The world knows but chooses to ignore that Indian Prime Minister Modi's change of status quo in Ladakh and Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) was an illegal bravado in contempt of international law. Perhaps I am being too kind as the prophets of free economy and dominance may just have prompted him along this brinkmanship.
His motivations to behold such a contemptuous and disruptive policy arose from his own biases and historic predispositions of a mythical Bharat of antiquity and the alignment of containing China and Pakistan in pursuit of a century-old great game. No wonder then that this alignment overnight converted him from an international outcast to a good guy.
First a constitutional amendment and then publishing a new map, slicing off territories in Pakistan and China was bound to create ripples and tremors. China and Pakistan perceived Modi's actions of changing the status quo as creating a 'new abnormal'. According to India's own interpretation, the significance of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and Line of Control (LoC) is diminished. The new maps challenge the sovereignty of China and Pakistan. These also open many new options unthinkable to India's muddled strategic mind. Both China and Pakistan have to legally challenge this new abnormal.
It is impossible that Modi could actually accomplish his imagined boundaries with a two-front confrontation. Yet the underlying message was that 'shining India' was ready to take on China and Pakistan in a military standoff as a counterweight to Chinese economic breakout through Myanmar/Bangladesh and Pakistan. He dreamed of making India a new hegemon and beyond: a super power?
This ill-conceived Indian policy backed by the residue of the Cold War has already backfired.
All along the Sino-Indian border, China occupies all dominating geographical features. From Demchok in Himachal Pradesh to Pangong Fingers to Hot Springs to Galwan and now the Depsang Bottleneck to Daulat Beg Oldi. Indian interior lines all along Western Ladakh are vulnerable. It is a big public relations exercise by the Indian government to substitute facts with fiction and eclipse the horrid humiliation it has endured in Western Ladakh. Therefore a tweet by an Indian mentions Rajnath Singh watching the PLA parade in Moscow, Amit Shah on a horse-trading spree in Manipur and Modi busy promoting tourism in UP.
Many years ago, I theorised that, 'Just like Technology rebalanced the Trinity of Clausewitz, economics powered by...