The U.S. Dollar: A Victim of Its Own Success

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America’s most powerful weapon of war does not shoot, fly or explode. It’s not a submarine, plane, tank or laser. America’s most powerful strategic weapon today is the dollar.

The U.S. uses the dollar strategically to reward friends and punish enemies. The use of the dollar as a weapon is not limited to trade wars and currency wars, although the dollar is used tactically in those disputes. The dollar is much more powerful than that.

The dollar can be used for regime change by creating hyperinflation, bank runs and domestic dissent in countries targeted by the U.S. The U.S. can depose the governments of its adversaries, or at least blunt their policies without firing a shot. Continue reading

Facebook shared user data with Chinese firm despite warnings by US intelligence

Huawei

 

The online social media company Facebook shares data about its users with a Chinese telecommunications company that has been flagged in United States government reports as a threat to security. The New York Times revealed on Tuesday that Facebook has been routinely giving access to the private data of its users to four Chinese companies since at least 2010. The paper said that the data-sharing agreement with Lenovo, Oppo, TCL, and Huawei Technologies, has its roots in 2007. That was the year when Facebook began an effort to entice cell phone hardware and software manufacturers to include Facebook-friendly apps and features in their products. As part of the agreement, Facebook gave cell phone manufacturers access to its users’ private data, including “religious and political leanings, work and education history and relationship status”, said the Times. Continue reading

Ex-DIA Official Charged as Beijing Spy Used Chinese Cell Phones

Ron Hansen

Ron Hansen / LinkedIn

 

Former case officer colluded with MSS for years and sought work as a Chinese mole in DIA, FBI

A former Defense Intelligence Agency officer charged with spying for Beijing’s intelligence service used Chinese cell phones to communicate with his spy handlers, according to an FBI document.

Ron Rockwell Hansen, was arrested by the FBI on Saturday and charged with attempted transfer of defense secrets to China and other crimes. Continue reading

US cannot stop China’s innovation advancements

It would appear that the US is seriously worried about China’s technological advancements. Fearing the loss of the last comparative advantage over the Asian superpower has caused a genuine concern over national defense and competitiveness among America’s ruling elite.

The US using every possible means to curb Asia’s technological rise, including the banning of sales of essential chips to ZTE for seven years, invoking Section 301 of the Trade Act to investigate China’s “unfair trade practices” and barring investment in the information-technology sector. The Donald Trump administration’s target might be the Asian power’s “Made in China 2025”, a strategy meant to make China self-sufficient in an array of technologies.

The 301 investigation was meant to slow down China’s technological advancements by imposing stiff tariffs on a host of Chinese imports and barring the sales of US technology to Chinese firms. In addition, the anti-China faction of the US Congress and the Trump administration have barred Chinese investment in technology sectors. Continue reading

Six U.S. intelligence agencies warn against using Huawei phones

See also:

Intel Chiefs Sound Alarm on China Threat

The Secret Ways of Chinese Telecom Giant Huawei

Australian parliament reviews use of Chinese-made cell phones

 

Six intelligence officials, including the heads of the CIA, FBI, and NSA, have told the Senate Intelligence Committee that they would not recommend that U.S. citizens use smartphones from the Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE, reports CNBC. As FBI director Chris Wray told the committee:

Continue reading

Pentagon Links Chinese Cyber Security Firm to Beijing Spy Service

Joint Staff warns of cyber espionage dangers

A Chinese cyber security firm is covertly working with Beijing’s Ministry of State Security intelligence service in conducting cyber espionage operations, according to Pentagon intelligence officials.

The company known as Boyusec, officially the Bo Yu Guangzhou Information Technology Co., is also working with China’s global telecommunications company Huawei Technologies, which has been identified by U.S. intelligence agencies as linked to the Chinese military. Continue reading

One Port, Two Worlds: China Seeks Dominance in Athens Harbor

Russia and China are both successfully putting a wedge between America and Europe. With their tightening grip on Athens, Europe is threatened in its own homeland and will eventually decide to turn their backs on America. The alternative is to risk potential military conflict with Russia. In the future you will likely see a third marriage between Russia and Europe — and Russian military bases in Greece.

 

A Chinese executive with shipping company Cosco has helped transform part of Athen’s Port of Piraeus into a success story. The multinational firm now has a controversial plan to acquire the whole facility and put it on track to join the ranks of Hamburg and Rotterdam.

One could argue that China’s long path to Piraeus, Greece, began on April 27, 1961. It’s the day Mao Zedong founded the communist state’s first freight company, the China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO). The Great Leap Forward, Mao’s plan for industrialization, had proven to be a disaster at the time, leaving millions dead or starving. With Cosco, China had its eyes on overseas markets.

Almost 54 years later, the company is steering toward a major prize in Greece. After lengthy wavering, the Greek government– comprised of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, his far-left Syriza party and the right-wing populist Independent Greeks — has announced it will be selling the majority of its share in Athens’ Piraeus Port Authority. So far, Cosco is the most promising bidder. Continue reading

Glenn Greenwald: how the NSA tampers with US-made internet routers

For years, the US government loudly warned the world that Chinese routers and other internet devices pose a “threat” because they are built with backdoor surveillance functionality that gives the Chinese government the ability to spy on anyone using them. Yet what the NSA’s documents show is that Americans have been engaged in precisely the activity that the US accused the Chinese of doing.

