter of China’s entry into the international
system – even when our relations were balanced in terms of realist politics.
It did not make much sense. But India continued to support China’s entry
in Security Council, even when the relations were at rock bottom. India
accepted Tibet as a part of China when the boundary issue was not settled.
Many other examples can be given.
In a situation where these powers are currently engaging China in
order to shape the international environment, in which their mutual interests
have become integrated and because of globalisation and international
cross-border economic linkages, it is very important to maintain stability.
China’s surge for global power status must keep in mind the interest and
the context in which this engagement is taking place. If China continues to
surge for equality in terms of military expenditure and other capabilities
with the USA it will have a direct implication for the overall stability of this
relationship. A comparative defence expenditure kind of viewpoint on missile
count and other considerations like dominance of the sea, will have very
different implications. It would complicate and make China’s overall strategic
environment far more difficult. Pursuing this line of thinking will lead to a
set of consequences; particularly because, there are significant differences
between these four countries – The USA, India, Japan are democracies
and in terms of sovereignty – there are problems that exist between India
and China, and Japan and China. Because of intended linear projection of
power aggrandisement, over time, mutual tensions between these countries
have the potential of getting out of hand.
There is a second element to it which is normative in nature, because
it follows from ideological and strategic cultures. We all know that there
are two strands of traditional Chinese strategic culture – the Confucian
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and the real politic. It is real politic strategic culture that has dominated
Chinese thinking, even though post-Mao years have seen significant
modification, in order to make cooperation with the outside world possible.
This stand remains, especially within the military and the political
establishment; although, there are others within the Chinese establishment,
who would like to see increasingly liberalised policies to take place.
Nonetheless, the dominant culture appears to be still rooted in realism. In
that sense, a competitive ‘balance of power’ approach, is constantly on
the mind of the Chinese. Therefore, ‘Comprehensive National Power’ and
its comparison with the others constantly figure within the strategic
community’s thinking. There are problems relating to how others perceive
the ‘peaceful rise’ theory or the current theory of ‘harmonious world’ order.
In the context of a normative culture of realism, real politic thinking seems
to be on tactical lines rather than strategic long term belief changes. They
seem to us to fit into the theory, ‘bide your time’. That is a tactical line
rather than a fundamental change in mindset and orientation of ideological
position. Ideological change in norms and strategy thinking is essential for
establishing a great power and peace over the coming years. There are
significant debates taking place within China on this. However, the realist
point of view still holds the dominant position.
A third element is China’s policy towards its neighbours in Asia. It can
be divided into two. One that takes into account, its opposition to the
major powers; and the other towards the smaller entities. The smaller
entities, which are not in alliance with a major power, have received far
more accommodation from the Chinese. Major powers, however, are
treated differently and in a far more competitive manner. Given the fact,
four important countries have a difficult history with China, means that
approaches towards them are to be shaped through a competitive lens.
This is visible, for example, in China’s approach towards the McMahon
Line vis-à-vis Burma and India. Clear discriminatory policy orientations
have significantly distorted and created new conditions for difficult
relationships.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 195
It should not be said that, changes in relationships have not taken
place. We must take note of the positive changes that have taken place in
each of these relationships vis-à-vis China. The US-China interaction is
recognised as a fundamental relationship of the world. Japan-China
relations have turned around – they are now the largest trade partners,
and Chinese students are now studying in Japan. India-China relations,
ever, since 1988 rapprochement, have flowered despite difficulties. But
underlying them are significant tensions. If they are not managed properly,
there is a likelihood of a different pathway which could be conflictual in
nature, as China’s power grows further.
India-China relations are currently based on the 1988 decision to open
a new chapter during Rajiv Gandhi’s visit to China. One of the elements of
that was ‘confidence building measures’ i.e. lowering of tensions, peace
and tranquility on the border as boundary talks continue to resolve the
disputes that exist; and the other ‘enhancing stakes in each other’s
economy’. Those policies have brought great benefits to the two countries.
The essential goal as far as India is concerned, and to a large extent
replicated by China, was to maintain long term stability in that relationship.
The hope continues to build-up on maintaining a long term India-China
stable relationship. Despite that in the last few years, continuously some
tensions have emerged. That is mainly because, while this framework has
worked well, the elements of dispute resolution, that should have moved
along simultaneously, have been stymied. The territorial problems have
become even more important, since 1988 when the principles were signed.
In 2005 some basic principles were again signed. They were however, not
clearly stated. Nonetheless, there were certain benchmarks. One of the
principles was, ‘keeping the interests of settled populations in mind’ which
essentially referred to the Arunachal question. That has now become a
flashpoint because the Chinese do not want to have the ‘settled population
theory’ being interpreted in terms of India’s sovereignty over Arunachal
Pradesh. This has become now a lietmotif in Chinese diplomacy.
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There is one fundamental problem that the Chinese strategic thinkers
and diplomats seem to forget. India’s recognition of Tibet as part of China
will become null and void if China says Arunachal is Southern Tibet. India
cannot wish away its own sovereignty in order to accept Tibet as part of
China. So, India’s recognition is inbuilt. India’s recognition of Tibet, as part
of China, can only be meaningful if Arunachal is not considered Southern
Tibet. If China continues to mention that Arunachal is Southern Tibet, then
the 1954 position goes. The 1954 position in legal terms does not exist. It
died in 1962, because that treaty was eight years old. In many ways the
Chinese have opened up a Pandora’s box by returning to historical
questions that were already settled. It has complicated the India-China
boundaries settlement further in a manner that the current diplomats and
the political class have not realised.
The second element was, meaningful strategic thinking on the Tibetan
issue. Both on Taiwan and Tibet, one of the principle of ‘re-look’ is necessary
– as far as China is concerned. Because while sovereignty has been
accepted by the world, in de facto terms ‘Taiwan is independent’ and in de
facto terms the ‘Tibetans are in exile’. Without reaching a deal and an
agreement, resolution of the problem is not going to be possible. On the
resolution of this hinges great power relationships significantly. In US-China
and Japan-China relationships the Taiwan factor is very much central and
Tibet question is central to India-China relationship.
‘Re-look’ on some of these relationships is essential. Political change
and ideological make-up regarding old sovereignty stances belonging to
pre-colonial and imperial days, cannot be translated into sovereignty control
today without accepting the vision, support and will of the people. Therefore,
a significant amount of rethink by the strategic community, as far as China’s
position and the Chinese strategy are concerned is necessary.
Keeping China’s relations with Pakistan vis-à-vis India out of the
purview of this presentation, it is important to look at: How China wants to
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 197
shape the strategic environment in South Asia? For example, understanding
the consequences of China undermining India’s security agreement with
Nepal needs a serious study. Without understanding the implications of
historical arrangements, there is a likelihood of the relationships getting
more complicated.
From here onwards, China has two choices – two pathways. One is
to change its notion of becoming a ‘great power’ through capability building,
as well as normative structure build-ups that flow from that kind of old
strategic thinking. It needs to carry out a ‘re-think’ on them. If it does not,
then there would be one path that would go towards increasing tension
and conflictual relations with the other great powers. It may possibly, due
to mutual security concerns, lead to a quasi alliance between the USA and
India – that could be one pathway.
The other pathway would require serious thinking, based on current
interdependencies that have already been created – in which all the other
great powers are willing to cooperate and engage China and move towards
it; rather than adopting unilateral policy postures for unilateral gains.
Interdependence would have to be rooted in shared gains, not unilateral
gains.
Chairman’s Remarks
Thank you Professor Dutta for a very lucid and wide ranging presentation.
You have attempted to cover the larger picture – a wide sweep that
complements the very specific and directed presentations from the other
three panelists. The candour with which certain issues have been put on
the floor, especially those relating to India-China relations, need attention
of all. In an academic discussion, this kind of candour is necessary. These
issues are up for ‘discussion’ and have to be studied through considered
research based on a process which would lead to conclusions. That is the
conclusion of the presentations by the four panelists. I must compliment
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and thank our esteem panellists for the kind of gravity and remarkable way
in which they took on their tasks.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 199
Session IV : Discussion
Issues Raised
In case China implodes, what kind of political system is likely to emerge?
What will be the impact of such political changes on China’s projected rise
in future?
Responses
(a)In China, people are talking about the political direction the country
should take, particularly after the collapse of the Soviet Union and
Russia giving up on their Communist political ideology. There is a
debate on as to what kind of democracy China should follow. They
are, however, certain that it would not be western type democracy –
like in Hong Kong, Singapore or other parts of the world. They have
not yet made up their minds on the choice of alternatives that would
suit the Chinese situation. The Chinese common sense is aware that
economic growth and political stability would continue to add to their
Comprehensive National Power.
(b)The Chinese leadership has been managing the requirement of
future reforms very well. They have established a ‘successor
mechanism’ through a coalition among entrepreneurs, politicians and
the military, which enjoys popular support. They will not pursue western
style political reforms, but are confident of maintaining economic
growth and political stability in the near future.
(c)China’s peaceful economic and military rise is complementary and
would continue to grow to fulfill Chinese aspirations in the 21
st
Century.
200 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Issues Raised
Are there any changes in the composition of the China Military Commission
(CMC) headed by Hu Jintao as the Chairman? Do the high ranking PLA
members form a part of the Central Committee also? What role does the
PLA play in strategic policy decision making?
Response
In China’s political system, it is the Polit Bureau which is at the top and not
the CMC. The Standing Committee comprising of nine members is at the
top end of the decision making system. In matters related to security the
PLA is free to voice their views for consideration by the CMC, but the final
decision on all matters is taken by the Standing Committee of the Polit
Bureau.
Issue Raised
What will be the role of ethnic minorities in China’s pursuit of becoming a
great power?
Response
The way China deals with the Uigurs, Tibetans and the Taiwanese is slightly
different in each case. Nonetheless, that would be critically important. It
would certainly be linked to ‘China’s rise as a great power’, because
perception of the world about, whether China would be a responsible power
would be determined on the kind of political arrangements it works out
with them. In the 21
st
Century liberal milieu the world needs to know whether
the military oriented Communist Party administration would pursue hard
line policies or it would choose to have some different kind of identity to
conform to current trends on human rights issues.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 201
Issue Raised
How should India interpret the bellicose statements being made by China
in recent months? Why is China making such statements against India?
Responses
(a)In the last four years the Arunachal question has come back to
the forefront because of the ‘ambiguities’ that were left in the 2005
Principles. The ambiguities were a result of lack of agreement as
consensus could not be achieved. Unlike parts of Aksai Chin, which
are not inhabited, Arunachal including Tawang, is a settled area with
citizens of India living there. Therefore, the whole situation has to be
seen in terms of population and not territory alone. In terms of
democratic politics it is ‘non-negotiable’. Unlike in the past, an ‘imperial’
change of territory cannot take place today. The reason this has
become such an issue is because the Chinese feel that they are losing
their position on their claim on account of democratic politics in
Arunachal Pradesh. That is the reason they are stressing their point
publicly and in the Asian Development Bank.
(b)With regard to territorial disputes, China accepts some points raised
by the Indian side. The problems, however, have arisen because
recently Indian side has taken some steps such as the visit of the
Prime Minister to Arunachal and allowing the Dalai Lama to visit the
area. Since China treats Tibet as a central issue, it is sensitive to any
action that undermines Chinese position related to its sovereignty and
integrity. Whenever high ranking Chinese officials interact with other
countries during their visits, they clearly talk about three No’s in Chinese
policy :-
(i) No transfer of weapons to Taiwan.
(ii)No meeting with Dalai Lama.
(iii) No supporting of the Xinxiang rebellion forces.
202 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
Issue Raised
If three likeminded nations Japan-India-USA (JIUS), arrange to come
together to keep out the ‘Super Power of 2025’ from the arrangements to
safeguard trade routes in the Indian Ocean, what would be China’s reaction
to such an arrangement?
Responses
(a)Under normal circumstances a few countries, even if they are not
likeminded, may come together to share the common goal of protecting
Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC) through anti-piracy actions in
outer Somalia or Gulf of Aden. China, Japan, Russia, India and South
Korea are conducting anti-piracy activities. Such cooperation would
come easily for common good. However, it would not be possible to
get such cooperation from every country in the region to meet
unforeseen emergency situations. That kind of arrangement would
work satisfactorily only amongst likeminded countries who share
common values and international standards for resolving conflicting
interests and issues. In the foreseeable future, there is a possibility of
China becoming a likeminded country alongwith Japan and India.
(b)China’s naval ships entered the Indian Ocean Region for anti-
piracy missions and to counter piracy in maritime area near Somalia.
The Chinese realise the urgency and see it as an opportunity to go
outside the waters around China. However, they have not figured out
their ‘two-ocean’ strategy as yet. The objective of China’s naval activity
in this area is very limited. So far, the Chinese decision makers are
not sure what to do next. Another issue in this context would be the
requirement of financial support for conducting such missions across
the Indian Ocean from the Gulf of Aden to Malacca Straits. China has
proposed a plan to take care of specific areas but it has not got similar
response from other countries as yet.
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 203
(c)The idea of dividing zones for controlling piracy is a very recent
idea. This is something which is being turned over in the minds of the
people. Under the circumstances the best course would be to prepare
for the ‘worst’ but pursue the ‘most favourable outcome’, and that
would take care of everyone’s interests and needs.
Issue Raised
China wants its neighbours to keep talking and solve the problems through
constant dialogue. However, it is always talking from a position of strength
and not equality. For example, take the case with India - despite many
meetings, the issues have remained unresolved. In such a situation, how
is it possible to continue the dialogue to solve mutual problems?
Response
It is difficult to give a definite answer this question. Diplomatic negotiations
are difficult processes in which leverages are brought to bear in order to
reach agreements. Therefore, much depends on the kind of leverages
India can bring to bear in terms of conditions of gains and losses. At some
point of time the solution would happen. However, in between the process,
there would be times when crisis can emerge – especially when the territorial
and sovereignty issues are involved. The process to agree on certain
principles is on in India – the sooner it is in place the better it would be. On
China’s side there is some rethinking, largely on populated areas. On
clearance of this obstacle, India-China territorial question could be settled
very soon and very quickly. China’s claim on Arunachal will have to be
given up as part of an overall settlement on the basis of the position India
has taken on Tibet. India has made two fundamental concessions on the
table, one, accepting Taiwan as part of a united China and, two, Tibet as
part of China. Chinese have not made even a single concession so far.
Issues Raised
To resolve India-China border dispute, both sides should agree in principle
204 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
to maintain status quo i.e. the Eastern sector may continue to be
administered by India and the Western sector by China leaving aside
sovereignty issues. Is it possible to have such arrangements as a basis to
start negotiations?
Responses
(a)Starting negotiations, based on this hypothetical proposition would
not be correct. The problem with that suggestion is that whereas Aksai
Chin in the Western sector has no population, Arunachal Pradesh is
a province of India. It is a populated provincial entity with a
democratically elected government in full administrative control. The
Chinese are objecting unrealistically to the whole democratic process
of elected assembly members, Chief Minister and the Prime Minister
visiting that area. The administrative situation here is different from
Aksai Chin. Therefore, such an anomalous situation as a starting point
for the negotiations would not be acceptable.
(b)Prime Minister Nehru made a last desperate attempt to bring peace
and goodwill between India and China in 1958. Even our Vice President
Hamid Ansari said recently that there is a lot of commonality of interest;
there is also a common faith between India and China. Our faith and
religion are deep rooted. Study of philology and anthropology also
shows similarities in many other things. If political and military leaders
on both sides think and ponder over it and talk more of the
commonality, then the rest of the world can sleep in peace.
Chairman’s Concluding Remarks
The last response from a distinguished member in the audience on India-
China relations was ‘well said’ to wind up the discussions today. The
presentations speak for themselves, therefore, it would be superfluous to
say anything more. I thank all the panellists for their very thoughtful and
stimulating presentations. They have succeeded in generating many issues
REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 205
that would require deep reflection by the distinguished audience to find the
right answers. I am aware that perhaps some questions were not answered
with the kind of depth and detail they deserved – that is inevitable in all
such seminars.
Today, actually the scope of discussion was enlarged beyond the title,
‘Building Enduring Power Equations in Asia’, and a lot of time was devoted
to bilateral India-China relations. That is just as well because this also is
part of the larger picture.
I thank you all for your engaged participation and USI for organising
this very stimulating and enriching event.
CLOSING REMARKS 207
Closing Remarks
Shri Shivshankar Menon, IFS
General PK Singh, Ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for asking me to
speak to you and to make some concluding remarks. You have also put
me in an awkward position, standing between such fine people and their
lunch. I will not even try to summarise what you have done over the last
two days, which I think has been very useful. Even to attempt to do so
would be a disservice to the speakers and would be impossible given the
range of opinions on China that we now display in India, which, I think, is
probably more than we ever had before.
I would like to make a few points on what I am taking away from the
part of the Seminar that I heard. I don’t think we have answered the question
in the title of the seminar, namely, whether a rising China is an opportunity
or a strategic challenge. To my mind, and from everything I have heard, it
is both. It is both an opportunity and a challenge. Over the last day and a
half day we have heard much more about the challenges than we did
about the opportunities a rising China would create. That is as it should be,
given the professions of most of us who are here. I know that every diplomat
thinks that he is an armchair general, and every general thinks he knows
‘diplomacy’ better than the diplomats do. Both of us think that we are
‘strategists’. So, this is inevitable – that we will end up stressing the
challenges as we did, at the end of this seminar. But for me, it has been a
very useful and a very timely exercise because you brought together a
range of scholars from around the world of great eminence. The quality of
discussion was really quite remarkable.
We seem to be in a China season in New Delhi. This is the fourth high
level seminar on China that I have been asked to speak to within less than
208 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
three weeks time. And, we may be witnessing the emergence of a new
national obsession here. For once, and unlike other such phenomena in
the past where we have been obsessed with Pakistan, and at certain stages
with others, I think that this interest in China is a useful obsession. It is
useful and necessary, if it helps to improve our understanding of this
phenomenon and our ability to deal with it rationally.
There are also other reasons why I consider it useful, apart from self
interest, having tried to study China now for about 40 years. It is useful for
Indian scholars to benchmark their work with a comparable society and
economy in terms of its size and development imperatives. Undoubtedly,
from an Indian point of view, certainly, the rise of China is the most important
development in our region and immediate neighbourhood. Since parts of
our periphery are also China’s periphery, it is inevitable that we will have
issues with each other that we have to work our way through quite apart
from the bilateral problems which divide us, which were mentioned at
various stages, but also larger issues. We will continue to have a relationship
between India and China which includes elements of both competition and
cooperation. I think that is natural and we might as well accept that rather
than getting upset or worried about it.
It would also be a useful obsession if it brought home to us in India
our own unique situation and interests, as many of your contributions
showed. Sujit Datta of Jamia Milia University was probably the most
articulate expression of this. India is both uniquely affected and also uniquely
placed to benefit from the rise of China, as many of the points made here
showed.
Everybody assumed that we are dealing with a new China; that China’s
behavior has changed over time. I sometimes wonder whether any power’s
rise in history has been as carefully studied or foretold as China’s. I also
hope that the international system is better at understanding and dealing
with the rise of China then it has been in previous such cases in history. If
CLOSING REMARKS 209
we think back over the last five centuries or so the international system
has a terrible record of actually dealing with the rise of new powers —
whether it was Britain in the 18
th
Century, the rise of Germany in late 19
th
or
early 20
th
century, the rise of Japan in 1920’s and 30’s, and the rise and fall
of the Soviet Union. There have also been rises foretold, which have never
happened such as Japan in the nineties for instance.
But my own hope, given the quality of discussion here is that this time
the international system may have a better chance of understanding and
dealing with this particular rise than it did in the past. The reason is simple.
It is because the rise of China is unlike any of the other cases I mentioned
from the past. Unlike each of those cases, the rise of China is occurring
when China is intimately linked to the existing power structure. She is
economically bound to the powers that she may replace. Her prosperity,
and therefore, regime stability in China itself, seem directly linked through
global production chains to the rest of the international system and to other
powers. So, China might have developed military capabilities which many
of you have to consider professionally through your work. I think the political
question must be whether the pattern of China’s development and whether
events like global economic crisis have de-linked China sufficiently from
the rest of the international system and from the West in particular, to
open new strategic and political options for her? I am not sure. This is still
an open question and I think you heard different answers in the course of
the last day and a half from different speakers. (For instance, look at intra-
Asian trade where quantity seems to have become quality. Something like
31 per cent of our trade in Asia was intra Asian in 1990, and now we are
almost over 50 per cent. The global economic crisis might actually push
us over that.)
Secondly, it seems to me that the rise of China is in a sense masking
the simultaneous rise of several other powers – South Korea, India,
Indonesia to name a few. It is occurring in a very crowded strategic
environment, where existing powers like the USA, Japan, Russia regard
210 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
themselves as Asian powers. We are, therefore, dealing with the rise of
Asia but not in the manner in which the West and Europe rose historically.
In effect we use the term, the rise of China, as short hand for a much more
complex phenomenon which still lacks a name. The fact is that the
phenomenon is so much more complex that multiple shifts are occurring
at the same time. Theoretically, it should open up opportunities and options
for many more powers in the region as the whole system is opening up.
There should be more space, theoretically. But that is not what came out
of our discussion. This is why I say that we should look more closely at not
just the challenges and risks, which we did, but also at the opportunities,
at what actually has opened up and what we could be doing together with
other powers including China in this emerging situation?
The concentration on challenges rather than opportunities is partly
because the rise of China is taking place without any mediatory institutions
in place in Asia. Shifts in the balance of power are therefore leading to
internal balancing responses – to military build-ups to other things rather
than to the cooperative and coordinated kind of actions that you might
otherwise expect. Even the external balancing of coalition building that
Admiral Kaneda was talking about is not happening.
There is thus, a clear need for some kind of further discussion on the
sort of institution building which can provide assurances to all the powers
concerned about an increasingly uncertain future. There are two ways of
doing so. One is, of course, the Big Bang approach. Prime Minister Rudd
gave the clearest expression of that approach by suggesting that we try to
set up a pan-Asian institution with a long agenda of all the things we need
to do about our cooperative collective security, thus setting up a large
regional security architecture. The other way is to begin with practical
cooperation; of which anti-piracy operations off the Horn of Africa is a good
example, which started practically without any institution in place at all.
The institutions developed out of what we were doing. Start small, start
with the known, start with the practical, and then build on successful
CLOSING REMARKS 211
experience. I have suggested elsewhere that one area where a beginning
could be made is cooperation in maritime security, from Suez through to
the western Pacific. Our own preference has always been for an open
security architecture and the sort of multi-polarity that China too advocates
in global contexts.
There is space for India and China to grow and manage our relationship
successfully, if we both wish it. The question is really that we have a situation
where the Asian balance is opening out and we are trying to find a new
equilibrium. There are many volunteers for the role of balancer. The US is
the first one to put their hand up, but everyone would be happy to be a
balancer because everybody else then has to do the hard work. Between
India and China, we ourselves have had a bilateral ‘modus vivendi’ in place
since 1988. But like all such ‘modus vivendis’, it needs to be re-worked
periodically, in the light of changes, in India, in China, in the balance around
us and in the situation in which we find ourselves.
For us in India, the larger issue is whether India and China can work
together to help to manage the complicated regional security environment
in Asia. This includes several aspects. One is whether China can deal with
partners as equals or whether her hierarchical strategic culture precludes
this. Another is whether China and the other rising Asian powers are willing
to and capable of providing public goods in terms of security, growth and
stability that the continued development of China, India and the region
require. China has proved that she can do the economics. Can she also
do the politics that come with power? The case in point is whether China
can and will help to preserve security in the global commons.
There are many other issues which came up in the course of this
discussion. Strategic stability was one which we came close to, but without
an answer. But, then like all good seminars, it has left us with more topics
for several more seminars and for all of us to meet again.
So, let me congratulate you, General PK Singh and all of you in the
212 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009
USI, and all the participants who made this a very successful and productive
National Security Seminar. I am sure that the seeds you planted here today
will bear fruit in the future.

RISING CHINA
OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE
BASED ON PROCEEDINGS OF NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 HELD AT USI, NEW DELHI ON 25-26 NOV 2009

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Booz Allen Hamilton. AVSM.AVSM (Retd) 31 33 Second Paper Third Paper Fourth Paper Prof Zhang Guihong. 99 Shri Jayadeva Ranade.CONTENTS Welcome Remarks Lieutenant General PK Singh.UYSM. IPS (Retd) 107 115 . PVSM.AVSM (Retd) Shri Mohan Guruswamy Ms Bethany Danyluk. University of Philippines.VM (Retd) 7 Keynote Address Participants First Session Chairman First Paper 9 25 Rise of China Shri MK Rasgotra. Japan 45 63 Discussion Second Session Chairman First Paper Second Paper China’s Employment of Soft Power Vice Adm KK Nayyar. Okazaki Institute . Fudan University.AVSM (Retd) Air Commodore Jasjit Singh. PVSM.VrC. JNU Lt Gen (Army) Masahiro Kunimi (Retd). IFS (Retd) Lieutenant General V R Raghavan. PVSM. USA 67 77 81 89 Third Paper Fourth Paper Discussion Prof Aileen Baviera. China 39 Prof Srikant Kondapalli.

Jamia Milia University 171 Chairman First Paper Second Paper 173 179 181 Third Paper 187 Fourth Paper 191 Discussion Closing Remarks Shri Shiv Shankar Menon. USDoD Mr Yung Sheng Chao. Korean Institute for Defence Analyses Professor Sujit Dutta. Japan Professor Jaeho Hwang. Nuclear. Power Projection and Regional Power Rear Adm KR Menon (Retd) Prof Han Hua . Prospect Foundation. SIS Peking University Prof Michael Pillsbury.Third Session Strategic Capability : Space. Taipei. IFS 199 207 . Lt Gen (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd). Japan Colonel Subodh Kumar 123 Chairman First Paper 127 Second Paper 131 Third Paper 137 Fourth Paper 143 Fifth Paper Discussion Fourth Session 147 165 Regional Implications of China’s Rise : Building an enduring power equation in Asia Shri K Raghunath. IFS (Retd) Prof Han Hua . Consultant. Okazaki Institute. Okazaki Institute. SIS Peking University Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda (Retd) .

NEW DELHI ON 25-26 NOVEMBER 2009 . USI PROCEEDINGS OF National Security Seminar 2009 HELD AT USI.S-54 RISING CHINA OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE Edited By Maj Gen P J S Sandhu (Retd) Deputy Director and Editor.

.

So. Based on China’s economic success.Welcome Remarks Lieutenant General PK Singh. 138 years ago! We discussed ‘China’ for the first time in 1889 and continue to do so even today. members of the United Service Institution of India (USI). the PLA has steadily promoted its modernisation programmes and this improved military capability is changing the military balance in the region. ladies and gentlemen. It was founded in Simla in 1870. It has achieved tremendous progress in its economic development and has carved a place for itself as a leader in economic field. distinguished panelists. China is a rising power. Director. It is an autonomous and financially self supporting Institution with over 12. but what is not clear is – How China will use this growing power and influence in Asia and the World? Some of the questions that we thought needed answers were:(a) What are the goals of China’s Security policies? . This Institution organised its first Lecture Seminar on 30th January 1871 – yes. PVSM.600 members. The increase in China’s Comprehensive National Power (CNP) is evident. AVSM (Retd). It is my privilege and honour to welcome you to this year’s National Security Seminar on ‘Rising China – An Opportunity or Strategic Challenge’. excellencies. there are some who are here in USI for the first time. We at the USI have been looking at issues of interest to our members ever since we were founded. let me very briefly say something about the USI. Amongst the honoured guests. USI of India Air Commodore Jasjit Singh. members of the media.

I am grateful to Air Commodore Jasjit Singh. we will deliberate on these and many other issues. where he had an equally distinguished innings serving as its Director for 16 years. Japan and the Cross Straits Prospect Foundation. I would also like to welcome the delegations from Okazaki Institute. Director Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS) who has very graciously agreed to deliver the Keynote Address. Taiwan and of course India. He moved to Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA). AVSM. I would like to specially welcome the participants from China. VrC. He was the Convenor of the Task Force to set up the National Security Council. He was awarded the Vir Chakra in 1971 Indo-Pak War. Air Commodore Jasjit Singh joined the Indian Air Force in 1954 as a fighter pilot and had a chequered career. I must also extend a hearty welcome to the delegation from the Netherland’s Advanced Defence Course led by Lieutenant General Diepenbrugge who have taken time off from their busy schedule to participate in this Seminar. VM (Retd). He was later the Director of Operations at the IAF Headquarters. Philippines. military and soft power? (c) Will China be a status quo power or a revisionist power? (d) How can you build an enduring power equation in Asia? Over the next two days.8 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (b) How will China exercise its growing economic. Japan. . Taiwan who are here to also participate in our bilateral dialogues. South Korea. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the President of India for outstanding service to the Nation in the field of defence and National security. It is my privilege and honour to invite Air Commodore Jasjit Singh to now deliver the Keynote Address. political. the USA.

the procedure at that time was that you could select two books from the catalogue and request USI to send them. When. an outstanding officer and a long time Director of USI. and I started another think tank which has now completed 8 years. USI.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 9 Keynote Address Air Commodore Jasjit Singh. I could actively work with an outstanding human being. VM (Retd) Good morning ladies and gentlemen. I spent first five years of my Air Force service career at an airfield which is in the boon docks. and as it happens at home. Colonel Pyara Lal. Newspapers used to come a day late. AVSM. I hope . So. I think some people may have forgotten to return books. where you could shoot panthers on the airfield but you could not find a book to read. VrC. in IDSA. So. you posted them back at your cost to USI. in a place called Kalaikonda. If I do make any mistakes in this Keynote address. Therefore. Lieutenant General PK Singh for having asked me to share my views at such an important Seminar at USI. which actually had been started by USI long time ago so that officers deployed in remote areas would have access to military related literature and everything that goes with it. to me it is homecoming. At that time a USI library catalogue was published and sent to us. I came to the Indian Air Force Headquarters for the first time in 1968. that process was stopped. I must state this publicly that while I served with one think tank for pretty long time. but my loyalties go to USI. we were simply made the members of USI. When we were Commissioned. I will give you a simple reason for this. After you had finished reading. You could keep them for one month. I am indeed grateful to the Director. you can make many mistakes.

When the Soviet Union collapsed and the American pressures built up all round. Then. it would read ‘Opportunity and Strategic Challenge’. amounting to almost essential vulnerability in the Chinese mind to say that the next turn for destabilisation of a country from outside sources. I think there was an uncertainty.between IDSA. when actually China was nervous. Are we looking at this year. at that time they welcomed much closer relationship with India. about the question.an Opportunity or Strategic Challenge?’. I looked at the title. and National Defence University (NDU). But you will still have one constant answer and that is. I think we might be just a little closer to understanding what is going on. Therefore. somewhere in the West mostly. as also specifically India. chronologically it starts with Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s visit in 1988. There is a lot of wishful thinking. and what is going to happen in the future that would affect rest of the World. The choice whether this ‘or’ will change to ‘and’. but by 1987 in fact. that added to their uncertainties creating a sense of weakness and vulnerability. Why I say this is because in my previous incarnation I used to go to China with strong contacts with think tanks in China . I also don’t believe that China’s rise to power is going to be disrupted in any way. If we change that word ‘or’ into ‘and’. would be that of China.10 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 you will understand that it is all because of my treating this more as an informal process. actually depends on what time horizon you wish to look at. I heard much more of this in early 1990’s. and Chinese Strategic Institute for Research (CSIR). the Chinese literature was starting to talk about: Indian Armed Forces are highly professional – there is lot to learn from them. that something in China will implode because it has now additional internal problems. India. After 1989. because I tend to look at things from an Indian perspective. One wishes that one could look at it from another angle also. . Although. ‘Rising China . led by the USA. ‘China is a rising power’. That is before the Tiananmen square incident. next five years or the next twenty years or the next fifty years? Your answers may well be different.

except through reverse engineering – but they just could not do it. Lot of people will talk about this as a Middle Kingdom syndrome. Some of it. is it an opportunity or a strategic challenge?’ The answer will depend mainly on how China conducts itself in the future. I want to say first what I should be saying at the end. this perception had to be put aside because with the collapse of the Soviet Union came a tremendous amount of economic crisis. they said that they were improving relations with China. Perhaps. Coming back to the theme of this Seminar. like . when 80 per cent of our weapons were ex-Soviet design base. Let me begin by answering the question. That allowed what was to follow. I at least got the impression that the Chinese. We don’t want to create a threat for ourselves for the future. In late 1980’s. right or wrong. Here comes the first difference of approach and method. inspite of a much closer relationship with the Soviet Union in those days. we do have an understanding. and also helping in upgrading the industries. and that could change as time goes by. Chinese perceptions of what is happening in the world and their world view. as the Gorbachev’s policies got going. one major item for which they had no answer upto that time was: How to modernise the Chinese military? Because everything was based on the original Soviet designs. there was no way they could do it. twice or thrice a year. and the Chinese coming here to IDSA. ‘Rising China. India simply ignored that strategic opportunity. It was asked of the Soviets. Now. designer was brought into India. However. Not one Soviet technologist. a little bit of Sun Tzu will influence and a little bit of something else will also influence. However. this issue of the 5th generation fighter aircraft design jointly is a much later happening and I don’t know the future of that. a little bit of that will influence.‘No’. And Soviets were not willing to help them. ‘Are you going to upgrade their Defence industry?’ The answer used to be a categorical . having been to China for 13 years regularly.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 11 As time went by and once we got rapid access to Soviet military design base. engineer.

If you take a more detailed look. just two countries manufactured approximately 60 per cent of the world’s manufacturing output. were deindustrialised.6 per cent of the global manufacturing output. have an old civilization. In that process. then you say. as the Chinese say. So many things are deeply rooted in that civilization. as you today calculate. But in other terms. became the cause of many things – not only India becoming a colony. the ‘Industrial Revolution’ which actually started in England and then spread to Europe and North America. Then. till by 1950. what they do generally. regardless of the political system in many other cases. global power shift from the West to the East is taking place essentially because of the rise of China and India.1 per . It has now moved upto close to 2 per cent. and I think all the data tells us that. It is only a ‘return’ of power to the East. like ours. not that far ahead. All that came out of the Industrial Revolution. yes. It is not something new that is happening except that those who do not read history may not know it. What does that history tell us? Today serious literature. At the beginning of the 18th Century. and China being badgered and humiliated. ‘industrialisation’ in the West. will not be too far away from the basic civilizational values that they have. there is a global power shift going on from the West to the East. in this context. India was exporting just 0. So. India and China. where both just keep coming down roughly parallel to each other. China is well ahead of India in that process. These two countries also contained 62 per cent of the World’s total income or GDP. compared to what I am going to say in terms of historical experience. both. In fact.12 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 us. I wish I could show you my favourite graph. what is the landscape? First. second was India at 24 per cent. The Chinese had come down to 2. Which were these two countries? Number one was China which accounted for 33 per cent. by these powers. where even a small power like Belgium had a huge empire in Africa. the older method of economic productivity was destroyed.

and which way it is going in this landscape? Where does China fit in and how will China deal with that international system? One view is that the World is becoming multi-polar. like manufacturing etc. A large number of centres of power. Whatever the World was. or not lose sleep over it. I could never understand that fully. India and China remained outside it. then one conclusion is that Indians need not bother too much about China. a power and international relationships. it is ahead of us today – it will remain ahead of us. Many Indians talk about multi-polarity because we don’t like the word uni polar. I do not lose sleep that China is ahead of us. and 148 outside it. I am not too sure whether multi-polarity is the right term. if we look into the future. from that point of time. It was always ahead of us in some areas. all declassified documents tell us that the leadership was privately almost abusive to each other. By the late 1950’s. In terms of income and economic capability. the two graphs are again rising. we want to know what the World is today. What then is the right term that we would like to see in the future? I think the reality today is still that the world is poly centric. it was very clear that they were no longer working together. but in a globalised . Now. We were told that the world was bipolar during or when the Cold War was on. this is inevitable and this is not just the National Informatics Centre (NIC) report. Russia. Bi-polar is finished. If that is so. The second is. France and some of the others. some other countries’ graphs are coming down. Inevitably. This is the reality. So. inspite of the early years of the Soviet-China military alliance. ‘What sort of international system are we seeing that is evolving or is there?’ We learnt a lot. This is something that you could look into upto 20 years ago. It is not the end of everything when you consider a nation. There are countries who want the world to become multi-polar.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 13 cent and moved upto 6 per cent of the global output. some bigger some smaller. Thirty eight countries on one side and thirteen countries on the other side. In fact. The leading countries that are seeking multi-polarity are China. do not make the World bi-polar.

but a uni-polar system of the Euro-Atlantic countries. But you see here a different type of an international model that will emerge. But the difference is that when China talks about multi-polarity. Perfectly good buildings on the Main Street of Beijing were pulled down and re-built so that now they look completely modern. There was a time when I took 2½ hrs drive to reach from Beijing to the Great Wall. China’s belief at the moment is that the US policies are trying to contain it. We all tend to look at this economic growth and infrastructure and such things that go on. That is yet to percolate down into the rural areas. What is happening specifically to China itself. I believe that China is trying to undermine the US power so that its own rise in international system is facilitated. certainly not the type that existed before. social and other connections with each other. not a threat. stands today. will depend on ‘major powers’ who will have that influence and the ‘thinkers’ who will think about this in a greater or lesser degree. I wonder that how much of that infra structure that one saw. with China at the head. with whom they must cooperate. you are not going to see the return of a Cold War. What emerges. because of the type of infrastructure that is coming up now. In that undermining of the United States. So.14 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 world what you see is strictly speaking a poly centric world. what comes out of many writings and statements is in fact that multi-polarity at the global level will be based on uni-polar Asia. Not just in Beijing but also in the outlying cities. . The US believes that China is a future problem area. I will give you two examples a little later. not a uni-polar World. You have here. it gets very uncomfortable and wants to do lots of things with those countries with whom the US seeks better relationship. it took me just 45 minutes to get to the same place. Because from that perspective only it can match up to the United States which still runs. I am not talking about the political system. not very complex but essentially two clear set of countries. not blocs – because they have an intense economic. yet. I will leave that out for the time being because that itself has strong impact on many things. is important. Just seven years later.

