Public relations rule No. 1: Turn that extreme negative into a mild positive. Rule No. 2: Quickly delete the story that Rule No. 1 produced.

China has a smog problem. A life-halting, child-tumor-causing, observable-from-space smog catastrophe. It's gotten so bad in the past week that there's talk of an "airpocalypse." But good news! Chinese people are much safer from capitalist pig-dog attacks, thanks to smog.

Global Times, a news site affiliated with the Chinese Communist Party, wrote that "Smog may affect people's health and daily lives … but on the battlefield, it can serve as a defensive advantage in military operations," according to the South China Morning Post:

Missile guidance that relies on human sight, infrared rays and lasers could be affected by smog in varing degrees, the article said. It explained that tiny particles in the air contributing to air pollution could hinder missile guidance systems.

The article said that during the Kosovo war, soldiers of the then Federal Republic of Yugoslavia used smoke from burning tyres to hamper Nato air strikes. The smoke reduced visibility, hindering reconnaissance efforts, the article said.

The article apparently failed to note that the "then Federal Republic of Yugoslavia"—or, as we call it, Serbia—was routed by NATO and forced to withdraw from Kosovo. Although maybe the smoke also contributed to NATO's errant bombs and scores of civilian casualties. Who can say!

Commenters were rough with Global Times' party line, which probably explains why the original post now appears to be missing. Clearly, these snarky haters don't live in China's smog zones, else they would be smarter and funnier than they are.

[Photo credit: AP]