Russia’s power will go down while China will become assertive, predicts CDS Gen Chauhan

New Delhi: Russia’s geopolitcal importance will go down in the times to come in spite of being a major nuclear power while the world will witness the rise of an assertive China, India’s Chief of Defence Staff General Anil Chauhan said Saturday.

The world is now transiting between two orders and the current global geo-political environment is in a state of flux, he said in a keynote address at the 14th Chief Marshal L.M. Katre Memorial Lecture organised by the Air Force Association in Bengaluru.

“In spite of Russia being a major nuclear power, the geopolitical importance of Russia will go down in times to come. The Wagner rebellion indicates the internal weakness and is indicative of what may lie in store for the future as far as Russia is concerned,” the CDS was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

“China presently occupies an important place in the geo-economic world order. We will see a more assertive China in the times to come.”‘

Gen. Chauhan added that there will be a convergence of interest between the Russians and the Chinese along with a few other countries. “North Korea and Iran may join the bandwagon,” he predicted.

“Challenges and threats are very easy but opportunities are the real problems because they come up unexpectedly. That’s the major challenge we are facing to predict what opportunities will come forward. I believe opportunities come up at times when things are not normal. India will emerge as the global leader of the south and the successful conduct of G20 is an indication in that direction,” he said.

In India’s context, the CDS added that the steps it takes today would define the country’s status in the next 25 years.

“The characteristics of warfare are changing because of the introduction of new technologies. It’s mostly technological-driven issues. We are fighting new domains like  space, cyber, cognitive and electromagnetic,” he said, adding that traditional methods of fighting are in air, on land and at sea.

“Change and adaptation are crucial for survival. For the armed forces as well, change and evolution are as important as for any species because change is occurring around us,” the CDS said.

“What the three service chiefs and I are trying to do is to give these reforms a certain speed in a particular direction. We are entering an age that is uncertain, this will require some kind of a transformative change,” Gen. Chauhan said, about the reforms that are underway among the armed forces.

“Armed forces are also cognisant of the changes that are taking place around them and they also adapt and change. As far as the Air Force is concerned, they have graduated into network-centric warfare. As far as the Navy is concerned, we have seen this mission-based deployment,” he added.

(Edited by Tony Rai)

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