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Chaoting Cheng
Beiträge帖子: 98 | Punkte: 81 | Zuletzt Online: 10.06.2019
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    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "论中俄联合之脆弱性" geschrieben. 10.06.2019

      从中国的视角看,历史上的沙俄是一个侵略成性的暴虐大国,总共从中国攫取了150万平方公里土地,其后继者苏联一手策动了外蒙古独立。俄国和日本,是近现代以来对中国伤害最大的两个帝国主义强权,但日本在二战战败后,被迫全部吐出了侵占的中国领土,而俄国占领中国土地(以及外蒙古独立)的事实已经合法化和永久化。继承沙俄的苏联,同样是一个扩张欲望永无止境的霸权大国,在1969年中苏爆发激烈边境战斗后,两国关系跌入冰点,苏联随即在中苏边境陈兵百万,强大的装甲集群一周之内就能直捣北京。更加可怕的是,苏联认真地准备对华发动毁灭性的核打击,以摧毁中国的战略核力量。为此,苏联征询当时同样与中国处于敌对状态的美国的意见。但尼克松总统意识到,如果允许苏联对中国进行核打击,那么“整个世界就会跪倒在北极熊面前,而只要美国反对,苏联就不敢轻易动用核武器。” 因此,美国向苏联表达了反对对华核打击的立场。回顾这段惊心动魄的历史,公正的人们必须承认,是美国挽救了面临核打击灭顶之灾的中国。

      而从苏联及其后继者俄罗斯联邦的视角看,中国同样是一个不值得信任的、忘恩负义的狡猾角色。如果说中国革命是一项前途未卜的风险投资,那么苏联实际上是那个目光如炬意志坚定的天使投资人。国共两党都大量接受了苏联的经济、政治、军事和人才援助。国民党方面,赫赫有名的黄埔军校,是苏联一手帮助建立的,北伐战争是苏联军事顾问一手指挥的。中国共产党就更不用说了,是共产国际的一个支部,直接接受莫斯科的指令。莫斯科的首肯,是党领导人合法性的最重要来源,这也是王明和博古这些毛头小伙能掌握中国共产党领导权的原因,因为他们在莫斯科受训,如同”天子门生“一样充满优越感。强悍如毛者,也只有在得到斯大林的认可后才真正扬眉吐气,成为中国共产党实至名归的最高领袖。1949年中华人民共和国成立后,中苏结盟。在第一个五年计划期间,苏联向中国提供了大规模援助,帮助实施了156项工矿业工程,相当于手把手帮助中国实现了工业化。一个大国帮助另一个近邻大国实现工业化,从而奠定其成为强国的基础,这在世界近现代史上从未有过。美国与蒋介石政权曾经是盟友关系,但美国也没有帮助蒋记中国实现工业化,中华民国是一个没有自主重工业和军事工业的农业弱国,以至于在工业化日本的侵略面前节节败退。今天,当中国自豪地宣称自己是全球工业体系最完备的制造业超级大国的时候,不要忘了,第一桶金是俄国人给的,是俄国人帮助我们建立了重工业体系,手把手地把我们从一个积贫积弱的农业国领进了工业强国门槛。更为重要的是,苏联还对中国的核武器研制提供了最初的宝贵支持。然而,毛在斯大林死后野心膨胀,意欲成为新的斯大林以领导社会主义阵营,中苏从而爆发激烈的意识形态争执,进而发展到严重的军事对抗。面对苏联红军的百万雄师,毛深为忧惧,转而投靠美国,并对苏联反戈一击,最终导致苏联解体。苏联帝国棺材上的钉子,中国钉上了很大的一颗。

      尽管普京“大帝”在中国拥有上至最高领导人、下至贩夫走卒的大量崇拜者,但曾经哀叹苏联解体是“二十世纪最大地缘政治灾难”并图谋恢复苏联的他,能不对“阴险”的“中国朋友”心生怨恨并充满防范?如今,中国由于近四十年来实行改革开放政策(邓小平说,开放实际上是对美国开放)而使得国力大幅提升,从而信心极度膨胀,因而抛弃了邓的“韬光养晦”、江的“闷声发大财”和胡的“不折腾”,转而在地缘政治上采取“奋发有为”姿态。2013年,“一带一路”战略横空出世,北京试图携庞大资本经略欧亚大陆。这实质上是北京要趁俄国衰弱之际,全面接收苏联解体后的欧亚大陆地缘政治遗产。难以想象,在当年苏联全盛时期,还有哪个大国敢这样明目张胆地谋求欧亚大陆地缘政治主导权,即便只是贸易和投资,也是不可想象的,因为经济必然与政治挂钩,何况是大规模基础设施建设,而且北京也明确宣称,“一带一路”是当今最受欢迎的国际公共产品。北京的雄图远略和庞大资源,使普京的“欧亚经济联盟”相形见绌,这实际上是对俄国大国雄心的重大打击。

      诚然,国际关系是复杂而变幻莫测的,“没有永久的朋友,也没有永久的敌人,只有永久的利益。” 从现实主义国际关系理论来看,国家领导人的愿望并不重要,因为愿望是不可靠的,是多变的,国家的实力才是决定性的因素。尽管俄国的经济总量只相当于中国的广东省,但仍然拥有强大的军力,尤其是其核武库匹敌美国,足以毁灭世界多次。因此,只有俄国的军事实力尤其是核力量严重削弱,俄国才不会构成对中国的威胁,才可能真正成为令人放心的伙伴。而这对野心勃勃扩张成性的俄国人来说,几乎是天方夜谭。布热津斯基曾说,“作为美国的伙伴,俄国太虚弱了;作为美国的病人,俄国又太强壮了。” 而对当今中国而言,作为盟友,俄国在军事上显然太强悍了,有能力直接威胁中国的生存;作为伙伴,俄国在经济上又太虚弱了,不能与美国这个数十年来的科技来源和巨大市场相提并论。如果中国与俄国结盟,俄国必然要求北京在经济上输血,而虚弱的俄国经济,有可能成为拖累中国的巨大负担。但如果美国全面与中国“脱钩”,那么中国将至少丧失一个最大的外汇顺差来源,北京是否有能力对包括俄国在内的“一带一路”沿线国家持续输血,要打一个很大的问号。

      尽管中俄两国在抵抗西方自由民主压力方面有共同诉求,但俄国政治体制毕竟不同于中国。俄国是一个披着民族主义外衣的威权大国,但至少在政体上还是一个多党民主制国家;而中国则是一个披着威权主义外衣的极权大国,中国特色社会主义的核心是中国共产党的领导,这已经载入宪法。强人普京之后的俄罗斯,仍然可能真正实行多党民主制,从而回归西方大家庭。其实,历史上俄国本来就是一个欧洲强国。归根到底,中俄两国接近的驱动力在于:当前,中俄两国都面临美国(和西方)的强大压力,被迫抱团取暖。但是,两国的情况又有很大的不同。俄国之所以遭到西方制裁,直接原因是普京在2014年颇为彪悍地吞并了乌克兰的克里米亚。尽管普京作风粗暴手腕凌厉,但其实是以攻为守,是对欧盟和北约不断东扩步步紧逼的被迫反击。普京的目的在于向西方表明,乌克兰是俄罗斯的地缘政治底线,不容倒向西方。美欧对此显然已经心领神会,乌克兰加入欧盟一事已经无限期从议事日程上剔除,加入北约更是遥不可及。然而,中国与美国的矛盾,却是崛起国与霸权国之间的结构性冲突。北京一方面指责华盛顿咄咄逼人的战略打压,强调中国无意谋求霸权,无意挑战现有国际秩序;但另一方面,北京并不打算放弃以“一带一路”为代表的宏大战略,而且已经逐渐从“项目驱动”式运作升级为“机制化”管理。北京还强调要为世界贡献“中国方案”,输出“公共产品”。与俄国处于守势的战略地位迥然不同的是,中国作为崛起强国,实际上是以守为攻,是改变现存国际秩序的一方,因而美国不断指责中国是“修正主义”强权大国。

      在这种态势下,美国是否还会继续维持同时遏制俄中两国的战略,非常值得怀疑。有迹象显示,特朗普政府在成立之初,至少从人员构成上来看,就有强烈的“联俄制华”倾向。但无奈美国国内传统反俄势力过于强大,使得特朗普一直无法有效实施战略转向。有鉴于此,尽管普京也有改善对美关系的愿望,但奈何落花有意流水无情,也只能耐心等待美国国内斗争中亲俄派压制反俄派那一天能尽快到来。在这种情况下,面对北京在美国压力之下的主动示好,普京当然笑纳,一方面坐山观虎斗,另一方面,也可以借机向美方抬高要价。

      2019年5月初,美国国务院政策规划部主任Kiron Skinner博士说,美国“正在准备与一场与中国的文明冲突。” 她将与中国的大国权力竞争称为“一场与一个真正不同的文明和不同意识形态之间的战斗,这是美国从未经历过的。中国(对美国)构成独一无二的挑战......因为北京政权不是西方哲学和历史的子孙。(美苏)冷战只是西方大家庭内部的争斗,而即将到来的与中国的冲突将是美国首次面对一个非白种人大国权力竞争者。”

      现在各界(包括中国官方)都在猛烈抨击Skinner这位黑人居然发出了美中对抗是白人和非白人之间“文明冲突”的言论。但我认为,他们都没有读懂美国国务院这番言论的真实意图。美国其实是在向俄国喊话:“我们都是白种人,欢迎回归西方文明大家庭,不要当中国的小伙伴。” 实际上,这就是典型的“联俄制华”地缘政治战略。道理很简单:作为一个极富战略智慧的国家,美国不可能不明白同时与中俄对抗极为不智。而由一位级别不高的非洲裔官员来发表这番言论,就有回旋余地,而且可以避开种族主义嫌疑。不能不说,这极可能是一次精心安排的行动。我相信莫斯科肯定已经注意到了这番言辞背后的意图。

      总之,世界正处于新格局孕育成型的前夜,美中俄大三角的复杂互动,无疑将决定人类在二十一世纪的命运。基于历史经验和现实因素,我对中俄联合的前景深深表示怀疑。

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "论战略公开的必要性" geschrieben. 11.05.2019

      今天最大的消息,当然是中美贸易谈判破裂,美国对2000亿美元中国商品的关税从10%提升至25%。对于这个消息,我并不惊讶,也可以说是早有预期。近一年前,我就对中美关系的发展大方向做出了正确的判断。有图有真相!


      当然,我并不是自我吹嘘有先见之明,而是在于强调这一点:在仔细研读了美国的“国家安全战略报告”原文以及另外几个重要的美国政府文件后,结合其他学者的分析,我的判断更可能符合事态发展的逻辑。但是,当我在去年7月把这个判断公开的时候,却遭到不少质疑甚至是嘲弄。其中一种典型声音就是:不要相信那些公开的战略文件,不过只是些台面上的东西,当不得真的。

      对此,我能说什么呢?这种论调其实在中国人中间是很典型的,包括一些教育程度很高的中国人也是这样认为。这反映了很多人对政治和战略的认识很肤浅,还停留在阴谋诡计和宫廷争斗的低级阶段,不明白战略公开的必要性。

      将国家战略昭告天下,不但可以统一己方思想、调动己方士气,还可以向盟友发出正确的信号、促使盟友向己方靠拢,而且,也可以向对手表明立场和底线,防止对手误判。所以,战略公开有很大的必要性。这也是为什么美国要将“国家安全战略”和“国防安全战略”这样的头等重要政策文件公开的原因。如果不去仔细分析这些公开的文件,而是痴迷于所谓的内部消息和人脉关系,恐怕是典型的中国式“智慧”,倘若肉食者皆如此,那就是误尽苍生了。

      当然,战略让对手知晓,也可能会产生一些负面效应,但是,通过战术运作的不可预测性和突然性,这些负面效应也可以得到有效的抵消。美国现任总统特朗普确实是这方面的大师,他给人的印象是反复无常、出尔反尔、不可捉摸。然而,这正是他自诩为谈判高手所要的效果:在战术上不可预测。他上任总统两年多来,其战略是高度稳定的,像激光一样目标明确,至少在对外战略上,他坚决执行了美国统治精英集团将中国定为主要敌手的公开战略。

      又比如那位著名的希特勒,早在1925年,他在《我的奋斗》中论述“生存空间”对德国的重要性时就明确写道,“要取得新土地,只有在东方才有可能。如果要在欧洲取得领土,只有在主要是牺牲俄国的情况下才有可能,这就是说,新帝国必须再一次沿着古代条顿武士的道路向前进军,用德国的剑为德国的犁取得土地,为德国人民取得每天的面包。” 他将侵略苏联的战略意图提前16年用白纸黑字写下来昭告天下。精明狡诈如斯大林者,当然不可能不明白希特勒的狼子野心,所以斯大林一直积极在苏联西面建立缓冲区,试图迟滞和减缓纳粹侵略对苏联的伤害,为此不惜与希特勒订立密约,一起瓜分波兰并向德国供应战略物资。但是,希特勒也是一位运用战术突然性的大师,他于1941年6月22日对苏联突然发动的闪电战,打了斯大林一个措手不及。直到战争爆发前夕,满载苏联战略物资的火车,还在按照合约驶往德国。

      总之,战略的公开性和稳定性,与战术的突然性和不可预测,并不矛盾,历史上在这方面的例子可谓不胜枚举。在已经到来的美中对抗中,特朗普政权对此运用可谓十分老练娴熟。反观天朝,从一开始的“奉陪到底”,到如今的“我是带着诚意来的”,不但在战略上首鼠两端,缺乏稳定性和公开性,而且在战术上循规蹈矩、一味被动应付,毫无灵活性。这样的团队,焉能立于不败之地?

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "“一带一路” Vs. “印太战略” -- 美中地缘政治对抗局面正在形成?" geschrieben. 30.04.2019

      最近在北京召开的第二届 “一带一路” 国际合作高峰论坛,有150个国家和90多个国际组织的近5000名代表与会,包括37位国家元首/政府首脑。总之看起来场面宏大,有“万邦来朝”之盛况,充分展现了中国强大的号召力和外交系统非凡的动员能力。

      外行看热闹,内行看门道。在前来捧场的外国政要中,最引人注目的当然是俄罗斯总统普京了,其他以亚非拉发展中国家为主,也有奥地利、捷克、匈牙利等欧洲小国,德法等欧洲大国则只派出了部长级别的官员出席。最值得地缘政治研究者注意的是,美国“印太战略”中的四个主要国家:美国、澳大利亚和印度完全拒绝参加,而日本则只是象征性地派出了自民党干事长(非政府官员)参加。

      这次会议恐怕将作为21世纪国际关系史上的一个标志性事件载入史册,因为它意味着中国“一带一路”战略(欧亚大陆)和美国“印太战略”(印度洋-太平洋)对立局面正在形成。

      自2013年“一带一路”倡议横空出世以来,六年时间过去了,该战略已经逐渐摆脱项目驱动式的运作,变得日益机构化、制度化。中国牵头建立了亚投行和丝路基金等强大的融资机构,两年一次的“一带一路”高峰合作论坛作为一个高层次的沟通平台,也走上例行运作的正轨。按照北京官方的说法,“一带一路”已经成为中国提出的、当今世界最受欢迎的国际“公共产品”。这些雄心勃勃的大手笔动作和高调昂扬的宣传,让外界、尤其是当今世界霸主美国疑虑重重。美国指责中国是企图改变现有世界秩序并确立在欧亚非支配地位的“修正主义”强国。尽管北京一再否认“一带一路”包藏地缘政治野心,但是其实际作为反而强化了西方尤其是美国的认知。北京过于高调的宣传造势和急于求成的战略冒进,至少给了美国口实,实在是令人困惑。

