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The acknowledgement comes from a Department of Defense report on China released Tuesday and submitted to the U.S. Congress.
The annual report providing intelligence information to the United States' highest legislative authority, entitled "Military and Security Developments Involving the People's Republic of China," reveals that China indeed surpasses the United States in naval and missile construction, as well as in its air defense.
According to the report, "China has already achieved parity with—or even exceeded—the United States in several military modernizations areas, including shipbuilding, land-based conventional ballistic and cruise missiles, and integrated air defense systems."
The Pentagon considers the Indo-Pacific region a priority for its military policies and understands Beijing's military strengthening as part of its "aggressive" strategy for national rejuvenation, seen as a threat not only to the region but the U.S. national interest as well.
"The PRC has the largest Navy in the world...[and] one of the world's largest forces of advanced long-range surface-to-air systems—including Russian built S-400s, S-300s, and domestically built systems—that constitute part of its robust and redundant integrated air defense system architecture," the U.S. military admits.
The Department of Defense sustains that "it's probable that by mid-century China will seek to develop an army equal or in some cases superior to that of the United States of any other superpower that China considers a threat."
While the report bluntly states, "China continues to undermine an international order based on laws to promote its own interests," a similar conclusion could be used to describe the Pentagon's actions and policies around the globe.