'Shameless' India needs 'bitter lesson', says Chinese media

05 July 2017

As the China-India border standoff enters the 20th day, an increasingly strident Chinese media said "shameless" India must be taught "a bitter lesson" and added that India "will suffer greater losses than in 1962" if war were to break out today.

An editorial on Wednesday in the hardline state-run Global Times also said the Chinese public is "infuriated by India's provocation" and "look(s) down" on India's military might.

Further, it accused India of "acting shamelessly before the international community" and of "coercing" Bhutan to get involved in this latest India-China border standoff.

 China last week made oblique reference to the 1962 war between the two countries, after which defence minister Arun Jaitley retorted making clear that the India of 2017 is vastly more powerful militarily now than it was in 1962  (See: China ups war of words with India over Dong La, talks of 'betrayal').

"Jaitley is right that the India of 2017 is different from that of 1962 - India will suffer greater losses than in 1962 if it incites military conflicts," said the editorial in Global Times, which is run by the Chinese Communist Party's official newspaper People's Daily.

Beijing-run media appears to be irked not just by Jaitley but also with Indian Army chief Bipin Rawat, who recently said India "is ready for a two-and-a-half front war". He was referring to China, Pakistan and internal conflicts.

"If New Delhi believes that its military might can be used as leverage in the Donglang area, and it's ready for a two-and-a-half front war, we have to tell India that the Chinese look down on their military power," the editorial said.

The almost three-week-long stand-off between India and China was sparked by Beijing starting to build a road in the Doka La area of the Sikkim sector, which it calls 'Donglang', apparently in violation of a 2012 agreement with India.

"We firmly believe that the face-off in the Donglang area will end up with the Indian troops in retreat. The Indian military can choose to return to its territory with dignity, or be kicked out of the area by Chinese soldiers," the editorial said.

"This time, we must teach New Delhi a bitter lesson," it added.

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