In November 2002, the Chinese Communist Party held its 16th Congress and formally initiated a sweeping turnover of senior leaders in both the Party and the People's Liberation Army (PLA). The meeting heralded not merely a new set of personalities in positions of political and military power, but also the emergence of a new generation of leaders. Who are these individuals, and what does their rise mean for the future of China and its military? China matters to the United States because of its size, its spectacular patterns of growth, its profound problems linked to rapid growth, and its military intentions. Facts and trends are examined to explain the divisions and cohesions in the Chinese leadership and their potential significance to the United States and the rest of the world. Also examined is how Chinese policies have evolved over the years, and how important the United States has been in influencing China's strategy. What, for instance, will the emerging leadership with its factious differences do about Taiwan and North Korea?