The Chinese weapons are now high technology. the Chinese just step back a little. so Pakistan now also gets high technology weapons. The Chinese maintain a steady constant relationship at a little odd level. Pakistan in the last 50 years has been the ‘Frontline’ state three times.e. then is Central Asia. And in the process. they have been so. They thought that they had actually now assimilated and controlled the old periphery. We in India tend to believe that the Chinese are doing this to raise a counter to India. you will have things changing and you get new opportunities. at different times.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 15 But it did ‘acquire’. The reasons were very clear. but substantive. it has been under ‘severe sanctions’. they said alright. after asking a question to say. and wait it out. from 1950’s in fact. The reason is to give Pakistan a degree of autonomy from the US influence. ‘Are you serious about fighting?’ When they were told yes. Therefore. But I think that is not the major reason as to why China started to support Pakistan. with their traditional ability. With every change of the President. It ‘acquired’ the East Coast. Pakistan from the very beginning. The area to the east of the Great Wall started to become prosperous and affluent in the beginning. and therefore they stepped out ahead of that. nuclear material and missiles – eighty per cent of weapons of Pakistan military are of Chinese origin. to the extent of giving nuclear weapons. The other three times. and therefore Pakistan is a part of that. China started to invest a lot more into the ‘periphery’ at that time which is still within the Chinese territorial boundary i. While Obama said Af-Pak. which now became part of the new core. China when it agreed in 1965 to provide weapons. Tibet and Xingjian. as it started to modernise particularly. I don’t think that is really true. for China it is Pak-Af. in . And. You know very well that the US history runs on a four year cycle. they will tell you that China is an all weather friend. Ahead of that. when the influence is increased. I would say. Although. So that is the fluctuating type of relationship that the United States has with others. has been a strong one. I am not saying that it is not part of the process. If you ask the Pakistanis. perhaps they may have had some such thought about containment of India.

have a major bearing on how China’s rise is going to be. therefore. if the periphery includes our neighbourhood like Bangladesh. one view is that Sandhurst qualified Field Marshal had not particularly liked the idea of going back to the hills and fighting a guerilla warfare for an endless period of time. Not only in . And. because there was nothing internal. The periphery as I mentioned has been shifting further and further. which goes back to perhaps the earlier part of the 20th Century definitely. really speaking in this case. The US relationships. Is it likely to be an opportunity or a challenge? It does not mean that countries like India should not have a closer relationship with the US. despite his many achievements. From that perspective. go back into the hills. during the 1965 war to Beijing. to be the leader. which could add to that power or subtract from that power. that becomes then the rational method of the Chinese looking at the World. that as long as we understand that the Chinese ‘grand strategy’ is focused on the United States as a point of reference. therefore. Their own model of Mao’s people’s war is what was advocated. Myanmar – Pakistan of course is a de-facto ally. if that was not possible. the US policies and its relationship with other countries. But to be conscious of the fact. But that is what it is. with a request that China should step up its pressure on India and the border. This is an old dream of the Chinese.16 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 that case we will help. and that upset Mao Tse Tung extremely. that periphery has now gone much further. the US policies. after PRC came into being to be the leader of the World. But certainly. if you are losing on the plains. But when Ayub Khan flew down on a secret mission on 19th September. So. he developed a slight amount of personal dislike for the Indian Prime Minister who had charisma and everything else. at that time in 1950’s of the Afro Asian world. That is where India was the competitor. Therefore. Mao could not understand why Nehru got so much attention. if possible. the Chinese actually told them that at the highest level that ‘you must keep fighting’. and also their own rise. In fact China could not rise upto it. Of course.

In last two decades we have seen what was periphery – incorporated fully into China. It may not even know when it starts. Why? Going back to the ancient Turkey linkages – not Islamic linkages incidentally. i. Many of them want to go back. Tibet and Xingjian.e. when you get these out of the way and see what the reality is. I told the State Secretary of China. they could not find a foothold. this is a problem that is going to take a long time to solve. In 1991. the call came from Turkey that legal rights must be maintained. which the Chinese have opposed and stopped. in our discussion.000 (Tibetan) refugees can go back. why don’t you sit in the NonAligned movement?” He said. The Chinese look at it only from their perspective.” So we have a choice on siding on a specific issue rather than anything else. at least those who want to go back. “Since you pursue an independent policy. which the Government of India may not be able to control. at least my view is. While it remains within the boundaries of China’s territories. who are virtually in their second generation. not changed. but also in the Non Aligned movement. could be a potential flash point in future. a little more than our own side of the perspective. of the type as we saw last year. There is one other point I want to say about the word ‘strategic challenge’ before I get to the end of it. They are the people who belong to Tibet. There was an agreement between India and China in 1954. This is a term that I used the day I became .RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 17 Afro Asian thing. and this year indicate that it is not so. Whereas these refugees. I think. by and large also tend to look at it from other side’s perspective. We find that even in Xingjian. and I have talked to my Chinese friends again and again over the last 18 years: ‘Kindly create conditions that these 1. we need to think over this very carefully because. Islamic linkage in Xingjian is actually from Pakistan. The only time that they got a little annoyed with Pakistan was on that issue. This is likely to be one of the fault lines between China and India. But. or it was believed that it was fully incorporated and assimilated. that culture etc would be promoted. I certainly did not expect that there would be disturbances in Tibet. Indians.80. Events of the last year. “we are thinking of joining as an observer.

“The new Director IDSA says. China is a new threat. Whichever ones or sources you look today. the press next morning said. Well. we think that you are a threat. China is India’s strategic challenge.” Please understand that China is not a threat. China is a potential challenge. “I don’t think. was last used in 1923. that we are planning to fight a local border war. all that we have to do is to defend ourselves. This is the official Chinese White Paper on Defence. For example. Now that China’s military is growing in a massive way. 96 per cent of their weapons. People talk about power projection.” I find a great difference between a ‘challenge’ and a ‘threat’. this is so. including nuclear weapons and missiles. categorically says very officially and clearly. holding forth to say that India says that. I had a Senior Colonel of the PLA in a conference in 1999 in Sweden. The term. That power projection is still being limited to the sea. which is very logical and that we are going to win that local border war with command of the ‘sea’ and command of the ‘air’ and the use of the ‘strategic forces’. So. IDSA. it happened to be a day. when the Press was present and I did say. finally I had to tell him with the Swedish Prime Minister sitting in the Chair. The army will be reduced and streamlined basically for defence. we are not talking of scholar’s . how far the Chinese military system will be able to absorb that technology and use it is still a question mark. there is no dearth of it. And 22 years later. in line with their expectations from the new military technologies. people are forgetting that once you have this immense infusion of high technology into a system. have no relevance for a country which is far away. they are lying” and all such things. That officer was full of ‘josh’. You are not a threat because we will make sure that. I am willing to repeat that. where in any case they claim many islands. Unfortunately. to a certain distance. ‘command of the air’. Even the United States does not use that sort of language today. But in terms of systems. “China is India’s long term strategic challenge”. you don’t become a threat. unlike 1962. China’s White Paper of 19 December 2004.18 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Director. I will put another 5 to 10 years. It’s not so much power projection but a change in doctrine and changing strategy. “China is a threat.

No modern countries are talking of this. We have the first Airborne Early Warning System (AWAC). and one of them has already been transferred to Pakistan. So. Therefore.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 19 point of view or interpretations. in about 1012 years from today. China certainly runs at ‘Number two’ power in the World. that is the kind of scale that we are talking about. Only three countries like the USA. which is tending to shift more and more reliance on ‘Space’. You cannot modernise a military unless you have a strong enough economy. which have an anti Satellite capability. biggest military spender. As far as new things are concerned. ‘Command of the Sea’ again is something that people like Mahan and people like Gorshkov had talked of. it is the biggest military. they have already improved. everything else is linked in a more continuous manner. India one day. but on the ground. China today has 400. and now has the most recent technology into it. but their nuclear arsenal has not changed basically in the last 30 years. But. will go on to have 450 in the next two years. demonstrate it. In Asia. in the air we will go on the offensive and defensive. will have 210 Sukhoi 30’s. No country can stand the type of military pressure that the United States is capable of exercising. This is the way we are going to keep limited the local border war. What has changed is the ability to create and shoot down Satellites in the air. How many countries will be able to withstand this type of military pressure. Let us leave the United States out. To give a very simple example. I don’t even have to interpret this. This is one Country which is talking of this. . Military systems do not come free anymore. This was interpreted wrongly in my view. the Israelis delivered to us a few months ago – they have five of them already in use. They are very clear on this issue. the military modernisation appeared at ‘Number Four’. and I kept arguing at that time that this is not the ‘sequence’. There used to be some confusion amongst the scholars earlier because when the original form of modernisation was written. Russia and China. One could go on but I do not want to talk about their military capability. These are just four items. economically and otherwise and now as a military power. It will have vast impact on the nature of future war. even by the superpower.

17. there was enormous impact on the political psychological side and also on the military side. you can target a very specific area. They did not get a single mobile launcher – not even one.20 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 They have also gone into what Blue Ribbons Commissioner of the US had actually suggested to the American President way back in 1988. What was agreed upon between China and India was that we would try and solve the border issues but meanwhile lets demarcate the Line of Actual Control (LAC). than mere kinetic. It was strange. Because. So the signals are very clear. it is 2009 – there is very little movement. How do I see it? That’s roughly my ending point.000 combat sorties is a fair amount of effort with the highest capable aircraft that they had. At that time. Therefore. Let’s just talk of China-India. Now from 1993. About a thousand of such missiles are deployed on to Taiwan. there comes a question. The impact of the conventional missiles is actually much more psychological and political. 16 per cent of those sorties were aimed at finding and hitting the ‘scuds’. They knocked off many fixed launching sites. one finds the Chinese statements and Chinese actions to be a lot more assertive than what they were earlier. we should be able to start thinking of using the ballistic missiles with conventional warheads. that with the accuracies that we are getting on our ballistic missiles.17. 16 per cent of 1. The largest quantum of air effort was spent in that war was on ‘scuds’. They are not denying them. Iraq fired 87 of them with questionable results. but they are not moving for any action on those. the first half of 1990’s. because normally Blue Ribbon Commissions have to be implemented. But now they are clearly very assertive towards India. but the Chinese have learnt their lesson. Not much attention was paid to this Commission by the United States. Although with higher accuracy. The neighbours better look out. they were very nervous. About 15000 missiles have been fired in wars since 1943 and everytime they were used. We can’t demarcate the LAC because the Chinese are not very . they went into two agreements – 1993 and 1996. think what you want to do about it.000 combat sorties during that War. The United States and its allies flew about 1. In the last few years. We talk a great deal about 1991 Gulf War.

The more we talk about solving the border dispute. And in next 20 years. India is still increasing its population although not at the same rate at what we were earlier. IDSA. the Chinese will go down a little bit but they have a large population. Where did it come from? If they wanted . First is the question.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 21 keen on it. but certainly not if we try. saying that people ask me this question as Director. India meant much at that time. Why don’t you get on with this? Are we not moving sufficiently or are the Chinese not serious about it? His answer to me was. You signed the Agreement because at that time you wanted to appear friendly with India and. If I read my history right. We never heard Tawang being part of the problem in the last 45 or 50 years. So. we can manage.” I asked. the Japanese is going down rapidly. We are both old civilizations. All I would say is that. nor any incentive to demarcate the LAC. But are you waiting for a Government that will last 20 years before you actually demarcate the LAC. if he would like to share the reason with me? He said. the SinoSoviet-Russian border problems have existed for 170 odd years. I don’t see any incentive for China to settle the boundary question. The trouble in your Country is that your Government keeps changing too fast. therefore. You are not going to get a solution on the boundary and the territorial question any time soon. it’s going to take a long time. even when you signed the Agreement. I had pressed him for the answer. like us. We were under sanctions from the United States. let us wait for 100 years. India is ‘Number three’ country in the World today. That makes it a problem. “Mr Singh. ‘Why can’t we demarcate the Line of Actual Control?’ It is difficult on the Himalayas. which I keep asking. the Russian and European population is going to go down completely. I have two propositions here. “Yes.” I said. we are actually giving a leverage to Beijing to make some little effort to raise the level a little bit. and experts are sitting here from both sides from China and India. This is a problem that is only 60 years old. You knew this. I see no evidence. A wonderful answer was given for the first time by a very senior person in the Government in Beijing. certainly it changes every 5 years by and large. so we looked like an obvious ‘Number two’ to the leader.

and then 2005. After which. under these circumstances are fairly clear. That again doesn’t mean neutrality either. Pakistan is in a state of instability. in 1938. China sees a problem and therefore. you can go back to 2003. a declining society in Pakistan next door – both close to the United States from a totally different perspective. they could have stopped just at Tawang. strategic autonomy. Part of that rise in pressure has been because this is the period when India-US relations have actually improved. It is not the product of the Cold War. There is a word that I feel has been grossly understood – ‘Non Alignment’. we hope!! So here is a stable rising India. My understanding of history is that this term was accepted by the Indian political leadership.22 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Tawang in 1962. But that is a word that explains what the best option for India ought to be. not the Muslim League. Therefore. In both cases. but in working with it. while criticising Mc Mahon Line. and I hope I am wrong. which would serve the interest of everybody. options for India. So. the United States on one side and China on the other side. Three or four books have been published by the Chinese on the War. and a declining economy. that this recent assertiveness ties up chronologically at least with a fact that India-US relations have come much closer. Under these conditions. the second problem is that I have been trying to re-look at the 1962 War. I hope somebody can help us in understanding what is written there. Because ‘Non Alignment’ is different from ‘Non Aligned Movement’. So . at least for the Congress. actually there has been additional pressures from the Chinese side. There are also pressures on India and many other countries because the US influence and control in Pakistan is increasing. In fact. not in opposition to it. Unfortunately. while the US is there for a variety of reasons. raising strategic partnership. needs to do something. We can say. But India is also placed in a unique position to be able to deal with China’s rise. rather than carrying onto Mc Mahon Line. We can use any other word you like. especially if the nuclear weapons can be kept under control by somebody –Pakistan Army.

RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 23 there is an area where we can have sufficient cooperation. So why do we need to go on and on. therefore. Under the circumstances. the Chinese are complaining about it. “This is going to take a long time. then minor concessions given here and there will not improve things.” That’s that. you have ‘insurance’ partly for that purpose. Number one. till the last time I went there in 2002. For which the answer lies in the demarcation of LAC. and they plan to build more railway lines. We have the Chief of the General Staff. It is great for a developing country that only 20 years earlier. They work on National interest. So. While we address our own specific challenge. wonderful people. What we need is that we need to understand this much more. ‘India should seek to have a policy of cooperation with China. I think we should stop even this bilateral dialogue on the borders. but at the same time. they were in the middle of . I think we are capable of doing that. PLA saying in 1998. that we are not watching and what are the implications of those things? Our aim should be. To encapsulate that into just two words. Because if it is non productive. I have lots and lots of friends there but governments don’t run on simple personal friendships. to avoid any potential conflict or clashes with China. cooperate but ‘insure’? How does that ‘insurance’ come in? You have a credible deterrent available. China’s rise is to be welcomed and strategic challenge has to be understood. which is in force. which is Comprehensive National Development which no elected government can ignore. That will make things worse in the long term. I certainly take great pleasure in China’s rise because its visible and I have seen it happening from end 1989. That doesn’t mean that we would be in conflict. China is a marvelous country. They expect that while they are building these beautiful railway lines all the way. not by ‘giving in’ anything. before they started modernisation. Our National interest and values are different. The infra structure being improved in the Himalayas. You can even forget about it for a long time. but to maintain the ‘status quo’ on the frontiers.

In early 1970’s there was a book. ‘Hold on. you will certainly come up to Third or Fourth Century AD. I would like to end by saying one more thing. Open a book of History of China at the halfway point and you will get to the Third Century BC. you may be lucky if you can open it at the Civil War. .’ Thank you everybody.24 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 the cultural revolution and what it caused. The thesis propounded in the book is: Because the US had just opened upto China at that time in 1971-72. At the same time. China and the Ruins of Washington’. this scholar was trying to caution the Americans to say. which I picked up because its title caught my eye: ‘India. Now on the lighter side. If you open a book on the US history. Open a book on Indian history. China must recognise that there are other civilizations too.

Shri MK Rasgotra. AVSM.AVSM (Retd) had a distinguished career in the Indian Army and retired as Director General of Military Operations. IFS (Retd) was a Member of the Punjab Education Service till September 1949. Air Commodore Jasjit Singh. when he entered Indian Foreign Service. He was member of the UN Disarmament Advisory Board from 1983-1990. He assumed charge as the Director of the United Service Institution of India. New Delhi. before being deputed to the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses. he was honoured with Padma Bhushan in 2002. AVSM (Retd) was commissioned into 2 Field Regiment (SP) Artillery on 16 December 1967. His tenure as Foreign Secretary from 1982 to 1985 was marked by a renewal of Indo-American relations. he currently heads Centre for Air Power Studies. Lieutenant General VR Raghavan.UYSM. In recognition of his long service to the Nation. New Delhi on 1 January 2009. where he was Director from 1987 to 2001. PVSM. sustained negotiations with Pakistan and a tentative opening to China. His combat experience included operations in wars with Pakistan and China. He joined . He participated in 1971 Indo-Pak War and was the Deputy Director General MI (Foreign Division) during Operation Vijay. He retired as General Officer Commanding-in-Chief South Western Command on 31 August 2008. He served as the Director of Operations of the Indian Air Force.VM (Retd) joined the Indian Air Force in 1954 and retired in 1988.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 25 PARTICIPANTS Lieutenant General PK Singh. Founder Director of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies.VrC.PVSM. and in counter-insurgency campaigns. New Delhi.

Japan. New Delhi for 12 years. Beijing from 1996-98. Ministry of Defence from January 1997 to December 1999. PVSM. Taipei in 2004 and a Visiting Fellow at China Contemporary International Relations. Presently. His major areas of research are Sino-US-Indian relations. International Organisations and Asia-Pacific security. United Nations Association of China and Vice President of Association of Asian Scholars in China. Professor Srikant Kondapalli. Centre for Security Analyses and has been appointed Adviser of the newly constituted International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament. He was the First Director General of Cabinet Satellite Intelligence Centre. Beijing in May 2007. South Africa. University of Stellenbosch. He learnt Chinese language at Beijing language and Culture University and was a post-Doctoral Visiting Fellow at People’s University. China-India Friendship Association. he is President. He is a Council member of China’s Association of South Asian Studies. He served as the First Director General of Defence Intelligence Headquarters. He is also an Honorary Fellow at Institute of Chinese Studies. Cabinet Office from April 2001 to March 2005. Professor Zhang Guihong is the Executive Director of the Centre for South Asian Studies and the Centre for UN Studies at the Institute of International Studies of Fudan University. Delhi and Research Associate at the Centre for Chinese Studies.AVSM (Retd) is a former Vice Chief of the Indian Navy. Vice Admiral KK Nayyar. Lieutenant General (Army) Masahiro Kunimi (Retd) is the Special Adviser Ocean Policy Research Foundation in Tokyo. He was also a Visiting Professor at National Chergchi University. JNU is an Associate Professor in Chinese Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University.26 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 the Delhi Policy Group as the founding Director. He commanded both the Western and Eastern Fleets . He served at Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses.

New Delhi. he is a Member of the National Security Advisory Board. Harvard University. prior to retirement . Shri Jayadeva Ranade (Retd) is a former Additional Secretary. Professor Aileen Baviera is currently Professor of Asian Studies at the Asian Centre. Southern Naval Command. Philippines. New Delhi. Government of India (1998-99) holding the rank of Secretary on economic and financial issues. Ms Bethany Danyluk is an Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton. an independent think tank focussed on policy analysis. He is a seasoned China analyst with over 25 years experience in the field. Shri Mohan Guruswamy has wide ranging professional experience of 30 years. She is a member of the International Institute for Strategic Studies and Women in International Security. He also served as Flag Officer Commander-in-Chief. Boston and the Administrative Staff College of India. He is the Founder President of National Maritime Foundation and the Forum for Strategic and Security Studies. University of Philippines. Currently. a USA based strategy and consulting firm. he is the Chairman of Centre for Policy Alternatives. School of Government. Presently. His last foreign posting. She serves as a Managing Director of Finance for Young Professionals in Foreign Policy . Post retirement he has been closely associated with a number of think tanks dealing with international security issues. It includes teaching at the John F Kennedy. Hyderabad. She lectures regularly at the Foreign Service Institute and the National Defence College. Cabinet Secretariat. Government of India. His foreign assignments have included Beijing and Hong Kong. She was the Dean of the Asian Centre (September 2003-October 2009) and Head of the Centre for International Relations and Strategic Studies of the Philippine Foreign Institute (1993-1998) and Executive Director of Philippines-China Development Resource Centre (1998-91). He was Adviser to the Finance Minister.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 27 of the Indian Navy. Northeastern University Business School.

He studied bureaucratic politics with Roger Hilsman. China and Taiwan. He is presently a Distinguished Fellow with the Centre for Air Power Studies. that became the US policy during the Carter and Reagan administrations. 2004. He was also a Member of the Arun Singh Committee to restructure the National Defence set up in India and a Member of National Defence University Committee. Rear Admiral KR Menon (Retd) was a submarine specialist in the Indian Navy.The Reliance and Balance of the USA. and The Assessment of .28 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 in late 2008. Henry Kissinger and James Schlesinger. He retired in 1994 as the Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff (Operations). Professor Michael Pillsbury was educated at Standard University and Columbia University. She is an expert on International Arms Control and Disarmament Politics. Professor Han Hua is an Associated Professor and Director at the Centre for Arms Control and Disarmament at the School of International Studies at Peking University. his proposal at the RAND Corporation. 2003.USA. President Kennedy’s Intelligence Director at the State Department. China. Foreign Policies in South Asian Countries and US Politics and Foreign Policy in Asia Pacific region. During the Reagan administration he was the Assistant Under Secretary of Defence for Policy Planning and responsible for implementation of the programme of covert aid known as the Reagan Doctrine. that the USA should establish intelligence and military ties with China was publicly commended by Ronald Reagan. Peaceful-Rise Strategy in China. In 1975-76. His dissertations include International Security and Military Strategy. He is currently the Chairman of the Task Force on Net Assessment and Simulation in the National Security Council. He has participated in military CBM talks with neighbouring countries and was in the first military delegation to Pakistan. was as a Minister in the Indian Embassy in Washington. Later. Mr Yung Sheng Chao holds a bachelors degree from Fu Hsing Kang College and Masters in Oral communication from Kansas University and CSIS. 2005.

Maxwell AFB and the National Institute for Defence Studies. Mitsubishi Electric Company. He is a graduate of Defence Services Staff College. and later was India’s Ambassador to Russia in 2001. Wellington and Higher Defence Management Course. he became India’s Foreign Secretary in 1997. He is a graduate of the US Air Command and Staff College. He has participated in numerous seminars and conferences on National Security and Military Strategy of the USA and China. he is General Adviser with the Electronics Products and System and Group. he was Secretary (East) from 1995-1997. Lieutenant General (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd) was commissioned in the Japan Air Self Defence Force (JASDF) in March 1973. He commanded 142 Air Defence Regiment (SP). He specialised as an Air Weapons Controller. Presently. College of Defence Management. Colonel (now Brigadier) Subodh Kumar was commissioned into Army Air Defence in June 1982. in which capacity he was handling West Asia and dealing with Israel directly. IFS (Retd) joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1962. Air Development and Test Command. After having held many diplomatic and other important assignments during his long and distinguished career. He retired from JASDF in December 2007 as Commander. Japan Defence Agency. Presently. in the Ministry of External Affairs. He was Senior Research Fellow at USI of India and carried out research on issues related to militarisation of the outer Space. 2006. he is Commander 786 (I) AD Brigade. Secunderabad. Prior to becoming the Foreign Secretary. He was a Senior Fellow of Asia Centre and JF Kennedy School of Government of the Harvard. Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda (Retd) is a Director for the Okazaki Institute and a Trustee of Research Institute of Peace and Security.RISING CHINA : OPPORTUNITY OR STRATEGIC CHALLENGE 29 Military Strategy between Taiwan and China. He obtained Masters degree in National Strategy and Security Studies from the US National War College. Shri K Raghunath. and a Guest Professor of Faculty of Policy Management of .

Delhi. IFS (Retd) started his career with Indian Foreign Service in 1972.30 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Keio University. He is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Security and Strategy within the Korean Institute for Defence Analyses. Shri Shiv Shankar menon. He has been Indian Ambassador to China and Israel and High Commissioner to Sri Lanka. Professor Jaeho Hwang received his PhD in International Relations from the London School of Economics. He has been a member of the India-China Eminent Persons Group (2001-2005) and the National Security Council Task Force on China (200607). He served in the Japan Marine Self Defence Force from 1968 to 1999. He is a former Foreign Secretary of India. China Foreign Affairs and University of Melbourne. . Currently he is the National Security Adviser. Later. He is now a Visiting Research Fellow at Yonei University and Kyungnam University. Professor Sujit Dutta holds the Mahatma Gandhi Chair at the Nelson Mandela Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution. and was earlier a Visiting Research Fellow at University of Leeds. New Delhi. he was Senior Fellow and Head of the East Asian Studies at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA). Jamia Millia University. He has served with distinction in every portfolio held by him at the Ministry of External Affairs and in the Indian embassies in Beijing . Vienna and Tokyo. He was a Senior Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace. Till May 2009. Washington DC (1997-98). he was an Adviser to the Atomic Energy Commission.

Fudan University. Okazaki Institute . JNU Lt Gen (Army) Masahiro Kunimi (Retd). IFS (Retd) Lieutenant General V R Raghavan. China Prof Srikant Kondapalli.RISE OF CHINA FIRST SESSION Chairman First Paper Shri MK Rasgotra.AVSM (Retd) Second Paper Third Paper Fourth Paper Prof Zhang Guihong.UYSM. PVSM. Japan Discussion .

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By any of these criteria. the centre of gravity of global. in 19th Century. in some ways. Japan and India. China. political stability and military strength. form the basis of this change. In the 21st Century. One well known historian had said. AVSM (Retd) The rise to major power status of China has evoked great admiration. indisputably the United States. in every Century there seems to emerge a country with power. and this learned audience knows very well. highlights that 17th Century was led by France under Richelieu. Austria with Matternich and the idea of concert of nations. the generally agreed four criteria are: Population and territory. But it has also led to anxieties. China will rank as the top power in Asia and even outside Asia. If we go by the four criteria.RISE OF CHINA 33 Session I: First Paper Lieutenant General VR Raghavan. in Asia. created the idea of nation state and national interest. One sees. not only amongst major powers. in 20th Century. USYSM. as the Keynote address indicated this morning. China remains undoubtedly the most powerful. We go on to 18th Century and see the Great Britain and the whole notion of balance of power. resources (economic capability). and the economic power houses of East Asia. the will and intellectual moral impetus to shape the international system according to its own values”. geopolitical power is clearly shifting eastwards to Asia. PVSM. He. . for example. but also amongst its neighbours. which continues to influence international relations decisively and will continue to do so. which experts apply to determine what makes a great power. “By some natural law. a long historical process in the rise of China.

” At the last G 20 Summit. Tibet and Xingjian. even as it demonstrates its capacity to chart its own course. The . is a cause for economic discomfort. China’s unwillingness to regulate its currency to the global currencies. you know of Chinese policy positions on major issues. (e) Economic assistance and aid.34 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 The recent economic global meltdown quite clearly shows that China has been more capable than major powers in managing such crises. (d) Military and technology transfers of a sensitive nature. which have de-stabilised regions on its periphery. (c) Chinese muscular policies in South China Sea. Without placing a value judgment on the Chinese position. ‘A Country on Sale’. disregarding others’ needs. the centrifugal forces in China. in return for energy supplies in Africa and other places. Well informed and experienced as you are.e. seeking security of energy flows. You are all aware or what is otherwise called China’s Malacca conundrum – the Malacca straits issue. Chinese anxieties about what they call ‘splittism’ i. (b) There is a talk of ‘string of pearls’ – the Chinese bases in many places. One Western paper called it. the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has signed a massive contract for Chinese infrastructure in return for mineral supply. is a major issue that everybody must bear in mind. How is the rapidly rising power going to be dealt with? How is it going to be engaged? How might India and China engage themselves with each other? Chinese policy trends can be seen through some major global positions which China has taken:(a) First is on the question of Taiwan. To quote the US Treasury Secretary Geithner. Recently. China’s voice was the most powerful in critiquing the Western countries on their policy of profligate spending. “China has led the global economic recovery. particularly to the Dollar.

Let me give you two examples. (g) There is a question of China’s military modernisation and capabilities in ‘Space’. therefore. While China is in the 6-Party talks with DPRK. clearly in violation of internationally accepted human rights standards. China’s rise and the power shift. the Japanese influence in China is very low. the US will need to become allies with Japan. On 25th March this year in the University of Chicago. also disturbs many.” . On each of these issues a Chinese policy image can be built. China has taken an independent line and has been against imposing sanctions. First. (f) There is a question of Chinese response to North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and positions. to form a balancing coalition around China. It produces extreme response from right wing to left wing. China’s aid to states. the well known commentator Mearsheimer said. there were some conclusions. and I quote him. Linked with this is the Chinese position on ‘sanctions’ against Iran for its nuclear transgressions.RISE OF CHINA 35 IMF has cautioned the DRC that at this rate. South Korea. “There will be a Cold War between the USA and China. between March and June this year. as given by that survey. that China behaves unpredictably. There is another perception from the USA of an extreme kind. will have a finger to point at other countries. Russia. its intentions are at best questionable. That is the power of economic aid and grants which the Chinese are making. its positions have been softer than the rest of the 5 members. their debt re-payment would become more difficult. In a survey conducted in Japan. Third. is watched very carefully. there were three perceptions in Japan. Second. To stop China becoming the greatest power. Global power shifts have not occurred very frequently and rarely have they occurred peacefully. The Chinese themselves. Initially. That is one perception. India. Vietnam and Singapore.

He looked at two options in that study. It just shows the anxieties that are created when a power shift is taking place. We saw President George W Bush attempting a balancing role between Tokyo and Beijing. . will it be a threatening and de-stabilising power? As a result we see ‘hedging strategies’ by its neighbours and other powers. against the US advice. if it maintains the current economic trend lines. when China. even as it forms part of a US led security alliance. and is building a new level of the Armed Forces. of ‘containment’ and ‘engagement’. How will the USA deal with China? Two approaches are under consideration. and at the same time continuing to retain strong dependence on the USA. We saw the EU pushing sale of arms to China. an interesting phrase! If we look at the manner in which the US Presidents have dealt with China from Mr Nixon to Clinton. around 2030. Take for example Australia. He called it ‘Congagement’. ‘Managed Great Power Relations’. from one of purely continental defence to an out of area capacity.36 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Now this is another extreme of opinion. Japan’s massive investments in China. The first is of. the question being asked today is: In 20 years time. because they knew that market was important to them. the notion of managed great power relations can be seen to operate. with its massive increase in mineral exports to China which benefits the Australian economy. RAND Corporation produced a study done by Zalmay Khalilzad who later on became the Ambassador to Afghanistan etc. It was the Australians who talked of the proposal for a ‘Strategic Quadrilateral’ and the East Asian Summits etc. what will be the position? What will be the status of internal stability in China? Will China be a cooperative and stabilising power? Or. to Mr Bush and now Mr Obama. These are all responses to their anxieties on China. will certainly overtake the US economy. In the year 2000. He recommended that the United States should follow a policy combining both containment and engagement. Australia has made a strategic shift. Therefore. on security issues.

We would keep China informed of our negotiations with the Soviet Union and in considerable detail. China’s assertive behaviour disturbs India. We would conclude no agreement at the expense of Chinese interests but we would not give Peking veto over our actions. President Mr Obama has talked of no containment and not doing anything to harm China’s interest. We followed this scrupulously – although since Moscow was the stronger party we briefed it much less precisely or frequently. Not so long ago. Let me. has said only last week. Contrary to optimistic predictions just a decade ago. He talks of ‘The Cold War Triangle’ between the USA. That policy has already come under severe criticism because it is feared by some that it will only re-inforce Chinese aggressive behaviour or assertive conduct.” The article goes on to quote the Secretary . we would take account of Peking’s views. Washington Post. Unfortunately. “Administrative officials seem to believe that the era of great-power competition is over. so have its ambitions.RISE OF CHINA 37 How was this managed during the Cold War? Let me give you a quotation from Henry Kissinger’s Memoirs. I quote. We would make those agreements with the Soviet Union which we considered in our national interest.” How would the USA. Russia and China. The second approach is of ‘Strategic Assurance’. Both are coming to their own conclusions. As the Keynote speaker mentioned and the Indian Prime Minister said in Washington. and we would resist any attempts by Moscow to achieve hegemony over China or elsewhere. therefore. China has used its wealth to build a stronger and more capable military. As it has grown richer. “We had to walk a narrow path. This is especially true of its naval ambitions. which is now economically stressed. read out what a US major newspaper. our China experts believed it was absurd for China to aspire to a “blue-water” navy capable of operating far from its shores. But we would give no assurance of a condominium. China is behaving exactly as one would expect a great power to behave. that is not the reality in Asia. deal with a resurgent China? Allies are anxious and China’s neighbours are watching. As its military power has grown.

substantially. They share views on climate change and emissions policy. will determine not only their relations with China. titled. Both. on ‘No First Use’ of nuclear weapons. The approaches its neighbours and great powers adopt to meet the ‘Rise of China’. The Report “The rise of China and India as major trading nations in manufacturing and services will affect world markets. Under the circumstances. but the strategic balance in this Century. what would Chinese and Indian reactions be in the years to come? There is a tug of war which we see reflected in the media etc. Both are jockeying for regional and global influence. China’s rise to great power position is not in doubt. In my opinion the fears of a conflict between China and India are overstated. despite many disagreements. They have shared commitments. Both have combined joint naval and military exercises. with the two options that I have indicated. They both await the US to ratify the CTBT before they will think of joining it. for example. India and the Global Economy’. systems…. ‘Dancing with the Giants: China. Both are being sought as partners in the emerging security architecture. and hence change the environment in which other countries make their economic decisions. . They are committed not to test nuclear weapons.38 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 of Defence Robert Gates and the Pacific Area Commander Admiral Willard saying similar things. have joint interests and are joined in their commitments.” This has already begun to happen. It is useful to note a World Bank Report of 2007.

