THIS is an interesting New Yorker article about cyber espionage. The reason for the 2001 plane crash and subsequent capture of monitoring hardware, software, and data by the Chinese is pretty awful and makes me despair as it seems like no one is competent anymore.
According to Seymour Hersh the daily monitoring by the US navy and airforce of the former Soviet Union were recommended to be cut back in autumn of 2000, but when it came due no one had the authority to make the change as "There was no leadership in the Defense Department, as both Democrats and Republicans waited for the Supreme Court to decide the fate of the Presidency."
'“So the system defaulted to the next target, which was China, and the surveillance flights there went from one every two weeks or so to something like one a day,” a former diplomat said. '
Although the "U.S. has long viewed China as a strategic military threat" what was essentially a mistake led to increased US air surveilance of China and aggressive Chinese fighter pilot actions as they sought to deter the unwelcome invasion of their airspace. A mid-air crash led to the compromising of US spying techniques, which meant that hundreds of millions of dollars would be required for their replacement, which was only done in 2008.
posted by - 1:03 PM