China is famously hungry for resources and knowledge of all kinds – but military high technology whets the country’s billion-man appetite more than anything else.

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China is famously hungry for resources and knowledge of all kinds – but military high technology whets the country’s billion-man appetite more than anything else.

New weapon systems, though, are notoriously hard to obtain: they’re expensive to buy and even more expensive, never mind slow, to develop yourself. In China’s case, a US and European arms embargo dating back to the Tiananmen Square massacre further limits the options, forcing the Chinese to be creative about where their new military technology comes from. The upshot is that they buy it, they build it and, whenever they can, they steal it.

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