‘What to do about Huawei?’

It is time for both the administration and the Congress to reveal and publish what they have discovered about the Chinese telecoms giant.

The title above was taken from a recent column by Wall Street Journal columnist Holman Jenkins Jr. that chronicles the difficulties the Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei has encountered in its attempt to crack the U.S. market. The column provoked a strong letter of protest from three members of Congress—Senator Jon Kyl (R.-Arizona) and Representatives Frank Wolf (R.-Virginia) and Sue Myrick (R.-North Carolina)—arguing that the matter of Huawei’s activities is “far more complicated and dangerous than the piece suggests” and constitutes a threat to national security.

In his piece, Jenkins first notes that, given the abysmal Chinese record of intellectual property theft and official corruption, “Tears don’t spring from our eyes … for the travails of Huawei Technologies.” Though it is the world’s second-largest provider of telecoms equipment, with 45 of the 50 top wireless operators among its customers, Huawei has been minimally successful in the United States—not least because of direct interventions by U.S. government agencies. For example, last October, the U.S. Department of Commerce banned the company from supplying equipment to a new emergency wireless network for first responders. Huawei and the Chinese government have complained bitterly about this “unfair” treatment, arguing that it stems from a desire to protect American companies (specifically Cisco) from foreign competition.

In his article, Jenkins concedes an element of protectionism, but he also tackles the security issue and queries: “Does blackballing Huawei actually make America safer?” His answer: “Probably not.”

Read the full article at The American website.

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