Overview of the Chinese Army 2017
The Chinese military, officially known as the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), is the largest in the world with an estimated 2.3 million active-duty personnel. In 2017 the PLA was made up of both land forces and air and naval forces. The ground forces are divided into 18 army corps, while the Air Force was divided into seven air divisions and the Navy into three fleets: North Sea, East Sea, and South Sea.
The next largest military force in the world is the United States, with 1.4 million active-duty personnel. Despite having almost half the personnel of the PLA, the US military is the most advanced with its sophisticated arsenal. The US military is comprised of five military services and 18 unified commands.
Personnel and Equipment of the PLA
The PLA has a large number of personnel divided into various branches, and its equipment is also among the best in the world. The PLA consists of general operational forces, strategic forces, reserve forces, and various arms, including ground forces, navy, air force, and rocket forces.
The ground forces are divided into 18 divisions and the navy is divided into three fleets: North Sea, East Sea, and South Sea. The air force is divided into seven divisions and the rocket forces are divided into four. The PLA’s total number of weapons systems is estimated to be in the thousands, which includes tanks, armored personnel carriers, howitzers, helicopters, and fighter jets.
The PLA also has a number of nuclear weapons and is currently modernizing its arsenal to compete with the US and Russia. The PLA has deployed a number of missile systems along its coastlines, which are capable of hitting targets in the US and its territories.
Chinese Military Expenditures
The Chinese military has vast resources at its disposal, thanks to the country’s economic growth. In 2017, the Chinese defense budget was estimated to be around $183 billion, making it the second largest military in the world in terms of spending. The US is the largest spender with a defense budget of $614 billion in 2017.
China’s military spending has been steadily increasing since the mid-1980s, when the country started to reform its military. According to experts, the Chinese government views its military as an important component of its economic, political and social plans. The country has also been engaging in a number of initiatives to increase its global influence and has increased its involvement in international affairs.
Military Strategy and Operations of the PLA
The Chinese military’s main focus is on defense and deterrence, rather than offense. The Chinese government’s main focus has been to modernize its military and increase its capacity for regional and global power projection. As part of its strategy, the PLA has conducted several large-scale military exercises, such as the “Stride 2010” exercise, which was conducted in 2009 and included a unilateral nuclear strike against the United States.
The Chinese military has also been active in regional conflicts, most notably in the South China Sea. In 2017, the PLA sent a fleet of ships to the South China Sea to conduct a week-long exercise that included anti-submarine drills and live-fire exercises. The Chinese government has also recently conducted a number of high-profile joint military exercises with Russia.
International Military Cooperation and Relations
The Chinese military has been actively involved in international military cooperation and maintaining friendly relations with other countries. The PLA has participated in numerous peacekeeping missions and joint exercises with foreign militaries. The PLA also maintains close relations with Russia, which has been an important partner in developing the Chinese military.
In recent years, the PLA has become increasingly involved in international peacekeeping operations. In 2017, the PLA deployed a task force to assist the African Union in a conflict in South Sudan. The Chinese military has also conducted joint exercises with the militaries of the United States, India, France, and many other countries.
Influence of Chinese Military Abroad
The Chinese military has gained significant influence abroad in recent years, as China seeks to further its global ambitions. The PLA has been working closely with the militaries of countries such as Pakistan, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Thailand. The Chinese government has also been expanding its military presence in the South China Sea, which has caused alarm in the region.
The PLA has been providing the militaries of other countries with training and assistance. Most recently, the PLA sent a team of trainers to Myanmar to take part in a joint counter-terrorism exercise. In addition, the PLA has also conducted joint exercises and held joint military exercises with the militaries of Russia, the United States, India, and other countries.
US-China Military Tensions
The Chinese military has caused tensions with the United States and its allies due to its growing presence in the South China Sea. The United States has been critical of the Chinese military’s presence in the region, and has called for a more restrained approach from the Chinese government. In addition, the US has accused the Chinese military of engaging in cyber warfare, which has further strained relations between the two countries.
The United States has also increased its presence in the region in response to China. The US Navy has sent several ships to the South China Sea, and has conducted freedom of navigation operations in an effort to challenge Chinese sovereignty claims in the area.
Domestic and Regional Perspectives of the PLA
The Chinese government has been largely successful in maintaining its military strategy of defensive deterrence and regional domination. The PLA has been largely successful in deterring potential adversaries and has not become involved in military conflicts since the brief Sino-Vietnamese War in 1979. The Chinese military has also been successful in responding to regional issues, most notably in the South China Sea.
Most Chinese citizens view the PLA favorably, and believe the country needs the military to defend its borders, deter potential aggression, and maintain regional stability. The Chinese people also view their government’s military spending as a sign of their country’s rising power and assertiveness. In addition, the Chinese people have a strong sense of patriotism, which is bolstered by the idea of a proud and powerful military.
Regional Role of the PLA in the Future
As China seeks to strengthen its global influence, the PLA is likely to continue to play an important role. The Chinese military has become more involved in regional conflicts and in responding to regional issues, and is likely to become even more active in the future. The Chinese government views the PLA as an important tool for maintaining regional stability and ensuring China’s interests.
The Chinese military is also likely to play an increasingly important role in international peacekeeping operations and in the global fight against terrorism. The Chinese government has stated its intention to strengthen its military presence abroad and to increase its involvement in international military operations. The Chinese military is likely to become even more active in the future, and will continue to be an important factor in international and regional affairs.