China: February 4, 2000


A new Pentagon study, based on the translations of 600 Chinese internal writings not intended for publication in the West, finds that China deeply distrusts the US and is focusing its efforts on ways to defeat a superior enemy in a future war. Such a victory would be achieved by both military and non-military means, including propaganda, deception, and covert actions. The internal Chinese documents sharply contradict the public statements of the Chinese government, which claims it is no threat to the US. Chinese authors seem to genuinely believe that the US is trying to dismember China by slicing off Taiwan, Tibet, and Xinjiang. While the Pentagon report is not classified, the Pentagon is strictly limiting its availability to the public. The Chinese are seeking to identify the vulnerabilities of the US military in order to exploit them. Chinese analysts have noted, for example, that the prized American aircraft carrier battle groups are hard to hide, less effective in bad weather, and extremely vulnerable in shallow or restricted waters. One document notes that precision strikes by relatively small weapons on the elevators or catapults of a carrier would render it effectively useless in combat. --Stephen V Cole


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