Should China get into the private military company business?


free_6ix9ine

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Both the US and Russia are major players in this area. Blackwater and Wagner group are technically private "companies" but in reality are tools of the state to project military power with plausible denial ability. I think China should have its own version of Wagner group that can be used to project military power overseas in Africa or Middle East without necessarily dragging the PLA into an actual war.

Ie. Use PMC to defend China's allies across the world.
Opinions?
 

H2O

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AFAIK, PMCs are not about plausible deniability but avoiding paying out entitlements. So, the "Take your pay. Take your chances." applies here. Besides, no PMC can do business without the permission from their respective governments.
 

daifo

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China has mostly remain "neutral" to internal affairs of other states. They are okay doing buisness with whomever is in charge. That is their main selling point to all non-western country
 

Hadoren

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I think that this would be an interesting way for China's military to gain experience.

However, my main fear is that the Chinese mercenaries would perform poorly. We've already seen the Wagner Group do poorly, or even be defeated, in Libya and Mozambique - despite all of Russia's military experience.

How would an unmotivated, inexperienced Chinese mercenary group do in a place it doesn't want to be? I have great fears.

Better, in my opinion, to fight some limited border conflicts with India (although that of course also has great economic cost). At least with India, the soldiers are motivated and backed by artillery and aircraft.
 
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free_6ix9ine

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I think that this would be an interesting way for China's military to gain experience.

However, my main fear is that the Chinese mercenaries would perform poorly. We've already seen the Wagner Group do poorly, or even be defeated, in Libya and Mozambique - despite all of Russia's military experience.

How would an unmotivated, inexperienced Chinese mercenary group do in a place it doesn't want to be? I have great fears.

Better, in my opinion, to fight some limited border conflicts with India (although that of course also has great economic cost). At least with India, the soldiers are motivated and backed by artillery and aircraft.
Yeah I have the same concern. But it's a chicken or the egg problem. China lacks combat experience in modern wars. And the only way to get that experience is to participate in limited wars.
 

free_6ix9ine

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China has mostly remain "neutral" to internal affairs of other states. They are okay doing buisness with whomever is in charge. That is their main selling point to all non-western country
Yeah that stratgy is ok for trade. But if you want real alliances and geopolitical power,there has to be some military alliance as well. The US has military bases around the world. China doesn't need to go that far, but at least backing up friendly countries with military force will earn new allies across the world. That's why China had more friends when Mao was around because he didn't hesitate to help friends with arms weapon and military support.
 

Equation

Lieutenant General
Yeah I have the same concern. But it's a chicken or the egg problem. China lacks combat experience in modern wars. And the only way to get that experience is to participate in limited wars.
Did the Viet Cong need some kind of military combat "experiences" in order to defeat the French and than the US? Heck even the PLA defeated Vietnam in their short border wars back in 1979 when the Vietnamese had ALL of the experiences.
 

muddie

Junior Member
Unlike the U.S. or Russia, China doesn't have the deep sophisticated network in foreign countries to set up a private military that engages in shadow wars.

Both the U.S. and Russia have alliances and intelligence networks in foreign countries, especially middle eastern ones, as a result of the cold war. China doesn't have that and it would be terrible PR if Chinese soldiers were killed in action fighting a war the Chinese public doesn't understand. It would also complicate Sino foreign policy because there is no doubt the west would paint China an aggressor.

Unlike Russia, I don't think China wants to be that aggressive because there is a lot to lose and not a ton to gain. This is why I think China engages in a lot of peacekeeping missions, where combat experience can be gained but difficult for the west to paint China badly.
 

free_6ix9ine

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Unlike the U.S. or Russia, China doesn't have the deep sophisticated network in foreign countries to set up a private military that engages in shadow wars.

Both the U.S. and Russia have alliances and intelligence networks in foreign countries, especially middle eastern ones, as a result of the cold war. China doesn't have that and it would be terrible PR if Chinese soldiers were killed in action fighting a war the Chinese public doesn't understand. It would also complicate Sino foreign policy because there is no doubt the west would paint China an aggressor.

Unlike Russia, I don't think China wants to be that aggressive because there is a lot to lose and not a ton to gain. This is why I think China engages in a lot of peacekeeping missions, where combat experience can be gained but difficult for the west to paint China badly.
China lacks alliances and thats a big problem. I don't have much confidence in Xi Jinping to remedy that anytime soon. I feel like the mentality of China is sooo overly fixated on doing business and trade and internal issues that they relegated geopolitics to the back burner. Sure,that works fine when the US is not actively trying to surround you.

However,when the US is trying rally a bunch of countries to gang up on you, trade and business is not gonna stand in their way. You need a few countries to stand with you.

I think most of us can plainly see that Xi Jinping is hardly a skilled diplomat or strategic commander. Instead of fighting India we should be focusing on how to avoid being surrounded by the US.

The biggest mistake China made was to think the US wasn't an adversary, the second biggest mistake was to not build true alliances with other countries.
 

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