Fair Dinkum, … an original set of thoughts … with highlighting imposed by The Editor, Thuppahi
It’s good to see Australia providing aid to SL though its peanuts compared to the aid provided by India and China. This article is a good example of an Anglo-Saxon reading of an Asian situation.
Some flawed claims by the Anglo-Saxons at The Age in this article are,
– The claim China was “flexing its muscles” by “insisting on docking a giant scientific research ship despite concerns raised by India”. There is no mention that India had earlier flexed its muscles by insisting Sri Lanka deny entry to the vessel. And no analysis as to whether India had genuine security concerns or were simply politically posturing. There was also no mention of India’s interference into Sri Lanka’s sovereignty.
– Was it a “giant” ship? It’s a big ship but no giant. So, a bias is introduced here to manipulate readers into thinking the vessel has maligned intentions.
– The claim “China’s agreement to restructure infrastructure loans to SL is vital for the country to reach an agreement with the IMF” fails to recognise three important realities:
1) China has indicated a willingness to restructure its loans to SL;
2) The IMF doesn’t seem to be interested in Western lenders in the US and UK restructuring their loans, and the IMF have failed to disclose whether Western lenders are being asked to restructure loans, and as they account for about 47% of the loans to SL, it is reasonable to suppose their willingness to restructure is also vital; and
3) The IMF are not just wanting China to restructure loans, but are demanding full access to all agreements made between Sri Lanka and China, something the IMF, Paris Club, and London Club always refuse to do. This suggests that the IMF intervention in SL is not just economic, but political. The IMF appear to be using the bailout for SL as a mechanism to interfere into Sri Lanka-China relations. The agreements the IMF are now entering into with the Sri Lankan government lack the transparency the IMF demand of China. There is an issue of hidden power interests lurking behind the IMF bailout which may come to bite Sri Lankans.
– A notable omission in the article is that China has provided aid to Sri Lanka. The Anglo-Saxons couldn’t acknowledge China doing anything good, right? To do so would invoke false accusations of being an apologist for the Chinese government.
– No mention is made in the article of the much flaunted “freedom of navigation” which the US and India go on about, which confirms that “freedom of navigation” only applies to the US and Quad, not China.
In other media reports, there are frequent references to Sri Lanka being “in India’s backyard” which has echoes of India using America’s Monroe Doctrine in South Asia to gain hegemony over the region.
In international relations, there are no backyards, no front yards, only independent sovereign states. The Monroe Doctrine has been an evil Doctrine to subjugate the peoples of South America since its inception in 1823. It’s an outmoded obsolete Doctrine that has no place in the 21st century which is why most non-Western countries oppose it. Everybody is tired of it except neocons like Scott Morrison and the Mike Pompeo’s of this world. Morrison has never been a supporter of democracy as he was the man who created a “secret deep state government” inside the Australian government without telling the Australian people.
Australia’s sudden claim in recent years that the Solomon Islands is in “their backyard” is just vile and dirty Neocolonialism.
The only Doctrine that matters today is the UN Charter, not obsolete Monroe Doctrines imposed by the US and India.
On this occasion in Sri Lanka vis a vis the Chinese vessel and Hambantota, India was unable to provide a shred of evidence that the Chinese vessel was undertaking activities inconsistent with its stated purpose. That is because India has no evidence.
Given India had insisted Sri Lanka deny entry to the ship, China had every right to raise an objection and to put its view to the Sri Lankan government and to explain the purpose of the ship. The Sri Lankan government then had the right to make a decision based on the information to hand. For The Age to suggest Sri Lanka was bullied into doing so is obscene and wrong.
Fair Dinkum: “China lands on the moon in HaMBANTOTA,” https://thuppahis.com/2022/08/17/china-lands-on-the-moon-in-hambantota/#more-65008
Darini Rajasingham-Senanayake: “Deep Penetration off Sri Lanka and USA,” https://thuppahis.com/2022/08/16/deep-penetration-and-usa/#more-64968
Zhang Huyi: “Diplomatic Triump for China in Sri Lanka,” 15 August 2022, https://thuppahis.com/2022/08/16/diplomatic-triumph-for-china-in-sri-lanka/#more-64950