Justice Markandey Katju-
In his recent visit to Ladakh Prime Minister Modi, in an obvious reference to China, ( though without naming it ) said: “The age of expansionism is over. In the centuries gone by it was expansionism which hurt humanity the most, and sought to destroy it. Those who are driven by expansionism have always proved a danger to the world. History bears testimony to the fact that expansionist forces have either been destroyed or forced to turn back. It is due to this experience that the world is coming together against expansionist forces.”
Soon after this speech the spokesman of the Chinese Embassy in India, Ji Rong, denied that China is expansionist, and said that the claim was ‘exaggerated and fabricated’.
But is the Prime Minister’s statement untrue?
In my article ‘The Chinese are today’s Nazis ‘ published in theweek.in I have given details of Chinese expansionism. Ji Rong and the Chinese Foreign Ministry should reply to these details, instead of giving a generalized response that the Prime Minister’s statement is ‘exaggerated and fabricated.’
As pointed out in my article, today China has penetrated deeply into the economies of Asia, Africa, Latin America, as well as of the developed countries. China is today undoubtedly an imperialist expansionist force like Nazi Germany, and like the Nazis in the 1930s and early 1940s is the greatest danger to world peace. Its Belt and Road Initiative is really for seeking expansion.
Like imperialists, the Chinese are hungrily seeking to capture the markets and raw materials of all countries. Mountaneous areas like Tibet and Ladakh, may appear barren, like Siberia, but like Siberia, they are full of valuable minerals and other natural wealth. That is the real reason why Chinese troops intruded into Galwan Valley, Pangong Tso, Hot Springs, Demchok, Five Fingers etc and will undoubtedly seek to penetrate further into Ladakh, unless stopped.
For instance, China has penetrated deeply into the Pakistan economy and is using the China Pakistan Economic Corridor ( CPEC ) for this purpose. Balochistan’s huge natural resources of gas, gold, coal, copper, sulphur etc have been handed over to the Chinese by the Pakistan authorities, causing deep resentment among the Balochis, who are kept poor and marginalized. The Pakistani markets are flooded with Chinese goods.
A Pakistan journalist told me recently that the Pakistani media has been told by the Pakistan authorities not to publish or say on TV anything against China. This shows the grip the Chinese have taken over the Pakistani government.
Prime Minister Modi’s speech condemning Chinese expansionism should open the eyes of the whole world, which should unite against Chinese imperialist expansionism. Though one may disapprove of many other things Modi said or did, on this issue, all must unite. By speaking against Chinese expansionism, Modi has spoken like Churchill against Nazi expansionism.
[Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India, and former Chairman, Press Council of India. The views expressed are his own].