‘Breaking the Chinese Myth’: Uncovering Chinese Myth and Exposing PLA’s Invincibility

Book Review

BREAKING THE CHINESE MYTH
Author: Maj Gen Dr Rajan Kochhar (VSM)
Publisher : BRIKA BOOKS
Language : English
ISBN-10 : 8194870348
ISBN-13 : 978-8194870340

Breaking the Chinese Myth’ is a book of an in-depth analysis of the Chinese psyche and India’s counter to the same. Written by Major General Dr Rajan Kochhar, Indian Army, who is known to be an astute professional and thinker, “Breaking the Chinese Myth” is an extra ordinary compilation on current geo-political issues with reference to belligerent neighbour China and the need for modernisation of Indian armed forces.

The book is a first-hand account of a soldier who has watched the developments in our neighbourhood in the recent past, and is extremely relevant to the present times. It makes a fascinating reading and will add to the learning curve to those who love their country.

Although a much has been written about the ongoing Indo-Chinese conflict but this book is in a different genre as it uncovers the Chinese Myth and exposes the invincibility of the PLA.

“Breaking the Chinese Myth” begins interestingly with the management of our borders and a hostile neighbourhood. The author brings out in a lucid manner how difficult task it is for the security forces to manage a diverse border, which is manifested with different kinds of terrains and extreme variation in climatic conditions. He brings out the need for getting all the security agencies under a single umbrella namely “National Border Management Authority”, to ensure amore coordinated effort and better command and control of all resources to counter border infiltration and smuggling.

The book gives an interesting account of China’s emergence as a global power and its transformation as an economic power of reckoning. The grandiose design of its “One Belt One Road” initiative taking 65 countries along smacks off its expansionist designs. ‘The Chinese Three World’s Theory’ beautifully explains how China has endeavoured to unite with other third world countries to counter the influence of United States and its allies as well as Russia. The key elements of Chinese foreign policy have been well enunciated and its linkages with the Chinese self=perception brought out. The book lends a great insight on how China’s foreign policy has emerged under Xi Jinping with an attempt to remodel the world’s global order.

The book includes another interesting chapter that deals with a comparative assessment of Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) with the Indian Army. The chapter becomes quite useful as is very informative and makes us aware about the latest military acquisitions by the IndianArmy as well as the need to embrace disruptive technologies especially the likes of artificial intelligence, quantum information, big data analytics and cloud computing.

The modernisation of PLA has been explained in detail and the lessons which the Indian Army can derive to enhance its own effectiveness.

The present Indo-China Conflict has been well covered with all factual details and strategic assessments. The author brings out the requirement to enhance the strike capability of the Mountain Strike Corps to make the Indian Army a potent force to guard the Ladakh sector. A need for re-orientation of our defensive posture and the requirement for a multi layered ISR system to cover the operational and strategic depth areas have been analysed in detail. Our future relationship with China has been discussed and the book brings out the all-pervasive need to arrive at an early solution to the LAC claim lines.

An essential chapter deals with the requirement of a comprehensive defence strategy is yet another attraction of the book and the author has outlined a concept for its formulation. The threat perceptions as well as military preparedness of our adversaries have been well outlined and explained in sufficient detail. The reality of a two front threat has been correctly analysed and the need to bolster capability building has been voiced.

In the last chapter, which perhaps should be most relevant to citizens of the country, is the development of the Indian defence industry and Make in India initiatives of the Government. The author analyses the efficacy of the various defence reforms announced by the Government and the need for the resuscitation of the Indian Defence Industry. Some very cogent recommendations which are workable and necessary have been given. The Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020 (DAP-2020) has been analysed in detail and areas for more emphasis brought out. The book makes very interesting recommendations to further the Make in India programme towards an Atmanirbhar Bharat.

It is interesting to note that in the entire saga of the present Sino-Indian conflict Indian soldiers emerge to be superior. The grit, determination and strength of the Indian soldier have stood out. The Chinese have not been able to cope up with the harsh realities of the mountainous terrain. The senior leadership of the PLA has been found lacking at times showing their relative inexperience in strategy formulation and tactical execution. Sun Tzu teaching couldn’t have been more apt to sum things up, ““If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” The goal of any conflict is to control your opponent and overcome them.

The book has been forthright to highlight all the above issues which would merit the attention of the appropriate forums of policy making in our Government. It infuses a sense of secure future for our nation. Counting on the strengths and weaknesses, the author weaves a strategy that visualises India at 100years of Independence, a country commanding international respect and dignity and also equipped with strong deterrent capability to any misadventure by its neighbours. Coming from a celebrated soldier it is both credible and reassuring. A must read for all, who care for India.

The book is available on the following link to buy on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.in/dp/8194870348/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=breaking+the+chinese+myth&qid=1615455573&sr=8-1.

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