      不能否认北京在推进“一带一路”战略上的重大进展,本届高峰论坛呈现“万邦来朝”的盛况,就是明证。但是,这也反过来会刺激美日澳印四国加速实施“印太战略”。如今,“一带一路”已经先行一步,逐渐上升为机构化运作。如果“印太战略”也能相应地机构化,美中两大阵营在军事、经济和意识形态等方面的全方位对立局面很可能将正式形成,如同第一次冷战时期北约和华约的相继建立,美国推出马歇尔计划和苏联牵头成立经互会。由日本提出、得到澳大利亚和印度支持、最终被美国采纳的“印太战略”,其地缘政治目标剑指中国,各方对此心知肚明。但是,鉴于数年前中国在意识形态和军事上尚未发动前苏联那样咄咄逼人的凌厉攻势,使得美日澳印联盟没有借口正式形成。尤其是印度,该国并非美国传统盟国,虽然一直以来对其强大的北方邻国深具戒心,但又有着悠久的“不结盟”传统,担心霸权大国美国会伤害其珍惜的主权。然而,“一带一路”项目运作的高歌猛进(比如印度极度关切的“中巴经济走廊”)和机构化,正在加速促成美日澳印合流,形成对付中国的统一战线。因此,北京对“一带一路”的升级深化并试图扩大朋友圈(构建以中国为中心的联盟体系)的努力,很可能将被历史证明是一个轻率的举动,因为这极大可能刺激美日澳印也将“印太战略”机构化,至少是授人以柄,一个令北京领导层日夜担心的“亚洲北约”也许正呼之欲出,这绝不是北京期望看到的局面,而是一个地缘政治梦魇。前有美国在2018年底发动的打击华为行动,尽管大多数国家都在观望,但澳日印却坚定追随美国;后有如今的“一带一路”高峰论坛,虽然大多数国家不能抵抗北京的资金诱惑,前来捧场,但美日澳印却集体缺席。这些事件,都昭示着中国试图构建的“一带一路”阵营(欧亚大陆)和美日澳印阵营(印度洋-太平洋)两大集团对立局面正在孕育成型。

      或许北京也有人不愿意看到步步惊心的集团对抗局面,转而采取息事宁人的态度,甚至有可能像“中国制造2025”那样,因为异常高调而招致西方各国集体警惕,如今已悄然下架,不再提及。早知今日,何必当初?倘若“一带一路”回归理性,以企业为主体运作,避免国家力量的强力介入,各方的疑虑将得到极大缓解。但是,至少目前看不到这种趋势。

      在这场即将到来的新时代地缘政治集团对抗中,欧洲是一个骑墙派。欧盟各国既在意识形态和价值观上与北京格格不入,对中国的发展心怀疑惧,又垂涎与北京合作带来的经济利益,摇摆不定。欧盟各国已经被福利制度掏空,国家、社会和人民都慵懒无力,很难成为华盛顿遏制中国的坚定伙伴。在华盛顿决意发动的这场新冷战中,局势已经清晰,它的伙伴在印太地区。

      从地缘政治意义上来看,“一带一路”是中国试图扩大在欧亚大陆影响力并谋求支配地位的一种努力,属于传统的陆权范畴。而另一个传统陆权大国 - 俄国的附和,也强化了“一带一路”是一个陆权国家联合体的色彩。而“印太战略”的四个国家 - 美国、日本、印度和澳大利亚都是传统的海洋大国,美国更是当之无愧的海上霸主。“一带一路”战略与”印太“战略之间的对抗,是历史上一再发生的陆权强国和海权强国之间争夺世界霸权的经典再现,也是一场决定世界格局的巅峰对决,胜者毫无疑问将主宰二十一世纪的人类命运。


      其实,发生在二十世纪后半期的冷战,从地缘政治角度看,也是陆权大国(苏联)Vs 海权大国(美国)的一场争霸战。不过在二十一世纪,这一次陆权大国的主角换成了中国,而俄国由于实力衰微,不配扮演主角。当然,配角也可能发挥决定性的作用。第一次冷战时期,中国就是那个配角,但毛出于对苏联强大军力的恐惧,转而投靠美国,这是对苏联的战略重击。苏联帝国棺材上的钉子,中国钉上了很大的一颗。把“苏联解体”称为“二十世纪最大的地缘政治灾难”的普京,对此不可能不刻骨铭心。而发生在冷战之前、二十世纪初的英德争霸,其实也是一场海权和陆权的对抗。再之前(十九世纪中叶到二十世纪初),发生在大英帝国和沙皇俄国之间、争夺中亚的“大博弈”(Great Game),也是一场典型的海陆大国地缘政治争霸战。

      “一带一路”和“印太战略”都不是从天上掉下来的,是美中两国国力消涨合乎逻辑的发展结果,也是两国谋求国祚长久的战略努力。从20世纪90年代开始,美国在中东和中亚连续陷入三场战争(第一次海湾战争、阿富汗战争和伊拉克战争),耗资巨大(据前总统卡特说有3万亿美元之巨)。而同时期的中国,邓小平发出了深化改革的冲锋号,又经历了江胡两朝的“闷声发大财”,国力急剧膨胀。由此引起了美国的严重不安和警惕,奥巴马时期就启动了战略调整,将战略重心由中东和中亚向亚太地区转移,这就是所谓的“亚太再平衡”,转而对中国进行战略性围堵和遏制,由此给中国造成巨大压力。而北京为了避免在东亚和西太平洋地区与美日正面对决,于是运用太极似的手法,反而掉头向西,凭借急剧膨胀的经济实力,展开了对欧亚大陆Mastery地位的冲击。习处处模仿毛,“一带一路”其实就是在应用毛提出的“敌进我退”游击战原则,同时也符合中国传统的战略文化,即避免直接冲突,尤其是军事对抗。中国人奉为至宝的孙子兵法,最引人注目的原则乃是“不战而屈人之兵,善之善者也。”而西方的兵圣克劳塞维茨则断言,“战争就是要将暴力推向极致”,西方人的对抗,就是基于实力的硬碰硬较量。

      欧亚大陆被地缘政治学称之为“心脏地带”,其地位大概相当于世界的“中原”,中国的战略家们当然对“得中原者得天下”这一古训异常熟悉,他们当然也想逐鹿“世界之中原”。台湾战略学者林中斌将"一带一路"战略解读为是北京谋求“不战而主欧亚非”,即以强大的军事力量为后盾,以大规模基建为手段,通过经济扩张和文化输出而确立领袖地位。林的论述,的确是精辟洞见,充分反映了台湾学者既深刻了解中国传统战略文化和复杂国情,又不受意识形态条条框框束缚的独特优势。

      然而,北京经略欧亚大陆和非洲的大动作,却犯了凭借海权而成为世界霸主的美帝国大忌,即绝对不允许欧亚大陆上出现可以整合各国进而挑战美国霸权的强国。尽管欧亚大陆加在一起的力量,要远远超过美国,但因为四分五裂,才使得远离欧亚大陆的美国成为具有支配地位的世界霸权,至少是欧亚大陆的仲裁者。美国的地缘政治战略,师承于同样凭借海上霸权而成为“日不落帝国”的英国。英国历来是玩弄“分而治之”战略的高手,目的是维持欧洲大陆均势,防止欧陆出现任何能够挑战英国霸权的强国。拿破仑和希特勒企图统一欧洲大陆的努力,都受到大英帝国的全力抵制,最终功败垂成。在欧洲大陆政治家中,只有雄才大略、深谙列强心理而又严守扩张边界的俾斯麦,凭借无比高明的外交、战略和军事运作,才免于列强干涉而建统一德意志之不世奇功。

      中国的“一带一路”,是一个松散的联合体,强调开放共赢,这既是其优势,但也是其弱势,因为缺乏坚定明确的普世价值观,因而基础并不牢固,沿线各国大多是冲着中国的钱袋子来捧场的,一旦中国的财政支持弱化或枯竭,这一热闹的宴会马上就会一哄而散。而美日澳印的“印太”战略联盟,号称是基于共同的自由民主价值观。某种意义上来说,基于共同价值观的联盟,其基础确实比基于利益关系的“酒肉朋友”要更牢固。但是,“印太战略”更多是一个传统安全联盟,在发展方面投入的资金有限,因而对印太地区国家的吸引力打了折扣。而“一带一路”则是一个发展联盟,中国的巨额资金,无疑对沿线发展中国家有巨大的诱惑力,但问题是,这个庞大的摊子,是否会日益成为“帝国负担”而耗尽中国国力?

      此外,北京要和美欧玩强权政治游戏,功力可能远远不够。历史上,中国在国际关系上的最高成就是在东亚地区建立了以自己为中心的朝贡体系。但这个体系,在经济上是亏本的,好处只是满足了统治者“万邦来朝”的虚荣心,以及儒家等级制的需要。西方人对异族之残酷决绝,历史上恐怕只有嗜血成性的蒙古人可以相提并论。西班牙和英国等欧洲殖民者灭绝美洲土著印第安人、贩卖黑奴,希特勒德国灭绝欧洲犹太人的暴行,都是铁的事实。而中国统治者的狠劲,主要是对内,面对更强悍的外族力量,割地和亲、称臣纳贡、卖国求荣,皆不绝于史;委婉求全常有,决死奋战罕见。秦皇汉武,唐宗宋祖,那个刚烈尚武的年代,俱往矣!

      不过,鉴于中国庞大的体量,北京掌控着14亿勤劳聪慧而且愿意忍受过劳工作的人民,尽管军力远逊巅峰时期的苏联,但其综合实力尤其是经济和科技实力,确实远在当年的苏联之上。考虑到今日大国竞争,军事对抗已经退居次要地位,而经济和科技才是主战场,因此,“一带一路”与“印太战略”之间的对抗,决不是一场短跑比赛,而是一场马拉松般的长跑。自从500年大航海时代开始以来,历史上陆权对海权的挑战,总是以惨败告终。这一次,历史会轮到中国人出场,沿着当年蒙古人的足迹、以天之骄子的面目横空出世纵横欧亚并改写历史吗?

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog Eintrag 美中对抗与德国站队 - 谁将赢得新时代的军备竞赛(5G)? kommentiert 07.03.2019

      外交部:
      德国外交部似乎并不在乎中国是德国最大贸易伙伴以及中德战略伙伴关系这一现实,与内政部态度接近。外交部一位发言人强调,华为是一家中国企业,受中国法律管辖,对中国企业有义务与中国情报机构合作表示担忧 。

      德国总理:
      作为德国政府首脑,默克尔一向对重大问题出言谨慎,尤其是对于在美中两个世界最强大国之间选边站这样的敏感问题。2019年2月5日,默克尔在访问日本期间表示,“鉴于安全方面的考虑,必须与中国政府讨论,(中国的)公司不能将数据交给(中国的)国家机构。 ”这相当于为华为公司参与德国5G网络建设设置了条件。不能不说,默克尔是一个老练的政客,她施展了一种“战略模糊”的手腕,避免明确选边站队,同时也考虑到美中双方的诉求。当然也可以认为,她是在为最终的选边站队争取时间。

      除了通讯运营商、德国工业界和德国政府这几个利益攸关者,还必须考虑到德国是一个民主国家,公众意见往往对政府决策有重大影响,而德国媒体对中国的报道以负面居多,不能忽略这一点。

      中国是德国最大的贸易伙伴,德国企业在中国市场有巨大的投资和经济利益,德中两国已经建立起全面深入的伙伴关系。而且,作为一个中等大国,德国并无在地缘政治上与中国对抗的雄心和意志,也缺乏这样的能力。但是,美国是德国的传统盟国和强大的安全保护提供者,美方的强硬要求,使得德国政府面临一个棘手难题。德国政府最终如何决策,目前仍不得而知,但是可以确定的是,德国政府将不会迅速做出决策,而是将审时度势,寻找符合德国利益的最佳平衡点。甚至有人认为,鉴于此事关系重大,不能仅仅由德国政府来决策,而应该由德国国会来最终拍板 。

      4. 美国能否拉起打击华为的统一战线?

      尽管美国花了很大力气来游说盟国和其它国家不要使用华为的网络设备,但是成果有限。目前只有澳大利亚、新西兰和日本三国政府明确表示会将华为从5G网络建设排除 。但是新西兰总理Jacinda Ardern却在2019年2月19日表示,还没有就在5G网络中是否使用中国华为公司的设备做最后的决定 。因此,迄今为止,真正坚定追随美国的只有澳大利亚和日本两国。

      这些迹象显示,这一次美国可能难以成功组建打击华为的统一战线。有欧洲评论家认为,Trump总统破坏了欧美之间的信任关系,使得欧洲在中美之间的选择中陷入困境,不愿意押宝任何一方。目前欧洲会对华为采取防范措施,尤其是在核心网选择上排除华为,但并不情愿在整个5G网络建设上明确排除华为。当然,欧洲也清楚,华为并非完全不可取代,对华为的限制也许有利于欧洲本土通讯设备供应商:瑞典爱立信、芬兰诺基亚和法国阿尔卡特尔。

      如果说美中对抗即将来临,那么与冷战1.0时的一呼百应相比,这一次美国组建联盟、控制盟国和支配世界的能力似乎在下降。2015年3月,作为美国最亲密的盟国,英国不惜激怒美国,加入由中国主导的“亚洲基础设施投资开发银行”,就清楚地表明了这一点。英国与其它中等大国一样,不再仅仅依靠美国,而是在美国和中国之间两面下注。对于英国来说,这是一个生死攸关的问题。英国经济的重心在于服务业,尤其是金融服务业,如果英国不能服务于一个崛起中国的金融和经济利益,那么英国将在二十一世纪被边缘化。实际上,除了与中国合作,英国并没有多少选择 。

      美国的其它欧洲盟友,也并不情愿在对华关系中为了服从美国战略需要而牺牲自己的商业利益。与冷战1.0时期令人生畏的苏联红军相比,中国日益增长的军事力量并不构成对西欧的直接威胁。中国在意识形态上也并不像前苏联那样咄咄逼人,宣称要“埋葬资本主义制度”。如果美国打算全方位遏制围堵中国,那么将难以获得冷战1.0时期西欧盟国的完全认同。当然,美国也可能对此并不十分在意。对美国来说,遏制中国的最重要伙伴在亚太地区,日本、韩国和台湾的重要性要远远高于西欧。而由日本提出、得到澳大利亚和印度支持、并最终被美国接纳的“印太战略”将成为遏制中国的主要地缘政治战略;由美日澳印四国组成的“民主安全菱形”,将很可能作为一个多边军事联盟承担类似于北约在安全事务上对抗苏联的功能。而且,即便以法德为核心的“老欧洲”不服美国号令,美国还可以在“新欧洲”(中东欧国家)找到更顺从的伙伴。

      凭借依然超强的实力和尚存的领导力信用,也许美国还可以勉力组建一个遏华统一战线,但是这个集团的内部团结却相当可疑。在冷战1.0时期,东方集团爆发了中苏分裂,中国转而投靠美国,是对苏联领导力的战略性重击;同样地,在西方集团内部,法国戴高乐总统推行独立自主的外交政策、建设独立的核力量并退出北约军事一体化机构,法国的离经叛道让美国头疼不已。即便是忠实的西德,勃兰特政府也力主推行与东方集团缓和的“新东方政策”,展示了西德的独立性。2003年,美国执意发动入侵伊拉克的战争,但法德公然坚决反对。同样地,在2015年,英法德也不惜触怒美国而加入了中国主导成立的亚投行。所以,美国即使能够成功组建遏制中国的统一战线,也并不能保证成员国完全服从美国意志;而美国的理念,也不允许美国如同冷战1.0时期的苏联那样,悍然以武力镇压匈牙利(1956年)和捷克斯洛伐克(1968年)的独立自主行为。

      不过,在有关中国的问题上,德国能否顶住美国压力,不屈从美国意志,也要打一个很大的问号。1989年事件后,欧美实施对华军售禁运。多年来,中国一直努力说服欧盟解除这个禁运。德国总理施罗德在任时支持中国的要求,与法国一起大力推动解除欧盟对华军售禁运,但由于遭到美国强烈反对,最终作罢。今天的华为问题,某种意义上与中国要求欧盟解除对华军售禁运问题颇为类似。虽然在军售问题上,德法与美国冲突的激烈程度远逊于2003年反对美国攻打伊拉克,但德法仍然屈从了美国意志,由此可见,那时中国在德法心中的分量甚至不如伊拉克。

      5 冷战2.0的序幕?

