On Tuesday November 18, COL Larry M. Wortzel, Ph.D. (USA, Ret.) gave a presentation on Chinese Contemporary Military Strategy. This event was primarily for the students of the late General Jajko’s Military Strategy class, but was opened up to public attendance as well.
Colonel Wortzel discussed a variety of aspects which shape Chinese military strategy, starting with historical and cultural elements, such as the history of rebellions throughout China, the “century of humiliation,” as well as the Chinese revolutionary war. Also discussed was the evolution of Chinese military doctrine from when Mao was in charge to modern day policies, and how Mao’s legacy of guerilla tactics during the revolution has been incorporated into modern operating procedure. He also elaborated about the Chinese military viewpoint on the storage and usage of conventional and strategic missiles, as well as the Chinese viewpoint on how shows of force should be used.
Also of note was the structure of the Chinese Communist Party its relationship to the People’s Liberation Army, how the PLA swears allegiance to the CCP, and how part of its mandate is to protect and forward the aims of the Party as well as other objectives such as national security and defending China’s sovereignty.
Dr. Wortzel is one of the foremost U.S. experts on China and serves on the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. During a 32-year military career, Dr. Wortzel spent 12 years in the Asia-Pacific region, including two tours of duty as a military attaché at in China. Following his retirement from the Army as a colonel in 1999, he was an executive with The Heritage Foundation. At Heritage he was Asian Studies Center Director and Vice President for foreign policy and defense studies. Dr. Wortzel has written or edited numerous books and articles on China.