Daoism to Maoism and Everything in Between: Operational and Strategic Thinking in the People's Republic of China
Technical Report,01 Jun 2018,31 May 2019
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS FORT LEAVENWORTH United States
Pagination or Media Count:
After two centuries of humiliation and loss, the Peoples Republic of China is now a major political and economic actor. Western observers expected China to liberalize with economic growth, and for Chinas rise to be peaceful. Chinas economy is now second only to the United States, but China is increasingly authoritarian. While Chinas rise was largely peaceful for decades, China is increasingly belligerent and aggressively seeks territorial expansion. While Chinese leaders have worked diligently to understand the West, Western leaders have done far less to understand China. Among the many ideologies, philosophies and ideas across Chinas long history, Daoism holds a unique and powerful influence even today. For Western students of China, Daoism is a good place to begin their study. This monograph seeks to determine the extent of Daoist influence on contemporary operational and strategic thinking in the Peoples Republic of China. This monograph will address the research question, How has Daoism influenced Chinese strategy and operational art since 1949 To answer this question, this monograph includes an overview of Daoism, influences on military thought in China until 1850, influences on military thought from 1850-1949, and contemporary influences. The central thesis is that Daoism substantially influenced contemporary Chinese operational and strategic thinking in three ways through Daoist influence on Sun-Tzu and other ancient military thinkers, through Daoist influence on Mao Zedongs adaptation of Marxism into Socialism with Chinese Characteristics, and through the current hybrid of ancient and modern approaches that dominates current national security thought in the Peoples Republic of China.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Government and Political Science