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DIU chief says U.S. not doing enough against China threat

The head of the Defense Innovation Unit said the U.S. isn't doing enough to mitigate the China threat.

"What China is doing, in my mind, is the most strategic threat of our generation. If you look over the long term, China is the relationship that we have to understand and get right, "DIU Director Michael Brown said during a July 19 panel discussion at the Aspen Security Forum. "And in my mind, we're not doing the amount we should do to prepare for that."

Brown went on to say that China's economy eclipsing the U.S. has strong implications for national security and that the U.S. will need to invest heavily in STEM education and federal research and development.

"National security follows economic security and prosperity, and technology is the new battleground that allows economic prosperity," he said.

Brown also touched on recent controversies surrounding Microsoft and Google employees denouncing their companies' involvement with DOD projects, saying the Defense Department should work to be an easier partner to work with.

DIU was involved with Google's Project Maven. "It becomes more complex with these global, multinational (companies)," he said. "We need to be an easier customer for those companies, and that's about speed and getting some money to the right customers."

About the Author

Lauren C. Williams is senior editor for FCW and Defense Systems, covering defense and cybersecurity.

Prior to joining FCW, Williams was the tech reporter for ThinkProgress, where she covered everything from internet culture to national security issues. In past positions, Williams covered health care, politics and crime for various publications, including The Seattle Times.

Williams graduated with a master's in journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park and a bachelor's in dietetics from the University of Delaware. She can be contacted at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter @lalaurenista.

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