Pentagon: China Expanding Military Reach from South China Sea to Arctic Circle

Anti-Missile Technology Is the Key to Global Dominance in the 21st Century

China could use force to push Taiwan into unification or into unification dialogue, the United States Department of Defense said in its annual military report, which was issued Thursday.

"Our 2019 report finds that in the coming decades, China seeks to become both prosperous and powerful, and the report notes that China has a stated goal of becoming a world class military by 2049", he said.

The 2018 National Defense Strategy listed China as a competitor and a threat for its expanding influence in the Pacific and militarization of islands and reefs in the South China Sea.

Shortly after, however, Italy became the first major Western country to support the BRI, which stipulates promoting investment in projects that would link dozens of countries across Africa, Asia, and Europe through the creation of infrastructure networks similar in objective to the ancient Silk Road trading routes. "The United States will adapt its forces, posture, investments, and operational concepts to ensure it retains the ability to defend the homeland, deter aggression, protect our allies and partners, and preserve regional peace, prosperity, and freedom", the report said.

Still, wary of provoking the USA, its allies or regional governments, Chinese leaders "employ tactics short of armed conflict to pursue China's strategic objectives through activities calculated to fall below the threshold of providing armed conflict", the report said. That included efforts to establish an aircraft carrier fleet, with the country's first domestically built vessel expected to join the PLA Navy this year, and the successful test of a hypersonic glide vehicle in August.

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It also details the growth in China's defence budget and its military capabilities, saying it has "nearly doubled during the past 10 years". China 4,182 total aircraft, 1,150 fighter aircraft, 629 multirole aircraft, 270 attack aircraft and 1,170 helicopters.

The Pentagon report also discussed Taiwan, a country China dubs as a renegade province.

China's J-20 fighter is part of a modernization effort that's been "closing the gap with Western air forces across a broad spectrum of capabilities, such as aircraft performance, command and control and electronic warfare", according to Defense Intelligence Agency report.

State Department officials are mum on whether Mr. Pompeo intends to directly confront China or Russian Federation in the speech at a multinational conference of the Arctic Council, but suggested during a background call with reporters that the secretary is most concerned about Beijing's expanding movements in the region.

The TRA was signed in April 1979 by then U.S. President Jimmy Carter, a few months after the U.S. switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing. As the CBC's Murray Brewster reports in this exclusive story, a Canadian military surveillance aircraft monitoring United Nations sanctions was harassed in global airspace off North Korea by the Chinese military - part of "a pattern of behaviour that's inappropriate", Canada's top military commander said Wednesday. "The natural conditions of the Arctic and their changes have a direct impact on China's climate system and ecological environment, and, in turn, on its economic interests in agriculture, forestry, fishery, marine industry, and other sectors". In January 2018, China published a strategy on creating a "Polar Silk Road" and has called itself a "Near-Arctic State". It also noted the possibility of limited missile strikes.

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