According to a report, a high-ranking U.S. naval intelligence officer stated that the United States military believes Chinese President Xi Jinping might not have complete control over the aggressive tactics that his armed services habitually carry out against the United States and other countries in the Pacific.
Chinese forces utilize so-called “gray zone” methods such as risky intercepts to coerce and frighten opponents.
According to the report, the Office of Naval Intelligence commander, Rear Adm. Mike Studeman, stated that it is possible that Chinese President Xi Jinping and other members of the politburo of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) are not fully aware of all of their activities. But the fact is, the danger and frequency of such incidents have increased over the past few years.
As an example, according to Breaking Defense, Studeman said that Chinese Navy warships often harass U.S. Naval patrols when they are operating in the South China Sea. The United States regularly conducts maritime freedom operations in the South China Sea to strengthen international treaties that guarantee movement through the disputed waters.
According to the Pentagon, these “gray zone” tactics do not meet the requirements to be considered an act of war, but they are still used against targets. These tactics can include the manipulation of cyberspace, the economy, and information and the use of proxy forces.
According to comments by Australian Minister of Defense Richard Marles in 2022, a CCP fighter jet allegedly released little particles of aluminum that were drawn into an Australian P-8’s engine.
Reports show that in December of 2021, a Chinese fighter jet came perilously near a U.S. aircraft performing a reconnaissance mission over the South China Sea in international airspace. Beijing claimed the United States’ monitoring threatened China’s national security.
Rear Adm. Mike Studeman also noted that Chinese maritime militia ships have rammed and attacked fishing boats from the Philippines and Vietnam.