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[infowar.de] China Investing in Information Warfare Technology, Doctrine
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- Date: Sat, 30 Jul 2005 13:36:16 +0200
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China Investing in Information Warfare Technology, Doctrine
By Kathleen T. Rhem
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, July 20, 2005 – China appears to be taking a page from U.S.
doctrine and working to improve its information warfare capabilities,
according to a comprehensive DoD report on Chinese military power released
In 2004, China introduced a new term in the country's military doctrine:
"local wars under conditions of informationalization."
In DoD's 2005 report to Congress on China's military power, defense
officials explain this term refers to the People's Liberation Army's
"emphasis on information technology as a force multiplier."
A senior defense official, speaking on background, said the Chinese watch
advances in U.S. doctrine carefully. "Every time we're involved in a
campaign, there's a spate of articles (in China) analyzing it," the
official said. "Sometimes they put themselves in the shoes of our
opponent; sometimes they try to see, 'What can we emulate that the
Americans have done?'"
The official said the Chinese military has a long way to go in C4ISR --
command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance,
and reconnaissance -- but they're clearly doing research and development
into such capabilities.
China is also using advances in C4ISR to project military power farther
from its own borders. Over the long term, the report states, China's
advances in these areas "could enable Beijing to identify, target, and
track foreign military activities deep into the western Pacific and
provide, potentially, hemispheric coverage."
China introduced the term "local wars under conditions of
informationalization" in its December 2004 Defense White Paper to describe
the type of war the PLA must be prepared to fight and win.
U.S. defense officials are still working to understand the implications of
the new concept. But the July 19 DoD report on China power states the term
appears to sum up "China's experiences and assessments of the implications
of the revolution in military affairs -- primarily the impact of
information technology and knowledge-based warfare on the battlefield."
Through studying U.S. and other allied operations in the past decade, the
PLA is beginning to understand the importance of joint development in
C4ISR capabilities. The report states that such ambitions can be traced to
lessons learned from U.S. and allied operations since the Persian Gulf
War. Still, China is working to overcome an overall lack of joint
operations and operational experience in general.
China's 2004 White Paper shows that Chinese officials understand they're
on the short end of an expanding technology gap, according to the U.S.
defense report. China's leaders, including President Hu Jintao, have
ordered the PLA to pursue "leap ahead" technologies and
"informationalized" capabilities to increase weapons' mobility, firepower
and precision, the U.S. report states.
The report quotes from a May 2003 article by PLA Deputy Chief of the
General Staff Xiong Guangkai, stating that the PLA should push forward
"military reform with Chinese characteristics."
"We should study and draw on the experiences and lessons of various
countries in making military changes, including all the local wars fought
under high-tech conditions," Xiong reportedly wrote, "but we should not
mechanically copy other countries' patterns of military changes."
2005 China Military Power Report
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