About the Contributors

By NDU Press Chairman Xi Remakes the PLA

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Chairman Xi Remakes the PLA → About the Contributors

About the Contributors


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Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga is a Policy Analyst at the RAND Corporation, where he focuses on Asian security issues. Prior to joining RAND, Beauchamp-Mustafaga was the Editor of the Jamestown Foundation’s China Brief. He has also spent time with the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), the Center for International and Strategic Studies at Peking University (CISS) under Wang Jisi and Zhu Feng, and the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission (USCC). Beauchamp-Mustafaga graduated from the dual-degree MSc in International Affairs program at the London School of Economics and Peking University, and earned a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs and Chinese Language and Literature from the Elliott School of International Affairs at The George Washington University.

Dennis J. Blasko is an Asian Analyst in the China Security Affairs Group at CNA Corporation. He is a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army. He served as an army attaché in Beijing and in Hong Kong from 1992 to 1996. Blasko is the author of The Chinese Army Today: Tradition and Transformation for the 21st Century, 2nd edition (Routledge 2012).

Edmund J. Burke is a senior intelligence and defense researcher at the RAND Corporation. Mr. Burke has served in and out of government as a China specialist since 1988. Immediately prior to joining RAND, he was a Senior Executive and the senior China officer at NGA. Mr. Burke was in the private sector from 2001-2009; in 2003 he founded a consulting firm, which was eventually acquired by a large defense contractor. From 1997-2001 Mr. Burke was an all source analyst, manager and PDB briefer at CIA. He spent his first nine years of government service as a China analyst at the National Photographic Interpretation Center. is a senior intelligence and defense researcher at the RAND Corporation.

Arthur Chan was previously a policy analyst at the RAND Corporation. Prior to joining RAND, he worked at the National Bureau of Asian Research, the American Enterprise Institute, the NYU Department of Politics and the U.S. Embassy in Paris, France. Arthur holds a Masters in European Affairs from Sciences Po Paris and a BA in political science and French from New York University. He is a native speaker of Cantonese and has professional proficiency in Mandarin and French.

John Chen is a Research Associate at the Special Programs Division of SOS International, where he conducts China-related research and analysis on foreign policy, national security, and science and technology issues using Chinese-language sources. He received an AB from Dartmouth College and an MA from Georgetown University.

Tai Ming Cheung is Director of the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation (IGCC) located at the University of California, San Diego in La Jolla. He leads the institute’s Study of Innovation and Technology in China project that examines China’s efforts to become a world-class science and technology power. Dr. Cheung is also a professor at the School of Global Policy and Strategy at UC San Diego, where he teaches courses on Chinese foreign and defense policy and Chinese security and technology policy. Dr. Cheung is a long-time analyst of Chinese and East Asian defense and national security affairs, especially defense economic, industrial and science and technological issues. He is the author of Fortifying China: The Struggle to Build a Modern Defense Economy (Cornell University Press, 2009), editor of Forging China’s Military Might: A New Framework for Assessing Innovation (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014), and co-editor of The Gathering Pacific Storm: Emerging US-China Strategic Competition in Defense Technological and Industrial Development (Cambria Press, 2018). He was based in Northeast Asia (Hong Kong, China, and Japan) from the mid-1980s to 2002 covering political, economic, and strategic developments in Greater China and East Asia as a journalist for the Far Eastern Economic Review from 1988-1993 and subsequently as a political and business risk consultant for a number of companies, including PricewaterhouseCoopers. Dr. Cheung has a PhD in War Studies from King’s College, London.

John Costello is Director of the Office of Strategy, Policy, and Plans in the National Protection and Programs Directorate at the Department of Homeland Security. He coauthored this chapter before taking his current position. Previously, he served as a Cybersecurity Policy Fellow in New America’s Cybersecurity Initiative and a Senior Analyst for Cyber and East Asia at Flashpoint. He is also a former Congressional Innovation Fellow for majority staff in the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. During his time on the Hill, Costello helped investigate the 2015 breach into the Office of Personnel Management and helped oversee federal IT management. Previously, Costello was a research analyst at Defense Group, Inc., where he concentrated on Chinese cyber espionage, information warfare, and intellectual property theft. He is a U.S. Navy veteran, former NSA analyst, and is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, having graduated with honors from the Defense Language Institute. His insights have appeared in Wired, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Reuters, and the Jamestown China Brief. Costello’s research focuses on Chinese cyber forces, evolving technology and innovation environment, and quantum technologies.