The drumbeat of American accusations against Chinese internet device manufacturers was unrelenting. In 2012, for example, a report from the House Intelligence Committee, headed by Mike Rogers, claimed that Huawei and ZTE, the top two Chinese telecommunications equipment companies, “may be violating United States laws” and have “not followed United States legal obligations or international standards of business behaviour”. The committee recommended that “the United States should view with suspicion the continued penetration of the US telecommunications market by Chinese telecommunications companies”. Continue reading

U.S. Military Voices Worries Over South Korean Use of Chinese Telecom Gear

Chris Bush, a spokesman for the U.S. Forces Korea said the command is concerned that a deal between China’s Huawei Technologies, Inc. and the South Korean company LG could undermine operational security.

“Telecommunications equipment is inherently vulnerable to a multitude of threats, from interception and monitoring to malicious software and applications, regardless of service provider,” Bush told the Washington Free Beacon when asked about security concerns related to the Huawei-LG deal.

A former senior Obama administration official said he is very concerned that the use of Huawei equipment in a nationwide telecommunications system on the peninsula ultimately will be used for espionage during both peacetime and sabotage in a conflict.

“Huawei is an arm of the Chinese government,” the former official said of the controversial equipment manufacturer that has been blocked several times from purchasing U.S. companies. He spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the evidence against Huawei. Continue reading

Inside TAO: Documents Reveal Top NSA Hacking Unit

For more on SCADAs, please see the following previous posts:

Exclusive: Cyberattack leaves natural gas pipelines vulnerable to sabotage

UPDATE 3: U.S. probes cyber attack on water system

Security backdoor found in China-made US military chip

 

The NSA’s TAO hacking unit is considered to be the intelligence agency’s top secret weapon. It maintains its own covert network, infiltrates computers around the world and even intercepts shipping deliveries to plant back doors in electronics ordered by those it is targeting.

In January 2010, numerous homeowners in San Antonio, Texas, stood baffled in front of their closed garage doors. They wanted to drive to work or head off to do their grocery shopping, but their garage door openers had gone dead, leaving them stranded. No matter how many times they pressed the buttons, the doors didn’t budge. The problem primarily affected residents in the western part of the city, around Military Drive and the interstate highway known as Loop 410. Continue reading

Chinese firm paid US gov’t intelligence adviser

WASHINGTON (AP) – A longtime adviser to the U.S. Director of National Intelligence has resigned after the government learned he has worked since 2010 as a paid consultant for Huawei Technologies Ltd., the Chinese technology company the U.S. has condemned as an espionage threat, The Associated Press has learned.

Theodore H. Moran, a respected expert on China’s international investment and professor at Georgetown University, had served since 2007 as adviser to the intelligence director’s advisory panel on foreign investment in the United States. Moran also was an adviser to the National Intelligence Council, a group of 18 senior analysts and policy experts who provide U.S. spy agencies with judgments on important international issues. Continue reading

China Seeks Weaker Export Controls on Military Equipment

The Clintons helped the Chinese modernize and eventually become on par with American military might, whereas the Obamas will aid them in surpassing American military might. The USA is in grave danger but sadly most Americans are too busy worrying about how their favorite NFL team will perform next Sunday afternoon.

Rep. Frank Wolf (R., Va.) seems to have finally awakened from his sleep to the threat within this case, but is still only “surprised” — yet doesn’t know this has been going on for decades.

Additional sources on the Clinton-China connection:

Source 1

Source 2

China asks Obama administration to loosen controls on exports of high-tech military goods and lift all sanctions

China has supplied the Obama administration with a detailed list of space, military, and defense technology controls that it wants changed, and an interagency review is underway to meet some of Beijing’s demands, according to U.S. officials.

The Chinese government list of U.S. defense and dual-use civilian-military trade controls and policy changes was sent recently to the Commerce Department in preparation for an upcoming meeting of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT).

The request includes lifting all sanctions imposed by Congress after the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre; permitting transfers of 15 Black Hawk engines for helicopters sold in the 1980s prior to those sanctions; and the lifting of U.S. sanctions on five Chinese companies involved in past illicit arms sales to Iran, and other rogue states, according to officials familiar with internal reports. Continue reading

China’s Strategy in Afghanistan

Beijing is keen to increase its involvement in the country following the planned U.S. withdrawal in 2014. But security problems may interfere.

For a relatively small drilling operation, China National Petroleum Corporation’s (CNPC) project in Afghanistan’s Sar-e-Pul province has a large footprint. Several layers of fences and containers serving as blast walls surround the extraction site, which includes dormitories, an office complex and various security structures. Throughout the day, trucks ferry in equipment and more containers. On the outside, the faces are all Afghan, but CNPC’s logo and bright red Chinese slogans are impossible to miss. Continue reading

Exclusive: U.S. nuclear lab removes Chinese tech over security fears

A leading U.S. nuclear weapons laboratory recently discovered its computer systems contained some Chinese-made network switches and replaced at least two components because of national security concerns, a document shows.

The discovery raises questions about procurement practices by U.S. departments responsible for national security. The U.S. government and Congress have raised concerns about Huawei and its alleged ties to the Chinese military and government. The company, the world’s second-largest telecommunications equipment maker, denies its products pose any security risk or that the Chinese military influences its business. Continue reading