A senior Republican said the Chinese communist regime is using American technology to develop its new weapons systems and exploiting predatory international deals to secure access to vital commercial infrastructure.
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) said Chinese weapons, including the hypersonic missile tested by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) last year, were built with American technology.
“What is probably the biggest highlighted example of this? The hypersonic missile,” McCaul said during a fireside chat with the Atlantic Council, a DC-based think tank. “The weapon that China launched with great precision… and can actually carry a nuclear warhead.”
“If you study it, you’ll find that it’s actually built on the backbone of American technology.”
McCaul’s comments come shortly after the release of a report by intelligence firm Strider Technologies that found at least 162 researchers from the United States’ top nuclear facility have since worked for China, many of them in military capacities, including hypersonics.
Infiltrate the west
Both McCaul and the report said that many of the CCP’s overseas programs, such as its 1,000 Talents program, are specifically designed to harvest intellectual property from the United States.
“What they’re doing is infiltrating our researchers and giving them a lot of lots,” McCaul said.
“And some will give that R&D back to the mother ship in China as part of the 1,000 Talents program.”
McCaul, who is now the senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said he first became concerned about the CCP threat in 1996. At the time, he said, he was a US attorney working on campaign finance cases.
Among those cases, he said, was that of Johnny Chung, who was embroiled in a campaign finance lawsuit after giving hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Democratic National Committee. At least $35,000 of that money, Chung later said, came directly from China’s military intelligence and was intended to influence US elections.
“It really exposed this plot to influence our elections,” McCaul said.
By interfering in US elections, McCaul said, the CCP was trying to ensure that US policies were pro-China, even at the cost of eroding US national security.
A similar process was repeated in New York City last year, according to a Justice Department lawsuit alleging that CCP intelligence agents plotted to assault or otherwise silence a US Army veteran running for state office bring.
Beyond the United States, McCaul said the CCP has armed its diplomatic and economic ties and created supply chain dependencies in countries where it does business to exploit the ties and gain access to new ports and airfields.
“China is in Afghanistan signing leases as we speak and I predict they will be granted access to Bagram Air Base,” McCaul said.
“Believe them appreciation. We can’t just say, ‘You’re bad,'” McCaul added. “You are very smart and a worthy opponent. We just have to compete with them.”
To counter these efforts, McCaul said, the United States must reinvigorate its diplomatic and economic deals with nations around the world to ensure those nations know that the United States cares more about their welfare than the CCP.
Over the past thirty years, by allowing the CCP full access to the world stage to do as it pleases and not having active relationships around the world, the Chinese regime has been able to transform the international system exploit .
To that end, McCaul cited the perspective a senior US military officer had given him several years ago.
“We really tried to bring [China] In the family of nations, we wanted them to move forward and become more democratic,” McCaul recalled the officer’s words.
“It just didn’t work.”