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Austere parade on 60th anniversary
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The country's major achievements, including the PLA's latest military weaponry and equipment, will be on display at the 60th anniversary parade. But austerity will be order of the day, People.com.cn said Sunday.

Extravagance will give way to solemnity, and the money so saved will be diverted to reconstruction projects in earthquake-hit areas. The money can help fight the financial crisis, too.

"It has been the tradition to hold a grand military parade every 10 years to highlight the country's economic and military development, particularly after the reform and opening up that began 30 years ago," said Shi Yinhong, a professor of Renmin University of China.

"But it's also necessary to be economical in the face of the global financial crisis," he said.

PLA's Chief of General Staff Chen Bingde will be in charge of the preparations for the grand military parade, the report said.

"The military parade is a good way to showcase the country's economic and military strength," said Tang Xingming, an expert with the PLA Academy of Military Sciences.

China last held a massive military parade on Oct 1, 1999, when it celebrated the 50th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.

"I still remember the proud feeling of joining the celebrations on Tian'anmen Square," said Bai Meng, a 25-year-old Beijing resident, who works for a chemical company.

"I was responsible for ensuring the color of the paper flowers in the background changed at right time on Tian'anmen Square 10 years ago. The event is written in red letters in my diary and etched in gold in my memory," she said.

(China Daily January 5, 2009)

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