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‘For the first time in NATO’s history’ all leaders agree on something — China is a security challenge: NATO secretary general

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For the first time in NATO’s history all 29-member states agree on one thing — that China poses security challenges and opportunities that need to be addressed, according to the NATO secretary general.

Jens Stoltenberg
Jens Stoltenberg

“We all agreed – and that’s for the first time in NATO’s history – that we had to address the consequences for our security of the rise of China” — NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

Speaking in Brussels ahead of NATO Defense Ministers meeting on Wednesday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that China was the one issue that everyone could agree on at the NATO Leaders Meeting in London last December.

“We all agreed – and that’s for the first time in NATO’s history – at the leaders meeting in London, that we had to address the consequences for our security of the rise of China,” he declared.

“China will soon have the largest economy in the world. It already has the second-largest defense budget. It is developing and investing heavily in new, advanced military capabilities.

“What we see is that there are both challenges and opportunities related to the rise of China. And I welcome the fact that NATO allies are now together addressing both the opportunities, but also the challenges,” Stoltenberg added.

“There are about a thousand open intellectual property cases with the FBI — nearly all of them somehow connected to China” — US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

China siphons American technology and intellectual property through legal and illegal means while the Communist Party abuses that technology to commit “egregious human rights violations,” including predictive policing and DNA profiling of an entire ethnic minority — a million of which have been sent to “reeducation camps.”

China also has databases on the behavior, preferences, and vulnerabilities of hundreds of millions of Americans to use for intelligence purposes.

Needless to say, the US doesn’t trust China to play fair, and it is encouraging its allies in NATO to address the China problem — and miraculously, it’s the one thing that everyone agrees on.

“Reliance on Chinese 5G vendors could render our partners’ critical systems vulnerable to disruption, manipulation, and espionage” — US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper

On Thursday, US Secretary of Defense and member of the Council on Foreign Relations Mark Esper was in Brussels as well to meet with NATO allies where he told the press that China was of grave concern to partnerships and intelligence sharing — particularly on the 5G front.

“NATO allies must carefully consider the long-term risks of the economic and commercial choices they make, particularly regarding the integration of Chinese telecommunications into European infrastructure,” said Esper.

“At the end of the day Chinese telecom firms have a legal obligation to provide technical support and assistance to the Communist Party, and that concerns us deeply.

“Reliance on Chinese 5G vendors could render our partners’ critical systems vulnerable to disruption, manipulation, and espionage.

“This could jeopardize our communication and intelligence sharing capabilities, and by extension, our partnerships.

“To counter this the United States is encouraging allied and US tech companies to develop alternative 5G solutions,” he added.

Why the US is trying to block Huawei’s trans-continental courtship of allies over 5G: perspective

The US government has been warning its allies that the Chinese tech company, Huawei, cannot be trusted to rollout 5G infrastructures in their countries, and that China’s Communist regime would have untethered access to all of their data.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently warned, “China’s National Intelligence Law makes clear that the Chinese Communist Party can force any 5G supplier headquartered in China to turn over data and take other actions in secret.”

“We’re putting our allies and partners on notice about the massive security and privacy risks connecting to letting Huawei construct their 5G networks inside of their countries,” he added.

Despite America’s warnings, Huawei has been courting countries across the world in its quest to rollout its 5G network internationally.

When the UK agreed to allow Huawei to build part of Britain’s 5G network, many US politicians took to Twitter to express their disdain, fearing a strained relationship between the US and the UK.

US politicians harumph over UK decision to allow Huawei in 5G network

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Tim Hinchliffe
Tim Hinchliffe is the editor of The Sociable. His passions include writing about how technology impacts society and the parallels between Artificial Intelligence and Mythology. Previously, he was a reporter for the Ghanaian Chronicle in West Africa and an editor at Colombia Reports in South America. tim@sociable.co