American Defense publication "The Drive" claims that Pakistan has helped China get access to American stealth aircraft technology. Specifically, the American website alleges that the Pakistanis gave Chinese access to the wreckage of the US stealth helicopter destroyed during the American raid to kill Usama Bin Laden in Abbottabad in 2011. Chinese experts have called the accusation "groundless", according to Global Times.
|Chinese Stealth Helicopter Model. Source: Henri Kenhmann
The accusations surfaced when a Chinese helicopter model, believed to be a variant of the Chinese Z-20 helicopter, was displayed in China on May 19, 2021. The model in question was spotted by @HenriKenhmann who posted a picture of it on social media. Here's how "The Drive" website describes it:
"The aircraft shown appears to be a stealthy adaptation of China's Z-20 medium-lift helicopter, which itself is something of a clone of the H-60 Black Hawk. The Z-20's story is a unique one in itself, as most don't realize that China was a purchaser of the Black Hawk in the '80s, during a period of time when the United States was exporting some military capabilities to China".
The Drive alleges that the Pakistanis retrieved the surviving tail of the US stealth helicopter that crashed and was subsequently blown up by the retreating American Navy Seal Team. The Chinese scientists
were allowed to look at the tail. Here's an excerpt of The Drive story:
"When the downed stealthy Black Hawk was demolished via an explosive charge at Bin Laden's Abbottabad compound, its tail, which was sitting high atop the wall that surrounds the residence, remained intact. We may have never known these helicopters even existed if it was destroyed. Pakistan subsequently carted off the tail, which was of an extremely exotic design, and used it as a geopolitical bargaining chip in the turbulent aftermath of the raid. It is known to have been closely examined by America's adversaries, namely by Pakistan's other top weapons provider, China. The tail was eventually returned to the U.S. after roughly three weeks of fiery diplomacy".
This is not the first time that Pakistanis have been accused of using the wreckage of US equipment to learn about the American technology.It is alleged that Pakistani engineers learned the cruise missile technology by dismantling and studying a US Tomahawk cruise missile that fell in Pakistani territory when President Bill Clinton fired these missiles to target Al Qaeda in Afghanistan. Pakistan now possesses fairly advanced missile technology
to defend itself.
A similar story is often told of the indigenous development of the Khushab nuclear reactors. Work on Khushab reprocessing plant started in 1974 when Pakistan signed a contract with the French company Saint-Gobain Techniques Nouvelles (SGN). In 1978, under U.S. pressure, France canceled the contract. Fortunately for Pakistan, the French had already given Pakistani scientists drawings and specifications before canceling the breeder reactor contract. Pakistan then proceeded to indigenously produce its own nuclear breeder reactors at Khushab. Four such reactors are now operating to produce plutonium for Pakistan's nuclear weapons program. Having done its first nuclear test in 1998, Pakistan now has a large and growing nuclear arsenal it needs to deter any enemy adventurism against it.