Retaliatory Attacks, Online

Standing against Beijing, or even alerting foreign governments to trade issues, can carry serious repercussions.

Comments: 181

  1. Given the fact that the US can name specific people as perpetrators, they must have used their elves in the NSA to gather a lot of inside information from the Chinese government.

  2. Good for these companies, and good for the US government for indicting Chinese cyberspies - someone's gotta stand up to Chinese rule-breaking.

  3. I thought that after Stuxnet and the Snowden revelations, that the US was number one in cyber rogue actions. So what is this? You mean that we are not the baddest and wickedest? You gotta be kiddin' me!

  4. I think you misunderstand the distinction between state-vs.-state activity like destroying Iranian centrifuges, as opposed to undertaking activity on behalf of American companies. Does the CIA steal marketing plans from Cherry Automotive (in China) and give them to General Motors? I think not.

  5. @ M. Wilson: Why would they bother? Chinese companies have little that is worth stealing, except for the things that they stole from the US and other developed countries. And that stuff is subject to intellectual property laws - except in lawless China where there is only the rule of money.

  6. I would put frying a few contraband centrifuges well below stealing for personal gain.

  7. America has brought this unto itself. Our appetite for cheap goods has fed this tiger and has grown accustomed to it. It is high time to circle the wagons, bring back "Made In the US" and as it is posted in the jungle "do not feed the wild."

  8. Keep in mind that this is a two way street. China needs US markets every bit as much as we need their cheap labor. I find the administration's pivot to Asia, and yesterday's indictments somewhat encouraging.

  9. The problem with that kind of protectionism, Mario is that it has many far reaching implications in a global economy. Respectfully, this isn't 1985 and Reagan isn't president. We have to tread carefully here. It seems to me that this tine has come for some sort of "Oslo Accords" of internet/cyber activity to which ALL nations should decide whether or not to sign. The alternative, I'm afraid, is humanity's first cyber war. It's just my opinion and I hope I'm wrong.

  10. Or at least 'made in a democracy.'

  11. The headline suggests a fearful response from American companies, but that is an erroneous and irresponsible reading. The report itself and other sources suggest just the opposite, that American companies by and large are defiant and determined in their opposition to Chinese theft.

    They understand that if they don't hang together, they'll hang alone.

  12. Finally, the US government calls the Chinese government on its state-sponsored, criminal hacking activities. Let this not be a one-off stand.

  13. I suppose the US still have the moral high ground of how hacked/illegally collected data are been used. So the Chinese are using it to punish foreign companies while the US is using it to monitor allies and trade partners.

    I'm just slightly confused, which one is worse?

  14. I strongly favor a trade war with China.

  15. If you behave as though everything was being monitored, you'll be fine. As a computer professional, I know how companies can and should protect themselves. Those who lost data, didn't. Nothing we can do to protect those who don't protect themselves.

    As for the rule of law, leave that to the courts. I have no emotional reaction whatsoever to this perpetual spy v spy big game.

    I write this hoping a woman's opinion can be taken seriously by the NY Times.

  16. I have no emotional reaction whatsoever to this perpetual spy v spy big game.

    You aren't one of the thousands upon thousands of American workers that have had their job stolen by the Chinese government are you? We should be outraged, absolutely outraged - yet you have no emotional reaction?

  17. No, Jay. This computer scientist wasn't greedy and went to work today.

  18. No. I am a programmer who went to work today

  19. AmCham China says "We urge both governments to reach agreement on the rules of the road regarding cybersecurity ..." Seriously?? That's the funniest thing I've read all morning*. American officials have shown no respect whatever for existing U.S. "rules" on cybersecurity. Apparently the Chinese simply have no rules.

    *except for the Western executive who insisted on anonymity after stating "I always assume every email I send is read, every conversation I have is listened to"

  20. A studious approach to any endeavors has always been a hallmark of the Chinese. This has led to a blending of policies and practices from strikingly successful schools of thought: the Han and Tang dynasties, capitalism and the Triad.

  21. "But behind the acrimony between governments lay an uncomfortable risk for many American companies, as well as businesses from the European Union and elsewhere: Standing against Beijing, or even alerting foreign governments to trade issues, can carry serious repercussions."
    Really? Well how about this for a repercussion; Less trade with China! Less dependence upon a nation that is literally hell bent on destroying American industry, stealing American technology and industrial secrets and could care less about American security interests.
    China is for China.
    America must stand for itself or capitulate to communist rule.
    Start withdrawing American business and relationships and see who blinks.

  22. Ah, but 'racing to the bottom' is the path of least resistance. Clawing your way to some moral high ground is hard for our business people. It's not how they were trained in B school.
    Look at the difficulty we and the Europeans are having surmounting the comparitively small business 'interests' in Russia. Imagine the hue and cry if US corporations were expected to carry out sanctions against China, 1000X the bilateral trade.

  23. I'd like to see that fight.

  24. The key to making sure American companies are protected is making the components here, not China, and assembling them here. That's wisdom. The lust for low cost labor will defeat these companies if they continue to kowtow to officials in corrupt nations, and ultimately, will harm the American economy. China is not our friend and never has been, so I commend the U.S. Justice Department's actions. Let's hope American executives take heed, bring jobs home, and stop nurturing an antagonistic force.

  25. I agree - the US should only make friends and trade with English-speaking democratic countries who fawn on the peace-loving and benevolent US government.

  26. ..."the definition of national security ought not include economic interests." AmCham China

    And yet, of course, it totally does.

  27. The American companies want to protect their shareholders. I feel certain that risks were assessed (considering the lack of patent protection in countries where there is heavy off-shoring, it should have been done!). These companies are no babes in the woods. They know that if they have the work done in China they can warehouse employees in dormitories and rouse then in the middle of the night with a cup of tea and some biscuits to get to work and ensure some US marketing advantage is achieved- didn't Apple do that last year? (Or was that a different company?) They cannot get that in the US; we have employment laws, OSHA, DOL, EPA, etc. and complying with our laws costs money. This has me thinking, why is our federal government trying to make it easier for these American companies to take this work OUT of the US?

  28. While this article raises grave and founded concerns about China's government behavior, I cannot not think about the damage done by the NSA leadership to our country. By covertly breaching our constitutional rights and founding values, they have undermined our government ability to stand the moral high ground on important topics such as the one developed in this article . There is something pathetic about AG Holder's claim. Instead of being safer and stronger, I feel our country is more vulnerable.

  29. America won the Cold War with the Soviet Union when the Soviet Union collapsed and chose a form of democracy and free market private capitalism as part of the world economic system. Gorbachev tried and failed to reform the old system via openness and restructuring. Russia has become a closed corrupt crony capitalist oligarchy.

    America "won" the Cold War with the People's Republic of China when Deng Xiaoping chose to abandon Marxist-Leninist-Maoist economics in favor of free market capitalism and to join the world economy. China has held on to the Communist one party political model while engaging the world. State owned enterprises plus closed corrupt crony capitalist oligarch autocrats are doing what humans do by nature and nurture.

    America is cyber spying on China for national security reasons that include socioeconomics, science, technology, education and politics. The problem of state owned enterprise in China tends to blur the distinction that America is trying to make. Soviet espionage was key to their nuclear proliferation. And the birth and rise of the American space program was a gift from Nazi German scientists.

    With the revelations of Edward Snowden about massive spying on Americans and foreigners it is typically bizarre and paradoxical that the American government is mostly concerned about commerce. Instead of liberty and freedom.

    China can retaliate in kind against America where it hurts most in the profit and loss column. Big Money over Big Brother.

  30. This is theft. But are American companies any more moral when, like GM they allow dangerous cars to be sold, or like Duke Oil, they poison the water for thousands --or like BP they ruin the gulf and refuse to spend to clean it up, or like the fracking companies that won't publish the chemicals they use. How moral are the tobacco companies who would be selling to children here if allowed, but have moved into emerging markets instead?

    Immorality in business -- not just a problem in China.

