Thursday 15 November 2007

China's National Defense Preface issued by the Information Office of the State Council People's Republic of China part1

To uphold world peace, promote common development and seek cooperation and win-win is the common wish of the people around the world and an irresistible trend of our times. Committed to peace, development and cooperation, China pursues a road of peaceful development, and endeavors to build, together with other countries, a harmonious world of enduring peace and common prosperity.
Never before has China been so closely bound up with the rest of the world as it is today. The
Chinese government works to advance both the fundamental interests of the Chinese people and the common interests of the peoples of the rest of the world, and pursues a defense policy which is purely defensive in nature. China's national defense, in keeping with and contributing to the country's development and security strategies, aims at maintaining national security and unity, and ensuring the realization of the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in an
all-round way. China is determined to remain a staunch force for global peace, security and stability.
China's national defense and military modernization, conducted on the basis of steady economic
development, is the requirement of keeping up with new trends in the global revolution and
development in military affairs, and of maintaining China's national security and development.
China will not engage in any arms race or pose a military threat to any other country. At the new stage in the new century, we will take the scientific development outlook as an important guiding principle for the building of national defense and military affairs, vigorously advance the
revolution in military affairs with Chinese features, and strive to realize an all-round,
coordinated and sustainable development in our country's national defense and military capabilities.

I. The Security Environment
Peace and development remain the principal themes in today's world, and the overall international security environment remains stable. But, uncertainties and destabilizing factors are on the increase, and new challenges and threats are continuously emerging.World peace and security face more opportunities than challenges. The world is at a critical stage, moving toward multi-polarity. Progress is expected in addressing the serious imbalances in the international strategic alignment. The major international forces compete with and hold each other in check. But, they also maintain coordination and practical cooperation in their mutual relationships, and draw on each other's strengths. Some major developing countries and regional

groupings have grown in power, and the developing world as a whole is becoming stronger. Economic

globalization accelerates and science and technology make rapid progress; there are profound

changes in the international division of labor, global and regional economic cooperation is being

vigorously promoted, leading to increasing interdependence among countries. More dialogues are

being conducted on traditional security issues, and cooperation in non-traditional security is

developing in depth. To address development and security issues through coordination, cooperation

and multilateral mechanism is the preferred approach of the international community. The United

Nations' status and role in world affairs are being upheld and strengthened. World wars or

all-out confrontation between major countries are avoidable for the foreseeable future.

The international community is increasingly facing comprehensive, diverse and complex security

threats. The world is not yet peaceful. Political, economic and security problems and

geographical, ethnic and religious contradictions are interconnected and complex. Hegemonism and

power politics remain key factors undermining international security. Non-traditional security

threats present greater danger, and local turmoil caused by war is on and off, and some hotspots

cannot be removed in a short time. The impact of economic globalization is spreading into the

political, security and social fields. Global economic development is uneven, and the gap between

the North and the South is widening. Security issues related to energy, resources, finance,

information and international shipping routes are mounting. International terrorist forces remain

active, shocking terrorist acts keep occurring. Natural disasters, serious communicable diseases,

environmental degradation, international crime and other transnational problems are becoming more

damaging in nature.

A revolution in military affairs is developing in depth worldwide. Military competition based on

informationization is intensifying. There has not been major change in the imbalances in relative

military strength. Some developed countries have increased their input into the military and

speeded up R&D of high-tech weaponry to gain military superiority. Many developing countries are

also upgrading their armaments and modernizing their military forces. The situation regarding the

non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction remains grave and complex. The international

non-proliferation regime faces major challenges. The practice of a small number of countries that

have intensified their military alliances and resorted to force or threats of force in

international affairs has shown new developments, which hinder efforts to improve international


The overall security environment in the Asia-Pacific region remains stable. The regional economy

maintains an unprecedented strong momentum of growth, and a framework of open and mutually

beneficial cooperation based on equality and in diversified forms is taking shape in the region.

