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Scrutiny
  
Dragon... and a little fire
There is an uncanny similarity between the events in Tibet and what was written in the book Dragon Fire
15/05/2008

‘Pakistan neutralized,’ read the encrypted message. Air Marshal Commodore Ravi Thapar received it in the code which still had not been deciphered by the United States and European experts. It was a simple message leading to a battle plan he had already drawn up. The Chinese forces which had been pushed into Arunachal Pradesh would now be cut off from behind and then destroyed. Part of it was revenge for the dreadful defeat by China on India in 1962. Part of it was sensible military strategy... These were the lines from the famous thriller Dragon Fire written by renowned BBC journalist Humphrey Hawksley in the year 2000.

This futuristic fiction which was sequenced in the time zone of 2007 is having its ramification felt right in 2008. Incidentally Dragon Fire is set against the backdrop of a Tibetan uprising propelled by a renegade group of soldiers belonging to India’s elite Special Frontier Force (SFF) most of whose recruits are incidentally Tibetan Buddhists. It was Major Gendun Choedrak and his men from the SFF whose mission was to rescue a Buddhist religious leader Lhundrub Togden from the Drapchi Prison in Lhasa, Tibet.

Their endeavour eventually gave shape to a mass uprising against the Chinese atrocities and the shrewd game plan of the Chinese to bring about a demographic transition in Tibet. China in retaliation blew off the Tibetan Parliament in exile in Dharamsala through a sleeper agent albeit with help from a Pakistan based terrorist group. What followed after that in the form of the assassination of the Indian Home Minister eventually sucked India into a war on both sides with Pakistan and China. While India decimated Pakistan through the use of tactical nuclear weapons, China almost did the same on India while it too got hit. All these might be a little far fetched but no one can deny two things.
One, that there is an uncanny similarity between the sudden and massive uprising that happened in Tibet and what was written the Dragon Fire novel. And though there is no reason to believe that India is behind it as it takes some nerve to do something of that sort and the present dispensation doesn’t even have an iota of it, still there’s no doubt that it wasn’t exactly indigenous without any external aid. Who instigated and with what motive is a debatable issue with innumerable possibilities. The second thing is that the possibility of India fighting two wars at a time, as narrated in the thriller is also not an impossible proposition. China has deliberately armed India’s immediate neighbours and for obvious reasons.

With the negative PR having done much of harm and with India eventually becoming more acceptable to the rest of the world because of it’s more accommodating nature, and since India unlike China never tried to bring about forced demographic transition in its own areas of trouble, China would start looking at India as more of a adversary than it probably is. What Humphrey Hawksley wrote in his first novel Dragon Strike regarding the Chinese eying oil rich Spratly Islands is already shaping up with Japan and Taiwan getting more wary of China. If both the Dragon Fire and the Dragon Strike come true eventually, then the days of the Third World War are not far away. Incidentally, that is his next book.

By:- Pathikrit Payne
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