Communist China’s recent renaming of 30 areas in India’s Arunachal Pradesh is the latest example of its efforts to assert territorial claims by creating facts on the ground. This marks the third such move since 2017, with 11 areas having been renamed last year. India’s foreign minister has described the Sino-Indian border, along which Arunachal Pradesh lies, as “very tense and dangerous.” Washington, meanwhile, continues to court Beijing.

Its response to China’s advances has also amounted to little more than diplomatic thoughts and prayers. The episode marks the latest example of the Biden Administration’s flawed strategy of engaging China at the expense of America’s strategic allies, like India, key to containing it. Then again, too, Washington’s recent flurry of diplomatic overtures to Beijing, much like those prior, raises doubts as to whether containment is even the aim.

China refers to Arunachal Pradesh as “Zangnan” and insists it is part of Tibet. It insists, too, that the renaming by its Ministry of Civil Affairs is “a legitimate move and China’s sovereign right” to safeguard against “place names in foreign languages that may harm China’s territorial claims.” Though outwardly farcical, Beijing’s renaming tactic is part of a broader suite of greyzone warfare tactics it deploys against India and around the world.