Skip to comments.China’s young officers and the 1930s syndrome
Posted on 09/07/2010 8:12:18 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster
Chinas young officers and the 1930s syndrome
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard Economics Last updated: September 7th, 2010
Vietnam and the United States staged a demonstration of their military ties last month amid mounting tensions with China over the South China Sea.
I try to remain optimistic that the US and China will work out a more or less amicable way to run the world for the next half century, a Chimerica of interwoven superpowers.
But it was slightly disturbing to hear the warnings of a distinguished China-watcher at a closed-door session of the annual Ambrosetti conference on Lake Como.
(This gathering of the global policy elites at Villa DEste is a hardship assignment for Telegraph hacks. It fell to me again this year, but somebody has to do it.)
Chinas military spending is growing so fast that it has overtaken strategy, said Professor Huang Jing from the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy in Singapore. (He kindly let me quote his remarks.)
The young officers are taking control of strategy and it is like young officers in Japan in the 1930s. They are thinking what they can do, not what they should do. This is very dangerous.
They are on a collision course with a US-dominated system.
Harvard Professor Niall Ferguson rattled me even further with a talk warning that the Chimerica marriage of the last generation is on the rocks.
(Excerpt) Read more at blogs.telegraph.co.uk ...
When did the world agree that they wanted to be bullied by Communist China?
I think they wore out their welcome.
I trust the author does know that prior to 1940 Nazi Germany's #1 trading partner was France doesn't he?
y'spose they'll attack pearl harbor?
Last time they went into Viet Nam was the 1970s. Got their asses whipped, courteousy of all the equipment the NVA policed up after we left and they took the South.
Attack Taiwan and Okinawa, while trying to occupy N. Korea.
Admiral Yamamoto was the strategic planner for Pearl Harbor and he was no young officer.
It is the duty of the young to plan for the future. Planning for growth does not equate to planning world domination.
More importantly NVA were battle hardened
veterans used to hard lives, Chinese not
so much. They would have put an asswhup on
them even if all they had were bamboo staves.
Yamamoto was also sent out to sea for several months in 1939-1940 to remove him as a target for the young firebrands, especially in the Army, who were furious at him for advocating not going to war with the USA. When the path to war was decided he insisted upon the Pearl Harbor attack as the only way to get a temporary advantage over the US and maybe force us into a negotiated end. He had absolutely no hope of winning a long war, and by long he meant more than 6 months.
Any risk to Hawaii or Alaska?
Red China wants the Middle East Oil Fields ... the heck with Alaska ...
Here we are 18 years after the implementation of a plan that would gift China with a half century worth of technology, and an income stream with which to utilize it.
Now folks are beginning to see a problem with it.
I and others saw a problem with it 18 years ago.
I said then that our young men and women would die as a result of our short-sightedness.
In time they will. All the folks who got rich during the process will be just fine, where-ever they decide to relocate to avoid the mess.
Naval rivalry is passe. Cyberwarfare is the future. Riiiight!
Tell that to the Taiwanese, the Filipinos, the Singaporeans....
Yes. After he was ordered by the “boy emperor” and his “Spirit Warriors” who ran the Japanese military at the time of the attack.
They were all young, flushed with success after the their stunning success in the Russo-Japanese war and the murdering and raping 10s of millions in China and they bought the Japanese to the point of extinction.
Seriously, read the Book “Flyboys.”
It gives an extensive history of the contemporary Japanese officer corps at that time, the massive crimes that they perpetrated, and how they rose to power.
"In the early years of the 20th century Japan's first generation army underwent a shift to the 2nd generation, which had its own ideas about leadership.
These new military leaders were not former Samurai, but common men who had fought in the front lines in Asia.
These simple men were not strategists & valued mainly “glory.”
They forgot, or did not know, that Japan had not the strength to press home victory against Russia and did not appreciate the strategic wisdom with which their predecessors had sought Roosevelt's timely intervention.
These new military leaders believed that it was “Yamato damashii” (spirit - balls to you & me) that had provided the victories, and were convinced that this was Japan's “secret weapon” that would defeat America & her allies...”
Thank you for your post
imho the picture that northeast asian guys need to have of the pla
is that it is not a complementary bureaucracy with the
The CPC and the PLA are rather competitive bureaucracies.
Why? Why because the ultimate legitimacy and power of the CPC rests
on the PLA. Why? Because China is not a democracy.
What does this mean?
It means that China is very much like Japan after the Meji
restoration. Civilian and military bureacracies in Japan
were competitive and not complementary.
The Japanese military scored a lot of successes before they were defeated. They won the RussoJapanes war. they were on the winning side of the World War One. They took Korea.
And this was all before the 1930’s.
The successes of Japanese military bureaucracy in the 1930’s finally overcame the Japanese
The same will happen in China if the PLA is handed victories.
