U.S. intelligence sources recently disclosed that Chinese President Xi Jinping initiated a significant military purge due to concerns about rampant corruption undermining the country’s military strength and jeopardizing its ability to wage war.
What Happened: The corruption reportedly extends to China’s Rocket Force and its defense industrial base, with examples ranging from missiles filled with water instead of fuel to malfunctioning missile silos, reported Bloomberg.
Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign within the military has resulted in the removal of over a dozen senior defense officials in the past six months, marking one of China’s most extensive crackdowns on military corruption.
Interestingly, U.S. assessments suggest that these purges have not weakened Xi’s hold on power; rather, they reflect his commitment to improving discipline and eradicating corruption within the military, thereby ensuring China’s military readiness in the long term.
The extent of corruption within China’s defense sector has raised concerns about its ability to effectively modernize its armed forces.
Xi Jinping had devoted significant resources to transform the military into a modern force by 2027, including elevating the Rocket Force, which plays a pivotal role in any potential invasion of Taiwan.
Corruption within the military has not only set back Xi’s modernization goals but also eroded confidence in China’s military capabilities, particularly the Rocket Force.
U.S. intelligence sources have highlighted the challenges in verifying these assessments, as the Chinese military does not announce its corruption investigations publicly.
Despite the uncertainties, it is clear that Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption drive within the military is continuing, with recent purges and efforts to wage a “war on graft” within the armed forces.
This content was partially produced with the help of AI tools and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.