- A new report says Israel has helped China develop a new
fighter jet built with Russian components and is weighing a Chinese request
for an Israeli radar system.
- A report by the Washington-based Jamestown Foundation
said China has sought Israeli radar for its new J-10 Chengdu fighter-jet.
The J-10 is said to make extensive use of foreign components, largely from
Russia, Middle East Newsline reported.
- Military discussion between Israel and China have not
been in the news since the Jewish state cancelled the Phalcon airborne
early-warning radar to Beijing last year. The cancellation came after heavy
- The report also cited "possible Israeli design assistance"
for China's HQ-9/FT-2000 surface-to-air missile and the SONG conventional
- The report said the Chengdu J-10 multirole fighter was
built with Israeli help. Israel, Fisher said, provided assistance in developing
the airframe and control system.
- The engine for the J-10 "will be a Russian Saturn-Alyuka
AL-31FN and its radar likely from Israel or Russia, or influenced by their
technology," the report, authored by Richard Fisher, said. "The
new SD-10 active guided air-launched anti-aircraft missile uses the radar
and data link from Russia's very capable Vympel R-77, combined with a Chinese
- Fisher, a senior fellow with the Jamestown Foundation,
is the managing editor of China Brief. The publication focuses on China's
emerging strategic power.
- Fisher, in a report entitled "Military Sales to
China: Going to Pieces," said Beijing seeks to build indigenous weapons
with imported foreign-made components. The report said Israel's Phalcon
radar was to have been placed on a Russian Il-76 cargo plane.
- "The PLA [Chinese military] was hoping to make the
Phalcon, which used modern and effective phased-array technology, a centerpiece
of its developing military information architecture, and a critical force-multiplier
for the PLAAF [air force]," the report said. "The PLA timetable
was set back several years. The embarrassment of powerlessness over the
situation would have been avoided had the system been built in China, had
China been able to develop it."
- The report said China's military has still not mastered
what it termed the current intermediate stage of coproduction. It cited
a 1996 contract to coproduce 200 J-11 aircraft, a version of Russia's Su-27SK
fighter-jet. The first two jets were so poorly assembled that Russian technicians
had to rebuild them.
- But the J-11, produced by China's Shenyang, has been
improved and now has a better finish that Russian-made Su-27s. Shenyang
will also modify its J-11s with a new Chinese radar that will make them
multi-role fighter and attack capable.
- The report said China plans to obtain a range of systems
and technology from Britain. They include micro- and nano-satellites and
airborne early-warning radar for the Y-8 aircraft.