The U.S. Department of Commerce suspects a Chinese military academy and eleven of its associated research institutes are developing technology to support the Chinese military, including brain-control weaponry.
On Friday, the Commerce Department added 37 Chinese, Georgian, Malaysian, and Turkish entities to the restricted Entity List. The Commerce Department took particular note of China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences (AMMS) and its 11 affiliated research institutes “based on the body of information that AMMS and its eleven research institutes use biotechnology processes to support Chinese military end uses and end users, to include purported brain-control weaponry.”
The Commerce Department did not elaborate further on what evidence it has seen of the Chinese entities developing “brain-control weaponry,” but Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo indicated China could use those weapons both offensively against external adversaries, as well as crack down on its ethnic minority Uyghur population.
“The scientific pursuit of biotechnology and medical innovation can save lives. Unfortunately, the [People’s Republic of China] is choosing to use these technologies to pursue control over its people and its repression of members of ethnic and religious minority groups,” Raimondo said. “We cannot allow U.S. commodities, technologies, and software that support medical science and biotechnical innovation to be diverted toward uses contrary to U.S. national security.”
Craig Singleton, a former U.S. diplomat and current adjunct fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told ABC News the weapons the Commerce Department described could include “the stuff of science fiction, such as brain-controlled weaponry” that would allow “a Chinese commando to discharge a weapon with just a thought, not a trigger finger.”
The Treasury Department also listed eight Chinese technology firms developing military and security technologies on Thursday. One system the Treasury Department described, developed by Megvii Technology Limited, “Could recognize persons as being part of the Uyghur ethnic minority and send automated alarms to government authorities.”
Chinese military leaders have been talking about developing “brain control” weapons and “specific ethnic genetic attacks” for years, according to ABC News.
Retired U.S. Marine Lt. Col. Stephen Ganyard, who served as a U.S. diplomat for military affairs under President George W. Bush, told ABC News, “China’s research focus on these technologies is not unique. What is unique is their declared intent to weaponize their inventions.”
“Some of these technologies may not be easily contained and could have disastrous second and third-order consequences on civilian populations,” Ganyard added. “China’s seeking to weaponize advanced technologies is putting the whole world at risk of unforeseen and uncontainable consequence.”