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China Is Developing Supersonic Plane: Reach Anywhere on Earth in One Hour

According to a study by scientists involved in Chinese missions to Mars and the Moon, China is developing a supersonic aircraft which is larger than the Boeing 737.

The aircraft is 45 meters long, nearly a third longer than the Boeing 737-700, with two aspirated engines on top of the fuselage. The design has a pair of delta wings similar to those of the Concorde, but with the wingtips pointing upward. Such a complex design poses multiple aerodynamic challenges when the aircraft enters hypersonic speeds or exceeds five times the speed of sound. Researchers are using a new aerodynamic model to evaluate the aircraft’s performance at high altitudes and has proven effective on China’s latest space missions.

Liu Rui from the Beijing Institute of Technology and collaborators from the Institute of Aerospace Systems Engineering (宇航系统工程研究所) published a paper in the journal Physics of Gases. Liu was a key scientist on the Mars landing and lunar rock sampling missions. According to official media reports both of these required the spacecraft to fly through the atmosphere at hypervelocity.

Source: Sputnik News, July 14, 2021

Global Times: South Korea’s Second “Quasi Aircraft Carrier” Officially Enters Service

Global Times recently reported that South Korea’s second amphibious assault ship Marado Island officially entered service on June 28, 14 years after the first ship Dokdo entered service. Marado Island has greatly improved based on lessons learned from the Dokdo. It is also armed with the latest equipment. Marado Island is 199.4 meters long and 31.4 meters high, and can carry around one thousand officers and soldiers. It can support the take-off and landing of five helicopters at the same time, and can also carry high-speed landing crafts as well as amphibious combat vehicles. Marado Island is equipped with four-sided fixed radar for the U.S. Aegis System and its detection and command capabilities have been further improved. The South Korean Navy stated that the Marado Island will conduct combat missions starting in October this year, after a formal evaluation of its operational capabilities.

Source: Global Times, June 29, 2021

Sputnik Chinese: China’s Nuclear Arsenal Shows Record Growth

Well-known Russian news agency Sputnik recently reported on its Chinese Edition site that the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) annual report showed the growth rate of China’s nuclear arsenal ranked among the world’s leaders for the second consecutive year. Within one year, China’s existing nuclear warheads increased by 30, reaching 350. In 2019, China surpassed France (which had 290 nuclear warheads) in this regard, and in 2020 it became the world’s third largest nuclear arsenal country. SIPRI pointed out in its annual report that China is building a nuclear-weapon society, which includes solid-fuel ground-based missiles, six nuclear submarines and bombers equipped with ballistic missiles. These strengthen its ability to respond when threatened. The report also indicated that the Chinese People’s Liberation Army has resumed the use of H6N bombers on nuclear weapons and has also developed the first H20 strategic bomber that can refuel in the air and has a flying distance of 8,500 kilometers. The major nuclear powers, Russia and the United States, reduced their arsenals of nuclear warheads last year. Russia reduced its arsenal by120 warheads to 6,255, and the United States reduced its arsenal by 150 warheads to 5550.

Source: Sputnik Chinese, June 15, 2021

China Invested in 700 Land Deals in Japan; Most Are Near Military Facilities

Chinese buyers are among the foreign investors who are buying Japanese real estate on a large scale before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. They are targeting land that is close to military facilities. The Japanese government set up an expert panel in November last year to review the national security risks of such land transactions. The panel found that at least 700 some deals involved Chinese companies.

Sankei Shimbun, a daily newspaper in Japan, reported on May 13 that most of these investment programs involved land that is located near defense bases, including: Self-Defense Forces (SDF), U.S. military bases, the Japanese Coast Guard and space development facilities.

According to the study, Chinese entities purchased 80 parcels of land in Japan’s “high security zone,” including 20 acres near the Hokkaido Self-Defense Force’s Chitose Air Base. Another deal was on Taketomi Island in Okinawa, which is near Taiwan. A third suspicious purchase gave buyers linked to Beijing control over what the SDF described as an “absolute choke point” near the vital Cape Noshappu radar base, which monitors the Russian border.

The report also mentioned a new wave of land purchases that appear to be focused on air and sea radar facilities off the coast of Japan. Examples are deals involving U.S. military bases on Okinawa and Japanese defense sites in Tottori Prefecture. The report stated that Chinese investors are targeting these areas. The reason is that these lands overlook the aforementioned facilities, enabling them to keep tabs on the activities of Japanese and U.S. ships, warplanes and personnel.

The Japanese Cabinet is considering a bill which designates real estate purchases by foreign investors within one kilometer of key facilities as meriting special review, including a requirement for the buyers to declare in advance how they plan to use the property.

Source: Epoch Times, May 16, 2021

China Adopts Anti-espionage Regulation Targeting “Hostile Forces”

On April 26, 2021, China’s Ministry of State Security released a new anti-espionage regulation, which was to be effective immediately. The regulation allows the national security authority to draw up lists of companies and organizations susceptible to foreign infiltration, treating a broad range of entities, including potentially universities and private businesses, as if they are sensitive government agencies.

