China boasts that spy ships can be used as weapons against enemies: report

A new report shows China’s People’s Liberation Army official sources deny claims by their own foreign ministry that spy balls are intended for meteorological research only and describe in detail the offensive military use of near-spacecraft.

startling findings coincide with remarks made last week by US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan when he said the US wanted to “go beyond” the controversy caused by the Chinese regime’s reconnaissance balloon that hovered over Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana in February, which houses a nuclear weapon. even stored.

A Chinese spy ship the size of three Greyhound buses crossed the United States from Alaska starting in January 2023, until the huge aerial spy vehicle was shot down by an F-22 that fired a missile at it about six nautical miles off the coast of South America. Carolina in February For nearly a week, the Chinese regime’s surveillance balloon has allegedly collected intelligence on the US.


A Chinese hot air balloon is chasing an American plane.

In this photo provided by Chad Fish, a large hot air balloon drifts over the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of South Carolina, with a fighter jet and its contrail visible below, Saturday, February. 4. (Chad Fish via AP)

The China Media Research Project, run by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), has published a detailed report, including material on the Chinese military network, the official publication of the People’s Liberation Army, which, before the spy balloon flew into the United States, was published an article titled “An Omnipotent Weapon – How Amazing Are Nearby Spacecraft?”.

According to a Chinese article authored by researcher Qiang Tianlin: “The advent of near spacecraft not only exploits the connection between air and space, but also provides new ideas for air and missile defense. “Spacecraft will enable faster attacks on a global scale, which will greatly accelerate the pace of war.”

The term “near space” refers to the area where airborne devices are sent into the sky above the flight paths of commercial aircraft.

Tianlin continued that “achieving information superiority in future wars is becoming increasingly important.” He added that “near space-based vehicles can play another important role: to carry out space countermeasures and strikes.”

The significance of the MEMRI documentation is that it shows that Chinese spy balloons are designed for both espionage activities and military offensives. The Chinese surveillance balloon debate has largely focused on the intelligence that the Chinese regime’s balloon has accumulated while monitoring US states.

China hot air balloon

The US Air Force has released the first images of a Chinese spy plane taken before it was shot down.


The MEMRI report translated open-source Chinese government documents and new reports that reveal how the Asian power plant “has been used by the military in surveillance balloons, airships and hypersonic airship vehicles.”

The official Chinese media ridiculed the US after the US military shot down their balloon. According to MEMRI, Chinese media reported that the US spent more than $1.4 million to pop a $50 balloon.

MEMRI has honed a document released by the People’s Liberation Army of China, which states that balloons can “calling and mobilize the enemy’s air defense system, providing conditions for conducting electronic intelligence, evaluating the capabilities of air defense systems for early detection and rapid response.” “

The Chinese regime insisted that the balloon was civil meteorological device. The Pentagon vehemently rejected China’s explanation that it launched a weather balloon that veered off course, alleging that the Chinese deliberately aimed a spy balloon into US airspace.

After an F-22 missile shot down a hot air balloon, Chinese state media published an article titled “Airship was shot down and completed an amazing strategic research article published nine years ago.” MEMRI noted that the author of the article is Wang Xiangsui, a retired senior colonel in the Chinese Air Force. Wang wrote in his article that “airships that can stay in the air for long periods of time have high hopes of becoming the core of a new generation of air defense systems.”


A man walks past a photo of Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Museum of the Chinese Communist Party in Beijing March 3, 2023, ahead of the opening of the annual session of the National People’s Congress on March 5. (GREG BAKER/AFP via Getty Images)


Heino Klink, who served as U.S. Deputy Defense Assistant for East Asia from 2019 to 2021, wrote the analysis in the MEMRI China’s Decreasing Aggression report. He argued that regarding the spy balloon: “These repeated episodes of Chinese provocations and dangerous behavior are not new. To put these incidents in historical perspective, they are a continuation of the PRC. [People’s Republic of China] counter-normative behavior that has been going on for decades.”

One notable recent example that Klink cited was a Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy J-11 “maneuvering unsafely within 10 feet of a US Air Force RC-135 Rivet Joint reconnaissance aircraft flying in international airspace over the South China Sea.

China Military

Freshmen take part in a military exercise at Southeastern University on October 20. February 22, 2021 in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China. (Yang Bo/China News Service via Getty Images)

Klink served as the military attaché in China from 2004 to 2010 and is a member of the MEMRI Board of Advisors. China expert Klink urged the US, its allies and partners to cooperate “to prevent China’s aggression in all areas.”

Chinese Air Force Taiwanese military

In this photo released by the Xinhua news agency, an Air Force pilot from the Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s Eastern Theater Command watches as they conduct a joint combat exercise around the island of Taiwan on Sunday, August 8. On September 7, 2022, China said on Monday it was extending a threatening military exercise around Taiwan that disrupted shipping and air traffic and raised serious concerns about potential conflict in a region critical to world trade. (Wang Xinchao/Xinhua via AP)


He said: “The Biden administration has made some progress in this regard recently. However, before the US Secretary of State inadvertently assumes the role of a passionate admirer, ready to attract China on his terms, there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure that the “floor” in the relationship is truly built on solid ground, and not on the illusion of possible cooperation with China. “.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.