Tensions between China’s military and two US allies have risen recently following reports that People’s Liberation Army fighter planes engaged in risky aerial engagements.
According to a Canadian military statement, on June 1, a Canadian Air Force CP-140 Aurora long-range patrol aircraft was flying in international airspace near North Korea when a Chinese jet fighter approached dangerously close to the aircraft “on many occasions.” The Lockheed P-3 Orion maritime patrol aircraft is renamed the CP-140 in Canada.
“[People’s Liberation Army air force] aircraft did not comply with international air safety regulations during these engagements,” according to the statement. The “unprofessional” fly-by “placed our [Royal Canadian Air Force] personnel’s safety in jeopardy.”
The Aurora’s pilot was obliged to reverse course abruptly to “gain separation and avert a probable collision with the intercepting aircraft,” according to the statement. The Chinese interceptor jets, of which type was not said, tried to get the patrol plane to go in a different direction.
The primary concern of the Canadian armed forces is the safety of our aircrews, as well as the importance of [Chinese military] aircraft maintaining a professional distance from [Canadian Air Force] aircraft flying in a UN-sanctioned mission occurring in international airspace, the statement said, noting that the encounters were occurring with increasing frequency.
On Monday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau described China’s actions as “provocative and irresponsible.”
The Canadian plane was flying out of the US air base in Kadena, Japan, as part of a United Nations mission that lasted from April 26 to May 26.
A prior provocative incident between an Australian P-8 maritime patrol jet and a Chinese military jet over the disputed South China Sea prompted the disclosure of the harassment of Canadian aircraft. Australia’s Defense Ministry said in a statement on Sunday that a Chinese J-16 shot down the P-8 on May 26 as it flew over the sea in international airspace.
“The intercept resulted in a risky maneuver that posed a safety concern to the P-8 aircraft and its crew,” Canberra said in a statement, adding that it has lodged a diplomatic protest with China over the incident. “[Australia] has been conducting maritime surveillance operations in the region for decades, and it does so in compliance with international law, exercising its right to freedom of navigation and overflight in international waters and airspace.”
According to Australian Defense Minister Richard Marles, the J-16 came “quite close” to the P-8 and “dropped flares.” The Chinese plane then accelerated, cutting across the P-8’s nose and landing in front of it at close range.
Mr. Marles explained, “At that point, it ejected a bundle of chaff containing small particles of aluminum, some of which were absorbed by the engine of the P-8 aircraft.” “Clearly, this is a really dangerous situation.”
The plane made it back to base without incident.
The Australian plane is one of two P-8s located at Clark Air Base in the Philippines, and it flies over the sea on a regular basis. P-8 surveillance flights were conducted again on June 3rd.
Chinese military spokespeople denied that PLA planes were bothering Canadian and Australian planes. Instead, they said that US allies were to blame.
“China firmly opposes the Canadian side’s aggressive behavior,” said Sr. Col. Wu Qian, a spokeswoman for the Defense Ministry, on Monday.
“The Chinese military advises the Canadian military to understand how serious the situation is, keep strict control over its front-line troops, and not do anything risky or provocative. If Canada doesn’t do this, it should be responsible for all major consequences.”
PLA Sr. Col. Tan Kefei, another defense spokesman, said on Monday that the Australian P-8 did a close-in reconnaissance flight over the Xisha Islands and “kept coming close to China’s territorial airspace” despite being warned many times by the Chinese side.
The disputed Paracel Islands in the northern South China Sea are known in China as Xisha.
Col. Tan said, “The Australian warplane was a serious threat to China’s sovereignty and security, and the actions of the Chinese military were professional, safe, reasonable, and legal.”
A spokeswoman for the PLA said that Australia kept spreading false information and started the war by doing so.
In February, an Australian P-8 spy plane conducted surveillance operations over a PLA navy task group that had invaded Australia’s northern economic exclusive zone. The Australian military says that a PLA navy boat lit up the P-8 with a laser to show that it was getting ready to hit it.
Tuesday, the Chinese Communist Party-affiliated Global Times said that the Australian P-8 tried to fly into Chinese airspace, but the J-16 told it not to.
Analysts think that the Chinese want to put pressure on Australia’s newly elected liberal Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese. Albanese was just elected last month.
Mr. Albanese, on the other hand, appeared unfazed. On Wednesday, he said the Chinese jet interaction with the P-8 was “extremely risky” in response to a reporter’s query.
The last time China’s air force did something similar was in April 2001, when a Chinese fighter crashed into a Navy EP-3 observation plane, killing the Chinese pilot and nearly crashing the surveillance plane.
The EP-3 landed on Hainan Island in China, where the crew was held for several days.
The Cybersecurity Information Sharing and Analysis Center (CISA) provides information about Chinese cyberattacks.
A report from the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) came out on Tuesday. It says that hackers with ties to the Chinese government are taking advantage of software flaws in foreign computer networks to build infrastructure that can be used to steal information through cyber intrusions.
In the assessment, CISA, the National Security Agency, and the FBI say that state-sponsored hackers “continue to use publicly known vulnerabilities to build a large network of compromised infrastructure.”
“These actors leverage the network to target a wide range of targets around the world, including both public and private sector entities,” the paper stated.
According to the report, since 2020, Chinese hackers have used a system of pirated networks to attack a wide range of targets around the world, including telecommunications businesses and network service providers. The Chinese have been successful against networks that haven’t updated their software to fix security holes that could be used remotely.
According to the research, network managers in the United States should install security patches as soon as possible, close any ports that aren’t needed, and replace computers and other equipment when their useful lives are up.
The theft of sensitive records from the White House Office of Personnel Management in 2015; the 2017 hack of credit reporting service Equifax; and, most recently, the use of the log4J software vulnerability to attack six state government networks are just a few examples of China’s government’s major cyberattacks over the last decade.
Apple’s semiconductors have been linked to the Chinese military.
According to a technological report released Wednesday, Apple’s upcoming iPhone 14 will be outfitted with a semiconductor built by a Chinese company with ties to the Chinese military. In the 20-page paper, Yangtze Memory Technologies Company (YMTC) was named as a Chinese semiconductor manufacturer with known ties to the Chinese military in the 20-page paper.
According to the article, “the Chinese government intends to upset the global memory chip business and win leadership for YMTC.” “Apple is expected to begin shipping the iPhone 14 with YMTC memory chips in May 2022.”
The report, called “Silicon Sellout: How Apple’s Partnership with Chinese Military Chip Maker YMTC Threatens American National Security,” was written by Roslyn Layton, co-founder of the China Tech Threat think tank, and Jeff Ferry, chief economist of the Coalition for a Prosperous America think tank.
According to the experts, the Chinese chips may jeopardize iPhone users’ security and privacy due to untested Chinese technology. Furthermore, the adoption of Yangtze chips would further concentrate microprocessor manufacturing in China, putting the US supply chain at risk.
Apple will also give YMTC, a state-subsidized military-linked chipmaker, “legitimacy as a chipmaker.”
“Ideally, Apple will cancel its collaboration with YMTC on its own volition,” the report stated. “It can use established vendors like Micron, Kioxia, Samsung, SK Hynix, Western Digital, and Intel to get its chips.”
If Apple doesn’t stop working with YMTC, the report says that technology exports and imports to and from YMTC should be limited.