Sun. May 26th, 2024

China ramps up military training on scale not seen since 1970s

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell May23,2024

China is set to enact a new law that will mandate military drills for middle school students, marking a significant shift towards a militarised society unseen since Mao Zedong’s era in the 1970s.

The revised “law on national defence education” proposes compulsory military exercises for students aged 12 to 15, with a call to introduce defence studies even at the primary school level.

While cloaked in the rhetoric of advancing national defence education, the law underscores a broader push towards militarisation. Despite previous sporadic enforcement of military-style exercises in schools, the new law signals a more systematic approach.

Schools across China are already integrating national defence education into their curriculum.

A middle school in Wenzhou, as cited by the CCP’s Global Times, incorporates military training, competitions, and visits to historical sites into its programme.

This move may stem in part from recruitment challenges faced by the People’s Liberation Army, with many students opting for careers in the private sector.

It coincides with President Xi Jinping‘s recent military reorganisation, prioritising information and cyber warfare.

Beyond schools, Chinese companies are forming their own volunteer armies reminiscent of the 1970s. Major firms, including a privately-owned dairy company, have established militias, termed People’s Armed Forces Departments.

These militias, encouraged by officials, are equipped with uniforms and training facilities, aiming to contribute to national defence efforts.

Meanwhile, China’s new counter-espionage law, enacted last year, broadens the definition of national security threats. It empowers authorities to access data and electronic equipment, alarming foreign businesses and raising concerns about privacy and freedom of expression.

The Ministry of State Security has also ramped up efforts to combat espionage, urging citizens to report suspicious behaviour and expanding the definition of illegal activities to include criticism of the economy.

Xi Jinping‘s increasingly warlike rhetoric against the West and emphasis on internal security reflect his pervasive paranoia, reminiscent of Mao’s era.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “China ramps up military training on scale not seen since 1970s”
  1. Is the shift towards militarisation in Chinese schools raising concerns among parents and educators?

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