  31. Yes, but....there really is no comparison. This is false equivalency.

  32. Of course. By definition America is he only force for good, freedom and democracy in the world. Therefore there is no equivalece between what we do which good by definition, and what the rest does. What we don't seem to understand is that the right to define has already sleep from our hands. nobody believes US anymore.

  33. "They [US companies] have also faced legal cases alleging corruption, the sale of tainted food and other improprieties for which Chinese companies, particularly state-owned enterprises, are seldom investigated." Pot meet kettle. The US charges foreign banks with criminal activity, not their own. The only Goldman Sachs employee to be charged with a crime since 2007 has been a Frenchman. And so on and so on. Perhaps the NYT should do an article why the American justice system ressembles so closely the Chinese?

  34. The greed of US executives and large investors nutured this monster, turning a blind eye as it grew, along with their own personal holdings. Is anything really going to be done about this, other than some posing and grandstanding? Don't hold your breath. Our 'leaders' are making too much money out of this to stop it.

  35. Chinese executives need no lessons from American executives on how to lie, cheat and steal their way to riches. Our corporate executives are bad enough - just be glad they usually don't take lessons from Chinese executives.

  36. You have to know three things about China:
    1) Spying is as old as the country itself. In "The Art of War", Sun Tzu, the famous 5th Century BC military strategist, dedicates a whole chapter to the art of intelligence gathering. Ever since, wars, millitary or trade, have been won and lost of the success of spying.
    2) Trade secret has always been literally a life or death issue to the Chinese. In ancient time, whoever reveals the secret of silk making is punished by death. Family with great trade secret would only teach is to sons, never to daughters, fearing that the secrets would be leaked to outside when the girls got married.
    3) For China, competition is a zero sum game: if you win, I lose. So China has always engaged in imperialistic domination, whether in military or commerce. Napoleon wisely advised to "let the China dog sleep."
    As Sun Tzu said, "understand your enemy and you will win a hundred battle", it is ways past time the US has to wake up and understand what China is and wants to stay in the game.

  37. You're on the right track, but for the wrong reason. You have to understand China, but what you have to understand is that A) They are pushing a 100% employment policy for political stability reasons at the expense of the rest of the world, and B) They don't respect your property rights any more than they respect your place in a line. Seriously, have you ever tried to form a line in China? It's impossible.

    Put together, we have an actor that cannot in the long run be part of the collaborative regimes like WTO that have been built up over the past century.

  38. What I'd really like to read is the next story that describes the US government's response to Chinese hacking over the past five years, how they filtered all IP addresses from the Chinese hacking groups, how they rerouted hacking attempts to a honeypot, how they fed bogus information back in response, how they warned target US companies, and assisted with security improvements. But alas, National Security concerns would preclude such a story about either the actions or inactions that have lead to five years of lost technological secrets.

  39. Accuracy vs. Precision

    “Accuracy refers to validity ... the degree of correspondence to reality or the truth, if you will. Precision, on the other hand, refers to tolerance ... the degree of exactness. One can be precise but inaccurate, or one can be accurate but imprecise. One, for example, can measure the temperature outside to one-hundredth of a degree of precision, but, if the thermometer is faulty, one’s measurement can be off by several degrees ... in that case, one would be precise but inaccurate. Conversely, one could measure the temperature to the nearest two degrees and be accurate but imprecise.” -from the semi-fictional novel, Inescapable Consequences

    In cyberspace, the use of the term, “to hack”, for malware may border on the accurate but it imprecise. To hack merely is to gain unauthorized intrusion into someone else’s system, implying without malice. To gain unauthorized intrusion into someone else’s system explicitly with malice is “to crack”.

    Precision in language allows precision in communication. Precision in language allows precision in cognition.

  40. The use of the term "hacking" in place of "cracking" has become common coin of the realm for designating the same thing.

  41. Start directing as much of your purchasing power as you possibly can away from Chinese products, if only until the relations improve. In any event, we need to restore American manufacturing to support job creation (not just data manipulation, and financial services). My antennae went up when we had the contaminated pet food problem a few years ago. I did a review of my shopping behaviors, especially food.

  42. The Chinese government is acting no differently than the Barbary Pirates. Thomas Jefferson would not tolerate such depredations against US commerce, and neither should we.

  43. After Russia on Ukraine, antagonising China on the South China Sea and now on "cyber spying" is the dumbest action of this administration. As a consequence Russia and China are now building a new relationship that will be hugely detrimental to the US.

    It would serve Obama to read On China by Henry Kissinger for a better understanding on how to manage diplomatic relations with China. But that would mean some modesty on his part which is preposterous.

  44. I guess we should just allow the spying, huh?

    And Henry Kissinger, really? The man that was responsible for authorizing Pinochet's coup in which a democratically elected president was murdered in Chile. Along with another 40,000 people. That Henry Kissinger?

    Believe me, China will understand fully what Obama's administration is doing. They will understand it just fine. It will change their behavior. Especially when companies suspend business or do business elsewhere when they can.

  45. Those of us engaged in international trade matters in China know the Chinese are using their military and state arms to steal foreign technology and turn it over to their state-owned companies and favored private companies. We see it everyday in myriad ways. Beijing is out and out lying.

    The difference is that the US cyberspies for national security reasons but the Chinese cyberspy for economic gain on the macro and micro levels. There is no difference between what Beijing is doing and actual breaking and entering and theft. Let Beijing act affronted but many of us know they are bald-faced liars.

  46. Someone has determined that The Art of War doesn't apply to business? Then what is capitalism about for goodness sake?

    Of course, we have the proud example of Big Pharma sleazily bribing folks in China to inflate the cost of drugs.

  47. I do not believe that you are who you claim to be

  48. There have been numerous allegations of the NSA engaging in industrial spying for the benefit of US companies: Siemens and Huawei are two prominent companies on the receiving end of USA industrial spying.

    If you look further back in US history -- from the Banana Wars to the Iraq War, there is no question that the US government have been carrying on a long tradition of being in cahoots with US corporations.

  49. The distinction between economic espionage (good) and industrial espionage (bad) is a false one. It's nothing more than an weak ploy by the U.S. to justify its blatant hypocrisy.

    We know that the U.S. government spies on other countries for advantage in trade negotiations. We also know that the U.S. government's priorities in its trade negotiations are dictated by U.S.-based multinational corporations.

    For example, the U.S. insurance and automobile industries and Wall St. are telling the USTR's office what concessions to extract from other countries now participating in the Trans-Pacific Partnership talks.

    So the U.S. government's spying is intended to benefit U.S. corporations on a macroeconomic scale, giving them far greater advantage than the Chinese military gives Chinese enterprises by stealing industrial secrets here and there.

    And the notion that anyone should simply trust the U.S. government when it says it doesn't engage in Chinese-style industrial espionage is patently absurd.

  50. To the contrary, your examples and arguments are false ones.

    A government listening to its constituents before negotiating international agreements that affect them is simply representational government.

    A government negotiating the best deals it can with other countries in its own self interest is simply normal diplomacy.

    And countries spying on each other is as old as history itself.

    But what the Chinese are doing - using their spying capabilities to steal information from non-Chinese companies to share with Chinese companies so that they will have the upper hand in negotiations and free intellectual property, is something else entirely and should be fought vigorously.

  51. Your arguments are completely off base and self serving. You neatly categorize US spying as an acceptable and regularly practiced behavior throughout the world, yet what the Chinese have been accused of as unacceptable behavior. You clearly fail to realize that people have been stealing technology from one another predating the formation of any government body. Besides, what makes you think US corporations are not doing the same thing with NSA collected data?

  52. Just because China has the largest population on earth, it doesn't mean that it can set its own rules. Even if it is the world's second largest economy, it still needs to abide by international law, if it wants to earn respect and gain popularity in the global community.
    Putin is visiting China this week. He must be gloating over Eric Holder's indictment. China and Russia will have no qualm to join forces against the West, - the US in particular.

