Archive for January 23rd, 2009

Friday, January 23, 2009

Beijing: No first Use of Nuclear Weapons

About China’s Second Artillery Force (SAF)

The Second Artillery Force is a strategic force under the direct command and control of the CMC, and the core force of China for strategic deterrence. It is mainly responsible for deterring other countries from using nuclear weapons against China, and for conducting nuclear counterattacks and precision strikes with conventional missiles.

The Second Artillery Force sticks to China’s policy of no first use of nuclear weapons, implements a self-defensive nuclear strategy, strictly follows the orders of the CMC, and takes it as its fundamental mission the protection of China from any nuclear attack. In peacetime the nuclear missile weapons of the Second Artillery Force are not aimed at any country. But if China comes under a nuclear threat, the nuclear missile force of the Second Artillery Force will go into a state of alert, and get ready for a nuclear counterattack to deter the enemy from using nuclear weapons against China. If China comes under a nuclear attack, the nuclear missile force of the Second Artillery Force will use nuclear missiles to launch a resolute counterattack against the enemy either independently or together with the nuclear forces of other services. The conventional missile force of the Second Artillery Force is charged mainly with the task of conducting medium- and long-range precision strikes against key strategic and operational targets of the enemy.

China Daily, Jan. 20, 2009

The white paper did not specifically mention the nuclear deal between India and the US. But it said that the US was trying to further consolidate its military alliances and enhancing its military capabilities in the Asia Pacific region.

The country’s nuclear arm, the Second Artillery Force, will use nuclear missiles to “launch a resolute counterattack against the enemy” in case of a nuclear attack, it said. This is the first time that China has publicly discussed the role and strategies of the SAF.

Times of India, Jan. 20, 2009

Of the nuclear powers, only the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of India have declarative, unqualified, unconditional no-first-use policies. In 1982, at a special session of General Assembly of United Nations, the USSR pledged not to use nuclear weapons first, regardless of whether its opponents possessed nuclear weapons or not. This pledge was later abandoned by post-Soviet Russia. The United States has a partial, qualified no-first-use policy, stating that they will not use nuclear weapons against states without nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction.

Wikipedia (no citation), viewed Jan. 20, 2009

Related: State and Party CMCs (Central Military Commissions)

Friday, January 23, 2009

JR’s tag-mongering Potpourri

China’s State Council passed a plan for universal health care on Wednesday. Much of China’s high savings rate is believed to be caused by worries about medical expenses, and the prospect of universal health care may therefore be helpful for pushing domestic demand. It may come rather late as an economic helper. The plan will probably take three years to be implemented, according to Xinhua / International Herald Tribune.

Premier Wen Jiabao will visit Europe from January 27 to February 2. The trip will include Germany, Spain, Britain, the EU headquarters in Brussels, and attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Britain’s Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Bill Rammell defended his government’s redefinition of China’s rule over Tibet from suzerainty to sovereignty. Just as in a statement to the House of Commons on December 16 last year, he suggested that this could help his government to speak more directly to China about the region’s future.

[Correction/Insertion: While ] the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has dedicated a complete website to its approach to Working with China, foreign secretary Miliband hurt the feelings of Indian interlocutors by apparently linking the Mumbai attacks to the Kashmir conflict. A spokeswoman for Mr Miliband said that the foreign secretary had been very open and honest about his views.

Meantime, French president Sarkozy continues to enjoy the role of being the asshole in Beijing’s cupboard. German chancellor Merkel might take turns with him later this year. Both she and her Tibetan friend Dailai are viewed favorably by adults in Europe’s largest five countries, plus the USA, according to a market survey by an institute I’ve never heard of before.

I strongly differ. As far as Ms Merkel is concerned, anyway.

Happy weekend.

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