For China, the Quad Is a Diplomatic and Military Double Whammy

For China, the Quad Is a Diplomatic and Military Double Whammy. By Austin Bay. The Quad is the US, Japan, India, and Australia.

This week’s Quadrilateral Security Dialogue foreign ministers meeting in Tokyo signals that the so-called Quad has arrived as a global diplomatic combination. The Quad is already an Indo-Pacific military power.

For Beijing, the Quad’s formation and solidification is a nightmare — and China’s communist government has only itself to blame.

In 2007, the Quad, at the behest of Japan, held its first informal meeting. At that meeting, Japan said all four nations regarded China as a disruptive actor in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. This common concern should spur close cooperation to confront it. …

In 2007, India carefully avoided the appearance of actively countering China. Economic cooperation with Beijing had potential benefits. Plus, New Delhi and Beijing were trying to peacefully resolve their border disputes in the Himalayas. …

In 2020, after eight years of rising Chinese aggression under Xi, the Quad is increasingly important:

What a difference 13 years make, especially a baker’s dozen scarred by Chinese imperialist territorial expansion, intellectual theft, military buildup and lawless behavior. China’s fake South China Sea islands bristle with weapons and violate the Philippines’ and Vietnam’s maritime zones. Beijing recently announced its new hypersonic missiles can smash Guam, a sovereign American territory. Human rights organizations accuse Beijing of genocide against Turkic Uighurs and ethnic Tibetans.

That border settlement in the Himalayas? Today, Indian and Chinese military forces clash in the mountains as China builds a transportation network capable of supporting a sustained ground offensive driving south into the subcontinent.

In the last 13 years, it looks as if India’s leaders have learned that China’s dictators interpret avoiding the appearance of opposing them as recognition of their power and a form of appeasement.

But the U.S. had a learning curve. American optimism regarding China’s future has turned to pushback pessimism. The militarization of the South China Sea and the demonization of the U.S. by Chinese military leaders soured the U.S.-China relationship.

The last straw: Beijing’s deceit allowed COVID-19/the Wuhan virus to become a global pandemic. …

Today, Indian military forces routinely participate in Quad military exercises in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. Indian naval forces enter in the South China Sea. Indian ships have exercised with Japanese air and naval forces in the East China Sea between Japan’s home islands and Okinawa. Much to the chagrin of Chinese admirals, Indian, U.S., Japanese and Australian forces conduct coalition exercises in the Indian Ocean.

Traditional power politics to keep the peace.