Chinese Spy Balloon Incident Signals War Preparations: Cybersecurity Expert

Chinese Spy Balloon Incident Signals War Preparations: Cybersecurity Expert
(Left) The Chinese balloon drifts to the ocean after being shot down off the coast in Surfside Beach, S.C., on Feb. 4, 2023. (Right) The aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson participates in a group sail during the Rim of the Pacific exercise off the coast of Hawaii, on July 26, 2018. (Randall Hill/Reuters; Petty Officer 1st Class Arthurgwain L. Marquez/U.S. Navy via AP)
Tiffany Meier

Cybersecurity expert Casey Fleming said the Chinese spy balloon incident signals that China’s communist regime is preparing for war with the United States.

Fleming, CEO of intelligence and security strategy firm BlackOps Partners, raised concern about the four objects shot down by the Pentagon early this month, including the spy balloon, and claimed that they all come from China.

However, speaking at a Feb. 14 press conference, National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby said the unidentified objects that were downed in Alaska, the Yukon, and over Lake Huron were not tied to spying efforts, and could just be balloons “tied to some commercial or benign purpose.”

Pentagon officials earlier said that the three unidentified objects posed no security threats but have not disclosed their origins.

“So those balloons are following the jetstream. And you can absolutely guess where they’re coming from. They’re all coming from virtually the same place,” Fleming said in an interview on the “China in Focus” program on NTD, a sister media outlet of The Epoch Times, which aired on Feb. 14.

“And they’re [China] launching these balloons ... with our counterintelligence saying that it’s to basically create fear in the American people, and so on,” he added.

These actions signal that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is preparing for war with the United States, according to Fleming.

“You have to understand what your adversary is up to. To our older generations, this is what World War II looked like at the time. And this is what World War III looks like for us. It’s based on technology, building fear, psychologic, psychological warfare,” he said.

“These balloons are today’s Pearl Harbor moment, it’s very serious. ... For those of us who work in counterintelligence, I’ve seen this all day, every day for decades of what’s going on under the scenes in the CCP’s unrestricted warfare strategy to eliminate and destroy the United States and the free world,” he added.

Weaponized Tools

Furthermore, Fleming called out TikTok, Shein, and Temu—application tools that the CCP has weaponized to undermine and subvert the United States.
The U.S. head office of TikTok in Culver City, Calif., on Sept. 15, 2020. (Mike Blake/Reuters)
The U.S. head office of TikTok in Culver City, Calif., on Sept. 15, 2020. (Mike Blake/Reuters)

“Tiktok in the United States is attacking everything to destroy everything that holds society together,” he said.

“TikTok—that’s a weaponized app in the hands of every child. It’s meant to psychologically weaken the children, weaken values, weaken their thought processes, take them out of critical thinking, and basically just lower their morals and their standards.”

Meanwhile, in China, TikTok is “a platform that’s used for excellence, it’s a platform to challenge people to do better in school and treat your elders and family with values and all those things that hold society together,” he added.

“Then you’ve got Shein, which is a knockoff clothing line that a lot of females and males are using in the United States and the free world,” Fleming said.

Shein has operation centers in major global markets, including Singapore, China, and the United States, and is now serving clients in over 150 countries, according to its website.

Fleming called Temu the “Amazon killer,” which “intended to completely take Amazon out of business–move all of that revenue to China.

“They are revenue from ... whatever that is to power our economy, our jobs, and our schools and our hospitals, and our national security,” he said.

Temu, an online marketplace, was founded in Boston in 2022 by PDD Holdings Inc., which also operates Pinduoduo in China.
“The design of the Chinese Communist Party is to pull these industries, these companies ... out of the United States, take them over to China, and make us much weaker financially. From an economic standpoint, you’re also seeing this thing called ‘reshoring,’” he said.

Decoupling From China

To push back the threats posed by the Chinese regime, Fleming urged Americans to stop buying Chinese products.

“Start demanding ‘Made in America’ and ‘Made in the free world’ [from] our partners, Canada, Mexico, and so on,” he said.

“You have to be aware of where you’re spending your money. Money is power, and money drives the Chinese economy, as well as the U.S. economy, and your hands are being forced, whether you know it or not.”

Decoupling from China could cause “discomfort as there will be higher prices,” he noted.

“We’re very comfortable today. We’re very complicit today and complacent. But the pain is on its way. And it’s to absorb some pain today, to maybe stave off a much greater pain in the future.”

Andrew Thornebrooke contributed to this report.