After lot of comments. I integrate these three concepts in one phrase. this new understanding and thinking about development is termed Beijing ‘consensus’. Internationally. peaceful rise. China’s new leadership. ‘peaceful development’ is the means and the road to achieve the goal and ideal of a ‘harmonious world’. China’s new leadership believes that China should have a balanced. Here. ‘peaceful development for harmonious world. Hu-Jintao and Weng-Jiabao have proposed several new concepts. and then comes international environment.RISE OF CHINA 39 Session I: Second Paper Professor Zhang Guihong During my presentation. ‘As peaceful development for or towards harmonious world.’ Here. evaluation and debate in Academia and the Government. I would like to evaluate the main features and dimensions of this grand strategy. I will all answer the four questions listed in Session 1 agenda. one by one. China’s leader Deng Xio Ping put up the concept of ‘peace and development’. Since 2003. scientific and sustainable development model. such as. the new Chinese leadership sees . environment friendly development and people first policy etc. peaceful development and harmonious world. First question is: ‘What is China’s grand strategy?’ China’s grand strategy can be summarised. In early 1980’s. Current GDP. This grand strategy is deeply rooted in Chinese cultural tradition. socio economic situation and international environment. After nearly 30 years of economic reform and opening up. these concepts have been guidelines of the Chinese foreign policy in the new Century. which highlights the connection between domestic development and foreign relations’. (a) First is the domestic situation as the background.

(c) Third point concerns intention and capability of the grand strategy. e. the Government has attached more importance to economy. multilateral approach and mutually beneficial cooperation. China is more likely than before to take initiative and make use of its growing economic capabilities.40 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 ‘peace and development’ as the new theme of the era. The second question is: ‘Is China’s political system compatible with uninterrupted economic growth?’ China’s ‘one ruling party’ system has inherent advantage as well as disadvantage in promoting economic growth. The new strategy is focussing on multilateralism. in the field of UN Peacekeeping operations and assistance to African countries. everytime Chinese top leaders visit foreign countries to address international conferences. As you can see. China’s new leadership has more confidence to express Chinese interests and concerns and actively make proposals and suggestions for international affairs. energy. international responsibility. but it is also to construct a favourable and stable national environment for economic development. The advantages are: the ability of social mobilisation.g.. to construct preferred international environment rathar than merely adapting itself to it. According to this new grand strategy. consultation and democratisation. The goal of the grand strategy is not only to maintain national security and integrity or sovereignty. With regard to the means. To put forward a series of new concepts. We mean three things: common development. China today is emphasising more on international contribution and responsibility. harmonious region etc. As interest and influence expands worldwide. (b) Second point is about the aims and the means of this grand strategy. Stability of the surrounding area and international system is crucial to achieve this goal. they respond and make some proposals on international affairs. public diplomacy. continuum of the . such as ‘new security concept’.

religious bottlenecks and severe environment problems.RISE OF CHINA 41 government and its policy. political stability and administrative efficiency etc. However. On the other hand. growing regional disparity. Soviet Union. . because so far in world history. weaker civil society. The third question: ‘Is China’s rise peaceful?’ Yes. particularly for the USA. latent official corruption. There are always doubts challenging China’s peaceful rise. increasing gap between the rich and the poor and unequal access to education. It is a business involving at least two actors. They think. high administrative costs. that the key programme is about how the Chinese leaders and people will deal with this issue. They are also suspicious about China’s commitment to peaceful development and environment of the world. things have changed. When China became strong and a leader since 1980. from my understanding. Some argue that the concept of peaceful rise is unlikely. there has never been any power that has risen peacefully. Others believe that China’s strong quest for energy and resources may come in conflict with national interests of some countries. 20 years later. China’s successful rise may not be acceptable to some countries. it was involved in military conflicts and wars with the USA. peace is not maintained just by your own will. China today confronts a lot of problems and challenges including rising unemployment. All these problems can only be resolved through deepening of reforms for the proposed building of market economy and a ‘rule of law’ of state. According to international theory. weak legal system. population problem. the disadvantages include: lack of transparency and freedom. when China was weak and poor from 1949 to 1979. India and Vietnam. serious corruption. I hold an optimistic view on the prospects of China’s rise which is based on the following reasons:(a) Looking back sixty years. Others think that given the values and origins of the political system.

President Obama said ten days ago in Tokyo. cooperative and comprehensive US-China relationship for the 21st Century. China prefers to promote innovation of international system in a cooperative way rather than to be a revolutionary. China welcomes the USA and Asia Pacific nations that contribute to peace. According to the US-China joint statement issued in Beijing a week ago. (c) China has benefitted from the current international system. stability and prosperity in the region. it cannot easily use force as a confrontational means. the US reiterated that. prosperous and successful China that played a greater role in international affairs. our Indian friends will have similar and more positive attitude on China’s rise after this Conference. China believes that it can be improved gradually through reforms. to either contain China or to prevent its rise. The two countries will take concrete actions to steadily build a partnership to address common challenges. Both sides reiterated that they were committed to building a positive. the considered view in China is that there are four dimensions or features of foreign policy which form the framework of political-diplomatic moves in support of her grand strategy. So. Though there are some unfair and unequal characterstics of the current international system. They are :- .42 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (b) Peaceful and stable foreign relations. otherwise the result will be a losing game instead of a win-win situation. (e) Europe. that the US will not seek to contain China. The last question: ‘What are China’s politico-diplomatic moves in support of her Grand strategy’? According to my understanding. (d) As the USA has declined relatively. Russia and some other major powers make positive comments on China’s demonstration of peaceful rise and I hope. it welcomed a strong.

RISE OF CHINA 43 (a) The first dimension is: China regards its relationship with its neighbouring countries as a priority. where it can contribute by playing a greater role. So. European Union and India as a key to its foreign policy. to become a more active member of the global and regional institutions. Russia. settling border issues with neighbouring countries through negotiations. These actions form the approach of its political-diplomatic moves. e. (c) The third dimension is: China regards its relations with major powers including the USA. . Second is to increase economic relations independently with countries in the region. China tries to build up different kinds of partnerships with these major powers. China seeks to actively participate and make its contribution. (e) The last point is. including several other points. the first feature is to try and establish a good neighbourhood over land and sea in the neighbouring countries. (b) The second dimension is: China regards being largest developing country as the basis of their foreign policy. China has been deeply involved in regional integration in the South East Asia and the Central Asia and tries to act in cooperation with South Asian countries to promote prosperity in the region. China tries to stand up with and support the developing countries. (d) The fourth dimension is: The international arena where China sees space for itself.g. As you can see that we have solved border problems with Russia and Myanmar.

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Initially. China had emphasised. several recent pronouncements by the Chinese leadership and other stakeholders indicate that certain interpretations could be made of these statements. for a long time in the past. G-2. China’s goal is to build a “well-off society” by 2020 – that of reaching the socio-economic standards of the developed Western European countries. its ability to realise these goals are likely to be challenged by rising countries in the region. further emphasised. active role in international political and economic institutions. Internationally. etc. As the 16 th Chinese Communist Party Congress in 2002 and reiterated by the 17th Party Congress in 2007. However. Deng Xiaoping emphasised on “economic development at the centre” and advocated “hiding capabilities and biding for time”. . “Beijing Consensus”.. In the early 1980s. in addition to the US. All these are to convert the nation into a “rich country and strong army”. as a consequence of the rise of China in hard and soft power aspects. as the Common Programme of September 1949 and subsequently the four constitutions (till 1982 and since amended) indicated China’s objectives domestically are to enhance substantially GDP figures. new approaches are noticed in China’s external responses that point towards maximalist perspectives.RISE OF CHINA 45 Session I : Third Paper Professor Srikanth Kondapalli Abstract While China had not issued an explicit grand strategic outline of its current and future course of action domestically and internationally. It is argued in this paper that although China’s sights are now set at the strategic levels and it has been concertedly preparing for the realisation of “strategic opportunities”. viz. on minimalist foreign policy goals of stressing and protecting its perceived sovereignty and territorial integrity and maintaining its perspective.

China’s goal is to build a “well-off society” by 2020 – that of reaching the socio-economic standards of the developed Western European countries. Initially.46 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Introduction While China had not issued any explicit grand strategic outline of its current and future course of action domestically and internationally. it is estimated that China would be . Next year. 2 To some extent these were met – not only were Hong Kong and Macau united under China in 1997 and 1999 respectively. the Chinese government intends to “quadruple the 2000 GDP to 4 trillion US dollars with a per capita GDP of 3.a common thread among these “two line” struggles indicated to the relevance. In the early 1980s. Deng Xiaoping emphasised on “economic development at the centre” and advocated “hiding capabilities and biding for time”. further emphasised. several recent pronouncements by the Chinese leadership and other stakeholders indicate that certain interpretations could be made of these statements. Several Chinese premiers and presidents had mentioned that the GDP figures would be quadrupled. while at the same time protecting perceived claims on Tibet. Inner Mongolia. of the Communist Party’s rule as well as the necessity for furthering the agricultural and industrial output. but also that the GDP had been increased to an estimated $4. as the Common Programme of September 1949 and subsequently the four constitutions (till 1982. and since amended) indicated China’s objectives domestically are to consolidate the Communist Party’s rule in the country and enhance substantially GDP figures. nay centrality. All these are to convert the nation into a “rich country and a strong army”.000 US dollars”. Although this blueprint had substantially altered – given the political movements related to Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution .6 trillion in 2009– making China as the third largest economy after the United States and Japan. Hong Kong and Macau issues. Taiwan. As President Hu Jintao mentioned in his address to the Bo Ao Forum for Asia in April 2004.1 As the 16th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress in 2002 and reiterated by the 17th Party Congress in 2007. Xinjiang.

as a consequence of the rise of China in hard and soft power aspects. and while very . despite the global financial meltdown in 2008-09. its ability to realise these goals are likely to be challenged by rising countries in the region. China in 2009 was able to maintain 8. viz. foreign policy was made to serve the national strategy of economic development – by attracting foreign direct investment. a few caveats are in order. Internationally. on minimalist foreign policy goals of stressing and protecting its perceived sovereignty and territorial integrity and maintaining its perspective. technology and sustaining exports. ‘Beijing Consensus’..2 trillion by 2009.7 per cent economic growth rate and exported $2 trillion worth of goods (while Germany exported $1. in addition to the US. Macau. These provide scope for the flowering of more articulate China’s grand strategy formulations in the future. However. China made significant progress and with the $70 billion in official defence budget in 2009. Considerable diplomatic pressure was mounted on Hong Kong. China had emphasised.17 trillion). Also. its rise in the recent two decades. it becomes the largest spender in Asia. surging exports contributed to the enhancement in the coffers of China – estimated at more than $2. Xinjiang and Inner Mongolian issues as well. etc. Tibet.RISE OF CHINA 47 able to displace Japan in these economic figures. G-2. it was only after Taiwan was displaced from the United Nations in 1971 that the People’s Republic of China (PRC) was able to take its ‘rightful’ place at this international forum with veto power. This paper analyses the main strands in the Chinese debates on China’s grand strategy. Chinese government statistics indicated that. Nevertheless. new approaches are noticed in China’s external responses that point towards moving into maximalist foreign policy perspectives. As a consequence. and argues that although China’s sights are now set at the strategic levels and it has been concertedly preparing for the realisation of ‘strategic opportunities’. Also. While the concept of grand strategy originated in the US3. for a long time in the past. Militarily as well. active role in international political and economic institutions.

Subsequently. China is yet to unveil full-fledged and comprehensive grand strategic formulations and can be said that this is still in the making. it is still in the process of unveiling major aspects of such a strategy. although several Chinese still consider that they have to further develop the theoretical contours of such a phenomenon. had proposed principles for the rejuvenation of the country. democracy and livelihood). China is legion in attracting global attention in terms of grand strategy. great power diplomacy (daguo waijiao). which appeared comprehensive solutions for those times.6 China’s Grand Strategy As a country which insists on learning from the ancient strategies. although as a relatively developing country in the recent period. as a developing country.48 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 few Chinese historically delved on such subjects with the exception of some Chinese scholars in the last decade.4 Secondly. it appears that the Chinese discourse on the subject has similar themes as in the western literature. Thus. proposed ‘Three Principles of People’s Livelihood’ (with nationalism. which galvanised several sections of the population. proved inconclusive. etc.7 In the pre-modern and modern periods. the May Fourth Movement. After the People’s Republic of China (PRC) was established in October 1949. Dr Sun Yat-sen. although largely not cohesive and ‘grand’ in scale. which forbid any grand strategy formulations. “grand strategy” (da zhanlue). The Hundred Days of reform of 1898 proved to be inconclusive in the fast changing fortunes of the empire. strategy (zhanlue). the country became a victim of the Japanese inroads and civil war.5 In this sense. in the light of the battering with which China was subjected by the Western powers during the late Qing dynasty period.. considered by both CCP and the Kuomintang (KMT) as their founding father. viz. conditions were . a few Chinese concepts come closer to this phenomenon. Sun Zi in the sixth century BC is credited to have triggered the Chinese minds on overcoming the adversaries through strategy and without using force. Likewise. Wei Yuan. several Chinese have indicated to their interest in grand strategy.

Mischief . Deng’s China (inclusive of Jiang Zemin from 1989-2004 and currently under Hu Jintao). China also debated the grand strategic contours. even as intermittent skirmishes with Taiwan confined China to the East Asia box. with the increases in comprehensive national power of the country. favourable reform policies. the then Soviet Union (1969) and with Vietnam (1979). such a vision envisaged firstly enhancing the material wealth of the country – with economic development at the centre and under the CCP’s rule. engaging all countries for the smooth flow of investments and technologies into China and even postponing conflicts for a long time except.10 Indeed. Hong Kong. on core sovereignty issues.RISE OF CHINA 49 conducive for such strategies. with India (1962). this slogan. In the last three decades of reform and opening up. Zhou Enlai and others did provide for strategic thinking and inputs between 1949-76 as reflected in the ‘leaning to one side’ (towards the then Soviet Union). Essentially including the minimalist foreign policy positions of Mao and others (viz. Five Principles for Peaceful Co-existence or ‘good neighbourliness’ policy and Three World construct. China had unveiled – with relative successes – several concepts and initiated steps in this regard. as it were.all provided for inputs into the Chinese grand strategy and implementation. Disintegration of the Soviet Union that reduced military threats from the North.sovereignty over Taiwan. Essentially. the core interests .11 Mention should be made of the occupation of the Paracels from Vietnam in 1974. the weak material base for such grand design proved costly for China till Deng Xiaoping’s reform and opening up provided for certain concrete inputs such as is reflected in the concept of ‘taoguang yanghui’ (hiding capabilities and biding for time/maintaining a low profile). although the country was soon drawn into wars with the US in the Korean Peninsula (1951-53). multilateral efforts with several ‘partners’ globally and changes in the CCP policies9 . emboldened.. Yet. called for focussing on economic development. unveiled in 1989. unveiled a grand strategy.8 Although still in the making. Mao Zedong. Macao and ‘lost territories’). engagement with the outside world.

15 Several Chinese scholars . as reflected in the six white paper issued on national defence and the 16th and 17th Party Congresses reports13.14 China’s premier Wen Jiabao. China Rise Phenomenon The above grand formulations have to be fulfilled by the comprehensive rise of China. Three concepts recur in the Chinese debates. conducted grand events such as Beijing Olympics in August 200812.50 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Reef from the Philippines in 1988. also rejected the idea of G-2. the Chinese leadership believes in enhancing firstly its economic and military profile in the international system so as to form the foundation for its concerted role in the international order. it includes enhancements in the comprehensive national power of the country. and multilateral initiatives in the political and security fields (such as with Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and East Asian Summit) and in the economic fields (Bo Ao Forum). it wants to retain its autonomy in the international relations and even become a great power. specifically in the last decade of Chinese economic. The phenomenon of China rise is of recent origin. At the same time. international pattern and the international order. In China’s case. commons security concept. international system. Nevertheless. specifically in the light of the decline of the US in events such as Iraq and Afghanistan. at the dinner meeting with the US President during the latter’s visit to Beijing in November 2009. etc. To summarise and outline the major components of China’s grand strategy.. it can be argued that China presently wants to maintain and support the current international strategic situation so as to build a “well-off society” by 2020. although some Chinese trace back such rise to the halcyon days of the Middle Kingdom. While the first two indicate to an objective situation of interactions between states (and also non-state actors). new security concept. viz. military and soft power increase. in brief. expansion in the exclusive economic zone in 1992.order – indicates to the subjective desires of the country concerned. the third concept .

Men argued that in explaining the complex phenomenon of China rise.16 Zheng Bijian in his speech at the BoAo Forum of Asia on 25 April 2004 observed candidly that China’s rise may usher competition in the Asia-Pacific region. Subsequently. an associate professor at the international strategic research institute of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Central Committee Party School. A comprehensive description of China rise is provided by Men Honghua. several officials and scholars in China have reflected on this phenomenon. (c) ‘Zhongguo weixie lun’ (China threat theory). to ward off any negative connotations that ‘rise’ indicates. nearly twenty Chinese scholars reportedly had worked out the major arguments of this thesis to systematically counter the security concerns expressed by China’s neighbours and those in the West. and conduct flexible cooperation to achieve marked results”. (b) ‘Zhongguo gongxian lun’ (Theory of China contribution). However.RISE OF CHINA 51 debated the phenomenon and strategies for China’s rise in the last decade. or competition for spheres of influence or hegemony”. vice president of the CCP Central Party School at Bo Ao Forum for Asia in 2003. . not competition of arms buildup. but argued that such competition would take the path of “friendship. scholars and others in China and elsewhere have proposed different theories as follows: (a) ‘Zhongguo jiyu lun’ (Theory of China as a favourable opportunity). in the discourse of late has been a tendency to rephrase the phenomenon as merely ‘peace and development’. a year before this speech. mutual benefit and win-win situation. He also advocated establishing “communities of common interests” in East Asia and “sub-regional mechanisms with different functions and features. Enlisted below are some main ideas in China. as the following section indicates. cooperation. However. The concept of ‘peaceful rise’ (heping jueqi) of China was proposed by Zheng Bijian.

More pronounced on the subject were the views of Yan in his 1997 coedited publication on ‘Zhongguo Jueqi: Guoji huanqing pinggu’ [China Rise: International Environmental Assessment] (Tianjin People’s Publications. 1997). in one way or the other have shaped our understanding about the phenomenal changes that China is undergoing not only in its domestic political. mainly outside China (b) ‘Dache lilun’ [Hitchhike theory] by mainly Chinese scholars who argued that since rising Germany and Japan failed quickly.18 Yan Xuetong identified three main streams of thought in China and elsewhere on this subject: (a) ‘Zhongguo weixie lun’ [China threat theory] by scholars.52 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (d) ‘Zhongguo bengkui lun’ (China collapse theory). and (e) ‘Zhongguo jingji shuifen lun’ (China’s economic moisture (surplus exaggeration) theory). it is better . Yan discussed three main aspects of China’s cultural tradition. Yan defined ‘rise’ as the gap between the burgeoning strength of a large country and the simultaneous reduction of other powerful nations or even surpassing the strength of these latter powerful countries. economic and military sectors but also in its interactions with other countries at the regional and global levels. as is evident. So the crucial words here are ‘catching up and surpassing’ and ‘acceleration’ in the power of the rising country. The concept had emerged in the light of ‘China threat theory’.17 Each one of these theories. Ren Donglai traced the earliest work in China on peaceful rise phenomenon to Yan Xuetong who wrote an article ‘Lengzhan hou Zhongguo de duiwai anquan zhanlue’ (China’s external security strategy in the post Cold War era) in the 8 th issue of China Institute of Contemporary International Relations journal in 1995. national interests and strategic calculations.

as follows: (a) Push forward with determination the path of socialist market economy with Chinese characteristics and socialist political and economic democratic system (b) Promoting Chinese civilisational aspects. the following two scholars’ assessments are based on historical explanations. Famous exponent of this school is Zheng Bijian when he made a speech at Bo Ao Forum in 2003. (c) ‘Shidai butong lun’ [Distinct era theory] by ‘objective’ scholars who viewed that in the current period. China should follow a policy of ‘good neighbourliness’ and blend with the international system and avoid using military force. Nevertheless.RISE OF CHINA 53 for China to follow the path of avoiding opposition to the US hegemony. and (c) Pursue overall regional. (d) ‘Xin renshi lun’ [New understanding theory] sported mainly by those closer to the Chinese government who viewed current Chinese policy as ‘economic construction at centre’ and that China will not contend for hegemony with the US. ‘peaceful rise’ would be the national strategic principle in which there are three sub clauses.19 A Chinese writer mentioned that under this concept China would strive for international peace and all-round development of the country.20 While some scholars have pointed out that the current “rise” of China is its fourth such rise in its history. economic and social development and harmonious growth of urban and countryside for building a well-off society.000 years revealed to Xu Boyuan not an expansionistic empire from the two main . A revisionist analysis of historical events of the last 5. while the rest focus on contemporary events. According to Zheng. It rules out use of force. most of the accounts generally trace to the last two decades.

economic restructuring. entered the World Trade Organisation. Macao and Taiwan. Xu argued that in an age of globalisation. with observations from scholars at Shanghai. and the like. this region is poised to become the focus of the world.21 Stating that of the 28 civilisations.22 After following the debates within China and other countries. argued that China’s rise would result in national cohesion and would make the country most powerful in the AsiaPacific region.54 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Yellow and Yangtze river valley civilisations but that of cultural stability. Hong Kong.23 Luo Yuan. They conclude. especially in China. He proposed three stages in such a rise: (a) Construction [yingzao] stage in which China should promote peaceful environment in its periphery and safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity (b) Moulding [suzao] stage in which China would pursue policies to . etc and these reflect its responsible behaviour. that China has participated in multilateral institutions. critical energy and environmental security aspects. Does the rise of China entail any negative impact on others as mentioned in the ‘China threat’ theory? Is there a specific ‘China experience’ that can be learnt or emulated by others. would this lead to a ‘strong China that does not determine’? They bring about issues related to the ‘overheating’ of the economy. 18 have disappeared from earth. chairman of Strategy Research Institute of the PLA Academy of Military Science. cultural stability of the country would be an asset. specifically in the economic growth rates? Is there any specific ‘Chinese contribution’ or ‘China opportunity’? Given the official rhetoric about China being a responsible country. several interesting themes were outlined by Dai Wenming and others in describing the China rise phenomenon. Given the economic dynamism of the Asia-Pacific region. Zhou Bajun argued that 21st Century belongs to that of China. population ageing. respected the United Nations mandates.

. This is conducive for China to achieve higher strategic ability to not only wage a dozen local wars successfully but. On the other hand. the only existing powerful countries in the world are those with strong military strength. China if it neglects/forgets war preparation. by emphasising military modernisation. according to Luo. guojiang buguo” [a country without defence would not remain a country]. restrain a war from breaking. The third aspect that Luo bestows on China. the military should have to provide ‘escort’ functions. urban migration. Therefore. even if China rises without any military backing.24 For China’s rise in the next 30-50 years. it would not be able to retain its influence long and will certainly decline. is its strong international coordinating [xietiao] ability. achieve internal stability and avoid Tiananmen Square kind of incidents and resolve internal socio-economic problems like river-water diversion. Luo warns. for a rising China. Luo stated that of all these three stages. on the path to rapid rise with defence preparation. etc. grain production.RISE OF CHINA 55 shape the events and regain lost territories (c) Plan and control [jinglue] stage in which by political [or military ?] means the international community accepts China’s efforts in building a new political economic international order that ensures strategic balance and stability. Luo advocates that higher attention should be paid to the defence sector during the course of China’s rise. He contended that emphasis on peace does not mean that China should neglect the defence sector. Luo cites an old proverb “youguo wufang. more importantly. it should abide by the rules of the global order and UN resolutions. The second aspect that China can possess. Indeed. wangzhan biwei]. In his support. it would face disaster in its path to peaceful rise [heping jueqi. is strategic autonomy that ensures independence from adversary’s control of strategic resources. The experience of Qing Dynasty clearly validates this assertion. Indeed it should strengthen its defence forces. currently China is at the first stage mentioned above.

26 Conclusion China’s comprehensive rise in the global power matrix had kindled debates on China’s grand strategy in the recent period. China. While a small power would adopt a strategy of allying with other powers for its security. As China entered into globalisation phase. China is being counted internationally due to its rise in CNP terms – it is respected or feared – a prophesy Napoleon spoke about in the 19th century. should adopt a great power strategy in which there should be a coordination between the concepts of strong/ powerful nation (qiangguo). which have huge potential.56 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Li Zizheng here implies that China and India. China needs to adopt a great power strategy for the coming years as the international influence of China is set to grow phenomenally. and increase in its strength. international security and strategic contours are increasingly getting enmeshed with China as a major factor. but argues that unity between the two can be arrived at through proper coordination. Most important. rich people (fumin) and environment (huanqing meijing). China should choose this as the ‘fulcrum’ of all its strategies and enhance the military capabilities of the country to ensure the country’s ‘independence’. the number of millionaires in the country. is the emphasis placed on qiangguo (powerful nation) than to the other elements. should learn from the lessons of the US unilateral actions. Therefore. Gu notes that China’s rise faces stiff competition [qiangli jingzheng] from India and from the resourceful Japan. He argues that keeping in view China’s large territory. there are several fault lines in the linear progress of China’s . China needs to follow its own ‘survival’ strategy. being a large power. according to Gu. For the first time in its history. faster economic growth rates. However. resources. living standards. He does agree that there exists antagonistic contradiction between the coexistence of a strong nation and rich people or environmental problems as a result of building up of a powerful nation.25 According to Professor Gu Haibing of the People’s University.

Private entrepreneurs are now being admitted into the party and the relevant constitutional provisions are being amended.thus posing concerns for China’s rise in the longterm perspective. counter-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia. efforts are being made to broad-base the 73 million-cadre CCP. viz.RISE OF CHINA 57 CNP. the Chinese leadership had taken some corrective measures to wriggle out of these challenges. decision-making and challenge) (Shishi Publications. Zhongguo Da Zhanlue (China’s . extremism and splittism). juece. Thirdly. environmental degradation. Nevertheless. the guidelines of Deng Xiaoping on biding for time and regional security dynamics could challenge the balance . widening ethnic tensions. 1991) 4 See.. Xiao Jialing and Tang Xianxing eds.boaoforum. Secondly. 2003) 2 volumes. and dependency on high-seas and trans-boundary regions for trade and energy supplies. 2004 at <http:// www. China is also taking initiatives in projecting power as reflected in the peace-keeping operations abroad. CCP stability. Yet. and on Japan and Vietnam is instructive in this regard. para-military forces are being strengthened and counter-terrorism exercises launched with concerned countries. For instance. growing middle-class aspirations. Hu Angang ed. End Notes 1 See for the full text of Hu Jintao’s speech on April 24. to counter the three evils (separatism. growing income inequalities and popular unrest. Daguo Waijiao: Lilun. 2004 2 For an extensive discussion on this topic see Hu Angang ed. and naval and air force build-up.tiaozhan (Great Power Diplomacy: Theory. 3-37 3 See Paul Kennedy (ed. for instance.org/boao/2004nh/cd/t20040424_733981. Zhongguo Da Zhanlue (China’s Grand Strategy) (Hangzhou: Zhejiang People’s Publications. Shanghai.). 2002) pp.shtml> accessed on December 20. Grand Strategies in War and Peace (New Haven: Yale University Press. China’s stance on Indian border areas.

Copenhagen. and currently Hu Jintao’s “harmonious world” to reduce tensions domestically and internationally. (2005) 133-77 9These latter included Deng Xiaoping’s Four Cardinal Principles of making the CCP as the focus. 2000) 8 See Di Dongsheng. taking a cue from Matternich’s grand strategy. 2009 7 See Michael D. 2 pp. 10Liselotte Odgaard had argued that in the post-Cold War period. viz. July 14-15. development of capacities for implementation. Royal Danish Defence College. Zhanlue Wenti Sanshi Bain – Zhongguo Duiwai Zhanlue Sikao (Thirty Studies on Strategy – Reflections on the External Strategic of China) (Beijing: People’s University Publications.12 (2007). Conference on Contemporary China. is struggling with the outside world in order to avoid being labelled as a secondary power in the international order. The Brookings Institution & National Chengchi University. approaches and concrete policies to achieve these objectives. Tellis. CA: RAND.S.. “Continuities and Changes: A Comparative Study on China’s New Grand Strategy” Historia Actual Online No. “Going Global: The Chinese Elite’s Views of Security Strategy in the 1990s ” Asian Perspective vol. Swaine and Ashley J. Faculty of Strategy and Military Operations. development of concepts.58 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Grand Strategy) (Hangzhou: Zhejiang People’s Publications. See “The Diplomatic Face of China’s Grand Strategy: A Rising Power’s Emerging Choice” The China Quarterly (2001) pp. Jiang Zemin’s ideas on “three represents” to broad base the CCP. pp. 2002) and Shi Yinhong. 29 no. China. well defined objectives. 2008) 5Avery Goldstein had argued that such a grand strategy started emerging in the Chinese thinking from 1996 after several ad hoc measures before by the leadership. coordination and adjustment. See “Metternich and China’s Post-Cold War Grand strategy” Institute for Strategy. 7-18 and Chen Mumin. Present. Interpreting China’s Grand Strategy: Past. and Future (Santa Monica. crucial to understanding the subject are a few fundamentals. 2009 . See his “Commentary on China’s External Grand Strategy” 38th Taiwan-U.835-64 6According to David Finkelstein.

see Ting Yong-Kang. air force. 6 (2004). rapid response forces and strategic rocket forces and to the lack of transparency in the military fields.org> 13 See for the six white papers at <http://www.publicdiplomacy magazine.org. 2001). The “China threat theory” reflects to the concerns expressed by scholars outside China on the concerted military modernisation programme. “Zhongguo heping jueqi de guoji zhanlue kuangjia” (International strategic framework of China’s peaceful rise) Shijie Jingji yu Zhengzhi (World Economy & Politics) (Beijing) No. Owen R. 2 (2004) pp.. and Ahn Byung-Joon. Miller (eds.dod. Lynn-Jones and Steven E.gov> 14 See Wang Yuan-Kang. “ Public Diplomacy: China’s Grand Foreign Strategy” PD Case Study: Beijing Olympics (Issue 1 Winter 2009) at <www. Sean M. “China’s Global Activism: Strategy. “China’s Grand Strategy and US Primacy: Is China balancing American power?” The Brooking Institution July 2006 15 See Michael E.china. and Tools” Institute for National Strategic Studies. Drivers. The Coming Collapse of China (New York: Random House.). specifically in the military doctrinal changes towards offensive orientations (like the PLA’s debates on “pre-emptive strike strategy” (xianfa zhiren)). 2000).cn> See also the US Department of Defense papers on the military power of China at <http://www.RISE OF CHINA 59 11 See Philip C. MA: MIT Press. 18-35 16 For an excellent analysis.chinamil. “Daguo jueqi de zhidu guangjia he sixiang chuantong” (The system frame and ideological tradition of Great Power rise) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 12. 18 Ren Donglai. US NDU Occasional Paper 4 October 2006 12 On this aspect and how Olympics contributed to enhancing China’s public diplomacy.peaceforum. The Rise of China (Cambridge.cn> or <http:// english.com. Cote. 2005 17 Men Honghua. Jr. especially in the defence budget. “The Rise of China and the Future of East Asian Integration” Asia-Pacific Review vol. Saunders. 11 no. “’Peaceful Ascendancy’ and CrossStraits Relations” at <http://www. Brown. . emphasis placed on navy.org.tw> accessed on January 4. see Qiu Huafei. The “China collapse theory” is traced to Gordon Chang’s work.

org. 2004 24 See for the views of several Chinese scholars cited above. in the process of rising. Ren noted.Jianlun Zhongguo jueqi de zhanlue yu celue” (Peaceful rise and safeguarding peace. 19 Yan Xuetong. in addition to formulating a new security concept that stresses mutual security and mutual benefit to all concerned. “Heping jueqi yu baozhang heping.cn> accessed on July 23.cpd. Tao Deyan and Zhang Binyang.60 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 2004 (originally published in Shanghai Academy of Social Science publication “Cong Lishi Jiaodu kan Daguo jueqi: Bijiao yu Jiejian” (Looking from the view point of Great Power Rise: Comparisons and Lessons Drawn) Wujiang.al. “’Zhongguo jueqi’ yiwei shenme?” (What is the meaning of ‘China rise’?) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue (Chinese Political Studies) May 26. 2004 22 Zhou Bajun. defeats another major power through military means. 2005). “Zhongguo heping jueqi de lishi yiju” (The historical essence of China’s peaceful rise) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 27. “Zhuanjia zonglun Zhongguo heping jueqi jinglue” Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 18. (All references to Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue are at <http://www.A brief theoretical note on the strategy and policy of China rise) Guoji Wenti Yanjiu (Studies on International Issues) No. et. 2005 (originally printed in Hong Kong Business Daily). that a country can decisively march to become a power in the international field when. “Zhongguo de weilai xingxiang: Fennu de minzu haishi lixing de daguo?” (The future image of China: Angry nation or a rational great power?) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue (Chinese Political Studies) September 14. 21 Xu Boyuan. Zhou traced Chinese strength in terms of rise in Gross Domestic Product figures after the reform and opening policies were launched in 1978. 3 (2004) 20 Zheng Bijian cited at “’Zhongguo heping jueqi’ lun youlai” (Origins of the theory of ‘China’s peaceful rise’” Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue May 18. 23 Dai Wenming. March 2004). 2004 (originally published in Guoji Xianqu Daobao). Jiangsu Province. Zheng insisted here that China should follow a foreign policy of peace and development in which it would not bully or exploit other countries. citing Mandelbaum’s thesis. 2004 (originally published in Guoji Xianqu Daobao) .

RISE OF CHINA 61 25 Li Zizheng cited at “Jueqi de Zhongguo ying geng lijie shijie xianghu yicun zhongyao xing” (Rising China should understand the significance of mutual global co-existence) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue June 22. 2004 26 “Zhongguo ying xuanze daguo zhanlue: Fang Zhongguo Renmin daxue jiashou Gu Haibing” (China needs to adopt a great power strategy: Interview with Chinese People’s University professor Gu Haibing) Zhongguo Zhengzhi Xue June 29. 2004 (article originally published in China Economic Times) .

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However. since the Chinese Revolution of 1911”. Even within the Party there is strong resistance to political reforms. On 1 October. It had been predicted that China would be accomplishing social change because of it’s economic growth and progress in modernisation. both. China still continues this policy. France the third with 5.4 per cent. while China becomes strong and . democracy. would pursue capitalism. the achievement of economic development in China does not directly lead to political reforms of the Chinese Communist Party. but observing the GDP of the world’s nations in 1820. What is China’s grand strategy? China is parading the national slogan of “A great resurgence of the Chinese race. an economic and a military power. and through reformation and liberation policies. 2009. By holding fast to a ruling system by the Communist Party. It may not be clear what is meant by “the great resurgence of the Chinese race”. and the USA the fourth with 1. After 30 years.7 per cent. China now seeks an identity as “a rich and powerful nation. the Chinese showed their power plus their political system. India the second with 16 per cent. to use a different term. However. At the end of 1970’s. to become. China seems to be aiming at a second advent of that position. it is said that China held the first rank with 28.” or. it took one important decision about reformation and liberation policy.8 per cent. and peace.RISE OF CHINA 63 Session I : Fourth Paper Lieutenant General Masahiro Kunimi (Retd) My presentation will address the same questions from a different point of view.

