What war is China preparing for?

The President of China spoke about preparing for war. He touched on this topic in his last four speeches. In particular, at the annual meeting of the PRC Parliament and the highest political advisory body.

In general, these statements speak of preparations for a global confrontation between China and the United States. Indeed, relations between the two countries are quite tense. The emergence of a direct conflict over Taiwan at the moment is the most likely scenario. Although it is not only about Taiwan. It should be noted that the South China Sea, where the PRC is conducting a wide expansion.

Earlier, information was circulated that the Chinese leader allegedly ordered his army to prepare for an attack on Taiwan by 2027.

And it is worth talking not only about the conventional war, but also about the confrontation in the technological and economic spheres. Xi Jinping has been saying since 2015 that China should prepare for the fight. That is, the theses about preparing for future conflicts were voiced by Beijing before.

Today, China is trying to expand both economically and territorially. It is clear that there will be an answer to this extension. China now has many conflict points. This is not only the United States, but also India, Vietnam and even Japan. Therefore, we are talking about the country’s overall readiness to fight on all fronts. Therefore, in my opinion, similar statements will be heard from the PRC in the future.

Earlier, information was spread that the Chinese leader allegedly ordered his army to prepare for an attack on Taiwan by 2027. And after the last congress of the Communist Party of China, everything goes to the fact that Beijing is changing the vector to more and more aggressive behavior in the foreign arena.

All this fits into the ideological agenda of Xi Jinping – about the revival of China. But the only way to reunite with Taiwan is through direct invasion.

If China decides on a military escalation in Taiwan, Russia may “intervene”

It was the Russian-Ukrainian war that showed Beijing that it is possible to fight using conventional methods, even with a nuclear power. That is, in the PRC they assume that you can collide with the Americans. And not the fact that this will lead to a nuclear apocalypse.

American experts in Washington are also well aware that a traditional war is quite possible. Therefore, both China and the United States are actively preparing for this. Whether this conflict is irreversible is difficult to say at this stage. But a Chinese invasion of Taiwan is becoming more and more likely every year.

US General Mark Milley stressed recently that China’s national goal is to overtake and surpass the United States militarily. At the same time, according to Milley, China will create problems for world security for many years – together with Russia and Iran. Indeed, if China decides on a military escalation in Taiwan, Russia may “intervene”, and then the Russian-Chinese military association will be formed de facto. Most likely, Iran can also join them.

However, in my opinion, the Chinese consider military alliance with such countries only in a crisis situation. At the moment, one should still remember the tradition of Chinese foreign policy – pragmatism and rejection of such alliances that oblige to something.

Whether we see any escalation any time soon may well depend on the US. For example, now the President of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen, has flown to the United States. If she meets with US officials, then China will be forced to respond. Relations between the US and China will worsen again.

We can talk about both a soft economic blockade and other, tougher signals. In particular, I mean the high probability of military exercises or military maneuvers around the island (what China did last year during Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan).

But, in addition, China can respond to the United States with increased support for Russia. Perhaps even militarily. And although such military support will still be minimal, it will allow Beijing to continue to use Russia to blackmail the United States on the Taiwan issue.

Anton Ganotsky, expert on the Asia-Pacific region of the analytical center Adastra

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