China’s New Aircraft Draws Netizen Attention

State-run media on Tuesday praised China’s latest advancement – an airplane capable of inducing nervous breakdowns. From Bloomberg:

Detailed photos of the plane — known as the Gaoxin VII — circulated on the Chinese Internet in advance of the article, probably leaked by military sources eager to publicize the new aircraft. In the article, the neither confirms nor denies the plane’s existence. It does reprint the photos and provide a thorough inventory of the aircraft’s (theoretically) formidable capabilities:

“When carrying out a mission, the airplane will use its own ‘programs’ to forcefully overpower enemy television stations, radio stations and wireless communication networks, interfere with the enemy’s dissemination programs, affect the enemy’s military-civilian morale, and create rumors and confusion, thus causing the enemy, from government to everyday citizens, to have ‘nervous breakdowns’ and achieving their goal of rendering them helpless and unable to fight.”

In other words: One moment you’re sitting at home watching CNN, and the next you’re a basket case because your television is locked on a steady stream of Chinese Communist Party propaganda.

Jeremy Blum of the South China Morning Post reports that netizens were unimpressed with both the plane and state media:

“This in [itself] is propaganda,” one user wrote. “[The Chinese government] uses propaganda to brainwash its own people, and now they want to use it for modern warfare as well? They shouldn’t make such an exhibition of themselves.”

“The Global Times is a weapon of mass disinformation,” another replied.

Other wrote that they were wary of the deadly nature of psychological warfare and its usage in World War II and the Korean War, but simply could not take the article’s choice of words seriously – particularly its claims about the Gaoxin 7 giving the enemy “nervous breakdowns”.

“This ‘weapon of mass persuasion’ is going to give people nervous breakdowns?” one perplexed poster wrote. “Who writes this ignorant stuff?” [Source]