But that didn’t stop Beijing from feeding the hype by unveiling an ambitious new program to “enhance its capability to innovate, develop and rapidly supply new-generation weaponry” on the same day it was criticizing the US for “continuing to peddle the so-called ‘China threat.'”Sino Tech army.jpg The 15-year endeavor will include “new and high-technologies for the space industry, aviation, ship and marine engineering, nuclear energy and fuel, and information technology for both military and civilian purposes,” with a “focus on development of new and high-tech weaponry.”
The effort to develop new technologies may run up against China’s continuing difficulties with fraud in its scientific and R&D communities, although the government is also introducing initiatives to confront these problems.In truth, the new military technology plan doesn’t appear to mark any actual departure from the trends the Pentagon report already noted – this is new PR and packaging, not new policy. But you’d think someone would realize that it’s difficult to protect your international image as a peaceful, stabilizing presence the same day you’re trying to instill national pride in your new, powerful, high-tech military. Maybe they should divert a few yuan to modernizing their media operation.
It’s actually been a rough couple of weeks for Chinese spokesmen addressing security relations with the US. Last week, they had to deal with a Taiwanese sales rep for Lockheed who pled guilty to spying for China and attempting to purchase US military technology for shipment to China. A few days later, they were criticizing a State Dept announcement that none of the Department’s thousands of new Lenovo computers would be used on classified networks, out of security concerns with the Chinese company’s systems. The FBI’s Chinese spy is still in the news as well.
Some days ago I posted in the Chinese new arsenal a Washington Post article that said that Beiging was far more advanced that it was thought at first time. But far more important than that was the fact that Zapatero and France have expressed their desire for a lift on the embargo on Chinese imports of weapons.