Development of China's National Defense and the Armed Forces In the New Era 2012-2022
2022-07-30 22:35


Since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, so does China’s national defense and military development. China’s armed forces have been through an all-around revolutionary restructuring under the firm leadership of the Party in preparation for the next stage, while our defense capabilities have grown in step with our economic strength. Integration of national strategic systems and capabilities has accelerated, sound administrative and support systems for ex-service members have been established, defense mobilization has become more efficient, and greater unity has been cultivated between the military and the government and between the military and civilians. China’s armed forces firmly follow the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, fully implement Xi Jinping Thought on Strengthening the Military, unswervingly uphold the Party’s absolute leadership over the military, continue to enhance political loyalty, strengthen themselves through reform, science and technology and training of competent personnel, and run them in accordance with the law, comprehensively strengthen military training and combat readiness, and work tirelessly to achieve the Party’s goal of building a strong military in the new era, developing world-class forces in an all round way and realizing the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation. 

President Xi has made clear the goal to realize the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation and emphasized that the dream of China’s armed forces to build a strong military is part of the Chinese Dream. President Xi has led China’s armed forces in the great theoretical and practical explorations to build a strong military. Xi Jinping Thought on Strengthening the Military, an outcome of these practices, has raised China’s Marxist military theory and practice to new heights and guided the people’s military to stride forward along its path to build a stronger military.The photo shows that President Xi reviewed the troops during the military parade in celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the PRC on October 1, 2019.

From a strategic perspective to realize the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation, President Xi has reviewed the Party’s 

successful experience of building and governing the military, adapted to the changes in international strategic situation and national security environment, made comprehensive plans on a host of major questions concerning the modernization of national defense and the armed forces, and made clear the Party’s goal of building a strong military in the new era.

The Gutian Military Political Work Conference was held in 2014, marking a new journey of development for the people’s military and a new chapter of enhancing the political loyalty of the armed forces. 

China’s armed forces fully implement the CMC chairman responsibility system and resolutely follow the leadership of the CPC Central Committee, the CMC and President Xi. The photo shows that PLA officers and soldiers attended an exhibition themed on Marching under the Banner of the Party: The People’s Military Celebrating the Centenary of the CPC.

China’s armed forces have carried out in-depth study of the history of the CPC as a source of strength for building a strong military. The photo shows that officers and soldiers of the PLA Air Force reviewed the Party admission oath in front of a J-20 fighter which had participated in the aerial performance celebrating the 100th anniversary of the founding of the CPC.

China’s armed forces pass on the fine traditions of revolution, shoulder the task of strengthening the military, sustain and carry forward the proud traditions and fine conduct of the Party and the military, and bring together a mighty force to build a strong military. The photo shows that officers and soldiers of a “Red Army Division” conducted educational activities on revolutionary traditions in its historical museum.

China’s armed forces bear in mind their glorious history, revere revolutionary martyrs, and honor heroes of the nation. Since 2014, the remains of 825 Chinese People’s Volunteers (CPV) martyrs have been taken back from the ROK in 8 batches and buried in the CPV martyrs’ cemetery in Shenyang.

The strategy of strengthening the military through reform has been fully implemented. This reform has reshaped the leadership and command system of the people’s militay, the modern military structure, and its policies and institutions, and injected fresh life into the people’s military.

The general principle of “the CMC exercising overall leadership, the TCs being responsible for military operations and the services focusing on developing capabilities” was established and the reform began with the reshaping of the military leadership and command system. Fifteen functional organs were reorganized and established under the CMC. A CMC-TCs-Troops operations command system has been established and a CMC-Services-Troops leadership and management system has been put in place.

To maintain China’s national sovereignty, security and development interests and to effectively respond to immediate threats in different strategic directions and major security fields, in-depth and systematic reforms in size, structure and force composition have been carried out to establish a modern military force structure with Chinese characteristics that is capable of winning an informationized war and effectively fulfill its missions and tasks. The photo shows that the officers and soldiers of the reorganized PLAA group armies were reviewed in the military parade celebrating the PLA’s 90th founding anniversary.

