Beijing. President Xi has demanded that the Chinese military be ready for war because the country’s security is increasingly unstable and uncertain.
At a command centre in Beijing, Xi said the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) new central military commission, or equivalent of its joint chiefs of staff, must ensure the military is combat-ready.
“The unprecedented changes of the world are moving forward at a faster speed, and the instability and uncertainty in our country’s security situation has increased,” he said.
“The entire military must . . . adhere to combat ability as the only, fundamental criterion, concentrate all energy on fighting a war, direct all its work toward warfare, and speed up in enhancing the ability to win a war,” he added. “You must resolutely defend national sovereignty, security and developmental interest and fulfil all the tasks given by the party and the people.”
His comments will raise fears that China remains determined to invade the self-governing island of Taiwan after large-scale war games and exercises featuring ballistic missiles, warships and aircraft this year. Beijing claims the self-governed island as its own and has condemned trips by western politicians such as Greg Hands, Britain’s trade minister, who visited Taipei this week.
As head of the party’s top military group, Xi, 69, was dressed in military fatigues for the inspection of the command centre. State media showed him being applauded by soldiers in a control room featuring a large tactical map of Asia in front of rows of computer consoles and desks. He later posed for an official photograph with senior officers of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA).
Last month Xi secured an unusual third five-year term as the CCP’s general secretary as well as chairman of the party’s highest military commission. In his report to the party congress last month, Xi said national security was a top priority and demanded a quicker pace in building a world-class army.
“We must strengthen training and combat readiness and boost the capabilities of the people’s army to win,” Xi told the congress.
Xi’s tour this week coincided with the country’s biggest air show in the southern city of Zhuhai, where some of China’s most advanced military planes flaunted their capabilities.
Four J-20 stealth fighters, once shrouded in secrecy, flew in formation and thrilled spectators with difficult manoeuvres such as rolling while climbing. The YU-20 aerial tanker and the J-16 fighter jet also featured.
Zhang Xuefeng, a Chinese military expert, told state media that the J-20 showed its “excellent mobility and very flexible aim, which can give it advantages in air combat”.
Song Zhongping, another military analyst, said the PLA is ready to use those capabilities should there be a military conflict in the Taiwan Strait, according to state media. The weapons are intended at deterring Taiwan’s pro-independence forces and its allies such as the US, Song said.
The United States and others have raised concerns about Beijing’s growing threats towards Taiwan. Antony Blinken, the US secretary of state, said last month that Beijing is pursuing reunification with the island on a “much faster timeline”.
Washington has a military pact with Taiwan to supply sufficient hardware and technology to deter an armed attack from the mainland.
During his visit, Hands hosted a reception for Taiwanese business leaders at the British office in Taipei and met President Tsai Ing-wen. The Chinese foreign ministry called on Britain to stop “all exchanges” with the island.
For this article in pdf, please click here:
As an addendum, here is an article in pdf from the Telegraph entitled:
Beijing is committing outrages in Britain and we’re letting them get away with it – by Juliet Samuel – for The Telegraph – 05.11.22.
Xi dressed in military fatigues for the inspection of the new command centre AP