Dong Jun
董军
14th Minister of National Defense
Assumed office
29 December 2023
PremierLi Qiang
CMC ChairmanXi Jinping
Preceded byLi Shangfu
9th Commander of the People's Liberation Army Navy
In office
September 2021 – December 2023
Preceded byShen Jinlong
Succeeded byHu Zhongming
Personal details
Born1961 (age 62–63)
Political partyChinese Communist Party
Alma materDalian Naval Academy
Military service
Allegiance People's Republic of China
Branch/service People's Liberation Army Navy
Years of service1979–present
Rank Admiral
Chinese name
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese

Dong Jun (Chinese: 董军; pinyin: Dǒng Jūn; born in 1961) is a Chinese admiral (shangjiang) of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) who has served as the 14th Minister of National Defense since December 2023. He has gained fame among Chinese netizens owing to the characters in his name, 董军, literally meaning "director military."

He served as the Commander of the People's Liberation Army Navy from September 2021 to December 2023. On 29 December 2023, he was appointed as the Minister of National Defense to replace Li Shangfu who was removed from office two months prior to his appointment in October 2023. He is the first Minister of National Defense from the PLA Navy.

Biography

In 1978, Dong was admitted to the Dalian Naval Academy of the Navy. After graduation, he began his service with the Navy in 1979. He has successively served as the head of the military training department of the Chinese People's Liberation Army Naval Command, the deputy chief of staff of the Beihai Fleet, and the commander of the Navy's 92269 unit.[1]

In 2013, Dong was appointed deputy commander of East Sea Fleet, and held that office until December 2014, when he was appointed deputy chief of staff of the People's Liberation Army Navy. In January 2017, he was promoted to become deputy commander of Southern Theater Command.[2] In March 2021, he became deputy commander of the People's Liberation Army Navy, rising to commander in August 2021.[3][4] He was named as the commander of the PLA Navy in September 2021.[5] He was succeeded as commander by Hu Zhongming in December 2023.[6]

He was promoted to the rank of rear admiral (shaojiang) in July 2012, vice admiral (zhongjiang) in July 2018 and admiral (shangjiang) in September 2021.[7][8]

On 29 December 2023, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress of appointed Dong as the Minister of National Defense, making Dong the first defense minister to come from a naval background. According to political scientist Wen-Ti Sung, the selection of Dong as the defense minister was possibly a sign of ongoing purges within the PLA Rocket Force and the Central Military Commission's Equipment Development Department.[9][10]

References

  1. ^ "夜话中南海:新任国防部长为何选中了海军出身的董军?". Radio Free Asia. 2023-12-29. Retrieved 2023-12-30.
  2. ^ Jiang Ziwen (蒋子文) (27 March 2017). 海军原副参谋长董军少将出任南部战区副司令员. thepaper (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 19 January 2022. Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  3. ^ 习近平今再晋升5名上将. rfi.fr (in Chinese). 6 September 2021. Archived from the original on 7 September 2021. Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  4. ^ Lin Yunshi (林韵诗) (6 September 2021). 时隔两个月再晋上将 战区军兵种军校齐换帅. caixin (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 7 September 2021. Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  5. ^ "Xi presents orders to promote military officers to rank of general". Archived from the original on 2022-05-12. Retrieved 2021-09-09.
  6. ^ Dang, Yuanyue (26 December 2023). "China names submariner Hu Zhongming as top PLA Navy commander". South China Morning Post. Archived from the original on 26 December 2023. Retrieved 26 December 2023.
  7. ^ "Xi presents orders to promote military officers to rank of general". chinadaily.com.cn. 6 September 2021. Archived from the original on 7 September 2021. Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  8. ^ Mei Changwei (梅常伟) (6 September 2021). 中央军委举行晋升上将军衔仪式 习近平颁发命令状并向晋衔的军官表示祝贺. xinhuanet.com (in Chinese). Archived from the original on 11 September 2021. Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  9. ^ "China appoints new defence minister to replace ousted Li Shangfu". Channel NewsAsia. 2023-12-29. Retrieved 2023-12-30.
  10. ^ Mahadzhir, Dzhiran (2023-12-29). "First Naval Officer Appointed as Chinese Defense Minister; Predecessor Still Missing". USNI News. Retrieved 2023-12-30.
Military offices Preceded byShen Jinlong Commander of the People's Liberation Army Navy 2021–2023 Succeeded byHu Zhongming Government offices Preceded byGeneral Li Shangfu Minister of National Defense 2023 Incumbent