General Liu Yuan. (Photo/CNS)
Hu Jintao and his successor Xi Jinping may have only limited control over the People's Liberation Army after the Chinese Communist Party's 18th National Congress this Fall, according to an analysis from Hong Kong's Mingjing News.
Only one member of Hu Jintao's faction will enter the Central Military Committee after the leadership changeover in October as Hu's suggestion for vice chairman has been basically rejected by the central committee. Hu's pick was General Liu Yuan, the son of Liu Shaoqi, the former Chinese president who was purged by Mao Zedong during the Cultural Revolution.
A source within the PLA told Mingjing that Liu, political commissar of the PLA's general logistics department, was left off the list of candidates for vice chairman because of his close ties to Bo Xilai, the disgraced former party chief of Chongqing. Liu reportedly tried hard to rescue Bo from the political scandal that blew up around him earlier this year and which led to his dismissal and detainment on "serious discipline violations."
It was not until Bo's brother Xilai, Bo Xicheng, prevailed on Liu that the general realized that he could only damage his own career by standing up for the fallen politician. Only his own ties to Hu and Xi prevented Liu from being caught up in the subsequent purge of Bo's allies and he was able to remain his position within the military.
Previous reports indicate that even if Liu is unable to become vice chairman of the Central Military Committee, there may at least be chance for him to become head of the general logistics department. The analysis in the Insider magazine, a subsidiary of Mingjing News, predicted however that Liu will get neither position and China's military will fall under the control of a group of generals with whom the public are mostly unfamiliar.
Liu Yuan 劉源