As tensions continue to flare up between China and India in the Himalayan border region of Doklam, the state-run Xinhua news agency has produced a video attempting to explain China’s side of the dispute with the help of a racist Indian caricature.
In the English-language video, which apparently is targeted at winning over the minds of foreigners, a Xinhua host gives an obnoxiously one-sided portrayal of the conflict by listing India’s “7 sins” and is occasionally aided by an offensive stereotype wearing a fake beard and turban.
“Nobody is blaming me because I am asleep,” the bumbling “Indian” says in a startlingly cringeworthy accent to canned laughter at the beginning of the clip. Later, he goes on to worry, “He’s building a path in his garden. I’m in danger!” after the host accuses India of effectively “driving bulldozers into its neighbor’s house without knocking” on false pretenses.
Finally, the “Indian” is seen brandishing a pair of scissors, menacing “Bhutan” as it is asked the questions, “Is this your home here?” and “Are you seeking India’s protection?”
In case you weren’t keeping track, India’s “seven sins” are: trespassing, violating a bilateral convention, trampling international law, confusing right and wrong, putting the blame on the victim, hijacking a small neighbor and sticking to a mistake knowingly.
This bizarre video follows a heated exchange on a Chinese TV news show earlier this month when a retired Indian general accused Chinese media of aggressive and belligerent rhetoric, only to be interrupted by a Chinese colonel who sternly shot back: “Let me just use a few seconds to say, you are in Chinese territory, so if you do not want a war, that is fine, so you’ve got to go away from Chinese territory.”
The conflict at the border is now more than two months old. While there were hopes that tensions may soon deescalate, an Indian official said earlier this week that Chinese troops had pelted Indian soldiers with stones while attempting to push across the border. The whole thing began in June when Chinese construction brigades arrived on the narrow plateau of Doklam intent on building a road through the region which both China and Bhutan claim ownership over. India sent to troops to block the work, claiming that it was acting on Bhutan’s behalf.
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