  53. Too ludicrous for words. The US engages in massive surveillance at home, eavesdropping on foreign leaders, and, as NYT recently revealed, employs the FBI to gather informers in order to launch cyberattacks. Whoa, more than the pot calling the kettle black, the US stands as hypocrite #1 on this issue of cyberspying. Then to have the chutzpah to offer a fatuous distinction in justifying its own activities--the US "takes the position that it has been spying to gather military, political and economic intelligence...fundamentally different from and less of an intrusion on civil liberties than spying to gain a commercial advantage"--takes the cake.

    Spying is spying. Period. Only in the US is "commercial advantage" seen as a more heinous crime than "gather[ing] military, political and economic intelligence." What this tells me is that the US perceives all too clearly its own DECLINE as a political-economic-ideological power, and hence, is turning to increased MILITARY action to maintain--a losing cause in a now multipolar world--its unilateral global hegemony. Why can't it live gracefully as a global citizen, rather than engaging in war, intervention, regime change (Ukraine), etc.?

    Is it because of an historical tendency--inscribed in the nation's DNA--toward conquest, xenophobia, racism--combined with the fetishism of/for technology? Snowden deserves a place on Mt. Rushmore, Obama, Holder, Clapper, Brennan, not even the base camp.

  54. For a long time, the US has possessed the technology and essential infrastructure needed to conduct large-scale systematic cyber thefts and surveillance on foreign government leaders, businesses and individuals. This is a fact which the whole world knows. The US' deceitful nature and its practice of double standards when it comes to cyber security have long been exposed, from the Wikileaks incident to the Edward Snowden affair.

  55. A larger, and ultimately perhaps more interesting, question is how this illuminates the folly of American laws which claim extraterritorial reach. The cyber-spies in China appear to have been doing nothing that was illegal under Chinese law, just as our cyber-munchkins at Ft. Meade do not break US law when they spy on foreigners. It is only disruptive of international legal comity when a country purports to make illegal conduct in another jurisdiction which is not illegal in that jurisdiction. With its technical, military, and economic muscle, America expects every other nation to cooperate in the enforcement of the US's extraterritorialism--and it often gets its way with weak [Thailand] or slavish [Great Britain] countries--but that is a triumph of force, not logic or law.

  56. Wrong assumption.

    What China allegedly is doing is actively participating in theft of intellectual property for commercial gain It would be folly to think that theft is not punishable in China.

    This is not a question of American extraterritoialism ( whatever that is). It is a question of international business transactions requiring parties to behave in accordance with international business treaties and accords. You can't do deals if there are no mutually accepted rules.

  57. What exactly is the Obama Administration saying? It would have been ok if the Chinese were spying on private American citizens for noncommercial purpose? Does he think it is ok to spy as long as the spying wasn't done for commercial advantages? Is he placing a higher priority on commercial espionages than civil liberty?

    Obama is a wolf in sheepskin. At least Bush II did not hide who he was and his indifference to our civil liberty.

  58. Exactly. I also have difficulty in understanding the logic in this article. If the claimed hackers do not pass the stolen documents to any companies of commercial interests, then the stealing would be OK?

  59. In your highly theoretical scenario, if China were hacking/tapping Uighur separatist groups in the US to get the 'meta data' of what nubers they were calling/texting and the US govt found out about it through a Chinese 'Snowden' I imagine we would protest but not indict.
    As ham-handed as the NSA has been they are (still) only chasing terrorists.

  60. Spying on other countries for military purposes is as morally unacceptable as war. But any country that doesn't defend against military spying would be reckless. And any country that has the capability to spy on military enemies does so.

    A military that spies on companies for strictly commercial gain and to steal private companies' secrets is playing outside the bounds of commercial good faith and fair dealing. What China, as a government, is doing is theft.

    It is a fair question to ask why the US Government should protect private companies from theft, especially if the companies are getting a free ride tax-wise.

  61. It seems unbelievable to me that the U.S., following the Snowden revelations, can have the arrogance to charge Chinese military personnel with crimes for industrial spying. Snowden revealed numerous instances of U.S. spying for economic, rather than security reasons (i.e. virtually all of the tapping of Angela Merkel's cellphone). The idea that our government's industrial spying is for national interests while China's is for petty industrial interests is ludicrous. First of all, many of the Chinese companies who would profit from such spying are owned by the Chinese government. Secondly, we know that the U.S. conducts such spying, but we have no idea whether the data they collect remains within the security agencies or is given (even as broad-stroke updates from our government to business leaders) to the U.S. business sector (whose representatives permeate our government agencies anyway). Such spying is wrong and needs to be opposed, but we should be turning a spotlight on our own practices, not denying them trying to focus attention on those of others.

  62. china is where snowden fled first, carrying roughly 1.5 million documents regarding US cyberespionage capabilities, methods and targets, along with defense and security information completely unrelated to domestic surveillance.

    a coincidence, surely.

  63. "Finally, the US government calls the Chinese government on its state-sponsored, criminal hacking activities. Let this not be a one-off stand."

    Duh! Doesn't anyone else see the hypocrisy here? Thanks to new Snowden documents, we now know that the NSA is spying and collecting EVERY communication in and out of the Bahamas, as well as Mexico, the Philippines, and Kenya and a 4th unnamed country, with the full cooperation and connivance of the telecom providers. Providers who were shocked I say, shocked to learn they were hacked. Providers who work with the DEA to use their equipment. Then the DEA gave the NSA full use of the equipment to "get it all" swept up and saved. Ostensibly for drug running. Not the banks who sanction drug and gun running and money laundering, no. Not the tax dodging elite with their off-shore accounts. Nope. Just the little guys. The small fry who don't qualify for the Too-Big-To-Jail, DOJ Holder-sanctioned Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Pass.

    Remember the computers intercepted and hacked by the NSA, installed with spyware and then sent on their way to the buyer?

    Anyone lacking information on this subject need only go to https://firstlook.org/theintercept/ to read the files firsthand and weep with joy.

    It would have been a better editorial if the NY Times could balance their
    faux outrage with comparable information that informs their readership with what their own government is doing against them, with it's "state-sponsored, criminal hacking activities."

  64. The NY Times has covered the Snowden disclosures extensively.

    So far there hasn't been any disclosures that the US Government has stolen proprietary secrets from Chinese companies for commercial gain.

  65. Holder's deadpan comedy routine yesterday drew howls of laughter around the World. What utter nonsense it was and is still.

  66. What is the difference between spying to gather economic intelligence and spying to gain commercial advantage? If there was, say, a rivalry between a European and an American plane manufacturers (let's call them Airbus and Boeing to simplify), would the American government intervene at the diplomatic level to close deals? Would this intervention also include data obtained from the NSA?

  67. That any American would knowingly and willingly sacrifice their liberty to conduct business in a place where one's every move is watched and word listened to, and simply toss it off as the "cost of doing business", is nauseating. One more sign of how far as a nation we have fallen in the name of profit.

  68. Technically both are doing the same: Break into computers, steal sensitive documents, and leave Trojan horses.

    When people catch a thief, do they really care about, or believe, his claimed intention?

  69. It is ironically comical. All of these countries spying on one another and all claiming the purest of intentions. Maybe they should go back to using paper and a typewriter, remember those.

  70. As Mussolini said, fascism is just corporatism by another name. China has a fascist system, and therefore can be counted on to use state power to enhance its large businesses.

    Sadly, America is not far behind.

  71. "If China has begun retaliating against companies that seek the enforcement of free trade rules, as the indictment suggests, that could allow Beijing to begin creating an international trading system in which China has more latitude to pursue its own policies, Mr. Zweig added."

    Oh, this must be bad but the US creating, enforcing and pursuing its own policies is not bad. I suspect China is less concerned about commercial expropriation than spying on its government while in the US the opposite is true. I can see China passing a law making it unlawful for any other nation to monitor its cyberactivities regardless of purpose and making it a capital offense if done for a political reason with indictments coming soon after for the arrest and prosecution of many of the major US figures. The problem with playing games is if there are no established rules, then each player can make them up as the game progresses. While the US may still control the chessboard, China is not in a losing position and most agree that it will dominate the board after some plays.

