The US and UK are increasingly lockstep in responding to China, including presenting a united front on the Huawei issue, and this was on full display during Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's visit and statement Tuesday morning from Downing Street alongside Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.
He lashed out at China's behavior related to Honk Kong, it's handling of coronavirus, as well as seeking to hack Western research on COVID-19 as "disgraceful". His explosive comments even targeted President Xi Jinping directly:
"On behalf of the American people I want to extend my condolences to the British people for your losses from this preventable pandemic.
This CPC exploitation of this disaster to further its own interests has been disgraceful and rather than helping the world, General Secretary Xi has shown the world the party's true face."
📺 | @SecPompeo doesn't mince his words in today's press conference with Dominic Raab. 👍— Leave.EU (@LeaveEUOfficial) July 21, 2020
COVID: "The CCP's 🇨🇳 exploitation of this disaster to further its own interests has been disgraceful. Rather than helping the world, General Secretary Xi has shown the Party's two-faced." pic.twitter.com/paRtZEv4e3
As we've noted before, we're now witnessing full court press diplomatic war by English speaking nations (the so-called intelligence "five eyes") against Beijing. Pompeo told the British people "well done" for the latest punitive measures targeting China.
"We began with the challenge presented by the Chinese communist party in the COVID-19 virus which originated in Wuhan, China," Pompeo emphasized, while calling on all democratic countries to unite against the "threat" of Chinese aggression.
He demanded that China behave "consistent with international order". Interestingly, it's much the same rhetoric used against Russia a mere months ago.
The statement followed "candid" talks with PM Boris Johnson focused on China.
And on the same morning of Pompeo's Downing Street presser, this headline has emerged:
US prosecutors accuse two Chinese hackers of stealing trade secrets and targeting firms working on COVID-19 vaccine.
Last week it was the Russians, and now it's the Chinese. In this case, the pair of Chinese nationals, who it appears will not be brought to justice given they reside in China, are charged with stealing hundreds of millions of dollars worth of trade secrets and intellectual property.
The #FBI and our partners have announced that a federal grand jury returned an indictment earlier this month charging Li Xiaoyu and Dong Jiazhi for their alleged participation in a global computer intrusion campaign. https://t.co/BJOJtDA8cH pic.twitter.com/zMVJkmHubL— FBI (@FBI) July 21, 2020
It seems the DOJ announcement was timed precisely to come amid Pompeo's UK visit where he continues talking tough on China. The details, according to ABC News, are as follows:
The Justice Department has announced an 11-count indictment charging two alleged Chinese hackers accused of carrying out a massive global cyber intrusion campaign to steal trade secrets, including most recently targeting companies conducting research for a COVID-19 vaccine.
Li Xiaoyu and Dong Jiazhi, both Chinese nationals currently living in China, are alleged in the indictment to be active leaders of a hacking campaign that has been ongoing for more than 10 years and has targeted hundreds of companies in more than 11 countries, including the U.S.
"The hackers stole terabytes of data which comprised a sophisticated and prolific threat to U.S. networks," the DOJ's press release said. "More recently, the defendants probed for vulnerabilities in computer networks of companies developing COVID-19 vaccines, testing technology, and treatments."
Here is the full grand jury indictment:
Two Chinese Hackers Working with the Ministry of State Security Charged with Global Computer Intrusion Campaign Targeting Intellectual Property and Confidential Business Information, Including COVID-19 Research https://t.co/4PAHFfxja0— James Mulvenon (@jmulvenon) July 21, 2020
China has lately warned the UK not to "dance to the tune of the Americans". But this dictum and appeal appears too late.