More than 160 former researchers with the Los Alamos nuclear laboratory in New Mexico have joined Chinese advanced weapons programs over the past several decades, according to a recent study from the private security firm Strider Technologies.
Between 1987 and 2021, the communist government in Beijing enticed 162 scientists who at some point worked at the New Mexico lab to work on a range of nuclear and weapons research programs, Bill Gertz of the Washington Times reported. Of these, 15 worked in the section of Los Alamos that designs nuclear weapons.
“Former Los Alamos scientists have made, and continue to make, considerable contributions to the PRC hypersonic, missile and submarine programs that present an array of security risks for the United States and the entire free world,” Strider asserted in its report.
Strider CEO Greg Levesque warned that Beijing would gain a significant technological edge should it continue poaching American scientists.
“Our research shows [China] has seen a significant return on their investment with advances in critical military technologies,” he said. “Now, more than ever, it is a national security imperative for the U.S. and our allies to identify and protect leading talent in both the public and private sectors.”
The report comes amid Chinese saber-rattling over its claims to sovereignty over Taiwan. President Joe Biden suggested the U.S. would intervene militarily if China attempted to take the island, though the White House this week walked back those comments.