China’s major problem, he said, is “internal stability,” something most communist regimes have not had much trouble handling, whether through secret police or as in China’s case, the bloody 1989 crackdown by military forces on unarmed protesters in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.
As for China’s rapid military buildup of long-range missiles, submarines and space weapons, “I would characterize it, for the most part, while it has offensive capabilities, for the most part right now, it is defensive, and their principle focus is on Taiwan, bringing Taiwan into China, and the ability to have access to natural resources.”
China is building deep-sea naval forces that appear designed to acquire energy resources, he said.
• Bill Gertz covers the Pentagon. He can be reached at 202/636-3274 or at email@example.com.
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