This Is China’s Master Plan to Destroy America, Japan and Taiwan in Battle
On most days, China’s high-speed rail network is for hauling millions — yes, millions — of commuters, vacationers and tourists around the country.
But on May 14, 2015, one section of the growing network served a very different purpose. A People’s Liberation Army brigade from the Lanzhou military regionboarded a high-speed train and set off for Xinjiang — 300 miles to the west.
The exercise was a rapid and clever way to move troops around the huge country, something which Beijing is struggling to handle. China has the largest ground army and the longest land border in the world, which abuts 14 nations … more than any other country except Russia.
One of these countries — India — is one of Beijing’s rivals and the two countries have two ongoing border disputes. Myanmar to the south — and Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan to the west — are potentially unstable. Then there’s the border with North Korea.
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It all adds up to lots of potential crises along the border. The result is that Beijing wants its army to have the ability to respond to lots of varied and potential crises. Hence high-speed trains.
China’s army is starting to move fast.
The Lanzhou brigade’s trip — which included its equipment — was the first time a military unit had ever traveled along the high-speed rail line to Xinjiang. The western province is home to an insurgency fought between the state and ethnic Uyghur Muslim militants.
The state-owned Chinese military newspaper Jiefangjun Bao anesthetically described the exercise as part of “the military’s power projection and combat readiness force movement on to the ‘contemporary train’ of civil-military integration.”
This is an oblique reference to China using civilian infrastructure for military purposes. China has the largest high-speed rail network in the world — defined as rail lines with trains traveling above 120 miles per hour.
China has six high-speed lines — and the one to Xianjiang is the newest, having opened in 2014. But Beijing will more than double its high-speed lines in the 2020s.
The trend toward increasing dual-use by the military is also on the rise.
“A lightly equipped division could be moved on the Wuhan-to-Guangzhou line — about 600 miles — in five hours, a fairly rapid mobilization in military terms,” the state-owned China Youth Daily reported in 2014.
U.S. Army researchers have taken an interest in this. “Earlier, troops traveled on highways during maneuver drills,” O.E. Watch, the Army’s Foreign Military Studies Office newsletter, noted last June. “This new mode of transportation is an improvement. With troops now able to step out of their barracks and onto the high speed train, troop movement will be significantly faster.”
One of reasons China wants its military
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