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China's growing military might: top 4 concerns for the Pentagon

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2. Use of space to thwart the US military

In 2012, China conducted 18 space launches to expand its intelligence and surveillance satellites.

At the same time, China is working quickly to “improve its capabilities to limit or prevent the use of space-based assets by adversaries during times of crisis or conflict,” according to the report.

Indeed, “PLA writings emphasize the necessity of ‘destroying, damaging, and interfering with the enemy’s reconnaissance ... and communications satellites,’ ” the DOD report notes, adding that such attacks would serve to “blind and deafen the enemy.”

The same PLA analysis also points out that “destroying or capturing satellites and other sensors ... will deprive an opponent of initiative on the battlefield and [make it difficult] for them to bring their precision-guided weapons into full play.”

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