Therefor the most important thing that east asia can do is
prevent the PLA from gaining even minor successes.
The PLA should not be allowed to bring home the bacon. The consequences for asia would be grim in any case.
Any western diplomat can walk into Beijing today and rightly point out that its better to be the enemy of the PLA
than the friend of the PLA.
Just look at the two countries in asia that are wholly owned subsidiaries of the PLA. North Korea and Burma. They are basket cases.
Therefor all of east and south asia might be best served if they coordinate their policies and military strategies such that the PLA does not score any victories. But rather is a constant source of embarrassment to the Chinese.
Meanwhile, the orient should encourage the CPC to further
encourage voting and a multiparty system so that their legitimacy and power rests on the people— and not the military.
I was rather impressed by the chinese policy turn hillary enunciated out of Hanoi a couple weeks back. it showed that all the players in south asia were keeping their eye on the ball.
If he had sent in the third wave, he would have conquered Hawaii and had a toehold in the US. But I wonder, how long would he have held Hawaii without the Japanese military being exterminated? Or would they have launched a temporarily successful invasion of the mainland of the US?
I think the Chinese are not going to use their military except as a defense. Considering colonization and Nanjing, I don’t blame them. The only time they will likely mobilize will be when they are threatened with military confrontation from another country.
I think that China is now a country that has logic, instead of an artistic temperment running their nation. When they had artists who held the soldier in low esteem, they go colonized easily by the other powers. After the revolution, people with scientific (and none to compassionate) personalities run things. Soldiers are the top of the heap and with the US becoming run by artists, well, go figure we’re becoming low on the totem pole.
I think that China is now a country that has logic, instead of an artistic temperment running their nation. When they had artists who held the soldier in low esteem, they got colonized easily by the other powers. After the revolution, people with scientific (and none to compassionate) personalities run things. Soldiers are the top of the heap and with the US becoming run by artists, well, go figure we’re becoming low on the totem pole.
Communist China is building it’s economy, military, and industrial base to ensure full, efficient production. If we don’t do the same, along with Europe, then we are going to end up getting bullied and follwing the dictates of the Chinese for the next century, maybe even two centuries.
The sheer numbers make comparisons to Japan irrelevant. How many Japanese were there in the ‘30s, maybe 100M? How many Chinese today?
Not to mention the other resources Japan lacked, and China doesn’t lack.
Even if theyhad launched the third wave and blew up the oil tank farm and the drydocks, the Pearl Harbor task force was not geared up for an invasion, and it would have taken 6 months or better to mount one. Japan was stretched to the limit with operations already underway. In that 6 months re-inforcements would have arrived and tehy would not have been able to do it. It would have put a serious damper on US naval operations though, and they might have been able to take Midway.
Just my humble opinion.
I think that if they had gained a toehold, the Imperial Army would have for the first time faced a heavily armed civilian population. Something they had never faced. And then the reinforcements from the Mainland and of course, not understanding the terrain or language, would have caused substantial losses.
The other populations were not properly armed and China was torn apart by civil war at the time of the invasion and Nanking. The US was united and even the Japanese politburo understood the reality of their mistake. Although, simply taking Hawaii would have given them a foothold.
That explains all the secret nuclear sub pens and the rush to build a huge blue water navy. Yep nothing going on there, just trying to stay competitive in a growing economy.
Besides, based on China's recent frenzy to secure overseas source of necessary resources, China appears to have a different opinion. They sure lack oil. They dream for much bigger empire, which need a lot more resources to maintain.
In addition, China has not been tightly glued political entity. Disparate regions and ethnicity have always provide the strong potential for breakup. It is held together basically by brute force, with some added carrots. Maintaining the empire creates a huge overhead, without which various regions will go their own separate ways. The momentum of breakup usually starts with angry peasants. Heavy taxes, bad harvest, and corruption all provides fuel for large-scale rebellion, which ambitious people harness to advance their own ambition of becoming new hegemon. This could create long period of devastating civil war. If such a prospect become overwhelmingly likely, this would give another rationale for PLA to act on their ambition.
I think you are correct.
Even during the height of Mao communism, in port cities all over the world there were the “overseas Chinese” in well established and prosperous communities. They were doing business, sometimes better than the locals.
The chains and shackles have been relatively released and the tremendous entrepreneurial ability is becoming a force all across the world as the overseas unite with the home folks to engage the world from strong and well established business offices.
The competition will be intense, especially as the Indian subcontinent is awakening and becoming a force in world commerce.
The soviets captured eastern Europe purely as a buffer to prevent recurrence of invasion. The Russians should be watching their east. China will not necessarily invade, they will just migrate and absorb.
Our task is to continue innovating.
About 70m, compared to China's 600m. Japan's population is around 128m today, compared to China's 1.3b.