  72. The chessboard is only a piece of decorated cardboard without rules that all players adhere to.

  73. Is cyber-theft wrong? If hacking into companies' records to steal information, and especially as payback for contesting policies and laws that are counter to the intent of the WTO, is illegal or unethical or simply unwelcome, then the US has the right to name and shame those it believes are responsible. As do other countries. Who should stand back and countenance theft? We have seen months of news stories on Chinese hacking; the US government's action today is hardly some knee-jerk Hail Mary. And if China wants to name US groups or individuals it can show are doing the same, let it do so. The worst thing of all would be for hacking and cyber-theft to run amok with no one saying or doing anything about it. Then the world would slide (even more) into a morass of corruption and resignation such as we see in individual countries where rule of law means less than the paper it's written on. US government eavesdropping activities have been widely reported - mostly by US media. There is no rule or code to suggest that the US cannot call out other nations that are determined, unapologetic spies and/or thieves; and there is no rational or objective basis for suggesting otherwise.

  74. This is a monster of our own creating. The price we are paying for the high demand of inexpensive goods.

    Amazingly, it is possible still, to find many many items that are not made in China , rather the USA. It just takes time to research and hunt for the USA products. I always try to do so....

  75. You know what? Their is a distinction between the spying the U.S. does and the spying that China does. The U.S. despite what people commenting below say spies only for defensive and national security purposes. I fail to see any mention in any comment below on a specific case where the U.S. stole a Chinese companies most sensitive data? Meaning that companies cost analysis, cash flows, legal conversations etc.. On the other hand I see China stealing this information which has no national security or defensive purposes at all other than to allow Chinese companies to get the technology for free and not have to spend time and money investing in R&D.

    It's quite ridiculous how people below are inserting Snowden into the discussion that has nothing to do at all with company's intellectual property. The U.S. DOES NOT STEAL COMPANIES INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY. China does and will continue to do so as long as countries and companies faily to fight back in the WTO and through their court systems.

    And while China may be such a huge market right now over the next few decades their population will be shrinking and that will only accelerate due to the one child policy. I advocate that the U.S. intelligence community should start striking back and hacking Chinese companies and to delete the information they obtained illegally.

    The hacking China does is and has cost thousands of U.S. jobs. The hacking of Chinese defense computers and telecommunications equipment makers has not cost ANY jobs.

  76. From today's Guardian i see two things that China is the largest PC market in the world and that the Chinese government is the largest buyer of Computer software in China. Today the Chines government announced it won't purchase PC's that have Windows 8. I'd say that reprisals have come early this year. As some one commented elsewhere 'why wouldn't you want an operating system approved by the NSA'.

  77. Yes, I do agree the US has been spying on the Chinese but can they show us what and how much they have lost while the US was spying on them. The US surely can, in the trillions. Just because China's culture is different from ours is no excuse for it. Two words come to mind, "Being Civilized or Uncivilized". A "civilized" society could distinguish the difference in spying and stealing technology for the sole purpose of having an advantage and an "uncivilized" society can't.

  78. It only shows the US has much "better" lawyers and media who can prove anything they want to prove. For example, WDM in Iraq.

    In this regard, China is catching up quickly with the US. :) There is a good chance that the Chinese government will release a report to show trillions of loss from US hacking. Maybe they already did ...

    And seriously, do you think the world will buy this logic? European nations, for example, are more concerned with US hacking (who is technically more capable) than China hacking.

  79. Yes, I do think the world will buy this logic. Money lost gets everyones attention including other countries that have been robbed. When China proves the innovation (if any) it has lost because of US spying, I'll rest my case.

  80. How can you say this? What about our Big Pharma companies bribing doctors in China. They got caught, didn't they? (Of course, Big Pharma is always blatant and just buys their way out of getting caught.)

  81. So the USA can electronically spy on the entire world with impunity to satisfy its paranoid perverse perspective, but if China does it to satisfy its corporate domination ambitions, it’s ‘different’?

    Kinda like how the USA can invade Iraq and Afghanistan for no reason other than anger and misplaced revenge (and making Eisenhower's M.I.C. wealthy) but when Russia does it out of historic vested interest in Ukraine, that’s ‘different’?

    Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. America: Think Different! ™

    (for everyone else, it’s called hypocrisy)

    Electronic spying is wrong regardless of who does it. Let's start from that assumption and discuss....

  82. In today's America, casting a wide information drag net on its own and other countries' citizens are acceptable "intelligence gathering" for "security". But when it comes to corporate "intellectual property" it is sacrilegious! Not to mention US does its own fair share of industrial espionage (search ECHELON).

  83. I don't know what it is with Americans but they appear to believe that whilst they can use any means of espionage, political manoeuvring, back door diplomacy and even engage is acts of war in the name of protecting themselves anybody else who indulges is such practices is a criminal or a lunatic or both.

  84. It is ironic that ALCOA has been targeted in this probe. The corporation has committed a significant amount of capital and production resources to China. At the same time the company has been closing and curtailing operations in the US and Europe. China's theft of proprietary processes and trade secrets adds an increment of external cost to the Chinese investments probably not considered in the foreign country risk portion of the investment decisions.

  85. "China’s surveillance of its own citizens is so pervasive that some Western executives doing business in China say that they accept it as almost routine and do not worry about it. 'People just assume everything they do is being watched — I always assume every email I send is read, every conversation I have is listened to,' said a Western executive...."

    NSA surveillance of US citizens is more pervasive than anything in China. Every email not only is electronically read but also is stored. Every telephone conversation not only is electronically monitored but also is stored.

    The only difference between the Chinese surveillance regime police state and the Bush/Obama surveillance regime is that the latter violates the Constitution and laws of its own nation. Alas, the unindicted felons running the NSA and CIA care nothing for the Constitution and laws, and the "former Constitutional Scholar" does nothing to defend and uphold the Constitution and laws.

  86. While the NSA issue is valid, your points about every e mail and phoncon being noted and stored needs more reference than you said it.

    You may want to educate yourself on the pervasiveness of Chinese internal security.

  87. "NSA surveillance of US citizens is more pervasive than anything in China."
    While I do not deny that NSA surveiilance is far mor pervarsive than is should be, I strongly disagree with the quoted sentence. Several reports highlighted the actual reading, analyzing, and blocking of communications in China.

  88. A first step to stopping this kind of attack is to get rid of Windows. That may sound like heresy and certainly will cost a bit more in the short term. But moving to Mac OS X or Linux will make these attacks very much more difficult.

    If this is what it takes to save your company - it's cheap.

  89. But isn't it true that if everyone switched to MacOS or Linux, the advantage would go away? Isn't the reason those platforms are still relatively secure that they are also relatively OBscure? If they became the standard then tools to hack them would become more available. Or are you saying they're inherently harder to hack?

  90. It has been a well established fact that China and Chinese companies have always preferred to steal technology rather than paying for R&D or licensing of foreign technology. Any corporation doing business in China will be pilfered its technology and expertise before being thrown out of the associated Chinese market.

    Reminder: China plays by its own rules, for its own benefit, couldn't care less about criticism, and readily denies reality when it suits China's purpose.

  91. How is the US any different? The US invades any country it wants, bombs anyone in any country it wants and the US has it's reasons for doing what it does.

    I'm sure the country on the receiving end of the bombs, the invasion would disagree with Americans reasons for doing it but does that stop American of course not.

    Why can the US do any of this simple because it can.
    Why can China continue to do what it does because it can.

    The difference is China isn't pointing fingers, this all started with "everyone spies" when the US was caught spying on Angela Merkel. The Germans clearly weren't happy when they learned that they were being spied on, is that going to top the US probably not.

    Why does the US want every country on the planet to get rid of it's nuclear arsenal but not themselves?

