Western news media news is designed for western audience consumption. Pointing out the suffering of people in other countries is something that people with empathy want to know about. For example, when Western media points out the suffering of Palestinians, we hear that this is because of anti-Israel bias. The reality is, most people aren't opposed to Israel, they're concerned with the suffering imposed by the occupation, and the ancillary effects on their own national interest due to regional instability. The goal of the media isn't conflict and war, it's awareness and political change. If there's a genocide happening, I want to know about it. If the US backed Saudi proxy war in Yemen is destroying huge number of lives because of American made weapons or policy, I want to know about it, and if a large US trading partner is locking people in Xinjiang and even manufacturing with slave labor, I'd rather buy my products somewhere else.
>"Take your imagined trilateral water war as an example, have you looked into how minor the supply is to India?".
Of course, have you? There are 130 million people who live in the Brahmaputra basin. And 1 billion downstream of the Hindu Kush. You don't think India is concerned about the dams going up in Kashmir and the Tibetan Plateau? "damming for electricity has little effect on total volume of flow" you're talking past damns, the concern is over future mega dams.
>"Otoh, when US dammed the Colorado the water was diverted for agriculture and urban consumption. The river basically dried up before reaching Mexico."
Yeah, and that was bad for both the environment, and for Mexico, which is exactly why people are concerned about China's activity, not just for geo-political reasons and the 1+ billion people dependent on the Tibetan plateau water supply, but the environmental damage that could result as well. Your own example shows exactly why those dependent on Tibetan and Hindu Kush supplies should be concerned about dam building, in which they have little say over.
By all means, use past US transgressions as a road map for why we should be concerned. Take Belt and Road Initiative. Sucker someone into taking a large loan, make them use the loaned money to buy from your own country's companies, and then when the debtor can't pay, seize concessions. The US played this out extremely well all over the world (see _Confessions of an Economic Hitman_ https://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Economic-Hit-John-Perkins...), and it's being repeated: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/25/world/asia/china-sri-lank...
It's because of how awful the US's policy was in doing the same thing in South America and Africa that I'm concerned now about what I see happening now, essentially neo-colonialism.
However, the real issue I sense, is that a lot of 五毛 and 玻璃心 don't want to hear any criticism, even if it's legitimate, because of elevated nationalism dialed up by Xi over the years. And it is this rising nationalism, in the US with Trump, in Europe (e.g. in Hungary), and in China that we should be worried about. We've managed to temporarily put down Trumpism here, but Xi made himself President for life, and authoritarianism combined with rising nationalism and economic power is not a good recipe, if the 20th century taught us anything.
P.S. As for the Brahmaputra river, according to Indian officials: "Out of five major tributaries of Brahmaputra, only three come from China, rest are from Arunachal Pradesh. Of the total water entering (Brahmaputra), only 7% is contributed by precipitation in China." https://www.livemint.com/Politics/jksr4ft6Jn5wjvJAEGwD5L/Ind...
I've lived in China, much of what the CCP is doing infrastructure wise is admirable. They've built 10s of thousands of miles of highways, high speed rail, waterways, electric grid, into historically underserved areas. And they have understandable paranoia having observed the breakup of the USSR, as well as bloody historical Chinese rebellions, like the Taiping rebellion, about what could happen if there is a revolution against the ruling party. This paranoia has perhaps fueled an overreaction, that is driving historical levels of brainwashing nationalism, down to the elementary school level, and insane levels of surveillance, etc. After 9/11, the US government utilized fear from terrorism to launch the Patriot Act, the Global War On Terror, invasion of Iraq, and NSA surveillance programs. Xi similarly latched on a few Uyghur terrorist incidents as an excuse to do, IMHO, massive violations of human rights.
I don't think it's a stable situation. Sooner or later something will give, either nationalism will spill over into a conflict because eventually the nationalists need to start an invasion against someone (probably Taiwan) to regain lost honor or satisfy a past humiliation, or if there is ever a financial implosion, they'll be great internal unrest, and without the "relief valve" of even pseudo-democracy, you'll great more and more tightening by the government, until a fed up population who is facing a declining economy for the first time, destabilizes the government.
This is not really about what Wolf Blitzer is saying on CNN, it's more or less about personal observations I see around rising fascism and nationalism around the world that has be deeply worried about this century, and that's without considering the Thucydides’s Trap, and that 12 of the last 16 confrontations between a superpower and a rising superpower have resulted in war.
I can't solve the problems of the Uyghurs anymore than I can solve climate change. But do you think people should have sat quietly by in 1930s while Germany murdered Jews just because they couldn't do anything directly about it? I could choose not to buy Chinese goods the same as I could choose to recycle, but we all know it doesn't do anything. So the real change must occur at higher levels, that is, Western governments and corporations need to stop appeasing China for market access, compromising their art, their IP, just to please the CCP, only to be betrayed later, while at the same time, supporting violations of human rights. Condition your contracts, your trade deals, on transparency, protection for the environment, humane treatment, etc.
Right now Xi Jinping is thinking China can eventually survive on their domestic market only. Welp, that'll be a good experiment to try that Western governments can help with, and if the result is a severe economic recession in China, it may eventually lead to a new Chinese President as other CCP factions takeover, who takes the country in a different direction.