The “classified” information was leaked by a Chinese player of the free-to-play multiplayer combat video game War Thunder. They anonymously posted an image of military documents for a round fired by a Type 99 MBT battle tank, along with the part sitting on top of the paper. The post was quickly removed from War Thunder’s forums, but has been circulating online.
Chinese-speaking players have translated the round’s schematics and have been sharing the data alongside the image.
His motivation was not to expose the Chinese military, but instead to have the game’s statistics updated.
He has since been banned from the forum.
The forum’s moderators told Kotaku: “Our community managers immediately banned the user and deleted his post, as the information on this particular shell is still classified in China.
“Publishing classified information on any vehicle of any nation at War Thunder forums is clearly prohibited, and the game developers never use it in their work.”
Incredibly, it’s not the first time this has happened, or even the second.
Last year, a different player posted the manual of a UK tank to a War Thunder forum, forcing Little Britain’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) to intervene.
And just a month later, a different player posted schematics of a French tank.
The Type 99 was introduced by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in 2001 to replace the ageing Type 88 introduced in the late 1980s.
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Taiwan has warned that China will soon have ong-range air and sea strike capabilities as well as strengthened regional air defence which will allow it to launch an attack.
The said that China’s aircraft carriers, the Liaoning, Shandong, and the Type 003, will be delivered to the Navy in 2027.
Meanwhile, the Type 055 10,000-ton destroyer, the Y-20U refueling tanker, and Chengdu J-20 stealth fighter will be mass-produced.
These assets will greatly help China in its efforts, according to the experts.