Snowden nails US lie on its economic spying

Updated: 2014-09-13 07:42

By Chen Weihua(China Daily)

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The 2009 Quadrennial Intelligence Community Review, a report issued by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, expresses concern over the potential challenges US companies could face from multinationals based in other countries, including China, by 2025. In one potential scenario, it anticipates the US could face a "China/Russia/India/Iran-centered bloc" that challenges US supremacy. The report suggests using cyber operations against research and development centers in foreign countries and then assessing whether the findings would be useful to specific US industries.

Such a strategy is based on an intelligence assessment that the US is losing its lead in technology and innovation and this could pose one of the greatest threats to the world's only superpower. Specific areas listed include IT, nanotechnology, energy and medicine.

The solution suggested by the NSA in 2009 was to launch a program that targets corporate secrets through undercover surveillance, such as planting malware and spyware and gathering technology information by all means possible. It is clearly a strategy to lead by avid and calculated stealing.

When Snowden's revelations on NSA spying on China's Huawei Technologies and China Telecom were made public last year, US officials tried to put up a defense saying that it was purely for the purpose of national security. That of course also included NSA's spying on the European Union anti-trust commissioner investigating American IT giants, from Google and Microsoft to Intel, and on international organizations such as the International Monetary Fund.

In his Jan 17 speech, Obama declared: "We will not apologize simply because our services may be more effective." With the latest Snowden revelation, we can better understand why Obama and the US government want to keep alive the monstrous NSA. For these politicians, spying for the benefit of American companies is synonymous with spying to safeguard national security.

And how can you argue against national security in a national security state today?

The author, based in Washington, is deputy editor of China Daily USA.

(China Daily 09/13/2014 page5)

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