      1946年3月5日,丘吉尔在美国总统杜鲁门的陪同下,在美国发表了著名的“铁幕”演说,对他眼中严重而紧急的苏联扩张主义威胁提出警告。丘吉尔的演说被广泛认为是开启冷战的关键时刻。而美国副总统Mike Pence于2018年10月在哈德逊研究所发表的对华强硬演说,也被很多人士认为是冷战2.0的动员令,可以与丘吉尔那篇开启冷战1.0的演说相提并论。如果说美国与中国正在步入一场新冷战,那么这一次将与旧冷战显著不同。前苏联当年主要是凭借强大的军事力量与西方分庭抗礼,并对西欧造成了直接的军事威胁;而且,东方阵营的共产主义和西方阵营的自由民主主义也展开意识形态上的激烈对抗。但是,中国的崛起主要在于经济和科技的快速发展,民众生活水平得到显著的提高,这反过来构成了中国共产党执政合法性的重要和主要来源;另一个来源是民族主义,但民族主义历来是把危险的双刃剑,中国的执政者必须小心翼翼地运用这股力量。因此,如果美国要发动对华新冷战,那么,打击中国的经济和科技实力将是主要作战方向,军事力量和意识形态的对抗将退居次要地位;但是,如果美中两国不能很好地管控冲突,那么在经济和科技上的较量也不排除升级为军事力量和意识形态的全面对抗。

      在这个大背景下,被视为中国崛起缩影的华为公司,同时也是中国科技进步和经济发展的杰出代表,成为美国的首要打击对象,是美中对抗合乎逻辑的发展。

      在丘吉尔发表“铁幕”演说一年后,1947年3月,美国总统杜鲁门在国会发表演说,后被称为“杜鲁门主义”。根据“杜鲁门主义”,美国将“支持那些抵抗武装少数派和外部势力压迫的自由人民,而这应成为美国外交政策的基石。”杜鲁门宣布,美国愿意向深陷(与希腊共产党)内战的希腊政府提供经济和军事援助。土耳其面临与希腊类似的局面,也应获得美国援助。杜鲁门主义意味着美国终结与苏联的战时联盟,标志着冷战的实质性开端,由此美国开始为其遏制苏联政策提供财政手段。与之类似的是,美国副总统Pence的对华强硬演说可能是一场舆论动员,此后不久即展开了对华为的全面打击,标志着对华新冷战进入实际操作阶段。此前对中兴公司的打击行动可以被认为是一次战略预演,结果大获成功,中方全盘接受了美国要求,甚至包括向中兴派驻美方检查人员并承担费用这样“丧权辱国”的要求。打击中兴行动的成功,很可能鼓舞了美国打击华为的信心。

      美中贸易战是美国为了打击中国经济实力而主动发动的,很难说中国方面情愿参与这场可能葬送国运的冲突。但是,中方近年来的急于求成和战略冒进却让自身不自觉地掉入了美方挖掘的“修昔底德陷阱”。中国过早抛弃邓小平的韬光养晦战略令人困惑,因为这必将使得美中摊牌提前到来,从而大大不利于羽翼未丰的中国。

      6 结语

      美国国家机构对中国民族骄傲华为公司的全面打击,触动了美中对抗的敏感神经,美中两强似乎正在加速掉入“修昔底德陷阱”,由此引发了全球各地铺天盖地的讨论和忐忑不安的关注。美国拘捕华为公司高管的行动,以及随后要求各国禁止华为参与对未来至关重要的5G网络建设,不仅仅是一个法律问题,也是一个技术问题,还是一个地缘经济问题,最终是一个地缘政治问题。只有在这个大背景之下,才能理解为何超级大国美国对一家中国企业深具戒心并大动干戈。自冷战结束以来,世界格局发生了深刻的变动,国际力量对比发生了重大的转移。美国朝野上下逐渐达成了共识,中国就是那个有能力挑战美国霸权的战略竞争者,而且是排在传统对手俄国之前的头号竞争者。美国不会无视战略天平继续向中国倾斜,在Trump总统治下,美国必将采取坚决果断而又不拘常理的行动,以确保美国在世界秩序和格局中继续拥有领袖和支配地位。

      面临数十年未有之变局,大多数国家都无法置身事外。在这场是否允许华为参与5G建设的风波中,德国处于风口浪尖,面临选边站队的艰难抉择。德国的决定,将具有重大的示范效应,整个欧洲都在观望德国。但是,德国将不会迅速做出选择,而是将谨慎地审时度势,通盘考虑各方态度立场,反复权衡利弊得失,从而最终做出有利于德国利益的决策。

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog Eintrag 美中对抗与德国站队 - 谁将赢得新时代的军备竞赛(5G)? kommentiert 07.03.2019

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    • 1. Introduction

      Huawei is widely regarded as China's most outstanding, powerful, and most aggressive ICT (Information Communication Technology) company. It has been committed to entering the U.S. market. However, contrary to its outstanding performance in other markets, Huawei has long failed to achieve a major breakthrough in the U.S. market. This is so because the state apparatus of the U.S. has prevented American customers from purchasing Huawei's products, solutions, and services on the grounds of national security. In 2018, the U.S. launched its strongest ever actions against Huawei. In December 2018, the U.S. Department of Justice ordered the arrest of Huawei's CFO Meng Wanzhou on the grounds that the company was suspected of violating US sanctions against Iran, and asked Canada to extradite Meng to the United States for trial. At the same time, the United States decided to ban Huawei from participating in the construction of the 5G network of strategic importance. A lot of signs indicate that the U.S. state apparatus has made the crackdown on this successful technology company—which is seen as the epitome of China's rise—an important strategic goal, and is sparing no effort to mobilize its traditional and emerging allies to join its ranks.

      In stark contrast to the frosty reception and restriction in the U.S. market, Germany has been quite welcoming for Huawei's investment and business activities. Huawei also places special emphasis on the German market, and its Western European headquarters is located in a western German city, Düsseldorf. This is not only because of Germany's leading market size in Europe, but also because as a major developed country Germany's acceptance and recognition has an extraordinary demonstration effect for Huawei's business development in the global market. Over the years, Huawei has continued to invest a lot of resources in Germany, and its market share continues to increase. Germany is so important for Huawei that Torsten Küpper, head of Public Relations of Huawei Germany, called Germany the “second hometown” of Huawei (MA REVIEW, 2016).

      However, as Germany's most powerful ally and security provider since the end of World War II, the United States urged Germany to follow Australia, New Zealand, and Japan to join its international action against Huawei and to ban Huawei from participating in construction of the 5G network. Hence, Germany faces a difficult decision to choose between the two most powerful countries of the world: the United States and China.

      This article is not intended to predict how Germany will take sides, but to systematically analyze the similarities and differences between Germany and the United States in terms of position and policy towards Huawei, the opinions of different German stakeholders, the determinants of German decision-making, as well as the impacts of German decision on Sino-German relations and the changing world order.

      2. Huawei in the U.S. and the U.S. policy towards Huawei

      2.1. Huawei's development in the United States

      The United States is the world's leading communications equipment market with a market capacity of US$83.22 billion in 2016 (GRAND VIEW RESEARCH, 2018) and is expected to reach US$125.1 billion by 2025 (PR Newswire, 2018). Therefore, breaking through the U.S. market has a decisive strategic significance for ambitious Huawei.

      As early as in 1999, Huawei opened a research institute in Dallas to develop products specifically for the U.S. market. In June 2001, Huawei established FutureWei, a wholly-owned subsidiary in Texas, to begin selling broadband and data products to local businesses.

      As Huawei advanced in the U.S. market, doubts about Huawei's products came to the fore. In early 2003, Cisco sued Huawei in a court in Texas for infringement of its intellectual property rights. After one year and a half of patent disputes, the two sides finally reached a settlement. However, this dispute seriously affected Huawei's reputation in the U.S. market, making Huawei's business progress very slow (Jiemian, 2017).

      In 2007, Huawei and the U.S. mobile operator LeapWireless reached a mutual agreement - a first for Huawei. Thereafter, Huawei began to make some market progress. However, Huawei mainly provided services to some small and medium-sized operators, and has been unable to enter in league with the four major communication operators in the U.S. market (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile) (Jiemian, 2017).

      After 2008, Huawei tried to adopt a merger and acquisition (M&A) strategy to promote its business development in the United States, but Huawei's M&A attempts were repeatedly blocked. The landmark events are as follows (CKGSB, 2017):

      Three attempts of M&A were rejected
      -In 2008, together with Bain Capital, Huawei attempted to acquire 3Com and was rejected by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS);
      -Huawei’s attempt to acquire Motorola’s wireless assets in 2010 was also rejected by the U.S. government;
      -In 2010, Huawei attempted to acquire 2Wire, a broadband network software vendor, but failed because it was unable to obtain approval.

      A purchase of patent was rejected
      -In 2010, Huawei acquired 3Leaf's patented technology for US$2 million, but this deal was once again considered by CFIUS as “threat to U.S. national security”. Huawei finally revoked the transaction in February 2011.

      In addition to the failures of M&A, Huawei's contracts for supplying 4G equipment with AT&T (in 2009) and Sprint (in 2010) were also rejected by intervention of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) (USCC, 2011) and the U.S. Department of Commerce (WSJ, 2010).

      In October 2012, after more than one year of investigations on Huawei and ZTE, the U.S. House Intelligence Committee issued a report accusing the two largest Chinese telecommunications equipment companies of being arms of the Chinese government that had stolen intellectual property from American companies and could potentially spy on Americans. The House Intelligence Committee came to the conclusion that Huawei and ZTE were a national security threat because of their attempts to extract sensitive information from American companies and their loyalties to the Chinese government. Therefore, the United States government was asked to not do business with Huawei and ZTE and American companies were recommended to avoid buying their equipment (NY Times, 2012).

      After the report of the House of Representatives, the network equipment market of U.S. telecommunications operators was closed for Huawei. But Huawei still tried to sell mobile phones and other terminal products in the United States. However, this too was also strongly restricted. In January 2018, at the urging of U.S. lawmakers, AT&T, a large US telecommunications operator, cancelled its Smartphone deals with Huawei. The reason behind this was the concern that Huawei “will pose a threat to U.S. national security” (REUTERS, 2018).

      In March 2018, according to the suggestion of CFIUS, U.S. President Donald Trump blocked Singaporean Broadcom's hostile takeover bid worth of US$117 billion of Qualcomm, a well-known American communications chip and wireless technology company. The reason was that CFIUS is worried that successful acquisition by Broadcom will lead to possible reduction of R&D investment in Qualcomm, which will indirectly benefit Qualcomm's Chinese competitor Huawei—thereby jeopardizing the“national security” of the U.S. (Bloomberg, 2018). The Trump Administration is extremely concerned that Huawei as a Chinese company could gain technological superiority and dominance over the United States, especially in the field of 5G mobile communications—which is regarded as the battlefield of the new era of arms race by the U.S. government. Compared with previous U.S. Administrations, the Trump Administration's restrictions against Huawei have increased.

      Along with the U.S. government, the U.S. Congress is also alert to the operations of the two Chinese ICT companies, Huawei and ZTE. Following the 2012 House Intelligence Committee report, the Senate's 2019 John S. McCain Defense Authorization Act, passed on July 22, 2018, explicitly forbade the U.S. federal government to purchase any equipment or services from Huawei or ZTE .

      2.2. U.S. launched actions against Huawei

      In early December 2018, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a warrant for the arrest of Huawei's CFO Meng Wanzhou on the grounds of suspected violation of the U.S. sanctions against Iran. The U.S. also asked Canada to extradite Meng to the United States for trial. Moreover, according to a New York Times report on February 12, 2019, President Trump will issue an executive order to prohibit U.S. telecommunications operators from using Chinese equipment in the construction of next-generation wireless networks (NY Times, 2019a), thereby excluding Huawei and ZTE—especially Huawei, which is a leading technology company in 5G field—from 5G network rollout in the U.S. market. At the same time, the U.S. government launched high-profile international action against Huawei, demanding that the international community, especially American allies, follow the United States and ban Huawei from participating in the construction of 5G networks. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo even warned that the United States will not be able to partner or share information with countries using Huawei equipment (REUTERS, 2019). This is obviously a strong signal asking countries to choose between the United States and China.

      Rome was not build in a day. The United States' restrictions against China's leading ICT companies, Huawei and ZTE—especially against Huawei, which is more powerful—have been long in the making in treating them as threats to “national security”. Concrete policies and measures to prevent and restrict them are also being implemented. In this regard, both Republicans and Democrats, both the House of Representatives and the Senate, and the federal government have reached a consensus.

      2.3. Analysis and Interpretation of U.S. actions against Huawei

      The U.S. arrest of Huawei's CFO and a series of strong actions against Huawei are not just legal and network security technology issues, but also geo-economic issues related to economic and technological competition. In other words, this is a geopolitical issue.

      Legal perspective
      It cannot be denied that the United States has also punished many American and other countries' companies violating U.S. sanctions, but it is extremely rare to directly arrest company executives (Project Syndicate, 2018). In the view of Huawei's founder Ren Zhengfei (Meng Zhouzhou is also his daughter), the purpose of the U.S. move is to achieve the biggest hit on Huawei (Sina, 2019). Taking making business with Iran as a basis for punishment might be justified from a legal perspective, but it is very suspicious politically. Even if it is legally justified, there is still a possibility of “selective” law enforcement. As an article published in Forbes magazine pointed out, many U.S. companies trade all the time with Cuba, Iran, Sudan, and Syria. They just do so through intermediaries (Forbes, 2018). Moreover, the legal basis for supporting this arrest—“long arm jurisdiction”—is not a rule of international law. Many countries believe that it seriously violates the principle of international law that “a country should not exercise state power in the territory of another country”, therefore they do not recognize the validity of its jurisdiction. In the eyes of Beijing, the U.S. is exercising its state power to suppress a Chinese company regarded as a source of national pride in China: the substance of the issue is that the U.S. is using legal means to replace fair market competition.

      Network security perspective
      Given the strategic importance of 5G infrastructure, the U.S. government places great emphasis on cyber security. In order to address concerns about China's rapidly increasing influence on the global communications supply chain, the National Security Council has had the idea of building a “nationalized” national 5G network by the state rather than private operators so as to strengthen control over the network (Bode, 2018). Although this plan has not been implemented, considering that the United States has a liberal tradition of "small government, big market" and has always avoided excessive involvement of the state in economic affairs, the U.S. government's unprecedented emphasis on 5G network security should by no means be underestimated.

      For Huawei, entering the markets of developed countries like the United States and Western Europe is of particular importance. On the one hand, the huge size of the U.S. and European markets is very attractive for Huawei—which is extremely focused on business expansion. If Huawei's products and solutions are recognized by highly demanding European and American customers, this will have a great demonstration effect for other countries. Therefore, Huawei often invests a lot of resources at all costs and does not miss any opportunity to enter the European and American markets. In 2010, in order to address the British government's concerns about the safety of Huawei products, Huawei and UK's highest-level intelligence department, the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), jointly established Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre, which is responsible for conducting the safety assessment of Huawei's products deployed in the UK market. On February 21, 2019, the Financial Times reported that Ciaran Martin, Director of the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) under GCHQ, said he was confident that the UK network security authority will be able to control any risk posed by Huawei even if the British government allowed it to participate in the construction of a 5G network. In a speech in Brussels, Martin said that although US intelligence agencies raised concerns about espionage and disruption, he believed that strict controls and supervision could offset the risks (Financial Times, 2019).

      The United Kingdom is a close ally of the United States, and the NCSC has had many years of practical experience in assessing the safety of Huawei products. Therefore, the conclusions of the UK cyber security authority are quite weighty, indicating that security concerns about Huawei's products can, at least, be technically addressed. Although the United States has always suspected that Huawei's products have a "back door" which could be used by the Chinese government and military to engage in espionage, this has never been proved. Therefore, it is difficult to believe that the debate on security issues around Huawei is only a purely technical issue.

      Geo-economic competition over 5G technologies
      The Trump Administration believes that the world is engaged in a new arms race. Although this is a competition involving technology, not conventional weapons, it poses an equally significant threat to U.S. national security. In an era in which the most powerful weapons are controlled by computer networks, any country which dominates 5G technology will have economic, intelligence, and military advantages throughout this century. The United States has lagged behind Europe and China in the eras of 3G and 4G, and Huawei's overall lead in 5G technologies has further worried the United States. Therefore, the United States is determined to take all possible measures to block Huawei in order not to lose in this vital competition (NY Times, 2019b).

