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New Report Says China Builds Military Because U.S. Does So

By | October 1, 2007

      China is expanding its military forces immensely because it wishes to counter a rapid military modernization in U.S. forces, according to a new 582-page report by the Army War College and the National Bureau of Asian Research.

      The report, with a dozen chapters by various authors, predicts that China will continue building up its forces against what it sees as U.S. military strengthening aimed at denying China its ascension to great-power status not only in the Asian region but beyond.

      China sees the United States shifting more of its forces, ranging from aircraft to submarines and aircraft carriers, into the Western Pacific, as a means of containing Chinese ambitions, according to the report.

      Because China sees its rise to great-power status as rightful, it is acquiring military forces capable of projecting power far beyond Taiwan, according to the report.

      "Even though the possibility of war over Taiwan has receded, China’s perception of a U.S. threat is not likely to recede significantly as well," the report predicts.

      China has threatened to invade Taiwan and take it by force unless it submits voluntarily to rule by Beijing, but the United States in that event has said it would defend Taiwan, counseling China to pursue peaceful "reunification" instead.

      The report is entitled "Right-Sizing the People’s Liberation Army: Exploring the Contours of China’s Military" and was discussed in a panel forum at The Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank.

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