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China has stolen US navy secrets and techniques to create formidable J-20 knockoff of America’s F-22 Raptor: consultants

China achieved its fifth-generation fighter jet by copying U.S. navy tech, and it may preserve its pacing problem for the American navy if extra isn’t executed to safeguard delicate weapons info, consultants inform Fox News Digital.

“What we all know is that due to the espionage efforts, [China’s] J-20 is extra superior than it in any other case could be, and that is the vital level right here,” former Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James Anderson mentioned in an interview.

“They have profited drastically from their thievery through the years,” he mentioned. “They’ve put it to good use, and so they’ve give you a complicated fifth-generation fighter,” noting that it’s “exhausting to say wanting precise fight” how the J-20 matches up towards the U.S. F-22 Raptor fighter.

China started creating its J-20 in 2008 as a part of a plan to design a brand new fighter that would compete with these in America. The airplane first took flight in 2011, with its introduction to service in 2017.


In 2015, studies on the airplane’s know-how and capabilities began to note similarities between it and U.S. fighter jets, with an Associated Press report stating that “a few of its know-how, it seems, could nicely have come from the U.S. itself.”

Now China has a fifth-generation stealth fighter, much like the U.S. F-22, which has additional closed what was as soon as a nearly insurmountable hole between the 2 militaries when it comes to technological capabilities – all due to continued mental property theft. The hole between U.S. and Chinese navy know-how has acquired renewed focus as tensions between the 2 nations proceed to extend and officers proceed to debate a potential invasion of Taiwan, which could embody a U.S. navy response. 

The F-22 Raptor, left, and the Chinese J-20 are fifth-generation fighter planes.

The F-22 Raptor, left, and the Chinese J-20 are fifth-generation fighter planes. (Paul Crock / AFP by way of Getty Images / File | Fu Tian / China News Service by way of Getty Images / File)

James Hess, professor on the School of Security and Global Studies at American Public University System (APUS), mentioned that finally the U.S. has to cope with China’s “philosophical distinction” and willingness to do what’s “greatest for China.”

“You may even look within the historical past of China with an total tradition of issues which have offered a betterment for society versus a fear about it,” Hess mentioned. “That lack of enforcement might be extra reflective of a tradition … there is definitely a cultural facet to this.”


“There’s an writer who mentioned, ‘To steal a e book is a chic offense,” so you will have that form of mentality, that information will not be essentially checked out as theft of information … will not be checked out as a capital offense by any means,” he continued. “It’s checked out as form of good factor, that it is a constructive factor you are doing.”

Anderson defined that China makes use of a spread of espionage strategies from the “old style” and “low-tech” use of spies and honey traps and bribery to recruit U.S. contractors, college lecturers and authorities personnel, along with extra superior strategies equivalent to cyberactivity to acquire key knowledge on navy techniques.

A F-22 Raptor flies in this undated image provided by Lockheed Martin.

A F-22 Raptor flies on this undated picture offered by Lockheed Martin. (Lockheed Martin by way of Getty Images)

“Unfortunately, they’ve had some success there,” Anderson mentioned, including that they spent “nicely over a decade” repeatedly going after the Joint Strike Fighter, which they’ve exploited within the design and development of the J-20.

“It saves the Chinese money and time. In impact, we find yourself subsidizing a portion of their analysis and improvement funds as a result of they’re efficiently stealing a few of our secrets and techniques,” Anderson mentioned. “Ultimately, this places our women and men at better threat on the battlefield.”


Matt McInnis, senior fellow for the Institute for the Study of War’s China program, highlighted China’s “focus … virtually greater than anything” on acquiring jet engine know-how after “struggling for many years” to maintain up with the U.S. and Western weapons.

“As somebody who’s watched China for a very long time, that’s all the time the joke … will the Chinese ever have the ability to produce their very own jet engine?” McInnis mentioned. “So, they’ve slowly been in a position to develop into extra unbiased in creating jet engines for his or her extra superior plane.”

J-20 fighter jets

J-20 fighter jets (VCG/VCG by way of Getty Images)

The drive to “perceive extra subtle jet engines” within the West has remained a big driving power for Chinese espionage, in keeping with McInnis.

He pointed to the 2022 case of Yanjun Xu, a Chinese spy who was convicted of making an attempt to steal commerce secrets and techniques from a number of U.S. aviation and aerospace corporations, together with theft of proprietary airplane engine fan know-how.


U.S. prosecutors mentioned Xu started recruiting consultants from corporations equivalent to GE Aviation in Cincinnati way back to 2013, however attorneys preserve he was not a spy and by no means requested for commerce secrets and techniques.

“It actually was an enormous win for the United States to have the ability to crack this explicit case, however on the similar time, we nonetheless have a look at what China is making an attempt to do with know-how, espionage,” McInnis mentioned, including that China is “nonetheless most likely the best menace to U.S. nationwide safety.”

McInnis additionally referred to latest efforts that included recruiting former British pilots to advise and prepare the People’s Liberation Army’s air power pilots, which has offered “one other manner they’ve tried to amass Western technical information.”

“The Chinese baseline of what the Russians have given them and what they have been in a position to steal from us and from European producers has introduced them as much as possibly solely a 10- or 15-year hole between us and Chinese jet engine know-how, whereas earlier than they have been rather more like 20 to 30 years behind us.”

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