tv Pentagon 2019 Report on China CSPAN May 6, 2019 1:23am-2:02am EDT
the negotiations concerning north korea's nuclear program. later, senator tammy duckworth of illinois talks about u.s. policy in iraq at the center for strategic and international studies. on c-span2, a panel of c service chiefs on the challenges they face on land, sea, and in the year. later, remarks by admiral john richardson, chief of naval operations. the senate devils in at 3:00 p.m. eastern to continue work on executive and judicial nominations. on c-span3, we returned to the naval leagues sea, air, and space exploration for a discussion on international day leadership. now pentagon officials briefed reporters about the findings in a 2019 report to congress on military and security developments in china and the country's efforts to become a military power. this is about 40 minutes.
>> thank you. good morning. yesterday, the department of defense submitted our annual report to congress, which we refer to as the china military power report. this report is our authoritative statement on how we view developments in the chinese military as well as how that integrates within their overall strategy. of course, this relates to what we do here at the department of defense and our implementation of our national defense strategy, which states that the united states will compete from a position of strength while encouraging china to cooperate with the united states on security issues where our align.ts a few things to comment about the report -- first of all, with respect to some of the military development's we continue to see that china seeks to erode u.s. military advantages, and seek to gain and maintain influence, and it backs these ambitions with significant resourcing, which translates into real capabilities and capacities.
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. ofe of these specific areas modernization -- china continues to grow its inventory of the 26 intermediate range ballistic missiles, capable of conducting conventional and nuclear precision strikes against targets -- both ground and naval targets in the western pacific and indian ocean. china has begun construction of its second to mystically built aircraft carrier in 2018. their first mystically built aircraft carrier will likely join the fleet's calendar year. of course, these carriers fall a foreign acquired carrier. in 2017 and 2018, china launched its missile cruisers as well as
having several more under construction. we expect it will enter operational service this calendar year. bes cruiser class will china's premier carrier escort for bluewater operations carrying an array of long-range antiship cruise missiles. they also noted at the airshow this year in november, the pla air force conducted a demonstration of its j-20 fighter, fifth generation most modern fighter. equally important to the equipment, china in 2018 forished a new outline training and evaluation, and this publication emphasizes realistic and joint training across all warfare domains and the pla to prepare for conflict aimed at "strong military opponents." there also continues to be emphasis on civil military integration.
under the civil military integration initiative, chinese leaders emphasize the civilian area of the economy to achieve and achieveciencies growth. our report also talks about china -- specific efforts targeting such areas of aviation technologies and anti-submarine warfare technologies. we also see china continue to andue global access .ncrease its global footprint alongside its military modernization, they seek to have the ability to affect security along china's periphery and beyond. we believe china will seek to establish additional military bases overseas as well as points for access. first reporting and 2018
indicated china sought to expand its military basing and access in the middle east, south east asia, and the western pacific. regarding some strategic developments -- it is important to note that all these in a larger occur context. chinese leaders are leveraging their growing diplomatic, economic, as well as their military clout to secure china's status as a great power and with the aim of becoming a preeminent power in the end of pacific. in 2018, china continued to implement long-range state directed planning such as made in china 2025. challenging exporting nations support chinese development. they are also leveraging the one built one role -- one built, one road initiative to shape other countries' interest so they align with china's. after noticing the made in 2025 and one belt, one road have
caused concern, china's leaders have softened their rhetoric and have sought to rebrand to some extent, but the fundamental goals of these programs have not changed. as our report describes, china conducts influence operations. we have a special section of the report that addresses that, targeting media, culture, business, academia, and policy the united states and other countries. it is also important to note, as our report does, that last year, partyinese communist military commission took control of the people's armed police, the primary force for internal security and, of course, our concerns are significant when it comes to the ongoing repression in china. with respect to china's approach to some regional disputes, we are concerned china's leaders continue to take actions that
the road the rule of order and that they are willing to accept friction to pursue those interests. toy employ tactics designed fall short of armed conflict and accomplish objectives and goals along its periphery in a so-called gray zone approach. and 2018, china continued its militarization in the south been widelyand has reported place anti-cruise ship missiles on some of the outposts in the spratly islands. madeviolated a 2015 pledge by general secretary xi jinping in the rose garden of the white house when he stated china does not intend to pursue militarization of the spratly islands. china also continues to use coercive economic measures, it's economic tools as well as military tools to mitigate
