Online Event: Party on the Bridge: Political Commissars in the Chinese Navy
How does Xi Jinping's campaign to increase the power and authority of the Communist Party of China (CCP) impact the country's military preparedness? Unlike the U.S. Navy where only one individual commands a warship, Chinese naval vessels are led by two individuals, a military commander and political commissar. Both officers strive to achieve military and political objectives set forth by the CCP. From Chinese naval headquarters to individual naval vessels, the political commissar works side by side with the military commander. In addition to this dual command system, the Chinese rely heavily on a Party standing committee, which is the central nervous system for planning and developing naval operations. As China influences sea power around the globe, the Party controls future military actions. But is this dual command structure an advantage or a liability? To explore these important questions, please join the Freeman Chair in China Studies Jude Blanchette for a conversation with Commander Jeff W. Benson, U.S. Navy, Military Fellow, Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and Zi Yang, Senior Analyst at China Programme, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
The authors’ views expressed during this event do not represent those of the Department of Defense (DoD) or the U.S. Navy.
This event is made possible through general support to CSIS.