NewsCrunch

Best of buzz

How Khrushchev and Mao fought over Indo-China border dispute before the 1962 war

The 1962 war between India and China is largely dismissed internationally as a local border skirmish.   But transcripts during the 1959 summit between China and the Soviet Union points to much intriguing global tensions behind the seemingly inconsequential dispute, reports South China Morning Post.  Before that summit, a number of dramatic incidents had taken place. The Dalai Lama had fled from Tibet and found refuge in India. Chinese soldiers had gunned Indian guards down at the border.

Staff correspondent, NewsCrunch

The 1962 war between India and China is largely dismissed internationally as a local border skirmish. 

But transcripts during the 1959 summit between China and the Soviet Union points to much intriguing global tensions behind the seemingly inconsequential dispute, reports South China Morning Post.

Before that summit, a number of dramatic incidents had taken place. The Dalai Lama had fled from Tibet and found refuge in India. Chinese soldiers had gunned Indian guards down at the border.

When the powerful Soviet Union issued an announcement taking India's side, China felt let down by her Communist sister.

In the transcripts, Soviet president Nikita Khrushchev tells Chinese leader Mao  Zedong that the fault for Dalai Lama escaping and the border skirmish both rests squarely at China's feet.

China hits back, contending that the Indians were the aggressors in the dispute - they had even crossed the McArthur line into China.

They also blamed Indian Prime Minister Nehru for providing refuge to the Dalai Lama and fanning the Tibet fire.

Khrushchev seemed loathe to agree, and he insisted that China should have been more careful in Tibet, and more restrained while dealing with India.

The talks became testy when the Soviet head was outraged that China had accused them of being 'time servers'.

The talks quickly descend into mild intimidation. While Khrushchev hinted at the much superior might of the Soviet Union, China too refused to cower.

The breakdown in the relationship between the Soviet Union and China had begun, and the Indo-China dispute was an indisputable spark to the fire.

Back to Top