Why China's Military Sees America As The True Enemy

June 17, 2020 Topic: Security Region: Asia Blog Brand: The Reboot Tags: ChinaRussiaMilitaryTechnologyPLAArmy

Why China's Military Sees America As The True Enemy

The reality is that PLA officers are trained to view the U.S. as an enemy, and they will plan and act accordingly.

While the new U.S. national strategy reports are clear-eyed in their assessment of Beijing's intentions, so far little has been done which would indicate that Washington has actually reached a consensus on its China policy and is prepared to execute a long-term strategic competition. Much hard work will be required to turn wise words into action. In that sense, the PLA has a significant head start. It decided to become America's strategic competitor long ago ― and if the "Strong Enemy" didn't realize what was going on, for them, so much the better.

This first appeared on the Project 2049 website here. 

Image: Reuters. 

[1]For examples of various programs, see http://tv.cctv.com/lm/fwxgc/;http://tv.cctv.com/lm/jsbd/20180402.shtml; and http://tv.cctv.com/lm/jskj/.

[2] See Andrew Chubb, "Propaganda, Not Policy: Explaining the PLA's 'Hawkish Faction,'" Jamestown China Brief, July 25, 2013, at https://jamestown.org/program/propaganda-not-policy-explaining-the-plas-hawkish-faction-part-one/.

[3] Cao Zhengrong, Wu Runbo, and Sun Jianjun (eds.), Informatized Joint Operations [信息化联合作战] (Beijing: Liberation Army Press, 2008), p. 236. Note this is from the second edition of the book. It was first written and published in 2006.

[4] Ibid. p. 241.

[5] Ibid. p. 242-262.

[6] Wu Zhizhong (ed.), Course Book on Wartime Political Work [战时政治工作教程] (Beijing: Academy of Military Sciences Press, 2013), p. 194.

[7] Ibid. pp.195-196.

[8] Zhu Hui (ed.), Research on Air Force Strategy Problems [空军战略问题研究] (Beijing: Blue Sky Press, 2014), pp. 306-371.

[9] Ibid. p. 310-315.    

[10] Ibid. p. 369-370. Note that similar anti-American terminology is seen across the spectrum of internal PLA books and field manuals, including authoritative works on topics as diverse as army operations, space warfare, and military medicine.