opposition from other countries. in 2018, china used economic coercion by reducing overseas trade and tourism in an effort to influence political institutions in countries and oceana.- in with respect to taiwan, china continues to incorporate strategies of both persuasion and coercion and is destabilizing not only to taiwan but to the entire region. ,owing to chinese pressure several countries switched diplomatic relations from taipei to beijing. they seek to isolate taiwan by stripping away diplomatic allies. it has also applied economic pressure by cutting tourism and economic investment and seeks to undermine democracy in taiwan by meddling in its elections. while china publicly advocates for peaceful unification, china has never renounced the use of
military force and continues to apply pressure through its posture, it's increasingly provocative exercises. while the national defense strategy emphasizes competition, we certainly do not seek conflict with china, and it does not preclude cooperation where interests online. pursue aue to result-oriented relationship between our countries, and it is an important part of our regional strategy to have stable relations with china and a relationship which mitigates the risk of incident or accident. this all sets a framework in which we are operating and as i said up front, our national defense strategy is aimed at dealing with these challenges. you are familiar with the pillars of our strategy, seeking to increase the value of the joint force, strengthening partners and allies and reforming the business practices
of the department of defense. much of that will put us on a better posture to compete effectively and deal with these challenges. with that, i look forward to your questions. yeah? get your wanted to sort of more detailed assessment on cyber activities. the u.s. has for a number of takingow talked about steps to try to mitigate some of this. is it getting worse? are any of the actions you been taking having any impact at all? to stopwhat can you do the effects on technology stealing? >> i would say the threat and the challenge is persistent. the chinese remain aggressive in their use of cyber. what has changed is our level of awareness and the steps we are taking to reduce our own full abilities and working with partners and allies to do the same. >> tune of quick questions. you mentioned that the chinese were using concentration camps.
can you explain a you used the terminology? and in taiwan, there has been an increase of the pace of u.s. warships through the taiwan strait. behind frame what is that? >> on the first point, the detention camps, given what we understand to be the magnitude least oneention, at million, but likely closer to 3 out of aitizens population of about 10 million, so a very significant portion of the population. what is happening there, what the goals are of the chinese government and their own public very is make that a think appropriate description. with respect to taiwan, the taiwan strait is international water. we transit it as we see fit. the chinese transit it as well and we do not object because it
is international water for the use of all seafaring nations, so we will continue to do that as we see necessary and expect other countries to do the same as it is international water. >> can you explain in what area haveina's military they made the most gains? have had a very aggressive modernization effort that goes back at least two decades. they have made progress in a number of areas. their projection through ballistic and cruise missiles is an area they have made tremendous progress and they continue to develop enhanced capabilities in those areas, but it would not be limited to that. particularly in new domains, they have invested a lot in cyber, space, hypersonic's, ai, so we are seeing a very aggressive modernization effort backed by resourcing. for almost two decades, they have had near double-digit defensen their official budget. their defense budget might
actually be higher than that. this is a national effort that is resourced very well, and is , as the at then being report says, the preeminent power in the pacific. >> joe biden says china is not a competitor of the united they do. what is your response? >> i was stick with the language in our national security strategy and national defense strategy which identifies china as a strategic imperative. >> can you talk about the pla presence integer to stand and -- it influences afghanistan the pla presence in touch it can stand -- the pla presence in tajjikikistan. >> i think they have a variety of interest that may include afghanistan, but i think they have broader interests in central asia. i know the russians are also paying attention and that could be a source of some friction there. we certainly do not begrudge our friends and partners in central
asia for wanting a relationship with china, but we would suggest they keep an eye on what china's ambitions actually are and what kind of influence they are trying to exert given increased access. is the chinese military strategy to delete the united states conventionally or do they believe they would have to use nuclear weapons to do that? >> i think as our report outlines, the chinese strategy is to supplant the united states and become the preeminent power in the pacific. known interests, in particular potential contingencies. east china sea, taiwan, south china sea, that they prepare for as well as on their land borders. we think they are directing their efforts at trying to prevail in those known contingencies, and that would likely involve dealing with the united states in some form, given our commitments in the region.
