Daily Trust - Britain succumbs to US pressure to ban Huawei from 5G

 

Britain succumbs to US pressure to ban Huawei from 5G

As  the  English medieval  proverb  goes,  “blood  is  thicker  than water.”  Just  as  I  do  not  believe  in  the  accuracy  of  this  statement from rheology standpoint, the English never meant it literal, either.  On the other hand, what they are saying is that bonds with family members  will  always  be  stronger  than  bonds  formed  out  of friendship or love. Not a good mindset for some of us  who truly believe  in  friendship.

However,  it  is  amazingly  true  most  of  the time.   On  14  July  2020,  Britain,  a  historical  ally  of  the  US,  both politically and familially, succumbed to pressures from the US to do  away  with  China’s  Huawei  in  matters  of  5G  deployment.

Apparently  the  pressure  on  Britain  from  the  US  has  been formidable  to  bear.  So,  despite  Trump’s  apparent  minuscule deference for Britain and the European Union, the US got its wish.

Specifically,  the  British  government  said  that  it  would  ban  the purchase  of  new  Huawei  equipment  for  5G  networks,  escalating tensions  with  China:  “The  new  U.S.  measures  restrict  Huawei’s ability  to  produce  important  products  using  U.S.  technology  or software.

The  National  Cybersecurity  Center  has  reviewed  the consequences of the U.S.’s actions. The N.C.C. has now reported to ministers  that  they  have  significantly  changed  their  security assessment of Huawei’s presence in the U.K.’s 5G network. Given the uncertainty that this creates around Huawei’s supply chain, the U.K.  can  no  longer  be  confident  it  will  be able  to  guarantee the security of future 5G — Huawei 5G equipment — affected by the change in U.S. foreign direct product rules.

The government agrees with the  National Cybersecurity  Center’s advice. The best  way  to secure  our  networks  is  for  operators  to  stop  using  new  affected Huawei  equipment  to  build  the  U.K.’s  future  5G  networks.  This will delay our rollout of 5G. Our decisions in January had already set  back  that  rollout  by  a  year  and  cost  up  to  a  billion  pounds.

Today’s  decision  to  ban  the  procurement  of  new  Huawei  5G equipment from the end of this year will delay rollout by a further year, and will add up to half a billion pounds to costs. This means a cumulative delay to 5G rollout of two to three years and costs of up to  2  billion  pounds.  This  will  have  real  consequences  for  the connections on which all our constituents rely.”

The battle for 5G dominance has been fierce and protracted. In the 3 June 2019 article in this  column in  Daily Trust, I talked about how the government of China has carried Huawei’s problems on its head and forcing countries to declare which side they are on: US or China.

China reportedly groups countries into  three, in terms of whether they are on its side or on the side of the US. Staunch US allies like  Japan, reportedly get the cold shoulder from Beijing, and Beijing keeping a minimum contact with them, while engaging in business only  when  it  suits  China’s  own  interests.

The  second  group  of countries,  typified  by  The  Philippines,  is  “pro-China.”  These countries  are  sensitive  to  economic  incentives,  and  are  keen  to utilize China’s Belt & Road Initiative (BRI). China showers them with  economic  benefits  to  keep  them  loyal.  The  third  group  is “opportunistic” countries such as South Korea.

According to the 31 May  2019  issue  of  The  Korean  Times,  “Instead  of  luring  these countries  with  economic  benefits,  China’s  recipe  is  to  trample them.”

China  allegedly  punishes  a  country  like  South  Korea severely  so  that  it  will  serve  as  a  “palpable”  lesson  to  the  other countries in the region.   As  suggested  by  Adam  Satariano,  Stephen  Castle,  and  David Sanger on 14 July 2020 in New York Times, “Britain’s about-face signals  a  new  willingness  among  Western  countries  to  confront China,  a  determination  that  has  grown  firmer  since  Beijing  last month adopted a sweeping law to tighten its grip on Hong Kong, the semi-autonomous city that was a British colony until 1997.

On Tuesday,  Robert  O’Brien,  President  Trump’s  national  security adviser, was in  Paris for meetings about  China with counterparts from Britain, France, Germany and Italy.” Australia and Japan have since banned Huawei in their 5G.   What is in 5G that’s apparently making every country go bonkers? As  I  alluded  to  above,  it’s  not  just  about  5G;  there  is  politics  – based on the West’s assessment of China’s human rights violation.

There is also the perennial problem of alleged China’s flagrant theft of  intellectual  properties  from  the  West.  China’s  National Intelligence  Law,  which  holds  Chinese  companies  legally responsible  for  providing  access  and  cooperation  for  China  state intelligence gathering, also doesn’t help.    The promise of 5G is extensive.  As stated in this column in the 18 February  2019  article,  “the  reason  for  this  is  not  far-fetched:  the stakes in terms of national security are going to be exponentially high  for  a  country  because  5G  will  change  the  whole  way  that societies  function.”  The  5G  is  not  simply  a  matter  of  faster download  speeds  relative  to  4G,  the  system  will  link  everything from the cars you drive to the hospitals you visit, in a way that you probably  still  cannot  imagine.  The  connectedness  involved  in Internet of Things  implies a  potentially severe security risk  for a country.”

