The Pentagon is slowly acknowledging that China is not our friend. In its annual report on China, the Defense Department has finally admitted that Beijing’s government and military have been making computer-based attacks on the U.S. government in order to gather information related to U.S. diplomatic, economic and defense programs.
Until this report was released, the Pentagon had only allowed that there were cyber-attacks originating in China. But in February, Mandiant, a U.S.-based cyber-security firm, accused a secret Chinese military unit in Shanghai of making cyber-attacks for years against a number of American companies.
The Pentagon report stated, “In 2012, numerous computer systems around the world, including those owned by the U.S. government, continued to be targeted for intrusions, some of which appear to be attributable directly to the Chinese government and military.”
China’s belligerence isn’t confined to cyber-attacks; the report asserted that “To advance its broader strategic objectives and self-proclaimed `core interests,’ China is pursuing a robust and systematic military modernization program.” The report continued that Beijing is modernizing its short-range ballistic missiles and is looking to buy more medium-range missiles.