64 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 affluent. how does China have a right to give a lesson to Vietnam is asked by the United Nation’s General Assembly? Will only the Chinese Communist Party decide so or not? The NATO countries also want to know it. This point is very important because China started Vietnamese war first. In the interests of rising China. the dictatorial inclination of the Communist Party is becoming pronounced – which strengthens its challenging posture as a new power in the leadership of Asia. China is deepening relations with non-democratic and anti-USA countries. Peaceful rise or not. However. China would cut off trade with countries that criticise the policy of Chinese Communist Party. This is very important. because at that time China wanted to teach Vietnam a lesson. the Chinese Communist Party is to formulate individual.” China aims at “multipolarisation” and economic “globalisation” in the future as distinctive from the “bipolar structure” of the Cold War era and the “uni-polar. multi-power” structure of the post Cold War period. To maintain domestic stability. logical self-justifying policies. China continues to pursue economic growth for future development through reforms and liberation policies. The likelihood of China being vigorously antagonistic is quite high. China tries to ward off regional destabilisation. At the collapse of the former Soviet Union. and against such countries that compete with China in the race to secure resources. Now. and to resolutely put even belligerent policies into practice in order to gain victory over competing nations. It is essential for China to secure resources such as petroleum and iron ore that underpin economic growth. no country could . China avoids decisive confrontation with great powers such as the USA and Russia. In order to sustain its economic development and domestic stability. What are China’s politico-diplomatic moves in support of its grand strategy? The basis of diplomatic strategy is omni directional partnership to serve “economic interests. To maintain resources.

Chinese GDP would be equal to that of the USA. directly pointing to the USA and irritating the US superpower. and also in regional and domestic issues. China-Taiwan relations. minority policies and also did not ask for transparency in military upgradations. and had a joint communiqué. Just now the Chinese professor mentioned about the visit of President Obama to China. and modernising . Politically and diplomatically such factors as a possible change in the situation in the Korean peninsula.RISE OF CHINA 65 directly point out to the USA. occasioned by collapse of North Korea. On the way to becoming a military power. and the worsening relationship with India and Japan may cast shadows onto the brightly lit Chinese grand strategy. In the process of becoming an economic power. on the other hand it is important to know that President Obama did not mention about Chinese human rights. China attempts to instill fear into countries of the world with its space and missile strategy. and eventually “a wealth and power” state. To attain this aim China intends to become a regional power in Asia first. Can hegemony be reduced peacefully or not? China aims at being an economic power and a military power. China wants to be similar in form to that of former Soviet Union. But. but in next fifteen years. It is also upgrading cyber-terrorism capability and strengthening. with the objective of becoming a power in the world equal to the US. while China achieves affluence by cooperation with the USA amidst a globalised economy. China takes a serious view of putting the United States into a multi-polar group. there would be friction with the international community over the scramble for resources and the rules of the market. China is at the same level as that of Japan’s GDP. Now. At the same time. it tries to soothe the US from perceiving excessive danger. The reason why these two countries agreed was because China wants to be one of the countries who holds a share in world affairs.

66 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 its conventional forces by focussing on the PLA Navy and Air Force. The time when economic growth becomes stagnant. . The theory of justifying disputes and China being always in the right will be created by China and repeatedly insisted upon to the world community. and the people’s dissatisfaction with the Communist Party becomes aggravated deserves attention. public security becomes disorderly. regional and domestic issues or would it be going on her own way to pursue ‘one’ Communist Party rule. This unyielding stance will continue. and that other parties are wrong with regard to any wars and disputes between China and the neighbouring countries post World War II. We ask of China to come together with us to share the responsibility of solving all the global. I would like to conclude by saying that China is facing a dilemma. The Chinese Communist Party has been insisting that China is right in every respect. not only in oversees political and economic policy but mainly due to domestic issues. or becoming an element of confusion. At the end of my brief. It requires attention whether China would choose a way of becoming a cooperative partner in the future in the arena of international politics. It has to decide whether China would be a good stake holder in international. and Chinese top leaders are having problems. there is a lot of dissatisfaction amongst people in China against the Chinese Central Policy. regional and domestic issues jointly. Presently.

which numbered 1. at the village level. elections are conducted in 800. (b) The number of Chinese participating in the protests is very high – 1000 to 3000 people participate in each incident. the key problem is that the Communist Party base is at the ‘county’ level and not at the village level. They have the wisdom to adjust to such challenges and problems. ‘socialist economy with Chinese characteristics’. What steps are being taken to bring about political reforms to remove this dichotomy? Responses (a) China’s concept is.000 villages. ‘county’ . So far it has helped the Chinese people to meet their development challenges successfully. This system combines ‘market economy’ and Chinese ‘socialist politics’. Between these two phenomena the Communist Party today is also suggesting that the ‘protestors go to the court’ – to the Peoples Proletariat. Therefore. which is very popular in globalised world today.RISE OF CHINA 67 Discussion . Firstly.Session I Issue Raised The increase in protest rallies in China progressively year after year indicates dichotomy between their political system and market system of economy being pursued today.000 last year. they suggested the ‘marketisation of politics’ or ‘politicisation of the market’. This compelled the Chinese Central Party School to initiate a project which has suggested that they need to move away from some of the pitfalls of the ‘market economy’.40. to deflect the protests and criticisms away from them. However. Secondly. China’s development model is unique because it tries to accommodate market economy.

to pray for their well being and happiness. (b) The Chinese leadership follows the legalistic tradition and the people follow Confucian values whereby they seek harmony and happiness in their lives. Confucian values are important in Chinese people’s daily lives. Since the ‘one’ person elected at the village elections will either become a ‘leader’ in the Communist Party or is already a ‘member’ – democratisation is limited in that respect. democracy would not be like the Indian democracy. Issue Raised What is the state of ‘Confucianism’ being adopted in China today? Since the value system suggested by sage Confucius has helped the Chinese in affecting many improvements and managing their economy so well. The Communist Party members have no Gods. It will be a democracy with Chinese characteristics. So that is one lacuna in the political reforms process. From the point of view of the ‘grand strategy’. Chinese people go to temples to seek personal happiness in their daily lives and not because of Confucian values or being religious. But ordinary people. who are apprehensive about their future because of social developments and uncertainties. (c) In China. can be seen going more and more to the temples – with some fear in their hearts. Hu Jin Tao’s ‘harmonious world’ is also derived from that.68 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 level is crucial but they are not conducting elections at the ‘county’ level. the Chinese leadership follows Tao’s philosophy and also takes the hard way of ‘politics’ by considering all things across the world and their Country. is it possible to adapt such a good system in India? Responses (a) In China there are no religious beliefs. But it is quite different for other countries. .

the military modernisation and social policy depend on Government policies and not on Party ideology. Issue Raised Is the current Communist Party ideology supportive and conducive to a ‘stand alone’ economic and military power? Response The influence of Party ideology is mainly on the communist party members. we can talk of one Tao i. Now. The economic growth. what are the conditions which would facilitate transition of China into a politically democratic country or would it continue to prefer ‘one ruling party’ system? Responses (a) Democracy is a very big concept. The Emperor’s Way. While. It has it’s own reasons . and not for giving detailed economic or military policies. there are many schools of thought. In China. with Taoism and Buddhism also in it. ‘harmony’ is central terminology but ‘Confucianism’ is the essential framework in its foreign policy relationships with other countries. when the world is looking forward to China becoming politically a democratic country. Ideology is a philosophy which provides political direction to the whole Country. Inside this framework. it can be a political system and it can be a philosophy. In the international arena.e. discussing Chinese foreign policy and grand strategy.RISE OF CHINA 69 (c) On the foreign policy front. ‘one ruling party’ system has lasted for a long time. Issue Raised It seems that China loves ‘one ruling party’ system and is also talking about Chinese political democratisation. Democracy can be a way of life. Confucianism is at the top of the framework. but it is not realistic either to impose or expect China to accept any other system. Different countries have different mechanisms to promote democracy.

what is the current Indian thinking on it? Response The proposal came in the context of new awareness on the growing Chinese influence and role. Unfortunately. the Chinese were the first to indicate their displeasure and anxiety. Therefore. was obviously going to run into difficulties. there are some political reforms underway even within the one ruling party system. (b) In China. Since India had reservations on this proposal. Any arrangement in this part of Asia which excludes China. It is called ‘inner democratisation’. these are not considered feasible. Chinese people do not want a multi-polar and multi-party political system. the proposal was seen to have been designed to create a group of countries which excluded China in this part of the world. The Chinese political system is so unique that it cannot copy any other democratic political party systems which are complicated. There are some improvements in election procedures to have more candidates to select from or compete for the posts. big and different. Rightly. and creates another group. in near term. was quite obviously directed against China. with the idea of bringing all the democracies together in a value based cooperation. Australia and Japan. We must respect the existing situation and Chinese characteristics while considering the process of political democratisation.70 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 for having one ruling party because of historical background and political characteristics. Issue Raised The Quadrilateral Cooperation Proposal from Australia involving the USA. (c) Although China has one ruling party but there are other agencies to check the policies of the ruling party. ‘one ruling party’ system is likely to continue. and questioned why it was being done? The Chinese showed that they .

like Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). China has a history of having different views about development in the Asia Pacific Region and would like to discuss its role further in this regard. and in its relationships with other countries in the region? Is it possible for both the countries to work together in future to evolve some cooperative strategies at various levels? Responses (a) Firstly. . But China would appreciate more if India plays a constructive role in terms of economic development. the proposal went into a terminal situation. Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and other institutions. political and regional stability. the proposal got scuttled. East Asia and Central Asia. Although before the Indian side could indicate. It indicates that China’s growing influence and objections. both China and India can contribute to the establishment of the Asian community by reviving their ancient civilisations. Therefore. as the move was seen to be designed to isolate China. China is happy in the ‘Rise of India’ because it will bring some benefits to them also through economic cooperation. (b) However. whether it was willing or not. Issue Raised What is the Chinese perspective on ‘Rising India’? How are they viewing India’s role in South Asia economically. Secondly. China recognises that India can play a dominant role in the Asian region including South East Asia. strategically.RISE OF CHINA 71 were not happy. China sees an increase in this kind of role in the coming years and supports it. did put a spoke into some of the proposals. China has cooperated with India in some regional organisations. Thirdly.

before that. (e) India and China are very important rising powers in the Asian region. . Germany and other countries. It means that the possibilities of enhanced duties towards the international community would increase in the future. political and military relations between them will bring peace and prosperity to the region. A new Security Council member does not mean that it has more ‘rights’ or ‘power’. because UN Council reforms are so complicated. China does not want to be an obstacle in India’s entry into the UN Security Council. Pakistan. then the region will not prosper. Close economic. including the UN Security Council. It is also suggested that if a country wants to play a more important role in international community. This is what is stated by the top leaders in their meetings and joint statements. presently there is no consensus on what kind of country can become a new Security Council member. environment protection etc.72 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (c) At the global level. it would be better if it first plays a constructive role in the regional and global affairs. it would raise complications in China’s relations with Japan. If China gives clear support for India. (d) China has clearly stated that it supports India’s greater role in the international community. But. China has very much similar positions and interests as other countries on issues such as climate change. If there are problems that remain unresolved.

In my study of China’s policies. China understandably.RISE OF CHINA 73 Session I: Chairman’s Closing Remarks Ambassador MK Rasgotra China’s ‘grand strategy’. We will concede this objective. It’s a difficult country.” That is the beginning of their de facto alliance. policies that are pursued in actual practice are at variance with stated objectives. Eventually. Chinese say that India is a rising power in South Asia. Stated policy is one thing. . has been explained at length and I will say nothing about it. It is a time of uncertainty. so on and so forth. We need not quarrel with it. It wants to be G2 in the world with the United States of America. you and we should get together. but there are many question marks there. it may wish to become G1. So far as India is concerned. The Chinese Premier Zhao en Lai met Mohammad Ali of Pakistan and told him. nations do not always mean what they say. but we will see what happens in the end. Since. contention. We are going to have problems with India. wants to be G1.Number One power in Asia – it is an understandable ambition. The time to watch in any period in history is when new powers are rising. The objective is to confine and box India in South Asia. It’s a big country. you have problems with India. This is also an understandable ambition. requiring new adjustments. instability. my mind goes back to mid 1950’s when Jawahar Lal Nehru was vigorously propagating the idea of ‘India-China Bhai-Bhai’ at Bandung. I mean they have this objective. “We have very serious problems with India.

China’s moves in the power game for example are efforts that are meant to undermine India’s deep. But we have to understand China’s economic rise and military strengthening.China’s intervention in Korea. I think that applies to China of today as it applies to china of yore. In the case of India. China will pursue its National interest. first thirty years after 1950. National policies of governments in power are geared to one basic objective. provided we prepare ourselves for any kind of eventuality. in Asia. We will have to deal with that. Japan and South Korea to name a few. China’s war on Vietnam. China’s war with India in 1962. China is a challenge in strategic terms. . One hopes that history will not be repeated. but conflict will arise when it seeks to pursue its National interest at the expense of or trespassing the National interest of other major countries in the region – Russia. We had a study done on this subject in the Observers Research Foundation (ORF) and we came to a conclusion that Chinese want to increase their military strength because they want economic expansion. India. It was also a period of several wars . hopefully not in the military terms in the long run. the China-Pakistan alliance and the military cooperation between the two countries contributes to prolonging the avoidable and unnecessary confrontation between India and Pakistan. I think in today’s World. I think that prosperity will spread around in the neighbourhood. At the same time we would not like to come in conflict with China. If China grows prosperous. was the period of consolidation of revolutionary achievements. China’s skirmishes with Russia. We want a relationship of friendship with China – economic and commercial cooperation. geographic and cultural relations with that country. But there is an opportunity. Peaceful economic rise and military modernisation go hand in hand – one reinforcing the other. close historic. ‘Promotion of the National interest’. What I am saying is stated very clearly by the Chinese ‘policy makers’.74 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 During China’s revolution and stabilisation.

especially between two large countries.RISE OF CHINA 75 My only concern is that in the present pursuit of multi-polarity or poly centricity. I hope that will not be the story. We are not in competition with China. I thank all the Panellists. If this continues. unprofitable assertiveness vis-à-vis India will only give rise to tension. as it was fifty years ago or hundred years ago or several centuries ago. It is no longer ‘a land of mystery’. China today is an open country. I hope that there will be many more such interactions in future. I think it was stated very clearly that China is number one in economic and military terms and it will remain so for many years to come. through daily pin pricks. but tensions in Asia are not a happy development. it will bring no gain to it. but any kind of avoidable. If China’s rise is entirely peaceful. This is going to remain. But if China continues to assert itself militarily. Tension may not lead to conflict hopefully. Our commercial and business leaders are also becoming interested in China and I appreciate very much that USI has organised this Seminar. which is totally unnecessary and avoidable. Thank you. Sometimes the underlying objectives are not very clear but a closer study of what they say in words does reveal their objectives. then there is bound to be tension. not just in the world. but within Asia also multi-polarity exists today. It is a good thing that our scholars like Professor Kondapalli (and others) and former diplomats are engaged in the study of China. everybody will want to be friends with China. “China’s assertiveness – I don’t know why China feels it is necessary?” There is this assertiveness in relation to India and towards Japan. . We wish China well. I thank personally General PK Singh for associating me with this particular Session. Our Prime Minister in his own very moderate and modest language said. China states its policies very clearly. China will not ignore that. unnecessary.

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USA Professor Aileen Baviera.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER SECOND SESSION Chairman Vice Adm KK Nayyar. PVSM. University of the Philippines. Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton. IPS (Retd) First Paper Second Paper Third Paper Fourth Paper Discussion . Shri Jayadeva Ranade. Centre for Policy Initiatives Ms Bethany Danyluk.AVSM (Retd) Former Vice Chief of Naval Staff Shri Mohan Guruswamy.

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But the serious demeanour of Chinese has not given us hope of many opportunities in the offing. I wonder whether we have not been generous in saying ‘opportunities’ in the title of this seminar. But having said that. and opportunities if they see any. alright. this afternoon. I always take the post lunch attendees in these seminars as people who are seriously wedded to the subject. AVSM (Retd) Former Vice Chief of Naval Staff Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. That perhaps explains the overkill of five or six seminars in a period of less than 10 days in Delhi on China. . We are very lucky to have this distinguished panel to deal with the challenges. we should take very seriously what the Chinese do and say. because there is ‘strategic challenge’. PVSM. Many years ago. I do hope that the climate changes and may be some opportunities would also arise. There is no other way to describe the bellicose statements which have emanated officially and semi-officially from Beijing. 20 ft high and then carried on building it for 1900 years. while speaking at RAND in Santa Monica I was questioned that some of my facts were not right.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 79 Session II : Chairman’s Opening Remarks Vice Admiral KK Nayyar. then we ought to be taking anything which they said and did very seriously. Therefore. 20 ft wide. What I had said was that if a country 2200 years ago decided to build a wall 6000 km long.

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he would say that because our growth rates have not been too good compared to China. Growth rate by itself.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 81 Session II : First Paper Shri Mohan Guruswamy There is tremendous economic activity going around all over the world. we get very excited. Only the European Union (EU) has been able to make some inroads into it. Naturally. But even after making allowances for various factors. 27 per cent in Euro. When we grow at 7 per cent. Next is Euro which is about 27 per cent. as our Prime Minister said. Dollar is pretty much the king and whoever has to live in this world has to factor that into account. British Pound. Even they could not do very much. As a matter of fact there are 63 countries today in the world which are growing at over 6 per cent. some unlikely countries like Ethiopia are growing at 11 per cent. In terms of actual current percentages – 64 per cent of reserves were in US Dollar in 2008. is not the entire game. Whatever we say and do. The important thing is that the world is changing rapidly. how do we keep our foreign exchange reserves? Bulk of our reserves are kept in Dollars. which arrived after World War II.6 per cent. Please note that out of 63 other countries that are growing over 6 per cent. The fastest growing country in the world is Bhutan which is growing at 24. Japanese Yen and Swiss . rest do not matter – German Mark. our money is kept in Western institutions. Many countries have tried to breach this monopoly of the Dollar. That is because the EU as a whole has a GDP which is more than the USA. Coming to the main part of my talk. I would say that 6 per cent growth rate is no big deal anymore because developing world is growing at that pace.

advanced military equipment etc. Every second country in the world has trade surplus . That is the real index of power not how many ships you have. particularly in the USA in the form of US securities has created the first major challenge to what seemed an unimpeded rise to dominant status in the world. Though this advantage has narrowed but they are still way ahead. aerospace. rest of our economies do well.82 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Franc. if you take this projection upto the next 50 years i. China has a trade surplus of almost $ 400 billion. We would like to keep our money in Swiss banks but in Dollars and others upto 2 per cent. China’s tax revenue per capita today is about $ 330. It is now caught in a deadly economic embrace with the USA – akin to Siamese twins. to 2060. What would happen to China if it did not have this trade surplus? There will be a hole in China’s GDP which it cannot fill. amounting to 3 per cent only. That is why the world does well because they have a trade deficit of $ 847 billion with the USA. It is the engine of the world’s economy – it is the driver of the world’s economy. They are there to stay for quite some time to come. India has a trade surplus with the USA. That is why USA is the most important country in the world in economic terms. the US will still be number one spender with per capita income close to $ 100. at least in this Century.000 – that will give them per capita tax revenue of about $ 25000. Even. medicine.e. The USA will continue to be. They are in the forefront of technological advances in the world – computers. the foremost economic power in the world. So. How much money does a State have to spend? The size of per capita income of the USA is $ 46. as China and India rise. Ironically. nobody is holding money in any other currency. how many guns you have. We are pretty dependent on the US to keep this growth rate going.000. To think that the end of the US has come is a little premature. China’s unprecedented economic rise and huge accumulation of wealth overseas. out of which $ 303 billion worth is with the USA. Because the US consumes so much. India’s about $ 120 – the USA’s is $ 8800.

Boeing alone is exporting about 30 per cent.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 83 with the USA. These days wherever you meet people from Asia they talk of transfer of power coming towards Asia. those who think that an end of the era has come. Look what happened after that? You had budgetary deficit.e. Australia. when you have only one or two buyers. Why is the USA in trouble? When George Walker Bush took over. The number of countries who have a trade deficit with the USA is just a handful because they are quite ridiculously ill managed economies to have a trade deficit with the USA. but when you have only one or two buyers it is equally dangerous. He left them with a surplus.8 trillion. the US economy had a budget surplus of about $ 100 billion. A monopoly is when you have only one manufacturer. Belgium. aircraft and telecommunications amount to 49 per cent of their exports. the trade scenario in the USA is that they have current balance of $ 800 billion – adverse. except countries like the UAE. The annual accrual here is huge. What are they buying from the Chinese? They are buying cheap electrical machinery. trade deficit – all just kept going up. Almost all countries have got trade surpluses with the USA. but 2 per cent on $ 14 trillion is not the same as 10 per cent on $ 1 trillion. This is how big the USA is – out of the total world GDP of about $ 56 trillion. They have exports of 1. the US is $ 14 trillion. are again making a big mistake. The power of monopsony i. Hong Kong. There is a new kind of power building up in the world. nor 11 per cent on $ 2. As a matter of fact the USA imports $ 12 billion worth of Chinese shoes every year. The USA has arrived at a monopsonous position on many articles with China. Mr Obama had to pick up the reigns from here and he has barely been able to control the situation. That is what Bill Clinton left him because he was managing the economy well. and it is a . So.15 per cent. While they export these to all the countries. fans and other small things like apparel. Presently. Their GDP is growing at 2 per cent. they import from China 17 per cent. There is a big difference. If you look at their exports. Why do they import from China? We will come to that.

smart power is not going to work because everything is working because of a hole in Uncle Sam’s trade balance.6 per cent. So they are monopoly suppliers and monopsnous buyers. There is a moral there – if the US health gets better. Amongst China’s top trading partners. If that gets closer. everything comes from China. it is $ 400 million per piece. China’s trade with the USA is growing. This quarter it dropped 13. In 10 years it has gone up almost eight to ten folds. China’s soft power. But the USA is right at the top. Amongst the world’s top exporters. hard power. China’s health gets bad. That is the cause of China’s troubles. If you want to buy Intel chips. The USA exports amount to $ 72 billion and imports to $ 338 billion. Again it is picking up and it will . China would get squeezed. Germany is No. they are very comfortably placed economically. When you get those economies of scale you can pretty much do what you want with other markets.84 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 monopoly supplier of many ‘leading technology’ articles. Chinese lost 22 million jobs since the slowdown of the world economy. I cannot see how you are going to recover without the USA becoming profligate again. Exports are dropping at the rate of 10-12 per cent per quarter. and then it dropped. The Chinese are exporting with those economies of scale all over the world. So.1 per cent. If you want to buy a Boeing plane. Therefore. If you go to the market in India today. before coming to a halt. the USA and Japan. then. China’s trade with the world has led to the remarkable rise of China. they will decide the price. touched almost 4 per cent in 2008. we are somewhere at No 11. So. The world economy is growing fast. Every year percentage change kept going up till 2008.1. These are the big export players in the world. If USA’s exports and imports figures get more and more balanced. you are in deep trouble. It was 3. The USA gives you a large market so you get economies of scale. Now in India we have a bilateral trade of 55 billion $ with China and Chinese have a trade balance of $ 12 billion in their favour. it is China.

China is going to do 5. The excitement in the world is all about future growth. Asia leads the world in growth. as a different source of power to challenge the US hegemony and the Dollar. But Asia consists of Japan which is not very fond of China. it can challenge the Dollar but not till then. they do not really factor – Japan. Are they going to start putting money in Yuan or Yen. Russia. That possibility is now beginning to dawn on the world. But the window of opportunity starts to open up very soon. India’s growth rates will be more than China’s.8 per cent. Goldman Sachs said. UK. ASEAN which is very suspicious of China.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 85 keep rising. it consists of India also not very fond of China. Actually India is sitting on the verge of a far greater growth opportunity than China is. BRICs is being favoured as a new power. They are stashing away money abroad. and then we do not like each other very much. as a stabilising instrument. If Asia unites together to get a common currency. +2 per cent trajectory we said is very difficult. Prime Minister is already talking . Russia. The Chinese are very keen on exploring BRICs as an alternate source. The Goldman Sachs have predicted future growths for India. And we are already on the +2 per cent trajectory. In this Asia is growing fastest. Whether we handle our economy well is another thing. The rest are pretty much there. when they say they are going to do 9 per cent.8 per cent. in Swiss Banks. Asia’s share of world GDP exceeds EU. If you add 2 per cent you are well past China by 2030. India. very optimistic but we are already doing it. As a matter of fact. very unlikely. the USA and rest of the world. Germany and France. the USA and China. Britain. we are doing 7. As a matter of fact next year and the year afterwards. we will be doing 11 per cent. This era is one of fast economic growth for the developing world. In BRICs India has the highest potential. As this period goes we will be growing two per cent more than China. China. if you do one per cent more then you actually overtake China in GDP terms in 2040 or so. but. In the recent days there is much talk of BRICs – Brazil. because there is a demographic push coming in for India’s growth rate. then may be.

It should take control of the IMF to ensure closer monitoring of members with the mandate of having balanced trade in accordance with Brettonwood Compact prescriptions. This is a possibility. in own currencies. One needs to sell the dope. If China slows down. This is a symbiotic relationship. . But. China-IndiaJapan as one economic block. As a matter of fact the US economists describe their relationship as one between that of a drug addict and a drug peddler. Otherwise this means. the other keeps consuming it – I describe them as Siamese twins. China is already doing it with Brazil. Suppose I trade with China.86 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 about 11 and I see that is possible. we hold our own currency as reserves against each other. the US lives within its means. In the rapidly changing world. (e) Then you might have ASEAN. (c) Force the revaluation of the Yuan. China slows down. curbing dollarisation of the world. Why not? European Union is already there. (d) BRICs bilateral trading. In this situation. Both are fighting and shouting at each other but have to eat at the same time because they have one stomach. (f) G 20 is the IMF.e. economic blocks i. whether we are going to have equitable growth. joined together with different personalities. a new world order is emerging. (b) Balance its budget and trade with China. it might challenge dollarisation. or a dope addict and a dope peddler. China buys and pays me in Yuan and I pay them back in Rupee. But suppose we start doing it on a larger scale. We have the same currency. increasing special drawing rights (SDR’s). how does the world get off the Tiger? The obvious answers are: If the USA lives within its means. If the USA has to live within its means: (a) It has to pull out of these wars. a balanced growth !! I do not know.

I do not think Hu Jintao is going to do it. the bleeding is going to start again and we would be in bad trouble. Both of them have got good economists who studied in each other’s universities. The next time it bleeds it will bleed down. ‘balance or perish’. It can check bleeding for a little while. If you want to get back to normalcy you have to balance your budgets. But if you do not balance your trade. Today. the world is a patient with a big deep wound and Mr Obama is applying band aid to it. and your trade. both China and the USA breached the Brettonwoods Compact which talked about having balanced trade. do not slow the Chinese down.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 87 Why did this imbalance take place? Because. . you don’t balance your books. But who will bell the big cat? I do not think Dr Manmohan Singh is going to do it. yet they breached their Brettonwoods Compact. The slogan I give is. I do not think Obama is going to do it.

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In doing so. I am going to focus mainly on China’s use of soft power in the developing world and particularly in Africa and Latin America. But subsequent interpretations have expanded this definition somewhat and I will get to that in a moment but first I would like to read a short excerpt from Nigh in which he defines soft power by distinguishing it from hard power. “a state may achieve . I will conclude some perspectives on what China’s future soft power strategy might look like. I tried to break it down into its component parts and analyse these parts in a way that complements that of my fellow panel members. He says. what is soft power? As you probably are aware the term soft power was coined by the scholar Joseph Nigh in his book ‘The Changing Nature of American Power’ which was published in 1990.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 89 Session II : Second Paper Ms Bethany Danyluk China’s employment of soft power is an extremely broad topic and open to analysis through a number of different approaches. I will then talk about why China is using soft power primarily in the developing world and what is it hoping to achieve. First. I will start by introducing what soft power is and by clarifying my interpretation of soft power for the purposes of this conference. Finally. After that I will briefly assess the extent to which China’s soft power has been successful in achieving its national objectives and move on to a discussion on the implications of China’s employment of soft power for the rest of the world and also for China itself.

economic engagement refers to interactions with other states in terms of trade. I want to use the definition of soft power that is broad enough to include the important economic dimension but restrictive enough to adhere to Nigh’s original principles.90 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 the outcomes it prefers in world power stakes because other states want to follow it or have agreed to a situation that produces such effect. . Josh Kurlantzick.” Nigh then goes on to point out the three sources of soft power – culture. the Middle East. might be called cooptive or soft power in contrast with the harder command power of ordering others to do it at once. The dominating theme of the panel questions derive from the economic question surrounding China’s use of soft power. So. and other incentives and these last three usually intertwine and are often hardly distinguished from each other. So. ideology and institutions. a renowned scholar at the Carnegie Endowment in Washington. This brings me to the four specific tools that I will be talking about as China uses them for soft power purposes. South and Central Asia and Latin America. The second aspect of power which occurs when one country gets other countries to want what it wants. But I don’t want to do that to the exclusion of the other factors. So. I submit to you that this definition applies in the context of other regions as well. including Africa. authored the book ‘China’s Charm Offensive’ and wrote in 2006 that today in the Asian context. As scholars have continued to develop this theory an expanded definition of soft power has taken shape to include a d d i t i o n a l c o m p o n e n ts s u c h a s e c o n o m i c s a n d d i p l o m a t i c engagement. In this sense it is just as important to set the agenda and structure the situations in world politics as to get others to change in particular cases. I think it is safe to say that we can invoke this expanded definition for the purposes of this conference panel. First. soft power is understood to imply all elements outside the security realm including investment aid. investment and aid.

China advocates multi-polarity which implies a world in which the USA is no longer the global hegemon. sport events. Third. while China is modernising its military as we are all aware it is also focussing on the other side of the equation. So. So. dissemination of culture includes sponsorship of cultural. Juxtaposed with the success of the US policies at the height of American appeal . education initiatives to promote Chinese language and culture. And fourth. Second. Along the way China has several intermediate goals aimed at promoting a peaceful environment that will not interfere with China’s development. This describes China’s use of regional or global organisations to shape behaviour and outcomes in ways that promote its interests. Fourth. First and foremost. participation in multilateral institutions. China hopes to gain political support from other countries to back its positions in international institutions. why is China using soft power? China is pursuing a national strategy to increase its comprehensive national power which includes both hard and soft components.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 91 Second is public diplomacy characterised by how China basically advertises itself or what I will refer to as its public relations (PR) campaign that also includes visits and exchanges by leaders and delegations from other countries and symbolic agreements that are usually intended to demonstrate how successful these visits and exchanges are. Third. China needs to look outward for energy and raw materials to sustain its high levels of growth and this goal is particularly important because economic growth is the key of the legitimacy of the regime and failure to sustain this growth would portend instability in China. It also includes use of Chinese media to promote its image and increase tourism. and the Chinese diaspora itself. Then another reason for China’s increasing use of soft power is that China’s employment of hard power strategies have not been particularly effective over the past few decades. it wants to protect territorial sovereignty which describes its pursuit of the One China Policy.

trade. . China’s status as a permanent member of the UN Security Council places it in a position to veto resolutions that undermine its interests as well as shape efforts at future reform. China aims to promote a harmonious world in which relationships are based on friendship. would now be the order of business. So. growing concerns among other actors with respect to China’s military modernisation have encouraged Chinese leadership to emphasise more benign manifestations of its foreign policies. Finally. casting its rise as non-threatening is particularly important to China and it is taking care to emphasise several themes designed to reinforce this point. Economic engagement. I am just going to touch on these. So. This is actually part of its PR strategy that will be described later but I decided to introduce it here because it provides a helpful framework for thinking about the other elements of soft power. China simply turned and changed policy offering assistance and wanting friends wooing. Relationships with China are win-win characterised by mutual benefits. China’s investments are aimed at developing energy and natural resources and infrastructure which is actually designed to facilitate its own acquisition of supplies to fuel its economy. not intimidating. increasing trading relations have made China and developing countries increasingly inter-dependent on each other. Seeing this. China uses multilateral institutions to strengthen its international image. investment aid. equality and mutual respect. China maintains a policy of non-interference in State’s domestic affairs. first China is pursuing a strategy of peaceful development that is benign in nature and not aimed at any particular country. build legitimacy and credibility and show that it is interested in being a responsible stakeholder. Let us look at China’s soft power tools in a bit more detail.92 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 internationally China realised that it was necessary to look for new ways to achieve its goal.

Only 23 countries remain which have official relations with Taiwan and experts have noted that developing countries are increasingly considering China’s reactions when . China also uses public diplomacy. It has got very populous diaspora across the world. how successful has China been in using soft power? There is no question that China has been somewhat successful in building and leveraging soft power in developing nations in pursuit of its overarching objectives. especially in developing countries. China has been able to increase its access to energy and raw materials overseas and to diversify the sources of these supplies. China is also a founding member of groupings such as the SCO and the BRIC nations. and exchanges between not only high level officials and delegations but lower level engagements with politicians. While public diplomacy is designed to court elites. spends a lot of time on public relations to advertise its development as peaceful and good for the world and it maintains a full diplomatic agenda conducting visits.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 93 It is also a member of the regional institutions which allows it a role in shaping the objectives of these organisations. political parties and interest groups. So. cultural diplomacy aims to advertise China to foreign public and to provide tangible evidence of China’s goodwill. it has also developed computer institutes which are institutes that facilitate the global reach of Chinese culture and language. and also uses media and tourism. and the China-Africa Forum which aim to balance the US influence and/or provide alternatives to engagement with the United States that are more focused on the interests of rising actors. So. Cultural Diplomacy. These visits and exchanges are often accompanied by symbolic agreements and China has also been placing increasing emphasis on developing its diplomatic corps. has tried to make it easier for foreign students to study in China. as I mentioned China sponsored cultural and sporting events.

In the past. It is actually an excerpt from a recent request for proposal issued by the US Agency for International Development to solicit contractor support for food and enterprise development programme in Liberia.94 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 making decisions about their domestic affairs. resentment is building among the public in response to what they view China as a neo-colonial and exploitative practices.” Because of China’s growing influence in Africa it is fuelling economic . It describes the guiding principles for the programme. Assessments from several years ago often cited results of respected opinion polls such as the PU Global Attitudes Report and the Chicago Council as indicators of China’s success in soft power strategy. in Africa and Latin America where China is popular among the elites. It is also unclear how valuable Chinese soft power has been in the UN. Latin American businesses are increasingly having to compete for market share of Chinese manufactured goods which are often sold below the market value. Several factors however suggest that China’s success might not be sustainable over the long term. Liberia and Embassy of China are actively working to address opportune partnerships. Investment projects are not translating into as many employment opportunities for local populations because China is importing its own workers and when it does employ local populations they often face sub-par conditions and low wages. “Pursue opportunities to collaborate with China: USAID. This is a practical example of my experience with how China’s soft power has been successful. I will read you the 7 th guideline. it has vetoed resolutions intended to isolate countries in which China has interests but more recently it has begun to support resolutions by condemning human rights abuses in places like Burma and Sudan. Finally. China also tends to export its environmental practices creating further source of backlash. More recent findings of these polls however reflect a decrease in China’s popularity and increasing negative perceptions among other countries.

