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Deciphering the PLA’s New Joint Doctrine: A Conversation with Dr. David Finkelstein

In this episode of the ChinaPower Podcast, Dr. David Finkelstein joins us to discuss the PLA’s new joint doctrine and how it will impact China’s military modernization. Dr. Finkelstein describes his research process behind his new report and predicts the major new components of the doctrine. He argues that the concept of an integrated joint force represents a major doctrinal development within the PLA and is a response to a paradigm shift in how warfighting is conducted in an information-centric era. Lastly, Dr. Finkelstein analyzes the possible internal and external challenges the PLA will face when implementing the new doctrine, and how this timeline aligns with China’s military modernization goals for 2027, 2035, and 2049.

The Impact of Covid-19 on China’s Military: A Conversation with M. Taylor Fravel

In this episode of the ChinaPower Podcast, Dr. M. Taylor Fravel joins us to discuss whether China has become more militarily assertive toward its neighbors during the pandemic. Dr. Fravel points out that, despite Covid-19, Chinese defense spending increased and PLA modernization continued unabated. Similarly, he argues that the level of Chinese assertiveness seen prior to the pandemic has continued during the pandemic. He adds that the PLA’s ability to dispatch medical teams within China during the pandemic while maintaining its pace of operations in regional disputes shows that China is reaping the success of two decades of PLA modernization. Lastly, Dr. Fravel describes the benefits of increasing US collaboration with countries on the front lines of Chinese disputes.

The Best of ChinaPower: Xi Jinping’s Military-Civil Fusion Project: A Conversation with Greg Levesque

This special “best of ChinaPower” episode explores China’s efforts to integrate its military and civilian sectors to support its military development and broader national security agenda. Our guest, Mr. Greg Levesque, discusses how Military-Civil Fusion (MCF) fits into China’s grand strategy and evaluates how effectively it has implemented the program to date. Levesque also weighs the risks and rewards of MCF in Beijing’s strategic calculus and offers a path for how the US and its allies can respond to the growing nexus between military and civil development in China.

The Best of ChinaPower: Highlights of the 2020 DoD Report on Chinese Military Power: A Conversation with Chad Sbragia

This special “best of ChinaPower” episode examines the trajectory of Chinese military developments and national strategy, as well as key findings of the 2020 Department of Defense (DoD) annual report to Congress entitled Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China. Our guest, Mr. Chad Sbragia, then-Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for China, discusses a wide range of topics, including China’s capacity to launch an amphibious assault on Taiwan, China’s nuclear strategy, and the Belt and Road Initiative. Mr. Sbragia also highlights the growing alignment between the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and China’s broader national strategy, and he explores the implication of PLA modernization for stability and crisis prevention in the coming years.

The Best of ChinaPower: The Implications of China’s Conventional Missile Arsenal: A Conversation with Ankit Panda

In this special “best of ChinaPower” episode, Mr. Ankit Panda joins us to discuss China’s growing conventional missile arsenal and associated implications for military strategy and security in the Indo-Pacific region. He highlights the role of China’s ground-based missiles in the projection of military power, noting that an increased arsenal can hamper U.S. forces in the region and give the People’s Liberation Army increased maneuverability. Mr. Panda talks about the consequences of the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty and the political obstacles to an increased U.S. arsenal around China’s periphery. In addition, he explains the strategic implications of China’s dual-capable missile force, and specifically the DF-26 missile’s ability to rapidly convert between nuclear and conventional warheads. Finally, Mr. Panda analyzes the role of hypersonic glide vehicles, noting that while the underlying technology is not new, advances in materials science have allowed more countries to develop HGV systems.

The Implications of China’s Conventional Missile Arsenal: A Conversation with Ankit Panda

In this episode, Mr. Ankit Panda joins us to discuss China’s growing conventional missile arsenal and associated implications for military strategy and security in the Indo-Pacific region. He highlights the role of China’s ground-based missiles in the projection of military power, noting that an increased arsenal can hamper U.S. forces in the region and give the People’s Liberation Army increased maneuverability. Mr. Panda talks about the consequences of the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty and the political obstacles to an increased U.S. arsenal around China’s periphery. In addition, he explains the strategic implications of China’s dual-capable missile force, and specifically the DF-26 missile’s ability to rapidly convert between nuclear and conventional warheads. Finally, Mr. Panda analyzes the role of hypersonic glide vehicles, noting that while the underlying technology is not new, advances in materials science have allowed more countries to develop HGV systems.

China’s Nuclear Strategy and Capabilities: A Conversation with Hans Kristensen

In this episode, Dr. Hans Kristensen joins us to discuss China’s nuclear policy, nuclear weapons capabilities, and nuclear doctrine. Dr. Kristensen assesses the significance of Beijing’s no-first-use policy and compares China’s nuclear arsenal with those of other major powers. He also explains potential factors that may lead China to increase its nuclear arsenal and alter its current nuclear strategy in the future.