China hosts cadets from mil­i­tary academies around the world, boost­ing ties and mu­tual un­der­stand­ing

Global Times US Edition - - INDE -

A to­tal of 104 cadets from mil­i­tary academies in 12 coun­tries at­tended a week-long ex­change pro­gram in China

Young cadets, most of whom are re­serve mil­i­tary of­fi­cers in their coun­tries, took the chance to com­mu­ni­cate with each other

Both Chi­nese and for­eign cadets un­der­stood each other bet­ter af­ter the pro­gram, which might in­flu­ence fu­ture bi­lat­eral re­la­tions and mil­i­tary re­la­tions Cour­tesy of Duan Wei, Huang Ji, Wang Rui a re­lease from China’s De­fense Min­istry.

ICW aimed to en­hance un­der­stand­ing, to learn from each other, to co­op­er­ate and to cre­ate a shared fu­ture. The pur­pose has never changed. The world needs to know China and its mil­i­tary; and the Chi­nese mil­i­tary also needs to go on the in­ter­na­tional stage.

These cadets live and un­dergo mil­i­tary ex­er­cises un­der the com­mand of the PLA. Their train­ing cour­ses in­cluded gun shoot­ing, in­door ob­sta­cle cour­ses, field train­ing, stim­u­la­tion train­ing of ac­tions of the UN Peace­keep­ing Force and cour­ses on Chi­nese tra­di­tional cul­ture.

Most of the for­eign cadets came to China for the first time and their ini­tial im­pres­sions of China dif­fered widely.

Liu Jin­rui, a Chi­nese cadet born in 1996, told the Global Times, “Be­fore com­ing to China, a cadet from Thai­land thought that China is a closed coun­try with no in­ter­net, no med­i­cal treat­ment and no free­dom.”

Aside from know­ing more about China, cadets from dif­fer­ent coun­tries used the event to com­mu­ni­cate with each other.

Cadets from In­dia and Pak­istan talked with each other hap­pily, and cadets from France, the Nether­lands and other coun­tries usu­ally got to­gether to share opin­ions.

Patrick from the Mil­i­tary School of Saint-Cyr in France said that his pur­pose to at­tend the ICW in Nan­jing was to know more about China’s ad­vanced weaponry and how they use it to meet de­mands of mil­i­tary ac­tions in modern times. What in­ter­ested him most is the Chi­nese sol­diers – how they learn and do ex­er­cises.

The Mil­i­tary School of Saint-Cyr, known as Saint-Cyr, is a fa­mous French na­tional mil­i­tary academy at Coëtquidan, and was founded in Fon­tainebleau in 1803 by Napoleon.

Patrick is a Ger­man and was sent to study in Saint-Cyr un­der the EU ex­change rules. He now stud­ies in­ter­na­tional re­la­tions at Pek­ing Univer­sity.

Bie said that they ar­ranged a pa­rade for all the cadets from dif­fer­ent coun­tries to let them know that “the world is fan­tas­tic due to its dif­fer­ences.”

“Some for­eign mil­i­tary of­fi­cers said that they had not ex­pected the PLA would be so open that they could take pic­tures of ev­ery­thing dis­played to them,” Bie said, not­ing that dis­play­ing an open im­age of the Chi­nese mil­i­tary is very im­por­tant.

The PLA was founded on Au­gust 1, 1927. That makes it much younger than the Bri­tish Army, founded in 1701, and the US Army, founded in 1775.

Cadets from the PLA who at­tended the ICW are mostly in their 20s. They went through rigid ex­er­cises in the 2nd and 3rd year of their mil­i­tary academies and are phys­i­cally ag­ile and dis­ci­plined.

These cadets, although calm when at­tend­ing the ICW could not hide their youth­ful pas­sion.

The Chi­nese cadets who at­tended the ICW, also had a chance to learn other coun­tries’ strengths and their de­vel­op­ment paths.

Li Min­rui, born in 1998, looks like a high school stu­dent. He usu­ally car­ries an iPad in his back­pack and wears Xiaomi’s fit­ness tracker.

Li told the Global Times that he re­spects the late Chair­man Mao Ze­dong and likes read­ing the book Mis­ery and Glory writ­ten by Ma­jor Gen­eral Jin Yi­nan, who is a pro­fes­sor from the PLA’s Na­tional De­fense Univer­sity.

“Talk­ing about un­der­stand­ing each other is easy, but ac­tu­ally do­ing it is hard. Our com­mu­ni­ca­tions with for­eign cadets over the seven days were lim­ited, but it is bet­ter than noth­ing,” Li said.

“We usu­ally know about other coun­tries through me­dia re­ports, but through this event [ICW] we con­tacted each other and got to know sol­diers from dif­fer­ent coun­tries. We can feel the dif­fer­ences be­tween each other. De­tails showed the dif­fer­ences in our way of think­ing, the mil­i­tary ex­er­cises and the lead­er­ship abil­i­ties. We could learn from these dif­fer­ences, some­times to avoid dis­putes and some­times for fu­ture ref­er­ence,” Li said.

Zhu Yun­liang, a Chi­nese cadet for the ICW, said that he was im­pressed by Patrick’s knowl­edge of China.

“He knows a lot about China and even about my home prov­ince, He­bei. He can talk about some in­ter­est­ing sto­ries of some Chi­nese celebritie­s and of­ten reads The Art of War, a book on an­cient Chi­nese mil­i­tary tac­tics,” Zhu said.

In Zhu’s eyes, Patrick has good pro­fes­sion­al­ism. “Although he could not


A cadet from Pak­istan prac­tices gun shoot­ing at the 6th In­ter­na­tional Cadets Week (ICW), which was held in Nan­jing, East China’s Jiangsu Prov­ince from Oc­to­ber 28 to Novem­ber 5. Top left: Cadets from dif­fer­ent coun­tries talk at the 6th ICW. Top right: Cadets play games to­gether at the 6th ICW.

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