By Marwa Mahmoud
WASHINGTON -US intelligence community must urgently address the threat posed by China, a glaring need that has only become more apparent due to Beijing’s actions during the coronavirus pandemic, according to the summary of a highly classified report released by the House Intelligence Committee Wednesday.
The partially redacted 37-page report, states that the intelligence community has “not sufficiently adapted to a changing geopolitical and technological environment increasingly shaped by a rising China.”
In a statement Wednesday, Rep. Adam Schiff, the committee chairman, summarized the findings by saying “our nation’s intelligence agencies have a lot of work to do to fully address the challenge posed by China.”
The Trump administration has recently indicted several Chinese individuals and entities for alleged espionage and intellectual property theft — actions that are also highlighted in the committee report.
It notes that in 2019 alone, three former Intelligence Community officers were charged by US prosecutors and sentenced to prison “for delivering or seeking to deliver classified information” to China’s intelligence services.
Trump has adopted an aggressive posture toward Beijing
Trump has emphasized his administration’s hostile approach toward China as the central tenet of his re-election campaign, but that message has often been muddled by Beijing’s attempts to intervene in the upcoming presidential election that goes far beyond what the intelligence community has publicly said.
While the intelligence community has assessed that China prefers Trump to lose in November, officials have offered no indication, to date, that Beijing is acting on that preference in the same way as Russia, according to public statements issued by the intelligence community and sources familiar with the underlying evidence.
In order to ensure that the US can compete with China going forward, the intelligence community must provide policy-makers with information that helps them understand how and why the Communist Party’s leadership makes decisions, according to Schiff.
More broadly, the committee assessed that China’s intelligence services will continue to pose a formidable challenge to the US going forward and will require “equal parts ingenuity, humility, and vigilance to address.”