The US finally filed charges against Huawei and its detained CFO Meng Wanzhou.
The accusations basically boil down to supposedly evading anti-Iranian sanctions and stealing technology from American competitors, zeroing in on some specific cases in order to advance the larger infowar narrative that this Chinese company is unofficially functioning as a strategic arm of the communist state. The details of the charges themselves aren’t too important in this context when compared to their larger impact because the most important aspect to pay attention to is how the American government is trying to take down its chief international technology competitor in what can be described as the ongoing “tech arms race”.
Huawei is the only company capable of competing with Apple, and it’s also the global leader in the 5G technology that’s expected to take the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” to its next phase. The US fears losing its global monopoly on the internet in general and wireless technologies in particular, especially in what it had previously regarded as its lucrative “captive markets” in the West, so it has an incentive to fearmonger about Huawei’s intentions in order to deter others from doing business with them. It also shouldn’t be seen as coincidental that American ally Poland recently cracked down against an alleged Huawei conspiracy as well, since this sends a trans-Atlantic signal of what the US is after.
Being unable to compete in terms of the technology itself or the pricing thereof, the US is instead forced to resort to so-called “lawfare” and infowars in order to undercut its Chinese opponent. The replacement of outdated American technological infrastructure with updated Chinese systems will also deal a heavy blow to the NSA’s ability to vacuum up countless communications, which is probably the real reason why the US is in such a frenzy to stop Huawei from expanding to Europe and elsewhere at all costs. Considering the precedent introduced with its latest unilaterally imposed anti-Iranian sanctions regime, Washington might eventually countenance “secondary sanctions” against some of its partners that choose Chinese 5G companies over its own.
In terms of the bigger picture, China is challenging the US’ monopoly over most of the world’s information-communication technologies (ICT), leading to a sort of “bipolarity” whereby every country is being divided into two separate camps between these two technological superpowers. Seeing as how the future of practically all industries is linked to one extent or another to 5G technologies, it can be said that the US and China are vying with one another for control over one of the fundamental components of the global economy, therefore making the “tech arms race” many magnitudes more strategically important than the comparatively much more publicized “trade war”.
By Andrew Korybko
Source: Oriental Review