Sunday, April 01, 2012

Peasants into...potential CCP members

Something interesting (h/t Jamie) about the Chinese military. The strand I found worthwhile is this:

As a result, for the past decade, a major theme pounded into the troops by the General Political Department is the persistent threat from outside forces (non-Party elements) to separate the military from politics, depoliticize the military and “nationalize” the military (PLA Daily, March 19).

It is unclear who, if anybody within the PLA, proposes to separate, depoliticize or nationalize the military, but these warnings often reach high peak around the National People’s Congress, shortly after over half a million new recruits have entered the PLA and PAP. These young soldiers have just finished basic training and are entering their units. They are likely targets of this political education campaign as are other sectors of the society where such “deviant” thought may exist. A political campaign based on a non-existent (or minimally existing) straw man would not be unique to China or the CCP.

Well, no. But the thing that interests me here is that there is a link between the propaganda/media plan, the big political get-together in the NPC, and the annual conscription cycle. It's as if they were constructing the state anew every year, in a massive theatrical exercise. A real-time exercise in state formation. And it's very interesting that the propaganda construct that is exercised is explicitly directed against nationalism.

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