Chinese economy as we know is growing rapidly but it lacks the infrastructure to support the pace and capacity of this growth. We should also consider the implications of China’s use of soft power for China itself. it also makes China more vulnerable in several areas. First. helping the developing economies to stay afloat during the time of global recession. Despite China’s statements that it does not have aspirations for a leadership role in the international community it could be . These are just a few of the implications that the rest of the world must consider and it is difficult to determine whether the good outweighs the bad because we don’t know China’s intentions are. But as Jasjit Singh pointed out in the beginning of the conference. China’s participation in multilateral institutions means further integration with the international community which will hopefully lead to greater accountability and expectations of compliance with international norms. its investment support is badly needed in infrastructure and it is helping to establish it as a responsible stakeholder in international affairs which other countries are hoping to leverage to achieve the outcomes of mutual interest such as stabilising the global economy and reining in North Korea. resources being spent for developing soft power assets have receded means. s o m e consequences of China’s soft power activities support outcomes that create a pretext for instability by undermining international norms and institutions empowering rogue or corrupt regimes and building a foundation that could support increased uses of hard power in future. Furthermore.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 95 growth. may be it is not necessary that has to be an either/or situation and we can be prepared to embrace the good and work together to achieve common interests for devising strategies to deal with the challenges. there are fewer resources to devote to China’s own internal development. Beyond the previously discussed benefits of the strategy in meeting China’s national objectives. A l t e r n a t i v e l y.

Then. Some argue that its use of soft power has been largely ad hoc and opportunistic and does not reflect a well thought out and planned approach. much like what happened to the US following the exposure of Abu Gharaib and enhanced interrogation techniques. Experts hold competing views of whether China has an actual soft power strategy. States already look to China to leverage its influence on issues of mutual interest and likely to pressure China to assume responsibilities in either ones. but just based on recent literature here is what I have to say. So. I think this is already taking place in the case of bringing to light the situation of weaker population. I will conclude with a look at perhaps what the future of the China soft power looks like which is quite intimidating with my Chinese colleagues in the audience because I don’t presume to know more than they do. China is likely to draw more scrutiny from the international community placing increased emphasis on its record of human rights. Others however contend that China has a strategy for everything so there is no possibility that this could not be part of their strategy. As the Chinese presence and profile grow. I would imagine that up until a few years ago. the average American following of current events had no idea of what a veto was and now it has been in the news. the point to be made here is that the benefits China derives from successful employment of soft power are accompanied by costs that should not be ignored. environmental practices and domestic weaknesses. the prospects of instability are serious and far reaching. Increased awareness of the Chinese dark side could tarnish its image and would neutralise or reverse the soft power successes that it has had. either by China or the international community because countries have an interest in promoting stability in China. not for ones it is prepared. But regardless of its .96 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 compelled to assume one beyond the need to protect its own foreign interests.

getting something accomplished”. if it isn’t already. So. maritime piracy and drug trafficking. Over the past few decades China has followed Deng Xiaoping’s approach to foreign policy characterised by the phrase. “keep a low profile and bide your time while also getting something accomplished”. The dynamics of the conference implied the intention to pursue more active foreign policy. The functional diplomacy seems to me as basically a description of collective security or security cooperation . They include: China should be a more influential power in politics. more competitive in the economic field. should have more affinity in its image and be a more appealing force in morality. President Hu specifically emphasised the importance of the role of soft power in Chinese foreign policy. China is moving away from a ‘pull’ approach by which a country is able to convince other countries to want what it wants to the ‘push’ approach where a country actually uses its political influence to compel other countries to do what it wants. “Uphold keeping a low profile and biding our time more actively.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 97 current state there have been indications that China is ready to pursue a strategic approach to its use of soft power. Chinese leadership subsequently affirmed this shift when Premier Wen Jiabao advocated for a new focus on what he called functional diplomacy. This approach is characterised by more involvement in cooperative structures that address the challenges such as climate change. As I thought about this idea it has become clear that this approach will inevitably blur the lines even further between soft and hard power. The documents from the July conference reveal a slightly nuanced version of the principle described as. He then laid out four goals that China should strive to further its foreign policy which subsequently became to be known as four strengths. I think you can see that the soft power characteristics of the four strengths are evident. Several themes emerge from the July 2009 Ambassadorial Conference that was attended by China’s foreign policy leaders. First.

How does the increasing intersection or ambiguity between hard and soft power. and China’s foreign policy change the way we think about the future security environment and whether China is an opportunity or a challenge? . This raises the question for further consideration and debate. Think about China’s recent anti-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia.98 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 and the challenges to be addressed clearly require the use of military capabilities.

My presentation is going to be a preliminary exploration of the following questions. you might say that the South East Asian countries do have some shared concerns about the rise of China and as a consequence also about the role of China as a new regional and global power. so it is difficult to generalise South East Asia in that sense. Nonetheless through years of our community building and relating to each other and gradually harmonising our foreign policy attitudes. Just as China’s attitudes and policies in South East Asian countries also may have some differences between them. diverse in many ways including in its responses and actions towards China. if not foreign policy itself. exploring this subject matter: Has China’s influence really grown that much. First of all. In terms of soft power China’s influence in South East Asia has often been said to have grown rapidly in recent years and in fact in the last few years there have been a number of scholars from the US and Japan also coming to South East Asian countries. In what specific areas of soft power has China’s influence been observed to grow in South East Asia? What factors might occur for such trends and will this influence be at the expense of other powers? .CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 99 Session II : Third Paper Professor Aileen Baviera My brief this afternoon is to talk to you about China’s soft power in South East Asia. it is considered an important subject. I need to begin with a caveat that South East Asia is a very diverse region. to what extent has this taken place and is it going to be at the expense of the US and Japanese influence specifically? So.

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Bethany has already given a definition of soft power. Let me just reiterate very briefly that in my study I looked at the elements of soft power as inclusive of culture, economics, human capital, diplomacy and politics. My conclusion which I would like to state at the outset is that China’s soft power diplomacy has been most effective in the economic and the diplomacy arena but not as effective and may have very little impact as far as culture, human capital and politics is concerned in the South East Asian region. Why has China’s diplomacy been so successful in South East Asia? There are a number of milestones to this. Perhaps, the most pronounced and some of you may remember that up to the mid-90s there was a lot of suspicion among the South East Asian states about China, particularly actions that China had taken in the South China Sea as well as across the Taiwan straits. It is very significant that in the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis China was ready and generous with its assistance to the specific South East Asian countries that were most affected while other powers or other international financial institutions were not quite ready to come to the assistance of these countries. So, the perception of China as a responsible stakeholder, as a partner for regional development and stability really grew as a consequence of the Asian financial crisis. China did not only provide aid assistance but played an active role in the Chiang Mai currency swap initiatives and also supplying some credit for helping the regional economies by not devaluing the renminbi. As of now, all South East Asian countries enjoy a trade surplus with China which is considered an advantage to them. In the concerns running up to China’s membership in the WTO, when most South East Asian countries were afraid that this would result in a lot of diversion of trade to China rather than South East Asia, China took the initiative to offer the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area which was intended to reassure the South East Asian economies that they could participate just as well in the prosperity of China. There were many add-ons to this programme such as the early

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harvest programme giving advantages to the least developed economies of South East Asia. In other words, as far as its economic initiatives towards ASEAN or South East Asian countries were concerned, China was able to project itself as a responsible stakeholder and an economic leader. On other initiatives, China was the first to sign on to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in South East Asia when other great powers were still reticent about this, it entered into strategic partnership not only with the ASEAN as a whole but with each individual country. Some of the strategic partnership agreements had defence cooperation elements to them indicating how much had changed by way of the perceptions of China’s security role in the region. There was a lot of bilateral assistance particularly to Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar and the message of this high level political agreements also was that China was prepared to commit long term to the peace and stability of the region and that it conceived itself as shaping the destiny of South East Asia. There was also a Declaration of Conduct in the South China Sea that was signed by China and ASEAN which on China’s side was intended to demonstrate that it could have a reasonable and flexible approach from its earlier insistence on dealing with these territorial issues bilaterally towards a multilateral dialogue on this issue, though it is also observed that in more recent times China has been backtracking in fact from the multilateral discussions on territory and reverting back to bilateral discussions. There were energy cooperation agreements with a number of countries. I think most of all China has consistently stated its strong support for the central role that ASEAN plays in regional community building initiatives and has participated actively in multilateral regimes and institutions in the East Asian region which includes ASEAN+3, the ASEAN Regional Forum, the East Asia Summit, all ASEAN RIM and ASEAN centred arrangements as well as of course APEC. Through its participation in this ASEAN RIM and regional arrangements China’s message has been that it is against hegemony, it is inclusive based and it distinguishes itself from the unilateralist approach of other powers, primarily the USA and Japan.

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So, while this successful diplomacy and the charm offensive were taking place, there were other factors that aided primarily the low credibility of the US in South East Asia. At the time, following successive government’s apparent disinterest in the region, the post-9/11 unilateralist policies of the Bush government and the military approach to terrorism were not received well in South East Asia – where we have predominantly Muslim states in Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei and significant minorities in Thailand and Philippines. The military approach to terrorism post 9/11 antagonised many republics in the region. So, you can see the declining popularity of the USA and the increasing popularity and influence of China. Japan’s continued economic woes may have been a factor although it must also be said that Japan by far still remains the major economic partner as far as the great powers go and its influence is not always politically communicated. But it is very much part of the regional and national economies and it will be there to stay. Then there is also a media treatment of China’s economic success stories all over which helps create a positive attitude towards China in the region. In the economic and diplomatic initiatives this has been quite successful. Is China’s cultural soft power growing? Perhaps, among the ethnic Chinese in South East Asia this may be said to be true. There is interest in learning the Chinese language and the culture especially among second/ third generation ethnic Chinese, who have very little roots to China as the motherland – but not much beyond ethnic Chinese communities. You will understand that there have always been important Chinese communities in these countries. Chinese culture is neither new nor exotic or exciting. We are very familiar with Chinese culture. China’s rise does have a cultural element but I believe it has minimal impact on the countries of the region. In comparison when you look at young people they are probably more attracted to the Japanese and Korean pop culture. There is much admiration for high Chinese culture, cinema for instance, as well as China’s achievements in science and technology of late. A lot of bad media coverage on its tainted products is also affecting opinion of China, like in

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the Philippines for instance, where many of the Chinese imports available in supermarkets are considered of inferior quality. If not due to anything else but the traders themselves are going for the cheaper goods not necessarily the best quality ones. While you have the prospect of a rising China militarily and economically, on the other hand, the level of exposure among the ordinary people also projects a negative sign to China’s economic rise. Is the attraction of Chinese politics growing in South East Asia? There was a time in the late 1980s and 90s when we had this debate about Asian values and how human rights would be differently interpreted in East Asia and the so called Confucian societies as compared to the West. During that time you might say there was some attraction to a Confucian kind of politics and how development should not take place in democracy as far as the aspirations of the people of the region are concerned, but since then we have seen an increasing liberalisation of politics in South East Asia – the democratisation of Indonesia following fall of Suharto, in Thailand, in the Philippines. Even growing civil society role in Malaysia for instance would tend to an outcome where the kind of politics that China represents, authoritarian centralised politics, top-down decisions would not be considered attractive any more. So, among intellectuals for instance, if you talk about China it just does not have the same kind of attraction as it may have had in the late 1950s because of the internal developments in the region itself. Possible exception would be I suppose Singapore. Because of antipathy to one party system in the region you will see multiparty systems and political reforms taking place. Another negative projection of China is its involvement in corruption scandals in some of these countries. In Philippines for instance what would have been major big ticket investment projects became mired in allegations of corruption and had to be withdrawn or suspended. So, this also does not give good publicity or promotion to China.

Some of the new migrants are not even supported by the earlier migrants from China because they end up in business competition with each other. even with the Japanese soft power in the South East Asian region – much less with western soft power. The South East Asian countries are very much engaged with . fears growing dependency. academics. But in the case of the Philippines. So. Can China’s soft power influence the behaviour of other states – independent of these States’ perceptions of hard power? I think the exercise of soft power on the part of China has not at all led to the abandonment of hard power as an instrument. But because of the principle of using force in itself. while the China’s soft power does have an impact in terms of its diplomacy and economic influence.104 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 In terms of China’s human capital. All the governments have committed to a one China policy. Some of the new migrants become involved in illegal activities such as drug trafficking and this gets a lot of media attention again – projecting a negative image of the country. there are issues among the old and new migrants. Even Myanmar. if you like. So. Economic domination remains the concern of our specific industry sectors within South East Asia. when ASEAN in their collective ethics have spoken out very much in favour of peaceful settlement of disputes and non-military approach to conflicts in the region. That also gives a different image when we talk about Chinese power. we see continued Chinese migration of low skilled workers. despite the rise of China and its improving economy there are still significant numbers of Chinese who migrate and take low level jobs or end up as street sellers. In South East Asia there continues to be concerns about China’s military modernisation and its readiness to use force on the Taiwan issue. engineers. which is perceived to be closest to China in political and economic interests. in other areas it is not as successful and still has some way to go to compete. Singapore obviously has a policy of attracting highly skilled Chinese professionals. So. It is well known that New Delhi is also engaged in some balancing of sorts.

. the tendency to hedge against China’s rise persists. It is observed that increase in soft power is occurring at the expense of influence of other powers. China. Opportunities for hedging. such as the USA. The more China is engaged and the more China becomes a dominant player in South East Asia. because China’s policies are of a non-threatening nature and that there are more opportunities that can be built in developing good relations with China. Australia and New Zealand – possibly the US also but again that remains up in the air. China’s proactive stance has put pressure on the USA and Japan in their own dealings with South East Asia. the players of the ASEAN will work with other big players to remain engaged as well. But there is hedging taking place. It remains the policy of ASEAN to engage all great powers to balance each other and to prevent the rise of any regional hegemon among them. the indications are that they were reacting to China’s growing inroads in the region. many observers feel that this is not entirely about terrorism but there are some concerns about rising powers that come into the picture. Therefore. Japan and Korea has been a very successful initiative for well over 10 years with solid contributions to regional economic stability. We see this also in the regional community building efforts by the ASEAN+3 which includes South East Asia. Of course. where the focus on terrorism gave new life to cooperation with the USA. Still it was considered desirable by some major South East Asian countries to expand this into the East Asia Summit bringing in India. it was only after the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area that Japan began to consider entering into the same kind of arrangements with South East Asia and the same with the USA. For instance.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 105 China in a comprehensive way much more than at any time in the past but in this period where we have seen this growing engagement between China and South East Asia we have also seen increased hedging by the same countries. which means that there is a lot of increased confidence now. So. especially which came about after 9/ 11. At the same time the future role of China as a regional and global power still raises a lot of questions that remain unanswered. both economically and in the security arena.

Without diluting the suspicions about Chinese hard power including fear of using its economic leverage down the line.106 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 I will end with a small note. . it is doubtful whether China’s charm offensive alone would turn around perceptions on China from its immediate neighbours in South East Asia. By and large in South East Asia it is still largely hard power that rides the perceptions of China and not soft power.

CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 107 Session II : Fourth Paper Mr Jayadeva Ranade I am the last speaker to follow three very competent and distinguished panelists who have discussed this subject at length. The original concept was to find a way to overawe. influence or seduce the adversary into accepting the superiority of the initiating power without recourse to force. this concept of nonmilitary inducement has been around for many centuries and been enunciated by practitioners of state craft over the years in different regions and seen diverse applications. The two in fact are almost inter-changeable and the attributes of soft power are also intangible. we have had Chanakya and Sun Tzu both independently enunciating its fundamental principles. however. “Not only great powers but other countries can also develop soft power which could exert more influence than military force on global matters”. soft power was formalised in its present form by Harvard University Professor Joseph Nigh. He explained soft power to mean. but actually. To an extent it can be considered a derivative of psychological warfare. In this part of the globe. At the same time in my opinion. “A nation’s ability to obtain international interests by exhibiting its inner attractions”. music. He elaborated . language. They include a country’s culture. etc. As a modern concept. That principle remains valid till today. cuisine. In modern management parlance soft power would be akin to brand image. But I intend to use a broad brush analytical approach to discuss the application of soft power and cite a few examples on how China has actually used it. for example. soft power cannot be . The phrase ‘soft power’ appears to be contradictory.

Switzerland had projected itself as a safe and secure destination for storage of funds and bullion by individuals. It is geographically located on the periphery of world politics but has successfully converted its location into an asset. Two of the countries that I have selected are not major economic or military powers. This image directly benefits Switzerland because no country engaged in hostilities would want to jeopardise. neither do they wield great political influence in world affairs and yet they have carved out a niche for themselves in international affairs solely on the basis of the method of application of soft power. Again a small country approximately 500. by following studied neutrality (a principle . Norway has over the years sought to build an image of objectivity as a neutral mediator of conflicts and in the process again acquired an international stature bigger than it could normally hope for. I will quote three examples which ideally depict the application of soft power in present times. population of under five million. Yet.000 sq km mainly mountainous. In any case by acquiring this brand image. a small country with an area of slightly over 40000 sq km and a population of under seven million. It is portrayed that its distance from the vortex of international politics actually gives it the objectivity necessary to mediate in conflicts and bring about a resolution. Switzerland appeared to be destined to remain on the outer fringes of international affairs. The first country is Switzerland. This is not a classic example of application of soft power but it has inherent in it the idea contained in the original concept. The second example pertains to the use of soft power by a country in order to find a place for itself in international affairs that is Norway. scientific and technological power strongly. . even in very disturbed times. Switzerland has acquired for itself a stature higher than what it could normally hope to aspire for.it had no option but to adopt because of its size) symbolising the basis for a stable and sound economy.108 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 implemented unless it is backed by military. the safety of its own financial security or that of its governing elite by attacking Switzerland. Here. large corporations and countries.

The first attraction to people around the world was the economic opportunities afforded by the American economic strength and over the past couple of centuries this lured thousands of people from all over the world to the USA. This exodus of people into the USA and the money they sent home would have contributed to naming the US as ‘meco’.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 109 The USA is the final example and the concept of soft power as formulated by Joseph Nigh fits.5 to 2 billion dollars to Africa. it expanded its global reach to project its power. A substantive acknowledgement of the US soft power is that in Chinese the US is called ‘meco’ or a beautiful country. American music and most of all the ubiquitous Coca Cola. . It’s action appealed to the business and government elites in these countries and created a foothold for it. This was a combination of military. But China’s first concrete application of soft power was during the Asian Financial Crisis in 1997-98 when it did not devalue the Yuan despite pressure and took steps to assist the affected countries in the region. Chinese aid annually totals 1. scientific and technological strength. Many of us would recall that numerous Chinese workers were employed in construction of the rail roads and many more followed in their wake setting up small laundry and shoemaking businesses – and finally China Towns all across the USA. China’s aid to countries in Africa is another concrete example of China converting its economic strength to soft power to achieve its strategic and diplomatic goals. But China too has in recent years grasped the usefulness of soft power and decided to employ it in the pursuit of its goals. Military. I would not go into that aspect right now. This has been backed by teams of doctors sent from China. scientific and technological strength have played a major role as a number of countries sought to align themselves with the US for the benefits that could flow from proximity and USA’s wealth and global influence. As the USA gained in economic. Other more vivid examples of the American soft power familiar to people the world over are the Hollywood movies. diplomatic and soft power. military. scholarships to African students to study in China and projects that directly improve peoples’ lives like railways. The concept fits well with Confucian philosophy also and of other Chinese philosophers.

Accordingly. fulfilling Chinese President Hu Jintao’s offer in 2006 to double the quantum of assistance.110 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 dams and power stations alongwith training programmes for military personnel of African countries. It is estimated to touch 1. Culture. the Philippines. It has pursued a similar policy in South Asia where it has used a combination of circumstances to build influence. China today has considerable influence in the region. thanks also to its economically powerful and wealthy overseas Chinese community in these countries. foreign aid.2 trillion by 2010. It perceived that all the countries with contesting claims viewed China with suspicion and were trying to unite and oppose China. By the following year it had exceeded that of the USA. diplomacy. take up developmental projects and develop trade links.El-Sheikh earlier in November this year offered Africa an additional 10 billion dollars in concessional loans over the next 3 years. China began disbursing large sums of aid and assistance to the South East Asian countries. Africa as is well known is viewed by China as an abundant source of natural resources and soft power is being used here to achieve strategic goals. This is a region replete with potential flashpoints over territorial disputes and the presence of ethnic Chinese local overseas population. trade and investment were employed to soften popular and governmental suspicion of China as well as over shadow the US influence. It decided to use diplomacy reinforced by economic strength. It focussed on enhancing bilateral trade with the South East Asian nations to create a dependence on China’s huge economy and domestic market. Japan etc. China assessed that it would find it difficult to recover its claimed offshore territories in the face of resistance from countries like Vietnam. Primarily. it has been willing to extend fiscal assistance. thus. The other area of strategic and direct interest for China is South East Asia. By 2006 China’s over all trade with the region touched 160 billion US dollars. By 2010 China’s bilateral trade with South Asia is estimated to . In the early 1990s. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao at Sharm. Beijing decided to adopt a policy to coopt or soften each country individually.

There have been other efforts at use of soft power by China. China is also focussing on teaching people Chinese and estimates that 40 million people are learning Chinese today throughout the world. In October 2007 the application of soft power by China received a fillip when Chinese President Hu Jintao declared at the 17th Party Congress that China needed to enhance soft power since culture has . Another major effort at the use of soft power has been the launch of the programme to spread Chinese culture and the Chinese language. a sharp contrast to the findings of a survey five years earlier. It was decided to expand soft power through the Confucious Institutes and the first institute was set up in Tashkent in 2004. What has been the effect of this soft power effort? A 2007.7 billion viewers and was used as an opportunity to showcase China’s huge economy and its ability to successfully host possibly. Pu Research Poll confirms that China’s effort at using its strong economy as soft power to project a less threatening and benevolent image has yielded results. In addition. there was a slight shift in pattern. The largest public demonstration was the 2008 Olympic games. The US lagged behind except in the case of the Philippines which continued to be more wary of China. perhaps consequent to the aggressive actions at sea and another Pu survey found that negative feelings about China in South East Asia had increased. the world’s biggest event. In 2008. it has got involved in numerous infrastructure developmental projects that favourably project its image and earn good will. The survey found that 83 per cent of Malaysians and 65 per cent of Indonesians had favourable views of China. Its image was buttressed by the grand ceremonies which were choreographed with precision and its impressive medals tally.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 111 exceed well over a 100 billion dollars. By 2009 there were 328 Confucious Institutes the world over. as in the case of most of the other countries where it has strategic interests. however. These cost an estimated 70 billion US dollars and were telecast live to 4. The aim is to set up 500 Confucious institutes by 2010 and a 1000 by 2020.

It incrementally increased budgetary allocations for education and in 2009 the education budget totals 29 billion dollars. It is a long range move. medicine.. As part of this effort.5 million dollars in participating in the book exhibition at Frankfurt.000 overseas students studying in their universities. an amount of 6. For example.000 and 513. This is because the Chinese communist leadership. etc. perhaps. the English and Chinese editions of Global Times as subsidiaries of the party paper People’s Daily. But there is still substantial suspicion of China throughout the region and in fact in many parts of the world. has deep belief that ‘power flows from the barrel of a . China started targeting this by establishing top flight world class universities and then embarking on programmes promoting student exchanges. The State owned news agency Xinhua has plans to add more than 100 bureaus.6 billion dollars was earmarked for expansion of the media’s reach. To achieve the target of 500. The result has been the increase in transmissions and transmission time of CCTV channels and China International Radio broadcasts. Two new dailies have been added already. earlier this year in February it spent 7. culture. By way of comparison I may just mention that the US and the UK have about 624. art. The universities offer Chinese language. Education represents the ideal application of soft power as it directly targets the elite opinion forming segment of a country. there are 224.000 overseas students China has from this year enhanced the monthly living subsidies for undergraduate overseas students by 50 per cent and similarly for graduate and post graduate students.000 overseas students in China and by 2020 China hopes to have over 500. China has begun also exhibiting the size of its publishing industry by participating in international book fairs.112 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 become a factor of growing significance in the competition in overall national strength. Satellite communications are also being expanded with a view to acquiring dominance in the sector of satellite telecommunications and networking activities in the developing world. courses and scholarships to students to attract them.000 overseas students studying in Chinese universities. Today. namely.

The use of force at Tiananmen Square and more recently. In the context of Beijing’s efforts to allay the apprehensions of countries in the region that China continues to harbour aggressive designs the PLA Navy celebrations held in April 2009 only served to highlight its capabilities. To conclude. a 100.000 PLA personnel were deployed to ensure smooth performances at the games. I would paraphrase a remark I heard recently in this very context. to stop Tibetans escaping to Nepal over mountain passes or quell disturbances in Tibet and Xinxiang remind us of another side of China’s leadership.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 113 gun’. It signalled that the PLA Navy could and is preparing in the future to recover its claims in the off-shore territories. . “the people of the region listen carefully to the sound of hoof beats of the galloping horsemen of history and are unlikely to forget past Chinese behaviour”. Observers noticed that at the prestigious 2008 Olympic games the girl who actually sang the inaugural song was substituted on stage by another because the latter was better looking. Modernisation and strengthening of the PLA has in fact been a consistent theme of the Chinese ambition. Also. has not eschewed the use of military force and continues to rely heavily on the PLA.

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the net effect is that it is not clear what China’s intentions are. However. (b) It is agreed that Chinese performance in the UN Security Council and through ‘six party’ talks has improved the situation in Iran and Korea. World Bank etc. (c) Hard power lays the foundation for soft power because without the looming threat of hard power. development of ports. which attach reform conditions and minimal conditions for human rights etc. transportation and roads provide the foundation . it has perhaps undermined them through its policy of noninterference in the internal affairs of countries that have low standards for anti-corruption and do not support transparency and accountability in governance. Whereas. by engaging with them when other countries would not. China would not be able to exercise its soft power. if China did not pursue a policy of noninterference. Soft power in the form of infrastructure investments. However. empowers authoritarian regimes like Iran and Korea and lays the foundation for hard power? Responses (a) It is agreed that China has contributed to positive international standards and has acted as a responsible stake holder in many cases. since China empowers dictators in places like Sudan and Myanmar.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 115 Session II : Discussion Issue Raised How can you say that China’s soft power undermines international norms. these countries would probably still need to depend on western institutions like the IMF.

. Issue Raised With the ‘Rising China’. Why is the Chinese leadership not paying adequate attention to soft power and why is it focussed on building up economic strength and military power? Responses (a) It stems from the fact that in their priorities. (b) Another view was that there was no such thing as soft power. without which they feel they would not be able to move ahead. the ‘string of pearls’ theory. application of military strength is very important. In the minds of the Chinese leadership. because to raise living standards of the people domestically. It is not soft power.e. However.116 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 for setting up future military bases in those areas e. It is the influence of money and military power which is hard power. building up of economic power is most important.e. what happens is. To an extent they are correct. soft power would play a very important role in making China a good stake holder in international affairs. There is only one power and i.g. they do need to have a strong economy. it leads to bringing up the whole country to No 1 or No 2 position.if while building up of strong economy its orientation is towards having a strong military. its economic. It has two components – the economic component and the military component. In that case. It is projection of Comprehensive National Power. military and political power would also grow. The economic component is now being made to appear as soft power. Hence. soft power becomes number two and is used as an expedient to resolve a situation (temporarily). to bide time till the mainland China is strong enough to push in and resolve the problem the way they wanted to solve. hard power. i.

The Americans will then find some other place to buy their goods from. in African countries? (c) With the help of the American influence. There is no wisdom in doing so. It is . China is losing something like $400 billion a year by keeping this money in the US banks because of devaluation (12 per cent last year) and the dollar is likely to devalue further. somehow counter India’s growing economic power? Responses (a) Firstly. (d) A country which intends to rock the USA. ends up being in its clutches. (b) China is likely to pay the price for this. Suddenly. Sudden liquidation would reverse the value of dollar and progressively bring down the American monetary power. It is more than that. In recent history. nations like Iran and Japan have paid for piling reserves in the USA.g. what happened to baby food. Holding this kind of reserve is an economic folly. the Chinese reserves would be there. Can China use this power to : (a) Obtain from the USA various concessions? (b) Restrict competition in selected areas for China e.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 117 Issues Raised China is reputed to have foreign investment in terms of the US treasury bonds amounting to over One trillion dollars. (c) Ten years from now. dog food or toxic toys etc? The Chinese boat would be rocked again and again. To under estimate and write off the USA is another folly. Chinese foreign investments in US dollars amount to more than 1. It is like riding a tiger which you cannot get off. they would show the power of monopsony to China e.6 trillion.g.

Issue Raised Is there any chance of negotiated settlement of the border issue between India and China? Response The border issue is important. Anne Marie Slaughter. Since we have an unfinished problem with China. by seeking a state of parity or near parity vis-à-vis China. What would be the ramifications of the present day economic imbalances vis-à-vis the Chinese investments? How would the current portents play up in the coming decades. one has to be ready and only then can there be peace and stability. say. which makes it a smart power. Our military planners can take a lesson from the fact that whatever happens. in the next twenty years? Response This is not a fight between democracy and communism. China is following an authoritarian form of . We should not over estimate the role of this 1. capitalists thought of fighting Communism. the country tended to look outwards. Issues Raised In the Cold War era. We need to be ready to face the problem by taking up confidence building measures. they would look outwards at us – just like we would do too. (e) China would not be in a position to challenge the power of the USA in the near future. there was a crisis.6 trillion dollar foreign exchange reserves. presently Hillary Clinton’s Director of Policy in the US State Department has written a major paper on China to say that every time there was economic difficulty within the country. There is no communism in China.118 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 a big industrial power with cutting edge technologies.

China does not have such a liability. . Its inspiration is Lee Kwan Yew. What we have is a completely new set of dynamics and China at this moment does not have the wherewithal to compete with the USA and it is unlikely to change. It is well directed. The relationship with the USA is not one of equals. It is not a fight between democracy and totalitarianism. It has got a huge industrial component. when it was spending 50-55 per cent of its GDP on defence. Soviet Union went down. There are two dynamic economies at play in China. all the Warsaw Pact Countries. China is not going to go the old Soviet Union way.CHINA’S EMPLOYMENT OF SOFT POWER 119 government. the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Countries. This included Ukraine. History seldom repeats itself in that way. it is not in the same league as the USA. It had gone totally berserk militarily speaking and did not have the economy to back it up. It is one of a lower grade economy supplying cheap goods to a high consumptive economy. It was saddled with huge peripheral areas which it had to finance and support. Belarus. China’s economy is pretty homogenous and solid. However. at least not in this Century.

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Session II: Chairman’s Concluding Remarks
We have had an excellent discussion on the elements of soft power and how China has applied its soft power. Undoubtedly, China’s economic performance in the last 20 years has been remarkable. The question arises – Is economics a soft power or is it a clout? As far as China is concerned, it has used its economic strength more as a hard power than as a soft power. Look at the way they have gone about in Africa. The President and the Prime Minister visited Africa and they divided Africa into two, and they offered lots of economic aid to various countries. Professor Baviera made the point that China has not been that successful in its soft power endeavours as it has been in the other field i.e. economic power play. Mr Mohan Guruswamy has made a seminal point; people outside India do not make this mistake, but in India we tend to believe that somehow China has already overtaken America and that America is in a serious state of decline. Far from it. If the USA’s per capita income were to stay absolutely flat at $46,000 and the Chinese were to grow at 7 - 9 per cent and if you applied the rule of 72, 9 years or 8 years to double the per capita income from $3500 to $7000 and $14000 and $28000, it will be 2042 before they catch up with the current American per capita income. That is, as Mohan said, for this Century. Chinese economic power is important. Its application, its softer roles are problematical because of various reasons. Soft power consists of culture, music and cuisine. In cuisine of course they have an advantage,

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but their language makes it very difficult for them to export their soft power in its classical sense. That is going to remain in spite of much money being invested in giving scholarships etc. Basically, what has happened is that Deng’s advice, “be humble and bide for your time” has been forgotten by the Chinese. They are neither humble nor, they are waiting for their time. They are too much in a hurry, and that creates problems. Professor Baviera described how the Chinese are creating apprehensions in this region. If you see, in spite of the amount of money, etc., which they are investing in Africa, their presence is not liked that much as their benevolence really should call for. There is a shift of power taking place. As Paul Kennedy brought out in his book “With the collapse of time, the power now resides in Nations’ and organisations’ hands for a shorter and shorter time”, and if the Chinese do not play their cards carefully that moment also will pass. Nonetheless, I do not want to give the impression that there is not something to be applauded about the progress which they have made in such a short time. May be, the typical Chinese wisdom will prevail in the long run and we will have a happier, more equitable and peaceful world. In the end, I will make one final point, “You can invest in making a strong nation and you can invest in making a strong state”. The Soviet Union invested in making a strong State. But a strong nation requires empowering of its people and I think the Chinese have a long way to go. Any authoritarian regime, would have a long way to go to make a strong nation because authoritarian regimes do not empower people; they really limit their creativity and that in the long run does not pay and it gets overtaken.

STRATEGIC CAPABILITY : SPACE,NUCLEAR,POWER PROJECTION AND REGIONAL POWER
THIRD SESSION

Chairman

Rear Admiral KR Menon (Retd)

First Paper

Professor Han Hua , SIS Peking University

Second Paper Professor Michael Pillsbury, Consultant, USDoD

Third Paper

Mr Yung Sheng Chao, Prospect Foundation, Taipei.

Fourth Paper

Lt Gen (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd), Okazaki Institute, Japan Colonel (now Brigadier) Subodh Kumar, USI Senior Research Fellow

Fifth Paper

Discussion

If you were stuck in traffic jam this morning you might not agree that this is ‘western heaven’. particularly addressing India. I must tell you that the continued presence of the older generation is really one of the great strengths of this Institution. The Chinese say. when we use the expression ‘harmonious society’. there it is. They say things which the world outside does not take seriously. sure of one thing that China has certainly risen. ‘we believe in dispute resolution’. they agree but middle kingdom is below western heaven.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 125 Session III : Chairman’s Opening Remarks Rear Admiral K Raja Menon (Retd) Good morning ladies and gentlemen. So how could there be a conflict? Now the ones who argue against it and say that there could be conflict because of Marxism. ‘from this country which they refer to as the western heaven’ . The Chinese say that Marxism is a Western idea and there is nothing . and senior citizens of the USI. You debated some very weighty issues yesterday. That also explains why the Chinese get very upset when there is a conflict between Japan and China because they say Japan is a child of this great harmonious society culture. The jury is still out on whether the rise is peaceful or not. This is a serious concept in China.which is supposed to be India. I had a look at some of the great writers on the philosophical culture that defines China. Where do we get these ideas from. The Chinese say. We are however. There are some very interesting writings. ‘we don’t think that disputes should arise if there is a harmonious society’. When we say China is the ‘middle kingdom’. To set the background to the discussions this morning. But. Under this concept they state.

We have a very learned panel this morning. May I now call upon the first speaker Professor Han Hua from the Beijing University to give her presentation. it is Mao who said. After all. . ‘power comes from the barrel of a gun’. I will leave maximum time for questions.126 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Chinese about Marxism – economic theory of surplus value and all that.

STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 127 Session III : First Paper Professor Han Hua If you look at the Nuclear Forces. Talking about China specifically. you can have a general view about how powerful China has become in terms of strategic capability. you can see that China has developed sufficient Nuclear deterrence capability. and also the Ju Long series of Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles. It shows we have 118 Nuclear warheads. 034 Nuclear capable Submarines. If you look specifically at the ICBMs. After seeing the Chinese military parade on the Tiananmen Square a few months ago the people said. It has a total of 275 warheads. Upto 1996 China had done 45 tests.alert status’. In recent years. It means. and also 033. it is interesting to say there are so many estimates about Chinese Nuclear capability but the figures are gradually getting down. in the newly released data by the Federation of Association of Scientists of the USA and look at China. The western terminology of “deterrence” is neither correct nor accurate word to explain China’s . China has upgraded its Du Fong missiles – specifically Du Fong 31 and Du Fong 41. Objective of Chinese Nuclear Strategy is to counter coercion. the warheads are kept separated from the missiles. People are looking at China’s new developments. comprising of land. which is the highest estimate. I would like to share some facets about the Chinese Nuclear build up. SLBMs and bombers. another estimate may be a little bit different from this one. and limited ‘de. China has a small size trial arsenal. It means not to yield to Nuclear blackmails and coercion. submarine and bombers. and ‘slow retaliation’ – only one week after the Nuclear attack. We (China) have lesser Nuclear warheads and delivery systems compared with the USA and Russia.

