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China Report #1

Executive summary

The China BLUF Assessment from May 2021 confirms that the Chinese Communist Party’s comprehensive military modernization and expansion program is proceeding steadily. Relevant advancements from this month includes a live fireexercise using new military capabilities and the testing of a new missile system from the military standpoint; on the other hand, the launch into Mars of a heavy rocket, which marks the first step in the construction of the China Space Station (CSS) is the highlight in the technological domain. Such events open reflections to better understand the China MilitaryCivil Fusion (MCF) strategy, with special attention to be given to AI and EDT capabilities.

This month’s monitoring also shows evidence of the Chinese increasingly aggressive foreign policy and of its assertive behavior aimed at threatening the safety of Beijing’s neighbors, as well as that of US’ partners. China’s role in the Gaza crises is identified as a political opportunity to bolster Beijing national interests and a wakeup call to better understand the wider Chinese strategy in the Middle East. Further, US withdrawal from Afghanistan opens reflections about China’s future role in the country and the implications of military scenarios that might define the post-US era. China's rapprochement with South Korea also deserves attention, as well as Beijing’s strategy towards the small Indo-Pacific Islands.

In conclusion, latest development upholds how China’s wolf warrior diplomacy is undermining the western international order and its liberal values. Special focus is given to Beijing military aid in Africa in the aftermath of COVID; to China’s cooperation with countries that are showing reluctance over the QUAD in Asia, and to China’s anti-western maneuvers within the UN Security Council, including those related to Beijing’s increasingly alignment with Russia.

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