The Indian military is studying potential responses in case near-peer adversary China launches a full-scale invasion of Taiwan.
The move comes as the US presses the South Asian nation regarding the steps it would take in the event of a war between its neighboring countries.
According to two senior Indian officials, the study will examine the broader impact of the potential war, which would involve the US and its allies.
It will also assess various war scenarios to help provide New Delhi with appropriate “options” if a conflict arises.
If the war is short, some Indian military commanders said strong statements of condemnation and support may be enough of a response.
However, they believe that issuing statements will not suffice if the conflict lasts longer than expected, much like Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
A Logistics Hub
The study, which has been ongoing for more than six weeks, has provided at least one concrete response to an armed conflict in Asia.
It stated that India could serve as a logistics hub to provide repair and maintenance services to allied warships and aircraft.
The Indian government could also help provide food, fuel, and medical equipment to foreign units resisting Beijing.
Other options will be presented to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other political leaders “as soon as possible” to prepare the army should the need arise.
Apart from exploring potential responses, the study is also examining a more extreme scenario for India, which is to be directly involved in a war.
New Delhi has strained relations with Beijing, highlighted by deadly clashes along their border in 2021.
For Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning, Washington’s pressure on India about its response to a potential China-Taiwan war only creates more tensions and provokes confrontation.
“By hyping up the Taiwan question … the US attempts to turn the Taiwan question into an international issue,” she claimed. “This is highly dangerous.”
Former US National Security Council official Lisa Curtis said India should stand back and not get involved militarily.