Mark R. Cozad is a senior international defense research analyst at RAND. Previously, he served in both the military and intelligence community in a variety of areas including intelligence analysis, targeting, operational planning, and strategy development. Cozad’s work at RAND focuses on strategic warning, intelligence analysis, and security issues in Europe and East Asia. In his final assignment in the intelligence community he served as the deputy to the Assistant Deputy Director of National Intelligence for the President’s Daily Brief (PDB). Immediately preceding his assignment to the ODNI, he was the Defense Intelligence Officer for East Asia, the senior intelligence officer on that issue within the Department of Defense.

Andrew S. Erickson is a Professor of Strategy in the U.S. Naval War College (NWC)’s China Maritime Studies Institute (CMSI). As a core founding member, he helped to establish CMSI and to stand it up officially in 2006, and has subsequently played an integral role in its development. CMSI has inspired the creation of other research centers, to which he has provided advice and support. Since 2008 Erickson has been an Associate in Research at Harvard University’s John King Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies. He is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Kim Fassler is a political-military analyst at the U.S. Department of Defense where her focus includes U.S.-China relations and East Asia political and security issues. She holds an M.A. in international relations from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a B.A. in political science and Chinese from Williams College. Ms. Fassler also studied at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center on a National Security Education Program Boren Fellowship. Originally from Honolulu, she worked in journalism, public relations, and energy consulting before starting her career with the U.S. Government.

David M. Finkelstein is a Vice President of CNA and Director for China and Indo-Pacific Security Studies. A retired U.S. Army Officer, Dr. Finkelstein held command and staff positions in various field units and China-related positions at the Pentagon. He also served on the faculty at West Point, where he taught Chinese and Japanese history and the history of warfare in Asia. Finkelstein holds a Ph.D. in Chinese and Japanese history from Princeton University, is a graduate of the United States Military Academy, the U.S. Army Command & General Staff College, and the Army War College. He also studied Mandarin Chinese in Tianjin, China at Nankai University. A long-time student of Chinese security affairs, his edited volumes include Chinese Warfighting: The PLA Experience Since 1949 (ME Sharpe), China’s Revolution in Doctrinal Affairs: Developments in the Operational Art of the People’s Liberation Army (CNA), Civil-Military Relations in Today’s China: Swimming in a New Sea (ME Sharpe), and China’s Leadership in the 21st Century: The Rise of the Fourth Generation (ME Sharpe). His historical monograph, From Abandonment to Salvation: Washington’s Taiwan Dilemma, 1949-50 (George Mason University and Naval Institute Press), was hailed in Presidential Studies Quarterly as “blazing a new trail” and as certain to “take an important place in the literature of U.S.-China relations in the mid-20th Century.”

Daniel Gearin is a liaison officer with the Department of Defense, currently serving in Taipei, Taiwan. Daniel previously served as an analyst with the Department of Defense, focusing on China’s military capabilities. Before joining the Department of Defense, Daniel held research positions with the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, the National Defense University, and the Brookings Institution. He obtained a B.A. in International Affairs from Northeastern University, and an M.A. in International Affairs from the George Washington University. Daniel also spent two years living in Beijing, China studying Mandarin Chinese.

Justin Godby is a Department of Defense political-military analyst specializing in East Asia security issues. He previously served as a liaison officer to the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Asia-Pacific Security Affairs and as a researcher for James Madison University’s Institute for National Security Analysis. Mr. Godby will graduate in 2018 with a M.S. in Strategic Intelligence from the National Intelligence University created by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Mr. Godby attended James Madison University and graduated with a B.S. in Information Analysis and a minor in Asian Studies.

Brian Lafferty is a Chinese language researcher at the Special Programs Division of SOS International, specializing in research on China’s defense science and technology development. He has written a number of articles, briefs, and conference papers concerning China’s civil-military integration. Dr. Lafferty holds a B.A. from Cornell University and received his Ph.D. from Columbia University.

David C. Logan is a Ph.D. Student in Security Studies at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, where his research focuses on U.S.-China security relations and nuclear strategy and arms control. His writing has been published by Asian Security, Nonproliferation Review, Foreign Affairs, Joint Force Quarterly, and the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Mr. Logan attended Grinnell College and received his MPA in International Relations from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.

