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Xi Jinping’s Struggle with China’s Military Raises Concerns About WWIII

China’s President Xi Jinping is currently locked in a power struggle within China’s military, leading to concerns about the country’s military direction. A report from a news source suggests that this internal struggle may have broader implications, potentially drawing the United States into a global conflict.

Xi Jinping’s Quest for Military Control

Credit: Chinese military vehicles of PLA (Peoples Liberation Army) parade past the Tiananmen Rostrum during a military parade of the grand celebration for the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Peoples Republic of China, in Beijing, China, Thursday, 1 O — Photo by ChinaImages

Xi Jinping has been striving to assert control over China’s military, with a focus on purging officers he believes are not ready or willing to engage in warfare. Experts argue that he is aiming to ensure that China’s military is led by officers prepared for combat.

Dismissal of Senior Officers

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On December 29, 2023, Xi Jinping dismissed nine senior military officers, a move that raised eyebrows and sparked discussions about the motives behind these sudden removals.

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Corruption As Key Reason?

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While some suggested corruption as a reason, others believe it is more about weeding out officers reluctant to go to war.

Rooting Out Corruption or Readying for War?

Credit: Chinese Navy soldiers of PLA (Peoples Liberation Army) shout slogans during a training session for the upcoming military parade on October 1 in Beijing, China, 28 June 2009 — Photo by ChinaImages

Joel Wuthnow, a senior research fellow, sees both goals as aligned. The removals, he argues, indicate Xi’s concerns about the quality of personnel and equipment invested in over the past decade, particularly in units like China’s Rocket Force, crucial in any military campaign.

China’s Regional Conflicts

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China has been involved in various low-level conflicts with neighboring countries, including India, Japan, the Philippines, and Taiwan. Concerns have grown about a potential Chinese invasion of Taiwan, given increased military activities in the region.

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Xi’s Rhetoric and Political Messaging

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Xi Jinping has escalated his rhetoric, emphasizing China’s intention to reunify and control Taiwan. He has conveyed this message to U.S. President Biden during face-to-face meetings, creating markers that could lead to a conflict.

Caution After Russia’s Invasion

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Some experts believe that Xi Jinping has become more cautious following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The destabilization experienced by Vladimir Putin’s regime in Russia may have led Xi to fear a similar outcome in China if a military adventure goes awry.

Global Conflict Concerns

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Analysts like Gordon Chang raise alarms about the potential for a third world war, citing widespread conflicts worldwide. The current landscape, characterized by various regional conflicts, could merge into a larger global conflict, drawing in countries like the United States.

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Xi’s Strategy in Historical Context

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Chang suggests that Xi Jinping is following a strategy reminiscent of Mao’s Peasant Revolution playbook, encircling the cities from the countryside. In this analogy, Xi views various regional conflicts as the countryside and the United States as the city, potentially pulling the U.S. into a broader conflict.

Internal Struggle

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The internal struggle within China’s military and President Xi Jinping’s assertive military moves have raised concerns about the possibility of a broader global conflict. As China’s actions continue to evolve, analysts and world leaders closely monitor the situation for potential implications on a global scale.

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