expect china to maybeue militarizing islands inhe south china sea, and what, if anything, can the u.s. do about it? >> i don't know what steps china will take beyond what they have already done. athink those steps militarizing the outposts are designed with a certain aim, and they seek to operationalize and illegal expense of sovereignty we do about it is we fly, sale, and operate were international law allows. we are increasingly joined by other countries to make sure no one country can change international law. in other words, making the havetment that the chinese made as insignificant as possible, particularly where their core goal is aimed at. we also do capacity building in the region so that our partners
and allies have their own capability to monitor their theitory that abuts against disputed territories in the south china sea. what we expect china will see as this unfolds is they have taken steps that are destabilizing and in response getting more action from the united states, joined by more and more countries in terms of presence and absence in the south china sea and more capable maritime asian nations to deal with maritime security, and if they continue, potentially more cost in position. position -- more cost imposition. had any effect so far? >> the effect is the fundamental nature of the south china sea has not changed.
the effect that the chinese seek, which is operationalizing this illegal expense sovereignty claim, has not been achieved. >> with regard to taiwan and the increased pressure, what can the u.s. due to apply more substantial support to taiwan? in general, have the u.s.-china trade talks affected this at all? >> what we can do to support taiwan is faithful and of the act that has many things including the defenses.hreat we also maintain the capacity to resist force, should our national command authority ask us to do so. our ownat our planning, posture, our own capability. we do a number of things to assist taiwan in the defense service area as well. we don't just sell them weapons
that are required for the defense. we support training and professionalization of the military, looking at reserve forces, etc. we will continue faithful and --itation of the tra faithful implementation of the tra. >> the f-16 sale, what trends in , modernization, tactical, or intent, justify or provide a rationale or the sale of additional new f-16's? where does that stand in terms of the requirement to scrub going on? >> i did not comment on the possibleon tanks and sale of additional f-16's because we do not comment on potential sales that are still under consideration, but i think the threat environment is evolving. as i mentioned, the report talks about the possibility of the g20 fighter coming online in 2019. that is a fifth-generation
fighter. the efforts to diplomatically, politically, economically isolate taiwan suggest they need a boost in their own confidence and need to see the support of the united states and other friends and partners, but the threat is clear and evolving. air threat, surface, submarine threat. china's own articulation of its goals to become a world-class military by 2049 also speaks to some of their ambitions associated with a capability to affect the taiwan scenario, should their leaders ask them to do so. we monitor that and look at the capabilities that would be appropriate for taiwan's defense. said that china has fielded an anti-satellite missile unit to an operational chinese unit. i did not see that mentioned anywhere in your report. can you square the circle? >> we do talk about china's space development and interests. i will not talk about a specific
milestone. we have obviously seen them conduct a test in the past, and anti-satellite test, which resulted in the space debris we are still all living with. i don't want to talk about a specific milestone, but we do address in the report china's interest in space and their modernization efforts and we know they have a demonstrated capability in the past. >> economic colonization has been raised as a concern by the pentagon broadly when it comes to china over the last several months. the air district to greenland comes to mind as a potential example. what about partners who are perhaps economically in a position where they need financial help? the united states assisted in that case but probably cannot in every case. >> i think the track record is becoming more and more clear with china's predatory economics. i guess the message is buyer beware if you have these
development needs and china is offering solutions. read the fine print, make sure you understand the terms of the deal and make sure you understand the track record that has resulted in countries losing to some degree sovereign control because they are indebted to china and find themselves under enormous chinese pressure and influence. we can offer alternatives. we can also offer alternatives alongside partners and allies, so in many cases, development assistance can be produced not only from the united states, but u.s.-japan-australia solutions, etc. i don't think we are as concerned with the dollar for dollar side-by-side comparison with china because what we offer ,ur clean, transparent scandal-free approaches that benefit the people of the recipient countries, not just a few of the corrupt elite, so we need to brand and market that in a way that countries understand the choice is not just one
potential source of financing versus another. it is a qualitatively different approach that benefits their country a lot more. >> there's tension between u.s. that the defense department wants to bring into the defense industrial base, and those firms desire that access to the chinese market. can you tell us what the department's message is for the companies about doing business in china? what do you have to say to those companies? awareness a level of for any u.s. company doing business in china and depending on the sector, where the vulnerabilities might be and anuld those countries have interest in being part of the united states defense industrial base, understand there may be potential trade-offs. starting from a position of awareness gives private companies who can make their own decisions the ability to balance the pros and cons. we are very concerned about
