People's Liberation Army (PLA)

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  • Ankur asked: What is the probability of success of a attack on Taiwan by PLA in coming decade or so?

    Jagannath P. Panda replies: I don’t think the PLA would be really plotting for an attack on Taiwan in coming times. Currently, the Cross-Strait ties are at their best after the KMT’s victory in Taiwan in last general election. China would like to consolidate this trend, instead of planning for an attack. Since the day Ma Ying-Jeou’s party has come to power in Taiwan, Cross-Strait ties have improved a lot, and the normal public discussion in Taiwan is to maintain the ‘status-quo’, and improve bilateral relations with mainland China instead of advocating for ‘independence’. In fact, the Taiwanese are progressively realizing the implications of ‘Rise of China’ in global politics today; particularly in economic terms. The Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) signed recently between China and Taiwan is indicative of this. For its part, the Chinese government is happy to see TaiwanChina. For Chinese political leaders, the integration of Taiwan with mainland China is one of the top long-term foreign policy objectives. The latest ECFA is seen as a prelude to the peaceful unification process in the longer term. Many Chinese leaders and experts feel that ‘unification’ with Taiwan is just a matter of time, and they could achieve this task without really using force or plotting an attack. ‘Peaceful unification’ is a long-term strategy in Chinese foreign policy dialogue. That would also help China to consolidate its image as a ‘responsive and responsible’ power at many levels, especially when the PRC aims to become a super power.

    Deflecting the Assassin’s Mace: The Pentagon’s New AirSea Battle Concept and its Strategic Relevance to India

    Indian strategists may well find that many of the tactical quandaries faced today by the US carrier fleets cruising through the Asia Pacific are destined to become those of the Indian Navy in the not-too-distant future. Devising an AirSea Battle concept would enable it to parry blows and reassert sea control.

    July 07, 2010

    Nitin asked: Present Chinese Military force structure in Tibet & implications for India?

    Jagannath P. Panda replies: Though China’s military build-up in Tibet is primarily to take control of the region and make it one of China’s most powerful province; some of its new reach in terms of strategic bombers and long-range missiles would easily enable it to overcome India’s existing detection capabilities. The current plan of missile deployment is attached to the Chinese strategy of its rail linkages offering advantages to the Chinese troops to deploy the rail-car missiles along the border. The PLA’s capacity to move these missiles on wheels and aircraft easily in the Tibetan region indicates the logistical and mechanical revolution that is undergoing in PLA. The completion and execution of the Qinghai–Tibet railway and the expanded railway network up to the Nepal border poses some concerns too. On the Tibetan plateau, a number of new major airbases along with the innumerable newly developed satellite airstrips provide the Chinese Air Force capability to execute offensive operations over the Himalayas. In the west, the Chinese military has invested in logistical build-ups like a metallic highway capable of carrying battle tanks, armoured personnel carriers, and other technological equipment in Lhasa.

    The PLA on Diplomatic Front in 2009

    The participation of the PLA Navy in escort missions in foreign waters is a radical departure from the historical point of view because this is the first time that the PLA Navy is carrying out such tasks not in national waters.

    January 06, 2010

    Twin Purpose Military Exercises of the Chinese PLA in 2009

    The year 2009 has seen the Chinese PLA undertake several military exercises, drills and war games to enhance battle effectiveness as well as promote trust among neighbours.

    December 22, 2009

    PLAAF at 60

    With the inclusion of its Commander in the all powerful Central Military Commission, the PLA Air Force is well placed to play an ever more important role in China’s defence apparatus.

    November 12, 2009

    PLA Integration into the Nepal Army: Challenges and Prospects

    Integration of Maoist combatants into the Nepal Army (NA) has become a contentious issue. Although the stakeholders have agreed on the integration process, they are yet to arrive at a consensus on how to attempt it. They have changed their positions frequently over the issue, which has complicated matters further. The NA holds the view that the lack of conventional training of Maoist combatants, as well as their ideological orientation, would have a serious effect on its professional standards.

    September 2009

    Leadership, Factional Politics and China's Civil-Military Dynamics: Post-17th Party Congress Patterns

    This article highlights the changing dynamics of relations between the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the People's Liberation Army under the current leadership. While the military in China still remains politically loyal to the Communist Party, specification of the role of the military in the Chinese Constitution, generational changes in the CCP, factional politics, and relative depoliticization of the military are some of the factors suggesting a 'bifurcation' between the party and the military.

    September 2009

    Debating China's 'RMA-Driven Military Modernization': Implications for India

    This article intends to examine the notion of 'Revolution in Military Affairs' (RMA) in China and how the People's Liberation Army (zhongguo renmin jiefangjun) is thrusting RMA initiatives on its modernization programme. It sheds light on the issue of China's 'RMA-Driven Military Modernization' programme and situates the effect of these initiatives in the Indian context.

    March 2009

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