The US Justice Department on Monday filed criminal charges against five Chinese army officers, claiming that they helped Chinese firms steal business information on US companies and that all of them came from Unit 61398 of the Chinese People's Liberation Army. Since February last year, the US government has been accusing the same unit of theft of US trade secrets.
The Department of Justice issued "wanted" posters for the officers with their photos. The Wall Street Journal stated in an article "the indictment may act instead as a public effort to name and shame the suspects."
The 48-page indictment providing details of the officers looks "real." Nevertheless, the specific country that made the allegations is the one that spies both home and abroad with the PRISM program of the National Security Agency (NSA), revealed by Edward Snowden
, former NSA contractor. Washington was condemned by international public opinion and therefore its pretentious accusation against Chinese army officers is ridiculous.
The US government's claims that Chinese army officers have gathered US business intelligence in an organized way are beyond our imagination. It's fresh to us that Chinese military and civil companies have such a close relationship.
Perhaps all countries believe the US is the No.1 intelligence power. It has been taking bold steps in cyber espionage, as was shown by Snowden. Washington has also helped the rest of the world comprehend the meaning of "intelligence superpower" by not only collecting overseas information but also playing the victim role.
The materials disclosed by Snowden showed that the US hacked into China's backbone networks, universities, government departments and other organs. And the White House still owes an apology to Beijing. Interpol should have ordered the arrest of designers and implementers of the PRISM program but they did not. Therefore the US is acting so shameless by posting photos of the five Chinese army officers.
It appears that Washington has mistaken its domestic law for a law applicable to the international community by directly indicting active-duty Chinese army officers. It has severely infringed their human rights. Despite the relatively weak awareness and ability of Chinese to safeguard their legal rights, the five officers should file a lawsuit against the US government for damaging their reputation. China should not tolerate the US' malignant accusation this time. In announcing the suspension of activities of the China-US Cyber Working Group, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
made the right move. But we should take further actions.
Beijing has published US computer attacks on China's networks, which, however, lack detailed information except figures. We should encourage organizations and individuals whose rights have been infringed to stand up and sue Washington. Regarding the issue of network security, the US is such a mincing rascal that we must stop developing any illusions about it.