      According to Jeffrey Sachs, a professor at Columbia University, “Quite transparently, the U.S. action against Meng is really part of the Trump Administration's broader attempt to undermine China's economy by imposing tariffs, closing Western markets to Chinese high-technology exports, and blocking Chinese purchases of US and European technology companies. One can say, without exaggeration, that this is part of an economic war on China, and a reckless one at that. America’s motivations in this economic war are partly commercial—to protect and favor laggard US companies—and partly geopolitical. They certainly have nothing to do with upholding the international rule of law. The Trump Administration, not Huawei or China, is today's greatest threat to the international rule of law, and therefore to global peace (Project Syndicate, 2018)."

      Economic development is fundamentally driven by innovation. Although the United States still has overall advantages, China is catching up quickly in all directions. In some areas, such as 5G, China is even ahead of the U.S. For the U.S., loss of technological dominance is unacceptable and it is determined to use all its means to defend its innovation advantages. In the Sino-American trade war, the real interests of the United States lie in not just reducing its trade deficit towards China. Since a large part Chinese exports actually come from American companies, the trade deficit is actually not the root cause of the trade war and China's gains are not as large as the numbers indicate. If the goal is only to reduce the trade deficit, then China is actually willing to make concessions and the negotiations should have reached an agreement. The real purpose of the United States is to stop the advancement of China's high-tech industry (BBC, 2019a).

      Geopolitical competition and ideological confrontation between the U.S. and China
      In fact, Huawei's huge market share in Europe shows that it is widely accepted in Western countries. However, the key issue is that Huawei is a Chinese company. William R. Evanina, the Director of U.S National Counterintelligence and Security Center, said, “It's important to remember that Chinese company relationships with the Chinese government are not like private sector company relationships with governments in the West. China's National Intelligence Law passed in 2017 requires Chinese companies to support, assist and cooperate with China's intelligence agencies, wherever these companies operate (NY Times, 2019b).” China is an authoritarian country and a Chinese company like Huawei is unable to resist the demands of the Chinese government. Therefore, the network equipment of Huawei poses a potential threat to the national security of the U.S. (BBC, 2019b). At the Munich Security Conference held in February 2019, the U.S. Vice President Mike Pence once again emphasized that “The United States has also been very clear with our security partners on the threat posed by Huawei and other Chinese telecom companies, as Chinese law requires them to provide Beijing's vast security apparatus with access to any data that touches their network or equipment (SCMP, 2019)”. This shows that the United States is worried not about Huawei per se but China's state apparatus as a whole: the actions against Huawei are not only pure legal issues, but also a significant geopolitical action.

      Heli Tiirmaa-Klaar, an Estonian diplomat involved in cyber security discussions with American and European officials about Huawei, said Europe was shifting on Huawei because of suspicions about China rather than any specific behavior of this company. She highlighted China's history of hacking and stealing trade secrets, its poor record on human rights and internet censorship, and Chinese cyber security rules that could require Chinese enterprises to defend China's national security interests (NY Times, 2019c).

      James Andrew Lewis, the Senior Vice President and Director of Technology Policy Program from the American think-tank, Center for Strategic and International Studies, believes that “If China was not a strategic competitor, buying Chinese telecom equipment would pose little risk, and commercial partnership would serve both sides (Lewis, 2018).” But, unfortunately, according to the National Security Strategy released by the Trump Administration in December 2017, the United States has regarded China as its primary strategic competitor. This means that Huawei, as a Chinese company, will pose a major threat to the national security of the U.S. through its communication network equipment. Therefore, the issue of Huawei has actually become a matter of geopolitical competition between the United States and China.

      In addition, the ideological differences between the U.S. and China have also played a role in this dispute. In the eyes of the United States, China's authoritarian state capitalism model is significantly different from the liberal market capitalism of Western countries. At present, this model has a certain attraction to some developing countries. Given its great success over the past few decades and its huge scale, China is now eligible to compete against the Western model. In recent years, China has vigorously promoted its “Belt and Road Initiative”. From the perspective of the United States, China is not only pushing through its geopolitical “grand strategy”, but also trying to export its development model which is remarkably different from the “Washington Consensus”. Thus, China is increasingly challenging the international order and structure established and dominated by the U.S. and Western countries in not only geopolitical but also ideological terms.

      Since Huawei has achieved great business success, especially in overseas markets, most Chinese people prefer to ignore the ruthless management of this company and regard it as emblematic of China's national pride. The United States' attack on this company, widely admired in China, without incontrovertible grounds will probably provoke Chinese people's nationalist sentiments, thus boosting the influence of nationalist forces in China's domestic politics and further strengthening China's authoritarian regime. Therefore, in terms of promoting more “liberalization” in China, the actions against Huawei seems to be counterproductive.

      3. Overview of Huawei in Germany and the dilemma facing Germany

      3.1. Overview of Huawei in Germany

      As early as 2001, Huawei began to develop business in Germany. After years of efforts, all of its three major businesses groups (carrier business group, consumer business group, and enterprise business group) have made great progress. At present, Huawei is the prime strategic partner of Germany's three major telecommunications operators (Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, and Telefonica) in terms of supplying network equipment. For the smartphone business, Huawei's market share has surpassed Apple and made it the second largest mobile phone brand after Samsung. In addition, Huawei provides products and solutions of cloud computing, Internet of Things, enterprise network, and network security for various industrial sectors. It has also achieved major breakthroughs, such as building a smart city for Duisburg and providing high performance computing solutions for BMW.

      For Huawei, the German market is of extreme importance—perhaps second next to the Chinese market. On the one hand, the German market is huge; on the other hand, Huawei is a company coming from a developing country, therefore its Chinese managers are extremely eager to win the acceptance and recognition of the main, established, Western developed countries such as the U.S., the UK, France, and Germany. However, the United States, the UK, and France have imposed more restrictions on Huawei than Germany. Germany's attitude towards Huawei is relatively more pragmatic, allowing this Chinese company to utilize Germany's free and open economic environment to gradually grow into a heavyweight player. Huawei is also trying to make its projects in Germany references for its customers around the world. Therefore, Huawei has made huge investments in Germany regardless of cost. In 2007, Huawei moved its European headquarters from the UK to Düsseldorf, a western German city, and established its European R&D center in Munich to manage its 18 R&D institutions across Europe. From 2014 to 2018, Huawei invested US$400 million in Munich. By the end of 2015, Huawei had more than 2,000 employees in Germany, it is now one of the largest Chinese enterprises in Germany (MA REVIEW, 2016). Today, Huawei is prominent in Germany and industries and federal governments must think carefully when dealing with issues related to Huawei.

      3.2. Germany's dilemma in taking sides between the U.S. and China

      The United States has not only banned the purchase of Huawei's products in the U.S., but also launched a high-profile international action against Huawei and urged its allies to join it. Currently, among the countries of the U.S.-led “Five Eyes Intelligence Alliance” (U.S., UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand), Australia and New Zealand have decided to follow the U.S. The UK has not yet decided, but British Telecom (BT) has decided that in the future Huawei shall be excluded from the core network of the 5G (but Huawei is still allowed to participate in the construction of wireless network). Moreover, BT will dismantle Huawei's equipment in the existing core network; Canada has not yet made a decision. In addition, Japan, as a close ally of the United States in East Asia and China's geopolitical rival, also announced in December 2018 that Huawei would be excluded from the government procurement list. Japan's three major telecommunications operators also indicated that they would follow the government's decision to prevent Huawei from participating in construction of its 5G network (BBC, 2019c).

      Among the European allies of the U.S., Germany's decision is crucial and all of Europe is watching Germany. According to the political news website POLITICO, in a closed-door meeting in December 2018, U.S. technology experts presented German policymakers with information they described as “reasons” to exclude Chinese telecom giant Huawei from the rollout of 5G technology in Germany. U.S. officials know Berlin's attitude is crucial when it comes to setting the tone toward Huawei across Europe. As the bloc's largest economy, Germany's decision on whether to restrict the Chinese company is likely to serve as a model for other European countries, many of which depend on Berlin's cyber security expertise (POLITICO, 2018). It will also determine whether the U.S. campaign is as successful in Europe as it was in Australia, Japan, and New Zealand.

      Given that Germany will auction 5G spectrum in the spring of 2019 and that telecommunications operators are in the process of starting 5G construction, this sudden pressure from its powerful traditional ally, the U.S., is putting Germany in a dilemma. On the one hand, Germany must seriously consider the demands of the U.S. On the other hand, in complying with the U.S. Germany risks angering China—an emerging superpower and Germany's largest trading partner. Hence, it is very difficult for Germany to make a choice.

      3.3. The opinions of German stakeholders on Huawei

      Although all parties are turning their attention to the German federal government on the question of whether to allow Huawei to participate in construction of the 5G network in Germany, as a democratic country the German government cannot ignore the opinions of other stakeholders. It must consider both domestic and international factors in order to make a final decision. The following is a brief analysis:

      Telecommunications operators (Deutsche Telecom, Vodafone, and Telefonica)
      Deutsche Telekom is the largest multinational telecommunications operator in Europe and has enjoyed a good relationship with Huawei for many years. On the one hand, Deutsche Telekom CEO Timotheus Höttges said, “the security of the network infrastructure, both past and present, is very important for us.” On the other hand, Deutsche Telekom continues to cooperate with Huawei. Given Huawei's technological leadership and price advantages, the progress of Deutsche Telekom's 5G rollout will get inevitably delayed and its construction costs increase if Huawei is not allowed to participate in the construction of the 5G network (Handelsblatt, 2019a).

      Nick Read, CEO of the UK-based Vodafone Group's German subsidiary, expressed some support for Huawei. He said, "We cannot ignore the fact that Huawei has occupied 35% of the entire European market. If Huawei is excluded, the progress of 5G network construction will be slowed down and the cost will increase. We need to clearly define which parts of the network can be built by Huawei, whether it is a sensitive core network or just a wireless access network." Given the security concerns, Vodafone decided that Huawei's products will no longer be used in the core network. However, Nick Read also defended Huawei. He said, "I feel that Huawei is open to the current situation and is working hard to improve the security of its products (Handelsblatt, 2019b)."

      Telefonica O2, another major German telecommunications operator, has opinions similar to Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone. It too does not want to ban Huawei from participating in its network construction.

      In order to address security concerns, Deutsche Telekom even suggested establishing a technical supervision agency similar to TÜV to ensure the security of network equipment, for which Vodafone and Telefonica expressed their support (SZ, 2019).

      German industry
      Although the Federation of German Industries (Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie, BDI), an organization representing the interests of German industries, has in an recently issued a policy document highlighted the challenges of China's state control model to Europe and Germany, it also emphasized that “a general ‘containment’ of China or ‘de-coupling’ (in the U.S. this term is used to discuss the disengagement in economic ties with China) is not an option; German industry advocates ex-change and cooperation (BDI, 2019)”. BDI also demonstrated its independence in safeguarding the interests of the German industry in deliberating whether or not Huawei should be allowed to participate in the construction of a 5G network in Germany. BDI Chairman Dieter Kempf clearly warned against excluding Huawei from the construction of 5G networks. He believes that this will lead China to take countermeasures, which will hurt the interests of German enterprises in China. At the same time, Dieter Kempf also supports the opinions of telecommunications operators that the exclusion of Huawei will limit the choice of suppliers and therefore result in increased network construction costs. Kempf further criticized the U.S. government's pressure to impose pressure on Germany. He said, “The United States could be tempted ... to enforce its own sanctions on others with its economic power. It seems that the motto is ‘who my enemy is, must also be my friend's enemy’.” However, that is not his philosophy, emphasized the BDI President: “And it contradicts our European idea of free, rule-based world trade (FAZ, 2019a).”

      IT Security Authority
      Arne Schönbohm, head of the German authority responsible for network security—Federal Office for IT Security (Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik, BSI)—made it clear that banning or allowing Huawei's participation in 5G network construction is a “political decision”. In other words, this is not a technology issue pertaining to network security. According to Arne Schönbohm, “BSI's mission is to ensure that Germany has a secure network architecture. Until now, the so-called “back door” of Huawei products that can shut down German telecommunications network has not been discovered (Handelsblatt, 2019c).”

      Intelligence service agency
      However, the attitude of the German intelligence service agency is much more pessimistic as they believe the use of Huawei's products would have risk of espionage and destruction. In the perspective of German intelligence service, the mobile telecommunications network is a critical infrastructure and must be specially protected—and the risk that Huawei may install a "back door" cannot be overlooked. Although the argument of "back door" is only an unconfirmed suspicion, Gerhard Schindler, the former director of the Federal Intelligence Agency (Bundesnachrichtendienst, BND), said, "Telecommunications technology provider is also capable of intercepting communications, you can deploy security systems and minimize risk, but the risk is still there." Schindler estimates that Huawei has been leading the 5G technology for one and a half to two years, so that the German state apparatus simply cannot judge which modules Huawei has installed. This means, “In times of crisis, if these modules are shut down, we will be unprepared and unable to react (DW, 2019).”

      Federal Ministry of the Interior and Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs
      Given the security concern, the German Federal Ministry of the Interior is discussing with the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs to revise the German telecommunications law to de facto exclude Huawei. According to the Ministry of the Interior, the Telecommunications Law should make the following changes: telecommunications operators and equipment suppliers must be able to ensure that there is no (foreign) state influence. However, the revision of the Telecommunications Law is a long process, which means that in theory the current German law cannot exclude any foreign suppliers (including Huawei) from construction of the 5G network (DW, 2019).

      Ministry of Foreign Affairs
      The German Foreign Ministry seems to be oblivious to the fact that China is Germany's largest trading partner and both countries have a strategic partnership. Their attitude is similar with that of the Ministry of the Interior. A spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stressed that Huawei is a Chinese company subject to Chinese law, and expressed concern that Chinese companies have the obligation to cooperate with Chinese intelligence agencies (DW, 2019).

      German Chancellor
      As the head of the German government, Merkel has always been cautious about important issues, especially the sensitive issue of taking sides between the two most powerful countries in the world. On February 5, 2019, Merkel said during her visit to Japan, "Given the security concerns, it is necessary to discuss with the Chinese government that companies (of China) cannot pass data to (Chinese) state (FAZ, 2019b)." She is actually setting conditions for Huawei to participate in the construction of the 5G network in Germany. It cannot be denied that Merkel is a seasoned politician. She has exerted "strategic ambiguity" to avoid clearly taking sides between the United States and China by considering the demands of both countries. Of course, it is also possible that she is buying time in order to make final choice.

      In addition to the stakeholders such as telecommunications operators, German industry, and the German government, it must be mentioned that Germany is a democratic country and public opinions often play a role in government decision-making. Accordingly, it is difficult to ignore the fact that German media reports on China are mostly negative.

      China is Germany's largest trading partner and German companies have huge investments and economic interests in the Chinese market. Germany and China have established comprehensive and profound strategic partnerships. Moreover, as a middle power, Germany does not have the ambition, will, and resources to confront China geopolitically. However, the United States is Germany's traditional ally and a powerful provider of security. The tough demands of the U.S. have given the German government a difficult choice. The final decision of the German government is still unclear. However, what is clear is that the German government will not make decisions quickly, but will carefully evaluate the situation and find the best balance in line with German interests. Some people even think that, given the importance of this matter, the German parliament and not the German government will have the final say (KN, 2019).

      4. Can the United States form a united front against Huawei?

      Although the United States has spent a lot of efforts to convince its allies and other countries not to use Huawei's network equipment, it has had only limited results. At present, only the governments of Australia, New Zealand, and Japan have clearly stated that Huawei will be excluded from the construction of 5G networks (BBC, 2019c). However, on February 19, 2019 the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, said that her government had not yet made a final decision on use of Huawei's equipment in the 5G network (VOA, 2019). Therefore, to date, only Australia and Japan have explicitly followed the United States.

      These signs show that this time the United States might have difficulties in successfully forming a united front against Huawei and China. Some European commentators believe that President Trump has undermined the trust between Europe and the United States, making it difficult for Europe to choose between China and the United States. At present, European countries will take precautions against Huawei, especially in its role as supplier of core networks, but they are not willing to explicitly exclude Huawei from the entire 5G network. Of course, Europe also knows that Huawei is not completely irreplaceable. The restrictions on Huawei may be beneficial to European suppliers of telecommunications equipment: Ericsson from Sweden, Nokia from Finland, and Alcatel-Lucent from France.

