03 December 2015
In the evolution of China’s strategic thought, the centrality of information has been a perennial constant as a tool of statecraft and military power. Beijing is exploiting information operations to direct influence in areas of strategic competition.
While China’s foreign policy has traditionally relied on economic leverage and “soft power” diplomacy as its primary means of power projection, Beijing has been also actively exploiting concepts associated with strategic information operations as a means to direct influence on the process and outcome in areas of strategic competition.
In 2003, the Central Military Commission (CMC) approved the guiding conceptual umbrella for information operations for the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) – the “Three Warfares” (san zhong zhanfa). The concept is based on three mutually-reinforcing strategies: (1) the coordinated use of strategic psychological operations, (2) overt and covert media manipulation, and (3) legal warfare designed to manipulate strategies, defense policies, and perceptions of target audiences abroad.
… Michael Raska is a Research Fellow at the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies, a constituent unit of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
GPO / IDSS / Online
Last updated on 04/12/2015