being vulnerable and closing those gaps. it has been a focus of this department and at some point, there might be discreet decision points that companies have to make, but we start from a position of wanting to have a dialogue and spreading the awareness and making sure that we understand and the companies understand what those trade-offs may be in the future. >> [inaudible] about the arctic and what that means specifically about the possibility for submarines in .hat region >> the report has two special topics -- influence operations and the arctic, and we have seen a lot of recent activity on the part of the chinese to suggest growing interest on their part in the arctic. they have released their own policy. they became an observer to the arctic council. they refer to themselves to the near arctic state. they have announced a polar silk road. they are embarking on the construction of new icebreakers, so it looks like there is a lot
of ambition, and i think it's probably multifaceted in terms of their objectives, potential access to resources, shipping routes, but you mentioned an area that we will watch and if that becomes an access point for safe harbor for strategic assets such as ballistic missile carrying submarines. it is a possibility in the future and one we will watch very closely. >> can you tell us what efforts are ongoing to potentially bring china into some kind of new arms control pact? 's and otherd irbm types of cruise missiles, so what efforts are being pursued and what progress has been made? theur conversation at department of defense has largely been about the destabilizing nature of china's developments and particularly, their deployments. if you look at how they are postured with their ballistic
and cruise missiles, there is a significant percentage -- admiral harris i think used to -- wheref systems focused mostly on the destabilizing nature of those deployments, how we can adapt that environment. we will work with our interagency colleagues at the state department and white house if there is an interest in pursuing arms control with the chinese. the report highlights china as the world's fastest-growing with 10 billion, particularly to the middle east. concernedcifically about chinese growing sales in the middle east and how that could affect ties when you look at access or potentially crowding out the market for u.s. supplies that are treaty limited ?
>> i think our concerns would be multiple concerns. i think you have mentioned some of them. potentially a tool for them to develop closer defense and military ties, potentially access.re obviously, in some instances, there's a competitive aspect to it. we have, of course, a process through which we review foreign foreign military financing, which is pretty rigorous and incorporates a factors.iety of china is less disciplined, so there is a proliferation risk as well to regimes that we would regard as not necessarily so there's a variety of things. i think the report just notes it as a point of fact and something we will continue to watch. >> as trade talks continue and given the u.s. deficit financed by the chinese and the ambitions
you have developed in the south i'm wondering in your calculus, how is the u.s. set to compete with china? given our own bank account? >> we do talk about the government approach and be strategy to the china challenge. we are focused on defense aspects of that and leave it to our interagency partners to deal with trade issues and economic issues. i think it is a different environment than when we have competed in the past with other countries or had adversaries in have closeat we do economic ties and are very integrated, so we will have to take that into account as we pursue this competition. by the way, when we talk about confrontation, we do not say enemy. we do not say adversary. our expectation is we can compete and not spiral into a conflict or any kind of military
confrontation, so we have an expectation that we can address the trade imbalances and unfair trade practices while we're competing in the security sphere . china'sou discuss presence in the arctic? icebreakers, boats, research stations it has now? into some getting very specifics i may have to return to you on, but they are investing in all of those areas, including the large icebreaker they have. one in the fleet that is operational and i believe they have two more under construction, but i want to check that fact and the smaller ice capable patrol craft. as a general matter, it is an area of interest of theirs that we have seen them pursued through resourcing and through their activities including aslomatic activities such joining the arctic council as an observer. again, we think they have
multifaceted objectives. resources, commercial routes, potential strategic interests, but the very specific numbers i can get back to you on. >> how are we adjusting to china increasingly using its coast guard and maritime militia to interfere with u.s. naval operations? interested in the color of the whole than the activity and the action. what we are most interested in is china behaving in a manner that is respectful of international law and norms and behaving in a manner that is not destabilizing and is more constructive, so we are less interested -- again, if its coast guard maritime militia or classic navy, if the design is to infringe upon sovereignty of provoke withry, to the objective of creating some sort of tension that results in a favorable outcome for them -- any of that is more concerned than the color of the whole.
mentioned china has used force against taiwan. taiwan, willdes u.s. military help? >> our law says any threat to taiwan is -- and it is a broad definition of threat to include economic threats, blockade, etc. -- would be regarded with grave concern in the united states and the president would consult with the congress on an appropriate response. i think our history is clear -- when taiwan has been threatened, the u.s. has responded in an appropriate manner to help support taiwan. in the future, it could be well expected that we would want to see taiwan the able to preserve its status free from coercion, but the specific response would be a product of that confrontation as our law directs us to do in that event.