    Because that is the only thing that will make the US take pause and consider the consequences of their actions.

    The US has taught every country in the world one important lesson, if you can't get away with it no harm in trying.

  92. There is in fact a difference between espionage intended to protect the security of the citizens of a nation...and "espionage" [read: theft] that targets companies for the sole purpose of stealing trade secrets and confidential communications in order to gain competitive advantage in the business arena. China does it with impunity, and it's time they're called out for it.

  93. It's clear the anti-Americans want to make this about America, thus the many comments that equate US spying as being the same as China and that we "deserve" what we got from Chinese spy operations....but of course this idea that US spying is the same with Chinese is just so much bunkum that the anti-Americans are able to ignore. The US doesn't spy for Microsoft, Wall Mart or Apple Computers. That is to say the US Federal Government does not send out federal spies to conduct espionage operations with the goal of securing Chinese corporate secretes that can then be turned over to US firms so that they can exploit this in "the marketplace". This is what China is doing. And instead of saying good one US, you just struck a blow against a type of espionage that could undermine the world economy what we see is the sad and expected use of false equivocation being deployed to hit at the perpetual "bad guy" the US. How sad that even in doing something that if asked, most would agree is a good thing, that America can't even get a tip of the hat from its hyper critics. Not me, I say good job Obama, Justice Department and US Federal Government. Thank you for making a stand against Chinese espionage.

  94. In China's view it's all the same thing. Since in China the one party gov't controls everything, military, commercial, civilian, "private", public, to them there is no difference. This is the handicap democracies work under when dealing with neo-fachist countries. We must use our advantages against them. That is wide open gov't and information disclosure coupled with public opinion. They don't "get" public opinion. If social media campaigns were started up against Chinese products that were developed from stolen info they'd have no defense. Then the American companies that moved their manufacturing to China and were then ripped off and undercut might consider moving some of those jobs back here. (Silly American companies are giving up their first born children for a promise of a meal in a 5 star restaurant today and chance to be put on the list for possible meals in the future). Our other advantage is that we innovate, they copy and steal. We should give every incentive available to companies that innovate here and stay here. Apple, are you listening?

  95. Great! Wonderful! Let's just keep doing business over there. Ship more US jobs and technology to these thieves! But the corporate masters of the universe couldn't give a hoot about US workers as long as they can put a few more dollars into their pockets.

  96. U.S. and multi-national corporations gladly move jobs and production to China to attempt to gain entry into Chinese markets. Their sloppy adherence to vigorous security procedures and protection of trade secrets was surrendered for profits that are one way; to China and away from all their trading partners.

    Bring the jobs, design, and manufacturing back to the U.S. and send the Chinese the product catalogs and prices.

  97. Well said, but our business elite just aren't that smart. Plenty greedy, but short sighted.

  98. China has a point. As the Chinese like to use their economic clout as their greatest national weapon against others, economic secrets are, for them, indeed related to national security. But this fact doesn't excuse Chinese actions, it merely reinforces why our doing unrestricted business with them harms our national security.

  99. This is comical because the US does not really care about legal rights. They only want to use the issue in the press to hammer foreign powers. The front page media is what they worry about. This is a media Kabuki dance and not about actual rights. PBS "FRONTLINE" aired the subject of spying on the American public by the NSA, and if anyone noticed the elephant in the room, it was all about wall to wall lawyers, not technological expertise. The actual technical people are dummies as was demonstrated in a recent class action suite by IT engineers against Silicon Valley IT oligarchs.

  100. “People just assume everything they do is being watched — I always assume every email I send is read, every conversation I have is listened to,” said a Western executive, who insisted on anonymity because of the legal sensitivities of the issue."

    This is confusing. Is he talking about China, or the United States?

  101. The bottom line of any country's National Security is economics. Which puts the country above all for its security to keep on perpetuating the fundamentally flawed economic system. In the US thanks to the greed creed corporations, that the US Supreme Court has in its absurdity ruled as people, for their profits, non payment of taxes and cheap labor , has managed to outsource most the manufacturing to countries like China. Which does a better more cheaper and in many cases a better job in the production. As far as computers some over 90% of all sold in the US are made overseas. Where spy ware is imbedded. In many cases the same US companies and corporations that sell these computers to the US public then turn around and hide the facts from US consumers and the government.

    As far as subsidizing US government using taxpayer's money subsidize all kind of projects in big time mega agriculture, that ship millions of tons or corn, wheat, poultry, beef to name a few , once again perpetuate the fundamentally flawed economic system.
    Our big problem is the National Security Harbinger it self that is complicit and culpable in lying to the people with impunity and treat the people as imbeciles.
    What we have done is created a dilemma for our selves, from which there is no way out. Mind you I do not advocate or condone others countries to intrude and infiltrate our privacy or propriety information. Spying is an international curse and a crime. The end does not justify the means

  102. Not knowing the particulars of the cases (I don't mean the materials contained in the indictment), it is difficult not to feel outraged. However, this line between economic espionage versus national security is ridiculous. For instance, what possible security reason do we have in snooping on the Europeans. In fact, one of the main EU complaints about us in the Snowden affairs is that it is difficult to conduct TRADE discussions when all of their phones have been tapped. Other important examples being in the areas of energy ()including solar), information technology, or aerospace technologies where security and economic implications are inevitably intertwined. From a larger perspective, what are national security interests if not financial and what large financial interest doesn't affect national security? How the rules are made will be ultimately important in avoiding armed conflict. One way to solve this problem is for us to actively steal all the business strategies of the Chinese to bolster our positions--level the playing field so to speak since court actions are not likely to change much in the near future.

  103. Possible security reasons for spying on European allies?

    How about determining the strength or weakness of a country 's commitment to NATO? Or does anyone remember the run up to the Bush Invasion of Iraq? We spied on our allies to determine if they would be foolish enough to support the invasion.

    PS Stealing the Chinese business strategies is useless when we would just be stealing back what they stole from US companies.

  104. The Chinese business strategy is largely based on either copying us or following where we've led, so what are we stealing to get even?

  105. Longjons: I see a well-educated and reasonable man in you.

  106. Cheer up folks. If this cyber sabotage does not stop we will have a Sino/ American cold war. Better get ready.

  107. The Chinese know American business will sell it's soul for the almighty dollar. Unfortunately for those of us who do not want to have our lifestyles lowered to that of an average Chinese, there will be no recourse.....

  108. "With China now the world’s second-largest movie market, some Hollywood studios have begun making presentations to Chinese censors early in the production process for movies. They have also entered into joint ventures with Chinese state-controlled enterprises and even invited Chinese officials to participate in creative decisions at some filming locations to ensure that movies will not be barred from Chinese theaters."

    If any US state or government department sought such power over Hollywood, the studios would make full throat streams and howls.

  109. In foreign policy, the US always practice double standard to advance its own strategic interests. This hypocritical approach can no longer fool foreigners and Americans. There is no moral high grounds here. For the Obama administration to raise this issue so openly exposes its weakness and helplessness. Nothing will come out of the accusations. It is a dumb move.

  110. I think this is where the Republicans got some of there tactics, If you can't beat them... Cheat

  111. I long for the cold war relations with China--before our rat politicians and business traitors sold out American workers, opened our markets to cheap stuff and exported millions of manufacturing jobs.

  112. 150 years ago the Chinese said the exact same thing and stopped trading with aggressive nations and then British and American warships shows up at their ports. 70 years ago the Soviet said the same thing to the world's largest economy and trading nation and they are not around anymore.

    China is already by far the largest trading nation in the world and within 15 years will overtake the US as the biggest economy and be twice the size of US economy by 2050. You don't want to repeat the same mistake the Chinese and Russian did.

  113. If you study Chinese culture, you would understand that China bullies only those it judges will not defend themselves (not solely attributable to China of course, but well entrenched in Asian culture). China respects strength, no matter what kind. In their view, if you can be intimidated, bullied, stolen from with impunity, you deserve to be treated so.

