Washington is driving another wave of scaremongering by warning the world of the alleged dangers that King tech giant Huawei poses. But without solid evidence, the message seems more like a cover for self-interest.
Senior American officials have urged the world to be "vigilant" on Chinese technology companies and their communications networks, which threaten to curb partnerships with abusive allies.
Clear and Present Danger
American President Donald Trump and his inner circle are fixed on the idea that Chinese technology companies are a national security threat to the United States, accusing them of spying and gathering facilities for Beijing. As a result, Chinese technology companies ̵
"We will make sure that we identify those opportunities and risks of using that equipment," US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said recently and explained that the US's seemingly excessive attempt to bring its European and Asian allies to to stop, even if they look in Beijing, and preferably back from telecommunications development projects with Huawei.
After Months With strong words, the world has not been presented with any credible evidence to suggest that Huawei – the Chinese leading telecommunications company – has ever used its hardware or software to facilitate Beijing's spy activities .
On the contrary, an international consensus has formed over the last couple of months challenging Washington's claims. Only recently, Robert Hannigan, former director of the UK intelligence agency, GCHQ, made it clear that there is no evidence of Huawei's cyber-espionage activities. "The main point here, hidden by the growing hysteria of Chinese technology, is that [the National Cyber Security Centre] has never found evidence of malicious Chinese state networking through Huawei," he wrote in the Financial Times.
"Claiming that any Chinese technology in any part of a 5G network represents an unacceptable risk is nonsense."
Hannig's expert assessment is in sync with the Italian Ministry of Industry, which sees no threat from Huawei's participation in building its fifth-generation mobile phone network. "National security is a priority, and if any critical issues arose – which so far have not – the Ministry would consider not taking action," the ministry said this month.
The German IT caretaker also noted that there was no evidence that the Chinese giant had ever spied on their customers. The German Industry Manager (BDI) issued similar reservations and said "you need evidence" before accusing Huawei of spying for Beijing.
Paris also refused to listen to the American warnings about Huawei, rejecting proposed legislation earlier this month which intends to tough controls on telecoms.
But some of Washington's allies have accepted crusades against Chinese technology. Warsaw considers a ban on some Huawei products and required joint EU action on the company after a Huawei sales advisor was arrested by Poland's internal security agency. Officials later reported that his activity was not related to the technical giant, who immediately fired him.
While largely ignored by America's European allies, Washington paranoia was well received across the Pacific in New Zealand and Australia, which faithfully prevented Chinese telecoms from assisting in developing 5G networks.
Attacks on all fronts
However, the US campaign against the Chinese giant is not only limited to scaremongering.
Huawei, according to the United States, conspired to steal T-Mobile's intellectual property rights between 2012 and 2014, circumvented its one-sided sanctions against Iran – allegedly offense that would surely give Washington a formal legitimate reason to pursue company – and committed wire and bank fraud.
On the request of the United States, Canada arrested Huawei Chief Financial Officer Wanzhou Meng, the daughter of Huawei's founder, over Iran sanctions. The move provided for the relationship between Washington and Beijing, but has so far proved to be even greater headache for Ottawa.
Trump has already suggested he can use Wanzhou Meng's arrest as a negotiating chip in the United States & # 39; s long-standing and difficult trade negotiations with China. The two nations are already locked into what has been referred to as a trade crisis, with both imposing tariffs on one another.
Beijing has rejected US claims that Chinese 5G network technology poses some security risk and notes that the Huawei campaign is designed to "make an excuse to suppress the legitimate development" of the company. China claims that Huawei is leading the development of 5G communications, while US companies are lagging behind in the competition to roll out the new mobile network technology, despite billions of dollars in investment.
"There is no way the United States can crush us," Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei told the BBC on Monday in his first interview since the arrest of his daughter. "The world cannot leave us because we are more advanced."
"Though they [the US] persuade more countries not to use us temporarily, we can always flatten things a little," he said.
While targeted Chinese technology could be an attempt to give the Washington transition in its trade war with Beijing, judging by the reactions of European countries, much of the rest of the world is just bad business.
Do you like this story? Share it with a friend!