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China-Cuba Spy Base Expansion Raises U.S. Concerns

The Wall Street Journal reported on new findings from the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a Washington-based think tank. CSIS analyzed satellite images showing Cuba's expansion of electronic eavesdropping stations. These stations are suspected to be linked to China, particularly a new construction site near the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay.

U.S. officials believe Cuba and China are jointly operating these stations, which could intercept sensitive electronic communications from American military bases and space-launch facilities. The CSIS report identifies four key sites: Bejucal, El Salao, Wajay, and Calabazar. These sites are active and their missions are evolving.

The facilities could monitor U.S. satellite communications and potentially intercept data. They might also track rocket launches from Cape Canaveral and NASA's Kennedy Space Center, including SpaceX's Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets. This information is valuable for China as it competes with U.S. space technology advancements.

Explanation of Terms:

  • Electronic eavesdropping stations: Facilities designed to intercept and record electronic communications, often for intelligence purposes.
  • Satellite imagery: Photographs taken from satellites orbiting the Earth, used for surveillance and analysis.
  • Space-tracking capabilities: Technologies and systems used to monitor and analyze activities in space, such as satellite movements.

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