      If a Sino-American confrontation is on the line, then the ability of the United States to form alliances and control allies seems to be declining as compared to Cold War 1.0. In March 2015, as the closest ally of the United States, the United Kingdom did not hesitate to anger the United States and joined the China-led “Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank” (AIIB). Like other middle powers, Britain relies no longer solely on the United States but bets on both sides. For the UK, this is a matter of life and death. The focus of British economy lies in the service sectors, especially the financial service industry. If the UK cannot serve the financial and economic interests of a rising China, then the UK will be marginalized in the 21st century. In fact, apart from cooperating with China, the UK does not have much choice (Lind, 2018).

      Other European allies of the United States are also reluctant to sacrifice their commercial interests with respect to China by blindly obeying America's strategic needs. Compared with the formidable Soviet Red Army in Cold War 1.0 period, China's growing military power does not pose a direct threat to Western Europe. Ideologically, China is not as aggressive as the former Soviet Union which claimed to "bury the capitalist system". If the United States intends to contain China from now on, it would be difficult to win full recognition and acceptance of the Western European countries as it did during Cold War 1.0. Of course, the United States might not be very concerned about this. For the United States, the most important partners to contain China can be found in Asia-Pacific region: Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan are much more important in this regard than Western Europe. The "Indo-Pacific strategy" proposed by Japan, supported by Australia and India, and finally accepted by the United States, will become the main geopolitical strategy to contain China. The "democratic security diamond" comprising of the United States, Japan, Australia, and India will probably become a multilateral military alliance similar to NATO in Europe. Moreover, even if "old Europe" (France and Germany) does not follow the instructions of the U.S., the United States can still find more obedient partners in "New Europe" (Central and Eastern European countries).

      With its considerable strength and remaining leadership, the United States could form a united front to contain China. However, the internal solidarity of this coalition is quite suspicious. During the Cold War 1.0 period, the Eastern Bloc broke out between China and the Soviet Union. China turned to the United States and it was a strategic blow to Soviet leadership. Similarly, inside the Western Group, President Charles de Gaulle of France promoted independent foreign policy, built independent nuclear power, and withdrew from NATO. Even loyal West Germany advocated a “New Eastern Policy” under the Brandt government, under which West Germany tried to improve relations with the Eastern Bloc countries: this demonstrated the independence of West Germany. In 2003, the United States insisted on starting a war against Iraq, but France and Germany were openly and resolutely opposed. Similarly, in 2015, the UK, France, and Germany joined the China-led AIIB at the price of angering the United States. Therefore, even if the United States can successfully form a united front to contain China, it cannot guarantee that the member states will fully obey its will, and American values do not allow the United States to suppress the indiscretions of its allies by using force, as the former Soviet Union did with Hungary (1956) and with Czechoslovakia (1956) during the Cold War 1.0.

      However, it is debatable if Germany will be able to withstand pressure from the United States on the issue of Huawei. After Tian'anmeng incident in 1989, Europe and the United States imposed an arms embargo on China. For years, China has been trying to persuade the EU to lift the embargo. The then German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder supported China's request, and together with France vigorously promoted the lifting of the EU arms embargo on China. However, due to strong opposition from the United States, the effort finally failed. In some sense, today's issue of Huawei's entry into 5G network construction is similar to China's request to ask the EU to lift the arms embargo.

      5. The prelude to Cold War 2.0?

      On March 5, 1946, accompanied by U.S. President Truman, Churchill made the famous "Iron Curtain" speech in the United States, giving voice to the serious and urgent threat of Soviet expansionism. Churchill's speech is widely regarded as a crucial moment in the genesis of the Cold War. U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence's tough speech on China at the Hudson Institute in October 2018 was also considered by many to be a mobilization for Cold War 2.0 against China, which can be compared with Churchill's speech to open Cold War 1.0. If the United States and China are entering a new cold war, this time it would be significantly different from the old Cold War. The former Soviet Union relied mainly on its formidable military power to confront the West and posed a direct military threat to Western Europe. Moreover, the communism of the Eastern Bloc and the liberal democracy of the Western countries also constituted a fierce ideological confrontation. However, the rise of China is mainly due to its unprecedented economic development and rapid progress in science and technology. Its people's living standards have improved significantly: this, in turn, constitutes an important and main source of the legitimacy for the rule of the Chinese Communist Party. Another source is nationalism, but nationalism has always been a dangerous double-edged sword and Chinese rulers must use this force carefully. Therefore, if the United States wants to launch a new Cold War against China, economy and technology will be the main battlefields and the confrontation of military power and ideology will play a secondary role. However, if the United States and China cannot properly manage and control conflicts between them, it cannot be ruled out that the economic and technological contests will escalate to a full-scale confrontation of military power and ideology.

      In this context, as the epitome of China's rise and an outstanding representative of China's scientific and technological progress and economic development, Huawei has become the primary target of the United States. This is not surprising: it is a logical development of the U.S.-China confrontation.

      One year after Churchill's "Iron Curtain" speech, in March 1947, US President Truman gave a speech in Congress, which was later called "Trumanism". Truman announced that the United States was willing to provide economic and military assistance to the Greece government to fight against the Communist Party. Turkey faced a similar situation as Greece and would also receive U.S. aid. Trumanism meant the end of the alliance with the Soviet Union during the World War II and marked the beginning of the Cold War, since then the United States began to provide financial means to contain the Soviet Union. Similarly, US Vice President Pence's tough speech against China might be a public mobilization. Shortly afterwards, a comprehensive attack on Huawei started, probably marking the beginning of the new Cold War against China. The previous crackdown on ZTE could be considered a strategic rehearsal. The result was a great success. The Chinese side accepted all U.S. demands, even the assignment of U.S. inspectors to ZTE at ZTE's costs. Success of the action against ZTE is likely to give US the confidence to beat Huawei.

      The U.S.-China trade war was initiated by the United States. It is hard to conclude that China is willing to participate in this conflict that may terminate its rise. However, China's eagerness to seek success and its daring strategic advances in recent years have probably led it into a “Thucydides trap”. Now that China has abandoned Deng Xiaoping's strategy of keeping a low profile, it will surely bring the U.S.-China showdown ahead of schedule—which will be greatly detrimental to its own future.

      6. Conclusion

      The actions of the U.S. against Huawei, emblematic of Chinese national pride, have touched sensitive nerves in both countries. The U.S. and China seem to be accelerating their fall into the so-called "Thucydides trap": this has led to overwhelming discussions and uneasiness around the world. The arrest of Huawei's CFO and the subsequent demand to ban Huawei from participating in the construction of vital 5G networks is not only a legal issue, technical issue, and geo-economic issue: it is also a geopolitical issue. Only in this context would we be able to understand why the U.S, a superpower, is worried about a Chinese company. Since the end of the Cold War, the world has undergone profound changes and a major power shift is taking place. The United States has gradually reached a conclusion that China is its prime strategic competitor, capable of challenging American hegemony over and above Russia, its traditional rival. The United States will not tolerate the strategic balance to continue leaning towards China. Under the leadership of President Trump, the United States will take firm and decisive actions to ensure that the United States continues to be the superpower with world hegemony. Faced with this situation, most countries are unable to stay outside. In the turmoil of whether or not Huawei should be allowed to participate in the construction of a 5G network, Germany is at the forefront of the storm and faces a difficult choice between the U.S. and China. Germany's decision will have a major demonstration effect, and all of Europe is watching Germany. However, Germany should not make a quick choice. Instead, it should carefully evaluate the situation, consider all parties' attitudes, repeatedly calculate the pros and cons, and then take a final decision that should be in line with German interests.

      7. References

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      DW (2019). Deutsche Sicherheitsbehörden warnen vor Huawei. Available at: https://www.dw.com/de/deutsche-sicherhei...awei/a-47301398 (accessed March 6, 2019).

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      FAZ (2019b). Merkel stellt Bedingungen für Huawei-Auftrag. Available at: https://www.faz.net/aktuell/wirtschaft/d...u-16024961.html (accessed March 6, 2019).

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      Forbes (2018). The Feds Shamefully Persecute China's Huawei For Being Too Successful. Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/johntamny/2...too-successful/ (accessed March 6, 2019).

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      Handelsblatt (2019b). Vodafone hält Huawei beim 5G-Aufbau die Treue – doch nicht bedingungslos. Available at: https://www.handelsblatt.com/unternehmen...s/23910294.html (accessed March 6, 2019).

      Handelsblatt (2019c). BSI-Chef hält sich aus Streit um Huawei und 5G heraus. Available at: https://www.handelsblatt.com/politik/deu...teaxI7YXN6H-ap2 (accessed March 6, 2019).

      KN (2019). Die Huawei-Entscheidung gehört ins Parlament. Available at: http://www.kn-online.de/Nachrichten/Poli...t-ins-Parlament (accessed March 6, 2019).

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    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "美中对抗与德国站队 - 谁将赢得新时代的军备竞赛(5G)?" geschrieben. 24.02.2019

      1 引言

      华为公司被广泛认为是中国最杰出、最强大和最具进攻精神的ICT(Information Communication Technology)企业,一直致力于进入美国市场。但是与在全球市场不断开疆拓土的卓越业绩截然相反的是,华为长期以来未能实现在美国市场的重大突破,原因是美国的国家机构以国家安全为由阻止美国客户购买华为产品、解决方案和服务。进入2018年以来,美国对华为公司发起了迄今为止最为严厉的打击行动。2018年12月,美国司法部以该公司涉嫌违反美国对伊朗的制裁为由,下令逮捕其CFO孟晚舟,并要求加拿大将孟引渡至美国受审。与此同时,美国决定禁止华为参与至关重要的5G网络建设。有充分的迹象显示,美国的国家机构已经将打击这家极为成功、且被视为中国崛起缩影的科技企业变成了一个重要的战略目标,并不遗余力地动员其传统和新兴盟友加入这个行列。

      与在美国市场受到的冷遇和防范形成鲜明对比的是,德国却相当欢迎华为的投资和经营活动。而华为也特别看重德国市场,将其西欧总部设在德国西部城市杜塞尔多夫。这不仅仅是因为德国在欧洲首屈一指的市场规模,更重要的是,德国作为一个主要的发达国家,其接受和认可对华为的全球市场拓展具有非凡的示范意义。多年来,华为公司在德国持续投入大量资源,市场版图不断扩张。德国对华为之重要,以至于华为德国公司公关部负责人Torsten Küpper称德国是华为的“第二故乡” 。

      但是,作为德国自二战结束以来的最强大盟友和安全保护提供者,美国敦促德国效法澳大利亚、新西兰和日本等美国盟国,禁止华为参加5G网络建设,加入其打击华为公司的国际行动。为此,德国面临在美中两个世界最强大国之间选边站的艰难决定。

      本文并不致力于预测德国将如何选边站,而是试图系统性地分析德美两国在对待华为公司的立场和政策方面的异同及其原因、德国内部各方对华为问题的立场、影响德国抉择的因素以及德国决策对德中关系和变动中世界格局的影响。

      2 华为的美国之路及美国对华为的政策

      2.1 华为在美国的发展历程

      美国是全球首屈一指的通讯设备市场,2016年的市场容量达到832.2亿美元 ,预计到2025年将增加到1251亿美元 。因此,突破美国市场,对志向远大的华为公司具有决定性的战略意义。

      早在1999年,华为就在达拉斯开设了一个研究所,专门针对美国市场开发产品。2001年6月,华为在美国德克萨斯州成立全资子公司FutureWei,开始向当地企业销售宽带和数据产品 。

      随着华为在美国市场的挺进,针对华为产品的质疑同步而来。2003年初,Cisco向美国德克萨斯州法院起诉华为侵犯其知识产权。经过长达一年半的专利之争,双方最终达成了和解。但是这场纷争严重影响了华为在美国市场的声誉,使得华为业务进展非常缓慢。

      2007年,华为与美国移动运营商LeapWireless达成第一次合作,开始取得一些市场进展。但是,华为主要是为一些中小型运营商提供服务,一直不能进入美国市场的四大主流通讯运营商(Verizon、AT&T、Sprint和T-Mobile)。

      2008年以后,华为试图采取并购策略进入美国,却屡屡受阻。其标志性的事件如下 :

      三次并购被否
       2008年华为试图与贝恩资本联合并购3Com,被美国外国投资委员会(CFIUS)否决;
       2010年华为试图收购摩托罗拉的无线资产,同样被美国政府拒绝;
       2010年华为试图并购宽带网络软件厂商2Wire,但因对方担心无法获批而失败。

      一次专利并购被否
       2010年,华为以200万美元收购了3Leaf的专利技术,但该项交易再次被CFIUS认为“会威胁美国安全”,华为最终于2011年2月撤销该交易。

      除并购失败外,华为与AT&T 的4G设备合约(2009年)以及与Sprint的4G设备合约(2010年),分别在美国国家安全局(NSA) 和美国商务部 的干预下被否决。

      2012年10月,在对华为、中兴展开了超过一年的调查后,美国众议院情报委员会发布报告称,“华为和中兴是中国政府的工具,从美国公司偷窃知识产权,并有对美国开展间谍活动的可能性”,因此,这两家公司“构成对美国国家安全的威胁”,并警告美国电信公司不要采购他们的设备 。

      在众议院报告发布之后,美国通讯运营商的网络设备市场实际上已经对华为关闭,但是华为仍然试图在美国销售手机等终端产品,然而同样受到强烈限制。2018年1月,在美国国会议员的敦促下,美国大型通讯运营商AT&T临时取消了与华为的智能手机交易,原因同样是担心华为“会对美国国家安全造成威胁” 。

      2018年3月,根据CFIUS的建议,美国总统Trump亲自下令,否决新加坡公司Broadcom以1170亿美元收购美国著名的通讯芯片和无线技术公司Qualcomm(高通)。原因是CFIUS担心,Broadcom收购成功后将导致削减对Qualcomm在研发方面的投资,从而间接有利于Qualcomm的中国竞争对手华为公司,进而危及美国的“国家安全” 。Trump政府极度担忧华为这家中国公司获得相对于美国的技术优势和支配地位,尤其是在被称为新时代军备竞赛战场的5G移动通信领域。与之前历届美国政府相比,Trump政府对华为公司的防范可谓有增无减。

      不仅美国政府,美国国会对华为和中兴这两家中国ICT企业的警惕有过之而无不及。继2012年众议院情报委员会报告后,参议院在2018年7月22日通过的“2019年度John S. McCain国防授权法案”中明确要求:禁止联邦政府(作者注:还没有明令禁止美国企业)采购任何华为或中兴的设备或服务 ,也禁止参与、延长或更新合同。

      2.2 美国发起打击华为的行动

      2018年12月初,美国司法部以涉嫌违反美国对伊朗制裁禁令为由,发出了对华为CFO孟晚舟的拘捕令,并要求加拿大将在该国转机的孟引渡至美国受审。而且,据《纽约时报》在2019年2月12日的报道,Trump政府将发布一项行政命令,禁止美国电信公司在建设下一代无线网络时使用中国设备 ,从而将华为和中兴,尤其是将在5G领域全面领先的华为公司拒之门外。与此同时,美国政府发起了一项针对华为的、高调的国际行动,要求国际社会尤其是盟国跟随美国,禁止中国的华为公司参与5G网络建设。美国国务卿Mike Pompeo甚至警告说,美国将不能与那些使用华为设备的国家成为伙伴或共享信息 。这显然是发出了要求各国在美中之间选边站的强烈信号。

      由此可见,美国对中国ICT领军企业华为和中兴的防范和限制,尤其是对更强大的华为的深重戒心,乃是“冰冻三尺非一日之寒”,且已经上升到了“国家安全”的高度,并正在推进落实具体的限制政策。对此,美国的共和民主两党、国会参众两院和联邦政府,均达成了高度的共识,十多年来一以贯之。

      2.3 对美国打击华为行动的分析解读

      美国拘捕华为CFO的行动以及禁止采购华为产品的一系列大阵仗事件,是一个法律问题,也是一个网络安全技术问题,同时还是一个与经济和科技竞争有关的地缘经济问题,更深层次上是一个地缘政治问题。