With the view to ensure the Party’s absolute leadership over the military, uphold combat capability of the military as the sole and fundamental criterion, and encourage the initiative, enthusiasm and creativity of all member of armed forces, reforms in military policies and institutions have been carried out and the system of socialist military policies and institutions with Chinese characteristics has been formed. The photo shows that the local government and military departments jointly sent the bulletins of glad news to the families of servicemen commended for their meritorious deeds in an effort to make military service a profession respected by the whole society.

China’s armed forces have implemented the strategy of strengthening the armed forces through science and technology to make the people’s military more innovative. Great efforts have been made to improve the independent innovation ability in national defense technologies, build up our country’s strength in science and technology, and excel in innovation and development. The photo shows the staff of the Institute of Computer of National University of Defense Technology. 

China’s armed forces have strengthened the studies on major technologies and new concepts that are prospective, pioneering and exploratory, accelerated the development of technologies in emerging domains, enhanced efforts to seek breakthroughs in core technologies, and strived to win a leading position in cutting-edge technologies. 

The strategy of strengthening the military through talents in the new era has been implemented. In response to the call of building a military capable of fighting and winning wars, China’s armed forces have made efforts to build a new military personnel system, cultivating military talents for joint operations command, new-type combat forces, high-level scientific and technological innovation, and high-quality strategic management. The photo shows a flying instructor in a navy base making comments on the carrier landing maneuvers of the pilots after the day-time flying training.

The project of high-level innovative talents of science and technology has been enhanced and policies for attracting talents, team support and classified assessment have been introduced. The photo shows a sci-tech innovation team of a military educational institution.

China’s armed forces have deepened the reform and innovation of military academies and cultivated new-type, high-quality and specialized military talents possessing both ability and integrity. The photo shows that Naval University of Engineering was holding a commencement ceremony for the graduates in 2021.

The Interim Regulations on Non-commissioned Officers and the related laws and regulations have come into force, in an effort to enhance the professionalism and stability of the NCO corps and ensure that the NCOs are loyal to the Party, professional, dedicated and of fine conduct. The photo shows a unit of the PLA Rocket Force holding a promotion ceremony for master sergeants first class.

China’s armed forces have established a unified system of civilian staff, expanded the positions for them, and attracted civilian talents to serve the military. The photo shows the civilian staff formation marching in the military parade celebrating the 70th anniversary of the founding of the PRC. 

In May 2017, President Xi signed the order to launch the Regulations on Military Legislation.

In February 2015, the CMC issued the Decision on Promoting Law-Based Governance of the Military and Strict Enforcement of the Discipline in the New Era.

A mobilization ceremony

Studying the Constitution of the PRC

Escorting state guests at the G20 Summit in gallant array

Firing the gun salute in concerted action

The modernization and informationization of the military should be achieved through law-based governance. China’s armed forces have implemented the strategy of running the armed forces in accordance with the law, accelerated the transformations in the way of running the military and improved law-based governance in the development of national defense and the military.

China’s armed forces have vigorously cultivated the officers’ and soldiers’ fighting spirit and heroism of “no fear of hardship or death”. The photo shows officers and soldiers of a PLA Army unit conducting long-range raiding operation. 

China’s armed forces resolutely fulfill their missions and tasks in the new era to safeguard national sovereignty, security, and development interests. The photo shows the PLANS Liaoning task force conducting realistic training in the far seas. 

China’s armed forces conduct military operations with firm will and appropriate flexibility, respond effectively to external military threats, deter separatist activities pursuing “Taiwan independence”, and resolutely safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity. The photo shows an ETC Air Force unit organizing realistic training.

China’s armed forces insist on training for combat and promoting combat capability through training so as to train in accordance with actual combat requirements and integrate military training with real combat. The photo shows a PLAAF Golden Helmet pilot conducting confrontation training in a new type of indigenous fighter aircraft.

Real combat conditions have been created to enhance the difficulty and intensity of force-on-force exercises. The photo shows a PLARF missile brigade conducting launch training in a frigid environment.

China’s armed force have organized extensive contests and competitions to encourage officers and soldiers to step up military training. The photo shows the officers and soldiers of a PAP unit organizing a water-based counter-terrorism exercise.