>> he said china's stated goal is to become a world-class military power. u.s. is the definition of a world class military power, china is still decades behind? >> i think as our report points out, they have had substantial , so iss in niche areas think they have areas of excellence such as ballistic and cruise missiles. there's areas where they are making rapid progress -- cyber and space. i think the report also suggests where they do need more work and we do look at that as a department, there are things that we do in terms of training, in terms of sophisticated integration of command and control and intelligence, that they are not quite there yet. the training is not as complex as ours.
that they would need to work on in order to achieve that status, but there are certainly areas where they have made a lot of progress that i would describe as niche areas of excellence. isone area you mentioned hypersonic. >> well, our report talks about it. we know that they have tested a hypersonic live vehicle. it is certainly something we are concerned about here in our budget request for this year, for example, talks about the defend againsto potential developments by other countries but invest our own research and development in those areas, so it is definitely something we are tracking and trying to look out for. >> [inaudible] become operational? >> i don't have an estimate. >> at what point will the chinese have as many advanced warships and submarines and
large bomb ships as the united dates? >> in some instances, it would not be difficult for them to exceed, but when you talk about the number of advanced -- so if you are about fifth-generation fighters versus fourth or you talk about the new class of guided missile cruiser that has come online versus older platforms, i'm not sure i can give you a precise answer. i think our hope is through our own modernization, we maintain a competitive edge. that is what the first pillar of our defense strategy is all about. i would also note the war fighting environment is changing. we talk about that in our national defense strategy. our investment in some of these may not be such a simple calculus in the future of how many platforms one size has -- one side has or the other comments about maintaining the technological edge we are committed to. >> dust china have a nuclear
triad? you suggested in your report that the j class is operational. have they done deterrence patrol, and is it accurate to say china is one of the nations on earth with an operational nuclear triad? >> i don't think i would be prepared to use those words, but we're certainly tracking what they are doing with the ballistic missile carrying submarine. it looks as though without getting specific about the timeline, that they are headed in that direction. >> what direction? >> toward having capable delivery systems in those three domains. to have a true triad involved. stay away from a specific point in time, but it's definitely something they are headed towards. said the color of the whole of the chinese ships does not matter as much as the activity. does that mean the u.s. military considers chinese coast guard and chinese people maritime militia to be military vessels?
if so, is it considered to be so at all times or is there a ? reshold one has to cross >> as i said, it depends on the activity with respect to how we regard them. if they are engaged in infringement on another country's sovereignty, particularly our allies, then we would treat them differently than if they were doing what we regard as more normal coast guard activities or we do not necessarily have the equivalent of a maritime militia, but peaceful activities. i will leave it at the statement that i made -- we are more concerned about the activity in action rather than the color of the whole. >> china has a significant involvement in venezuela. there are significant matters about china's involvement the department is concerned with. how is the department looking to counter such involvement? >> i think i will leave the ourtions to venezuela to
state department and white house and southern command, which i know the secretary just spoke to a group just before this session, so i will leave it at that. >> you mentioned cost for the .ilitarization of the effort do you see that continuing, that down the road china will not be invited to participate this year? there'sioned the cost, some other cap of cost imminent. >> what i meant in that remark is that cost him position is sort of part of the toolkit. i don't know that there are any plans to invite china to the next session, but in the toolkit, we can not only do the presence operations, capacity and it does not necessarily have to be on point. china does something in the south china sea, we do something in the south china sea. cost him position -- cost
imposition can be something else as long as we are doing it in a way they understand. so much.you if there are follow-up questions we did not get to, someone was not called on, please follow up with me after. >> monday night on "the communicators, we talk about the challenges facing small and .edium-sized telecoms companies >> when we think of other issues in washington such as open internet or net neutrality, that debate is important to smaller companies because it has a traumatic impact on the ability of our members to obtain financing to be able to provide more broadband in smaller communities. >> it is becoming more and more difficult for an operator of our size to compete effectively in
the video business, given the ever increasing content costs. >> watch "the communicators" monday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span2. >> now, a house appropriations subcommittee hearing on the agency preparations for the 2020 census and the legality of a citizenship question on the form. this runs two hours.