China's media is crying hypocrisy over US allegations that its military spied on American companies, pointing out that the US isn't exactly a stranger to espionage. The Global Times decried the US a "mincing rascal" and a "high-level hooligan," that had "severely infringed" on the human rights of the five officials it's charging, Reuters and Bloomberg report. The People's Daily called the move "high-handed and hypocritical," while Xinhua called it a "farce" in which the US is "a robber playing cop."
As the New York Times points out today, the NSA collects data from a host of foreign companies, including Brazil's Petrobras, China Telecom, and Huawei, a Chinese maker of Internet equipment. It's also spied on the EU's antitrust commissioner. US officials tell the Times that the NSA never spies to benefit specific American companies, but that it does spy to advance US economic interests in general. China thinks the US distinctions between legal and illegal spying are contrived and self-serving, and has suspended a US-Sino cooperation group on cyber issues in retaliation for the indictments.