    Will we ever stand up to them? Not until it comes down to an actual war, whether Cold or real. It's always been one of the fundamental misunderstandings between East and West. China, if pushed, will take the same "one chance" that Yamamoto took with Pearl Harbor, when his superiors ignored his warnings about provoking the US into an Asian war.

    There will continued to be a barrage of Chinese feints to see how far we can be pushed around. But at some point there will be a China/US equivalent of The Bay of Pigs. This was why the only president the USSR respected was Kennedy, because he faced them down. It will be interesting to see what the US does at this inevitable future crisis point.

  114. You know the future are not bright for two countries when its people don't know each other and begin to demonize the other. I think Jeane is too far gone but I suggest others go read well translated work of Four Great Classical Novels. All four were writen during the Ming and Qing Dynasty and greatly influenced East Asian cultures in addition to much earlier work by Confucius, Mencius and Laozi.

    Hollywood movies has been doing a decent job exposing Chinese to American cultures and family film such as Frozen let Chinese know not all American are Zero Dark Thirty bend on killing. On the other hand, very few American know China as well as Chinese know America. There are no Chinese movie, no Chinese shows and every Chinese scientific achievement is treated as some military gain. I bet most people don't even know US invaded China and Russia about a hundred years ago let along the number of time of invasion.

  115. Apparently, there is no human being yet born who could be trained in Computer Technology well enough so that he, or she, or they, could develop the skills necessary to prevent the "hacking" I keep reading about. It appears that there is no adult computer expert in the US anywhere who can combat this "digital reprisal". Permanently. Where have all the experts gone????

  116. The basic assumption that the US doesn't hack foreign computers for the private gain of US companies is fundamentally flawed.

    While it might be true that the US government doesn't directly pass secrets it gathers from spying on other countries to US companies, the American military industrial complex, which is privately run and operated, benefits enormously from decisions the US government makes on the basis of spying. While Boeing may not be given the specs of a Chinese plane the US found out though spying, Boeing gets something much more valuable, namely a juicy contract that is the direct result of such spying activity.

    Beyond this rather obvious example, history is strewn with examples where US government action, from spying to direct physical invasion, has contributed to the value of US firms, ranging from banana republic style incursions to Saudi oil fields protection.

  117. So your "rather obvious example" is that Boeing gets contracts as a direct result of spying. You lost me there.

  118. There is no fine line between US spying and China's targeted cybertheft. I personally think the NSA and our whole security apparatus is out of control, but that doesn't mean it's equivalent to China. I haven't seen any proof that the CIA targets Chinese companies it disagrees with. There's a big distinction between eavesdropping and stealing technology.

  119. BaadDonkey: How much do you really know other than reading sketches of leaks from Edward Snowden? We, as ordinary citizens, have no clue what the NSA/CIA are doing and what the Chinese govt. is doing. But we think we know and we like to express our foolish/ill-formulated opinions.

  120. I didn't notice any proof of US equivalency. This "everybody does it" opinion is poorly formulated indeed. China, and Russia when it was the USSR, have shown no compunction about stealing from the west going back to their creation in the early 20th Century. The US has shown that it will undermine governments, elected or not, that they deem enemies. You can argue about the ethics of either attitude, but let's not get into magical thinking and say it's all the same. Then there's the retaliatory cyber warfare against companies that complain about China's trade practices. Let's put it this way, if you think the NSA is secretive and too powerful, what's your take on a country where the military runs the biggest businesses AND the Intelligence apparatus.

  121. This situation is not looking good, but it's still under the dull radar screen of most Americans. Some posters here naively equate China's espionage activities with the defense intelligence activities of the US. There were those Americans in WW II who wanted to avoid confrontation.

    We simply opened our arms to those cheap Chinese goods. There were detractors to this strategy, but business won out. Most Americans want isolationism and those cheap goods. Americans are willing to trade their security for them.

    And no political party can address this issue because our political parties represent the people of the US who do not want them to address the issue. Business determines US foreign policy. The big irony is that the Republican Party that worships Reagan's anti-communist legacy and views itself as the religious party, has to allow business to do what it wants. The party that tags President Obama as a socialist is forced to stand down in the face of mercantile Chinese communist atheists.

    There doesn't seem to be any solution to this problem. It looks like either war, or this country allows Chinese espionage to continue (tightening the networks is not a geopolitical solution). This is a consequence that some US citizens do not want to face.

    Well, it was a Republican president who opened the door to China. If they're the Christian, business party, then let them fix this situation.

  122. I say we prop up Vietnam, India and Indonesia and buy good from them.

  123. Not really a security threat in conventional sense, but the Sino-US trade war seems to have certainly reached an economic war stage fought through mutually hurting cyber attacks. How else could China catch up with the US to be the world's number one economy?

  124. The chinese have nowhere caught up--they are where they are due to size alone. Your analogy would be to add up the rest of the world and say that the economy of the rest of the world is 5 times the size of the United States and finding that somehow unusual. I hope you don't teach any subject that involves numbers.

  125. This is a clear attempt to extend the influence of the Chinese government inside the US, and to erode American freedoms. They are sending a message that Americans who criticize China will be punished, even if they are based in the US.

    Meanwhile, by trading with China, we making it possible for them to become richer and more powerful.

  126. "Americans who criticize China will be punished, even if they are based in the US."
    Atleast they are not kidnapping people from the across the world for criticizing the US!!

  127. And who did we kidnap? You mean like the country, the Ukraine?

  128. Andrew Gore, formerly CEO of Intel, in Businessweek called several years ago for a trade war with China. Maybe it is time for a trade war with China. I think it is time for tariffs to protect all the companies damaged by Chinese hacking, dumping, and industrial and military espionage. Can we afford this trade war, if the Chinese then cut back their purchases of our Treasury bills? Who can explain that to me.

  129. Yet, our "smart" American businesses continue to want to get into China. Not bright. American business is NO LONGER the sharpest knife in the drawer. Needs to be sharpened in the worst possible way.

  130. China will never have what it so desparately craves... respect on the world stage. They may be feared- yes. But they will never be a true leader among nations since no one trusts them. They have risen quickly on the world stage by becoming an economic powerhosue- but they have done this by lying, stealing, cheating, intimidating. They will never be respected and they will always loose face when these things are brought out in the open. They can steal- but never invent.

  131. A true leader just spies on everyone.

  132. Marian,
    What do you base your prejudice on? It is the US that has lost respect in the world precisely for some of the reasons you list for China. As a German traveling with my US husband extensively in Asia, South America and Europe during the last ten years, I observed a growing hostility towards the US . I recommend educating yourself about China and its citizens, who often know more about us then we know about them.

  133. Chinese culture operates on substantially longer time perspectives than American culture. Over the past centuries, Chinese culture and others, such as Islamic cultures, invented and developed much making incredible contributions to advancing knowledge in multiple fields. As far as not inventing "anything" at present, assuming that's true, why would anyone want to reinvent the wheel, so to speak, when "wheels" are readily available? Human brainpower is uniform in the species' numerous iterations. Necessity, opportunity and, of course, chance brings about inventions and innovations.

  134. By now it is well-established the Chinese Govt & PLA hack foreign govt & private computers and spy for political, military & economic reasons. Anyone who does business in China risks having their computers hacked & spied on by the Chinese Govt. Even foreign tourists have their calls monitored & maybe even their computers hacked. The Chinese also spy on Tibet, Uighur & Chinese dissidents. China heavily censors its media and its domestic internet. Many dissidents have gone to jail for expressing their views online. Many journalists have been imprisoned & foreign journalists expelled for articles criticizing the Party. China has over 1 million people hired to monitor, censor and control domestic online content. People forget China is a one-party state where individuals have no civil rights (except on paper) and the military & police have unrestricted authority.

  135. I see the whole thing as the Chinese doing their due diligence. I can' saw we don't do it, even to our so-called close allies with the same DNA as ours. How many people are shocked by the indictment after the Edward Snowden drama? I doubt there are many.

