First China, Now Pakistan: How India Battling on Two Fronts

The Indian military has been talking about a two-front war with neighbors Pakistan and China for decades to keep politicians focused on defense spending. Now that scenario is looking ever more realistic, with conflicts flaring on both its disputed borders.

Talks prior this week between top Chinese and Indian armed force officers in the Ladakh area finished without a significant discovery, the second such endeavor to chill things off since 20 Indian fighters and an obscure number of Chinese soldiers were killed on June 15 in their most noticeably terrible conflict in four decades. Around a similar time, weapons and explosives were recouped and two suspected terrorists were killed following a 15-hour firearm fight approximately 660 kilometers (410 miles) away in south Kashmir, authorities said.

India has fought four wars with China and Pakistan since it gained freedom from British rule in 1947, but it has never had to defend both borders at the same time. Indian military officials are growing concerned that China and Pakistan might gang up on New Delhi at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government is faced with surging coronavirus infections.

“New Delhi is clearly under great pressure, whether from Covid-19, along the Line of Control in Kashmir, or from China,” said Ian Hall, professor of international relations at Griffith University in Queensland, Australia, and author of ‘Modi and the Reinvention of Indian Foreign Policy.’ “We have seen relations with both Islamabad and Beijing worsen over the past few years, and the result is that both have decided to escalate things during the pandemic, when the Modi government is stretched and distracted.”

The Indian military is immense and possibilities are constantly remembered, said a senior security official who wasn’t approved to address the press. In any case, in spite of the arranging, the need to submit assets to two fronts simultaneously would extend the military.

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