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The Great U.S.-China Tech War

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Publication Details

Paperback / 54 pages
ISBN: 9781641771184
AVAILABLE: 3/31/2020

The Great U.S.-China Tech War

The United States and China are locked in a “cold tech war,” and the winner will end up dominating the twenty-first century.

Beijing was not considered a tech contender a decade ago. Now, some call it a leader. America is already behind in critical areas.

It is no surprise how Chinese leaders made their regime a tech powerhouse. They first developed and then implemented multiyear plans and projects, adopting a determined, methodical, and disciplined approach. As a result, China’s political leaders and their army of technocrats could soon possess the technologies of tomorrow.

America can still catch up. Unfortunately, Americans, focused on other matters, are not meeting the challenges China presents. A whole-of-society mobilization will be necessary for the U.S. to regain what it once had: control of cutting-edge technologies. This is how America got to the moon, and this is the key to winning this century.

Americans may not like the fact that they’re once again in a Cold War–type struggle, but they will either adjust to that reality or get left behind.


About the Author

Gordon G. Chang lived and worked in Asia for almost two decades. He is the author of Nuclear Showdown: North Korea Takes On the World and The Coming Collapse of China.

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Nowhere is America so far behind China as in the race to build the world’s next – the fifth – generation of wireless telecommunications networks.

“Not since the invention of gunpowder has China led the world in the introduction of a disruptive new technology, and the United States still can’t believe that it has been leapfrogged,” wrote David Goldman, the American writer and thinker, in Tablet in March 2019, referring to 5G. “For years the conventional wisdom held that the Chinese only could copy but not innovate. That wisdom has now been proven wrong.”

The Chinese have raced ahead in 5G in large part because they made it “a central plank” of their industrial planning process, including it in both the 13th Five-Year Plan, which covers the half-decade ending in 2020, and the Made in China 2025 initiative. Chinese technocrats announced the addition of 5G to CM2025, as the now-notorious plan is known in China, in January 2018. Chinese leader Xi Jinping also made 5G a part of his Belt and Road Initiative when in May 2017 he announced the “Digital Silk Road.” Wireless will feature prominently in the 14th Five-Year Plan, on the drafting board now.

There is a prize for the country controlling tomorrow’s wireless communication networks. According to forecaster Stratfor, 5G is nothing less than “the technology that will drive the world’s economy in the decade to come.” That bold assessment is obviously correct: 5G, due to speeds 2,000 times faster than existing 4G networks, will permit near-universal connectivity. Homes, vehicles, machines, robots, and just about everything else will be linked and communicating with each other. That’s what is now called the Internet of Things.

Imagine a world where Beijing is connected to most devices around the planet. That gives China, already “the new OPEC of data,” access to even more of it.

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