For China. Among the NPT nuclear states China is the only country which concedes to NFU to provide security assurance to nuclear have-nots and nuclear weapon free zones. China’s nuclear modernisation of its Nuclear capability. ‘Deterrence’ translated into Chinese is ‘wei she’ is not an appropriate translation because it is not compatible to ‘deterrence’. Smaller warheads make the weapons more accurate. The last one is to change from liquid fuel to solid fuel – to reduce launch preparation time. rather it means “coercion”. China’s NFU is unconditional. has three parameters. The rationale of the driving force behind this modernisation. Some Western scholars describe the Chinese Nuclear Strategy as a transformation from ‘minimum deterrence’ to ‘limited deterrence’. which signifies their war fighting capability. In recent years China has a threat perception from the USA’s pre-emptive strike capability and intention. Some Chinese scholars and strategists have already begun to believe in the Western concept of “deterrence”. The solid based missiles are vulnerable to attack. The other side of the driving force of Chinese modernisation is China’s ‘threat perception’. ‘use only as a last resort’. low operational capabilities of nuclear submarines. The second direction of the modernisation is ‘accuracy’. NFU makes more sense than first use. solid fuel missiles have higher readiness and low early warning capabilities. NFU means. The core strategy is ‘no first use’ (NFU) policy. specially for ICBMs and SLBMs. There are two reasons behind this: one is the Nuclear Posture Review in 2001 and the other is an article: “The End of MAD – US Nuclear Primacy” published in the Foreign . What are the differences between “minimum deterrence” and “counter coercion”? The objective of the Chinese nuclear strategy is to counter ‘coercion’. The first one is. Chinese vulnerability makes it imperative for China to upgrade its nuclear capability. is the vulnerability of Chinese ‘limited nuclear deterrence’. ‘increase mobility for survivability’. In sum.128 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 strategy.

China also made an assurance to Rumsfeld. China has also made a more clear statement about their different strategies. More US nuclear weapons are targeting China and there are more US nuclear submarines in the Pacific Ocean. “China is committed to the NFU” of nuclear weapons. the Chinese apprehension from the US intent for use of nuclear weapons. specifically after the US raised the ‘Missile Defence Plan. China’s nuclear development has been slow and China has a unique strategy of countering coercion. but in crisis nuclear forces go into a state of alert. the Secretary of Defence of the USA when he visited China four years ago. Actually in recent years. in the Arms Control community we . “During peacetime nuclear weapons don’t target any country. we can say that China is trying to retain or upgrade counter-coercion capability that includes : (a) The counter measures to US Missile Defence System (b) Survivability of a nuclear first strike (c) NFU will be kept as the core of the strategy. The Chinese military strategy “Calls for the building of a lean but effective deterrence force and the flexible use of different means of deterrence”. The White Paper says. The third one is.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 129 Affairs Journal. if you look at the newly published 2009 White Paper in China you can have more concrete views about Chinese nuclear strategy. Overall. For example. especially. Another driving force is ‘The US Missile Defence’. China has developed small size and sufficient nuclear capability. About new directions of Chinese nuclear future. These two developments in the US really made the Chinese feel not very confident when they talk about their nuclear capability. and when facing nuclear attack second artillery will get ready for a nuclear counter attack to deter the enemy from using nuclear weapons against China”. in China.

in general China takes a positive view about Nuclear Weapons Free Zone but we still think the two nuclear powers ought to take the lead to dramatically reduce the number of the warheads and the delivery systems.130 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 have a big debate about whether China should keep the NFU policy intact or they should change it into some conditional NFU. Lastly. They have to do something before China is drawn in the process. nuclear disarmament. Chairman’s Remarks The professor has given a very powerful message. so far we have signed the agreement reached by the USA and Russia but since Obama proposed the ‘Nuclear Weapons Free World Plan’ and China has been asked or pressurised to have something to do in the ‘Nuclear Disarmament’ field. is considerably lower than what its financial capacity is capable of sustaining. In our part of the world. considering the present political turmoil in Pakistan. How does the surveillance system tell the difference when one of these missiles is launched as to whether the tip is nuclear or non-nuclear? . We have to take note from all sources that are available to us that the number of nuclear warheads that China is attempting to stabilise at. we are a little more concerned with the proliferation to Pakistan which is certainly an issue that might come around to bite them. Whether it is 275 or 300 or 350. In the end. it is around that – which is a very positive step. The other issue that we have to take note of is what China has a very large number of non-nuclear tipped ballistic missiles. The quality of weapons also matter. the mainstream in China’s security community still believes that NFU serves Chinese interest the most.

There are two big obstacles to answering these questions.000 warheads. She very carefully quoted American left wing pro-China views of China’s nuclear forces. You cannot have signals intelligence. I hope that is true. “Yes. China wants peace. Then you find at the moment of Chinese attack. on our side and on the Indian side. affecting the thinking of military planners.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 131 Session III : Second Paper Professor Michael Pillsbury The ‘six questions’ up for discussion are extremely important. The problem with that is that if you look at the ‘memoirs’ in India about 1962. you find tragic efforts in the 1950s to do just this kind of thinking. anti-terrorism measures to prevent what happened in Mumbai. It is the same thing with China. good idea. therefore we should not think about worst case scenarios. 2006: Can we please have a dialogue between our Strategic Forces Commanders? The Chinese President said. The Chinese Nuclear . my country wants peace. your Prime Minister in desperation asking for US air force units to be called in to defend India because there were no forces left between Calcutta and the Chinese military frontline. We all want peace with China. But when the US President asked China’s President on April 20.” It was announced by the White House publicly that same day. I believe Professor Han Hua was giving American views. During our conference yesterday and again this morning apologies are being made for military planning. You cannot invent ‘A Force One Commando’ in just one day. It has never happened. First is Chinese soft power. I hope the Chinese do not follow the model of the Soviet Union and try to match the USA with 10. The idea seems to be that we all want peace.

There is a list of about 25 subjects where China talks about (in a book I wrote 10 years ago) internal self defence needs. No. they have a fear of India. Most recently. The Rand estimated that the Chinese air Force would have 500 billion dollars cumulative to spend. If I missed a lot in Chinese military writings they can spend a lot of money on that over the next 20 years or they can spend nothing. a few hundred miles out that some kind of foreign enemy could fortify these island chains and blockade China. and comments from the Chinese Defence White Paper on a topic of extreme importance. Where is the Chinese Nuclear force going in 20 years? An important thing for all of these six questions is: How much money will China have to spend? There is a Rand Corporation study online. He brought the Second Artillery – Professor Han Hua just mentioned. that is a lot of money. done a few years ago that estimates the Chinese Navy budget. So. Here no island chain blockade will happen. we have to use American left wing pro-China statistics. our Chinese highest level visitor went out there. the area of strategic reach. They can spend a lot of money on the Indian threat or nothing. Their main topic was Japan when they raised this question. should they . China has no early warning system for its nuclear forces for example. then this level of money could be spent on very internally focussed systems for China – self defence. So. he had nothing to say. and really had nothing to say. Look at the low level scenario. He just cannot quite come to the US Strategic Forces Command. if you look at our questions.132 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Forces Commander always has some place else to visit. does not see India as a threat. A world of peace – China has great trust in American military deployments that are not aimed at China. cumulative: How much money will they have to spend from year 2005 to 2025? Over those 20 years they have 500 billion dollars to spend. They see an Indian threat and they write about it. He has been to Argentina. Rand estimates appear conservative. It could be much more. does not see Japan as a threat. He brought the Political Commissar because this man would know little bit about the Chinese future Nuclear planning. China is very concerned about the island chains opposite China’s coast. Thirdly. Chile and many other places. Spend a lot of money on that.

and other places. you can have a conference topic on what is China’s Assassin’s Mace? It is secret. But it is a war winning concept. For example. Chinese soft power can be very effective at putting people to sleep. So. This is a 1200 years old concept from Tang Dynasty – it is brought out secretly. cumulative acquisition budgets combined. They said no. . Your Department of Defence (DoD) people are just wasting their time. While some Americans have written about this. no – ‘Assassins Mace’ just means a kick-ass weapon. James Bond always has a very special piece of technology he can pull out of his briefcase or somewhere and he saves the situation. He was going to be killed but he saves himself because he has what the Chinese call Assassin’s Mace. when I asked him: What is this Assassin’s Mace? I have to translate this for my books. A look at the Assasin’s Mace concept. the Chinese civilian scholars make fun of it. the Chinese might use a special technique that may be unique – not used before by anyone else. China could spend nothing on power projection. one Chinese General told me. very easy Dr Pillsbury. These Rand estimates are weapons acquisition budgets only. we do not care. You see James Bond movies – at the very end. It is not known to the enemy. he said. strategic reach in the Indian Ocean or they could have a trillion dollars to spend on it over the next 20 years for the Air Force and Navy. A number of Chinese military officers have discussed the Assassin’s Mace concept indiscreetly. There is no such thing. It is just a colloquial expression. How do you put it. The Americans have a hard time in understanding this term. no. A lot of Chinese military authors say-yes this is a threat. no we have no intention of making the Indian Ocean an ‘Indian’ Ocean. If Indian soft power succeeds. Professor Han Hua made a very good point that China has a unique strategic culture and approach to many strategic problems. It seems to mean. while dating a girl. You build the technology and then you use it at the time to save yourself from disaster.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 133 attempt to protect their sea lanes of communication (SLOC) coming to the Indian Ocean. We will never interfere with Chinese oil tankers coming through here and we do not care if China forms military agreements with Burma or Pakistan. But suppose Indian soft power reassures China. we will do nothing about this.

If that is right. China cannot make any progress in this area and so our military planners should not plan for it. ‘training should be done now. around 2000-2001.134 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 The other concepts. You have to think about Chinese soft power in terms of these requests:- . China has numerous requests to the USA and some to India. They cannot do this. American developments. what is the main conclusion all experts on Chinese military draw in the USA? If you read through all our studies.e. trying hard in their training scenarios but very pathetic. PLA Air force. no hope. His name is Shu Gan Fu. i. for the future’. This book gives 24 Campaign Plans on military operations that. Of the 24 Campaign Plans. how many people would have forecast that China would deploy more than 1000 short range missiles against Taiwan? It did happen. Will they have any success in doing this? If Chinese soft power is successful. 1990-91 public comments about Chinese missile forces. over the next 20 years. That seems to be the current situation. what you will find is: China is very bad at integrated joint warfare capability. we have the low end scenario for military planners. guess. very backward. The intelligence community failed so badly in the forecasts in 1980’s and in 1990 that the opportunity for policy makers to do something was taken away. make a huge difference on what the Chinese would do with their own missile forces. Professor Han Hua did a very good job on the low end nuclear missile modernisation. the American answer and the Indian answer will be no. But there is a wonderful book in Chinese which I hope someone would translate. and other units must cooperate. It is called Science of Joint Campaign Training. PLA Navy. ‘Island Chain Blockade’ says – Second Artillery Missile Forces. It is written by a Chinese General who is Chief of Operations. and perhaps Indian and Japanese. In America if you look back at the 1980s. Nobody projected a short range ballistic missile build up opposite Taiwan means that the US policy and Taiwan policy had no chance to work on heading off or persuading China please do not do this. all of them are ‘Integrated Joint Campaign’ scenarios. In terms of integrated joint war capability. and describes how this can be done. Chinese soft power and self deception by American analysts was very strong. She made a very important point. For example.

India maintains a government in exile for Tibet. 60 pages. It is a Law. lot of graphics. Dalai Lama’s position is: My government. because of request from Congress. on line. China says you (America) must do this. logistics etc. power projection. In the US mapping it is always shown contested territory with little blue lines in Aksai Chin Area and also in Arunachal Pradesh. The best effort of the DoD to understand China today. why does America seem to passively consent this? (e) Another request from China. you are going too far in military talks with China. nuclear deterrence. The US would not sell spare parts of weapons we sold to China in the 1980s. cancel the limits. This is the topic of dialogue China would not have. This would be very unharmonious world. . you must never talk about these 12 things. Aksai Chin Tibetan Plateau area is Chinese territory. my parliament. Do not do it anymore. China says this law must be repealed. (b) Number two. the DoD Annual Report on Chinese military power: very detailed. It upsets people and in a way it blocks the effort of Chinese soft power to claim peaceful rise. There are 12 legally required limits about topics that the US military cannot discuss with China. (d) Another Chinese request – Arunachal Pradesh should be returned to China. Chinese friends object to this: Why does Pentagon do this? This is Chinese territory. my cabinet ministers must return to Lhasa. The US Congress passed a law 10 years ago which says. so don’t do this. China says cancel this Law. Why does India do this. (c) Number three. as this Report is very misleading. it must be done. stop your pressure on Europe and Israel who want to sell weapons to China worth billions of dollars. Also. especially anything that helps India to upgrade maritime patrol capability in the Indian Ocean or anything that helps India along the frontier.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 135 (a) Number one. do not sell weapons to India.

136 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Chinese soft power includes a number of demands.do not build up in the Indian Ocean. . I hope our efforts to use American soft power towards China will succeed because our view is: China needs to follow Confucius tradition. I have only mentioned a few of them. We have a long list of American soft power hopes for a Chinese approach to a harmonious world and hope American soft power will succeed as well as Chinese soft power does. to get you frightened without hitting you on the head. Chairman’s Remarks It is not surprising that in a military institution we may think that soft power is not valid. needs to be more transparent about its own military build up in the next 10 or 20 years with specific figures – not relying on Union of Scientists and other Left Wing US organisations. If you really want soft power to succeed. There is this challenge in trying to tell the Chinese . needs to defend its internal issues only. needs to avoid these six areas. well. not only should there be no military planning against high end contingencies involving China. The views expressed by me are personal and do not represent the US government in any way. It is $ 500 billion that is going to be available for the PLA at 37 per cent of the budget for the next 25 years.how else is it going to be used? This is a challenge for the Chinese diplomacy to tell the world that either they are not going to spend that much money or they are going to spend it on something else. He made a very valid point. but if any of you got frightened this morning as I did when Michael was speaking. America and India must make specific moves to bring about a harmonious world. The shadow boxing that is going to happen should take strategic directions more clearly. that is soft power. If this is not going to be used to build up a giant Navy. but.

This has also resulted in development of major weaknesses in China’s Strategic Forces. Many Chinese writers recognise the potential vulnerability of China’s SLOC. South China Sea. Therefore. The US Department of Defence . What is China’s approach? China’s approach to deal with this challenge appears to be reflected in sustained effort to develop the capability to ‘attack’ long range military force that might deploy or operate within the Western Pacific area. the need to establish control of the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 137 Session III : Third Paper Mr Yung Sheng Chao My presentation will cover PRC’s military force projection capability and regional security. maritime transport routes and expansion of influence of military power on the first island chain has become an inevitable choice of China. The weapons display revealed transition of strategic gravity of the PLA from ‘Homeland Defence’ to assuring the “Stability of China’s Land and Maritime Periphery’. providing multiple layers of offensive systems utilising the sea air space and cyber space. In this context. China envisages anti-access and aerial denial power increasingly. China held its 60th Anniversary parade last month. To meet its energy needs. China would be highly dependent on crude oil produced in the Persian Gulf. The PLA displayed most updated weapons systems of its different services. new generation aircraft and ships to engage and for repelling a foreign aggression. The proportion of imports by the sea lanes of communication (SLOC) will be more and more. The PLA is also organising Second Artillery.

At the same time. of operating freely around the coastal areas in China. the PLA is also building satellite-short base radar and other sensors monitoring network consisting of integrated systems to locate and track enemy’s surface warships. like the Dong Fong 15. the PLA has made great progress in this field. The PLA. Thereafter. but could not persuade the US defence research community to either agree or comply. because their logistics and mobility are relatively weak. Research literature on the PLA’s anti-aircraft carrier operations emphasise the importance of . The range of its conventional ballistic missile and cruise missiles can cover most of the US military bases in East Asia. What most people are concerned about is the establishment of China’s ‘anti-access’ operational capability. special forces as well as computer network attacks to deter or prevent the involvement of any third country in its interests. but to aim at preventing development of US military capability. it decided not to compete with the US warships and fighter jets. Over the last decade. hundreds of kilometres away from its coastal areas. In China Military Report 2009. China believes that in modern warfare. China will not be able to project and sustain small military units far beyond China before 2015 and would not be able to project and sustain large force in combat operations far from China until the following decade. they would use short range and medium range ballistic missiles. global positioning and tracking systems. Meanwhile.138 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (DoD) 2009 estimates that China will take until the end of this decade or longer to produce a model force capable of defeating a moderate size adversary. The first problem in implementing this strategy is ‘detecting the US aircraft carriers’. China’s combat operations efforts in recent years reflect their intent to engage in multilayer interceptions. the US DoD points out that the PLA hopes to build integrated systems in the 21st Century based on anti-ship ballistic missiles. tried to refuse access. land attack cruise missiles. C4ISR systems and inter-continental ballistic missile guidance system to tackle enemy surface ships. firstly.

i. China has been developing and applying ocean reconnaissance satellites. It is connected by including many platforms like 956-M. comprises of three different layers. In the new round of arms procurement from Russia. China has been paying great attention towards integration of C4ISR with data link. when the USA decides to pull back their aircraft carriers far away from China’s coast. or capability to conduct strikes against them from land and sea. The ‘second layer’ of the deterrence covers the range from 1500-1000km. the combat platform will have a much enhanced capability in conducting integrated anti-aircraft carrier operations. 052 Class DDGs and short range ballistic missiles. The main weapon systems to cover this range include K-36 Sub with superior concealed features. It is stressed that the Americans ‘using the costly aircraft carriers’ is the key to their global power projection capability. the Chinese anti-access strategy would face crisis. The ‘third layer’ covers the range from 500-200km. in the future. enabling the PLA to project its softer combat power to outer waters 300-500 km from the shore. DF15 Model II and the Zero Night series submarines to deter an adversary. Whilst Russia’s 82N data link technology is transferred to the Chinese force. They would then be beyond the effective range of the Chinese aircraft. After this C4ISR systems are put into service. However. The Chinese plan to conduct anti-access tactics against aircraft carriers successfully. the detection range for locating aircraft carriers can be greatly enhanced.e. China is experimenting with anti-satellite weapons and techniques for striking down enemy’s computer networks. The weapons systems used could include the DF21 series.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 139 C4ISR network data link. In addition to this more direct mode of attack. . SU-30 fighters and JH7. Within the outer range of 2000km from the Chinese coast line – known as the ‘outer layer’. the PLA will use tactical missiles. This would reduce their capability to provide air cover for the US front. Many Chinese military scholars believe that detection of the US aircraft carrier battle groups is not a problem.

South Asia and the Korean Peninsula – also the South China Sea waterways. hoping to play an important role in the Asia-Pacific region and even the whole world. In South Asia. has been the most ignored one by the world in the past 30 years. Japan. In other words. In Central Asia. China cannot build its naval capabilities superior to the US Navy in the near future. it is planning to use ground troops. the PLA tends to cooperate with countries to implement the ‘National Anti-terrorism Mission’ and to jointly protect the oil and gas resources. It is too unrealistic technically for China to use its middle sized aircraft carrier fleet to protect its oil transportation SLOC. Predictably. From the Chinese perspective China today is a geopolitical land power state. its goal is not only Taiwan.e. which has improved the PLA ground force operational capability considerably. i. China’s rapid military modernisation. the PLA can mobilise its troops rapidly by rail and highways system which have been constructed very speedily in the last decade. Due to recently developed armoured vehicles. China’s international behaviour is driven by a long standing ambition to see China play a role of a great power in East Asia and globally. At present China’s military deployment beyond Taiwan is focused on areas extending to Central Asia. it is even beyond that. if the USA and India become China’s rivals. which cover a distance of 7000 km. What is the impact of this play on the region? China is gradually changing the ‘regional stability’ and ‘military balance’ in East Asia and South Asia. the PLA would face confrontation from South Korea.140 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 thereby making them ‘deaf and blind’ during the critical opening phase of a war. China understands the situation very well that the PLA Navy would not be able to . China also needs to pay close attention to whether the situation in North Korea could lead to clashes in the region. armed police. the USA and Russia. It has produced great pressures on present day land neighbours. To consolidate it’s ‘capabilities and activities’ in South Asia and North Asia. navy and the air force and the missile forces to deal with India and strengthening military cooperation with Pakistan and Burma. Historically also China had always performed the role of a strong land power.

In the naval area. Due to lack of transparency in China’s military modernisation. the improvement of PLA’s warfare capability would only create more security pressures and suspicion amongst all its neighbours. the achievements have made the PLA Navy capable of sailing into the blue ocean. During the process of military power transition. will cause a deterrent effect on neighbouring countries in this region. China has reshaped its outdated ground forces step by step and transformed them into a modern force – both in quality and quantity. Therefore. China’s military has made significant advances. The continued improvement in China’s economy will certainly translate into further enhancement in its military capability.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 141 compete with the American and Indian Navies in the Indian Ocean. It has enabled the PLA to extend its power into China’s land and maritime periphery. The Chinese have been successful in guiding the focus of outside world to its naval development and to influence the Western observers to analyse the possible outcomes of this development. without consensus about the strategic intentions behind the recent development of the PLA Navy. Their anti-access strategy training. Of course. especially its neighbours. History. Based on rapid modernisation. including the USA. Scholars continue to debate. however. China behaved carefully to hide its land power strategic intention to serve the purpose of not provoking the ‘China threat suspicion’ amongst other countries. This is the process of countries growing and developing strategic capabilities for obtaining more benefits for themselves. even without a war. The sharp increase in the military forces of China is an indisputable fact. reminds us that expansion of military prowess results in conflicts only. it must extend its land power to its South Western periphery and utilise land power supremacy to offset its sea power inferiority in South Asia. China . construction of Chinese military power should not necessarily mean that it would lead to conflict.

that an ‘anti-access’ strategy for them is ‘defensive’ but for the Taiwanese it is clearly ‘offensive’. then it is going to change the nature of Maritime Warfare. of convincing its neighbours that its rise is peaceful. is not going to cause threatening power projection capabilities’ that is a serious challenge. the Chinese would probably say. backed by Over the Head Radars. The USA and other Asia Pacific countries would also have to face it in the future. We assume that this is coming. Chairman’s Remarks Thank you Mr Yung Sheng Chao. which is available to China. Is it the Radar. The two issues which have been brought up. So. .142 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 cannot avoid it. Living in Taiwan. If it is. Firstly. and the other of course is ‘identifying the ‘Assassin’s Mace’. or Infra Red terminal homing of ballistic missiles. there is a strategic gap here. We have to understand this: ‘spending of the huge amount of money. and realising the fact that China’s soft power is not succeeding in its projections. must be disturbing. China appears to be working on trying to win the pre-hostilities escalation phase by denying space assets to a competing power. are the ones about which the countries on the periphery are aware. Of course.

connecting decision makers and combat forces across the globe. Its Space programme was partially shielded from interference during the cultural revolution in early 1970s. when many other programmes faced severe disruption. both in strategic and in tactical operations. surveillance and reconnaissance. intelligence information and tasking orders. For instance. many of the technological advances have broadened the Space capability into commercial and military areas. e. Our social infrastructure would collapse completely without space capabilities. space enabled a wide range of capabilities to the US and coalition forces. the Chinese Space capability developments are very confidential. which included missile warning. lasers.g. SATCOM enables information sharing at all levels of warfare. It has been investing in Space capabilities since the 1960s. Space enabled communications link transfers a lot of information including threat data. Even in early 1991. In military application. communications. The .STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 143 Session III : Fourth Paper Lieutenant General (Air Force) Takayoshi Ogawa (Retd) The focus of the talk will be on ‘Chinese Space Warfare Capability’. Space forces are now closely embedded in combat operations and play a key role in providing data surveillance. Today. China is one of the most active Space power in Asia. reach and power for the nation’s civilian and military radars. Global Positioning System (GPS) navigation and timing signal has enabled to turn ‘dumb bomb’ into ‘smart munitions’ effectively with relatively little cost. Satellite Communication (SATCOM) also plays a major role in feeding data information to the 21st Century military. Firstly. during Operation Desert Storm in Iraq. space capabilities are essential.

as a historic step taken by the Chinese people in their endeavour to surmount the peak of the world science and technology. China used its Space programme to announce its great power status and regional dominance.144 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 investment has paid off for China. Furthermore. Chinese activities in Space were undertaken primarily to affirm or enhance prestige and influence rather than continuously building up operational capabilities so far. China looks to these new technologies to provide asymmetric advantages against the United States and other potential opponents. China intended to show its prowess as a super power. which was the first Chinese manned spaceship in October 2003. Chinese manned orbital mission is a part of its ambitious programme for exploration. It has resulted in visible enhancement of its ‘prestige’. China also hopes to take advantage of new technologies like Micro Satellites to create new Space capabilities that would also allow it to exceed developed nations. The long term goal is to make Space operations integral part of China’s national power. China’s President Hu Jintao described the success of Shenzhou – 5. . Between 2010 and 2012 there will be a docking manoeuvre with another Spacecraft followed by a construction of the permanent Space station – establishment of a permanent Space station is the major goal of the manned Space programme. So. It means not a true multiplier of weapons systems but a symbolic status of technologies. The motives that guide both Chinese civil and military Space efforts fall into three categories. China also wants Space to provide these eye-catching activities which enhance Chinese prestige and influence. The next phase of the manned programme was Shenzhou7 launched in September 2008. This means that military Space architecture for China looked very different from that used by the USA or Russia. Shenzhou-7 carried three astronauts and one of those astronauts carried out a Space walk. The first involves China in bringing Space capabilities equivalent with other developed nations.

This includes both military and civilian Space projects. working on unmanned Lunar Exploration programme named Changai. China has built and flown numerous remote sensing and reconnaissance satellites. Overtime. The most visible example of current Chinese military Space programme is the Anti Satellite (ASAT) test. Remote sensing technologies are a vital element of information technologies. this may mean that the Space budget will increase every year. There are press reports that China is also developing other kinds of ASAT weapons including ground based lasers and jammers against satellite signals. but this does not include all Space related expenditure. They did not expect global condemnation of their ASAT test which . China’s Space budget was secret until 1994. took Moon’s surface pictures and is now still orbiting the Moon. It has still not been made public. The Chinese intentions for the test may be to confirm its Asymmetric Warfare capabilities against the USA and to show its Space hegemony in this region. Chinese military has identified them as a vital area for building Space capabilities. Chinese remote sensing effort has become more sophisticated and improved. The ASAT test involves direct delivery system to intercept a ballistic missile or a satellite. The first Chinese model was primitive having poor image resolution.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 145 China has another Space project. It was estimated to be between $1 to $3 billion per year. planned over the next 12 years. Perhaps the most interesting thing about the test was that China miscalculated the reaction to it. The guided laser ASAT weapon that China tested in January 2007 appears to be part of a larger effort to deploy a range of ASAT capabilities. The Lunar programme has three phases. take their capabilities in remote sensing. One US specialist estimates that China spends a little less than one half of one per cent of the GDP for all the Space programmes. Changai-I was launched successfully in October 2007. Since the GDP of China is growing rapidly. China hopes that success of the Changai project will set the stage for manned Lunar missions. Chinese Space related technologies are notable e.g.

if China deploys ASAT weapons it would hold satellites in the global orbit at risk. who actually eventually handout the budgets. But. particularly putting a man on the Moon actually helps to win domestic elections. does not mean that it will not do so in the future. It even makes the stock markets go up! . This miscalculation reflects inexperience in international politics and a certain degree of hubris found in China’s economic success. no single option is either simple and cheap or one that would work fully and effectively. reconnaissance. They would pose a special potential threat to the US military operations in the Pacific. then you would also get colonised. Anyway. A view of what China has built and launched suggests that China’s military Space effort is intended primarily to demonstrate technology and to test many different types of satellites. Despite a range of potential responses. Just as the ‘seas’ were the new frontier in the 15th Century and if you have failed in the challenge like we failed in the 15th century. to recognise that the Space is a new frontier. If China has not yet done so. one of the unfortunate aspects is that Space scientists have a very close access to political leaders. Those geo Space assets would significantly affect most military operations. but China is clearly focussed on military use of Space for asymmetric approaches to conflict. There is enough study going on here in India too. Although politicians may not understand rocket science. geo-navigation and other services. Chairman’s Remarks Thank you General.146 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 caused Space debris. which would also include US responses. China has built almost a full range of military Space capabilities and it could rapidly deploy satellites for signalling. in case of Taiwan contingency. The civil Space programme seems to be the high priority for now. intelligence. they are very quick to understand that successful Space programmes.

Supported by a fast growing GDP and a large military-industrial complex. Over the years. I think when that happens. While the multifaceted and rapid growth of Chinese space capabilities is being keenly observed by the entire world. the then Chief NASA administrator is reported to have said. “I personally believe that China will be back on the moon before we are. Michael Griffin. China has a developed a variety of satellites and space applications spanning the entire spectrum of space activities. China is the third nation to have successfully achieved manned spaceflight following the USA and the erstwhile USSR. In fact. what is perhaps more significant from the Indian perspective is that most analysts agree that the one defining characteristic of the Chinese space programme is its military orientation. It may well soon be the second to land a man on the Moon. in addition to the large family of Long March series of space launch vehicles. a fact now begrudgingly recognised by US space experts. China has one of the most ambitious space programmes of world. Americans will not like it. But they will just have to not like it”.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 147 Session III : Fifth Paper Brigadier Subodh Kumar Chinese Space Warfare Capabilities How can China be Expected to use her Demonstrated Space Warfare Capability? Introduction China is today the undisputed space super-power of Asia and the fastest rising star in the hierarchy of the extant space powers. in Sep 2007. As the international consortium Space Security Index 2009 puts .

Most Indian achievements in space have primarily been in civilian commercial or scientific fields. a few issues related to the geopolitical . project its military power. the reality is that India lags far behind in space warfare capabilities and has much ground to cover before it can fully leverage its space prowess to enhance its national security.148 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 it – “China’s governmental space program does not maintain a strong separation between civil and military applications. while being an aspiring space power with an ambitious space programme. navigation and remote-sensing satellites in orbit and is perhaps the third largest user of military satellites outside US and Russia. is a relative newbie in the field of military uses of outer space. This capability gap. However in what may be called the crowning glory of the Chinese space warfare capabilities. It can thus be stated unequivocally that space power forms an important part of the Chinese Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA). China is also in the process of setting up a sophisticated satellite based Qu Dian C4I system broadly modelled on the US Joint Tactical Information Distribution System (JTIDS). India. and safeguard its national interests. It is in this context that the Chinese space warfare capabilities and philosophy are of a special interest to India. It is also noteworthy that China has known capability to launch electronic intelligence (ELINT) and electronic warfare (EW) satellites. While the Indian space programme is globally acclaimed and the Indian space establishment has consistently proven that it can match the best in capabilities and innovation. launched and operated by state-owned military industrial corporations. on the other hand. China became the third country in the world with a demonstrated antisatellite (ASAT) capability after the successful destruction of a satellite with a ground based interceptor in Jan 2007. China has a large number of military oriented communication. cannot but be detrimental to India’s security. especially in relation to China. unless urgently addressed. China is one of the few nations with a proven offensive space warfare capability. However before discussing the Chinese space capabilities in detail.” Even today a large chunk of Chinese satellites are either pure military or dual-use.

Though all nations profess to pursue space activities for ‘peaceful purposes’ and ‘for benefit of mankind’. Hence a focus on developing space capabilities forms a crucial component of the grand strategy of all major powers. on land.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 149 significance of outer space forcing more and more countries to seek space capabilities driving need to be highlighted. but. In fact the first lot of space launch vehicles developed . Therefore. war. the fact of the matter are that by their very nature. Geopolitical Significance of Space Clash of Interests The 21st century will undoubtedly witness an exponential increase in space activities by an increasing number of players. there is not much difference between a ballistic missile and a space launch vehicle. History bears witness that whenever military and economic interests of nations have clashed. in a quest for light and space. it would be safe to assume that space exploitation and domination will form an important component of contemporary and future military strategy. For example. space activities are innately dual-use. Duality of Space Assets Another factor which enhances the geopolitical significance of space is the inherent duality of space assets. Mankind seems to be at the cusp of a vigorous military and economic exploitation of outer space and perhaps prove true the prophetic words of the visionary Russian space engineer Konstantin Tsiolkovsky who had predicted as early as 1903 ”Mankind will not remain forever on earth. sea or air it has invariably led to a struggle for control and at times. China is no different and considers space activities as a key component of its overall development strategy and a major contributor to its Comprehensive National Power. will first timidly penetrate the atmosphere and later conquer the whole of the solar system”. There is no reason to presume a future outer space rivalry will produce different results.

South Korea. some not on best of terms. Indonesia. These are US. Russia and China were direct derivatives of ballistic missiles. Kazakhstan. Perhaps one of the most obvious recent example of this duality is the widespread use of Global Positioning System satellites for military targeting and guidance. Ukraine. Sputnik-1 was launched by a modified R7 ICBM. Turkey. These include North Korea. Increase in the Number of Space Players It is perhaps due to the dual-use capabilities of space assets that more and more nations are clamouring to join the ‘Space Club’. surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and telecommunication satellites for military communications. it is easy to envisage that remote sensing satellites can also be used for military intelligence. the DFH-1 was launched by the Long March-1 rocket. it is that doubtful that space will remain unaffected by global and regional events. Azerbaijan. Pakistan. Brazil. Romania. Taiwan. Today there are nine nations with demonstrated space launch capabilities.150 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 by the United States. Malaysia. Many other countries are waiting-in-the-wings with active space programmes in varying stages of development. European Union (France and UK have launched satellites independently before formation of EU). It is perhaps . Explorer-1 was launched by a JupiterC rocket derived from the Redstone ICBM. Russia. In addition to these. and Canada. a direct derivative of the DF-1 ICBM. New Zealand. there are a number of nations who have restrained their developmental efforts to satellites and satellite applications while relying on commercial launch facilities of other nations. Australia. In a similar vein. Japan. India. It is thus easy to conjecture that the future will see a dramatic rise in space-enabled nations. South Africa. The first Soviet satellite. it would not be incorrect to state that even a ‘purely’ civilian space programme would have some military spin-offs and a considerable deterrent value. Even the first Chinese satellite. and the first American satellite. Israel and Iran. Thus given the inherent dual-use capability of space systems. With so many players.

is inadequate to prevent further militarisation of space. Missile Proliferation and Space Militarisation Closely linked to the issue of space militarisation is the issue of missile proliferation. Therefore. Recent examples include Iran’s Safir2 SLV which is reported to be a derivative of its Shahab 3B missile which itself is a derivative of North Korean Nodong missile. It is well known that an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile and a Space Launch Vehicle are essentially similar. It is also noteworthy that while the Outer Space Treaty 1967 prohibits placing of nuclear weapons or WMD in space. it would still be safe to assume that they would divert at least some portion of their space resources for military purposes for enhancing their national security. any nation with ballistic missile capability has an inherent potential of developing space launch capabilities. It can thus be asserted with a fair amount of certainty that with the increase in the number of space players. The first space launch vehicles developed by US. other military uses are not expressly prohibited. It is thus quite obvious that missile proliferation directly or indirectly contributes to militarization of space. . In this context it is noteworthy that even small countries like Greece and Belgium are active participants along with Spain and Italy in the Helios very-high-resolution optical imaging military reconnaissance programme led by France.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 151 inevitable that terrestrial rivalries will sooner or later spill over to space thus raising fears that outer space may well become the battle ground for geopolitics in the 21st century. China and United Kingdom were derivatives of ballistic missiles which themselves evolved from German rockets of World War II. Even in the unlikely eventuality of most future space powers pursuing a primarily civilian space programme. militarization of space is only likely to increase in the future. The first satellite Helios 2A was launched in 2004 and the second Helios 2B in 2009. Soviet Union. at least in its present form. It is evident that the framework of international space law.

space launch vehicle capabilities and manned space flight. the Indian space programme was started in the 1960’s purely for scientific and civilian purposes. India on the other concentrated its energies in satellite development and later migrated to space launch vehicles. China focused on a parallel development of ballistic missiles. This difference in their histories was to set the tone for the future development of the space . While the roots of Chinese space programme lie in her attempts to develop ballistic missiles with Russian help in the 1950-60’s. Following the example of the US and the USSR. It was only in 1980 that India succeeded in placing a Rohini experimental satellite in orbit using the indigenous SLV-3 rocket. The first Indian satellite Aryabhata was launched in 1975 using a Soviet launch vehicle. The first satellite Dong Fang Hong-1 (DFH-1) or The East is Red was launched in 1970 using a Chang Zheng1 (CZ-1) or Long March-1 rocket (basically a modified version of Dong Feng-4 ballistic missile). In fact the famous Cox report submitted by a Select Committee of the US House of Representatives does not mince any words in pointing an accusing finger at China and openly alleges that “The PRC has transferred ballistic missile technology to Iran. That most of the ‘client’ Chinese states are slowly but steadily migrating from ballistic missile to space capabilities raises justifiable fears of use or misuse of missile proliferation and space capability as a tool for ‘containment’. Libya and other countries”.152 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 In this context China’s record of missile proliferation leaves much to be desired. Pakistan. Sino-Indian Space Equation Evolutionary Overview Perhaps the military orientation of the Chinese space programme and the lack thereof in case of India can be traced to the evolutionary trajectory followed by two space programmes. The first Chinese ballistic missile Dong Feng-1 (DF-1) or East Wind-1 was launched successfully on in 1960. North Korea. Saudi Arabia. The first Indian ballistic missile was to come as late as 1988.