A combat-oriented logistics system has been built. The photo shows a PLAJLSF unit conducting exercise on the emergency opening of a field medical cabin and organizing battlefield first aid.

Since 2013, more than 500 sets of oxygen generating units have been built for PLA troops stationed at an altitude of more than 3,000 meters. The photo shows the officers and soldiers on the plateau having daily oxygen intake.

In response to the sudden outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the people’s military responded rapidly upon orders. The photo shows that in February 2020, over 4,000 military medical personnel rushed to Wuhan to carry out medical treatment.

During the national war against the COVID-19 pandemic, a “wartime baby”, Zhuang Zhuang, was born in the CTC General Hospital, whose mother had to give birth prematurely due to a COVID-19 infection that left her in critical condition. 

After the all-out efforts by the hospital, the mother and the baby were finally saved. The photo shows Zhuang Zhuang sleeping peacefully in the arms of medical personnel. 

In the summer of 2020, severe floods struck multiple provinces in southern China. The military bravely took on the most difficult and arduous tasks and scored a major victory in flood control and disaster relief. The photo shows the officers and soldiers of a PLAA unit fighting floods at the front lines.

China’s armed forces support and participate in local economic and social development. In Xinjiang, nearly 10,000 officers and soldiers have formed partnership with members of ethnic minorities to help them get out of poverty. The people’s military and the local populace have thus become close “relatives”. The photo shows officers and soldiers from the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps of the PAP forming partnership with and recognizing the local people as their “relatives”.

China’s armed forces have participated in poverty alleviation. By 2020, all the 4,100 villages, 293,000 households, and 924,000 people receiving targeted support from the military have been lifted out of poverty. The photo shows the pupils at Lan Tian Primary School built with the assistance of an Air Force unit in Hetian, together with officers and soldiers who serve as counselors for the pupils.

A medical team to assist Tibet from a naval hospital reached Shenzha County, Tibet, providing medical services for the Tibetan compatriots.

China’s armed forces have actively participated in regional security dialogues and promoted multilateral security cooperation mechanisms, making important contributions to regional security and stability. In October 2019, the 9th Beijing 

Xiangshan Forum was held. The photo shows the forum site.

China’s armed forces have strengthened cooperation with developing countries and conducted extensive military exchanges and professional interactions with them. In July 2019, China’s Ministry of National Defense held the 1st China-Africa Peace and Security Forum in Beijing.

Implementing the vision of a community with a shared future for mankind and fulfilling the obligations of the armed forces of a major country, China’s armed forces have been providing the international community with more and more public security goods. In accordance with relevant UN Security Council resolutions, By January 2022, over 120 Chinese PLA Navy vessels and more than 31,000 officers and sailors have been regularly deployed in 40 convoys to the Gulf of Aden and the waters off the coast of Somali in vessel protection operations. They have provided security protection for over 7,000 Chinese and foreign ships in total, over half of which were foreign ships. The photo shows the 35th PLAN Escort Task Group on its mission.

In 2015, the 19th PLAN Escort Task Group helped evacuate Chinese nationals from Yemen, and safely evacuated over 600 Chinese citizens and more than 200 foreign citizens from 15 other countries. The photo shows that the foreign expats who were about to be evacuated aboard PLANS Linyi giving thumbs-up to the Chinese troops on board. 

Since it was commissioned, the PLAN hospital ship Ark Peace has fulfilled voyages code-named “Mission Harmony” and provided humanitarian medical services overseas. By 2019, it has conducted 9 overseas operations, sailing more than 240,000 nautical miles, providing services to 43 countries and regions and to over 230,000 people.

Chinese peacekeepers are not only guardians of peace but also ambassadors of friendship. With concrete actions, they have brought peace and lit up hope for the people devastated by war. The photo shows the security contingent of China’s 4th batch of peacekeeping forces to Mali delivering water to the local people. 

After the massive volcanic eruption in Tonga in January 2022, the Chinese military dispatched air force transport aircraft and naval vessels to conduct humanitarian disaster relief operations, delivering over 1,000 tons of emergency and reconstruction supplies to Tonga. The photo shows the unloading of the aid materials transported by China’s Y-20 transport aircraft at the airport of Nuku’alofa, capital of Tonga.

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