Imagined Enemies: China Prepares for Uncertain War


Published By

Stanford University Press, page(s): 384

July 2006

Imagined Enemies

This is the fourth and final volume in a pioneering series on the Chinese military. It begins with an examination of Chinese military culture and history, with special attention to the transition from Mao Zedong's revolutionary doctrine and the conflict with Moscow to Beijing's preoccupation with Taiwanese separatism and preparations for war to thwart it. Because such a war might involve the United States, the Chinese have concentrated on measures to deter American intervention. Part II focuses on the military and decisionmaking, first in the National Command Authority and then in the People's Liberation Army's command-and-control prioritizing system. Part III provides a detailed study of the Second Artillery, China's strategic rocket forces. Based in part on interviews, the book provides an unprecedented look at its history, operational structure, modernization, and strategy. This is followed by a historical account of the air force's long effort to modernize and its role in joint operations and air defense. The book concludes with the transformation of military strategy and shows how it is being tested in military exercises with Taiwan and the United States as "imagined enemies."

A Chinese translation by Litai Xue was published by Mirror Books, Hong Kong, in 2007.

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