Multilateral security dialogue and cooperation are being enhanced. The Shanghai Cooperation

Organization (SCO) has entered a new stage of substantive growth, contributing to the

establishment of a new mode of state-to-state relations. ASEAN has made steady progress in

community-building and in talks on establishing free trade areas with other countries. East Asian

cooperation, which is conducted mainly through the ASEAN plus China, Japan and the ROK (10+3)

channel, has expanded in scope and its institutional building is improving constantly, continuing

to play a major role in promoting peace, stability and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region. The

East Asia Summit has provided a new platform for East Asian cooperation. Moreover, significant

progress has been made in South Asian regional cooperation. There is improvement in the relations

between India and Pakistan.

There are growing complexities in the Asia-Pacific security environment. There is a new

adjustment going on in the strategic alignment and relations among major countries in the region,

and new changes have occurred in the hotspots in the region. The United States is accelerating

its realignment of military deployment to enhance its military capability in the Asia-Pacific

region. The United States and Japan are strengthening their military alliance in pursuit of

operational integration. Japan seeks to revise its constitution and exercise collective

self-defense. Its military posture is becoming more external-oriented. The DPRK has launched

missile tests and conducted a nuclear test. Thus, the situation on the Korean Peninsula and in

Northeast Asia has become more complex and challenging. Iraq and Afghanistan continue to face

turbulence. The Middle East has become more volatile. A settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue

is not yet in sight. Territorial disputes, conflicting claims over maritime rights and interests,

and ethnic and religious discords undermine trust and cooperation among states. The threat of

terrorism, separatism and extremism remains serious. In addition, some countries face growing

internal problems caused by social and economic transition.

China's overall security environment remains sound. China is committed to building a moderately

prosperous society in an all-round way and a socialist harmonious society, and it enjoys steady

economic growth, political stability, ethnic harmony and social progress. Its overall national

strength has considerably increased, as has its international standing and influence. China's

practical cooperation with major countries continues to grow, its friendly relations with its

neighboring countries have developed steadily, and it is forging strong ties with other

developing countries. This has given rise to a new relationship of mutual benefit and win-win

between China and other countries. The Chinese government has taken a number of significant

measures to improve relations across the Taiwan Straits, thus promoting cross-Straits relations

toward peace and stability.

However, China's security still faces challenges that must not be neglected. The growing

interconnections between domestic and international factors and interconnected traditional and

non-traditional factors have made maintaining national security a more challenging task. The

struggle to oppose and contain the separatist forces for "Taiwan independence" and their

activities remains a hard one. By pursuing a radical policy for "Taiwan independence," the Taiwan

authorities aim at creating "de jure Taiwan independence" through "constitutional reform, " thus

still posing a grave threat to China's sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as to peace

and stability across the Taiwan Straits and in the Asia-Pacific region as a whole. The United

States has reiterated many times that it will adhere to the "one China" policy and honor the

three joint communiqés between China and the United States. But, it continues to sell advanced

weapons to Taiwan, and has strengthened its military ties with Taiwan. A small number of

countries have stirred up a racket about a "China threat," and intensified their preventive

strategy against China and strove to hold its progress in check. Complex and sensitive historical

and current issues in China's surrounding areas still affect its security environment.

China persists in continuing its peaceful development road. Balancing developments in both

domestic and international situations, it is well prepared to respond to complexities in the

international security environment. Guided by a security strategy of promoting both development

and security, China strives to build a socialist harmonious society at home and a harmonious

world to ensure both its overall national security and enduring peace in the world. It endeavors

to enhance both development and security, both internal security and external security and both

traditional security and non-traditional security; works to uphold its sovereignty, unity and

territorial integrity and promote national development; and strives to sustain the important

period of strategic opportunity for national development. China is committed to fostering a

cooperative relationship of mutual benefit and win-win with other countries and working with them

to promote common security.

II. National Defense Policy

China pursues a national defense policy which is purely defensive in nature. China's national

defense provides the guarantee for maintaining China's security and unity, and realizing the goal

of building a moderately prosperous society in an all-round way. To build a powerful and

fortified national defense is a strategic task of China's modernization drive.

China pursues a three-step development strategy in modernizing its national defense and armed

forces, in accordance with the state's overall plan to realize modernization. The first step is

to lay a solid foundation by 2010, the second is to make major progress around 2020, and the

third is to basically reach the strategic goal of building informationized armed forces and being

capable of winning informationized wars by the mid-21st century.