Even today most analysts consider China to be way ahead of India in the space launch vehicle technology. Tsien was victimised during the McCarthy era and accused of being a communist. hailed him as a hero. Tsien Hsue Shen who orchestrated both the missile and space programmes till his retirement in 1991. Fortuitously for the Chinese. best practices and techniques from the US. and promptly made him in charge of the ballistic missile and space programmes. he was one of the co-founders of the renowned Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and an important member of the American ballistic missile programme. These historical factors ensured that the Chinese space establishment and the PLA maintained strong links which have endured till date. He was even given the honorary rank of a Colonel in the USAF and was a part of the team which entered Germany at the end of World War II to locate and bring back key personnel and documents of the German rocket programme. the Chinese space programme was under the direct control of the PLA for more than three decades. In this context it is noteworthy that out of the 50 years of its existence. India on the other hand is considered to have a slight edge over China in communication and remotesensing satellite technology. It was only in the reforms era that the Chinese made an .STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 153 programmes. Soviet assistance and backing of the powerful PLA in the crucial formative years. Eventually his security clearance was stripped off and he was forced to leave the US. Not only did Tsien bring the latest knowledge. The team was successful in its mission and brought back many Nazi rocket scientists including the celebrated Wernher von Braun. including training of Chinese students in Russian universities. The Chinese space programme thus had the benefit of American expertise. A rather interesting aspect of the early years of the Chinese space programme is the life story of its founding father and first director. China welcomed him with open arms. An expatriate from US. but he was also successful in negotiating the 1956 agreement on transfer of nuclear and rocket technology with Russia.

The production of CASIC on the other hand. CASC is also a major producer of missiles and other military hardware. China National Space Agency (CNSA) is the apex policy making body of the Chinese space programme. CASC is the more prominent of the two and said to be actually ‘running’ the space programme. the DRDO was also given the charge of ISRO! In stark contrast to the Chinese system. is skewed . Nevertheless the fact of the matter is that COSTIND retained close links with the PLA since in addition to the space programme. Thankfully recent years have seen a greater synchrony between India space capabilities and her defence needs. Insofar as the space programme is concerned. and almost all satellites. Both are gigantic organizations with approximately 100. the more than six degrees of separation between the Indian space programme and the military establishment are well known.000 employees each. The two major Chinese corporations which actually design produce and launch the Chinese space assets are China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) and China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC). It is also responsible for international cooperation and presents the ‘civilian’ face of the Chinese space industry to the rest of the world. In addition. Chinese Space Industry Analogous to NASA and our own ISRO. It produces the Shenzhou series of spacecraft.154 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 attempt to ‘civilianise’ the space programme by transferring control from the PLA to the Commission of Science Technology and Industry for National Defence (COSTIND). it is an internal structure of the Commission of Science Technology and Industry for National Defence (COSTIND) [which has been recently reorganized as the State Administration of Science Technology and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND)]. However interestingly. Both work on the unique Chinese model public sector companies run on the lines of private corporations. it was also responsible for R&D and production of military hardware of all varieties. it would as if in addition to its other duties. the Long March series of launch vehicles. If a rough Indian analogy could be drawn.

While the versatile PSLV series has emerged as the work-horse of the space programme India hopes to achieve GTO capability of 5 tons with the still under development GSLV Mk III. It has the DFH series satellites for telecommunications. While China has already achieved human spaceflight. The maximum capability for GTO of the Long March family is reported to be approximately 14 tons. China has a large number of satellites encompassing a wide variety of roles. India on the other hand has two main variants in its launch vehicle family viz the PSLV series and the GSLV series. In addition to launch vehicles.000 employees. Its products include spacecraft. machinery etc. While it may be true that the large size of the Chinese corporations may not be a true indicator of the actual size of the Chinese space industry as they are engaged in other activities also. Size and Ambition of Space Programmes Both India and China have ambitious space programmes with China enjoying a definitive edge over India. China also boasts of a much more evolved launch vehicle capability based on the Long March series which has run into six families of launch vehicles till now.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 155 more in favour of military than space hardware. Thus overall China has a massive lead over India in the size and capability of its space industry. specialist vehicles. ISRO on the other hand. telecommunication equipment. is primarily engaged in producing satellites and launch vehicles. the FY series for meteorology. India has still some way to go before it can boast of this feat. China is also in the process of developing the a new series of solid fuel launch vehicles named the KT series which will give it the much sought ‘launch-on-demand’ capability. has less than 15. it cannot be denied that the Chinese policy makers retain the option to divert resources to the space programme at short notice. the FSW series . and is definitely not a part of the Indian military industry. missiles.

the Beidou series navigation and positioning satellites. India also scores over China in the field of remote-sensing satellites. China has an immense lead over India both in the ambition and the extent of its space programme. This is evident from the statement of Luo Ge of the China National Space Agency (CNSA) made in an international symposium in 2006. Conservative estimates indicate that the Chinese space budget is in the region of US $ 1. the HY series ocean satellites and a number of microsatellites (some with foreign collaboration).“Man oh man . This .” It is evident that what to talk of India. He also announced plans for a lunar rover.“Generally speaking. an orbiting Spacelab and a possible lunar landing prompting one of the delegates to respond. In comparison the declared Indian space budget is US $ 892 million.3 billion plus.156 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 recoverable satellites and the ZY series remote-sensing satellites. India too has a variety of special purpose satellites like Oceansat. it would be safe to assume that it would slightly less than double the Indian space budget.. RISAT-2. In addition are the SJ series scientific and experimental satellites. Space Budgets China also enjoys a substantial edge over India in the size of the space budget.. we will be launching about 100 satellites”. in the coming 5-8 years. While the future plans of both nations include lunar exploration and Mars exploration missions in the near future. If the Chinese tendency of keeping their actual budget under wraps is taken into account. scientific research satellites and micro-satellites. even developed countries will be hard pressed to match such capability. In fact the Space Competitiveness Index 2009 developed by the Futron Corporation of the US has called India the ‘global leader in remote-sensing’. they’re not kidding around. By all accounts the Indian communication satellite capability is a shade better than the Chinese. India on the other hand has a relatively smaller family of satellites with the INSAT series and the IRS series forming the backbone of the Indian satellite programme.

Nevertheless. weaponry. China surely has more ambitious plans than just dominating Asia. science and technology development and social progress.“Priority is given to upgrading technologies and products in the nuclear. It states the aims of the Chinese space programme as:♦ To explore outer space.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 157 difference in size and budgets becomes evident when one compares the variety of space ‘products’ of the two space industries. The official Chinese view of integrating space assets into the national security calculus is enunciated quite clearly in the White Paper issued by the Chinese government entitled -”China’s Space Activities” 2006. ♦ To utilize outer space for peaceful purposes. electronics and other defence-related industries. national security. protect China’s national interests and build up the comprehensive national strength. space. India being the immediate neighbour and perhaps a competing power-centre. are being carried out to spur the leapfrogging . The White paper further goes on to state . cannot afford to ignore the security implications of the untrammelled rise of Chinese military space capabilities. Therefore it may be safely concluded that overall the balance of power is tilted in China’s favour. Chinese Space Warfare Capabilities Space and National Security It would be highly erroneous to think that the Chinese space programme is only India-specific or regional in ambition. and benefit the whole of mankind. ♦ To meet the growing demands of economic construction. promote mankind’s civilization and social progress. such as manned space flights and the Lunar Probe Project. aviation. shipbuilding. so as to form a cluster of high-tech industries to drive the growth of China’s economy…… Major scientific and technological projects. and learn more about the cosmos and the Earth.

This is best exemplified in the words of President Hu Jintao in 2006. Nevertheless what is important from the Indian perspective is the policy emphasis both on civil and military uses of space projects. the Chinese do not seem to be averse to leveraging their space capability for national security and power projection. China too does not advocate militarisation of space. and that organically integrates basic research. product designing and manufacturing. As a result.” It thus becomes obvious that while like most other nations. China is also known to have developed ELINT/SIGINT satellites in the past with varied degrees of success. multi-functional. efficient and based on close cooperation between the military and civilian sectors.158 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 development of high-tech enterprises combining military and civilian needs and to bring about overall improvements in defence-related science and technology…. China is a part of international committees like UN COPUOS (United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space) and has recently moved a resolution seeking a ban on offensive activities in space in conjunction with Russia. Ever since the launch of its space programme. This has included the JSSW series (discontinued in the 1970’s) and some SJ series scientific satellites. The Chinese are also known to have tried to enhance their SIGINT capabilities by making an abortive bid to acquire two . applied R&D.“We need to build an innovative system of defence science and technology….. that integrates military and civilian scientifictechnological resources.. a fairly mature scientific and technological infrastructure is taking shape. and procurement of technologies and products to create a good structure under which military and civilian technologies are shared and mutually transferable” Military Capabilities in Space Nowhere is the definitive edge enjoyed by China over India in space more accentuated than in the field of military satellites. China has always had a few satellites dedicated for military communications and remote-sensing. which is well-configured.

PLA launched a dedicated military communication satellite. Another military communication satellite. it is the growing Chinese offensive capability in space which should be worrying Indian policy makers. Thus Chinese interest in space based ELINT/SIGINT assets is well established.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 159 satellites in the open market from Hughes Space & Communications in 1996. The Central committee of Communist party has reportedly given the highest priority to development of antisurveillance ASAT systems. ground or air . China has also launched the Tianlian data relay satellite to support its manned spaceflight programme considerably enhancing the Chinese reach. the first of five satellites planned for the Qu Dian C4I system. Thus it is increasingly becoming clear that Chinese space based C3I capabilities are increasing at such a rapid pace that it may become difficult for India to offset the Chinese edge unless urgent steps are taken to increase Indian military presence in space. As per some reports. FH-1 in 2000. But more than mere military satellites. Insofar as military communications are concerned. even some of the Shenzhou manned spacecraft have carried payloads consistent with SIGINT missions. the ShenTong-1 (ST-1) was launched in November 2003. the Qu Dian system with a dedicated satellite constellation will provide real-time tactical communications and data transfer capabilities to PLA commanders to conduct effective joint operations. When fully deployed. modelled on the US JTIDS. China has been carrying out R&D on fundamental technologies applicable to ASAT weapons system since the 1960s. China has also embarked on an ambitious Positioning Navigation and Timing (PNT) programme based on Beidou satellites which is being touted as a regional competitor to the American GPS. In addition to communication satellites. Recent developments have seen a substantial improvement in Chinese remote-sensing capabilities with a gradual migration from film recovery systems to real-time digital data downlinks. The Chinese have concentrated their ASAT efforts in developing ground-based high energy lasers (HEL).

Chinese Space Doctrines From the aims and objectives of the Chinese space programme it is abundantly clear that the China considers its space capabilities as an irrefutable part of her national defence matrix and an essential part of battle planning. In the context of the Chinese offensive space warfare capabilities the events which led to the Shenzhou 7 controversy in 2008 are also noteworthy. if the need so arises. In addition to the famous ASAT test of 2007. This emphasis on ASAT systems is suggestive that China’s may be keen to develop have a long term capability to fight future space wars.S. this manoeuvre might have been part of a test of a new ASAT technology. Army Space and Missile Defense Command – “(China will be capable) of taking out a number of communications capabilities over a theater of war”. Four hours before Shenzhou’s point of closest approach to the space station. There was little margin for error. parasitic satellites. in August 2006. The spacecraft passed unusually close (45 km) to the International Space Station (ISS). Broadly in alignment with the western theories. In the words of Lt Gen Kevin Campbell. Another DoD reports suggest that China may also be developing systems to jam US navigation satellite signals.160 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 launched interceptor missiles. it launched 40 kg manoeuvrable microsatellite BX-1 which contained two cameras and communication gear. high power microwaves. China had fired high-power lasers at American intelligence satellites flying over its territory and caused disruption. At that time the $100 billion space station had two Russians and one American aboard. Chinese space warfare doctrines too fall in two broad categories:- . In formulating its own space doctrines. Many analysts speculated that keeping in mind China’s track record of using all Shenzhou missions since 1999 for dual military-civil role. commander of the U. micro-satellites and ‘hunter-killer’ satellites. Chinese military theorists have studied US and Soviet/Russian space doctrines on space war in detail in order to evolve their own thinking.

In the words of one of the leading Chinese space theorists. This doctrine entails development of offensive ASAT or SBSW (Space based strike weapons) and aims to control a part of outer space to use it for enhancing own operations and denying its use to the enemy. Maj Gen Liu Jixian of the Chinese Academy of Military Sciences. ♦ Force Enhancement Doctrine. In concept and execution Chinese theories seem to be influenced by the ‘High Ground’ or the ‘High Frontier’ doctrine of the Americans. While China has a substantial number of space assets deployed in this role.This includes what the Chinese military analysts call ‘Battlefield Combatting’ which is akin in concept and execution as the ‘Space control’ theory. Although China is developing and has developed capabilities to support both doctrines. This doctrine is more ‘peaceful’ or ‘defensive’ in nature and is geared towards exploiting space assets to support the conduct and execution of terrestrial operations. The Chinese call it ‘Information supporting’ and include activities like Intelligence. it seems to be set on a trajectory to graduate from mere force enhancement to space domination and control.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 161 ♦ High Ground Doctrine. This is perhaps the most common use of space assets for military purposes and by and large within the ambit of international space law.“Whoever controls space controls initiative in war”. positioning. navigation. the Chinese long-term interest in ASAT weapons and microsatellites is perhaps indicative that ‘High Ground’ space doctrine is acquiring prominence in Chinese strategic thought. China’s military theorists also view ASAT and offensive space capabilities as means to offset the . communications etc in its ambit. This theory is similar to Aerospace control and Sea control theories of terrestrial operations and seeks to control outer space in a similar fashion. This statement succinctly sums up the Chinese attitude to space warfare.

The Chinese thoughts on ‘sovereignty’ over space are also interesting. although this is not the official position of the Chinese establishment. While China is a signatory to most international conventions and protocols on space and subscribes to the theory that space is the ‘common heritage’ of mankind. It is well known that China has been sensitive to military reconnaissance of its landmass and EEZ by satellites and some Chinese analysts have compared reconnaissance to ‘battlefield preparation’.“Control of portions of outer space is a natural extension of other forms of territorial control” and “space control today is the way to guarantee the control of airspace…… and is an absolute necessity for conducting modern informationalised warfare”. These fears were further accentuated by the incident when satellite pictures of China’s new Jin class submarine which appeared on Google Earth on 5 Jul 07. This incident caused much consternation and breast beating in the PLA. China is also uneasy about US BMD developments and some Chinese writings state that “The US is trying to build a strategic external border in space”. Conclusion In conclusion it is obvious that PLA sees war in space as an integral part of military operations and advocates use of both offensive and defensive operations in outer space. Space is thus a key component of the Chinese . there are rumblings in the military establishment that could point to a possible change in the future. Some theorists advocate. Other analysts like Senior Col Zhang Zhiwei of Nanjing Army Command Academy argue that Space supremacy must be an integral part of other forms of supremacy over the battlefield.space be used to “carry out war between space platforms and to attack strategic surface and air targets”.162 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 asymmetric advantage enjoyed by the US. As a result some Chinese military theorists have started to argue that concept of national sovereignty be extended to outer space as well. In the words of one of the leading Chinese military space theorists Maj Gen Cai Fengzhen.

What are the real Chinese motives behind this rather surprising move remains a moot question.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 163 RMA and a crucial component of its national security strategy. Not only does China has a substantial space capability to support surface operations by way of navigation. but it is one of the few nations to have carried out a successful ASAT test in 2007. Others see it a form of ‘Legal Warfare’ consistent with the Chinese record of utilising international law to prevent its potential future competitors from acquiring similar capabilities. targeting. . post the ASAT test. China proposed a draft treaty on ‘Prevention of the Placement of Weapons in Outer Space and the Threat of Use of Force Against Outer Space Objects’ jointly with Russia. ISR etc. While some analysts see this as a change of heart prompted by the international outcry over the space debris created by the test which endangered many space objects. Interestingly.

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Some of these 24 Operational Plans are related to:(a) Mountain Warfare. Training gives an indication and is guided by the operational planning department of a country. ‘Many countries do train. air force. not to have nuclear retaliation . training patterns and philosophy behind People’s Liberation Army. Navy and Air Force would give some idea of what the Chinese Armed Forces themselves must be thinking about. as you will fight’.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 165 Session III : Discussion Issues Raised Do we know anything about PLA’s training patterns and philosophy? What are the PLA Navy and Air Force aiming for? Response Generally. Air Forces and Rocket Forces would be involved in counter attack campaigns to meet various contingencies. (e) How Chinese forces can conduct joint operations against landing forces? For example. The Chinese have published a book which mentions ‘24 Operational Plans’ and gives instructions as to how the China’s Army. infantry including air borne forces in a surprise attack. Navy. “to wait. (b) Cover for submarines to penetrate an island blockade of China. ‘Joint Nuclear Counter Attack Campaign’ indicates that the Chinese approach seems to be. They say the same thing. (c) How to eliminate enemy airfields in a surprise attack? (d) Joint missions by missile forces.

and that if China decides to follow the spirit of Confucius. In terms of money. and needs to maintain forces against amphibious landings by unnamed foreign countries. Issue Raised The Chinese nuclear strategy has been presented today in a very supplicative way. What kind of measures China itself can take in order to convince the entire world that they are very serious about a nuclear weapon free world? . China has also advocated and strenuously asked all the countries long ago to join NPT. China has earmarked $ 500 billion each for the PLA Navy and the Air Force – and more than that for the ground forces. Actually. it does give some idea about the Chinese training philosophy. arguing that the USA and Russia should take the lead in creating a nuclear weapon free world. Their focus on counter attacks suggests that. It also mentions how the PLA Navy and Air Force are involved in counter attack campaigns. but to wait for a period of days or upto a week” and this particular training campaign has to do with Second Artillery Forces. the American and Indian soft power should assure China that no foreign country has any aggressive attack plans against them. The fact that its Chief Editor is the former Director of Operations for the entire Chinese Armed Forces.166 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 within an hour or 15 minutes. they could devote all their money for solving numerous internal problems – which everyone is aware of. ‘China lives in a world of threats’ – one of the scenarios is ‘Counter Landing Campaigns’. The importance of this book can be realised fully only if its English translation is made. their ‘training scenarios’ frighten the rest of the world. China has identified a number of beaches that are perceived to be vulnerable. For them to acquire weapons to meet these training scenarios would be very expensive. On the other hand.

The Chinese have also shown their urgency by playing a constructive role in next year’s NPT Review Conference. However. China may not have gone far enough as yet.STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 167 Response China has taken some measures to indicate that they take the concept of nuclear weapon free world seriously. In the process of debate. The Chinese are right when their soft power projection says that. China can replace the USA as number one defence spender in the world in the next 20 years. According to Rand Corporation studies. China has already dropped some pre-conditions to put the treaty negotiations in Geneva at the Conference on Disarmament (CD) on the table. may be would do so now. because it is intended to persuade other countries to remain complacent. China’s defence spending is relatively low – 3 per cent of its GDP. The first one is about the CTBT and the second one is on fissile materials cut off treaty.5 to 3 per cent of GDP is quite low in comparison with other countries. not to engage in military planning or . all these measures have not yet resulted into concrete steps because majority of the Chinese nuclear arms controllers think that the USA should ratify the CTBT first and China will follow suit. especially at the next years NPT Review Conference. whereas the USA and Russia’s defence spending exceeded 30 per cent of their GDP.1. Issue Raised Is there any possibility for China to replace the USA to be the number one military budget country in the world in the next 10 to 20 years? Responses (a) The answer is ‘yes’. It is so. but. This is possible. Comparing defence budgets of other countries is always an ongoing exercise. their defence spending . Actually. some Chinese analysts do think that they ought to take the lead to ratify the CTBT as that would make it easier for Obama to persuade the US Senate to ratify the treaty.

but the possibility of something like 1962 happening again has to be taken into consideration by the strategic thinkers and planners. (c) Every country has a right to plan and prepare its forces to defend its territory. . seem to be low. They perforce have to keep track of overall Chinese military modernisation and to maintain pressure on DRDO to develop weapon systems indigenously. Therefore.168 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 weapons acquisition and also not take the rise of China’s military power as a serious matter. (d) Neighbouring and big countries are apprehensive about the Chinese military modernisation and have got a problem in assuaging the feeling of insecurity emanating from this phenomenon. As one speaker said yesterday. the military modernisation of China should not be branded as a threat. ‘China is always right’. it should continue to be assessed and discussed. So. This is the goal of soft power. The training has to include ‘low’ and ‘worst’ case scenarios. as of now. This is part of soft power. Although the chances of China hurting India. (b) But there is another important side to the case. It takes at least 10 years to prepare forces to meet the security challenges through operational goals and plans.

STRATEGIC CAPABILITY 169 Session III: Chairman’s Concluding Remarks It was my great pleasure to have chaired this session. . I am sure this discussion will help the strategic discourse. The five panellists have given us a great deal of knowledge from which the strategic community can learn much. We need more of these sessions to keep abreast with developments in the neighbourhood and the world.

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SIS Peking University Second Paper Vice Admiral Hideaki Kaneda (Retd) .REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE : BUILDING AN ENDURING POWER EQUATION IN ASIA FOURTH SESSION Chairman First Paper Shri K Raghunath. Japan Third Paper Professor Jaeho Hwang. IFS (Retd) Professor Han Hua . Korean Institute for Defence Analyses Fourth Paper Professor Sujit Dutta. Okazaki Institute. Jamia Milia University Discussion Closing Remarks Shri Shiv Shankar Menon. IFS Foreign Secretary .

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Our participant from India. Japan and Korea that we value their involvement in Track-II communication with us. First of all of course. the terminology – the word ‘rise’ which has been used very frequently here. I join the USI in welcoming all the members of the esteemed audience and the distinguished panellists. because it would be useful to do so. We value the contribution they have made in promoting cooperation.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 173 Session IV : Chairman’s Opening Remarks Ambassador K Raghunath First of all. I begin with a few preparatory remarks to reiterate some truisms which have been visited earlier. I would like to underline the fact that they are redoubtable experts in their own respective fields and have also been very articulate and active in educating the public in their own countries and also in communication with the outside world – the strategic community in other countries including India. I do not wish to pre-empt our Chinese friends but I do recognise from the literature on the subject and especially from what has been said in various fora by spokesmen from China that they would like to rectify this term in the old Confucian sense. I would leave this task to our . Professor Sujit Dutta is well known as a prominent member of the strategic community here in India. His presence here underlines the fact that he represents the growing interest in ‘China Studies’ in India. with respect to our participants from China. The point that our participants from abroad need to take note of is that China is a serious subject in India. I must also add. I would also like to join you in thanking USI for organising this very wide ranging and exhaustive seminar. understanding and goodwill both bilaterally and in the multilateral context.

So. conflict etc.174 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 friends from China but I would like to point out here that this term is actually a reflection of ‘perceptions’ only and it does not carry any particularly loaded connotation. For example. One is a very strong and inherent element of cooperation. The subject of this particular session is: ‘Regional Implications of China’s Rise and Building an Enduring Power Equation in Asia’. I hardly need add that both these aspects are conveyed or represented in the two different seminars – today’s and the one I referred to. and the other is disharmony. These are variations and two sides of the same coin. This is a truism. I think that is a good formula because we are really talking about an approach to building power equations.e. statesmanship really means cultivating all the possibilities and potential for cooperation and for partnership and at the same time taking a realistic view of the other aspect i. particularly in the regional context. and at the same time also an element of potential conflict. partnership. has two dimensions. I am putting it very simply but this is a very difficult task. which is covered in the term ‘Power Equations’. harmony. interdependence if you like. I underline this point because in this particular seminar there is a focus on one specific aspect. in this region. especially given the proximity and the neighbourhood factor in a regional onslaught. ICWA seminar talked about ‘Prospects for Partnership’. That is important because this terminology was also chosen deliberately and meant to convey some meanings. dependence of course. idealism without illusions. so you may interpret that word in any other way. tension. confrontation. It’s a shorthand code-word. but in the context of regional power equations and regional cooperation it needs to be said that any relationship whether bilateral or multilateral. They are actually complementary. This particular rubric in some fashion has been replicated in seminars held in this city a few days ago and some of the worthies who organised these seminars are either present or were present in this hall yesterday. In order to build a stable and dynamic kind of power equation you need really to make sure that the first of these two dimensions is maximised and the second is minimised. which is devoid of .

history and other such factors. because unless we do this. It is significant that there is a growing preoccupation with bringing about an architecture of regional security and cooperation in our part of the world. and taking into account the neighbourhood location. It is unfortunately the case that we need to address the ‘security’ aspect independently of anything else and it has to be done. it certainly helps to moderate the climate and creates a milieu for cooperation. Before I conclude. This is a thought that I would like to leave with you. . we are losing something in terms of realising the national potential. i. Just as well. We presume that they are taken in good faith most of the time. This is doable and in fact that is really the task ahead for all those who are involved in advancing or promoting regional cooperation. Once we face that reality then we are on good ground and that is why this particular seminar is important. But this is not a sufficient condition. We need to understand : Why things are not necessarily shaping the way they should at a given point of time? This is the question that has to be answered. If you compare it with the aspect of ‘cooperation’. Seminars like this itself underlines the point. in substantive areas. I want to flag a few points about. and also devoid of obsessive real politic. On the positive side. the basic requirements are: (a) Understanding and respecting the legitimate national aspirations and national interests of every big and small country and also the specific circumstances of each country would enable us to understand why certain decisions are taken. What needs to be done? These general principles would also draw attention to something that the panellists would be addressing.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 175 both extremes of utopianism.e. There is one more aspect which needs attention. economic cooperation and other types of functional cooperation. This refers to the title of this session – ‘Enduring Power Equation’. With good faith and vision these things can be done.

yes. applies to security and to power equations and to cooperation. I would underline here that anyone who believes that terrorism in one part of the world or in one part of a region is the problem peculiar to that part of the region is asking for trouble. provided we are aware that some of the old constructs like ‘balance of power’. Secondly. that security is not related to the military dimension alone – comprehensive national strength. it is a positive state of being and that is what one looks for. the economic aspect. there are other security related aspects not excluding disarmament (including nuclear disarmament).176 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (b) Equal legitimate security at a minimal possible cost. (c) ‘Power Equation’. There would be some specific questions which would be addressed by the panelists e. (d) The fact is that all of us face common challenges – regional challenges. But health is not merely freedom from illness and disease. who are the . but the ‘military-political’ aspect is important. That is what is going to be focused on here. all very valid concepts. comprehensive national security. (e) It is a well known principle. the idea of a ‘dominant power’. human welfare and so on. culture. (f) The WHO definition of health. ecology and other problems like natural disasters. Terrorism is one of them. A heavy price would have to be paid for that kind of approach. ‘spheres of influence’. is not condemned to repeat all the mistakes of Europe.g. Dynamic and stable equilibria and relations in which problems are discussed consensually are important. But we have to eschew some of the crimes and follies of the 19th Century which led to terrible catastrophes. ‘the great game’. There has to be a conscious effort to factor them out and do something else. global challenges which bind us together. Asia. are all outmoded.

All the points that I have mentioned have been examined and discussed threadbare during this particular seminar yesterday.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 177 powers we are talking about? There are some countries which are not clearly defined as being Asian. new insights are always welcome and they are needed. Then the role of Track-II dialogue is extremely important. Australia and New Zealand. This search for truth helps us to move from one state to the other. In that spirit. I am sure this seminar. There are others in Oceania. this question I hope will be addressed when we talk about power equations. Russia. However. I would like to invite the panelists to proceed with their presentations. where do they fit in. So. . I think this is a matter of definition because the term Asia itself has to be looked at carefully. through the wisdom. expertise and experience of our panellists would add to the stock of awareness or the storehouse of solutions that we might have. The USA of course is a case in point.

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REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 179 Session IV : First Paper Professor Han Hua {This presentation is limited to the speaker’s observations based on discussion in earlier sessions} Presently. other countries around it or other areas feel threatened. How should it balance against these threats in two directions? The thinkers have faith in the Chinese wisdom. How they would do that would be meaningful for China. it feels that the USA is a strategic challenge and most pressures come from the US side. That is why China’s rise has implications for other regions. but they would need to learn more about diplomacy to resolve this dilemma. China feels sandwiched between a established power like the USA and its neighbours on the other side. the established powers and neighbours should also review their approach towards the rising power. but at the same time. “you can choose the way you live but you cannot choose where you are staying or located”. China is facing a ‘security dilemma’. It is indeed very . China has the most number of neighbouring states around it. The Chinese say. Sometimes. How to reassure both sides. China’s policy is made by their overall evaluation of the international environment. is a very challenging job. – which may not be limited only to East Asia and South Asia or South East Asia. It has to prepare for these challenges but at the same time there is a feeling that if Chinese do something to upgrade their capabilities. about its thinking and security intentions. The second point about the rise of China is that dealing with a rising power is not a one way solution. China needs a peaceful environment for sustaining its economic development. Although China should do something to decrease threat perceptions and sensitivities of other countries.

China tries its best to reassure its neighbours and other countries that its rise would be peaceful in the 21st Century. They do have civilian control over the military. . But. Perhaps. at the same time. Therefore. Military is only part of the overall policy making community in China and China is not a militarily controlled country. or may be in other countries like India too.180 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 challenging for China to take into consideration the sensitivities and perspectives of so many neighbouring countries. We do not think Chinese military dominates decision making – that is for sure. they have civilian culture. The third point is about China’s strategic capabilities and overall military capability build up. Hu Jintao is the only one chief military commander – the rest are non military officers. China is a responsible power. the military people tend to talk more about. The policies are made by the leadership or working groups and not by the military. You should note that in China’s nine member Standing Committee. They have to prepare for the worst scenario but at the same time there is another Chinese saying. “you have to prepare for the worst but at the same time you have to pursue the most favourable outcome”. worst case scenarios. this is not what you would like to hear. How the military thinks about its role and probable postures? In China.

A sea lane does not end in a ‘Single Region’. i. specially in Malacca and Singapore Straits. the USA as well as regional countries should note that ‘multilateral cooperation’ would be ‘vital for SLOC’. (c) Disputes over territories in South China Sea. Security of SLOC should be considered based on the concept of ‘Broad Sea Lanes’ protection. (b) Rapid build-up of the Chinese Military Power. (d) Maritime interests in the vicinity of Japan – dispute with China in East China Sea. Broad Sea Lanes . (f) International Terrorism and Piracy. (e) Proliferation of WMD and Ballistic Missiles. ‘String of Pearls’. Not only security but regional economy and stability also depend on security of SLOC.e. The observations on ‘Rising Importance of Sea Lanes’ will cover the following aspects:(a) Confrontation in Korean peninsula and across Taiwan straits. East China Sea and other places. “Security of sea Lanes” is a common key word in discussing all these issues.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 181 Session IV: Second Paper Mr Hideaki Kaneda This paper covers military and naval matters related to multilateral cooperation for Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC) security. Japan. (g) Organised illegal activities at sea and the ‘Strategic Chinese bases in the Vital Sea Lanes’.

becomes vital as ‘lifelines’ to meet security and economic needs of the ‘Unified Region’. there are emerging needs for multilateral cooperation between reliable and likeminded maritime powers to ensure the security of BSL in expanded Asia. Japan. Therefore.182 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 (BSL) running through the Indian Ocean. The US Department of Defence (DoD) announced enhancement of security cooperation with India which included maritime security in 2006. and also Mr Singh’s meeting with Mr Obama in Nov 2009. Maritime security partnership between Japan-India-US (JIUS) is a key to the relationships. So far there is no formal ‘trilateral’ security arrangement between them. Obama and Hatoyama have assured of a ‘tight and equal relationship’ in their core role for security of BSL because of high expectations from Japan and the USA. Earlier the USA referred to it as ‘an arc of instability’. the USA and Australia would be important players. There has been . The core maritime power would be centred around Japan as well as the USA in the North and East. Now let us take a look at the historical relationships amongst the related countries. via Asia-Pacific to the Oceania or South Pacific in expanded Asia. Defence cooperation guidelines in the same year set a new framework for India-US defence relationship which included the maritime domain also. It was followed by meeting between Mr Manmohan Singh and Mr Gates in 2008. The Indian Ocean has strategic importance across the world. it should now be changed to read as ‘an arc of inseparability’. The deepening and widening of the Japan-US alliance was assured and confirmed at the recent visit of Mr Obama to Japan. and in the East-West-South Expanded Asia. First is the long Japan-US maritime alliance. Each of these countries recognises the need for cooperation on security of SLOC in East-West expanded Asia. India. From the Japanese perspective a global partnership has been formed through the India-US relationship since the meeting between President Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2005. which is viewed as a ‘core’ military alliance.

Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama’s visit to India is also planned towards the end of 2009. In the North-West expanded Asia. Even though Japan. Japan. the US-Australia alliance is akin to blood relationship. They had the first trilateral summit in Syndey in 2007. The new US administration has confirmed bilateral policy. In 2009 the Indian destroyer which participated in the Chinese International Review. Substantial joint agreements / statements have been published to give new dimension to the road map of strategic global partnership. Recently. Amongst bilateral relationships. Former Prime Minister Fukuda pushed his Trilateral Strategic Dialogue and the Australian Prime Minister Rudd confirmed the unchanged positive attitude towards it. Japan and the USA urged security cooperation with Australia and India at the ‘2+2’ Ministerial Meeting in 2007. 2007 and 2008. New Zealand and United States Security Treaty (ANZUS) are maritime alliances which strengthen the fabric of peace in the Asia Pacific. Japanese Minister of Defence Katazawa and Indian Defence Minister Anthony have also met. It is based on common values of freedom and democracy. The main feature of Japan-India relationship is a partnership of historical sympathy. had a good exercise with Japan to which the USA was also invited. on it’s way back after that. the USA and Australia do not have any treaty arrangements but they do have Trilateral Semi-Alliance and several cooperative security activities. Australia. Fukuda and Aso with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2006. US (JAUS) have a maritime alliance. these have been followed up by two joint statements on security cooperation by Japanese Prime Ministers Abe.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 183 a substantial increase in cooperation through maritime exercises such as ‘Malabar’ in 2007. Australian-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) and Australian. During Nov 2009. . Many cooperative exercises were held in 2007 and 2008. which included the P3-C’s Exercises in 2007.

