Tags: U.S. | Sanctions | Chinese | Airline

U.S. Sanctions Chinese Airline

Thursday, 07 September 2006 12:00 AM

The U.S. Treasury Department has imposed new sanctions against a Chinese army-owned company. According to Bush administration officials, the company has provided support to weapons proliferators. Great Wall Airlines Company Limited, a cargo airline owned jointly by a Singaporean and a Chinese army (People's Liberation Army, or PLA) company, has been designated by the U.S. Department of Treasury as an entity that has provided support to proliferators of weapons of mass destruction (WMD).

Under the designation, U.S. citizens are prohibited from all transactions with Great Wall Airlines, also known as Changcheng Hangkong. The Treasury ruling also freezes any assets Great Wall Airlines may have under U.S. jurisdiction.

The Bush administration did not give specific reasons for sanctioning Great Wall Airlines.

Great Wall Airlines is based in Shanghai and has a fleet of two Boeing B747-400 freighters on lease from Singapore Airlines Cargo. Great Wall Airlines suspended operations after the Treasury designation became effective because the Boeing Company, an American firm, can no longer provide it with technical assistance, parts or aeronautical charts.

Boeing has approached the Treasury Department for a license that would allow it to continue working with Great Wall Airlines, and the airline is appealing its listing by the Treasury Department. Prior to suspending operations, the airline was providing cargo service to Amsterdam, Singapore and the Indian cities of Chennai and Mumbai.

Great Wall Airlines began operations almost a week after the Treasury Department designated its parent company, the Chinese army-owned China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC), as having supplied Iran's military with missile-related and dual-use components. The Bush administration applied strict sanctions against Great Wall in 2005 for selling advanced missile technology to Iran. The State Department issued a notice, which stated in part that the Chinese firm would not be allowed to purchase sensitive U.S. technology including space systems, satellite technology and high-speed computer systems.

The Chinese missile shipments to Iran are violations of the Missile Treaty Control Regime (MTCR). Beijing has repeatedly pledged that it would abide by the MTCR.

Yet Great Wall Industries has visited the United States. The Chinese army company wanted U.S. space technology. Chinese officials from Great Wall Industries traveled to Nevada in July 2004 to visit Bigelow Aerospace, in an effort to set up a joint U.S.-China space venture.

According to an article published in Aviation Week and Space Technology, China Great Wall was greatly interested in Bigelow's inflatable space station.

China Great Wall managers "sounded out the company on the possible launch of Bigelow test or operational modules on Long March boosters or the in-orbit support of Nautilus by Shenzhou Chinese manned spacecraft." However, what few in the aerospace industry seem to be aware of is the fact that Great Wall is a major contributor to the Chinese nuclear-tipped ballistic missile force.

China Great Wall is well known inside U.S. intelligence circles. For example, a chart published by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) showed that China Great Wall is directly under the control of the Communist party State Council and the Chinese army through a special agency called the Commission on Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (COSTIND).

Commerce Department documents also show that "China Electronics Systems Engineering Company (CESEC), a subsidiary of the People's Liberation Army," actually owns China Great Wall Industry.

The U.S. government has previously sanctioned China Great Wall twice for selling advanced missile technology. Great Wall, along with nine other PLA-controlled companies, sold nuclear-tipped M-9 missiles to Pakistan. In response, Great Wall was banned in 1992 from purchasing U.S.-controlled technology, including space technology.

In 1994 the Clinton administration waived those sanctions, allowing Great Wall a free hand in obtaining U.S. missile and space technology. By 1996, Great Wall, COSTIND and several Chinese army firms had obtained a vast array of military space technology.

In addition, COSTIND played a key role in the Chinagate scandal, where political contributions from the Chinese army were linked to the Clinton White House relaxation of sanctions and export controls of advanced U.S. technology.

COSTIND General Shen Roujun was named as a direct participant in the 123 national security violations against Hughes. Hughes later pleaded guilty to all 123 violations.

According to a Hughes document sent in March 1995 to Clinton National Security Advisor Anthony Lake, "State Department control of satellites is not required for national security."

The Hughes document concluded that control over the export of a wide range of advanced U.S. satellite technology should be moved to the Commerce Department.

The U.S. technology sent by Clinton to China included the entire list of items sought by Hughes: anti-jam capability, advanced antennas, cross-links, baseband processing, encryption devices, radiation hardening, and perigee kick motors.

All of these technologies play key roles in military space and nuclear missile warfare.

In fact, the CEOs of Hughes, Loral and Lockheed all co-wrote a letter to Bill Clinton in October 1995, expressing their desire that the President "transfer all responsibility for commercial satellite export licensing to the Commerce Department."

The 1995 letter, signed by C. Michael Armstrong of Hughes, Bernard Schwartz of Loral and Daniel Tellep of Lockheed, states that "we understand you may soon be issuing an Executive Order intended to make further improvements to the process for reviewing export license applications."

"During a recent meeting involving Vice President Gore and representatives of the satellite industry discussing national/global information infrastructure, this was one of several issues raised. We clearly appreciate your administration's strong commitment to reforming the U.S. export control system, but we respectfully request your personal support for establishing the Commerce Department's jurisdiction over the export of all commercial communications satellites," states the letter from the three CEOs.

U.S. military anti-jamming satellite communications technology provided to the Chinese army after 1996 is now appearing in the latest Chinese military satellites.

According to the People's Daily online, China is scheduled to launch the Xinnuo 2 satellite. Xinnuo 2 is reportedly China's first large telecommunications satellite with an anti-jamming mechanism. The satellite will be launched by the Long March 3B spacecraft from the Xichang Launch Center at the end of October.

The satellite was examined and approved before leaving the production facility at the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (COSTIND).

Clearly, the Chinese army benefited from the Clinton and Gore years. The proof has transitioned from hard-to-read technical documents into real hardware. We can now see the fruits of war in space above us and on the ground inside Iranian missiles.

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The U.S. Treasury Department has imposed new sanctions against a Chinese army-owned company.According to Bush administration officials, the company has provided support to weapons proliferators. Great Wall Airlines Company Limited, a cargo airline owned jointly by a...
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Thursday, 07 September 2006 12:00 AM
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