      法律角度
      从法律角度来看,不能否认美国也曾经处罚了诸多违反美国制裁禁令的美国和它国公司,但是直接拘捕公司高管,却是极为罕见的行动 。在华为创始人任正非(孟晚舟也是她的女儿)看来,美国此举的目的是要达到对华为最大的打击效果 。拿与伊朗做生意作为处罚依据,也许在法律上能够成立,但在政治意图上却非常可疑。即便在法律意义上说得过去,但也存在“选择性”执法的可能。正如美国Forbes杂志上一篇文章指出,其实很多美国公司同样与受到制裁的“古巴、伊朗、苏丹和叙利亚”等国做生意,只不过是通过第三方来进行 。而且,支撑此次拘捕行动的法律依据 – “长臂管辖”,也并非国际法的通行规则,很多国家认为它严重违背“一个国家不应该在另一个国家的领土上行使国家权力”国际法原则,而不承认其管辖权效力。在北京眼里,这是美国在动用国家力量打压一家被奉为民族骄傲的中国企业,其本质是用法律手段来代替公平竞争。

      网络安全角度
      考虑到5G基础设施的战略重要性,美国政府高度重视网络安全。为消除对中国在全球通讯供应链上迅速增加的影响力的担忧,美国国家安全委员会曾经有过由国家而不是私营运营商来建设“国有化”全国5G网络的设想,以加强对网络的控制 。虽然这个计划未能得到实行,但考虑到美国有“小政府、大市场”的自由主义传统,一直避免国家过多介入经济事务,美国政府对5G网络安全前所未有的重视程度可见一斑。

      对于华为来说,进入美国和西欧发达国家市场具有特别重要的意义,一方面是因为美欧市场容量巨大,对极为注重业务扩张的华为公司来说是兵家必争之地;另一方面是因为如果华为的产品和解决方案能够得到高标准严要求的欧美客户认可,将产生极大的全球示范效应,从而对其全球市场扩张具有不可估量的正面作用。因此,华为往往是不惜代价地持续投入大量资源,不放过任何一个进入欧美市场的机会。2010年,为消除英国政府对华为产品安全性的担忧,华为与英国最高级别的情报部门 – 政府通信总部(GCHQ)联合建立了“华为网络安全评估中心”( Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre),专门负责对华为部署在英国市场的产品进行安全评估。2019年2月21日,英国《金融时报》的报道称,GCHQ下属的国家网络安全中心(National Cyber Security Centre,NCSC)的主任Ciaran Martin表示,他有信心认为,如果英国政府决定让华为参与未来的5G网络,英国网络安全部门可以管控这家中国电信设备制造商构成的任何风险。在布鲁塞尔发表的一次演讲中, Ciaran Martin表示,尽管美国情报机构提出了关于间谍活动和扰乱的担忧,但他相信严格的控制和监督可以抵消风险 。

      英国是与美国有着所谓“英美特殊关系”的亲密盟国,而且在评估华为产品安全性方面拥有多年实际经验,因此英国网络安全部门的结论极具分量,表明对华为产品在安全方面的担忧至少在技术上是可以得到控制的。此外,尽管美国一直怀疑华为产品留有“后门”,很可能被中国政府和军方利用来从事间谍活动,但十多年来,美国却拿不出有力证据。因此,很难说围绕华为的安全问题争论仅仅是一个单纯的技术问题。

      地缘经济角逐:围绕5G展开的激烈竞争
      Trump政府认为,世界正在进行一场新的军备竞赛。虽然这是一场涉及技术,而非常规武器的竞赛,但对美国的国家安全构成同样重大的威胁。在一个由计算机网络控制着最强有力武器的时代,任何主导5G技术的国家,都将在本世纪的大部分时间拥有经济、情报和军事上的优势。美国已经在3G和4G的竞争中落后于欧洲和中国,而华为在5G领域的全面领先,更让美国担心不已。因此,美国决心通过阻止华为,以确保不输掉这场至关重要的竞争 。

      美国哥伦比亚大学教授Jeffrey Sachs撰文指出,“很明显,美国拘捕孟晚舟的行动是Trump政府更广泛的削弱中国经济的努力的一部分,其它手段还包括增加关税、对中国关闭高技术出口市场和阻止中国收购美欧科技公司。不夸张地说,这是一场针对中国的经济战争,而且是一场轻率的战争。Trump政府,而非华为或中国,才是当今国际法治的最大威胁,而且危及全球和平 。”

      经济发展归根结底是由创新驱动。相对于中国,美国尽管还拥有总体上的优势,但中国正在全方位迅速追赶,在部分领域(如5G)还有超越美国之势头。科技创新优势地位的丧失,是美国不能接受的,所以美国决心采用各种手段坚决捍卫。在美中贸易战中,美国的真实诉求不仅是减少贸易逆差。由于中国出口的很大一部分实际上来自美国公司,因此单纯以贸易赤字为理由说不过去,中国从中获益没有数字显示那么大。如果目标只是减少贸易赤字,那么中国其实愿意做出让步,谈判早该达成协议。美国真正的目的是要阻止中国高科技产业的发展。

      美中地缘政治角逐和意识形态对抗
      实际上,华为在欧洲巨大的市场份额表明,华为公司的技术实力和创新能力在西方受到广泛承认和尊敬。然而,问题的关键在于华为是一家中国企业。美国国家反情报与安全中心(National Counterintelligence and Security Center)主任William R. Evanina称,“重要的是记住,中国企业与中国政府的关系不同于西方私营企业与西方政府的关系。中国2017年生效的《国家情报法》要求中国企业支持、协助和配合国家情报工作,不管它们在哪里经营。 ”美国认为,中国是一个威权统治的国家,作为一家中国公司,华为无法抵抗中国政府的要求,从而使得其生产的网络设备构成潜在威胁 。在2019年2月举行的慕尼黑安全会议上,美国副总统Pence再次强调了中国的法律允许其庞大的安全机构有权要求中国企业配合其行动 。不过,这恰恰说明美国担心的并不是华为公司本身,而是中国的国家机构;针对华为的行动不仅是单纯的法律行为,而且还是一场果断的地缘政治行动。

      参与了与欧美官员讨论华为网络安全问题的爱沙尼亚外交官Heli Tiirmaa-Klaar称,欧洲对华为的转变是因为怀疑中国,而不是这家公司的具体行为。她特别指出中国的黑客攻击和盗窃行业机密的历史,其在人权和网络审查上的糟糕记录,以及可能要求网络企业保卫国家安全利益的中国网络安全法规。

      美国智库“战略与国际研究中心”的James Andrew Lewis认为,“如果中国不是一个战略竞争对手,那么购买中国电信设备只有很小的风险,商业伙伴关系对双方都是有利的。 ”但不幸的是,根据Trump政府在2017年12月发布的《国家安全战略》,美国已经视中国为其首要战略竞争对手,这意味着,中国企业华为公司产品进入美国的通讯网络构成了对美国国家安全的重大威胁。因此,华为问题实际上已经上升成为美中两国之间的地缘政治较量。

      此外,美中意识形态差异也在这场争端中扮演了一定角色。在美国看来,中国的威权国家资本主义模式显著不同于西方自由市场资本主义,目前这个模式对第三世界国家产生了一定吸引力。鉴于中国在过去几十年的巨大成功以及庞大体量,因而有资格构成对西方模式的竞争。中国近年来大力推行“一带一路”倡议,在美国眼里不但是中国的重大地缘政治战略,而且还是在试图输出有别于“华盛顿共识”的发展模式,从而在地缘政治和意识形态上对美国和西方主导的国际秩序和格局构成了双重挑战。

      由于华为公司在商业上尤其是海外市场的巨大成功,使得大多数中国民众并不在意该公司冷酷无情的管理方式,反而视之为民族骄傲。美国以并非无可辩驳的理由重手打击这家在中国广受爱戴的企业,必将激发中国人民的民族主义情绪,从而助推民族主义势力在中国国内政治的影响力进一步上升,进而强化中国的威权主义政体。对于希望促进中国更加“自由化”的西方国家来说,似乎是事与愿违。

      3 华为在德国概况及德国面临的站队困境

      3.1 华为在德国的概况

      早在2001年,华为就开始在德国进行市场拓展,经过多年努力,其三大业务(通讯运营商业务、终端业务和企业业务)都已取得长足进展。目前,华为是德国三大运营商(德国电信、Vodafone和Telefonica)的主要通讯设备战略合作伙伴。在智能手机领域,华为的市场占有率已经超越苹果成为仅次于三星的手机品牌。此外,在企业领域,华为为各行业提供云计算、物联网、企业网、网络安全等解决方案,也实现了一些重大项目突破,比如与杜伊斯堡市合作建设智慧城市、为宝马公司提供高性能计算方案等项目。

      德国市场对华为公司极其重要,也许仅次于中国市场:一方面是因为德国市场本身容量巨大;另一方面,华为是一个出身卑贱的企业(来自于发展中国家),因而极度渴望得到美英法德等主要老牌西方发达国家的接受和认可。但美英法对华为的限制要超过德国,而德国对待华为的态度和政策更为务实,允许这家中国企业利用德国自由开放的经济环境,一步步成长为德国ICT领域的重量级玩家。华为也极力把其德国客户塑造成可以大力鼓吹的样板点,以辐射全球市场。因此,华为在德国市场往往是不计代价地投入。2007年,华为将其欧洲总部从英国搬至德国西部城市杜塞尔多夫,并在慕尼黑建立欧洲研发中心,管理其全欧范围的18个研发机构。多年来,华为在德国持续大量投资,从2014年到2018年,仅在慕尼黑就投资达4亿美元。截止2018年底,华为在德员工人数超过2000人 ,是在德最大中资企业之一。今日华为在德国地位之显赫,以至于经济界和联邦政府在处理涉华为问题时都必须瞻前顾后、三思慎行。

      3.2 德国面临选边站队的困难决定

      美国不但在国内事实上禁止采购华为产品,而且还发起了一场高调的国际行动来打击华为,敦促其盟友加入这个行列。目前,以美国为首的情报共享组织“五眼联盟”中的国家(美国、英国、加拿大、澳大利亚和新西兰)中:澳大利亚和新西兰已经率先跟进;英国尚未完全决定,但英国电信已经决定在未来5G网络建设的核心网部分排除华为(仍然可以参与无线接入网),并拆除现有核心网中的华为设备;加拿大尚未作出决定。此外,日本作为美国在东亚的紧密盟国和中国的地缘政治对手,也在2018年12月宣布把华为从政府采购清单中排除,日本三大通讯运营商表示将跟随政府决定,不让华为参与5G网络建设。

      而在欧洲盟友中,德国的决定至关重要,整个欧洲都在观望德国。作为欧洲最大经济体,德国在美中两个最强大国之间的选边站队,是一个风向标,具有极大的示范效应。

      根据政治新闻网站POLITICO的报道,在2018年12月的一次闭门会议中,美国技术专家向德国政策制定者们出示了相关信息,作为要求德国将华为从5G网络建设排除的理由。美方完全清楚,柏林的态度将影响整个欧洲,其它欧洲国家信任德国在网络安全方面的经验和能力,因而很可能仿效德国的决策 。

      考虑到德国将于2019年春季拍卖5G频率,各运营商也正在紧锣密鼓地开始5G建设规划,面对强大的传统盟友美国突如其来的压力,以及可能触怒新兴超级大国、同时也是德国最大贸易伙伴中国的风险,德国政府正处于聚光灯之下,可谓进退两难、宽严皆误。

      3.3德国内部各方在华为问题上的立场

      在是否允许华为参与德国5G建设这个难题上,尽管目前所有各方都把目光转向德国联邦政府,但是,作为一个民主国家,德国政府不能无视其它利益攸关者的态度,必须综合权衡国内国际诸多因素,才能作出最终决定。以下是一个简略分析:

      通讯运营商(德国电信、Vodafone和Telefonica):
      德国电信(Deutsche Telekom)是欧洲最大的跨国电信运营商,多年来与华为有良好的合作关系。一方面,德国电信CEO Timotheus Höttges说,“网络基础设施的安全性,不管是过去还是现在,对我们都是非常重要的。”但另一方面,目前德国电信仍然继续与华为的合作;如果不允许华为参与未来的5G网络建设,考虑到华为在技术上的领先和价格上的优势,那么势必将延缓德国电信的网络建设进度并大大增加建设成本 。

      总部位于英国的Vodafone集团德国子公司CEO Nick Read则表达了对华为的某种支持,他说,“华为已经占据整个欧洲市场份额的35%,不能无视这个事实。如果排除华为,那么5G建设的进度将会放慢,成本将会增加。我们需要清楚地界定,华为可以参加哪些网络部分的建设,是敏感的核心网部分还是仅仅只是无线接入网。”鉴于对华为产品安全性的担忧,Vodafone决定,在核心网部分将不再使用中国产品。但是Nick Read同时也对华为进行辩护,他说,“我感觉华为对目前形势是持开放态度的,并正在努力改进其产品安全性。 ”

      德国另一家主要的通讯运营商Telefonica O2与德国电信和Vodafone立场类似,也不希望禁止华为参与其网络建设。为消除安全方面的疑虑,德国电信甚至建议成立一个类似于“安全TÜV”的技术监督机构,对此Vodafone和Telefonica表示支持 。

      德国工业界:
      代表德国工业界利益的组织,“德国工业联合会”(Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie,BDI)尽管在不久前发布的中国政策文件中强调了中国国家控制的模式对欧洲和德国的挑战,但该文件并不同意美国与中国“脱钩”的倾向,强调要与中国展开良性竞争,而不是将中国排除在世界秩序之外 。在关于是否允许华为参与德国5G建设的问题上,BDI也展示了其维护德国工业界自身利益的独立性。BDI主席Dieter Kempf明确警告,不要将华为从5G网络建设中排除,他认为这将导致中国采取对应措施,从而有损德国企业利益。同时,Dieter Kempf也支持通讯运营商的观点,即排斥华为将限制对供应商的选择,从而导致网络建设成本增加。Kempf进一步批评了美国政府施加压力的做法,他说,“美国人试图用其经济强权来实施对他人的制裁,他们的逻辑是,‘美国与谁为敌,美国的盟友就也得与其为敌。’”但是,Kempf对此表示反对,并强调美国逻辑与“维护自由并基于规则的世界贸易”的欧洲观念相抵触 。

      网络安全技术部门:
      德国政府负责网络安全技术的部门 – 联邦信息技术安全局(Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik,BSI)负责人Arne Schönbohm明确表示,是否禁止华为参与5G网络建设,是一个“政治决策”,言下之意是,这并非是一个网络安全技术问题。Arne Schönbohm称,“BSI的任务是,确保德国有一个安全的网络架构。所谓能够关闭德国电信网络的华为‘后门’,迄今为止并没有发现。 ”

      情报部门:
      但是,德国情报部门的态度则要悲观得多,认为采用中国华为公司的产品将会带来窃听和破坏的风险。情报部门认为,移动通讯网络属于关键基础设施,必须加以特别保护,而华为公司可能安装“后门”。尽管“后门”的说法只是一个未经证实的怀疑,但联邦情报局(Bundesnachrichtendienst,BND)前局长Gerhard Schindler称,“谁提供了通讯技术,谁就能窃听和解析通讯。你可以建造安全系统,也可以把风险降到最低,但风险仍然存在。” Schindler认为,华为在5G技术上领先一年半到两年,因此德国的国家机构根本就不能判断华为到底安装了哪些模块。这也就意味着,“在危机时刻,如果这些模块被关闭,我们将毫无准备,而且也无法应对。 ”

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "论中国的“国家资本主义”" geschrieben. 06.02.2019

      许多西方学者和政治家认为,今日中国奉行的并不是“有中国特色的社会主义”,而是“有中国特色的资本主义”,即所谓“威权统治下的国家资本主义”。在不少西方学者和政客看来,中国模式在政治方面是一党极权、经济方面由国家控制、社会方面则压制独立的公民社会。更重要的是,过去几十年来,中国经济取得了前所未有的迅猛增长,导致中国领导层对这套模式不但相当自信,而且还有意向广大发展中国家输出这套模式,横空出世的“一带一路”就是明证。鉴于中国的庞大体量和举国体制的强大执行力,西方感受到在苏联解体后首次遭遇一个强劲对手。这个对手不但在地缘政治上对美国霸权和西方主导地位构成挑战,而且给世界提供了一套迥异于西方自由民主价值观、但似乎充满活力的发展模式,从而在意识形态上也危及西方的优势地位。西方数十年来指望,中国将随着经济发展和中产阶级壮大而变得更“自由化”。但是,这个指望如今已经落空,试图“融入”中国的“绥靖政策”已经彻底失败。因此,西方日益达成共识,必须转而对中国遏制和围堵。美中贸易战的爆发,不过是“冷战2.0”的序幕而已。经济和科技的跨越式发展,是中国自信心膨胀的源泉,也是政权合法性的依托。因此,在“冷战2.0”中,经济和科技是主战场,华为公司这样的民族产业之花被拿来祭旗,也不必大惊小怪。其实,作为一家企业,华为在西方受到广泛尊敬,华为错就错在它是一家中国公司,华为是被中国“拖累”了。