China's national defense policy for the new stage in the new century is defined as follows:

· Upholding national security and unity, and ensure the interests of national development. This

includes guarding against and resisting aggression, defending against violation of China's

territorial sea and air space, and borders; opposing and containing the separatist forces for

"Taiwan independence" and their activities, taking precautions against and cracking down on

terrorism, separatism and extremism in all forms. The People's Liberation Army (PLA) is dedicated

to performing its historical missions for the new stage in the new century, namely, providing an

important source of strength for consolidating the ruling position of the Communist Party of

China (CPC), providing a solid security guarantee for sustaining the important period of

strategic opportunity for national development, providing a strong strategic support for

safeguarding national interests, and playing a major role in maintaining world peace and

promoting common development. It improves its capabilities of countering various security

threats, accomplishes diversified military tasks, and ensures that it can effectively respond to

crises, maintain peace, deter and win wars under complex circumstances.

· Achieving the all-round, coordinated and sustainable development of China's national defense

and armed forces. China pursues a policy of coordinated development of national defense and

economy. It keeps the modernization of China's national defense and armed forces as an integral

part of its social and economic development, so as to ensure that the modernization of its

national defense and armed forces advance in step with the national modernization drive. China

works in a comprehensive way to ensure that its armed forces are revolutionary in nature,

modernized and regularized. It strives to ensure coordination between the revolution in military

affairs with Chinese features and preparations for military struggle, mechanization and

informationization, combat force building of services and arms, current and long-term

development, and efforts devoted to the main and secondary strategic directions. China works to

deepen the adjustment and reform of its military organizations and structures, as well as

policies and systems, address deep-seated impediments and problems in its military structures and

mechanisms which hinder the development of its armed forces, boost innovation in its military

organizational structure and military management, and improve efficiency in its military

modernization drive.

· Enhancing the performance of the armed forces with informationization as the major measuring

criterion. The PLA, taking mechanization as the foundation and informationization as the driving

force, promotes the composite development of informationization and mechanization to achieve

overall capability improvement in the fields of firepower, assault, mobility, protection and

information. The PLA pursues a strategy of strengthening itself by means of science and

technology, and works to accelerate change in the generating mode of war fighting capabilities by

drawing on scientific and technological advances. The PLA seeks to raise its capabilities of

independent innovation in weaponry and equipment, as well as defense-related science and

technology, and strives to make major breakthroughs in some basic, pioneering and technological

fields of strategic importance. It is stepping up its efforts to build a joint operational

command system, training system and support system for fighting informationized wars and enhance

the building of systems integration of services and arms. The PLA is carrying out a strategic

project for training a large contingent of new-type and high-caliber military personnel suited to

the task of informationization of the armed forces and competent for operational tasks under

conditions of informationization. The PLA is also working to make its training more

technology-intensive and innovative in training programs, means and methods.

· Implementing the military strategy of active defense. The PLA ensures that it is well prepared

for military struggle, with winning local wars under conditions of informationization and

enhancing national sovereignty, security, and interests of development as its objective. It will

upgrade and develop the strategic concept of people's war, and work for close coordination

between military struggle and political, economic, diplomatic, cultural and legal endeavors, uses

strategies and tactics in a comprehensive way, and takes the initiative to prevent and defuse

crises and deter conflicts and wars. The PLA will establish step by step a modern national

defense mobilization system that is centralized and unified, well structured, rapid in reaction,

and authoritative and efficient. Taking joint operations as the basic form, the PLA aims to bring

the operational strengths of different services and arms into full play. The Army aims at moving

from regional defense to trans-regional mobility, and improving its capabilities in air-ground

integrated operations, long-distance maneuvers, rapid assaults and special operations. The Navy

aims at gradual extension of the strategic depth for offshore defensive operations and enhancing

its capabilities in integrated maritime operations and nuclear counterattacks. The Air Force aims

at speeding up its transition from territorial air defense to both offensive and defensive

operations, and increasing its capabilities in the areas of air strike, air and missile defense,

early warning and reconnaissance, and strategic projection. The Second Artillery Force aims at

progressively improving its force structure of having both nuclear and conventional missiles, and

raising its capabilities in strategic deterrence and conventional strike under conditions of


