This Trump Administration just will not change its rabid position on Huawei, in spite of the fact that, after all this time, there is still no real evidence that they are an evil empire out to destroy the world. Once again, this arrogant, assumptive, administration has threatened retaliatory action against Britain if they allow Huawei to be part of their 5G buildout.
It amazes me that, as baseless as the Huawei spying accusations has proven to be, that this administration just keeps going… and going… and going.
There must be support for all of this U.S.-nonsense, somewhere. But I do not see much of it. I have regular discussions around this with a variety of individuals; some close, others just in passing. So far, few think what the administration is doing is warranted.
I just wonder if all of this posturing from the United States is around our lack of ability to move on 5G as quickly as some other countries, particularly the Pacific Rim. Perhaps the administration feels Huawei, and China in general, bashing will help the United States get a better position in global 5G ecosystem and other playing fields. To wit, Trump has just announced via Twitter that he intends to hike U.S. tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods and target hundreds of billions more soon.
Let us take a sidestep for a moment. If we should harbor disdain towards any country, it should be Russia. They are responsible for more nefarious activities in this country than anyone else is; from messing with our elections to creating tons of malicious software that attacks every aspect of our digital infrastructure. Their potential, and certainly their motivation, for disrupting America is much greater than that of the Chinese. Most ransomware, identity theft, fraud and malicious code attacks originate in Russia. So why does the Administration not go after them?
When it comes to 5G, here is what I believe to be a major issue. This country has a good wireless infrastructure in place that meets most of our current needs. Moreover, present technology is nowhere near the wall. 4G is, only, about half way to maxing out. We are not India, Africa, parts of Europe, Asia, or other countries where little wired infrastructure exists and almost all of their communications is via wireless. Such markets have a real need for a next generation, ubiquitous wireless infrastructure.
We do not have that same need. Therefore, there is not the motivation to run out and build this new wireless infrastructure, full tilt. In many other countries, 5G will improve, dramatically, communications and vertical apps. Here, and in some other first-world countries, not so much. Therefore, the urgency to build out 5G varies across the globe.
It seems that the Trump administration does not understand how the world has become a single, interconnected technological, and commercial, entity that requires global economic integration. It believes that thumping on China is going to change our global position in this ecosystem. The good economic times we are experiencing is due to a global economic platform. We no longer control the world’s economy.
Now, back to Britain. I Imagine Britain’s Prime Minister, Theresa May, is sick and tired of hearing from the United States. The first time the we threated her with intelligence sharing that went nowhere. May did what she deemed proper and fired her defense minister over a leak of discussions around Huawei.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will tell the Prime Minister that the Huawei poses a security risk to Britain and, thereby, the United States, and threaten the relationship – again. Is not the definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results? What is different this time than from past U.S threats? This drum has been beat to death. It is time for the administration to get over itself and start worrying about our real enemies (read Russia).
In this latest round, it seems someone forgot to tell Pompeo that the Brits are not a third world country with insufficient intelligence gathering capabilities. May is not a stupid person and the Brits have as good, perhaps even better, handle on global and national security than the United States.
Beyond Britain, the White House has continued to lobby, across the globe, against letting Huawei into networks. The latest being that the Chinese government has significant control over Huawei. While it is likely true, that is how China operates. In itself, that does not, necessarily, imply nefarious intent.
As I mentioned earlier, we have much more to worry about with Russia and North Korea. Yet President Trump continues to lead us to believe that Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-Un are the nicest people and have absolutely no interest in wreaking havoc on our country.
The actions of the do nothing to level the playing field. They only send everybody scrambling to find new sources and technologies – here in the states, that is. The rest of the world is just moving on as normal. Whom, exactly, are these policies hurting?
It is not that I discuss this empty headed. In addition to having my own confidants, recently I attended the CCA and smart city conferences. I talked to dozens of vendors about this, as well as speakers and attendees. With maybe three or four exceptions, nobody thinks banning Hawaii is a good idea. Their top responses were that it would only lead to higher prices and longer deployment delays – not just with 5G, but also other segments of the wireless sector. One vendor even told me it was our fault. We wanted cheap goods and turned a blind eye towards security, spying, and other potential pitfalls.
I will be going to the 5G conference next week in Denver and Connect X in a couple of weeks. I will play this record over some more there and again here, shortly thereafter.