China · Information operations · Information Warfare · North Korea

DPRK / PRC / WESTPAC Ad Hoc Update (41)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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Most interesting reports involve the PLA, Chinese exports of censorship technology, and reports on US PACRIM allies.


Pompeo to Meet North Korean Counterpart on Denuclearization – WSJ

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he aims during a meeting next week with North Korea to arrange a second Trump-Kim summit early next year that could yield a ‘substantial breakthrough.’

North Korea prepares nuclear test site for inspectors | South Korea News | Al Jazeera

Pyongyang says it dismantled Punggye-ri site in May, but did not allow international inspections at the time.

North Korea reportedly readies nuclear, missile sites for inspectors

South Korea’s spy agency has observed preparations by North Korea for international inspections at several of its nuclear and missile test sites, the Yonhap news agency said on Wednesday, citing a South Korean lawmaker.

Kim Blasts ‘Vicious’ Sanctions Squeezing North Korean Economy – Bloomberg

Kim Jong Un lashed out at the “vicious” sanctions regime against North Korea in the latest sign of his frustration with the pace of peace talks with the Trump administration.

On North Korea, the South’s Leader Has One Key Point: Kim Jong-un Is Different – The New York Times

South Korea’s president, Moon Jae-in, says Mr. Kim truly wants to trade nuclear arms for prosperity. Critics say he is being duped by yet another deceitful Pyongyang dictator.

South Korean court orders Japanese firm to compensate WWII slaves | News | Al Jazeera

Landmark ruling will have a serious economic and political impact on Japanese-South Korean ties, analysts say.

North Korea women suffer serious sexual abuse, discrimination by govt.

North Korean authorities routinely commit sexual violence against women with impunity, according to the report, which was based on interviews with 54 North Koreans who fled the country and 8 former officials.

The Nuclear Dimension of Chinese Military Power | Center for Strategic and International Studies

The current focus on China’s expanding influence, conventional forces, missile forces, emerging ASAT and cyber capabilities, and its role in the South China Sea, has led much of the analysis of Chinese military developments to ignore key uncertainties. This includes China’s stockpile of nuclear weapons, and the fact that China is developing all the elements of a far more advanced Triad along with improve theater delivery systems and missiles defenses. What used to be a U.S-Russian strategic and theater nuclear arms race is now radically changing, and the nuclear balance, arms control, and the risk of actual nuclear warfare between the superpowers is becoming a contest between three superpowers and not just two.

‘Prepare for war’, Xi Jinping tells military region that monitors South China Sea, Taiwan | South China Morning Post

China must ‘take all complex situations into consideration and make emergency plans accordingly’, Xi says on visit to Southern Theatre CommandMilitary region has had to bear a ‘heavy military responsibility’ in recent years, he says

China’s Xi Jinping tells military advisers overseeing South China Sea to prepare ‘for fighting a war’ | Fox News

China’s President Xi Jinping reportedly put his military advisers overseeing operations in the South China Sea on alert last week, as the crew monitors the situation in the region — as well as in contested Taiwan.

Beijing Tells South China Sea Command: Prepare for War – Defense One

The Southern Theatre Command must \”concentrate preparations for fighting a war,\” Chinese president Xi Jinping said this week.

World War 3: China’s President Xi Jinjing orders military to ‘prepare for WAR’ | World | News |

CHINA’S President Xi Jinping has demanded the military of Southern Theater Command to “prepare for war” as he tours the country to increase confidence amid a trade war with the US.

Chinese military command monitoring Taiwan, South China Sea ordered war-ready — Quartz

The Southern Theatre Command must “concentrate preparations for fighting a war,” Chinese president Xi Jinping said this week.

Trump adviser says wants U.S.-Russia strategic talks on Chinese threat | Reuters

U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton said on Friday that the United States wanted to hold strategic talks with Russia about China’s belligerent activity. Bolton said that Chinese missile capabilities posed a threat to Russia as the “Russian heartland” was in striking distance of such missiles. He also said that the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty which the U.S. is planning to quit was “a relic of the Cold War”.

China Wants More Nuclear-Armed Submarines | War Is Boring

US to press patrols in disputed sea, China warns ‘meddlers’ – ABC News

An official says the navy will continue patrolling the disputed South China Sea.

