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Weaponizing Everything, Including Lawyers and Balloons: China's 1999 Manual for Defeating America

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of
Screenshot via KSVI-TV

During its North American aerial odyssey, The Big Chinese Balloon passed within intel-gathering distance of ICBM silo fields, strategic bomber bases, key global logistics hubs (Charleston, for example), and major Army and USAF headquarters.       


The balloon wasn't just blowing in the wind. Its calculated military itinerary tells reasonable Americans and Canadians -- reasonable being a qualifier that excludes media influencers and politicians bribed or blackmailed by communist China -- that the balloon was spying on critical North American defense installations.        

Which means it had a War Mission. Note I did not write "pre-War"; I wrote "War."        

I'll explain why in a moment, but first, due praise for The Wall Street Journal's February 20 article titled: "China's Newest Weapon to Nab Western Technology -- Its Courts."        

According to the report, U.S. and EU officials "accuse China of using its courts and patent panels to undermine foreign intellectual-property rights and help Chinese businesses. They say China is focusing such efforts on industries it deems important, including technology, pharmaceuticals and rare-earth minerals."

        Beijing has weaponized its legal system to steal technology.

        Beijing's lawfare is calculated and synchronized. According to the Journal the

 EU is suing China for attempting to bar European companies from protecting their patents in courts outside China. One company official lamented: "It is puzzling that so many cases went wrong at the same time."        


Actually -- it isn't puzzling at all.        

At the bottom line, communist China is fighting a war to dominate the world. In pursuit of that goal, the Chinese state has weaponized every technology, media, and means of personal and organizational interaction,        

Informed minds assure us the study titled "Unrestricted Warfare" and published by the People's Liberation Army in February 1999 isn't a war plan. I'll agree it isn't a step-by-step plan, but it is a thoughtful and deadly intellectual guidebook China's communist leaders use to defeat the U.S. and establish a Chinese-mandated international order.        

The authors are Qiao Liang and Wang Xiangsui. When they wrote "Unrestricted Warfare," both men were People's Liberation Army Air Force colonels. Qiao later made major general.        

Chapter 2 discusses full-spectrum warfare. Its title in English: "The War God's Face Has Become Indistinct."       

Translation: In China's long war with the U.S., weather balloons and lawyer jargon are weapons that can degrade American capabilities.        

The chapter lists several types of warfare that China can use to attack and harm the U.S. without risking a military counterattack.       


Start with Drug Warfare. The authors add this comment on pushing drugs: "obtaining sudden and huge illicit profits by spreading disaster in other countries." In 1999 it was one of Qiao's and Wang's speculative options. In 2023 fentanyl is savaging American society. Beijing's delivery system for this weapon in Drug Warfare? Mexican cartels.

Here are some other Qiao and Wang options with their comments in parentheses.       

 --Psychological warfare ("spreading rumors to intimidate the enemy and break down his will").

        --Smuggling warfare ("throwing markets into confusion and attacking economic order").

        --Media warfare ("manipulating what people see and hear to lead public opinion along").

         --International law warfare ("seizing the earliest opportunity to set up regulations"). The use of courts to steal technology is another wrinkle.

        --Resources warfare ("plundering stores of resources"). China's attempt to gain control of Congo's cobalt reserves involved crooked contracts and bribery. That is white-collar plundering.

        --Economic aid warfare ("bestowing favor in the open and contriving to control matters in secret"). Controlling matters in secret hints at bribery, blackmail, and intimidation. The concept goes hand in glove with resource warfare.


        --Cultural warfare ("leading cultural trends along to assimilate those with different views"). Beijing has spent billions influencing Hollywood and social media. American teenagers love the China-sourced TikTok app. But TikTok and similar apps are potential routes for spying and disseminating psychologically and socially destructive propaganda.       

Some states are banning TikTok. We can fight back.

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