 

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Britain succumbs to US pressure to ban Huawei from 5G

As  the  English medieval  proverb  goes,  “blood  is  thicker  than water.”  Just  as  I  do  not  believe  in  the  accuracy  of  this  statement from rheology standpoint, the English never meant it literal, either.  On the other hand, what they are saying is that bonds with family members  will  always  be  stronger  than  bonds  formed  out  of friendship or love. Not a good mindset for some of us  who truly believe  in  friendship.

However,  it  is  amazingly  true  most  of  the time.   On  14  July  2020,  Britain,  a  historical  ally  of  the  US,  both politically and familially, succumbed to pressures from the US to do  away  with  China’s  Huawei  in  matters  of  5G  deployment.

Apparently  the  pressure  on  Britain  from  the  US  has  been formidable  to  bear.  So,  despite  Trump’s  apparent  minuscule deference for Britain and the European Union, the US got its wish.

Specifically,  the  British  government  said  that  it  would  ban  the purchase  of  new  Huawei  equipment  for  5G  networks,  escalating tensions  with  China:  “The  new  U.S.  measures  restrict  Huawei’s ability  to  produce  important  products  using  U.S.  technology  or software.

The  National  Cybersecurity  Center  has  reviewed  the consequences of the U.S.’s actions. The N.C.C. has now reported to ministers  that  they  have  significantly  changed  their  security assessment of Huawei’s presence in the U.K.’s 5G network. Given the uncertainty that this creates around Huawei’s supply chain, the U.K.  can  no  longer  be  confident  it  will  be able  to  guarantee the security of future 5G — Huawei 5G equipment — affected by the change in U.S. foreign direct product rules.

The government agrees with the  National Cybersecurity  Center’s advice. The best  way  to secure  our  networks  is  for  operators  to  stop  using  new  affected Huawei  equipment  to  build  the  U.K.’s  future  5G  networks.  This will delay our rollout of 5G. Our decisions in January had already set  back  that  rollout  by  a  year  and  cost  up  to  a  billion  pounds.

Today’s  decision  to  ban  the  procurement  of  new  Huawei  5G equipment from the end of this year will delay rollout by a further year, and will add up to half a billion pounds to costs. This means a cumulative delay to 5G rollout of two to three years and costs of up to  2  billion  pounds.  This  will  have  real  consequences  for  the connections on which all our constituents rely.”

The battle for 5G dominance has been fierce and protracted. In the 3 June 2019 article in this  column in  Daily Trust, I talked about how the government of China has carried Huawei’s problems on its head and forcing countries to declare which side they are on: US or China.

China reportedly groups countries into  three, in terms of whether they are on its side or on the side of the US. Staunch US allies like  Japan, reportedly get the cold shoulder from Beijing, and Beijing keeping a minimum contact with them, while engaging in business only  when  it  suits  China’s  own  interests.

The  second  group  of countries,  typified  by  The  Philippines,  is  “pro-China.”  These countries  are  sensitive  to  economic  incentives,  and  are  keen  to utilize China’s Belt & Road Initiative (BRI). China showers them with  economic  benefits  to  keep  them  loyal.  The  third  group  is “opportunistic” countries such as South Korea.

According to the 31 May  2019  issue  of  The  Korean  Times,  “Instead  of  luring  these countries  with  economic  benefits,  China’s  recipe  is  to  trample them.”

China  allegedly  punishes  a  country  like  South  Korea severely  so  that  it  will  serve  as  a  “palpable”  lesson  to  the  other countries in the region.   As  suggested  by  Adam  Satariano,  Stephen  Castle,  and  David Sanger on 14 July 2020 in New York Times, “Britain’s about-face signals  a  new  willingness  among  Western  countries  to  confront China,  a  determination  that  has  grown  firmer  since  Beijing  last month adopted a sweeping law to tighten its grip on Hong Kong, the semi-autonomous city that was a British colony until 1997.

On Tuesday,  Robert  O’Brien,  President  Trump’s  national  security adviser, was in  Paris for meetings about  China with counterparts from Britain, France, Germany and Italy.” Australia and Japan have since banned Huawei in their 5G.   What is in 5G that’s apparently making every country go bonkers? As  I  alluded  to  above,  it’s  not  just  about  5G;  there  is  politics  – based on the West’s assessment of China’s human rights violation.

There is also the perennial problem of alleged China’s flagrant theft of  intellectual  properties  from  the  West.  China’s  National Intelligence  Law,  which  holds  Chinese  companies  legally responsible  for  providing  access  and  cooperation  for  China  state intelligence gathering, also doesn’t help.    The promise of 5G is extensive.  As stated in this column in the 18 February  2019  article,  “the  reason  for  this  is  not  far-fetched:  the stakes in terms of national security are going to be exponentially high  for  a  country  because  5G  will  change  the  whole  way  that societies  function.”  The  5G  is  not  simply  a  matter  of  faster download  speeds  relative  to  4G,  the  system  will  link  everything from the cars you drive to the hospitals you visit, in a way that you probably  still  cannot  imagine.  The  connectedness  involved  in Internet of Things  implies a  potentially severe security risk  for a country.”

 

More Stories