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Heavy-Handed Politics

"€œGod willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world
without the United States and Zionism."€ -- Iran President Ahmadi-Nejad

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Hu Puts Army on War Footing

By Stephanie Hoo

China's President Hu Jintao has told the army to be prepared for war while putting national defence "above all else", in comments today on the eve of the expected passage of a law that would authorise military action against Taiwan if it declares formal independence.

"We shall step up preparations for possible military struggle and enhance our capabilities to cope with crises, safeguard peace, prevent wars and win the wars if any," the official Xinhua News Agency quoted Hu as saying.

Hu's comments to the 2.5 million-strong People's Liberation Army followed his appointment earlier in the day to the government's Central Military Commission, an appointment that capped a generational transfer of power.

Hu already heads the powerful Communist Party commission that runs the military. The figurehead national legislature approved his appointment to lead the government military panel by a vote of 2,886 to six, with five abstentions.

Hu, who took over the largely symbolic military commission post from former President Jiang Zemin, has shown no sign of diverging from Jiang's hardline stance toward Taiwan, a democratically ruled island that Beijing insists is part of the communist mainland.

Full article.


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