Noting that the Chinese military’s infrastructure build-up under its Western Theatre Command — that looks after India — was “eye-opening and alarming”, a top visiting US Army officer Wednesday said the Indian and American Army will train together this year at 9,000-10,000 feet to increase interoperability for high-altitude warfare.
Pitching for a strong operational bond between the two armies in the Indo-Pacific region instead of only focusing on the naval interoperability, US Army Pacific Commanding General Charles Flynn termed China’s build-up near Ladakh and strengthening of its military infrastructure as part of Beijing’s “corrosive and destabilising behaviour”.
Pointing out that he has been part of the Pacific Command since 2014 under various ranks, Gen Flynn said, “When I sort of look back on what the CPC (Communist Party of China) and the PRC (People’s Republic of China) were doing, compared to what they are doing today, they have taken an incremental and insidious path and destabilizing and corrosive behaviours that they project into the region are simply not helpful”.
Interacting with a select group of journalists, the senior US Army officer who will be visiting the crucial Eastern Command tomorrow also spoke on the Ladakh situation.
When asked about the Chinese buildup along the Line of Control (LAC) and construction of villages in Bhutan, the officer said he believed “that activity level is eye-opening”.
“Some of the infrastructures that is being created in Western Theatre Command (WTC) is alarming. And so much like across all of their military arsenal, one has to ask the question why. I don’t have a crystal ball to say how it is going to end or where it will be but I will say, it is worthy of asking that question and trying to get a response as to what their intentions are,” he said.
Talking about the ongoing military and diplomatic talks between India and China to resolve the Ladakh crisis that has entered its third year, he said it is helpful but Chinese actions and words don’t match.
“I think the talks that are going on are helpful but behaviour matters here as well. I think my understanding is that what they are saying is one thing but the way they are acting and behaving in a way of build-up is concerning and it is concerning to everyone. Obviously, there has been tension and we have to pay attention to that,” he said.