China's growing military might: top 4 concerns for the Pentagon
China continues to increase spending to grow its already considerable military, and top Pentagon officials continue to watch the developments carefully.
In this arena and others, “China’s military buildup shows no signs of slowing,” said David Helvey, deputy assistant secretary of Defense for East Asia, who presented the congressionally mandated report on the state of China’s military activities.
Here are Pentagon officials’ top four concerns as they carefully monitor the growth of China’s military.
1. Frequent cyberwarfare attacks, other espionage efforts
China has long been accused of engaging in cyber attacks and espionage on US networks, but for the first time the US military directly attributed some of those attacks to its counterparts in China, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA).
“In 2012, numerous computer systems around the world, including those owned by the United States government, continued to be targeted for intrusions, some of which appear to be attributable directly to the [Chinese] government and military organizations,” Mr. Helvey said during a Pentagon briefing this week.
The report points to cyberespionage, along with other activities – with the aim of bolstering China’s military advantages:
“China continues to leverage foreign investments, commercial joint ventures, academic exchanges, the experience of repatriated Chinese students and researchers, and state-sponsored industrial and technical espionage to increase the level of technologies and expertise available to support military research, development, and acquisition.”