Inside the Ring - Bill Gertz, Pentagon News - Washington Times
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Inside the Ring

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"Today we are the most powerful military in the world and find ourselves in a competition among great powers," said Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis. This week he issued a memorandum to the military that emphasized the need for discipline and lethality. "We must have better individual and unit discipline than our enemies," Mr. Mattis said. (Associated Press)

China's Ukrainian jet engines

China has deployed one aircraft carrier and has plans for at least three more of the strategic power projection platforms as part of Beijing's large-scale military buildup.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, California Democrat said the FBI notified her five years ago that a staff member was "potentially being sought out by the Chinese government to provide information." (Associated Press/File)

China targeted Feinstein

China's intelligence service sought to recruit a Chinese-American staff member for Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a lawmaker who had access to the most sensitive U.S. secrets, but Beijing gained no secrets in the case.

John Rood, undersecretary of defense for policy, told a security conference in Colorado last week that space is increasingly contested by adversaries that could cripple the United States in attacks on satellites. (Associated Press/File)

Pentagon policy chief on space force

Undersecretary of Defense for Policy John Rood recently previewed the Pentagon's plan to answer President Trump's call to create a space force as a separate branch of the military.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis met with Chinese President Xi Jinping last month in Beijing, where he revealed some of his views about the People's Liberation Army's military training and experience. (Associated Press/File)

Mattis on the Chinese military

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is considered a warrior scholar steeped in military history. His views on the Chinese military, however, are not widely known and remain hidden -- despite several on-the-record and off-the-record meetings with reporters during his trip to Beijing last month for talks with Chinese military leaders and President Xi Jinping.

Libyan National Army forces, under the leadership of Maj. Gen. Khalifah Haftar, is pushing for a Russian military presence in eastern Libya. (The Washington Times/File)

Russia moving into Libya

U.S. intelligence agencies are closely monitoring Russian military activities in Libya for signs that Moscow may soon build a military base in the divided North African state.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe met last week in Beijing. The delegation traveling on the E-4B plane with Mr. Mattis had to take extraordinary security precautions. (Associated Press)

China electronic spying threat

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis' recent visit to China highlighted the security dangers posed by sophisticated Chinese electronic spying in the capital of Beijing.

Fort Greely, Alaska, this week, home of the Pentagon's ground-based interceptor missile defense system. (Associated Press/File)

Missile defenses still ready for North Korea

Alaska-based interceptor missiles capable of knocking out long-range North Korean missiles remain at a high state of readiness despite the apparent reduction in tensions with Pyongyang following the recent summit between President Trump and Kim Jong-un.

North Korea on summit

A review of North Korean state media provides key insights about Pyongyang's approach to the issue of denuclearization.

Mike Pompeo, President Trump's secretary of state, directed much of the activities leading up to the summit. (Associated Press)

Trump's A-team

Before leaving Singapore on Air Force One, President Trumpp credited some of the success for the historic meeting to the work done by his new team of foreign policy and national security advisers.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently testified to Congress about the company's data privacy policies. Facebook reportedly acknowledged that it shared user data with several Chinese handset manufacturers, including Huawei, a company flagged by U.S. intelligence officials as a national security threat, Lenovo, Oppo and TCL. (Associated Press/File)

Facebook and Lenovo

Social media giant Facebook is under fire for sharing data with four Chinese electronics companies that critics say pose security and privacy risks for Americans' data.

The North Koreans have selectively modernized their 1 million-troop military and regard nuclear weapons as the most effective way to prevent an attack from the United States. (Associated Press/File)

North Korea unlikely to give up nukes

A Pentagon report to Congress warns that North Korea will not easily give up its nuclear arms since the weapons are viewed as a prime guarantor keeping the Kim Jong-un regime in power.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says America's has two fundamental sources of power: the power of inspiration and the power of intimidation. (Associated Press/File)

Mattis on strategy

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the recently completed U.S. defense strategy, the first in 10 years, will be used to guide the revamping of the military during the Trump administration.

"They continue their malign activities across the region" said Defense Secretary James N. Mattis during a Senate hearing on Wednesday about Iran. (Associated Press)

Ex-CIA officer indicted as Chinese spy

A federal grand jury in Virginia has indicted former CIA operations officer Jerry Chun Shing Lee for conspiracy to spy for China, in a case that has been under investigation for more than six years.

The 350,000 Chinese students in the U.S. "are here legitimately and doing great research and helping the global economy," said Bill Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, but others are used as tools to facilitate nefarious activity. (Associated Press/File)

China using students as spies

A senior U.S. counterintelligence official recently said publicly what many officials and experts have been warning privately for years: China is using its large student population in the United States to spy.

John Rood, undersecretary of defense for policy, told a security conference in Colorado last week that space is increasingly contested by adversaries that could cripple the United States in attacks on satellites. (Associated Press/File)

Pentagon: Missile threats increasing

Senior Pentagon and military officials this week outlined the growing array of missile threats facing the United States from China, Russia and other states, including maneuvering hypersonic weapons.

"We must normalize space and cyberspace as war fighting domains," said Gen. John E. Hyten, the head of Strategic Command during a hearing. (Associated Press)

Russia tests ASAT missile

Russia has conducted a flight test of a new anti-satellite missile in what Pentagon officials say is a step in advancing Moscow's space warfare capabilities.

China cyber spy chief revealed

The activities of one of China's cyber spymasters has been revealed for the first time in a government report on Beijing's unfair trade practices made public last week.