May 22nd, 2014
11:03 PM ET

China’s cyberespionage presents a 21st-century challenge

By Fareed Zakaria

Some experts believe that the scale of China’s cyberespionage is off the charts. “It is the largest theft in human history,” Peter Singer of the Brookings Institution told me, pointing to one example. The United States will spend around $1 trillion developing the F-35 fighter, which will be its most advanced weapons system. “But we can now see clearly that elements of the F-35 have made their way into a similar Chinese plane. American investments that were meant to give it a 15-year battlefield advantage have been totally undermined,” Singer said. And he points out that China targets everyone from defense contractors down to furniture makers, whose chair designs get stolen and copied within a year.

Cyberattacks are part of a new, messy, chaotic world, fueled by globalization and the information revolution. In a wired, networked world, it is much harder to shut down activity that blurs the lines between governments and private citizens, national and international realms, theft and warfare. And it certainly will not be possible to do so using traditional mechanisms of national security. Notice that Washington is using a legal mechanism (which will be ineffective and largely symbolic) for what is really a national security issue.

Read the Washington Post column

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Topics: China

soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. rupert

    So there!

    May 24, 2014 at 9:50 am | Reply
  2. chri§§y

    Lol @ rupert...i was talking about your latest and greatest campaign against germans! And i was referring to Hitler as the nutjob who believed in those things...guilty conscious?

    May 24, 2014 at 10:38 am | Reply
  3. chri§§y

    Lol @ Joey we all KNOW it isnt you when your name appears in black...not to mention you do have a distinquished writing style!

    May 24, 2014 at 10:43 am | Reply
  4. chri§§y

    Lol and speaking of aliens...our old "friend" has been posting on the chart blog @ Joey! Just in case youve beem wondering on his whereabouts lmao!

    May 24, 2014 at 10:55 am | Reply
  5. rupert

    @ chrissy, some people find true love and a real deep meaning to life. In all sincerity, I deeply believe that if things were different, and we met each other in a different time and place, we would have fallen in love with one another and been united as one; true tender loving soul mates with truth, honesty, passion and the deepest love two people could ever feel. But that's not the case, so stfu!

    May 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
  6. chri§§y

    Youre right it is not the case...because i would PERSONALLY not allow you to tell me to stfu!!! Your sorry a @ @ would be sportin a fat lip in a new york minute!!!!

    May 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
  7. NATO - National Security

    It is not acceptable that China steals our secrets and our technology. Chinese should be shut out.

    May 24, 2014 at 5:46 pm | Reply
    • Joseph McCarthy

      Another ignorant comment from another lame-brained Tea Partier above. I noticed that this joker forgot to mention the simple fact that we've been doing the same thing to China for decades on end!

      May 24, 2014 at 7:21 pm | Reply
    • Maersk

      Nato-National Security, I suppose your azz has been hacked by the Chinese and your cheery is also stolen. Have you ever asked your phucking self why your azz can be hacked so easily? Is it because your uncle has been fisting it and cause it to be so loose. I suggest that you not to bend over and pick it up even if you drop something cause it might entice the Chinese to hack your azz.

      May 24, 2014 at 8:05 pm | Reply
      • Marine5484

        Thank you, Maersk, for telling that ignorant fool above what's what. Evidently, NATO – National Security never completed grade school. His screen name says it all!

        May 24, 2014 at 8:58 pm |
  8. NATO alliance - not China

    Our NATO alliance is priority – not China.

    May 25, 2014 at 6:20 am | Reply
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