China unveils new stealth fighter jet

China's J-31 stealth-fighter
China's J-31 stealth-fighter

A major move in the new global arms race with China showing off a new stealth fighter jet at the same time President Obama was visiting the country.

The video shows China’s J-31, a stealth-fighter.

“It can come in, as the U.S. has stealth-fighters, stealth-bombers, come in in a full-up radar environment and not be detected,” said Michael Swaine, Carnegie Endowment for Intl. Peace.

Analysts say this jet could be designed for mid-to-low-altitude attacks, and may be deployed from an aircraft carrier.

The J-31 looks stunningly like a late-model American stealth-fighter, the F-35.

“It’s been pretty clear and I think the U.S. government has been pretty clear in making its claims, which I have no reason to doubt, that Chinese hackers have been targeting defense contractors, U.S. government facilities and others,” said David Finkelstein, CNA Corp, China Director.

Several published reports say the Chinese got the blueprints for the F-35 through a cyber-assault on a contractor for Lockheed-Martin, and built their fighter-jet with the same specs.

The Chinese have denied that.

A Lockheed-Martin official told CNN, the Chinese didn’t get the crown jewels — the most sensitive information about the F-35.

China tested the J-31 right as President Obama was in Beijing for the Asia-Pacific Economic Conference (APEC).

It comes on the heels of China christening its first aircraft carrier, and sending ships to islands whose territory has long been disputed.

Analysts say this isn’t about confronting America militarily, but about reducing U.S. military influence in its neighborhood.

“What the Chinese military is trying to do is to be able to put their military out further from China, out into the Pacific, in the air, under the sea and on the sea, in order to deter others from coming too close to China,” said Finkelstein.

“It’s also about prestige. It’s also about the status of China. It’s also about using platforms like aircraft carriers to perform what’s called military operations other than war. Humanitarian relief, that kind of thing. The United States uses its aircraft carriers for that purpose quite a lot,” said Swaine.

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