Thesis Title

Nuclear Forces and the Geopolitical Objectives of the People's Republic of China

Date of Graduation

Spring 2000


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

William Van Cleave


The geopolitical aspirations of the People's Republic of China place this state at odds with American interests in the Pacific. Nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles are expected to be important instruments for the enhancement of Chinese power, especially in relation to the United States. Geopolitical objectives mesh with Chinese political and strategic culture to encourage China's quest for hegemony in the region. Chinese nuclear doctrine is designed to support expansion of China's influence. Improvements in China's nuclear weapons arsenal demonstrate how China is developing the capacity to meet the needs of its geopolitical objects and its military doctrine. Case studies involving India, Taiwan, the South China Sea, Japan and the United States examine the relationship of nuclear and overall military power to China's geopolitical objectives.

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Toby Lauterbach