Both countries have substantial cooperation and conduct frequent joint exercises since 1996. Quadrilateral Maritime Cooperation is difficult instantly. What is Maritime Security Coalition? It must be a nation to nation coalition with a common objective – to maintain and secure safe and free use of ‘ocean’s sea lanes’ from the peacetime to emergency situations. BMD. They have historical ties for cooperation on regional and global security issues to facilitate interoperability which includes missile defence. anti-terrorism etc. Since then Ministerial Security Meetings have continued. Network of activities based on ‘common values’ – common value must be a key word in such interactions. JIUS Maritime Security partnership and JAUS Maritime Semi-alliance should take responsibilities appropriate to their national power as major stakeholders of maritime security coalition with other democratic maritime powers for security of Broad Sea Lanes – JIUS in East West and JAUS in North South expanded Asia. Is it possible to get a strong breakthrough on development of defence cooperation? Refer to Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Stephen Smith’s statement in February 2008.184 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 on issues such as Iraq. They share a strong maritime partnership based on democratic values. responsibility of each nation proportionate to its national situation and capacity. on security around China. a Memorandum on Japan-Australia Defence Cooperation was signed. . from Howard to Rudd. However. not a treaty. Australia is reshaping its policy toward India. Next is the Japanese perspective on India-Australia relations. JIUS and JAUS trilateral cooperation would be possible in the future. In 2008. but maritime coalition based on strong mutual trust. There is also increasing defence cooperation in Iraq and international Disaster Relief Operations (DRO). Japan-Australia is not an alliance but a semi-alliance. There was a joint declaration on security cooperation between Abe and Mr Howard in 2007.

Former Prime Minister Aso talked of ‘Arc of freedom and prosperity’. ‘synergy’ with Japan-US Alliance and ‘diplomacy’ towards Asia. The current prime minister . Former Prime Minister Abe said ‘the coalition of nations is based on common values. security interests. Broad Maritime Security Coalition should eventually develop towards global stage – Japan’s BMSC Initiative coincides with Japan’s Diplomatic Policy. India’s policy of ‘more cooperation with others in maritime domain’ was stated by Admiral Sureesh Mehta. and third one is ‘identity’.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 185 What should be the pre-condition for Maritime Security Coalition? It should be possible to share three basic interests in the maritime domain with others. towards constituting BMSC in the whole expanded Asia in the future. It would be expected of the member countries that their actions are guided by democratic norms and based on the concept of public good and service to others. second would be ‘prosperity’ i. Japan’s active interest in improving international security is addressed in the National Defence Programme Guidelines (NDPG) which is like QDR in the USA. May be. JIUS Maritime Security Coalition in East-West expanded Asia should be tied up with JAUS Maritime Security Coordination in North-South expanded Asia. rescue and conservation of environment/resources in maritime domain. Each member of JIUS or JAUS would stand for maritime security of the four coalition countries and would be eager to do so in a positive manner. Australia’s ‘Stronger Security Partnership with others’ is stated in Defence White Paper 2009. First is ‘existence’ i. economic interests. The main subject is ‘Broad Maritime Security Coalition (BMSC)’. The USA’s willingness for ‘more cooperation with others’ in Global Maritime Partnership was confirmed by Admiral Roughead. Likeminded democratic countries would not have disputes over maritime sovereignty or interests and would adhere to international norms in resolving problems in a fair manner.e. that would include the South Pacific island nations or such countries also. restoration.e. Common values that would interest all are: disaster relief. Former Prime Minister Fukuda said.

There is much food for thought here. Capacity building and humanitarian support by Japan and other countries is essential. are needed. We need to constitute the JIUS and JAUS Maritime Security Coalition with democratic power groups in East-West and North-South expanded Asia. . Chairman’s Remarks Thank you Admiral Kaneda for your very comprehensive and in depth treatment of a very specific and important aspect of the security structures and security arrangements in our region. Coordinating soft maritime cooperation by every coastal state including China is important in addition to existing regional cooperative agreements: Asian Regional Forum (ARF). Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS). We need deep cooperation with ASEAN countries because it is the geographic centre of expanded Asia. Strait of Malacca is vital as a choke point. ‘Fraternity. diplomacy and East Asia community’. not only for Admirals but for all of us who are engaged with this idea of promoting stable structures of cooperation and security in this region. Some of them are reliable democratic maritime powers whereas others have relatively weaker navy and coast guards. or Japan’s new initiative in East West community support.186 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Hatoyama said. Aiming for unification of 2+2 or specific security channels might be suitable. Western Pacific Naval Symposium (WPNS). Illegal activity in the vast waters including island areas needs to be checked. if we have to make the coalition succeed. These are very important things for us. Many strategic or regional policy frameworks.

The topic of my presentation today is. ‘An explanation of South Korea’s policy towards China’. We are now thinking about questions of what sort of air we breathe and in what kind of climate we must live in. how has the world framework changed? Second. by 2025 the international order is expected to change into a multi-polar power shift. First. and finally. such as South Korea. This also signifies the sharing of mutual concerns amongst countries around the world . ‘Need for long term changes to the framework’. the second. The rise of China has come to dominate South Korean way of thinking. It is evident from frequent references to the expression ‘the G2 era’ that we are now witnessing the coming of US-China ‘Bipolar era’. but. what are the strategy implications for South Korea’s security. We can predict the possibility of China becoming a super power in a future time . May be. ‘South Korea’s perspective on China’s rise’. with the USA and China as core countries. Perhaps. given China’s rise? The first is. that is shoulder to shoulder with the USA? South Korea is no exception. just 15 years from now. There are basically three questions. can China become the world’s number one superpower? Third. the ‘Rise of China’ is not a matter of ‘if’ but a reality of ‘when’ that happens! Climate change is becoming a hot agenda for international community and the issue has already unravelled in South Korea’s security environment.How to respond to this China. some states may not agree with this logic. not looking as far ahead as the year 2050. ‘Prospects and the immediate short term changes’.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 187 Session IV : Third Paper Professor Jaeho Hwang The hot topic during President Obama’s recent visit to Asia was ‘China’s Rise’. Even China itself denies the use of expression G2. However for China’s neighbours.

economic and security obstacles. However. in place of the USA. By 2025. it would attain the state of quasi-superpower by 2025.188 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 frame but not by the year 2025. First. Harmony is regarded as the universal value of global order and is dependent on soft power. we need to examine short term changes in the framework. However. voices calling for new system will rise. Both countries are moving towards . China was busy consolidating its regional influence. Theoretically. will be very fierce. In the short term. If China’s ‘harmonious world’ lasts for the next three years and if Obama’s policy initiatives fail to show results. the competition with the USA and Japan on one side and China on the other side. a country aspiring to become a superpower must meet three criteria – capability. Both nations established diplomatic relations in 1992. the USA is reconfiguring policy on better lines now. will and recognition. China and Korea have a very close relationship in various areas such as politics. Prime Minister Hatoyama’s ‘fraternity’ diplomacy may bring another chance for Japan’s new diplomatic initiative. The country that could have played the part of competing with China. To reach that state China would have to overcome several political. just last year. This is a new chance for the US initiative. The Obama Administration is strengthening cooperation with powers and allies and even extending hand to hostile countries. Hu Jintao’s diplomatic strategy is ‘harmonious world’. Bush’s diplomacy weakened cooperation between major powers. Together with long term predictions. Japan did not exert its presence. culture and security. The status was elevated to ‘strategic cooperative partnership’. The international community is welcoming and embracing President Obama. and it’s diplomacy lacked initiative and creative ideas. While the USA was disinterested. was Japan. China would probably fail to meet all three. However. economy. for having an influence over the regional countries. China’s ‘harmonious world’ benefited relatively speaking from the US indifference and lack of interest in the region during the Bush period and it has been successful so far. allies and friendly nations.

Korea would like to maintain a strategic cooperative partnership with China and a multilateral security framework. (vii) Will the USA maintain its alliance commitments indefinitely? (viii) Most importantly. In the . to what extent will China support or oppose reunification? In the long term. When a new government comes into office in the year 2013. However. whether to make a strategic shift but to recongise the changing framework. what would be China’s role in the process of Korea’s reunification i. It may be unwise to narrow down the range of our own options. For the time being Korea’s future national strategy will keep the ‘alliance’ relationship with the USA. it is possible that the relationship will again be elevated to a greater status in the year 2013.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 189 more mature relations. an important matter for South Korea is not. We must pay attention to at least eight considerations that may influence the future Sino-Korean relationship:(i) (ii) Is China’s rise today a reality? Will China surpass the USA in the future? (iii) What are the contents of Sino-US relations? (iv) What kind of power will China be – hegemonic or benign? (v) Regional countries’ policies towards China. (vi) China’s position on historical disputes.e. Korea’s choosing China would be a risk. Considering that South Korea’s short term China policy has been to elevate the relationship every five years. South Korea will take into account all mid to long term factors and its possibilities. However. the two states might consider a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership. At the time when China itself keeps Pyong Yong strategy with the USA. Here a favourable posture by the USA and China on the Korean peninsula will become a critical factor for South Korea.

South Korea’s diplomacy must be extremely flexible. We will have to study these very carefully. This is the kind of exercise that all countries in this region need to do. This represents a psychological red line. Korea must enhance its image as a democratic State by contributing to the international society. First. . it must become a middle power. Second. However. since South Korea is an Asian state. He has done so in a very scientific manner. as a stronghold for North East Asia. Chairman’s Remarks You will note that Professor Hwang has entered the interesting realm of futurology as a prognosis. with a capacity to influence international consensus. Korea will need to employ multi-dimensional diplomacy. Probabilities have been examined and the pronouncements made by him are very sound. Korea’s China policy would not change too much because of reasons such as economic relations and the North Korean nuclear issue.190 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 next few years. ROK-US alliance will be a decisive factor in improving SinoSouth Korean relations. In order to maximise South Korea’s strategic value and to strengthen diplomatic competitive power. and how it is likely to develop. This will reinforce South Korea’s strategic value. it must focus on its relations with other Asian states. He has also given us a kind of update on China and ROK relations and how it has progressed. Third.

has now become $ 2. which China had deliberately chosen. from the Chinese perspective. GDP.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 191 Session IV : Fourth Paper Professor Sujit Dutta My presentation will focus more on politico-strategic issues rather than military issues – hard questions that shape China’s rise and its relationship with the rest of Asia. There are three or four basic points that shape and reflect the implications of China’s rise for Asia. Defined in terms of neighbourhood. It is essentially seen in terms of its periphery. It sees itself as great power with all kinds of capabilities. That is an outcome of the previous 30 years of reform. South-East and Central Asia. China’s role in the international system has changed dramatically since 1978-79 when the reforms began. Foreign capital is deeply involved in China and it has now become a central part of the process that runs the world economy in many ways. China does not see itself as Japan. it will cover North-East.6 trillion which is about 11 times growth – quite stupendous in terms of purely economic terms. It has added to. China’s overall strategy is to become a great power and a pre-eminent power in . which was about $ 200 billion in 1978-79. It has brought huge gains. That is the kind of milieu in which China’s power is rising and that is the kind of milieu on which it will have direct influence as its power grows. As a result of that. structural context has come about where China is deeply embedded now in the global supply chains – interdependence has been created. Asia would be the way China sees it. into their overall ‘Comprehensive National Power’. Therefore. East. Globalisation has benefitted China and it has deliberately chosen the path of globalisation as part of its reform strategy. a new kind of economic. the linkages with the West and Japan meant that.

have their own dynamics. Americans opened the doors to make possible China’s entry into the global . the reforms are in a way a strategy to achieve it. That is clear. Therefore. others who also are either great powers currently or aspire to be one? Principally. the Chinese relationships with these four countries are critically important as it seeks to become a great power. etc. its civilisational length. Russia. China’s current reforms and globalisation strategy and growth would not have been possible without the US and Japanese help. The question is: When China tries to become a great power what does it mean to the others who are around it. all these powers have helped to make China’s rise possible. as far as China is concerned. the globalisation of China. which is a dominant power and Japan. This has raised dilemmas for them. No one can deny that China given its size. Chinese strategies have to constantly figure out as to how their goal setting affects the national ambitions and goals of these four countries. Therefore. weakened substantially but nonetheless a power that sees itself as a major Eurasian entity. Essentially. four countries are directly affected in this context. and finally India. Whether there would be tensions within these goals is something that is critically important. and the kind of structures and ideologies that others bring to the table. The USA has been a reference point constantly.192 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Asia – a possible peer competitor with the United States. they all head towards attaining great power status as early as possible. it’s entry into different institutions. Despite the tensions and historical problems that have existed in many of these relationships. its security context. From the Chinese political strategic point of view. which is an ally of the USA and a neighbour of China – is directly affected by long years of tussle and tensions. its vision of itself. The USA. should become an ultimate power – that is not the question. How much to build? What happens with the nature of American defence expenditure? How much China’s defence expenditure should be? These are questions that flow from that kind of goal setting which is to become a peer competitor at some point and to become a greater power.

REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 193 system. it is very important to maintain stability. Because of intended linear projection of power aggrandisement. There is a second element to it which is normative in nature. China’s surge for global power status must keep in mind the interest and the context in which this engagement is taking place. We all know that there are two strands of traditional Chinese strategic culture – the Confucian . particularly because. The US-China rapprochement was critical to that success and Japan’s aid. over time. because it follows from ideological and strategic cultures. Russians have increasingly helped the Chinese modernisation process. and Japan and China. But India continued to support China’s entry in Security Council. It did not make much sense. Many other examples can be given. in which their mutual interests have become integrated and because of globalisation and international cross-border economic linkages. Japan are democracies and in terms of sovereignty – there are problems that exist between India and China. It began during Gorbachev’s time itself. will have very different implications. even when the relations were at rock bottom. India. If China continues to surge for equality in terms of military expenditure and other capabilities with the USA it will have a direct implication for the overall stability of this relationship. A comparative defence expenditure kind of viewpoint on missile count and other considerations like dominance of the sea. etc. India accepted Tibet as a part of China when the boundary issue was not settled. played a very important role as well. India has been a constant supporter of China’s entry into the international system – even when our relations were balanced in terms of realist politics. It would complicate and make China’s overall strategic environment far more difficult. post-1978-79. In a situation where these powers are currently engaging China in order to shape the international environment. Pursuing this line of thinking will lead to a set of consequences.. there are significant differences between these four countries – The USA. after the Soviet Union collapse. mutual tensions between these countries have the potential of getting out of hand.

They seem to us to fit into the theory. its opposition to the major powers. there are others within the Chinese establishment. That is a tactical line rather than a fundamental change in mindset and orientation of ideological position. which are not in alliance with a major power. and the other towards the smaller entities. however. have received far more accommodation from the Chinese. However. . It is real politic strategic culture that has dominated Chinese thinking. There are problems relating to how others perceive the ‘peaceful rise’ theory or the current theory of ‘harmonious world’ order. Major powers. in China’s approach towards the McMahon Line vis-à-vis Burma and India. In the context of a normative culture of realism. especially within the military and the political establishment. the realist point of view still holds the dominant position.194 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 and the real politic. in order to make cooperation with the outside world possible. The smaller entities. although. even though post-Mao years have seen significant modification. the dominant culture appears to be still rooted in realism. Nonetheless. Given the fact. ‘bide your time’. This stand remains. ‘Comprehensive National Power’ and its comparison with the others constantly figure within the strategic community’s thinking. This is visible. One that takes into account. means that approaches towards them are to be shaped through a competitive lens. who would like to see increasingly liberalised policies to take place. It can be divided into two. is constantly on the mind of the Chinese. a competitive ‘balance of power’ approach. Clear discriminatory policy orientations have significantly distorted and created new conditions for difficult relationships. Therefore. for example. In that sense. real politic thinking seems to be on tactical lines rather than strategic long term belief changes. There are significant debates taking place within China on this. A third element is China’s policy towards its neighbours in Asia. Ideological change in norms and strategy thinking is essential for establishing a great power and peace over the coming years. are treated differently and in a far more competitive manner. four important countries have a difficult history with China.

India-China relations. . there were certain benchmarks. But underlying them are significant tensions. India-China relations are currently based on the 1988 decision to open a new chapter during Rajiv Gandhi’s visit to China. and to a large extent replicated by China. Japan-China relations have turned around – they are now the largest trade partners. This has become now a lietmotif in Chinese diplomacy.e. ‘keeping the interests of settled populations in mind’ which essentially referred to the Arunachal question. was to maintain long term stability in that relationship.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 195 It should not be said that. since 1988 when the principles were signed. If they are not managed properly. One of the principles was. continuously some tensions have emerged. Those policies have brought great benefits to the two countries. They were however. Despite that in the last few years. That is mainly because. One of the elements of that was ‘confidence building measures’ i. while this framework has worked well. Nonetheless. That has now become a flashpoint because the Chinese do not want to have the ‘settled population theory’ being interpreted in terms of India’s sovereignty over Arunachal Pradesh. The hope continues to build-up on maintaining a long term India-China stable relationship. We must take note of the positive changes that have taken place in each of these relationships vis-à-vis China. ever. The territorial problems have become even more important. The essential goal as far as India is concerned. not clearly stated. since 1988 rapprochement. lowering of tensions. as China’s power grows further. the elements of dispute resolution. have flowered despite difficulties. and the other ‘enhancing stakes in each other’s economy’. have been stymied. peace and tranquility on the border as boundary talks continue to resolve the disputes that exist. In 2005 some basic principles were again signed. The US-China interaction is recognised as a fundamental relationship of the world. and Chinese students are now studying in Japan. that should have moved along simultaneously. there is a likelihood of a different pathway which could be conflictual in nature. changes in relationships have not taken place.

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There is one fundamental problem that the Chinese strategic thinkers and diplomats seem to forget. India’s recognition of Tibet as part of China will become null and void if China says Arunachal is Southern Tibet. India cannot wish away its own sovereignty in order to accept Tibet as part of China. So, India’s recognition is inbuilt. India’s recognition of Tibet, as part of China, can only be meaningful if Arunachal is not considered Southern Tibet. If China continues to mention that Arunachal is Southern Tibet, then the 1954 position goes. The 1954 position in legal terms does not exist. It died in 1962, because that treaty was eight years old. In many ways the Chinese have opened up a Pandora’s box by returning to historical questions that were already settled. It has complicated the India-China boundaries settlement further in a manner that the current diplomats and the political class have not realised. The second element was, meaningful strategic thinking on the Tibetan issue. Both on Taiwan and Tibet, one of the principle of ‘re-look’ is necessary – as far as China is concerned. Because while sovereignty has been accepted by the world, in de facto terms ‘Taiwan is independent’ and in de facto terms the ‘Tibetans are in exile’. Without reaching a deal and an agreement, resolution of the problem is not going to be possible. On the resolution of this hinges great power relationships significantly. In US-China and Japan-China relationships the Taiwan factor is very much central and Tibet question is central to India-China relationship. ‘Re-look’ on some of these relationships is essential. Political change and ideological make-up regarding old sovereignty stances belonging to pre-colonial and imperial days, cannot be translated into sovereignty control today without accepting the vision, support and will of the people. Therefore, a significant amount of rethink by the strategic community, as far as China’s position and the Chinese strategy are concerned is necessary. Keeping China’s relations with Pakistan vis-à-vis India out of the purview of this presentation, it is important to look at: How China wants to

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shape the strategic environment in South Asia? For example, understanding the consequences of China undermining India’s security agreement with Nepal needs a serious study. Without understanding the implications of historical arrangements, there is a likelihood of the relationships getting more complicated. From here onwards, China has two choices – two pathways. One is to change its notion of becoming a ‘great power’ through capability building, as well as normative structure build-ups that flow from that kind of old strategic thinking. It needs to carry out a ‘re-think’ on them. If it does not, then there would be one path that would go towards increasing tension and conflictual relations with the other great powers. It may possibly, due to mutual security concerns, lead to a quasi alliance between the USA and India – that could be one pathway. The other pathway would require serious thinking, based on current interdependencies that have already been created – in which all the other great powers are willing to cooperate and engage China and move towards it; rather than adopting unilateral policy postures for unilateral gains. Interdependence would have to be rooted in shared gains, not unilateral gains.

Chairman’s Remarks
Thank you Professor Dutta for a very lucid and wide ranging presentation. You have attempted to cover the larger picture – a wide sweep that complements the very specific and directed presentations from the other three panelists. The candour with which certain issues have been put on the floor, especially those relating to India-China relations, need attention of all. In an academic discussion, this kind of candour is necessary. These issues are up for ‘discussion’ and have to be studied through considered research based on a process which would lead to conclusions. That is the conclusion of the presentations by the four panelists. I must compliment

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and thank our esteem panellists for the kind of gravity and remarkable way in which they took on their tasks.

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Session IV : Discussion
Issues Raised
In case China implodes, what kind of political system is likely to emerge? What will be the impact of such political changes on China’s projected rise in future?

Responses
(a) In China, people are talking about the political direction the country should take, particularly after the collapse of the Soviet Union and Russia giving up on their Communist political ideology. There is a debate on as to what kind of democracy China should follow. They are, however, certain that it would not be western type democracy – like in Hong Kong, Singapore or other parts of the world. They have not yet made up their minds on the choice of alternatives that would suit the Chinese situation. The Chinese common sense is aware that economic growth and political stability would continue to add to their Comprehensive National Power. (b) The Chinese leadership has been managing the requirement of future reforms very well. They have established a ‘successor mechanism’ through a coalition among entrepreneurs, politicians and the military, which enjoys popular support. They will not pursue western style political reforms, but are confident of maintaining economic growth and political stability in the near future. (c) China’s peaceful economic and military rise is complementary and would continue to grow to fulfill Chinese aspirations in the 21st Century.

that would be critically important. In the 21st Century liberal milieu the world needs to know whether the military oriented Communist Party administration would pursue hard line policies or it would choose to have some different kind of identity to conform to current trends on human rights issues. Nonetheless. because perception of the world about. It would certainly be linked to ‘China’s rise as a great power’. Issue Raised What will be the role of ethnic minorities in China’s pursuit of becoming a great power? Response The way China deals with the Uigurs. In matters related to security the PLA is free to voice their views for consideration by the CMC. Tibetans and the Taiwanese is slightly different in each case. but the final decision on all matters is taken by the Standing Committee of the Polit Bureau. The Standing Committee comprising of nine members is at the top end of the decision making system. . whether China would be a responsible power would be determined on the kind of political arrangements it works out with them. it is the Polit Bureau which is at the top and not the CMC.200 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Issues Raised Are there any changes in the composition of the China Military Commission (CMC) headed by Hu Jintao as the Chairman? Do the high ranking PLA members form a part of the Central Committee also? What role does the PLA play in strategic policy decision making? Response In China’s political system.

it is sensitive to any action that undermines Chinese position related to its sovereignty and integrity. Unlike parts of Aksai Chin. The reason this has become such an issue is because the Chinese feel that they are losing their position on their claim on account of democratic politics in Arunachal Pradesh. (iii) No supporting of the Xinxiang rebellion forces. Unlike in the past. That is the reason they are stressing their point publicly and in the Asian Development Bank. (ii) No meeting with Dalai Lama. which are not inhabited. The problems. Since China treats Tibet as a central issue. The ambiguities were a result of lack of agreement as consensus could not be achieved. In terms of democratic politics it is ‘non-negotiable’. however. (b) With regard to territorial disputes. the whole situation has to be seen in terms of population and not territory alone. Arunachal including Tawang. China accepts some points raised by the Indian side. Whenever high ranking Chinese officials interact with other countries during their visits. Therefore. they clearly talk about three No’s in Chinese policy :(i) No transfer of weapons to Taiwan. have arisen because recently Indian side has taken some steps such as the visit of the Prime Minister to Arunachal and allowing the Dalai Lama to visit the area.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 201 Issue Raised How should India interpret the bellicose statements being made by China in recent months? Why is China making such statements against India? Responses (a) In the last four years the Arunachal question has come back to the forefront because of the ‘ambiguities’ that were left in the 2005 Principles. is a settled area with citizens of India living there. an ‘imperial’ change of territory cannot take place today. .

there is a possibility of China becoming a likeminded country alongwith Japan and India. what would be China’s reaction to such an arrangement? Responses (a) Under normal circumstances a few countries. Such cooperation would come easily for common good. However. So far. . (b) China’s naval ships entered the Indian Ocean Region for antipiracy missions and to counter piracy in maritime area near Somalia. China has proposed a plan to take care of specific areas but it has not got similar response from other countries as yet. Russia. India and South Korea are conducting anti-piracy activities. may come together to share the common goal of protecting Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC) through anti-piracy actions in outer Somalia or Gulf of Aden. arrange to come together to keep out the ‘Super Power of 2025’ from the arrangements to safeguard trade routes in the Indian Ocean. That kind of arrangement would work satisfactorily only amongst likeminded countries who share common values and international standards for resolving conflicting interests and issues. Japan. In the foreseeable future. Another issue in this context would be the requirement of financial support for conducting such missions across the Indian Ocean from the Gulf of Aden to Malacca Straits. even if they are not likeminded. the Chinese decision makers are not sure what to do next. The Chinese realise the urgency and see it as an opportunity to go outside the waters around China. The objective of China’s naval activity in this area is very limited. they have not figured out their ‘two-ocean’ strategy as yet.202 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 Issue Raised If three likeminded nations Japan-India-USA (JIUS). China. it would not be possible to get such cooperation from every country in the region to meet unforeseen emergency situations. However.

India has made two fundamental concessions on the table. Issue Raised China wants its neighbours to keep talking and solve the problems through constant dialogue. it is always talking from a position of strength and not equality. there would be times when crisis can emerge – especially when the territorial and sovereignty issues are involved. For example. However. accepting Taiwan as part of a united China and. much depends on the kind of leverages India can bring to bear in terms of conditions of gains and losses. Tibet as part of China. The process to agree on certain principles is on in India – the sooner it is in place the better it would be. This is something which is being turned over in the minds of the people. both sides should agree in principle . On clearance of this obstacle. largely on populated areas. the issues have remained unresolved.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 203 (c) The idea of dividing zones for controlling piracy is a very recent idea. one. Therefore. However. At some point of time the solution would happen. Under the circumstances the best course would be to prepare for the ‘worst’ but pursue the ‘most favourable outcome’. take the case with India . how is it possible to continue the dialogue to solve mutual problems? Response It is difficult to give a definite answer this question. in between the process. Chinese have not made even a single concession so far. In such a situation. Issues Raised To resolve India-China border dispute. India-China territorial question could be settled very soon and very quickly. China’s claim on Arunachal will have to be given up as part of an overall settlement on the basis of the position India has taken on Tibet. and that would take care of everyone’s interests and needs.despite many meetings. Diplomatic negotiations are difficult processes in which leverages are brought to bear in order to reach agreements. two. On China’s side there is some rethinking.

Chairman’s Concluding Remarks The last response from a distinguished member in the audience on IndiaChina relations was ‘well said’ to wind up the discussions today. If political and military leaders on both sides think and ponder over it and talk more of the commonality. based on this hypothetical proposition would not be correct. Therefore.e. there is also a common faith between India and China. Chief Minister and the Prime Minister visiting that area. Our faith and religion are deep rooted. it would be superfluous to say anything more. then the rest of the world can sleep in peace. Study of philology and anthropology also shows similarities in many other things. I thank all the panellists for their very thoughtful and stimulating presentations. the Eastern sector may continue to be administered by India and the Western sector by China leaving aside sovereignty issues. It is a populated provincial entity with a democratically elected government in full administrative control. The presentations speak for themselves. such an anomalous situation as a starting point for the negotiations would not be acceptable. (b) Prime Minister Nehru made a last desperate attempt to bring peace and goodwill between India and China in 1958.204 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 to maintain status quo i. The problem with that suggestion is that whereas Aksai Chin in the Western sector has no population. They have succeeded in generating many issues . Is it possible to have such arrangements as a basis to start negotiations? Responses (a) Starting negotiations. Even our Vice President Hamid Ansari said recently that there is a lot of commonality of interest. therefore. The administrative situation here is different from Aksai Chin. Arunachal Pradesh is a province of India. The Chinese are objecting unrealistically to the whole democratic process of elected assembly members.

Today. ‘Building Enduring Power Equations in Asia’. I am aware that perhaps some questions were not answered with the kind of depth and detail they deserved – that is inevitable in all such seminars. actually the scope of discussion was enlarged beyond the title. and a lot of time was devoted to bilateral India-China relations.REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF CHINA’S RISE 205 that would require deep reflection by the distinguished audience to find the right answers. That is just as well because this also is part of the larger picture. . I thank you all for your engaged participation and USI for organising this very stimulating and enriching event.

.

That is as it should be. The quality of discussion was really quite remarkable. this is inevitable – that we will end up stressing the challenges as we did. I will not even try to summarise what you have done over the last two days. Even to attempt to do so would be a disservice to the speakers and would be impossible given the range of opinions on China that we now display in India. Thank you for asking me to speak to you and to make some concluding remarks. I think. given the professions of most of us who are here. So. Both of us think that we are ‘strategists’. This is the fourth high level seminar on China that I have been asked to speak to within less than . Ladies and gentlemen. You have also put me in an awkward position. Over the last day and a half day we have heard much more about the challenges than we did about the opportunities a rising China would create. To my mind. and from everything I have heard. it has been a very useful and a very timely exercise because you brought together a range of scholars from around the world of great eminence. it is both. standing between such fine people and their lunch. I know that every diplomat thinks that he is an armchair general. But for me. I don’t think we have answered the question in the title of the seminar. It is both an opportunity and a challenge. IFS General PK Singh. is probably more than we ever had before. We seem to be in a China season in New Delhi.CLOSING REMARKS 207 Closing Remarks Shri Shivshankar Menon. which. I would like to make a few points on what I am taking away from the part of the Seminar that I heard. and every general thinks he knows ‘diplomacy’ better than the diplomats do. which I think has been very useful. at the end of this seminar. whether a rising China is an opportunity or a strategic challenge. namely.

from an Indian point of view. There are also other reasons why I consider it useful. If .208 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 three weeks time. For once. It is useful for Indian scholars to benchmark their work with a comparable society and economy in terms of its size and development imperatives. I think that this interest in China is a useful obsession. I also hope that the international system is better at understanding and dealing with the rise of China then it has been in previous such cases in history. Since parts of our periphery are also China’s periphery. I think that is natural and we might as well accept that rather than getting upset or worried about it. Undoubtedly. and unlike other such phenomena in the past where we have been obsessed with Pakistan. certainly. the rise of China is the most important development in our region and immediate neighbourhood. I sometimes wonder whether any power’s rise in history has been as carefully studied or foretold as China’s. It is useful and necessary. And. We will continue to have a relationship between India and China which includes elements of both competition and cooperation. having tried to study China now for about 40 years. if it helps to improve our understanding of this phenomenon and our ability to deal with it rationally. it is inevitable that we will have issues with each other that we have to work our way through quite apart from the bilateral problems which divide us. It would also be a useful obsession if it brought home to us in India our own unique situation and interests. Sujit Datta of Jamia Milia University was probably the most articulate expression of this. Everybody assumed that we are dealing with a new China. and at certain stages with others. we may be witnessing the emergence of a new national obsession here. but also larger issues. as many of your contributions showed. apart from self interest. as many of the points made here showed. which were mentioned at various stages. India is both uniquely affected and also uniquely placed to benefit from the rise of China. that China’s behavior has changed over time.

CLOSING REMARKS 209 we think back over the last five centuries or so the international system has a terrible record of actually dealing with the rise of new powers — whether it was Britain in the 18th Century. (For instance. Japan. I think the political question must be whether the pattern of China’s development and whether events like global economic crisis have de-linked China sufficiently from the rest of the international system and from the West in particular. regime stability in China itself. seem directly linked through global production chains to the rest of the international system and to other powers. and the rise and fall of the Soviet Union. The reason is simple. the rise of Germany in late 19th or early 20th century. which have never happened such as Japan in the nineties for instance. There have also been rises foretold. She is economically bound to the powers that she may replace. and now we are almost over 50 per cent. The global economic crisis might actually push us over that. India. So. This is still an open question and I think you heard different answers in the course of the last day and a half from different speakers. look at intraAsian trade where quantity seems to have become quality. given the quality of discussion here is that this time the international system may have a better chance of understanding and dealing with this particular rise than it did in the past. the rise of China is occurring when China is intimately linked to the existing power structure. to open new strategic and political options for her? I am not sure.) Secondly. It is because the rise of China is unlike any of the other cases I mentioned from the past. Her prosperity. it seems to me that the rise of China is in a sense masking the simultaneous rise of several other powers – South Korea. Russia regard . the rise of Japan in 1920’s and 30’s. and therefore. where existing powers like the USA. Something like 31 per cent of our trade in Asia was intra Asian in 1990. But my own hope. Unlike each of those cases. China might have developed military capabilities which many of you have to consider professionally through your work. It is occurring in a very crowded strategic environment. Indonesia to name a few.

We are. of which anti-piracy operations off the Horn of Africa is a good example. which we did. it should open up opportunities and options for many more powers in the region as the whole system is opening up. The institutions developed out of what we were doing. the Big Bang approach. the rise of China. theoretically. Prime Minister Rudd gave the clearest expression of that approach by suggesting that we try to set up a pan-Asian institution with a long agenda of all the things we need to do about our cooperative collective security. One is. a clear need for some kind of further discussion on the sort of institution building which can provide assurances to all the powers concerned about an increasingly uncertain future. There are two ways of doing so. of course. There should be more space. There is thus. Start small.210 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 themselves as Asian powers. In effect we use the term. dealing with the rise of Asia but not in the manner in which the West and Europe rose historically. But that is not what came out of our discussion. This is why I say that we should look more closely at not just the challenges and risks. The fact is that the phenomenon is so much more complex that multiple shifts are occurring at the same time. The other way is to begin with practical cooperation. which started practically without any institution in place at all. Shifts in the balance of power are therefore leading to internal balancing responses – to military build-ups to other things rather than to the cooperative and coordinated kind of actions that you might otherwise expect. start with the known. and then build on successful . start with the practical. as short hand for a much more complex phenomenon which still lacks a name. at what actually has opened up and what we could be doing together with other powers including China in this emerging situation? The concentration on challenges rather than opportunities is partly because the rise of China is taking place without any mediatory institutions in place in Asia. Theoretically. Even the external balancing of coalition building that Admiral Kaneda was talking about is not happening. therefore. but also at the opportunities. thus setting up a large regional security architecture.

General PK Singh and all of you in the . it needs to be re-worked periodically. in India. Another is whether China and the other rising Asian powers are willing to and capable of providing public goods in terms of security. For us in India. it has left us with more topics for several more seminars and for all of us to meet again. in the balance around us and in the situation in which we find ourselves. we ourselves have had a bilateral ‘modus vivendi’ in place since 1988. There are many other issues which came up in the course of this discussion. Our own preference has always been for an open security architecture and the sort of multi-polarity that China too advocates in global contexts. The question is really that we have a situation where the Asian balance is opening out and we are trying to find a new equilibrium. I have suggested elsewhere that one area where a beginning could be made is cooperation in maritime security. There are many volunteers for the role of balancer. the larger issue is whether India and China can work together to help to manage the complicated regional security environment in Asia. then like all good seminars.CLOSING REMARKS 211 experience. So. in China. One is whether China can deal with partners as equals or whether her hierarchical strategic culture precludes this. But. India and the region require. There is space for India and China to grow and manage our relationship successfully. let me congratulate you. This includes several aspects. But like all such ‘modus vivendis’. if we both wish it. in the light of changes. China has proved that she can do the economics. but without an answer. Can she also do the politics that come with power? The case in point is whether China can and will help to preserve security in the global commons. Between India and China. Strategic stability was one which we came close to. The US is the first one to put their hand up. but everyone would be happy to be a balancer because everybody else then has to do the hard work. growth and stability that the continued development of China. from Suez through to the western Pacific.

I am sure that the seeds you planted here today will bear fruit in the future. .212 NATIONAL SECURITY SEMINAR 2009 USI. and all the participants who made this a very successful and productive National Security Seminar.

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