Communists in India Oppose Malabar Naval Exercises

Protests in India

Protests in India

The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) [Communist Party of India (Marxist)] has expressed its strong opposition to the Malabar joint naval exercises going to be conducted from October 14 to 21.

Begun in 1992 as joint naval exercises between the Indian and US navies and institutionalized with the Indo-US defence framework agreement signed in 2005, the exercises are notable this year, for the participation of the Japanese navy.

This, according to CPI(M), reflects the strengthening of the trilateral security ties established between India, USA, and Japan.

In fact, CPI(M) says, the United States has been pressing for including Japan and Australia. This is part of the US “pivot” to the Asia-Pacific region, the aim of which is to contain China.

Joint military exercises amongst two or more countries are normally conducted when these countries perceive a common enemy.

In this instance, who is the common enemy of India, USA and Japan? In the absence of such a common enemy, it is clear that this BJP government, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is signaling that the Malabar exercises symbolize India’s complete integration with the US military strategy in Asia.

Japan has made it clear that it considers China’s moves in the South China sea and the region its prime concern for strengthening security ties with India.

Such a strategic military tie up with the United States and Japan is harmful for India’s strategic independence and autonomy. India should not become a subservient ally of US military strategy in Asia, CPI(M) suggests.

The Polit Bureau issued a statement calling upon all patriotic and anti-imperialist forces to oppose these exercises.

Photo courtesy: CPI(M)

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