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Decoding India's Myanmar Border Fencing Strategy



  Jan 29, 2024

Analyzing India’s Border Fencing Strategy: The Myanmar Border Case



Context:

Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s announcement of fencing India’s border with Myanmar signals a strategic shift in India’s border management. This decision reflects broader socio-political dynamics within the region, particularly in Manipur.

Key Aspects:

1. Manipur’s Administrative Collapse:

The idea of fencing the Myanmar border emerges against the backdrop of Manipur’s administrative challenges and internal socio-political conflicts. 2. Socio-Political Divide:

The internal divide in Manipur has led to extreme positions, framing the ‘outsider’ as a primary cause of unrest, which simplifies the complex social fabric of India’s eastern states.

3. Historical and Familial Ties:

States like Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, and Mizoram share historical and familial connections with Myanmar. Fencing could disrupt these longstanding cross-border relations.

4. Topographical Challenges:

The dense forests along the Myanmar border pose significant challenges to completely sealing the border, suggesting that kinship ties and movement may continue despite the fencing.

5. Kinship Bonds Amidst Myanmar’s Turmoil:

The ongoing conflict in Myanmar underscores the importance of cross-border kinship, especially for communities in Mizoram, which have shown solidarity with those affected by the conflict.

6. Comparisons with Western Borders:

The fencing of India’s western border with Pakistan, designed to curb insurgency and smuggling, faced its own challenges and mixed effectiveness.

7. Global Perspectives on Border Fencing:

International examples, like the U.S.-Mexico border and the Gaza fence, highlight the limitations of physical barriers in managing migration and security.

8. Essential Role of Geography and Sociology:

Effective border management requires a blend of surveillance, intelligence, and fostering positive relations with local populations.

9. Strategic and Humanitarian Considerations:

National security strategies must balance tactical victories with the broader impact on civilian populations and regional stability.

Conclusion:

The decision to fence the Myanmar border is a complex interplay of national security, regional politics, and humanitarian concerns. It underscores the necessity of a nuanced approach to border management, considering geographical, sociological, and historical factors.

SRIRAM’s


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