The theory is that scientists are being placed here to learn about our missile technology.

The Washington Times reports:

Chinese military secretly placing scientists in U.S. universities

The Chinese government is secretly enrolling the country’s prize military scientists in Western universities to gain expertise in such areas as “hypersonic missiles and navigation technology,” according to a new report.

The report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, which has links to the Australian defense ministry, claimed that People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has paid for “more than 2,500 military scientists and engineers to study abroad,” with many of them concealing their official ties to China’s defense community.

A key target of Beijing’s program, the institute suggests, are universities located in the so-called “Five Eyes countries” — the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand — that have established a close intelligence-sharing network.

“Dozens of PLA scientists have obscured their military affiliations to travel to Five Eyes countries and the European Union, including at least 17 to Australia, where they work in areas such as hypersonic missiles and navigation technology,” said the report published this week, warning that “it’s not clear that Western universities and governments are fully aware of this phenomenon.”

“Most scientists sent abroad by the PLA appear to be open about which institutions they come from,” but in some cases the scientists “use various kinds of cover, ranging from the use of misleading historical names for their institutions to the use of names of non-existent institutions,” the report said.