Escalating tensions: On U.S. closing Chinese mission (The Hindu)
Mains Paper 2:International relations
Prelims level: China’s consulate
Mains level: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests
- The U.S.’s decision to close China’s consulate in Houston is an unprecedented escalation in the steadily deterioratingties between the world’s two largest economies.
- The Trump administration has accused the consulate and other Chinese diplomatic missions in the country of economic espionage, visa fraud and attempted theft of scientific research.
- All the allegations have been denied by China.
- It has announced visa restrictions on students, imposed sanctions on Chinese officials over a Hong Kong security law and is reportedly considering a sweeping travel ban on the millions of members of China’s ruling Communist Party.
- The consulate decision is by far the most drastic measure.
- This is the first time a Chinese mission is being closed in the U.S. since both countries normalised diplomatic relations in 1979.
- Since the tariff war that President Trump launched in 2018, China has retaliated against every hostile move by the U.S.
- The U.S.-China tensions are no longer about trade and technology.
- What started as a trade war has snowballedinto a larger geopolitical contest between the two superpowers.
- Such contest is something the world hasn’t seen since the hostilecompetition between the U.S. and the Soviet Union during the Cold War.
- President Trump, who is under attack at home for his handling of the novel coronavirus pandemic, may be finding comfort in ramping up tensions with China in an election year.
- But what makes the crisis dangerous in the long term is that there is a growing consensus in Washington that a hostile China, resorting to large-scale espionage, poses a serious threat to the U.S.-dominated international order.
- The Washington establishment, which had fought Trump’s overturestowards Russia and several other policy measures, is in line with the President in his confrontational policy towards China.
- It has already done serious damage to bilateral relations that cannot be reversed easily.
- Incidentally, the U.S.-China crisis is unfolding at a time when Beijing is also acting more assertively in Asia, picking fights with countries in its neighbourhood, from India to Vietnam and Malaysia.
- The message from China is that it is ready for a long game of escalation, as long as the U.S. keeps playing it.
- This is a cyclical trap — measures and countermeasures keep taking ties to new lows with no possibility of an exit.
- If this deterioration is not arrested immediately, the U.S. and China risk a total breakdown in diplomatic relations.
- The downward spiral in U.S.-China ties is bad news for the whole world.
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General Studies Pre. Cum Mains Study Material
Q.1)With reference to the Google for India Digitisation Fund, consider the following statements:
1. Google will invest $10 billion in India over the next five to seven years through a mix of equity investments, partnerships, operations, infrastructure and ecosystem investments.
2. It enables affordable access to the internet and to information for every Indian exclusively in English language.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
Q.1)In the wake of recent escalating tensions between US & China, examine how downward spiral in U.S.-China ties is bad for the whole world?