      对于“国家资本主义”模式的判断,不能说没有道理,但我认为似乎过于简单武断,低估了中国政治经济发展模式的多样性和发展前景的复杂性。

      在我看来,今日之中国至少存在三种发展模式:以北京为代表的国家资本主义模式,国有企业居于主导地位,权力决定资源配置,姑且称之为“北京模式”;以上海为代表的买办资本主义模式,跨国资本占据很大优势,是为“上海模式”;以深圳为代表的民族资本主义模式,重视自主创新的民族资本大放异彩,可以称之为“深圳模式”。

      断言中国仅仅是“北京模式”一统天下是不准确的,以中国之大,上海模式和深圳模式也各领风骚。但是,进入新世纪后,国家资本日益得势并压迫跨国资本和民族资本的生存空间,也是一个不应否认的事实,所谓“国进民退”描述的就是这个现象。2008年,世界金融危机爆发,中国政府为刺激经济而推出了大搞基建的四万亿庞大投资计划。中央政府一声令下,地方政府大干快上,实际投资很可能超过十万亿人民币。在这一轮基建投资狂潮中,受益的主要是以国有企业为代表的国家资本。大规模的基建投资,不可能一直搞下去,当国内投资需求不再能满足国家资本主义的巨大胃口时,就要对外扩张。“一带一路”不是天上掉下来的,也不是某个人的主张,而是整个国家资本的集体推动。而国家资本在国家意志主导下的大举对外扩张,很容易被人指责是帝国主义。帝国主义是什么?列宁说过,帝国主义就是战争。只不过在核时代,各大国慑于核武器的巨大破坏力,尽量避免爆发热战,但冷战就难说了。

      实际上,西方既不喜欢国家资本主义的“北京模式”,也不愿意中国走上民族资本自主创新的“深圳模式”。国家资本主义意味着后发国家可以靠国家意志集中资源实现跨越式发展,东亚几个国家的成功故事,就是国家主导经济发展的结果;而“深圳模式”的典型代表,华为不就成长为西方跨国公司的强大对手了嘛!西方内心希望的是,中国选择“上海模式”,或者说“拉美模式”,成为跨国资本的原料来源和商品倾销市场,当然还要提供巨量守纪律的廉价劳动力。但是,中国不可以产业升级,不可以危及西方在食物链上的最高端地位。目前来看,中国不愿意全面推行“上海模式”,不愿意步拉美后尘;由于“国进民退”,深圳模式在全国推行的可能性也不大,全面走向“北京模式”的概率最大。这确实是一个结构性矛盾。

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "中国未能形成“公民社会”的历史原因" geschrieben. 19.01.2019

      西方所谓的“公民社会”,是相对独立于国家的,是“民间自治”的,意味着自下而上的自我发展。

      西方为何能形成这样的模式,我想可能与西欧的封建历史有关。在西欧封建社会,国王并非至高无上,他只是一个大一点的贵族而已。国王的权力是受到限制的,其它贵族和诸侯在自己的领地内是相对独立的,国王也不能直接管辖,他们甚至可能有能力挑战国王的权威。西欧在这个封建社会基础上发展,形成后来的民族国家,其国家机器类似于过去的国王,并不是至高无上的,并不能全面和无孔不入地控制社会,社会因而才能够相对独立于国家并自治。这也许是西方“公民社会”的历史基础之一。

      国王的权力,除了被贵族和诸侯分担,另外也受制于教会。国王掌握世俗权力,而教会却拥有精神权力。在中世纪,精神权力甚至高于世俗权力,国王和皇帝也得由教皇来加冕。

      也就是说,作为最高世俗权力的代表,国王却受到贵族诸侯和基督教会的双重制约和挑战,根本就谈不上什么至高无上。

      此外,西方“公民社会”的理论传统还可以追溯到洛克。洛克的思想认为,人的自然权利,包括生命、财产和自由,不能受到国家的威胁和侵犯。

      但是,中国历史的情况却大不相同,历史上就是大一统和中央集权,并非真正欧洲意义上的封建社会。而且,中国历史上的皇权至高无上,不容任何挑战,在皇权的严密专制统治下,民间社会还有多少独立空间呢?还能在多大程度上自治呢?因此,没有出现类似于西方的公民社会,也就不奇怪了。当然,也有人会说,在中国过去的王朝,皇帝的统治一般只到县一级,县以下是乡绅自治。这也许有道理,但是乡绅自治并不代表相对独立于皇权,也只能存在于皇权允许范围之内,绝不允许制约和挑战皇权,这与西欧历史是根本不同的。要不怎么说“普天之下,莫非王土;率土之滨,莫非王臣”呢?

      毛在1949年建政后,就仿效苏联建立起一个极权国家,通过单位制和户口制,对全社会进行直达最基层的严密控制。按照毛的说法,就是“党政军民学,东西南北中,党是领导一切的”,其实这就是毛对“普天之下,莫非王土;率土之滨,莫非王臣”的现代解读。在毛时期,是谈不上任何“公民社会”可能性的,民间的活力被严重束缚和压抑。

      此外,在中国历史上,宗教从来就没有像西欧中世纪时期那样重要。在西欧,上帝高于皇帝,教会能够制约甚至高于世俗权力。而中国皇帝的另一个头衔是“天子”,是天命所归,皇帝与上帝同为一体,世俗权力和精神权力集于一身。

      因此,在中国,由皇权演化而来的现代国家机器,也顺理成章是至高无上、无所不在且不容挑战的。对这一点,统治者和被统治者都认为天经地义。一个独立于国家的“公民社会”,是很难想象的。

      今日之中国,尚介于“党国”(Parteistaat)和民国(Bürgerstaat)之间。从“党国”到“民国”,中间还隔着一个成熟的“公民社会”。

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "A Study of Employment of CPEC Energy Projects: China is Hijacking Jobs or Creating Jobs?" geschrieben. 15.01.2019

      Introduction
      China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a “flagship project” of China’s entire Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) (Mardell and Eder, 2018). Up to $55 billion will be invested in the CPEC, which was launched in 2014 and which China recently described as the “fastest and most effective” of all its BRI projects. CPEC involves expanding Gwadar port, and constructing energy pipelines, power plants (which alone cost $35 billion), hundreds of miles of highways and high-speed railways, fiber-optic cables and special economic zones (Chandran, 2018).

      Since the launch of BRI in 2013, China has made extraordinary progress. However, there also have been a lot of criticisms against China’s approaches of carrying out BRI projects. One of the biggest complaints is that there's a lack of local employment opportunities and excessive reliance on Chinese employees for on-the-ground projects, which deprives participating countries of jobs (Chandran, 2018). In November 2016, an Indian political commentator, Ashok Malik (on August 2017 he became the Press Secretary to the President of India), argued that “Chinese money goes not to locals but is transferred from a state-owned Chinese bank or credit institution to a state-run or state-associated Chinese infrastructure company that executes the project using Chinese workers (Malik, 2016).” On October 18, 2017, the then-US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson criticized China that “they don’t often create the jobs, which infrastructure projects should be tremendous job creators in these economies, but too often foreign workers are brought in to execute these infrastructure projects (CSIS, 2017).” In June 2018, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad complained that he was against investments in which “the contract goes to China, and Chinese contractors prefer to use their own workers from China, use everything imported from China, even the payment is not made here. It’s made in China. So, we gain nothing at all (Ibrahim and Jaipragas, 2018).” Jeff Smith from the American think-tank, the Heritage Foundation, asserted that “the BRI can represent a one-way street: Participating nations assume large sums of Chinese debt and pay high rates of interest to Chinese financial institutions to compensate Chinese firms using Chinese materials and Chinese workers whose earnings are cycled back into the Chinese economy (Smith, 2018).”

      Therefore, in terms of creating local jobs, there is a public perception that there will be no obvious benefits when cooperating with China to construct infrastructure projects. However, according to estimation from China’s Ministry of Commerce, as of May 2017, China has invested more than $50 billion in BRI countries since 2013 and Chinese businesses have built fifty-six economic and trade cooperation zones, generating nearly $1.1 billion in tax revenue and creating 180,000 local jobs (Liu, 2018). On December 27, 2018, China’s State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of State Council (SASAC) and Chinese Academy of Social Sciences co-released an industry report named Research Report on Overseas Social Responsibility of Central Enterprises. According to this report, China’s central state-owned enterprises (SOEs) are stimulating job markets of economies involved in BRI, as a growing number of them are enhancing their employment mechanisms aside from increasing job opportunities. Until end of 2018, these central SOEs have hired more than 360 thousand local employees in all BRI host countries (People.cn, 2019).

      Therefore, what are the facts in the host countries of BRI? Is China hijacking jobs or creating jobs? This essay tries to answer this question by studying the employment of CPEC energy projects.

      The Demography and Labor Forces of Pakistan
      Pakistan is the fifth most populous country in the world with a population of 207 millions, it is also one of the world’s largest youth bulge country with 48 percent population aged 15-49. In terms of the size of the labor forces, Pakistan is the 10th largest country in the world. In 2012/2013, the number of unemployed people was 3.73 million out of the total labor forces of 59.74 million (MoF Pakistan, 2015). Given the very large scale of Chinese investments on CPEC, both the government and the people of Pakistan have very high expectations that CPEC will boost Pakistani economic development and create tremendous job opportunities.

      Employment Opportunities of CPEC as a Whole
      According to estimation from “the News International” of Pakistan, CPEC will create around two million direct and indirect new jobs (The News International, 2016). Gwadar Port Authority (GPA) Chairman Dostain Khan Jamaldini said that the port city alone would be able to create over 40,000 jobs having more capacity of job opportunities in future (Business plus, 2016). According to The CPEC Portal, until June 2017, CPEC has created over 38,000 jobs, of which 30,000 have been secured by locals. The 17 early harvest projects of CPEC, of which 11 are in implementation already, have become a source of direct and indirect employment, and more than 75% jobs are available for locals (The CPEC Portal, 2017).

      Sahiwal Coal Power Plant Project
      Sahiwal Coal Power Plant is regarded as one of the early harvest projects under CPEC. The project was launched by two Chinese state-owned enterprises, Huaneng Shandong and Shandong Ruyi Technology Group Co., Ltd., with the share of 50% each. However, Shandong Huaneng Company is responsible for the operation of the Power Plant. It is a 2x660 MW power plant with the utilization of the most advanced technologies, and has the capacity to generate over nine billion KHW of electricity annually, which is enough to meet demand of over 10 million households. The founding ceremony of this project took place on July 31st, 2015 and was completed in a period of 22 months and 6 days, ahead of the deadline of the contract (Zia and Waqar, 2018a).

      Zia and Waqar (2018a) have visited this project and collected the data and information of employment as the following:

      Constructional Phase
      The total direct jobs created during the constructional phase of this project were almost 6,500, among them 2,730 (42%) were Pakistani domestic workers and 3,770 (58%) were from China. By major occupational groups, the total number of workers hired in Pakistan on professional and managerial posts (having relevant experience of 5 years) was 45 (31%) while the rest 100 (69%) workers were hired from China. 350 (30%) of all technical/skilled labors were hired in Pakistan, in contrast, 800 (70%) from China. Meanwhile, 1,400 (82.36%) semiskilled and 200 (57%) administration staff were also hired in China. However, more unskilled workers (60%) were hired in Pakistan, namely 1,845. The following figures give us a clear picture of the composition and breakdown of the labor forces during the constructional phase:


      Figure 1. Labor Composition in Constructional Phase of Sahiwal Coal Power Plant


      Figure 2. Labor Breakdown in Constructional Phase of Sahiwal Coal Power Plant

      According to Zia and Waqar (2018a), the main reason for this composition is the unavailability of required skills of Pakistani domestic labor forces. Hence, the management of the Chinese enterprises was forced to hire labors from China which certainly cost them more in terms of wage, security, insurance and other travelling costs. For unskilled jobs there were actually more Pakistani workers than Chinese workers.

      Operational Phase
      The total direct jobs created during the operational phase are 1,779, from which 1,108 (62.3%) are the Pakistani domestic labors while 671 (37.7%) were from China.

      There were five major occupational groups: 29 (40%) Pakistani workers were hired for professional and managerial posts, while the left 42 (60%) were from abroad, summing up a total number of 71 executive managers. The number of technical labors hired in Pakistan were 219 (44%) in contrast to 272 (66%) foreigners. However, 457 (59%) semiskilled, 172 (100%) unskilled and 231 (86%) administration staffs were hired in Pakistan during the operational phase of the plant. The following figures give us a clear picture of the composition and breakdown of the labor forces during the operational phase:


      Figure 3. Labor Composition in Operational Phase of Sahiwal Coal Power Plant


      Figure 4. Labor Breakdown in Operational Phase of Sahiwal Coal Power Plant

      As the plant is super-critical and utilizes various advanced technologies, the skills of Pakistani labor forces are insufficient to meet the requirements of operating this modern power plant. Therefore the Chinese preferred to employ and train fresh qualified engineers from numerous engineering universities in Pakistan to address this problem. The first batch was fully hired from University of Engineering and Technology Lahore (UET) and National University of Sciences and Technology Islamabad (NUST). The graduates hired from UET were 80 to 90 out of 124 engineers, while the rest were the graduates of NUST. However, the next recruitment in 2016 was selected from almost all the major universities of Pakistan. Soon after the recruitment, the employees were sent to China for six months of technical training. After returning to Pakistan, they were sent to UET to complete a specially designed 12-module program. All of these candidates have returned back until August 2017 to operate the plant. Currently, the most Chinese workers are working in the maintenance department; all of them shall leave Pakistan within three years. Therefore, around 100 Pakistani domestic workers have been hired in 2017 in order to take over the work of the Chinese in the maintenance department. The plant planned to hire 100 additional Pakistani domestic workers in 2018 for the same purpose.

      Meanwhile, Zia and Waqar (2018a) have also observed that national and international training as well as workshop seminars had been organized, job promotion was fairly awarded without nationality based bias or discrimination. Overall, the leaders are developed from within the plant.

      The above analysis focuses on the direct jobs created under this project. However, the plant has further sub-contractors which are required to accomplish other tasks including security and coal intake from the railways to the coal mill etc. These requirements also create many indirect jobs for Pakistani people.

      Employment of the 16 CPEC Energy Projects
      There are totally 16 energy projects under CPEC. According to Rashid et al. (2018), if taking Sahiwal power plant as a benchmark for the upcoming projects, the number of jobs to be created during the constructional phase is estimated to be 50,828, while 22,900 jobs have been created under 5 energy projects which include coal power plant as well as hydro projects. Thus, totally 73,728 jobs will be created under these energy projects. Among them around 30,966 (42%) would be Pakistani workers while around 42,762 (58%) would be Chinese workers who are more than local labors. However, given that many Pakistani graduates have already gained the required skills during the construction of Sahiwal Coal Power Plant and other projects, and the Chinese investors are planning to decrease the number of Chinese employees by further providing training to Pakistani labors, therefore it is expected that the number of Pakistani workers during operational phase would be much higher than that of Chinese workers, and the percentage of Pakistani workers of all the energy projects during operational phase could be also higher than that of the Sahiwal Coal Power Plant which is a early harvest project.

      Comparison with CPEC Road Infrastructure Projects
      Zia and Waqar (2018b) have also studied six CPEC and related road infrastructure projects. The results show that approximately 52,000 direct jobs have been created under these projects. Among them only 7% are Chinese workers. Hence, the outcome of their study negates the impression that only the Chinese are getting the employment in CPEC projects. According to this result, Zia and Waqar (2018b) made a conclusion that the criticisms of hijacking job market by Chinese nationals are usually based on perception and political statements, which should be overlooked and changed to focus towards the long-term and sustainable development, growth and prosperity of Pakistan.

