Chinese nationals are probing American military bases, according to a new report. The report, in The Wall Street Journal this week, said bases and other sensitive sites have been accessed up to 100 times in recent years. The Journal said officials it talked to, whom it did not name, called the incidents “a potential espionage threat.” The report said a joint agency group that included the Defense Department, FBI and other agencies reviewed incidents and found a pattern. Although the incidents vary from scuba divers near a Florida base to trespassers on a New Mexico missile range, the report said the common thread appears to be to test security. The people who intrude usually are Chinese nationals forced to do as they are told and then report back to their government. They often use scripted language to explain intrusions in rural areas where there is little to no tourism. Many who appear to have trespassed in the United States deliberately are detained and then sent out of the country, the report said, citing officials familiar with the incidents. The Chinese Embassy bristled at the report. Liu Pengyu, a representative of the embassy, called it “purely ill-intentioned fabrications.” “We urge the relevant U.S. officials to abandon the Cold War mentality, stop groundless accusations, and do more things that are conducive to enhancing mutual trust between the two countries and friendship between the two peoples.” The state-run Global Times referred to the report as “hype” and “an insult to readers’ intelligence,” according to National Review. “Borrowing a recent buzzword – AIGC (Artificial intelligence generated content), we can say stories in US media obsessed with China’s ‘spy’ operations are typically CIAGC, CIA-generated content,” the outlet wrote. Democratic Rep. Jason Crow of Colorado said Congress might need to wade into the issue because trespassing isn’t usually a federal crime, the Journal reported. “We need to work closely with our state and local partners to train them and equip them,” he said. “Right now, they don’t know how to deal with it.” Emily Harding, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., said China can send all the people it wants, regardless of what happens to some of them. “The advantage the Chinese have is they are willing to throw people at collection in large numbers,” she said. “If a few of them get caught, it will be very difficult for the U.S. government to prove anything beyond trespassing, and those who don’t get caught are likely to collect something useful.” Access at times comes “by speeding through security checkpoints,” said Sue Gough, a Pentagon representative. “These individuals are often cited criminally, barred from future installation access and escorted off-base,” she said, refusing to discuss specific cases. In one incident, a vehicle packed with Chinese citizens drove through a security checkpoint at Fort Wainwright in Alaska, according to USA Today. Although the individuals claimed they were simply lost, a drone was discovered in the vehicle. The Journal report noted that drones often are found on those detained who are suspected of espionage. David Deptula, a retired Air Force general who was a senior intelligence officer, said intrusions could be a way to leave behind sensors that gather information. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.