View from the LEFThttps://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/view-from-the-left-17/

View from the LEFT

CPM mouthpiece People’s Democracy splashed out on the Chinese revolution’s 60th anniversary. What stands out,however...

Neighbourly amity

CPM mouthpiece People’s Democracy splashed out on the Chinese revolution’s 60th anniversary. What stands out,however,is CPM General Secretary Prakash Karat’s article accusing the “lobbies” within India seeking a strategic alliance with the US of working against India-China friendship. He rejects reports of Chinese hostility as “either baseless or highly exaggerated.”

“The rising economic power of the two Asian giants — China and India — is presented as a source of conflict between the two. In strategic terms,China is sought to be pitted against India. Those dominating the world economic order would like nothing better than a relationship of rivalry and conflict between China and India,” he says. He says there is “active lobbying” to buy arms from the US and quotes a Washington Post report which claimed that retired admirals and generals from the US armed forces who now work for defence firms are lobbying to secure defence deals. “The recent efforts to create complications in India-China relations must be seen in this context,” he said.

Can’t beat China

Another article says India should follow the Chinese model of development. “If India and China join hands,they may well dominate the world economy for decades. But India is missing the chance. What do we gain by China-bashing now?” it says. “Today,the Chinese economy,and particularly its manufacturing sector,has grown to such a level that is beyond our comprehension. Most the Indians are unaware of the size of China’s production capacity; and the grumbling that China “is becoming” too strong signifies a delayed understanding. China has already become too strong to be compared with India,” it claims.

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Curiously,it compares the production of steel,cement,coal,cars,power and foodgrains by the two countries to argue that China was way ahead of India. “There is still time to emulate the Chinese model of development; after all,the old dictum says: “Either lead or follow.” There is no the point in grumbling,” it adds.

G20 gloom and doom

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh may be upbeat about the G8 decision to surrender economic dominance and push the G20,including India and China and other emerging nations,into the centrestage,but the CPM says there is nothing to cheer in the development.

The lead editorial says “the transition from G8 to G20 as the manager of global capitalism has not signified any basic shift in the global order. Neither does the G20 represent,contrary to the claims being made,the interests of the developing countries across the world.” Further,“the absence of major economies like Iran,Venezuela and countries from the African continent (only South Africa is included) robs the new grouping of a truly representative character,” it says.

“The global imbalance characterised by the US running huge trade deficits by borrowing large sums of money from the rest of the world,remains unaddressed,” it adds.

“The G20 summit represents more continuity with the economic order underlying globalisation than any substantive change. In fact the way US President Obama used the occasion to step up rhetoric against Iran’s civilian nuclear programme,along with the heads of state of Britain and France,shows how little things have changed,” it says.