      Compared to these road projects, obviously the percentage of Chinese workers in the energy projects are much higher. The reason could be that energy projects are more technology-intensive than road projects, and there is still big gap between the skills of Pakistani labor forces and the technical and managerial demands of these energy projects, therefore the investors had to bring qualified labor forces from China to Pakistan.

      Conclusion
      China’s approaches of implementing its ambitious BRI strategy have caused deep concern that it is not interested in creating jobs for host countries, instead, China prefers to bring large-scale Chinese labor forces to these countries to carry out BRI projects. However, the results of studying CPEC energy projects show that this perception does not entirely fit the facts. Although there are more Chinese workers than Pakistani labor forces during constructional phases of these energy projects, but this could be due to the skill deficits of Pakistani labor forces. During operational phase of these power plants, much more Pakistani workers are hired than Chinese workers. The Chinese investors are also training and empowering Pakistani locals so that Chinese workers could return to their home when Pakistani workers are able to take over the entire operation. Compared to more technology-intensive energy projects, the percentage of Pakistan domestic workers in the CPEC road infrastructure projects is much higher; this fact also negates the perception that China is not willing to create jobs for host countries of the BRI projects. On the other hand, there is still room for the Chinese enterprises of carrying out BRI projects to improve the fulfillment of their social responsibilities; knowledge transfer and empowerment of the local workforces should be continued and enhanced.

      References:

      Business plus (2016) 300 factories to generate 40,000 jobs at Gwadar Port. Available at: https://www.businessplustv.pk/2016/06/30...at-gwadar-port/ (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Chandran, N (2018) China can make its Belt and Road project more successful if it taps locals, experts say. CNBC. Available at: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/14/china-mu...tive-panel.html (accessed January 14, 2019).

      CSIS (2017) Defining Our Relationship with India for the Next Century: An Address by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Available at:
      https://www.csis.org/analysis/defining-o...e-rex-tillerson (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Ibrahim, Z and Jaipragas, B (2018) NOTHING TO FEAR FROM CHINA, SAYS MALAYSIA’S MAHATHIR MOHAMAD, BUT LOPSIDED DEALS MUST END. South China Morning Post. Available at: https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/geopoliti...ohamad-lopsided (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Liu, W (2018) China’s Role in Global Governance. Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy. Available at: https://carnegietsinghua.org/2018/09/10/...nance-pub-77204 (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Malik, A (2016) What CPEC means for South Asia: It fundamentally alters Pakistan’s alignment, sundering its link to the subcontinent. THE TIMES OF INDIA. Available at: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/blog...e-subcontinent/ (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Mardell, J and Eder T (2018) The BRI in Pakistan: Too big to fail. Mercator Institute for China Studies. Available at: https://www.merics.org/en/blog/bri-pakistan-too-big-fail (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Ministry of Finance, Government of Pakistan (MoF Pakistan) (2015) PAKISTAN ECONOMIC SURVEY 2013-14. Available at:
      http://www.finance.gov.pk/survey/chapter..._Population.pdf (accessed January 14, 2019).

      People.cn (2019) The Central SOEs Promote Employment in BRI Host Countries央企促进 “一带一路”当地就业. Available at:
      http://ccnews.people.com.cn/n1/2019/0102...7-30498461.html (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Rashid, S, Zia, M and Waqar, S (2018) Employment Outlook of China Pakistan Economic Corridor: A Meta-Analysis, Centre of Excellence-CPEC. Available at: https://cpec-centre.pk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/021.pdf (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Smith, J (2018) China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Strategic Implications and International Opposition. The Heritage Foundation. Available at: https://www.heritage.org/asia/report/chi...onal-opposition (accessed January 14, 2019).

      The CPEC Portal (2017) CPEC early harvest projects create over 30,000 jobs for locals. Available at: http://www.cpecinfo.com/cpec-news-detail?id=MzE3Nw== (accessed January 14, 2019).

      The News International (2016) CPEC projects will generate 2mln jobs. Available at:
      https://www.thenews.com.pk/latest/133092...erate-2mln-jobs (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Zia, M and Waqar, S (2018a) Insights of Employment of CPEC Energy Projects, CPEC Quarterly Spring Issue-2018. Available at: http://www.cpec.gov.pk/brain/public/uplo...Magazine2-2.pdf (accessed January 14, 2019).

      Zia, M and Waqar, S (2018b) Employment Generation and Labour Composition in CPEC and Related Road Infrastructure Projects, Centre of Excellence-CPEC. Available at: https://cpec-centre.pk/wp-content/upload...re-Projects.pdf (accessed January 14, 2019).


    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "Poor Trump and Powerful Xi" geschrieben. 10.01.2019

      I have just watched Donald Trump's first national address on border wall and government shutdown, and the immediate response from Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.

      What a poor President of the United States! This is my perception. Trump is demanding $5 billion in border wall funding. Come on! Only 5 billion USD, it is just a small money, but as the President of the richest and strongest country of the entire world, Trump has to actually use all his means to convince or "force" the congress to approve his plan, even at the price of government shutdown.

      As the head of state and chief of government, the power of American President seems very limited. Is that the so-called “check and balance”? With such limited power, how can he "Make America Great Again"? Compared to poor Trump, obviously our President Xi is far more powerful. Look at China’s unprecedentedly ambitious “Belt and Road Initiative”! This grand strategy spans over 60 countries and will cost over a trillion dollars. Early in 2013, our powerful President declared his decision, but he did not need an approval from the National People’s Congress at all. Who is more powerful? President Xi is probably better equipped to achieve "the great renaissance of the Chinese nation". If Trump were smart enough, he should turn to China! 5 billion dollars are nothing for rich China. Trump should make a deal with China to end the trade war which he started. If so, he would need neither Mexico nor Congress to pay for his wall, China will pay everything. Moreover, China is very good at infrastructure building, in this respect China could also offer its help. Who has built the Great Wall?

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "The workload at Huawei and China's development" geschrieben. 05.01.2019

      Everyone knows, the workload at Huawei is extremely heavy. I cannot deny this judgment because I really worked overtime very often at Huawei, especially when I was working in the R&D! At that time I used to arrive in office at 9am and leave office at 11pm. NO weekend at all! And I was not the most hardworking one. The life was then really tough, but Huawei also offered what a young and ambitious man aspired to, namely good pay, opportunities for career promotion, exciting projects, travelling worldwide and working with outstanding people, and so on. I must emphasize, I have no intention to argue in favor of overtime work. For personal life and health, too much overtime work and too heavy workload are really bad and even could be dangerous. However, for China and Chinese young people, do we really have a better choice other than hard work?

      Why has China achieved an unprecedented economic miracle in the past 40 years? Its large, disciplined and skilled labor forces are exactly one of the reasons. The American President Trump claimed, "We have rebuilt China". Did he mean the American people were also one part of the hardworking Chinese labor forces? I belonged to the labor forces previously, but please, I was not the cheap and unskilled labor force, but very good educated one. In 1978 China was still a poor agricultural country, unlike Western Europe, the USA and Japan, China was a latecomer in modernization and without any colony. Therefore, I can hardly imagine China had any other means other than the ruthless and thorough exploitation of its huge demographic dividend to finalize its industrialization and the subsequent industrial upgrade.

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "中国正在重返帝国之路吗?" geschrieben. 26.12.2018

      Gunter Schubert教授是德国知名的东亚问题专家,图宾根大学教授。他来柏林讲学,题目是:“The return of an empire – China’s asia policy in the Xi Jiping era(重返帝国,中国在习近平时代的亚洲政策)”。他认为,在习治下,中国正在重返帝国,他引经据典,头头是道。哈哈,难道这就是传说中的"中国威胁论",既然被我遇见了,那就不得不挑战一下。我对这名教授说,我理解的帝国,其重要特征在于,它们拥有广泛的海外利益,并且为了捍卫和扩张这些利益,它们会在必要时动用军事力量。历史上典型的帝国,如大英帝国,拥有遍布全球的殖民地,而且以武力为后盾统治这些殖民地;美国也是这样一个全球性帝国,有遍布全球的军事基地,当美国利益受到威胁时,美军无疑是坚强后盾,美国多次毫不犹豫地动用其强大军事机器维护和攫取海外利益;前苏联同样是这样一个有全球利益的典型帝国。

      而所谓崛起中的“中华帝国”,却并没有海外军事基地(不要拿吉布提说事,那儿只是一个补给中心,远远谈不上作战基地),大规模远程军事投送能力严重不足。这个“中华帝国”,连台湾也拿不下,北朝鲜也搞不定,它的“扩张”,很大程度只是做生意,很多还是赔本生意。所以,中国目前绝不是世界历史上的典型帝国,把中国称为“帝国”,是对中国的复兴的误读,也是对中国能力的高估。

      对我的质疑和挑战,Schubert教授回应说,中国也可能是一种新的方式实施帝国扩张,不是基于武力而是基于协商的方式。

      我说,如果中国以和平方式谋求扩大海外经济利益的行为是“帝国扩张”的话,那么德国作为欧盟的主导国家,在欧盟是同样的作为,难道德国也是一个欧盟内的“帝国”吗。所以,对崛起中的中国,更合适的定义不是“帝国”(empire),而是“领导力”(leadership)或“领袖国家”(leading nation)。

      对于我的挑战,该教授也无法正面反对。

      感想:中国的发展招致多方质疑和不安,但我们似乎并未能进行有效澄清和反制。我们并不缺理论家和思想家,但似乎缺乏能在国际场合清楚阐述自己思想理论的人。外语还是短板呀,在中文成为与英语比肩的世界通用语言之前,中国的专家学者,还得加把劲把外语能力提上去。

      不过,看到他们说中国现在是“帝国”,说心里话,我还是很高兴的,尽管中国实际不是。但没办法,我就是高兴,我说不定也是一个“帝国主义者”。“帝国扩张”,是一件多么激动人心的事!那是一股多么昂扬向上的力量!多么高尚健康的乐趣!不过,关键问题是:谁在“扩张”?

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "Formal institutionalization and informal network of relations" geschrieben. 25.12.2018

      In 2010, I became the managing director of Huawei Software Business Unit in Western Europe. At that time the business development of our department was still in early stage, and the operational management was also at a low level. But I was very ambitious and launched a quite radical reform in order to make great achievements in a short time. Of course my motivation was to secure the chance of my own promotion.

      When I took over this Business Unit, all of its country managers and heads of business divisions were Chinese, there was no any European employee occupying a leadership position. Therefore I promoted many European employees to take over leading positions. Meanwhile, I tried to institutionalize the operation of our department by establishing a mechanism of bi-weekly voice conference across all the countries in Western Europe region. In the past, the official language of our department meetings was Chinese, thus, our European colleagues had no chance to participate the departmental management and decision-making at all. I realized this would restrict the potential of our European colleagues, therefore I changed the meeting language to English. Many Chinese managers were reluctant to speak English because they thought the efficiency of communication would be greatly reduced, but I was unmoved by such arguments and forced them speak English during the bi-weekly meetings. After carrying out these reform measures, the European colleagues were more heavily involved in the departmental management and business development. The effects were obvious, our revenue increased 100% after only one year!

      I paid very much attention to the formal institutionalization of departmental management and was heavily involved in business development, but unfortunately I have ignored the importance of establishing and maintaining informal network of relations. The result proved to be fatal. Many Chinese managers were against me, and I also failed to win the recognition from my boss. Although I have made an unprecedented business achievement in Western Europe, I was not promoted, but replaced by another Chinese manager. After he took over my position, he immediately cancelled the bi-weekly voice conference call and changed the meeting language back to Chinese. He did not care about the formal institutionalization and localization, but I have to admit, he was very good at building informal network of relations which really plays a decisive role in an Chinese organization. Many Chinese managers praised him, and his boss also recognized him, finally, he was promoted to a higher position. Several years later, I left Huawei, now I heard that the business performance of my previous department was getting worse and worse, so that it was no longer an independent Business Unit.

      Today, when I look back the reform I pushed for, it can be regarded as an attempt of institutionalization. I don’t think my efforts were wrong, institutionalization is absolutely important for any large organization, however, you can’t ignore the importance of informal network of relations, especially in an Chinese organization!

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "Strategic partnership between China and Germany: crisis-proof and future-proof?" geschrieben. 25.12.2018

      Today I have read a paper written by Michael Staack in March 2018, a professor of political science at the Helmut-Schmidt-Universität/Universität der Bundeswehr Hamburg(汉堡德国国防军大学). This paper is with the title “Strategische Partnerschaft zwischen China und Deutschland: Krisenfest und zukunftstauglich?” (Strategic partnership between China and Germany: crisis-proof and future-proof? 中德战略伙伴关系 – 经得起危机和时间的考验?)
      After reading this paper I realized the relations between Germany and China are not so fragile and unstable as I thought before. Actually we should not overestimate the importance of the ideological differences between the two countries. Instead, the both share quite a lot of common interests: economical, political and even strategic. In my opinion, today’s foreign policies of the both countries follow to a greater extend the institutionalism of the international relation theories, which is quite different from the realistic, nationalistic and unilateral approach of the USA under the leadership of President Trump.

      I used to believe Germany was just the political colony of the USA without basic political independence. This impression could be wrong! At least for some important issues, Germany has bravely taken different positions against the USA. Professor Staack mentioned in his paper an very important political and strategic event. In 2004/2005 the George W. Bush administration of the US had the plan to accept east Asian countries, especially Japan, to join NATO. Given that Japan and China are actually strategic rivals, China must strongly oppose this action. But eventually this plan has not been implemented, one of the most important reasons is that, Germany opposed this idea! The motives for Germany’s attitude are obvious. First, Germany has no interest in taking sides in unresolved territorial conflicts in east Asian region. Secondly, it has very close ties with all the states of the region and therefore has no interest in supporting one regional power against another. And thirdly, from the German point of view, it is highly questionable whether NATO should play any active role in the Asia-Pacific region and whether it is in Germany's foreign and security interest. Therefore, Germany actually has its own positions in terms of foreign policies and strategies. Recently, Germany is not willing to follow the USA and Australia to forbid Huawei’s 5G products and solutions into German market, this is another evidence of Germany’s political independence from the US.

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "Are Germany and China natural partner?" geschrieben. 25.12.2018

      I need to write a seminar paper on China's foreign policy, now I am struggling to find a concrete thesis. I don't want to only focus on China because I am not only a Chinese but also a world citizen, since I have worked in China, India, Africa and Europe for a long time. I really can be regarded as a person with world perspective instead of a narrow nationalist. Therefore, I prefer to write something on Sino-German relations. Professor Lian Yuru from Peking University has argued for a long time, that Germany and China are natural partner, because the two countries actually have no fundamental conflicts, instead, they share many common interests. Professor Lian's argument seems reasonable and meaningful, especially under the condition that the US is probably recalibrating its world strategy. The Trump administration treats China increasingly as its prime competitor, and Germany is no longer the loyal little younger brother of the US as it was during the cold war. The German foreign minister Heiko Mass has openly talked about the necessity of reconsidering Germany's dependence on the US. In this sense, it could be very interesting to study the Sino-German relations under the new conditions. What do you think about this topic? Any suggestions or comments are welcome and appreciated.

    • Chaoting Cheng hat den Blog-Artikel "The US decided to withdraw its troops from Syria" geschrieben. 25.12.2018

      The Trump administration has decided to withdraw its more than 2000 soldiers from Syria, the reason is that "the mission of defeating IS is delivered". I really doubt if the Americans have read my article written on Dec. 1st, 2015 (德军能给叙利亚带去民主吗?). It seems they agree with the approach I have argued.

      The key issue in Syria is to restore the law and order instead of pushing "regime change" to carry out the so called "experiment of democracy". Democracy is indeed a luxury which must be based on the principle of the separation of the religion from the state. Meanwhile, a prosperous, stable and solid middle class is also indispensable. In order to meet these requirements, Syria still has a long way to go. Among all the political forces in Syria, only Assad regime is able to restore the order. If the foreign powers destroyed this regime, the perspective of ending the long lasting civil war would be very gloomy. What happened in Libya? Trump's decision shows us that the Americans have accepted the ruthless fact that Russia and Iran had won this geopolitical competition at this moment. However, it could be also possible that Trump administration is trying to withdraw from the troublesome middle east and mobilize more resources to the so called "indo-pacific" region, in order to contain its prime competitor: CHINA.

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