Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

Andrade’s conclusion on China: It is returning to assertive patterns of its past

Best Defense is in summer reruns. Here is an item that originally ran on June 3, 2016.

sino_vietnamese_1981-3
sino_vietnamese_1981-3

 

Best Defense is in summer reruns. Here is an item that originally ran on June 3, 2016.

A final item from Tonio Andrade’s book: He concludes in Gunpowder Age that China is returning to the assertive, even aggressive patterns of its past.

 

Best Defense is in summer reruns. Here is an item that originally ran on June 3, 2016.

A final item from Tonio Andrade’s book: He concludes in Gunpowder Age that China is returning to the assertive, even aggressive patterns of its past.

In the very long and global view he takes in the book, the last few centuries were an anomaly in Chinese history. China often had led the world in military technology, especially from the 900s to the mid-1400s, but for a variety of reasons, including a long peace, was wrong-footed from about 1700 to 1860 on guns, ships, and fortifications. Andrade sees China now in an era of “a return to a more standard pattern in Chinese history, in which wars were more frequent and military innovation deep and vibrant.”

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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