PLA Leadership shuffle

October 23, 2012

All the major news agencies reported a few moves in the Chinese People's Liberation Army leadership yesterday including:


One might have expected the PLA to move toward a new "jointness" but the military announcements we've seen so far do not reflect this in the CMC leadership . . . for real 'jointness' an Air Force, Navy or Second Artillery chief would become a CMC vice chair or chief of a PLA general department - as of now, the PLA general departments basically service the ground forces and their, whilst each of the other services (air, navy and strategic rocket forces) has its own general department . . . (It would be amusing if Submariner Adm Ding Yiping gets a major promotion . . . that would shake things up . . . after all, he seems to be the brains behind China's new air-independent-propulsion attack sub fleet.) It will also be interesting to see if Hu Jintao manages to stay on as CMC Chair  . . . I don't believe the PLA wants "two centers" 兩個中心 again . . . as some PLA wags pointed out in 2002, "one can be loyal to 'one center'" (忠) but "two centers" is (患) disaster. I think the PLA is very comfortable with Xi Jinping's nationalistic weltanschauung . . . so if Hu manages to hang on, it will reflect a unwieldy rebalance in the political factions.


Also, if I recall, General Liu Yuan (son of the sainted, deposed, martyred former President Liu Shaoqi, now political commissar of the Academy of Military Sciences, and apparently the senior general outside the CMC), comes from the People's Armed Police, which technically doesn't belong to the People's Liberation Army at all, but IS subordinate to the Central Military Commission. It would be quite shocking if he were to get a seat on the CMC . . . of course, CMC Chairman Hu Jintao's "doctrine of harmonious society" defines the primary mission of the PLA as defending the leadership of the Communist Party.  

I believe the CCP Central Committee votes for the CMC leadership, no?  So we must await the 18th Congress to elect a CC, and the CC to elect the Politburo, CMC, etc?

Didn't the PLAAFPC and the Chengdu MR PC essentially trade places?  What's that about?  (Chengdu, Chongqing, Bo Xilai connection? or is that a stretch?)


For more information

For more information or to schedule a speaking engagement, please use our Contact form.

Mailing Address:
1307 Westgrove Blvd.
Alexandria, Virginia 22307

Phone Number: