This week President Trump issued an Executive Order requiring tougher regulation and bans of telecoms equipment from unnamed “foreign adversaries” that threaten the US national security. At the same time briefing occurred that he has in mind China in general and the Huawei company in particular.
It is clear the US thinks Chinese involvement in digital systems can pose a future threat to their security and might give the Chinese state access to secrets and the ability to disrupt should it wish to do so. Most comment has concentrated on whether Huawei would ever act for the Chinese state in this way, and whether they have a possible “backdoor” into the systems and data on systems in the west where they provide hardware. They deny both suggestions. There is also the issue of the nature of the US/China relationship that underlies these concerns, with the USA effectively calling China an adversary and treating the Chinese state as a potential threat.
Should America’s allies adopt the same posture as Mr Trump wishes? This will be an issue when he next visits.