China is mounting a serious effort to challenge US military superiority in air and space, forcing the Pentagon to seek new technologies and systems to stay ahead of its rapidly developing rival, Deputy Defence Secretary Robert Work said.
The Pentagon’s chief operating officer, speaking to a group of military and civilian aerospace experts, said China was quickly closing the technological gaps, developing radar-evading aircraft, advanced reconnaissance planes, sophisticated missiles and top-notch electronic warfare equipment.
While hoping for a constructive relationship with China, the Pentagon “cannot overlook the competitive aspects of our relationship, especially in the realm of military capabilities, an area in which China continues to improve at a very impressive rate”, he said.
Work made his remarks to the inaugural conference of the China Aerospace Studies Initiative, a partnership of the US Air Force and the RAND Corporation think-tank. The initiative aims to boost US research on China’s aerospace ambitions.
Work said the United States has relied on technological superiority for the past 25 years, but now “the margin of technological superiority upon which we have become so accustomed is steadily eroding”.
Full article: China challenging US military superiority in air, space, says senior Pentagon official (South China Morning Post)