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  • Jul 24, 2014
  • Updated: 10:18pm
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POLITICS

Seventeen more generals add to pledges of allegiance to Xi Jinping

PLA Daily publishes two pages of speeches vowing allegiance to commander-in-chief as he moves to shore up crucial loyalty of the army

PUBLISHED : Friday, 18 April, 2014, 11:48pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 19 April, 2014, 3:41am
 

The PLA Daily yesterday published two full pages of speeches by 17 generals vowing allegiance to their commander-in-chief, President Xi Jinping, the third such campaign by the official military newspaper in the past six weeks.

Analysts said the campaign indicated that Xi was facing severe challenges at home and internationally and that shoring up the loyalty of the army was a must for him.

"China is facing great pressure from outside, especially simmering tensions in the East China Sea with Japan over the Diaoyu islands, so the PLA should be ready for a possible conflict with Japan's self-defence force," Ni Lexiong, a military expert, said in Shanghai. "Corruption is fatal to an army. However, it's an open secret that corruption is rampant in the PLA, with disgraced former deputy logistics chief Gu Junshan being a typical example."

Gu, a former lieutenant general, was charged late last month with embezzlement, bribery, misuse of state funds and abuse of power by the military procuratorate, or prosecutor's office. It is rumoured that he spent hundreds of millions of yuan buying his way through the ranks.

"Xi realises that it's impossible to bring down all corrupt officers involved in buying and selling military ranks, as he still needs military leaders to train grass-roots soldiers," Ni said.

"In order to maintain the army's morale, he would prefer to keep a gate open to tainted officers who were willing to pledge allegiance to him."

The excerpts from speeches published yesterday were from 17 vice political commissars and deputy commanders - all holding the rank of major general or above. Thirty-six more senior officers made similar pledges on March 7 and April 2.

All the generals vowed to study hard and implement Xi's ideas on defence and military strategy. They came up with the statements after taking part in three courses, lasting six days each, on Xi's military philosophy at the National Defence University. The final course, from April 8 to 13, dealt with Xi's "China dream" concept and how to build an army that was capable of defending the country and leading it to victory.

The special pages ... will help Xi raise morale of mid-ranking officers
Military commentator Zhang Lifan

Zhang Lifan, a military commentator in Beijing, said it was the first time that so many senior officers had declared their allegiance to a chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), the military's top brass, since the mainland's opening up in the late 1970s.

"I think Xi is facing dogged defiance from the top echelons in both the army and government amid his sweeping anti-corruption campaign, which has forced him to manage so many study meetings for high-level military and government officials to learn his philosophy," Zhang said.

"The special pages published by the PLA will not influence top-level officers, but will help Xi raise morale of mid-ranking officers and common soldiers."

Last month the CMC ordered all military units to hang important inscriptions and instructions, given to the military by the five top leaders from Mao Zedong to Xi, in their meeting rooms.

Zhang said that particular order was part of Xi's propaganda campaign and was in keeping with the pages of speeches run by the PLA Daily.

"Xi will maintain these types of propaganda exercises to show he is as determined as Mao or Deng Xiaoping to keep a strong hold over the military."

During previous courses, top generals pledged their allegiance to Xi. They included General Liu Yuan, a political commissar who heads the army's anti-corruption unit.

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This article is now closed to comments

sjfore
Most (and only) authoritarian governments go through this weirdly public ritual of shoring up support with the military. They do so because they have no mandate to rule, and their power is built on sand. In a crisis, they always need to be able to call in the tanks to pacify/kill their own citizens.
This is not to deny or excuse the way some democratic governments kowtow to the "defense" establishment (I'm looking at you, USA).
J R
Mr Xi is moving in the right direction to clean up the corruption and lack of professionalism in the Chinese government. History show that a country not willing to clean out the detritus will never improve. As Deng Xiaoping says, reform and opening up will not only let in the fresh air but also let in the flies. Now Mr Xi is using his fly swap to put China into a more solid foundation. Given his early successes it is no wonder that the generals of the PLA are supporting his efforts to deepen reforms and strengthen China. Contrasts that with the unreformable Japanese whose only resort to the barbaric sickness they have is to pray to war criminals at the Yasukuni War Shrine. Contrasts that with the USA that after 911 have to spend trillions of USD fighting wars of aggression violating international law and making themselves into war criminals. The Japanese praying to war criminals at the Yasukuni War Shrine only ensures for the Japanese condemnation and divine retribution like the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster. The American violence and misinformation at the cost of trillions to the long suffering US taxpayer only resulted in the enemies of the US getting stronger after they high tail from Afghanistan end 2014. So China in contrasts to the war mongering Japanese and US needs to unite and clean up their system. The US seeing that China is not falling for it's provocations pivots to Asia militarily while Putin creates a new and fairer reality in Europe. US and Japan are doomed.
Jonathan Smith
JR
Your comments are absolutely right. The US supports a Japan that can't confront it's barbaric past and hence have no future. The US itself don't play by the very rules it established after the defeat of Japan. 30 years of Chinese reforms is a very big success as the World Bank report states that it lifted 600 million people out of poverty. The US pivot to Asia was to have started in 2000 with George Bush Jr. but 911 showed the US that US policies in the Middle East have deadly consequences. This distracted the US for a decade but did not stop the US from doing it's utmost to contain China. A stable fast growing China in the eyes of the US revisionists is totally unpalatable as it puts the Washington Model versus the Beijing Model at a disadvantage and more and more peoples in the developing countries are abandoning the US Model while not totally adopting the Beijing Model. While the China Model is not perfect it has come to the stage where deeper reforms are required and the corruption that have festered needs to be expunged. Xi Jinping is doing just that. China have the courage to do that and that is very laudable. In Japan instead of reform, radicals like Shinzo Abe are harking to the past of Japanese militarism. In the US, the political stalemate have resulted in a US more at odds with itself and the rest of the world. Nobody wants the US Model of invading and destroying other countries under the guise of WMD in Iraq or War on Muslims in Afghanistan.
ejmciii
I pledge allegiance to the XI, because I know he will protect me, from any kind of inquiry as long as I share my corruption with Xi. How lucky it is to be me, saved from ignominy, by sucking up to one as Xi, who now is my god and king. All hail Caeser, all hail Caeser. One thing about these communists, they make for good copy.
michaelhctam@gmail.com
You have absolutely no idea what you're talking about, do you?
chaz_hen
I think he summed up the the China Dream quite succinctly.
caractacus
So Chinese 'patriotism' has now come down to swearing loyalty to an individual / political party instead of to the State or its constitution.
The last major example of this was in 1933 in N A Z I Germany when all officials and the military were made to swear a personally oath of loyalty to the filthy Fu h r er whose governing apparatus was sheer gangsterism.
When a person or a party supplants the nation as the focus of loyalty, watch out.
J R
People pledges support and allegiance to Xi because he is a reformer with a heavy tasks. No wants to pledge any support or allegiance to Snake Obama or Psycho Abe for the simple reasons that they are perfidious and insidious.
Masako Owada
caractacus
WTF do you know except to spew venom. Hopefully God will destroy your WMF country.
ejmciii
I guess he hit a nerve again, right minion. He is correct. It is back to the days of the emperor. Run along and read only the people's daily. This journalism that does not pay homage to the new emperor is not harmonious. And what is with the fake Japanese name. Do you wish you were Japanese?

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