  136. The difference in DNA among the peoples of the earth is negligible.

  137. Oh boo who, this is America, everything is fair in love and war, Greed, it's good, it was alright when you were winning, but now the Chinese are kicking your a$%, government, HELP ME. And the reason they are beating us, "EDUCATION"

  138. You must have forgotten that all their grad students want to come here...to study. As to parents who ignore the importance of education...they will cause their children to lose, and too many are in the US. This is why birth control and abortion are still valid, because we do not need people having children who are not prepared to give as much as they can to their children.

  139. American double standard

  140. Leave it to China to be backwards enough to cling to long discredited mercantilist policies. Somebody needs to buy Xi an economics book from this century. His policies only work as long as his trading partners let them and it's starting to look like his trading partners are getting tired of giving a pass.

  141. I'm afraid you're not right about mercantilist policies not working long enough to be worth pursuing. Both Germany and the United States worked long and hard during the nineteenth century to steal Britain's industrial secrets, and both have done very well for themselves.

  142. What's the point of making “wanted” posters of Chinese soldiers in uniform? Are they going to vacation in the US in their uniform and someone will say "That's General Sun Kailiang on a donkey's back touring the Grand Canyon". I cannot image how much time and money Obama and DOJ wasted surfing Chinese social network site finding these five, line up enough jury for a secrete grand jury indictment, and culculate the best time to cash this grandstanding opportunity. It knocked Ukraine and Hillary's age from the front page but now he still have the VA stuff to deal with. Maybe Obama should worry more about the nation and less about the politics.

  143. Perhaps the point is to publicly let China know that we have the technology not only to figure out that China is hacking but who specifically in China is doing the work, what they look like and where to find them.

  144. You must march to the eastern front! Anglo extremists have left with no choice!! Or Russian Freedom March to the west gonna start soon!!! You will find out within a decade!!!

  145. I don't believe we will. We are still far above Russia in all ways. As to China, they are the person to reckon with and I expect the fight to be a bitter one. As shown by the article on their attitude to anyone who fights them. We will have to think of a way to counter this despicable beahvior on their part.

  146. "I don't believe we will"
    Because you are scared and hence you are not going to even squeak on that front! You've replaced that war criminal Rassmussen quietly for that reason alone!!

  147. Wasn't it two weeks ago that Obama leaned on US companies not to attend an economic conference in St Petersburg? All of the CEOs that were going had to cancel because Whitehouse said so. We are certain there is a definable line between business and politics?

    On the case of Huawei. Sprint has been forced to cancel plans to upgrade it's hardware with Huawei products after U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment made clear it would not allow the Softbank-Sprint merger to go ahead of Sprint has Huawei hardware. Huawei operation in Australia has been hampered after US made clear to Australia if they value American security relationship, Australia should pick Cisco. Beside Huawei has been accused of being a front of Chinese intelligence by USG, we now know NSA has been stealing Huawei’s source-code since 2007 so it can create a backdoor on all Huawei products. To what extend are we going to admit both sides are doing the exactly same thing? Stealing for all the benefits be it military, intelligence or financial.

  148. It does sort of boggle the mind how easily China is able to enlist the aid of its citizens in boycotting American, Japanese, British, etc. companies at essentially a moment's notice. You would think, with the immense trade asymmetry and rule-breaking favoring Chinese investors at the expense of American workers, that American citizens would wholeheartedly boycott Chinese goods at least half as readily as they boycott ours. Many young Chinese today are critical of their government and of those among them willing to fall in line whenever the government cries foul. But they are still an extreme minority, with the majority of the Han Chinese more than ready to call for war on Japan or the U.S.A. if the government deems it in China's interests.

    And if you're a movie buff, doesn't it bother you that Hollywood is willing to make the movies you watch censor-friendly? Isn't that flat out support for a repressive regime?

    I recall riding in the subway in an East coast Chinese city, and in every train car were LCDs displaying video of Chinese military might--guns firing, bombs exploding, tanks and ships being deployed. Most of the passengers keep their eyes carefully glued to their smartphones, but deny it as they will, being surrounded by manipulation from cradle to grave will have shaped their views in ways they fail to notice or account for.

  149. Don't believe the hype, anything this public has a strategy back story. China is a geopolitical foe and this is a chess match between the reigning champion and the newest contender. We didn't invent this game, but we are pretty good at it.

  150. China would also do well to remember how complicity between a government (Great Britain) and corporatism (The British East India Company) once caused great hardship for China.

    But America shouldn't have been so brazen in making wanted posters of active Chinese servicemen. No country on Earth would stand for such an insult, even if it were warranted. We certainly wouldn't.

  151. Wanted posters? What's the point?
    If they were really "wanted", wouldn't the FBI set up a sting? Offer a free something to entice them somewhere from where they could be brought to justice. As would be done with U.S. citizens?

  152. The Obama Administration says China has gone too far, that it's crossed some invisible line in the cyber sands by using the internet for industrial espionage.

    Problem is, there's no historical basis for drawing that line. Industrial espionage, often with state assistance, has centuries of storied history. Silk production, weaving looms, tea plant cultivation, porcelain manufacture, etc: the list is a long one, with China a common victim.

    Obama justifies NSA's sweeping activities in the political sphere because "that's what states do." Well, the same goes for industrial spying. That's what states do. And have long done.

  153. True and England used to encourage privateers to raid Spanish galleons. The fact that the indicted conduct has historical precedents does not make it any less legal under current laws in most democracies. Think of it this way: individuals are stealing private property -- corporate trade secrets. The fact that those individuals are Chinese nationals is irrelevant. Should the nationality of the thief be relevant to the illegality of the conduct? Can I steal from you as long as I am not a citizen of your country? Chinese government sponsorship of economic piracy is nothing more than state-sanctioned theft.

  154. Obama Administration is becoming bizzare in its
    working. After the disclosure of NSA massive
    espionage it should have shown a bit of
    humility. His AG, unable to indict any banker,
    has gone after Chinese officials. Eric Holder
    betrays total ignorance of diplomatic repurcussions
    and actually embarrassed new ambassador,
    Max Baucus.For American companies to rush to
    US Govt. with complaints about unfair practices by
    China is an old story played out against Japan in
    1980s and much ballyhood conflict with EU about
    Airbus when Boeing was on the backfoot. These
    complaints are meant to put pressure on foreign
    governments to curb their companies so America
    companies can earn decent profit and CEOs big
    bonuses. It is a common knowledge that mfg. cost in
    China is much lower than USA so Chinese can
    compete on cost basis. Deceptively the issue is framed
    as dumping.US govt agencies always agree with US
    companies.My experience with the dumping case filed
    by our company and leading the data collection and
    reporting confirms the phoney nature of these dumping
    cases.

  155. Well the United States government will do anything for money. So they would sell themselves out and even the American people. Good job.

  156. What I admire abut these two countries is that they strive to foster the interests of their majority populations, the very opposite of American practice.

  157. If American corporations made their stuff in America they wouldn't have to worry about their technology and trade secrets being stolen. They are eating their own children. They want cheap goods so they have bigger profits, but that has it's own costs. China is learning from us and soon they'll be selling goods and services that we now make there. Remember how Walmart swallowed up all the mom and pop stores? Wait until China gobbles up the corporations.

  158. This is too funny - we're almost trading places with China. The Chinese government owns businesses for the good of their nation, while U.S. businesses now own our government for the good of themselves. China keeps close tabs on their own people and so do we - in addition to the entire planet. Oh, but we don't do it for economic advantages because we ARE exceptional and don't need to!

    Our industries demand and profit from wars, not to free people but to free markets for them to profit from at everyone else' expense including our kids lives. They write legislation, tax codes, trade agreements, get key cabinet and White House staff positions, and otherwise give themselves every advantage they can dream up to benefit themselves at our expense, and we're supposed to sympathize with them? No way. They lost my sympathy when they bought our government from the crooked politicians who sold it to them.