The regulation specifies that agencies, social groups, enterprises, public institutions, and other social organizations are primarily responsible for the unit’s anti-espionage security work.

On April 26, 2021, officials from the Ministry of State Security explained to the press, “Overseas espionage and intelligence agencies and hostile forces have intensified their infiltration into China, with more diverse methods and in broader fields, which pose a serious threat to China’s national security and interests.”

At the same time, “the core and vital areas still have issues such as which organizations bear the primary responsibilities for anti-espionage security and prevention measures that are not institutionalized.”  Officials from the Ministry of State security said that the regulation clarifies “what, who and how” to guard against foreign espionage.

According to the regulation, the Ministry of State Security will provide companies and organizations susceptible to foreign infiltration with work manuals, guides, and other publicity and education materials. The authorities will also issue written guidance, organize trainings, hold work meetings, and supervise anti-espionage work using different methods such as reminders and advice.

Under the regulation, the companies, organizations, or social groups have the responsibility of rolling out detailed measures against foreign espionage. The measures identified in the regulation include arranging their working staff to sign letters of commitment before taking up posts, reporting their activities related to national security, briefing personnel ahead of their trips overseas, and interviewing them after their return to China.

1. People’s Daily, April 26, 2021

2. Xinhua, April 26, 2021

Chinese Military Suspected of Being behind Cyberattacks against Japanese Companies

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and many defense-affiliated companies have been subjected to large-scale cyberattacks. Japanese police believe that hacker groups may have carried out these attacks at the behest of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

JAXA suffered a cyberattack in 2016. The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department found that the attack used a server rented in Japan, and that a Chinese man in his 30s was in Japan at the time and had rented the server five times under a false name. The man, a Chinese Communist Party member, is a systems engineer. It was reported that the ID information needed to log in to the server was passed to a Chinese hacker group called “Tick.”

Police found that another Chinese man also rented a server in Japan under a false name at the behest of the People’s Liberation Army’s “Unit 61419,” a group that specializes in cyberattacks.

The police believe that the hacker group “Tick” carried out the “cyberattacks at the behest of the PLA. The 2016 attack targeted about 200 research institutions and companies, including powerful defense-related companies, in addition to the one against JAXA.

Source: NHK, April 19, 2021

BBC Chinese: Record Number of Chinese Military Aircraft Entered Taiwan Air Defense Area

BBC Chinese Edition recently reported that, according to the Taiwanese authorities, on April 12, the number of Chinese military aircraft entering the Taiwanese air defense identification area reached a single-day record of 25 aircraft, including fighter jets and bombers with the capability of carrying nuclear bombs. This happened when the United States warned that China has become more and more aggressive. The Taiwanese Ministry of National Defense also confirmed that the Taiwanese Air Force did send fighter jets to warn the Chinese aircraft and started missile defense system tracking and monitoring of the Chinese activities. Some analysts expressed the belief that this could be a response to the increased U.S. Navy’s activities in the region. It could also be utilized to prepare the public opinion, especially inside Mainland China, for potential military actions against Taiwan. China never made the promise that it would not invade Taiwan militarily.

Source: BBC Chinese, April 13, 2021

China to Strengthen Military Training for High School Students

China’s Ministry of Education and the office of National Defense Mobilization under the Central Military Commission of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) released a “Syllabus for the Military Training of High School Students.” It will be implemented on August 1, the 100th anniversary of the founding of the CCP. The syllabus specifies that the military training curriculum for Chinese high school students should not be less than 56 class hours or 7 days in total.

According to the official website of the Ministry of Education, the preamble of the syllabus, which was released nationwide on March 26 and only announced on April 13, emphasizes that the syllabus was developed in order to implement fully “the Party’s education policy,” implement “the fundamental requirements of the goal of strengthening the military,” comprehensively regulate the organization and implementation of military training for high school students, and “strengthen the building of national defense reserve forces.”

The syllabus emphasizes that the organization of student military training is a “mandatory educational activity” in high schools, and is an important measure that will implement comprehensively the “Party’s education policy,” the “strategic military policy for the new era and the overall national security concept.” It will also strengthen national defense education, the building of the national defense reserve force and the quality of education for young students.

The syllabus specifies that the military training for Chinese high school students consists of two parts: “basic military knowledge” and “basic military skills.” The teaching time ranges from 7 to 14 days, with a total of no less than 7 days and 56 class hours (one “class hour” means one class period including the class break).

Among them, “basic military knowledge” includes 24 class hours, of which 12 hours are compulsory training and 12 are of optional training. “Basic military skills” has 88 class hours, including 44 hours of compulsory training and 44 of optional training.

This syllabus strictly orders that all types of high schools should not reduce the content of military training and the required hours. Schools are also encouraged to offer courses on military knowledge and skills training to broaden the content of military training.

Source: Central News Agency, April 13, 2021