Monday, September 3, 2007

‘An Asian arc of freedom’

Naval and air forces from the US, Japan, India and Australia are carrying out joint exercises in the Bay of Bengal this week, under the auspices of the recently formed ‘Quadrilateral Initiative’. The BBC reports:

Many analysts see the manoeuvres as efforts by a democratic coalition to ‘contain’ rising Chinese power. Although the participants deny this, Beijing seems to be increasingly worried.

Good. Until China gives its own people freedom, withdraws from Tibet, stops threatening Taiwan, stops stealing technological secrets from around the world and ends its support for regimes like Sudan’s, it should be worried.

The story also demonstrates what an important ally India is becoming. With a billion people it’s the world’s largest democracy, and it’s an important counterweight to China, Iran and Pakistan should that country tip the wrong way.

They also happen to be responsible for some of the best food in the world (although by some strange geo-political quirk Indian food doesn’t seem to be big in the US, at least not the parts I’ve visited; come to England guys, you don’t know what you’re missing).

We should be, and hopefully are, pouring money and assistance into the country like there’s no tomorrow.

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