March 12, 1980: Deng Xiaoping calls for streamlining the army
On March 12, 1980, Deng Xiaopeng made a speech at an enlarged meeting of the Standing Committee of the Military Commission of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
In the speech entitled "Streamline the Army and Raise its Combat Effectiveness", he said that the problems of the army included four main ones: First, reducing "bloatedness"; second, reforming structure; third, improving training; and fourth, strengthening political and ideological work.
One of the important questions relating to structure and systems is the establishment of a system of military service and of retirement for officers, he said.
"We must have a retirement system. Not only the army but also the civilian units should work one out. The State Council should see to this," said Deng.