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Title: China's Information Warfare Discourse: Implications for Asymmetric Conflict in the
Authors: Wang, Vincent Wei-Cheng
Keywords: information warfare;asymmetric war;unrestricted warfare;cross-Strait relations;Sun Tzu
Date: 2003-06
Issue Date: 2016-10-19 16:28:22 (UTC+8)
Abstract: This paper discusses the emerging discourse on, and capability of the PRC in, information warfare (IW)-as well as the implications of such developments for cross-Strait and U.S.-PRC relations. Chinese discourse shows that informed PLA officers realize that IW constitutes the war of the future and plays a critical role in the Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) -a key step necessary for China’s military modernization. One allure of this type of warfare is the potential for China to wage an “asymmetric war” -i.e., the use of surprise force In’ a weaker party against a stronger but vulnerable adversary-by applying traditional stratagems. The Chinese argue that using such traditional maxims as Sun Tzu “overcoming the superior with the inferior” and Mao Zedong’s “people’s war” in modern war- fare would both counter overall American strengths by focusing on certain “pockets of excellence” and present China with a credible military option for achieving its political objective of unification with Taiwan (on Beijing’s terms). These strategic considerations could, however, introduce instability into the Taiwan Strait; they also challenge conventional wisdom in international relations. This paper critically evaluates the doctrinal-capability gap in China’s IW development-the double-edged nature of technology, the low connectivity of Chinese society, and Taiwan’s responses-and concludes with a cautionary note on an emergent digital “mutual assured destruction” (MAD) dynamic across the Taiwan Strait.
Relation: Issues & Studies,39(2),107-144
Data Type: article
Appears in Collections:[Issues & Studies] 期刊論文

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