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Pentagon China report: Highly-coordinated Info War exploits compromised U.S. influencers

Chinese supreme leader Xi Jinping speaks via video link to leaders at the G20 Summit from Beijing on Oct. 31.
FPI / November 10, 2021


The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has become quite adept at shaping Americans’ view of China, a Pentagon report said.

“The PRC conducts influence operations, which target cultural institutions, media organizations, business, academic, and policy communities in the United States, other countries, and international institutions, to achieve outcomes favorable to its strategic objectives,” the report said.

The communist leaders in Beijing are convinced that open democratic societies are more susceptible to its influence operations, analysts say. They point to U.S. media outlets which often parrot Chinese propaganda messages which proclaim China poses no threat to the United States.

The report notes that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is developing advanced “digital influence capabilities” in its information warfare campaigns by incorporating artificial intelligence, which it hopes will improve the quality and deniability of its messaging.

The Chinese military has even created a special service for information and influence campaigns, called the Strategic Support Force. Within the force, the network systems department is in charge of information warfare using cyberwarfare, technical reconnaissance, electronic warfare (EW) and psychological warfare.

“Little academic research has been done in the United States to track the influence operations,” security correspondent Bill Gertz noted in a Nov. 3 report for the Washington Times.

The regime of supreme leader Xi Jinping goes so far as to fund access to travel in China as a means of influencing American institutions to avoid criticizing activities such as human rights violations and China‘s spread of nuclear arms and equipment around the world, the report said.

According to the Pentagon’s report, the PLA is using the “three warfares concept” to guide its activities: psychological warfare, public opinion warfare and legal warfare. All have been in the military‘s playbook since at least 2003.

“By placing these missions under the same organizational umbrella, the PRC seeks to remedy the operational coordination challenges that hindered information sharing under the PLA’s pre-reform organizational structure,” the report said.

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