US to press patrols in disputed sea, China warns ‘meddlers’ | Fox News

The U.S. Navy will continue patrolling the disputed South China Sea, a top Navy official said Monday, after a Chinese destroyer came dangerously close to an American Navy ship during a “freedom of navigation” sail-by near a Chinese-occupied reef.

After Laser Attacks, Pentagon Spending $200M to Protect Pilots’ Eyeballs – Defense One

The contracts came just months after the U.S. accused China of trying to blind military pilots in Africa and the Pacific.

Is a US-China war in Asia inevitable? | China News | Al Jazeera

Chinese and American officials increasingly talk about war over Taiwan and the South China Sea – could it really happen?

Gray Zones in a Blue Arctic: Grappling with China’s Growing Influence

A few days ago, Ocean Network Canada confirmed that it had installed four underwater monitoring devices built by the Sanya Institute of Deep Sea Science

Global Stocks and the Yuan Jump on Hopes for a U.S.-China Trade Truce – WSJ

Global stocks and the Chinese yuan rose sharply on indications that trade tensions between the U.S. and China are de-escalating.

The Trump Curveball: This Is What China Didn’t Expect | The National Interest

Donald Trump’s message to Xi Jinping: the United States intends to disengage with your country to the greatest extent possible.

U.S. Won’t Resume Trade Talks Without Firm Proposal From a Wary China – WSJ

The U.S. is refusing to resume trade negotiations with China until Beijing comes up with a concrete proposal to address U.S. complaints about forced technology transfers and other economic issues.

U.S. Considers Nixing Trade From Trump-Xi Meeting Agenda – Bloomberg

The White House is considering excluding trade from the agenda of a meeting between President Donald Trump and China’s Xi Jinping next month but likely won’t cancel it altogether, according to two people familiar with the matter.

U.S. Indicts 9 Chinese Cyber Spies – To Inform is to Influence

Hackers targeted U.S. turbofan jet engine tech for Chinese jetliner BY: Bill Gertz    October 30, 2018 6:01 pm The Justice Department announced the indictment of nine people on Tuesday linked to a Chinese cyber intelligence operation targeting aerospace technology. The nine people, including intelligence officers, state-controlled hackers, and recruited agents inside companies were linked…

Chinese company charged with stealing trade secrets from U.S. computer firm

The Justice Department revealed Thursday that a federal grand jury has charged companies in China and Taiwan with a scheme to steal trade secrets from Micron.

The US is partnering with Taiwan to fight China’s intellectual property theft — Quartz

The DOJ indicted a Chinese state company for stealing valuable manufacturing secrets, with the aid of Taiwan.

China is helping African countries control the internet — Quartz Africa

Beijing has trained African officials on its sprawling system of censorship and surveillance.

Web Freedom Declining as China Exports Censorship: Report | Time

Internet freedom around the world declined this past year, in part due to China’s surveillance efforts, Freedom House’s annual report said

China censorship: World internet freedom declines for 8th year in a row – CNN

Speaking before an elite audience in Washington in March 2000, then US President Bill Clinton summarized much of Western thinking on the internet when he hailed a new century in which “liberty will be spread by cell phone and cable modem.”

China Supersizes Detention Camps in Xinjiang Despite International Criticism – WSJ

Chinese authorities aggressively expanded the scale of internment camps in Xinjiang this year, according to a new study, even as China’s program of mass detentions of Muslims in the region started to draw international scrutiny.

UK says reports of internment camps in China’s Xinjiang ‘broadly accurate’ – CNN

British diplomats who visited Xinjiang, in China’s remote northwest, have confirmed reports that large numbers of Muslims are being held in so-called “vocational education centers.”

Two countries, one island Russia and China divided up an island in the Far East in 2004, and here’s how life there has changed — Meduza

Located near the city of Khabarovsk, at the confluence of the Ussuri and Amur rivers, Bolshoy Ussuriysky Island has long held strategic importance for Russia. In 2004, Moscow reached an agreement with Beijing to share the island (known as Heixiazi Island to the Chinese), dividing it roughly in half. Four years later, the new arrangement was fully in effect, and each country was free to do with its piece of the island what it liked. China transformed its side of the island into a nature reserve, attracting more than 600,000 tourists every year. On the Russian side, there are about 100 people trying to survive in ramshackle homes, and all development plans have failed to secure the necessary funding. Journalist Ekaterina Vasyukova traveled to Bolshoy Ussuriysky Island to learn more about life in a land shared with China.

Japan and China driven closer by trade tensions with US – BBC News

Trade tensions with Washington drives Tokyo and Beijing to boost economic and political ties.

