India and Japan Should Sign a Defensive Pact
A "defensive pact" will be defined as guaranteed military support in the event of either country being attacked.
1. No forfeits
2. No new arguments in the final round
3. First round is acceptance only
4. No trolling
5. No kritiks
6. Violation of rules results in automatic loss.
I accept, burden of proof is firmly on PRO
As noted by Con, burden of proof rests on me. That means, I have to prove that India and Japan should sign a defensive pact with each other. Therefore, if I can prove that, on balance, it would be advantageous for both countries to sign a defensive pact with each other, I win the debate.
C1-Helps Prevents a Chinese Regional Hegemony
The main reason it would be in both countries’ interests to sign a defensive pact with each other is because they both should want to prevent a Chinese hegemony.
In order to justify this point, I’ll have to prove that:
P1-China has the desire to form a regional hegemony
P2-India and Japan should be against a Chinese regional hegemony
P3-A defensive pact will help lower the chances of China creating a regional hegemony
Before I do this however, I should explain what a regional hegemony is. A regional hegemony is when a country has heavy influence throughout a region and its military is the dominant power in the region and it has indirect control over all events that occur in the region. That’s a loose definition, however, assuming Con ignores semantics, it will be sufficient for my points.
First, I have to prove that China wishes to form a regional hegemony. I will do this by giving recent examples that suggest this.
First, we can look at China’s military budget. In 2015, it was the second largest in the world (behind only the US) at $145,000,000,000. This budget is so large that it is almost the equivalent of Japan, India, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Indonesia, and Thailand’s military budget combined. (1) A country that spends this much on its military clearly is interested in asserting itself beyond its own borders.
Plus, China has already many and plans to have 18 naval bases adjacent to the Indian Ocean. (2) In fact, recently, China has projected its power in the Indian Ocean many times, such as when its submarines were spotted in the Indian Ocean. (3) It has even called out India, stating that “the Indian Ocean can’t be India’s backyard.” (4) This shows China wishing to have a regional hegemony as its naval power spreads beyond its own seas and well into international waters (much like the US Navy) and in other countries.
Chinese activity has been even heavier in the South China Sea lately. The area features many island disputes which China has with other Asian nations. For one, China has been increasing its naval prowess in the region and has also began building artificial islands in the area. Plus, there is some evidence that airstrips are being built in the region. (5) On top of this, near the Senkaku Islands (Japanese territory, claimed by the Chinese), the Chinese recently sent an armed ship into the area, entering Japanese waters. (6) China has also shown interest in the Japanese island of Okinawa (which has a heavy American presence). (7) Once again, this suggests China’s desire for a regional hegemony which will require it to have full control of the South China Sea and have possession of islands it claims to be its own.
Another area China is increasing its assertiveness is in the Sea of Japan where it has recently conducted naval exercises with the Russians. (8) On land, China is also increasing its assertiveness as it went as far as warning the Indian prime minister from visiting Arunachal Pradesh, which has long been in dispute between India and China. (9)
Through these actions, it is clear that China wishes to form a regional hegemony where its dominance and power are felt throughout Asia.
Now, I must prove that it is against both India and Japan’s interests for China to have a regional hegemony. I will mostly relate back the points established in P1.
To start off, both countries are democratic nations and share those values. However, China is a dictatorship with many human rights violations, so it would go against both Indian and Japanese values to have strong Chinese influence. Also, both India and Japan have strong cultures, with many customs that go back centuries and therefore would be against a heavy Chinese influence in their countries. In fact, the positive view rates among Indian and Japanese citizens of China is at 31% and 7% respectively. Likewise, China’s favourability rate of India is at 30% and of Japan is at 8%. (10) On top of that, 85% of Japanese and 72% of Indians fear that they military conflict will occur with China over territorial disputes. (11)
Both countries obviously wish to protect their possessions and have as much liberty in their own waterways as possible. So I can simply relate back to my P1 arguments. If Chinese power and influence expands so heavily in Asia, then the areas mentioned in P1 are at risk of falling or being ceded to the Chinese. Plus, it may lead to a heavy Chinese presence in the Sea of Japan (Japan’s main waterway) and the Indian Ocean (which includes India’s main waterway). Simply put, the less projection of Chinese power the better.
Another key problem for both India and Japan is that if the water from the Indian Ocean to the South China Sea and the Sea of Japan is controlled primarily by China they can cut off foreign trades routes to both countries potentially. This threat could also be used as a way to force both countries to give disputed territory to China, as they would suffer greatly without foreign trade. China has already began trying to cut off other countries from its trade network, during its expansions in the South China Sea. (12)
In fact, China’s actions in the Indian Ocean relates to the idea called the “String of Pearls.” This involves the China having direct sea trade routes through the Indian Ocean and South China Sea with many African and Middle Eastern nations. (13) Among these countries is Pakistan, India’s biggest enemy. On that note, both China and Pakistan consider each other strategic allies, which could potentially be dangerous for India, especially considering India’s border disputes with China. (14)
Therefore, for the interest of India and Japan’s cultural, territorial, and economic interests it would be in both countries best interest to prevent a Chinese hegemony.
Now I must address how the signing of a defensive pact between India and Japan would help counter a Chinese hegemony.
First of all, China’s military outmatches India and Japan’s. (15) However, if India and Japan’s are put together it is a much more even match. So, theoretically if China was to take a more aggressive pursuit against either country in settling its territory disputes, India and Japan would both have stronger defense. For example, say China attacks India, the Japanese could help pressure China in the East, forcing it to split its army and navy on two fronts, one against India and one against Japan. This would make war for China a lot harder. Therefore, by knowing India and Japan have each other’s back both countries could be more assertive with the Chinese, especially when it comes to protecting their territory. This would increase the chances of China avoiding conflict all together as a balance of power would be more likely be created.
As proof of the following, defensive pacts have been shown to be an effective deterrent in recent times. For example, recently as many know Turkey shot down a Russian jet. (16) However, seeing as Turkey is a member of NATO, Russian declaration of war would result in Russia having to go to war with all NATO countries including the US. Normally, one would assume Russia would respond (given their outrage at the event and under Putin the country has shown aggression before), but the threat of a war they couldn’t win deterred them from doing so. An Indian-Japanese alliance would have (or at least greatly increase the chance) of China having the same problem and not wishing to go to war with either country.
Therefore, if China is at risk of facing both India and Japan in the event of war, it is less likely to continue to try and expand its territory. Thus, a defensive pact would help lower the chances of China establishing a hegemony.
C2-Less American Reliance
If both countries signed a defensive pact this would decrease their reliance or potential reliance on the United States in dealing with Asian affairs. This is preferable as it allows India and especially Japan more military sovereignty and freedom and the fact the US’s prowess in the region could decrease in the future.
Now both countries rely on the US right now in foreign affairs (Japan mainly). India has sought American support in due to the perceived Pakistani threat in the past and currently purchases many arms from them. (17) As for Japan, they currently have a defensive pact together and host many US army bases and since the end of World War II has heavily relied on the US for military support. (18)
Obviously though, it would be in both countries interests to not need to rely as much on the US for support militarily. Plus, the US also has strong relations with Pakistan and South Korea who the India and Japan respectively have relatively strained relations with (especially India and Pakistan). (19, 20, 21)
Also, with the US declining as a global power and increased focus in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, the US may be less able to support India or Japan if needed. (22) This means there needs to be an alternative path for each country to deal with potential threats if needed, in this case each other.
TinyBudha forfeited this round.
I win, violation of rule 1.
TinyBudha forfeited this round.
TinyBudha forfeited this round.