The Ten Pillars of the People’s Liberation Army Air Force: An Assessment

During Secretary of Defense Robert Gates’s visit to China in January 2011, he stressed the importance of solid military-to-military relations. As a result of this visit, the U.S. Air Force (USAF) and People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) will hopefully engage each other through military exchanges across a wide range of issues rather than in combat. The purpose of this report is to help analysts at different levels (tactical, operational, and strategic) examine and engage the PLAAF using the Ten Pillars as a base. The Ten Pillars include organizational structure, leadership, doctrine, officer corps, enlisted force, education, training, logistics and maintenance, and foreign relations.