According to US officials, in recent years, there have been multiple instances in which individuals from China, posing as tourists but suspected of spying, have undertaken various deliberate attempts to gain access to military installations located within the sprawling state adorned with strategically vital bases.
One of the soldiers told USA Today: “During an incident at Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks, a vehicle carrying Chinese nationals bypassed a security checkpoint and passed it.” Following the incident, the vehicle was intercepted and a subsequent search revealed the presence of a drone inside the vehicle. The occupants of the vehicle assured that they were tourists who had accidentally lost their way.
Furthermore, the official added, numerous encounters involving Chinese visitors trying to gain access to US military bases in Alaska have been attributed to innocent mistakes by foreign tourists who were interested in witnessing the Northern Lights phenomenon and exploring other attractions in the region. However, a different narrative emerges in certain cases where attempts to enter these military installations appear to be investigative, with the goal of gathering intelligence on US military capabilities in Alaska. Multiple soldiers, who are aware of these incidents but lack authorization to release the details publicly, have corroborated this observation. Lastly, the soldier added: “Not all apparent tourists in Alaska are tourists; some are foreign spies.”
Based on constant warnings from FBI Director Christopher Wray, concerns are being raised regarding Chinese government-backed espionage activities. Wray blames China’s communist leaders rather than its citizens or Chinese Americans. In particular, Wray has revealed that the FBI launches a new investigation related to Chinese government-sponsored espionage approximately every 12 hours.
He also added: “There is no doubt that the greatest long-term threat to our nation’s ideas, our economic security, and our national security is the one posed by the Chinese communist government.”
According to David Deptula, a retired Air Force three-star general who served as the service’s top intelligence officer, a major aspect of the intrusions into US military bases during these incidents. This observation highlights a key concern regarding the potential implications of materials or objects that may be left behind by unauthorized persons gaining access to these military installations.
He also added that “spies infiltrating US military bases could leave sensors capable of picking up sensitive communications.”