Willy’s Corner

White Paper Expounds Civil-Military Relations in Xi Era

As the world observed the 26th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, the focus has remained on how this cataclysmic event has rolled back reforms and exacerbated the trend of major clans in the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) monopolizing the nation’s economic and political resources.... MORE

The Generals’ Growing Clout in Diplomacy

A recent foreign policy debate in the Chinese media has thrown into sharp relief the extent of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) generals’ influence on the country’s diplomacy. Wang Zhanyang, a liberal academic at the Central Institute of Socialism, caused a stir when he argued... MORE

China’s Soft-Power Deficit Widens as Xi Tightens Screws Over Ideology

Even for a country that is notable for its myriad contradictions, the gap between China’s hard and soft power has never been more pronounced. The year 2014 has witnessed the kind of global hard-power projection that is unprecedented in recent Chinese history. The two-year-old Xi... MORE

Xi Consolidates Power at Fourth Plenum, But Sees Limits

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) pledged to promote rule of law with Chinese characteristics at the Fourth Plenary Session of its Central Committee. President Xi Jinping, also Party General Secretary, promised that the CCP would lead the nation in “strengthening the implementation of the Constitution... MORE

Hong Kong After the Revolution

The ongoing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong—known as the “Occupy Central Movement” or the “Umbrella Revolution”—have fundamentally changed the relationship between the central government in Beijing and the Special Administrative Region (SAR). For the first time since Hong Kong’s sovereignty reverted to China in 1997,... MORE

The Rise of the Military-Space Faction

Much has been written about the growing influence of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) generals on China’s foreign policy. Little has been said about military entrepreneurs and other non-combatant PLA personnel moving into China’s domestic governance. Under Chinese President Xi Jinping, an unprecedented number of senior... MORE