President Obama has put our national security at risk. China has been relentless in their attacks on US industry and have proved adept at industrial espionage. Obama has done nothing. China has been under a Western arms embargo since the 1989 Tiananmen Square uprising, and the only way to get Western expertise is to steal it. The latest accusation is that Chinese hackers had stolen data on the F–35 Joint Strike Fighter.
John Mueller – Armored Column
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For years, outside observers have made a peculiar observation: many Chinese weapon systems look an awful lot like their American counterparts.These dopplegangers from the Asian mainland tend to come out five to ten years after their American versions, with Chinese engineers vehemently stating any resemblance was strictly—strictly—coincidental.
A gallery of images on the Chinese web site tiexue.net titled “Sino-US equipment: Only Genuine Army Fans Know” shows more than a dozen side-by-side comparisons of Chinese and American gear. The results are interesting.
The United States and China both have nearly identical requirements for many kinds of weapon systems. And nearly identical requirements can lead to nearly identical outcomes. The eye, for example, is estimated to have evolved separately between 40 and 65 times in the entire history of life on Earth. Often there’s just so many ways to do something.
Then again, China has repeatedly been accused of using its army of hackers and IRL spies to comb the world looking for military technology. China has been under a Western arms embargo since the 1989 Tiananmen Square uprising, and the only way to get Western expertise is to steal it. The latest accusation was that Chinese hackers had stolen data on the F–35 Joint Strike Fighter.
The Chinese Joint Strike Fighter copy is known as the J–31 “Gyrfalcon”. First sighted in 2012, the J–31 (pictured top) bears a strong resemblance to U.S. fighters, particularly the F–35 Joint Strike Fighter (pictured bottom). The planes’s quick development time has led to suspicions it relies heavily on stolen U.S. technical data, and security activist Edward Snowden has alleged F–35 data was stolen by Chinese cyber spies.
Next up is the American C–17 Globemaster III (pictured top). Classified as a strategic heavy lifter, the C–17 can haul tanks from the continental United States all the way to Afghanistan, an invaluable asset for U.S. forces.
Now, China’s Y–20 heavy transport (pictured bottom). Built by Xian Aircraft Corporation, the Y–20 has virtually the same mission as the C–17. From below, the Chinese plane looks virtually identical, even down to the shape of the vertical stabilizer. In this case, China has admitted help from the Antonov design bureau, a Ukrainian aircraft manufacturer that specialized in transport and cargo planes.
Beyond that? Only China knows.