China News

Xi Jinping Promotes Two More Generals After Wagner Mutiny

The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) top leader Xi Jinping promoted two generals in Beijing on June 28, four days after the Wagner mutiny.

The two new generals are Zheng Xuan, political commissar of the Northern Theater Command of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), and Ling Huanxin, political commissar of the Academy of Military Sciences, according to CCP’s mouthpiece Xinhua News.

General is the highest rank for serving officers in China. The CCP’s top leaders use the rank as a carrot to obtain loyalty from their subordinates and purging as a stick-warning to their political rivals.

Xi has been promoting his own generals and purging generals promoted by Jiang and Hu in the name of anti-graft.

Public information shows that Xi has promoted 71 generals since he stepped into the paramount position of the CCP. In comparison, his predecessors Jiang Zemin promoted 79 generals and Hu Jintao promoted 45 generals.

The Wagner revolt against Russia’s military leadership ended as abruptly as it began, and it may have as profound an impact on China as on Russia, making Xi uneasy about the reliability of China’s military officers, analysts say.

Wagner Mutiny Makes Xi Worried About China’s PLA Officers: Analysts

Unlike leaders in democratic countries who are elected by the electorate, CCP’s top leaders are selected by previous top leaders as a result of internal fighting and balancing of interests among various political factions within the CCP.

“As a regime that believes in ‘power comes from the barrel of a gun,’ the instability of the military has undoubtedly become a worry for Xi Jinping, especially in the context of the regime’s current internal and external difficulties,” said Li Yanming, a U.S.-based expert on China issues, in an interview with The Epoch Times on June 24.

Li added that there are signs that the Communist Party’s military may be undergoing a new round of purges.

Purged PLA general and Politburo member Xu Caihou’s rise to power was pushed along by former president Jiang Zemin, says Chinese media Caixin. In this photo disgraced Politburo member Bo Xilai (L) talks to Xu Caihou at the National People's Congress on March 5, 2012. A little over a month later, Bo Xilai was purged; on July 2, 2014, Xu was also expelled fro the Chinese Communist Party. (Liu Jin/AFP/Getty Images)
In this photo, disgraced Politburo member Bo Xilai (L) talks to Xu Caihou at the national congress on March 5, 2012. (Liu Jin/AFP/Getty Images)

From June 2 to June 8 this year, the Chinese Communist Party’s military newspaper published multiple commentary articles, repeatedly mentioning Guo Boxiong, Xu Caihou, Fang Fenghui, Zhang Yang, and other fallen military tigers, saying that their “poisonous influence” should be completely and thoroughly eliminated.

At the same time, the CCP issued new rules for serving and retired military officers, regulating their “social communications” and stipulating them how to deal with social contacts such as government, military, and business circles, friends, and families.

Ni Lexiong, a Chinese military expert and a professor of political science at the Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, told Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post that the CCP’s issuance of social guidelines for military cadres was “unprecedented,” which was “not done even in Mao Zedong’s times.”

A columnist with the alias of Jiang Feng for the Chinese edition of the Voice of America wrote on June 27 that the Wagner mutiny reminds the current CCP leadership that everyone can be an “unrevealed two-faced person or potential traitor,” and “the only subversive threat can only come from within the core of power,” wrote Jiang.

The near-record number of promotions of PLA’s generals, though “viewed as a way to gain the loyalty of rising stars in the military,” is an “indication of insecurity [of the Chinese regime],” reported Chanakya Forum, an India-based magazine on global geopolitics.

Akio Yaita, director of the Taipei office of Japanese media Sankei Shimbun, who was stationed in Beijing for 10 years, also noticed Xi’s worries about his military cadres.

“For Xi Jinping, the cost of attacking Taiwan has gone up again. In the future, when he opens the roster of PLA generals, he may be surprised to find that everyone looks a little like Prigozhin,” Yaita wrote in his Facebook account on June 25.

Ning Haizhong contributed to this report.

Source link

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.