Opinion: Will 2021 be China’s annus horribilis?
Covid-19 virus has made the world acutely aware of the dark side of China; the image of the totalitarian party won’t improve in 2021
Writing in Deccan Chronicle, Arpi notes that a World Health Organisation (WHO) team will soon travel to Wuhan to investigate the origins of Covid-19. However, he says that it will be difficult to find out the traces of the virus produced in a Wuhan lab keeping in mind the past experiences.
“The fact remains that many whistleblowers have now disappeared, and it will be difficult to prove anything as the lab has been cleaned of all traces of mishaps,” he says.
Even the conservative National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) of France admitted that “the origin of SARS-CoV-2 is being seriously questioned,” he adds.
Arpi says that it was in these circumstances that China decided to “teach” India a lesson.
From all available information today, General Zhao Zongqi, the commander of the Western Theatre Command (WTC) facing India, managed to convince Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is also chairman of the Central Military Commission, that China could advance in a few areas in Ladakh at little cost for Beijing.
In May, the PLA began to move in Ladakh, but it soon turned into a “misadventure” for Beijing; the Chinese generals had not planned for New Delhi’s strong reaction.
The author notes that the Covid-19 virus has made the world acutely aware of the dark sides of China; the image of the totalitarian party won’t improve in 2021.
Today President Xi finds himself in a lose-lose situation, as he realizes he can’t bully India in Ladakh as the Indian side is well-prepared for uncertain situations.
The author adds that Beijing has failed in intimidating India with its brazen warfare. Instead, it showed the PLA’s limitations facing a determined adversary. Economically too, Beijing lost a lot, especially with India and several other countries banning a number of Chinese apps and the decision to not award big contracts to China, he adds.
Concluding the article, he says that one could add many issues to the list. All this makes me think 2021 will be an “annus horribilis” for China and its new Great Helmsman. It would only be justice.