China tariff effects started showing up in shipping data months ago

Maritime activity can give investors an early glimpse at economic trends, since 90 percent of the world’s trade is conducted on the global waterways.

China’s Maxim – Leave No Access Point Unexploited: The Hidden Story of China Telecom’s BGP Hijacking – To Inform is to Influence

China’s Maxim – Leave No Access Point Unexploited: The Hidden Story of China Telecom’s BGP Hijacking Chris C. Demchak, U.S. Naval War CollegeFollow Yuval Shavitt, Tel Aviv UniversityFollow DOI Erratum A revised article was uploaded including a disclaimer. Recommended Citation Demchak, Chris C. and Shavitt, Yuval (2018) “China’s Maxim – Leave No Access Point Unexploited: The…

Chinese privately developed rocket fails to reach orbit | Reuters

A privately developed Chinese carrier rocket failed to reach orbit after lifting off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center on Saturday, in a blow to the country’s nascent attempts by private companies to rival Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

Japan needs China business, pacified US-China relations – commentary

Operating under an American defense umbrella, Japan is a direct participant in a turbulent U.S.-China relationship, Michael Ivanovitch writes.

Japan Set to Build Military Base in East China Sea to ‘Deter Beijing’ – Report – Sputnik International

Tokyo and Beijing have long been involved in a territorial dispute over the disputed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea which are referred to by China as the Diaoyu Islands and which are located next to important shipping routes, as well as potentially large oil and gas fields.

India Inks $950 Million Deal for Russian Frigates

Russia has inked a $950-million deal to supply two new warships to India that will be equipped with Brahmos missiles to add to the firepower of the Navy. The two frigates of the Project 11356 class will be bought directly from Russia and a contract to build two more at an Indian yard is likely to be signed at a later stage. Sources told ET that while final clearances for the long-pending project came before the summit earlier this month between President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the deal was signed last week after price negotiations. Given that the US has implemented sanctions on weapons purchases from Moscow, India could make payments for the ships using the rupee-rouble route. The deal — under a ‘2+2’ scheme where technology will be transferred to an Indian shipyard to construct two of the frigates from scratch — has been in the works since 2015. The two frigates are likely to be brought to India after construction to fit the gas turbines at a local yard as the order for turbines has been placed directly by New Delhi with Ukraine, to bypass any complications given the Ukraine-Russian relations.

Western universities may inadvertently help China’s military: Report

Some Chinese military scientists working on at Western universities have deliberately concealed their ties to the army, according to a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.

Chinese ‘students’ hide army links to steal secrets | World | The Times

Dozens of Chinese scientists have concealed their military connections while studying at universities in America, Britain and Australia, raising concerns over whether the west has unwittingly contributed to the advancement of Beijing’s army. According to a report by an Australian think tank, dozens of Chinese people who took places in western universities used “misleading historical names” to hide their military ties.

Russia is a rising military power in the Asia-Pacific, and Australia needs to take it seriously

With Russia’s military capacity and soft power influence steadily increasing in the Asia-Pacific region, it may be time to reevaluate Australia’s Russia strategy.

Australian military base to counter Chinese Pacific influence | World | The Times

Australia will develop a military base in Papua New Guinea to counter China’s “unprecedented influence” in the Pacific, the prime minister said today. Scott Morrison described the changing dynamics of the region as Washington seeks to counter a more assertive China in his first major foreign policy speech. “Inevitably, in the period ahead, we will be navigating a higher degree of US-China strategic competition,” Mr Morrison told the Asia Society Australia in Sydney. “It is important that US-China relations do not become defined by confrontation,” he added. The South Pacific is vital to international shipping and provides a stepping stone for China and American to project military and economic power. “As economic power shifts, it’s unsurprising that nations will seek to play a bigger strategic…

Australia’s top cyber spy on Chinese tech and Canberra’s key infrastructure – INSIDER

Australia’s top cyber spy says Chinese technology like Huawei is too good and Chinese state media can’t really agree

Energy Diplomacy: An Overlooked Opportunity for Australian Foreign Policy

Editor’s Note: A version of this article was originally published by The Interpreter, which is published by the Lowy Institute, an independent,

Witness K case: watchdog investigates Australia’s spying on Timor-Leste | Australia news | The Guardian

Inspector general of intelligence services looks into Senate crossbencher complaint that bugging operation broke law