    It's particularly interesting that American citizens are not allowed to know what's being secretly negotiated in the TPP trade talks that EXCLUDES China - but corporations get seats at that table. If it wasn't for Wikileaks, we wouldn't even know that.

    You know, we have a Central Party too - the Chamber of Commerce. Both Democrats and Republicans answer to them - so does the Supreme Court. But don't look here, look at China!

    What we really need is a People's Court and our own Most Wanted posters.

  159. That the Chinese government steals western technology is no secret; it has been going on for years, not just through cyberspying, but by more traditional means, such as recruiting employees at Western companies to pass trade secrets to the Chinese Ministry of Trade. The May 5 New Yorker recently profiled a fascinating example (link below).

    www.newyorker.com/reporting/2014/05/05/140505fa_fact_bhattacharjee

    What is remarkable is that the U.S. Government, which heretofore has been reluctant to publicly call out the PRC for this behavior, is now bringing indictments, symbolic as they may be. Chalk this up to our government's Asian pivot and reaction to China's increasing aggression towards its neighbors, our regional allies. It looks like twenty years of "you buy our bonds" and we turn a blind eye to your less savory activities is coming to an end. Now, what about Tibet?

  160. The country that "invented" the internet, can not defend, its most
    precious industrial and military assets, against a gargantuan hungry,
    thief China, and to a lesser extend despotic Russia.
    The United States of America, has lost billions upon billions of dollars,
    in research and development, in the industry and the military
    (Through Chinese Cyber Theft) and has endangered its national security, because it failed miserably, to take into account, the security risk
    involved, into networking inside the internet, its industry and military information systems, provided that, prior to the internet, and during the
    cold war, spying was a costly and risky business.
    China and Russia, laugh now, are very happy indeed, spy now against
    the United States, Free of Charge and even Risk Free.!!

  161. We have been trying to tell you for years.
    Once sided free trade policy gave china all the money.
    Now they are building up a huge military.
    And now they are world leaders and our businesses will do their bidding.
    Wait until facebook, a few year declining, will sell your private data to them so they can arrest you for Unchinese thought.

    Its a police state folks. Wake up.

  162. I consider The Times brave in reporting thoroughly on these important issues, knowing that you are being targeted as we read this, just as you have been in the past. I hope your firewall holds up the next few weeks.

  163. From the article: “People just assume everything they do is being watched — I always assume every email I send is read, every conversation I have is listened to,” said a Western executive .... So, the question remains: Is it really any different here in the US? The only difference, as I see it: the Chinese people can readily assume that if the government has a given technical capability of surveillance, they'll use it - one really need not even bother asking. Here in the US, on the other hand, the government will give lofty lip service to matters of protecting privacy rights, but like the Chinese, if they have the technical capability, you can bet they'll use it, too. Being silent on the matter, the Chinese government, at least has the good taste to spare their nation's people a mendacious and sentimental rhetoric about rights. Given the US government's voluble claims about protecting rights, which we now know to be untrue, I sadly ask: which is more honest?

  164. The irony here is that everyone needs to consume fewer things, which of course puts a crimp in the plans of both Chinese and U.S. leaders. Limitless growth no longer works as an economic plan, and using limitless consumption as the basis for national financial health is a good way to fry both your economy and the planet.

  165. Is any surprise? After all, our great techno-geniuses were happy to reap the huge short term profits derived from having their gizmos Made in China. Maybe they really needed a bit more of a broad-based, traditional liberal arts education after all, since it's obvious that they never understood the story of the Trojan horse.

  166. Spying is spying whichever way one may want to define it

  167. Just think of all the components of technology manufactured in China, especially routers and switches used for network infrastructure. The AICPA offers special discounts on Lenovo computers. Unless we stop buying products made by organizations whose charter is to steal information for political and economic gain, we are doomed.

  168. "But behind the acrimony lay an uncomfortable risk for many American companies, as well as businesses from the European Union and elsewhere: Standing against Beijing, or even alerting foreign governments to trade issues, can carry serious repercussions."

    So, the world should kowtow to the 21st century Chinese empire of spies and thieves?

    Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger and the corporations that supported them had visions of billions of Chinese consumers dancing in their heads. Too bad they miscalculated so horribly, to the great detriment of the rest of the planet.

  169. State should not spy for private interest. So, if a solar panel maker in China wants to steal files from computers of the solar panel maker in the US he should hire some hacker to do this for him, and not have military do that for him for free. The US wants to enforce its spying standards on China? The government seems to be less culturally sensitive than Hollywood. What happened to US hackers? Can't they bring down the Great Firewall for a day as a prank?

  170. I watched a video of JFK welcoming the first Somali Prime minister to the White house, my father also learned from a US missionary school in Bula-Barde Central Somalia, The US used to be great country that had reputation for helping the weak, what happened to that country and its leaders.

    where did all the clever, intelligent guys gone, and where on earth did you find people like Dick and Rumsfeld.

    China is not and will not be threat to the US for the foreseeable future, everything they make breaks so don't make a enemy where none exist.

  171. Times change.

  172. An accompanying article reports that the US stance on industrial espionage "draws a line that few others recognize."

    Leaving aside the fact that China has protested that it has never used its military assets for the purpose of industrial espionage, does this claim about the US being the odd man out hold water?

    Around 2000, I recall that the Europeans worked themselves into a lather over the US's "Echelon program" that reportedly spied on European companies. A former head of the CIA, R. James Woolsey, went public with an admission that US intelligence had indeed spied on European companies. However, that was not for the reasons you'd think, said Woolsey. Not for the purpose of industrial espionage, but because European companies regularly paid international bribes. Complaints in the European Parliament mysteriously dried up.

    If Europeans don't recognize the line that the US has drawn, then they are utter hypocrites. But that is hardly news.

  173. Let's put an end to China's barbarism. Stop trading with china. They think they can act with with impunity.
    One word for China - ethics. You need that to behave like a civilized nation..

  174. Whatever happened to the doctrine that if you are doing nothing wrong, you have nothing to hide? Giant corporations are entitled to privacy, but citizens in the US or political leaders abroad have no privacy rights? Spying to help US firms win contracts or better deals (to others' loss) is fine--if the US does it.

  175. So does this mean the TPP isn't going anywhere? Good.

  176. If we had any semblance of a strong government we'd shut down trade with China and force them to admit their crimes against their trading "partners"/victims. But we don't, so we won't and the whining will continue, and like every other scandal and screw-up, Obama knew nothing about it, didn't see it, hear it and will not talk about it until it's splashed across the newspapers. Then he'll be appalled, and promise to get to the bottom of it, until you turn your head and then it's off to the golf course or another multimillion dollar vacation trip - not to Chicago.

  177. We can only protect against the Chinese cyberthefts by inventing better protection — every week or even every day, since their hackers are so adept at breaking into our systems.

  178. Remind me again why it is we wanted to move our entire manufacturing base over to proximity with these people, and why we are so eager to have friendly trade relations with them. Oh yeah, because they'll lend us money.

  179. No. Lending money (collecting US Treasuries for their balance of payments) will not accomplish world economic domination - the competitive advantage of the systematic and unrelenting theft of manufacturing trade secrets will destroy American advantage and bring unimaginable growth to their economic position - however.

  180. Once again, Freedom and Principles take a back seat to profit.

  181. Yes, you are all right. US or China, both are arguably doing some questionable things. But, let's think about the reality here for a moment. If you leave your house vacant with the windows open, doors unlocked and an inside map to all of your valuables, how long do you think it's going to be before someone enters and takes it all?

    We have bigger issues here as evidenced by the continuing escalation of cybercrime both domestically and internationally. Once the chickens have escaped, it's kind of late to close the door and complain about it. If this larger problem is not addressed soon, these little cat fights are going to be irrelevant compared to what could (and likely will) happen.

    BTW, if these "good guys" can technically do this kind of thing, the real "bad guys" are way ahead of them and doing way more "damage" than anyone even is aware of, yet.