· Pursuing a self-defensive nuclear strategy. China's nuclear strategy is subject to the

state's nuclear policy and military strategy. Its fundamental goal is to deter other countries

from using or threatening to use nuclear weapons against China. China remains firmly committed to

the policy of no first use of nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstances. It

unconditionally undertakes not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against

non-nuclear-weapon states or nuclear-weapon-free zones, and stands for the comprehensive

prohibition and complete elimination of nuclear weapons. China upholds the principles of

counterattack in self-defense and limited development of nuclear weapons, and aims at building a

lean and effective nuclear force capable of meeting national security needs. It endeavors to

ensure the security and reliability of its nuclear weapons and maintains a credible nuclear

deterrent force. China's nuclear force is under the direct command of the Central Military

Commission (CMC). China exercises great restraint in developing its nuclear force. It has never

entered into and will never enter into a nuclear arms race with any other country.

· Fostering a security environment conducive to China's peaceful development. China maintains

military contacts with other countries on the basis of the Five Principles of Peaceful

Coexistence, and develops cooperative military relations that are non-aligned,

non-confrontational and not directed against any third party. China takes part in international

security cooperation, strengthens strategic coordination and consultation with major powers and

neighboring countries, and conducts bilateral or multilateral joint military exercises. It

promotes the establishment of just and effective collective security mechanisms and military

confidence-building mechanisms, and works with other countries to prevent conflicts and wars.

China stands for effective disarmament and arms control that are just, reasonable, comprehensive

and balanced in nature. China opposes nuclear proliferation, and endeavors to advance the process

of international nuclear disarmament. China observes the purposes and principles of the UN

Charter, honors its international obligations, and participates in UN peacekeeping operations,

international counter-terrorism cooperation and international disaster relief operations. It

plays an active part in maintaining global and regional peace and stability.

III. China's Leadership and Administration System for National Defense

China has established and keeps improving a leadership and administration system for national

defense in accordance with the Constitution, the National Defense Law and other relevant laws.

The state exercises unified leadership over national defense activities. China's armed forces are

under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC). The Central Military Commission (CMC)

of the CPC and that of the People's Republic of China (PRC) are completely the same in their

composition and in their function of exercising leadership over the armed forces. The CMC

chairman has overall responsibility for its work.

The National People's Congress (NPC) elects the chairman of the CMC of the PRC and, upon

nomination by the chairman, decides on the choice of all other members of the CMC. The NPC

decides on war and peace and exercises other functions and powers relating to national defense as

prescribed by the Constitution. When the NPC is in recess, its Standing Committee decides on the

proclamation of a state of war, decides on the general or partial mobilization of the country,

and exercises other functions and powers relating to national defense as prescribed by the

Constitution. The president of the PRC, in pursuance of the decisions of the NPC and its Standing

Committee, may proclaim a state of war, issue mobilization orders, and exercise other functions

and powers relating to national defense as prescribed by the Constitution.

The State Council directs and administers national defense building in the following areas:

making national defense development programs and plans, formulating principles, policies and

administrative regulations for defense building, administering defense expenditure and assets,

directing and administering national defense scientific research and production, directing and

administering work related to mobilization of the national economy, mobilization of people's

armed forces, people's air defense and national defense traffic, directing and administering the

work of supporting the military and giving preferential treatment to families of servicemen and

martyrs, as well as the resettlement of servicemen discharged from active service. It also

directs national defense education and, jointly with the CMC, the building of the Chinese

People's Armed Police Force (PAPF) and the militia, the work concerning enlistment and reserve

service, and the administration of border, coastal and air defenses, and exercises other

functions and powers relating to national defense building as prescribed by law. Under the State

Council are the Ministry of National Defense (MND) and other departments concerning national

defense building.

The CMC directs and exercises unified command of China's armed forces. It has the following

functions and powers: deciding on the military strategy and operational guidelines of the armed

forces, directing and administering the building of the PLA, submitting proposals related to

national defense to the NPC or its Standing Committee, formulating military regulations, issuing

decisions and orders, deciding on the structure and organization of the PLA, appointing and

removing, training, evaluating, and rewarding and punishing members of the armed forces,

approving systems and development programs and plans for weaponry and equipment, and exercising

other functions and powers as prescribed by law.

