China flexes muscles with World War II military extravaganza


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Some 12,000 troops began marching through the Chinese capital Thursday morning with fighter jets set to fly overhead as China put on a massive display of military might in a parade to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

President Xi Jinping presided over the extravaganza -- the first since he came to power in 2012 -- but it was largely shunned by Western leaders, including China's former wartime allies, the United States and UK.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, President Park Geun-hye of South Korea and United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon were the highest-profile dignitaries to take their seats on a podium in Tiananmen Square, in the ancient heart of Beijing.

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