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Lawmakers: U.S. helped China research weather balloons before balloon spying incident



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Members of the Select Committee sent a letter to Secretary Antony Blinken this week asking the Biden administration to sever the “Agreement Between the United States and the People’s Republic of China on Cooperation in Science and Technology.”

“In the letter, committee representatives cited reports that research partnerships between the U.S. and China organized under the Science and Technology Agreement have developed technology that could later be used against Americans” reports the Center Square.

The Science and Technology Agreement is set to expire on Aug. 27 if it is not renewed by the Biden administration. Among the partnerships is between the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and China’s Meteorological Administration. Under the STA’s authority, the groups worked to launch technologically advanced weather balloons to study the atmosphere in 2018.

“As you know, a few years later, the PRC used similar balloon technology to surveil U.S. military sites on U.S. territory,” representatives wrote in the letter. Chairman on the Select Committee Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., sent the letter to Blinken. Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., and eight other members of Congress also signed the letter.

Other reports explained the collaboration between the U.S. and China regarding sensitive agricultural technologies, some of which included “clear dual-use applications, such as […] techniques for analyzing satellite and drone imagery for irrigation management.”


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New documents show China trying to establish ‘satellite state’ in Caribbean



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China has been “exploiting a fragile security environment and taking advantage of the region’s need for economic investment to gain influence and advance its malign agenda” in a move that challenges U.S. hegemony in the Americas, U.S. Southern Command Comm. General Laura Richardson recently told Congress in written testimony.

The Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda, located about 220 miles from the U.S. Virgin Islands, is where China is planning to establish a special Chinese-run economic zone, according to documents reviewed by Newsweek

Just The News  reports that per the documents, the area will have its own customs and immigration facilities, a shipping port and it will even issue passports. China will also establish different kinds of businesses that will specialize in things from facial surgery to virology, the latter of which is closely associated with the research in Wuhan that is the suspected source of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A spokesperson for SOUTHCOM said that the U.S. military is “aware that China may use its commercial and diplomatic presence for military purposes. In Asia, Africa and the Middle East, China has already abused commercial agreements at host-country ports for military aims; our concern is they may do the same in this region.”

More than two-thirds of the 31 nations under SOUTHCOM’s responsibility have signed onto China’s belt-and-road initiative, which is Beijing’s program to lend money to developing nations to use for infrastructure projects, according to Just The News.

Several nations have had problems with repaying such loans, resulting in Beijing seizing the country’s assets. For example, Sri Lanka struggled to pay back Beijing in 2017 and instead signed off the rights to a strategic port, according to Foreign Policy.

Rep. Eric Burlison, R-Mo., a member of the House Oversight Committee proving China’s incursion inside the U.S. sphere of influence, told Just the News on Monday night that Beijing’s aggression in the Caribbean reminded him of the Soviet’s intervention in Fidel Castro’s Cuba more than a half century earlier.

“It reminds me of Russia’s involvement in Cuba, just 220 miles off the shore of the US Virgin Islands. We have Antigua. It used to be considered the United States back yard. Unfortunately, today, it’s China’s front yard,” Burlison told the “Just the News, No Noise television show. “And China has used the united front to enter into loan agreements and contracts to create trade zones within Antigua in order to gain a foothold into the Caribbean.”

“And this is just part of their efforts around the globe, whether it’s in African countries or Laos. They’re they’re creating a network to try to undermine the U.S. dollar and try to end run around some of our tariffs and other programs,” he warned.

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