The PLA's General Staff Headquarters, General Political Department, General Logistics Department

and General Armaments Department are departments of the CMC respectively responsible for

military, political, logistical and equipment work. The General Staff Headquarters organizes and

directs the development of China's armed forces, and organizes and commands their military

operations. Under it are departments in charge of operations, intelligence, communications,

military training and arms, adjutant and force structure, mobilization, electronic

countermeasures, Army aviation, foreign affairs, etc. Its main functions and powers are to put

forward proposals on major issues of military building and operations, organize and exercise

strategic command, formulate programs, rules and regulations for military work, and organize and

direct war preparations, as well as military training and mobilization. The General Political

Department administers the armed forces' Party work, and organizes their political work. Under it

are departments in charge of Party affairs, personnel, publicity, security, discipline

inspection, civil-military affairs, etc. Its main responsibilities are to ensure the armed

forces' compliance with and implementation of the lines, principles and policies of the Party and

the Constitution and laws of the state, draw up general and specific policies for political work,

formulate rules and regulations for political work, and make arrangements for, supervise and

provide guidance to the political work of the armed forces. The General Logistics Department

administers the logistical work of the armed forces. Under it are departments in charge of

financial matters, quartermaster materials and petroleum, oils and lubricants, health

administration, military transportation, capital construction and barracks, auditing, etc. Its

main responsibilities are to formulate programs, rules and regulations for logistical

construction, deploy logistical forces, organize logistical mobilization and provide logistical

support, carry out the application, allocation, budgeting and final accounting of military

expenditure, and conduct material procurement. The General Armaments Department administers the

provision of equipment for the armed forces. Under it are departments in charge of overall

planning, equipment for all services and arms, procurement for Army's military equipment R&D,

general-purpose equipment support, electronic information infrastructure, etc. Its main

responsibilities are to formulate strategies, programs and plans, policies, and rules and

regulations for equipment development, organize equipment R&D, experimentation, procurement,

combat service, maintenance and support, and administer the PLA's funds for equipment buildup.

The Army has no independent leading body, and the leadership of it is exercised by the four

general headquarters/departments. A military area command exercises direct leadership over the

Army units under it. The Army has 18 combined corps, which are mobile combat troops. The Navy,

Air Force and Second Artillery Force, each of which has a leading body consisting of the

headquarters, the political department, the logistics department and the armaments department,

direct the military, political, logistical and equipment work of their respective troops, and

take part in the command of joint operations. The Navy organizes and commands maritime operations

conducted independently by its troops or in support of maritime operations. There are three

fleets under the Navy, namely, the Beihai Fleet, Donghai Fleet and Nanhai Fleet. Each fleet has

flotillas, aviation divisions, etc. under its command. The Air Force organizes and commands air

operations conducted independently by itself or with Air Force personnel as the main fighting

force, as well as air defense operations in the capital area. It has an air command in each of

the seven military area commands of Shenyang, Beijing, Lanzhou, Jinan, Nanjing, Guangzhou and

Chengdu, respectively. Under an air command are aviation divisions, ground-to-air missile

divisions (brigades and regiments), antiaircraft artillery brigades (regiments), radar brigades

(regiments) and other support troops. In major directions and key target areas there are also

corps- or division-level command posts. The Second Artillery Force organizes and commands its own

troops in case of launching nuclear counterattacks with strategic missiles and conducting

operations with conventional missiles. Under it are missile and training bases, and relevant

support troops.

Military area commands (theaters of war) are military organizations set up according to the

administrative divisions of the state, geographical locations, strategic and operational

directions, and operational tasks. They are CMC-appointed organs for commanding joint theater

operations. They direct the military, political, logistical and equipment work of the troops

under them. Under a military area command are the headquarters, the political department, the

joint logistics department and the armaments department. A military area command is mainly in

charge of formulating programs and plans for combat readiness and operations of troops in the

theater and for the reserve force buildup of the theater, organizing and commanding joint theater

operations involving different services and arms, and providing joint logistical support. At

present, the PLA has seven military area commands, namely, Shenyang, Beijing, Lanzhou, Jinan,

Nanjing, Guangzhou and Chengdu. Under a military area command are combined Army corps, units of

various Army arms, logistical support units and provincial military commands.

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