It was with some relish that I started reading a translationof
Unusually for a document about military affairs the papermentions not a single weapons system and is seriously short on the details theworld would like to see. More impressively perhaps, it manages to avoid using any ofthe acronyms that seem to be the mark of most military writing.
The first sectionacknowledges the world is more peaceful and stable these days, recognizes theinevitability of globalization and an increasingly informationalized society,and states that the outlook for mankind is generally bright.
Soon enough things take a darker turn: “In a number of countries,outbreaks of unrest are frequently triggered by political, economic, ethnic, orreligious disputes. In general, world peace remains elusive.” The issues thathave plagued man since time immemorial are apparently very much with us.
Then,later, a hint of paranoia (and a dig at the
Somuch for world peace. Later on,predictably, the paper emphasises
Asfor the PLAAF there is precious little. A long, 267-word paragraph on the PLAAFessentially says it is being transformed into a more modern, capable force thatcan perform a range of missions and can operate increasingly sophisticatedequipment.
Asfor the Chinese military’s new weapons and technologies, the report reservesjust one frugal line for the PLAAF: “The PLAAF has formed for its air controloperations a weaponry system with new types of combat aircraft andground-to-air missile systems as the spine.“
The white paper concludes with this:
Itwas comforting, at the end, to read that transparency is a priority. With luckthe next white paper will offer more details about
Less information is definitely not more when it comes to the development of