National security is being jeopardized by a wave of Chinese and Russian nationals sneaking onto US military bases, a top Navy admiral has warned.

US Fleet Forces Commander Daryl Caudle said that attempted infiltrations are happening ‘two or three times a week’ at Navy bases alone.

More than 100 attempts were made by Chinese nationals alone last year, with the perpetrators often claiming to be innocent tourists when caught.


‘This thing of our military bases getting penetrated by foreign nationals is happening more and more,’ Caudle told Fox News.

‘This is Russian, it’s Chinese it comes from all these different nations.’

‘A lot of times they have passports, they have papers, but they are in no way shape or form authorized to be on our base and it’s really hard for us to tell the underlying motive in these types of cases.’

Operatives from Communist China have been caught scuba diving close to Cape Canaveral, wandered on to a missile launch site in New Mexico, and claimed to be looking for Holiday Inn when caught at an Army base in Alaska.

In 2019, three Chinese nationals were sentenced to prison for illegally taking photographs of military infrastructure at the NAS Key West Navy base in Florida.

That same year two Chinese citizens were expelled from the U.S. after attempting to drive on to the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story in Virginia Beach, reported the Virginia Pilot.

But most foreign nationals who are caught are cited, given small fines and asked not to return, as trespassing is generally not considered a federal crime.

‘This is something we see probably two or three times a week, where we’re stopping these folks at the gate, and this is just the Navy alone,’ Caudle said

‘And usually, the cover story is I’m a student, I’m an enthusiast I want to see the ships that type of thing. ‘We have to turn them around and typically we will get the NCIS involved we will get biometrics of possible.’

Concern about Beijing’s intentions has ballooned in response to an 8,000 percent increase in Chinese nationals known to have crossed the southern border in the last three years.

More than 24,000 have been intercepted in the current financial year the House Committee on Homeland Security reported last month, and more asylum claims are approved for Chinese migrants than any other nationality.

Emily Harding, a former official with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, told WSJ that the Chinese spy operation is more of a numbers game.

‘The advantage the Chinese have is they are willing to throw people at collection in large numbers,’ she said.

‘If a few of them get caught, it will be very difficult for the US government to prove anything beyond trespassing, and those who don’t get caught are likely to collect something useful.’

The Navy was rocked in January when Petty Officer Wenheng Zhao, 26, was sentenced to 27 months in prison after spying for China at Naval Base Ventura County in California for more than 18 months.

The officer was arrested at the same time as fellow naturalized citizen Jinchao Wei, who was seized aboard the San Diego-based USS Essex and faces trial on spying charges in December.

But Rep. Glenn Grothman, R-Wis, of the House Oversight Committee said even ordinary Chinese tourists were pressured by their government to record items of military significance on trips to the US.

‘So it’s of particular concern because it’s so easy now to get in here. I mean, in essence, the United States has an open border.’ he said.

‘There’s no time more tempting for foreign countries to come in here and say, ‘let’s poke around and get information on American military bases’.

‘Why would a country be sending people here who are taking pictures of military bases or what have you unless it was for in preparation for or contingency for some either terrorist act, or even concerned about war,’ the Wisconsin lawmaker added.

‘If you were coming to United States, either for a job or for tourist reasons, I don’t think you’d be hanging around outside military bases.’

A spokesperson with the Chinese embassy in DC has dismissed claims that its nationals are targeting US bases as ‘purely ill-intentioned fabrications’.

‘We urge the relevant US officials to abandon the Cold War mentality, stop groundless accusations, and do more things that are conducive to enhancing mutual trust between the two countries and friendship between the two peoples,’ Liu Pengyu said.


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