China Military Spotlighted in National Day Parade

From the Associated Press:

China‘s biggest military parade in a decade will show off an army bristling with formidable new capabilities and deliver a potent message to the U.S. and others not to underestimate Beijing’s determination to defend its interests at home and abroad.

The military display is expected to be the centerpiece of a grandiose parade through Beijing on Oct. 1 to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic. A preview rumbled through the Chinese capital a week ago, giving an excited citizenry and foreign military analysts a first-time glimpse at some cutting-edge weaponry…

“The exercise is aimed at not only showing the Chinese people some of the symbols of China’s new great power status, but also showing foreigners that policies based on the presumption of Chinese weakness must be changed,” said Denny Roy, an expert on the Chinese military at Hawaii‘s East-West Center… Officially, Beijing says the parade is nothing more than a move to boost patriotism and showcase the PLA’s modernization drive — an explanation that fits with the oft-repeated government line that the Chinese military buildup poses no threat to others. Chinese defense spending officially reached $71 billion this year, though analysts believe the actual figure is much higher. The spending is second to the U.S. but a fraction of American defense spending.

See also past CDT posts on National Day.

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