LeighAnn Luce is an independent analyst specializing in Chinese civil-military integration and science and technology development with a particular focus on defense electronics and information technology. She has previously worked as a senior engineer at SOS International’s Special Programs Division as well as an Associate Deputy Director of Technical Analysis at Defense Group Incorporated’s Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis. Ms. Luce attended the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs and received a dual B.A. in International Relations and Chinese Language and Literature, with concentrations in Asian Studies and International Economics.

Ma Chengkun is Professor and Dean of the College of PLA Studies at Taiwan’s National Defense University. Professor Ma received his Ph.D. in China’s war behavior study from National Taiwan University and specializes in People’s Liberation Army affairs. His articles include “China’s security strategy and military development” and “China’s three warfares against Taiwan.” Professor Ma is currently researching China’s military strategic thinking and military transformation and participates in international academic exchanges about China’s military modernization with various countries.

Joel McFadden is a specialist in East Asian politics and security issues with the U.S. Department of Defense. Prior to joining the federal government in 2008, he worked for U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) as a senior aide on defense and greater China policy. Mr. McFadden holds a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and has also studied Chinese history and language at Fudan University in Shanghai. He spent most of his youth living in the Asia-Pacific region including Taiwan.

Joe McReynolds is a Principal Cyber Analyst at SOS International. His research interests primarily center on China’s approach to computer network warfare and defense science & technology development. Mr. McReynolds has previously worked with the Council on Foreign Relations and the Pacific Council for International Policy, and is a graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and Graduate Security Studies programs. He speaks and reads Chinese and Japanese, and has lived and studied in Nagoya, Guilin, and Beijing.

Ian Burns McCaslin is a contract researcher at the U.S. National Defense University’s Center for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs and a China Aerospace Studies Institute (CASI) Associate. Previously, he worked as an intern at the Project 2049 Institute. He received his B.A. in International Studies with a minor in Mandarin Chinese from Ohio Wesleyan University and his M.A. in International Relations from the National University of Singapore (NUS). At NUS his thesis focused on the role of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in China’s foreign policy and behavior abroad using the Korean War, 1995-1996 Taiwan Strait Crisis, and the South China Sea as case studies. He has also studied at National Taiwan University and Fudan University.

Erin Richter is a Senior Intelligence Officer for the Defense Intelligence Agency where she has specialized in Chinese military capabilities and civil-military interdependencies for the last 14 years. Erin has served for the last 20 years in the United States Marine Corps as a logistics officer, intelligence officer, and reserve attaché, completing reserve and active duty assignments throughout the Indo-Pacific, in the Middle East, Balkans, and within the continental United States. She is a graduate of the Marine Corps Command and Staff College and Joint Forces Staff College, and holds a M.A. in International Affairs from American University and a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Maryland.

Phillip C. Saunders is Director of the Center for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs and a Distinguished Research Fellow at National Defense University’s Institute for National Strategic Studies. Dr. Saunders previously worked at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, where he was Director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program from 1999-2003, and served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force from 1989-1994. Dr. Saunders is co-author with David Gompert of The Paradox of Power: Sino-American Strategic Restraint in an Era of Vulnerability (NDU Press, 2011) and co-editor of five books on Chinese military and security issues. Dr. Saunders attended Harvard College and received his MPA and Ph.D. in International Relations from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.

Andrew Scobell is a Senior Political Scientist at the RAND Corporation. He was previously an Associate Professor of international affairs at the George H.W. Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University. He is the author of China’s Use of Military Force: Beyond the Great Wall and the Long March (Cambridge University Press, 2003) and co-authored China’s Search for Security (Columbia University Press, 2012). In addition to editing or co-editing 12 books, Dr. Scobell has written dozens of reports, monographs, journal articles, and book chapters. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University.

Joel Wuthnow is a Research Fellow in the Center for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs at National Defense University’s Institute for National for Strategic Studies. He also serves as an adjunct professor in both the Eisenhower School at NDU and the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Dr. Wuthnow has worked as a China analyst at CNA, a postdoctoral fellow in the China and the World Program at Princeton University, and a pre-doctoral fellow at The Brookings Institution. He is the author of Chinese Diplomacy and the UN Security Council (Routledge). Dr. Wuthnow holds degrees from Princeton University (A.B., summa cum laude, in Public and International Affairs), Oxford University (M.Phil. in Modern Chinese Studies), and Columbia University (Ph.D. in Political Science).