Fallows on the Chinese Military

James Fallows shares a few thoughts on the Chinese military, and how its comportment appears a little shabby to American eyes. My only experience with actual PLA soldiers, as opposed to the ubiquitous uniformed security types in Beijing, was this group of recruits undergoing some hand to hand training on a rare smogless autumn day in Beijing. Their throwing mats are lined up beneath willow trees on a sun-dappled riverside walkway.

Every single one of these kids seemed to be thinking the same thing I was thinking: “this may be the single most pleasant hour anyone has ever spent in the Chinese army.”